Clapping On The Down Beat

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Meal Plan 3.2.11/Hot deals March 2, 2011

Filed under: 2011 Cooking 101 the basics — clappingonthedownbeat @ 7:27 PM

Today is my husband’s birthday.  He is not a birthday kind of person, but I am.  I like to make a big deal out of birthdays.  The whole week, or at least the whole day should be special.  Going out with friends, celebrating with family, cards in the mail, balloons, and of course all those birthday coupons!

If you haven’t taken advantage of them, you should.  Here are some that I like:

Baskin Robbins Birthday Club– $3 off a cake and free ice cream cone for your birthday

Ben and Jerry’s: Sign up for Chunk Mail and get a FREE Ice Cream Treat on your birthday and a discount coupon for an ice cream cake.

Starbucks Rewards- if you register your card, you get a postcard for a free drink as a birthday gift

Aveda-free full size bottle of body wash

Many restaurants do free dinners for kids birthdays with their birthday club like CPK!  California Pizza Kitchen

If you have a little one, consider signing up for the new Little Tikes Birthday Bonus Program which started March 1st. All you have to do is complete the registration form along with your child’s birthday and you’ll receive special discounts, promotions and offers approximately 30 days before your kiddo’s birthday. Keep in mind that you must register at least 20 days before your child’s birthday.

Chuck E Cheese’s: Join the email club and receive coupon offers, free tokens for your kid’s birthday and more.

Sonic: Sign up to be a Sonic Cruisers member and you’ll snag a surprise on your birthday (choice of a FREE medium Tots, a regular CreamSlush Treat or a medium drink). Kids ages 12 and younger can sign up for the Birthday Club and snag a coupon for a FREE Wacky Pack Kids meal on their birthday.

Applebees: Sign up for Applebee’s emails and you’ll get FREE dessert on your birthday.

Auntie Anne’s: Sign up for Pretzel Perks and get a different coupon every month.

Benihana: Join the Chef’s Table and you’ll receive a $30 Benihana gift certificate to use during your birthday month.  When I was younger, this was my request for my bithday dinner!

Boston Market: Join the V.I.P. club and receive a special coupon on your birthday

Bruegger’s: Sign up for Fresh News from Bruegger’s and you’ll snag a coupon for a free bagel with cream cheese upon sign-up and you’ll receive a little something on your birthday.

Buffalo Wild Wings Grill & Bar: Join the Buffalo Circle and get a coupon for a FREE dessert on your birthday

Cantina Laredo: Join the e-Club and get special offers.

Corner Bakery Cafe: Join the Corner eCafe and you will receive a coupon for a FREE fresh baked cookie in your welcome email plus a special birthday offer.

Dunkin’ Donuts: Sign up for Dunkin’ Perks and get a free medium beverage upon sign-up and another free medium beverage on your birthday.

IHOP: Sign up for the Pancake Revolution and receive a free meal upon signing up and a free meal on your birthday.

Mimi’s Cafe: Join Mimi’s e-Club and you’ll snag a coupon for a free breakfast with purchase of a breakfast entree upon sign-up. You’ll also receive a coupon for $10 off your purchase of $20 or more on your birthday.



It looks like you can score yet another FREE U By Kotex Sample! I requested one previously and was able to request one again. Just head on over here , scroll down and click on the “Try U Free” link to request one again!

Copy and paste the link below to score a FREE sample of Fekkai!


Tom Thumb:

14oz Cheerios $1.49

Oscar Meyer Deli creations and sliced meat $.99 fri-mon

Lays Potato Chips 8.5-11oz $1.99 fri-mon

Ragu $.99

Lysol wipes $1.49


Campbells condensed soup $.88

Goldfish $.99


Onions (any color) $.49/lb

Green onions $.49 each

Broccoli Crowns $.99 lb

Red,orange,yellow peppers $.77 each ( great deal, I needed one today and paid almost $2!)


Totinos Pizza $.99

Bounty Paper towels $5.99

Zatarains $1


Dawn $.94

Charmin 12ct. $4.99


MONDAY- TexMex Bake

  • 2/3 cup pearled barley
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 can green chilies
  • 1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced
  • 2 cups frozen corn, thawed
  • One 15-ounce can black beans, rinsed or pintos if you prefer
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 1/4 cups milk, warmed at least 2%
  • 3 cups shredded cheese (mexican blend or pepper jack)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 cups crushed tortilla chips


  1. In a small saucepan, bring 3 cups water to a boil; add the barley, lower the heat and simmer for 40 minutes. Drain, transfer to a bowl and let cool. Reserve the saucepan.
  2. Meanwhile, position a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat to 425°. In a large skillet, melt 1 tablespoon butter over medium-high heat; add scallions and chillies and 1/4c. water. Boil to evaporate the water. Stir into the barley with the corn, beans and tomatoes.
  3. Using the same saucepan, melt the remaining 3 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Whisk in the flour for 1 minute; slowly whisk in the warmed milk and bring to a simmer, then cook for 1 minute more. Stir in 2 cups cheese, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Stir this into the barley mixture; transfer to a shallow 3-quart baking dish.
  4. Cover with foil and bake for 18 minutes. Sprinkle the chips and remaining 1 cup cheese on top. Bake, uncovered, until the cheese is melted and the chips are toasted, 10 to 15 minutes.

TUESDAY- Sweet and Sour Sliders

  • 1 tablespoon  onion flakes
  • 1 can (15 ounces)  tomato sauce
  • 3/4 teaspoon  garlic salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon  black pepper
  • 2 pounds  ground turkey
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup  corn flake crumbs
  • 1 tablespoon  olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, sliced
  • 1/4 cup  sugar
  • 1/4 cup  cider vinegar
  • 1 package  soft mini dinner rolls, like Sara Lee

In a bowl mix the ground turkey, onion flakes, 3 Tbs. tomato sauce, 1/2 tsp garlic salt, eggs and corn flakes.  Shape into meatballs about the size of a golf ball.

Coat a small nonstick skillet with nonstick cooking spray. Heat over medium heat.  Add onion; cook 7 minutes, stirring.   Add remaining tomato sauce, remaining 1/4 teaspoon garlic salt, the sugar and vinegar.  Add meatballs to skillet and cover. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer 17 to 20 minutes or until cooked through, turning halfway.

Spoon 1 meatball and some onion sauce onto a roll. Repeat with all meatballs, most of the sauce and the rolls.

The Husband’s Birthday dinner

WEDNESDAY: 101 Chicken with Wine- easy coq au vin

  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast, sliced into 8 cutlets and pounded thin
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons butter
  • 10 ounces mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 large shallot, finely chopped (or a small cloves of garlic)
  • 1 cup red wine
  • 1/2 cup low-sodium chicken broth
In a shallow bowl, combine the flour and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Coat the chicken, shaking off any excess. 

In a large, heavy skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Working in batches, add the chicken and cook, turning once, until just cooked through, about 5 minutes; transfer to a plate. Add 1/2 tablespoon butter and the mushrooms to the pan and cook, stirring, until browned, about 5 minutes; transfer to the plate of chicken. Stir in the shallot (or garlic) and the remaining 1 tablespoon butter. Add the wine and chicken broth and simmer until reduced by one-third, about 5 minutes.  Return the chicken and mushrooms to the pan, add the thyme and cook, turning, to heat through; season with salt.

I served this with sauteed asparagus (a little olive oil and garlic in a saute pan, cook till bright green) and mashed potatoes ( I like butter, milk and 1/2block of cream cheese in them!)

THURSDAY: Stewed beans

  • 8 slices bacon
  • 1 pound baby red-skinned potatoes, cut into 1/3 -inch cubes
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • Two 15-ounce cans cannellini beans, rinsed
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 cups packed baby spinach
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • In a large skillet, cook the bacon over medium heat, turning halfway through, until just crisp, 8 to 10 minutes; drain on a paper towel- lined plate. Discard all but 2 tablespoons of the bacon grease from the skillet.
  • Return the skillet to medium-high heat, add the potatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden, 6 to 8 minutes. Stir in the onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the beans, chicken broth and lemon juice; season with salt and pepper. Simmer until the liquid is almost absorbed, about 7 minutes. Stir in the spinach and cook until just wilted, about 1 minute. Crumble the bacon on top and sprinkle with the scallions and parmesan.

Serve over a toasted and buttered baguette for an open-face sandwich.

FRIDAY: Pizza Bites  from my friend PAMELA

1 pkg pilsbury prepared pizza dough

mozzarella string cheese sticks cut in 1″pieces

favorite pizza toppings- canadian bacon and pineapple, pepperoni, sausage, mushrooms, chopped spinach and artichokes, olives…

Pizza sauce

Open pizza dough and lay out on a cutting board.  Using a pizza wheel or knife cut dough into 2″x2″ squares.  Place a small amount of  pizza toppings in the center of each square and pinch close, place seam side down on a cookie sheet.  Brush top with butter and sprinkle with parmesan cheese and dried Italian seasonings (basil, oregano, garlic).  Bake at package directions 425 for about 6-7 minutes till golden on top.  Serve with pizza sauce to dip in.


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