Our Dinners this Week: Whole Foods

Written by Meena Agarwal on February 25th, 2013 | 1 Comment


I started the ODTW series with good intentions at heart. But, life happens! The main reasons I haven’t updated our weekly meal plans the past few weeks is not just sheer slacking, but also because Hubby Dear has been away on business for most days of the week. Although I love planning a completely balanced and varied meal for our dinners every night, I tend to take it easy when it’s just me and Baby Dear at the table. So for the last couple of weeks, we’ve been having a lot of pasta, stir-frys, sandwiches/wraps and grilled meat and veggies for dinner.

I also missed my regular Friday grocery day last week, which is why I had to shop today. This week is another ballgame altogether! I’ve started going to the gym in earnest, and this is made me become more consious of what and when we eat. My grocery cart today is a tesmament of that – no bag of chips hiding in there! It’s not hard to me to eat healthy (our meals are almost always whole foods, with a few helpers thrown in when necessary!) or curb my sweet cravings. And Lord knows how I instantly turn to mush at the sight of a rich, dark chocolate cake! My problem lies with the dreaded bag of chips – no matter how hard I try, if it’s there then I’m eating it. All of it. Sometimes, all at once. So my solution – just don’t buy it. Out of sight is definitely out of mind for me!

Back to this week’s meal plan. I like to have a variety when it comes to our dinners. I always try to plan in different meats and veggies, cuisines and also cooking techniques. Here’s what we’ll be eating this week, if all goes as planned:

MONDAY: Roast Tandoori Chicken, Grilled Veggies (Mushrooms, Peppers, Fennel, Cauliflower), Tabbouleh Quinoa Salad

TUESDAY: Kadhi, Karela (Bittergourd) Masala, Rice, Salad

WEDNESDAY: Egg Sambal, Bok Choy in Coconut Milk, Rice

THURSDAY: Pesto Pasta Salad, Sauteed Perogies

FRIDAY: Grilled Paneer & Veggie Paninis, Soup

SATURDAY: Fajitas, Hubby Dear’s Famous Nachos

SUNDAY: Hubby’s travelling again, so maybe burgers for Baby Dear and me!

Follow me on Instagram (hookedonheat) and Twitter (@hookedonheat) for more tid-bits and pics from my kitchen.



Our Dinners this Week: Winter Wonderland?

Written by Meena Agarwal on January 25th, 2013 | 2 Comments


The week ahead looks like it’ll be bringing some unwanted snow to our neck of the woods. Baby Dear will be going back to preschool on Monday, after being home all of last week due to the flu. What can I say, I’m actually looking forward to time alone at home just so I can get some actual work done around the house. The laundry’s been piling up, and the family room looks like a tornado just came and said hi. So yea, it would be nice to be able to vacuum the house without having a toddler begging to try it out!

I’ve also planned to do a lot of work on the blog this week, so watch out for some exciting new content coming your way. 2013, let’s get to work! Here ‘s what we’ll be eating this week for our dinners. Since many of you asked, yes – Baby Dear does eat whatever we eat. I’m not an advocate of making separate dinners, except when we’re having something extra spicy that he can’t possible have. But otherwise, it’s almost always the same meal for the three of us. Follow me on Instagram (hookedonheat) and Twitter (@hookedonheat) for more tid-bits and pics from my kitchen.

SATURDAY: We’re having a family movie and munchie night, so a mish-mash of finger foods will keep us all happy. There’ll be an assortment of Cheese (Tomato & Basil Havarti, Caramelized Cheddar and Gouda) with Crackers & Grapes, Crispy Oven Fries, Taquitos (store-bought, frozen) and Paneer Tikka.

SUNDAY: I like to take it easy on Sunday nights with a quick nourishing and comforting meal to get us ready for the week ahead. A big bowl of Dal with some rice and Veggie Cutlets will be on the table tonight.

MONDAY: It’s going to be a long, busy day (aren’t all Mondays?). I have a ton of chores for the home, as well as a few freelance assignments to take care of; so dinner has to be something quick, simple and pleasing. Did I also mention we’re expecting a bad snow day? So definitely something to warm up our cold, tired bodies. Masala Scrambled Eggs with home-made Parathas it is!

TUESDAY: I have a few recipes ideas I’ve been dying to try out, so maybe today I’ll work on a Veggie Pulao recipe I’m been dreaming up. Will probably serve it along side some Spinach Dal and Raita.

WEDNESDAY: Sounds like a perfect day for a Soup & Sammie Nite. We have a big batch of Minestrone Soup in the freezer, which should pair perfectly well with some Tuna Melts.

THURSDAY: A roti night – fresh hot Rotis from the stove with some Paneer Burji.

FRIDAY: Grocery shopping day! I can’t tell you how much I look forward to hitting up the markets and picking out what we’ll be eating the coming week. It just gives me so much inspiration when I look at the abundance of fresh produce. It’s also a perfect day for me to whip up a fun meal that gets up excited for the weekend ahead. I’m thinking Tex-Mex Meatballs, Mexican Rice and side of Corn Salad should just get us in the mood. Maybe Hubby Dear will be game enough to whip up his famous Margaritas as well!!

What’s on your menu this week?



This Week for Dinner: #3 Happy Valentine’s Day!!

Written by Meena Agarwal on February 13th, 2012 | 4 Comments


I always get ask asked what I cook and feed my family on a daily basis. Truth be told, like most moms, I’m often at a loss come dinner time. I’ve found that having a meal plan ready helps me overcome the 5 o’clock stare-into-the-fridge-blankly symptom and also prevents us from getting unhealthy fast food.

I consider myself to be really lucky that Baby Dear can give any food connoisseur a run for his money. Truly, I shudder when I hear stories of how some kids won’t eat anything green; or even worse, how they will ONLY eat chicken nuggets and pasta. My 16-month old on the other hand, prefers spinach, artichoke & goat’s cheese on his pizza; will only eat a cheese quesadilla it it’s accompanied by tomatillo salsa on the side; and enjoys his grilled chicken marinated with exotic flavours. Nope, just “salt & pepper” on his food won’t work. Add in a dash of rosemary, some garlic and maybe even a splash fish sauce, and he’s a happy camper!

The little guy just started going to daycare part-time (every monday, wednesday and friday for the whole day), and this gives me plenty of time to prepare a heartier meal on those days.

Here’s what we’re having this week:

MONDAY: Masala Dosas (with potatoes), Sambhar & Tomato Chutney

TUESDAY: I’ve planned a V-Day special surprise dinner for my boys. Hubby Dear reads my blog, so I will have to update this once we’re done!

WEDNESDAY: Quick Tandoori Chicken, Mushroom Pulao, Raita

THURSDAY: Peanut Noodles, Ginger-Chilli Shrimp, Pineapple Salad

FRIDAY: Hubby Dear has take the day off. So after we drop Baby Dear to his daycare, we’re off to celebrate Valentine’s Day. The plan is to hit the mall for some retail therapy, have a fancy lunch at on of our favourite places and maybe catch a movie. Then we pick up Baby Dear, surprise him with a treat and we all go out to dinner at Applebee’s, which is one of our favourite places to dine in as a family!

WEEKEND: It’s a long weekend with Monday being Family Day, so we’ve plans for doing lots of family-related fun stuff. Dinners this weekend are up in the air right now!

Menu Plan Mondays hosted by Orgjunkie.com



This Week for Dinner: #2 Giving Thanks!

Written by Meena Agarwal on October 10th, 2011 | 2 Comments


Happy Thanksgiving!! With this being the long Canadian Thanksgiving weekend here, we had a chance to put in some great family fun time. Although I didn’t go all out put together a big feast (we have been crazy busy with some commitments and had to really let a big dinner pass by this year, but I’m planning on doing a big family feast in the next few weeks – American Thanksgiving weekend maybe!), we did enjoy a lovely family meal of simply Indian Home-style Chicken Curry and Biryani.

This coming Friday, Baby Dear turns a milestone – he turns one people, ONE!!! I can’t even believe how quick this past year passed us by! It’s been a fun journey so far, and with the ‘lil dude just fresh on his feet, I’m looking forward to a gazillion fun experiences more! We also got a chance to unpack all our sweater and warm, comfy blankets, so Fall in on my mind. Which can only mean – soups, stews and curries!

MONDAY: Leftovers from Thanksgiving long weekend
There’s Biryani, Chicken Curry, some delicious Dal and bit of Baingan Bharta. And for dessert, some yummy leftover Cherry Pie from Whole Foods!

TUESDAY: Mixed Bean Soup & Crackers

WEDNESDAY: Honey-Garlic Chicken, Stir-fry Veggies, Rice

THURSDAY: Spaghetti & Meatballs, Salad

FRIDAY: Chicken Marsala with Sauteed Mushrooms, Roast Potatoes, Salad. And homemade Chocolate Cupcakes with rainbow icing for Baby Dear’s first b’day!! Yes, my ONE year LOVES Chicken Marsala with Mushrooms & Roast Potatoes on the side. I may have hit the jackpot! 

SATURDAY: OUT!!!

SUNDAY: Potato & Egg Curry, Rice, Raita, Salad

Menu Plan Mondays hosted by Orgjunkie.com



This Week for Dinner: #1 Baby & Me

Written by Meena Agarwal on October 3rd, 2011 | 4 Comments


I need to confess. I have a love-hate relationship with menu planning. There have been weeks where I find myself all put-together: completely balanced meals planned for the entire week in advance, a grocery list filled with healthy food choices and snacks, and my grocery budget in check. Then there are weeks in between where I endlessly stare at my open fridge and pantry slowly shaking my head at the lack of options to throw down a good dinner, Baby Dear wailing and tugging at my pants for attention, and a frantic call is made to Hubby Dear to pick up something, anything on his way home for dinner. And most often than not, it’s the dreaded tasteless fast food that walks in the door with him in tow.

For the past few weeks, I’ve been trying to slowly get the HoH household on track. Since Baby Dear is now a regular at our dinner table, I’ve been forced to plan meals ahead that are not only nutritious, but also a delight to eat. Thank heavens, Baby Dear has been a trooper thus far – eating anything and everything we put in front of him. Except for bananas that is, the mere smell of us peeling one makes him gag. Can someone please enlighten me on how an 11-month old who can scarf down such gourmet creations as Chicken Marsala (which by the way, is delicious at Olive Garden!!), Lamb Biryani and Malaysian Chicken Curry feels like throwing up just looking at a banana? Well, I can’t really complain. I mean, how many 11-month olds do you know that happily eat such strong vibrant flavours anyway?

This is exactly why I’ve decided to give this weekly meal planning gig another whirl. A little more seriously this time around. My philosophy is simple: plan well balanced dinners, include a variety of flavours & textures, leftovers for lunch, and enjoy a night out on the weekend! Hubby Dear is away on business for most of this week; Monday to Friday, to be exact. So it’s just Baby Dear and me. But we gotta eat too, and there no reason why we can’t enjoy a good meal on our own now is there! So here’s what Mommy and Baby plan to gorge on while Daddy’s away…

MONDAY: Leftovers from Hubby’s surprise b’day party
There’s Tandoori Chicken Wings, Kebabs, Rosemary Roast Potatoes and Eggplant Parmesan to choose from. Not to mention, a Chocolate Mousse Cake and Pineapple Trifle too!

TUESDAY: Soy Ginger Fish, Sauteed Bok Choy, Fried Rice (brown)

WEDNESDAY: Chicken Noodle Soup with Veggies

THURSDAY: Homemade Pizza

FRIDAY: Chana Dal Masala, Sauteed Peppers & Potatoes, Rce (Basmati)
Hubby Dear’s back, and there’s nothing like a big comforting bowl of Dal and rice after a week of restaurant meals!

SATURDAY: OUT!!!

SUNDAY: Indian home-style Chicken Curry, Rice (Basmati), Salad

Menu Plan Mondays hosted by Orgjunkie.com