hands on skill making a dinner

Choosing a menu for dinner

Today you are going to plan your complete dinner menu.  I have given you many suggestions on this page, but feel free to use any of your families resources for cookbooks or other meal ideas.

You will be including the following in your menu:

  • soup or salad
  • bread
  • casserole or main dish
  • vegetable
  • dessert–pie

Decide……Soup or salad?

You are going to choose a soup or a salad as the first  course of your dinner.  

Tips for soups

  • Instant potato flakes  make an excellent thickener for stews and soups
  • Use bouillon cubes for extra flavor when adding liquid to homemade or canned soups.
  • For a special touch in your soup choose a garnish.  Choose one that best suits your soup:  snipped parsley or chives, croutons, shredded cheese, crumbled bacon, crushed corn chips, or a dab of sour cream.

Choose a soup recipes from unit 5

or try this easy vegetable soup recipe.

Easy vegetable soup

1 can of tomato soup and 1 can of milk or water

Your choice of vegetables—onions, mixed vegetables, green beans, garlic, potatoes—anything you enjoy.

Salt and pepper

Combine all in a pot and heat to serving


Tips for salads

  •  Use a minimal amount of dressing for a tossed salad to avoid undue wilting.  Do not add dressing until just before serving.
  • Place your greens in the refrigerator before serving.
  • For crisper salads, dry green completely until absolutely water free and chill thoroughly.  
  • To prolong the life of cucumbers, peppers, zucchini, and other fresh vegetables in refrigerator, wrap in paper towel to absorb moisture and place in a plastic bag with a few holes punched in it for air.
  • Use a potato peeler to peel a long, continuous strip from a nice red ripe tomato.  Wind strip round and round into a tomato rose to garnish salads.
  • To make fringed cucumbers slices, trim ends of cucumber, but do not peel.  Pull sharp fork prongs firmly down length of cucumber on each side all around making indentations the entire length of cucumber.  Then slice thinly and chill.

Or  choose to make a salad from unit 7

Now choose a main entree for your meal:

chicken on rice made simple

chicken pot pie

easy lasagna

meat lovers pizza bake

burrito casserole

honey chicken

Choose your vegetables /and your starch:

Depending upon which main entrée you chose, you want some sides that compliment your meal.  Some may require a starch–like rice, potatoes, or noodles.  Others already have that incorporated into the dish and all you will need is a vegetable.  You can choose canned or frozen vegetables.  I would choose a simple and plain way to prepare these, unless you have a favorite recipe picked out. I will give examples of some vegetables to choose. Do whatever you decide, these are just suggestions.

chicken on rice made simple——this already has a starch I would choose any of your favorite  vegetables like corn, green beans, or peas.

easy lasagna—this already has a starch I would choose any of your favorite like corn or green beans.

burrito casserole—this would be good with a side of rice.  You can purchase a box of Mexican rice and prepare it with the directions on the back.  Choose a  vegetable like carrots or green beans.

chicken pot pie—this is almost a complete meal with vegetables already inside.  I would serve it over a plain couscous or rice.

meat lovers pizza bake—-I would serve this with homemade macaroni and cheese  and some peas or frozen broccoli

honey mustard chicken —you can serve this with any rice or noodle sides.  There are many to choose from at the store for around $1.  Choose broccoli, sweet potatoes, corn, or green beans.

 Choose a bread

You have learned much about  baking bread.  You can choose from any of the recipes you have already made.  Look back and maybe choose biscuits, crescent, or dinner rolls.  You can also mix up a batch of your bread dough the day before and have it ready for your meal.

Here is our family’s favorite bread recipe

If you want to spruce up your butter you can try making cinnamon butter for your meal.  It’s very easy and delicious.

With a mixer beat

  • 1 stick butter, softened
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon

Finally a dessert

For your dessert, there are numerous ideas to choose from.  We are going to use the information from last unit about pie making.  This pie you can make the day before, so that you will have no worries about getting it all done on time.

There is much information on this page.  I am including a print off checklist on the next page to help your organize your plan.