Winter Meal Planning
Winter Meal Plan Written by Meg Crossan @barefoot.farming.family
Reducing the mental load surrounding food is an ongoing ambition for many families.
This adaptable plan can help you to simplify your meals, shop locally,
and eat in a more sustainable and ethical manner.
Due to the limited availability of UK produced whole foods in winter months this plan is
designed for people eating a diet that includes meat and dairy products.
Readers who follow a plant based diet may find this season's plan more difficult to replicate
owing to the regular use of leftover meat and stock. Of course these items can be substituted
for plant based foods, but I find they lend themselves less well to this style of reuse,
repeat eating. This is an ongoing series and you will find the summer and autumn meal plans
are far more adaptable to plant based eating.
I have not concerned myself with breakfasts and lunches, this is not a fad diet after all, in
winter we mostly eat porridge for breakfast and fresh soup and bread for lunch.
Sunday - Roast Lunch; Pastured Beef, Lamb, or an organic Chicken. (Stock from this
meal also makes soup for the week)
Monday - Cold cuts and jacket Potatoes.
Tuesday - Pie; chicken and ham, Shepherd's, or Cottage (depending on Sunday's
leftovers: this includes the veg and gravy not just the meat).
Wednesday - Pasta based for midweek ease. Think Mac n Cheese with pancetta and
winter greens. Take this opportunity to make double quantities of Béchamel sauce for
use later in the week.
Thursday - Fish; with two toddlers to feed we stick to what we know works; we opt
for wild Salmon with roasted veg, or a comforting fish pie (hello yesterday's
Friday - Toddlers have free rein here, our weekly rhythm includes a trip to town
on a Friday, we shop at the weekly market and get staples from the supermarket before
spending the rest of the afternoon cooking and baking. It's best to have an open mind
for this activity but children LOVE to be properly involved in family life and
knowing they've cooked your meal gives them great joy. We've had afternoon tea,
homemade quiche, toad in the hole, sourdough pizza (a lot), meatballs (rolling is lots
of fun) and risotto (ditto stirring).
Saturday - This does vary as Saturdays are our most likely day for trips and plans, if
we are at home all day we usually have Saturday tea especially if Fridays baking has
included a cake, paired with sandwiches, chopped fruit and homemade sausage rolls
this can be put on the table for everyone to help themselves. If you are coming back
in the early evening I recommend a Game casserole in the slow cooker or a low oven;
using local game cooked in wine or cider to mellow the flavour it can be a little strong
for some if cooked quickly.
Roasting a joint or Chicken on a Sunday sets this family meal plan up for an easy
week of cooking and eating. I highly recommend a Sunday roast as part of your weekly
rhythm, it lends itself to a slow day at home prepping vegetables while the meat cooks,
and discourages frantic weekends rushing around, which are easy to do when time is
so constrained by modern day life.