say no to the dinner rut

We're in a rut, a cooking rut, and it's not a good place to be.

For the last several weeks I feel like we've been eating the exact same items. We are weeks away from falling victim to chicken Monday, fish Tuesday and son on. It's been a rotation of chicken and salad, fish and kale, stir fry of some kind, beef/chicken fajitas, homemade gluten free pizza, and the odd time gluten free spaghetti bolognese.

Needless to say I'm bored and so are my taste buds.

In an effort to pull ourselves out of the depths of food boredom I've started scouring cookbooks and blogs again looking for inspiration. We've also decided to feed L'il E leftovers so that we can go back to the days of taking our time at dinner. You see, since L'il E came into our lives meal time has become crazy-time. It's moved along a continuum of eating dinner cold every night, to sometimes me breastfeeding at the table while the Hubs continued, to one of us leaving half-way through dinner to tend to a dirty diaper or get bath started, to eating as fast as we can to move on to the next stage of the nightly routine.  If you have kids I'm sure you are all too familiar with these scenarios. If you don't have kids you still get into dinner ruts so keep reading.

Last Friday night I was fed up, we had leftover sausages from the night before in the fridge and sadly (but not unusually) not much else so I literally Googled "sausage soup recipe" and this hearty recipe came up. Thank you Canadian Living.

Fortunately I had many of the ingredients and it ended up being the perfect dinner for a cozy night in after a long week. It was also quick and easy (bonus).  I was able to throw it all together before L'il E's bath and let simmer while we read bedtime stories and tucked him in.

I have included the recipe below and as usual I made a few modifications. Give it a go!


Sausage Tomato Chickpea Stew

You'll need:

  • A couple glugs of olive oil
  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • 1 carrot diced
  • 1 celery stalk diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic minced
  • 2 Italian sausages cases removed (the sausages I used were already cooked so it made this recipe even easier)
  • 2 28 oz. cans of whole tomatoes
  • 1 can chickpeas (recipe calls for navy beans, but I only had chickpeas in the cupboard)
  • 1 cup chicken or veg stock (I used two cups and omitted the 1 cup of water from the original recipe)

Then you:

  1. In a large pot heat olive oil on medium heat.
  2. Cook onion, carrot, celery, garlic until softened.
  3. Increase heat to medium-high and add sausages and sautee for five minutes or so until they're cooked.
  4. Stir in tomatoes, breaking up with spoon. Add chickpeas and chicken stock.
  5. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and let simmer for 15-20 minutes until thickened.

That's it! It's delicious and makes about 8-10 servings. We served it with baby spinach on top as a garnish.


Do you ever get into a dinner rut? Do you have any yummy recipe to share? I'm all ears!