Thrifty & Organic Meal Planner for August: Hamburgers, Peaches and Mediterranean Vegetable Recipes

Hamburgers with Onions

Hamburgers with Onions

Thrifty & Organic Meal Planner for August:

Hamburgers, Peaches and Mediterranean Vegetable Recipes

Oven-Baked Ratatouille

Oven-Baked Ratatouille

Core Ingredients for August:

Minced Beef, Aubergines, Courgettes, Onions, Peaches and Quinoa

August Menu:

Hamburgers with Herb Baked Onions

Oven-Baked Ratatouille

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad with Goat’s Cheese

Amaretti Peach Melba Crumble Parcels

Amaretti Peach Melba Crumble Parcels

Amaretti Peach Melba Crumble Parcels

Welcome to August’s Thrifty and Organic Meal Planner; with the sun still shining and the mercury rising, I thought that I would continue to create thrifty and organic family friendly recipes for my August menu, with the emphasis on cooking outdoors as well as simple to prepare dishes. Last month saw me cooking with lamb, lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes, beetroot and raspberries, and I shared some lovely recipes for Lamb and Rosemary Skewers, Roasted Beetroot with Shallots, Cucumber and Yoghurt Minted Dip, Summer Salad in a Jar and Raspberry and Vanilla Custard Bake. For August, I am still working and cooking with lots of seasonal vegetables as well as beautiful home-produced organic beef and the first of the late summer stone fruits, peaches. I am also using quinoa with one of my recipes, which brings a healthy and easy to cook grain into the meal plan, and is perfect in place of potatoes or bread.

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad with Goat’s Cheese

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad with Goat’s Cheese

August is all about taking advantage of those last few precious weeks of the summer holidays, whether that be going to the beach, having a picnic or cooking outdoors, at home, on the barbecue. Now is the time to buy all of those seasonal vegetables that are plentiful and cheap such as aubergines, courgettes and tomatoes; and, it’s this time of year that big pots of ratatouille make an appearance at almost every meal – full of vibrant colours, green fruity olive oil and freshly picked herbs.

Oven Baked Ratatouille

Oven Baked Ratatouille

As well as seasonal vegetables that are bringing colour to our meals, I am just starting to enjoy the stone fruit season, and have already managed to buy some beautifully ripe peaches, apricots and plums. I am more than happy to eat them all “au natural”, sat outside on the grass with a stack of paper towels, juice dribbling down my chin! But, it is nice to create a recipe for the barbecue, and peaches in particular cook very well over coals, especially when they are cooked “en papillote” on little foil parcels.

Amaretti Peach Melba Crumble Parcels

Amaretti Peach Melba Crumble Parcels

And, what can be better than home-made burgers for the barbie! Especially when the burgers are made with organic British beef and are cooked with juicy, sweet onions with summer herbs. I am a big burger fan of the old-fashioned hamburger school – simply made with a little bit of seasoning and a finely diced onion mixed with the meat. All that is needed to serve them are a selection of sauces, ketchups, pickles, mustards and relishes as well as the ubiquitous hamburger bun. We are not lovers of the overly sweet, white “plastic” bread buns, so I usually serve our hamburgers in home-made baps or wholemeal bread buns.

Hamburgers with Baked Onions

Hamburgers with Baked Onions

Then there are the left-overs from the ratatouille, with such a large amount made to take advantage of the energy used baking them, this is inevitable.  I have made soups from left-over ratatouille before and or course you can just serve it again as a vegetable accompaniment; but, I discovered that by adding a couple of scoops of ratatouille to cooked and seasoned quinoa, another tasty recipe had been created that would suit vegetarians and carnivores alike. Serve the quinoa salad with some crumbled goat’s cheese on top and a scattering of herbs and you have another tasty meal that would be perfect for picnics and lunch boxes too.

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad with Goat’s Cheese

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad with Goat’s Cheese

As regular Lavender and Lovage readers know, when I post my monthly Thrifty and Organic meal planners, I always try to keep the costs down, with a cost breakdown for each recipe. The cost will never go over £15 per meal for a family of four, and I try to used home-grown herbs and store-cupboard seasonings that we all have to keep the costs even lower. In the past, I managed to create meals for under £5 a meal, which just goes to prove that organic ingredients do not have to be expensive. So, here is my breakdown of costs for this month’s menu, and I think you will be surprised to see just how thrifty I have been this month!

Hamburgers with Baked Onions

August Shopping List:

(I have not added salt, pepper and basic store-cupboard ingredients such as olive oil and herbs, as most people will already have these in their stores, and the price will be negligible)

600g organic minced beef = £4:17

1 kilo onions = £1:50

2 aubergines = £2:00

2 courgettes = £1:50

1 red pepper = 0:80

1 yellow pepper = 0:80

1 garlic bulb = 0:30

750g tomatoes = £3:20

200g quinoa = 0:60

200g goat’s cheese = £2:00

4 peaches = £1:00

Amaretti biscuits = £1:00

100g raspberries = £2:00

TOTAL: £20:87

Individual meal breakdown costs:

Hamburgers with Herb Baked Onions = £4:39

Price per head (serves 6) = 0:73

Oven-Baked Ratatouille = £9:02

Price per head (serves 8) = £1:12

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad with Goat’s Cheese = £3:46

Price per head (serves 6)  = 0:57

Amaretti Peach Melba Crumble Parcels = £4:00

Price per head (serves 4) = £1:00

 (I shopped at Waitrose, Morrisons & Sainsbury’s using the So Organic Range and the local Farm Shop. Prices correct at time of publishing)

BBQ Summer Savoury Onion and Hamburgers

BBQ Summer Savoury Onion and Hamburgers

More recipe and leftover ideas:

Meatloaf

Minced Beef and Vegetable Pasties

Spaghetti Bolognese with Vegetables

Beef Lasagne

Vegetable Lasagne

Ratatouille Frittata

Summer Vegetable Quiche

Ratatouille Soup

French Onion Soup

Gazpacho

Peach Ice Cream

Peach Pie

Peach Trifle

Amaretti Peach Melba Crumble Parcels

Amaretti Peach Melba Crumble Parcels

I hope that August’s Thrifty and Organic menu inspires you to take to the garden and have a barbecue – it’s a great time to take advantage of all the seasonal fruit and vegetables that are available, as well as enjoying the sun. I am pretty pleased with how low I have managed to keep costs this month, and by making large quantities of the ratatouille, not only do you save on energy but it makes many more meals with the leftovers. Next month, September, sees the last month of my partnership with Organic UK, so look out for a special “finale” menu as well as a bit of a party – more news to follow about that later! Have a wonderful week and enjoy these last few weeks of the summer holidays, Karen 

Barbequeued Summer Savory Onions

Barbecued Summer Savory Onions

RECIPES:

BBQ Summer Savoury Onion and Hamburgers Banner

Hamburgers with Baked Onions

Serves 6 burgers
Prep time 15 minutes
Cook time 20 minutes
Total time 35 minutes
Meal type Lunch, Main Dish, Snack
Misc Child Friendly, Pre-preparable, Serve Hot
Occasion Barbecue, Birthday Party, Casual Party
Region American
By author Karen S Burns-Booth
Tasty home-made hamburgers with added onion and baked herb onions, perfect for the barbecue!

Ingredients

Hamburgers

  • 600g minced beef
  • 1 onion, peeled and finely diced
  • Salt and pepper

Baked Onions

  • 3 to 4 onions, peeled and cut in half
  • Summer savory, or herbs of your choice
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

Note

Tasty home-made hamburgers with added onion and baked herb onions, perfect for the barbecue!

Directions

Step 1 Mix the diced onion with the minced beef and then season with salt and pepper.
Step 2 Place each half of onion in an individual sheet of foil and drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and pepper and place a sprig of summer savory on each onion half. (Or herbs of your choice) Seal the foil parcels.
Step 3 Place the onions in foil on the barbecue and cook for about 10 to 15 minutes, depending on the heat of the barbecue, before cooking the burgers. Cook the burgers to your personal liking and serve with toasted buns, salad, pickles and relishes.

Oven Baked Ratatouille

Oven-Baked Ratatouille

Serves 6 to 8
Prep time 30 minutes
Cook time 40 minutes
Total time 1 hours, 10 minutes
Dietary Vegetarian
Meal type Appetizer, Lunch, Main Dish, Salad, Side Dish, Snack, Starter
Misc Child Friendly, Pre-preparable, Serve Cold, Serve Hot
Occasion Barbecue, Birthday Party, Casual Party, Formal Party
Region French
By author Karen S Burns-Booth
A French classic with a slight twist; most of the vegetables are oven baked/roasted before adding the fresh tomatoes towards the end of cooking, which results in a tastier flavour and chunkier vegetables.

Ingredients

  • 2 aubergines, trimmed and cut into rounds/slices
  • 2 courgettes, trimmed and cut into rounds
  • 2 onions, peeled and cut into quarters
  • 1 red pepper, trimmed, de-seeded and cut into even sized pieces
  • 1 yellow pepper, trimmed, de-seeded and cut into even sized pieces
  • 3 to 4 cloves garlic, peeled and diced finely
  • 750g ripe tomatoes
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • Fresh oregano to serve

Note

A French classic with a slight twist; most of the vegetables are oven baked/roasted before adding the fresh tomatoes towards the end of cooking, which results in a tastier flavour and chunkier vegetables.

Directions

Step 1 Pre-heat oven to 220C/450F/Gas mark 7.
Step 2 Pour the olive oil into a large roasting tin and add all of the ingredients except the tomatoes and the oregano. Place the tin on the highest shelf and bake/roast for 20 minutes.
Step 3 Meanwhile, place the tomatoes into a large bowl and pour over boiling water; allow them to sit in the water for a minute, before taking the skins of them and cutting them into quarters.
Step 4 Take the tin out of the oven after 20 minutes and add the chopped tomatoes to the vegetables, place back in the oven and bake/roast for a further 20 minutes, or until the vegetables are soft but retain their shape. Pour 150mls of hot water in, and gently mix through the vegetables. Adjust the seasoning.
Step 5 Allow to come to room temperature before serving with a fresh oregano garnish.

Quinoa and Ratatouille Salad

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad with Goat’s Cheese

Serves 4 to 6
Prep time 5 minutes
Cook time 20 minutes
Total time 25 minutes
Dietary Vegetarian
Meal type Appetizer, Lunch, Main Dish, Salad, Side Dish, Snack, Starter
Misc Child Friendly, Pre-preparable, Serve Cold, Serve Hot
Occasion Barbecue, Casual Party, Formal Party
Region British
By author Karen S Burns-Booth
A wonderfully nutty tasting quinoa salad that uses left-over ratatouille and freshly crumbled goat's cheese. Perfect for picnics, barbecues and all summer dining.

Ingredients

  • 200g quinoa
  • 300mls water
  • Left-over ratatouille (about 2 to 3 normal size mugs, or more if desired)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 200g soft goat’s cheese, crumbled
  • Flat leaf parsley, to serve

Note

A wonderfully nutty tasting quinoa salad that uses left-over ratatouille and freshly crumbled goat's cheese. Perfect for picnics, barbecues and all summer dining.

Directions

Step 1 Put the quinoa into a large sauce pan with the water and bring to the boil, before turning down and simmering for 15 to 20 minutes – the water should all be absorbed and the grains will be soft but with a slight bite still.
Step 2 Mix the left-over ratatouille in with the quinoa whilst it is still hot and then allow to come to room temperature before adjusting the seasoning.
Step 3 To serve, pile the salad into a large bowl and scatter the goat’s cheese over, gently mixing it in, before garnishing with chopped flat leaf parsley.

Amaretti Peach Melba Crumble

Amaretti Peach Melba Crumble

Serves 4
Prep time 10 minutes
Cook time 10 minutes
Total time 20 minutes
Dietary Vegetarian
Meal type Dessert
Misc Child Friendly, Pre-preparable, Serve Cold, Serve Hot
Occasion Barbecue, Birthday Party, Casual Party, Formal Party
Region British
By author Karen S Burns-Booth
A beautiful summer dessert that can be cooked on the barbecue or in the oven when the weather is bad.

Ingredients

  • 4 fresh peaches
  • Handful of fresh raspberries, about 100g
  • 8 to 12 amaretti biscuits, crumbled

Note

A beautiful summer dessert that can be cooked on the barbecue or in the oven when the weather is bad.

Directions

Step 1 Cut the peaches in half and take the stone out. Gently slide the skin of them, with a tip of a knife easing it off – it should come off easily if the peaches are ripe.
Step 2 Place the two halves in individual pieces of foil and scatter the raspberries over the top, before crumbling the amaretti biscuits over the peach halves.
Step 3 Seal the foil parcels and cook on the barbecue for 5 to 8 minutes, until the peaches are soft.
Step 4 Serve straight away with cream or ice cream.

Disclaimer:
Organic UK is paying me an agreed fee to create and develop these Thrifty and Organic Recipes, as well as providing me with all the ingredients. However, as I am a big supporter of organic produce, I am happy to share these sponsored organic recipes and posts on my blog, for the benefit of my readers.

Thrifty and Organic

Thrifty & Organic Meal Planner for August

Comments

    • says

      Thanks Janice! I shall be popping over to see that intriguing sounding Amaretti bake later, anything that is no bake has to be good!

  1. says

    wow… what a bumper crop… I feel I need to be chez Booth when it’s meal planning Monday… funnily enough I made a baked aubergine and courgette dish this weekend and popped it on a pizza base, it was damn fine… your burger looks very good but it’s the peaches that win hands down for me. xx

    • says

      Thanks Dom! Never mind Chez Booth, I am more interested in visiting Chez Belleau kitchen in London or Lincs! The peach dessert was so simple and yet worked on so many levels! Karen

  2. says

    That all looks very tasty, but I’m having trouble focusing on anything other than those super cute BBQ plates! ADORABLE!!! :)
    Janie x

  3. says

    I love the idea of this monthly meal planner. Darn it, if we had the same seasonal ingredients here in Australia I’d definitely be following your ideas! Hm, I think I need to start looking up your Winter/Spring posts and then try and work forwards from there. Gorgeous recipes though Karen, I love everything on here xx

    • says

      Thanks Laura! That’s the way to do it, search for seasonal recipes for Down Under in my side bar under Monthly Archived Posts or in the Index where I have summer, spring, autumn and winter recipes! :-) Thanks so much for your LOVELY comments too, I really appreciate them!

  4. Maya Russell says

    Lovely recipes as usual. I really like the Amaretti Peach Melba Crumble Parcels – so simple.
    Shared on Twitter, @maisietoo.

  5. Tracy Nixon says

    Ohhhhh I am going to try those baked onions!!! I adore onions!!! (well I am single so I can eat them till my heart is content lol! G+’d!

  6. Ella says

    Gorgeous recipes, they all seem so delicious!! I think meal planning is a huge help as it enables people to save time and money! I have to say that I prefer to do it using more “modern” tools, as for instance mobile apps. I have tried one called Chef Plan app (if you are interesed> http://www.chefplanapp.com) and in my opinion it is absolutely wonderful. Have you already tried apps to plan your meals? Let me know your thoughts! ;)

  7. Louise Comb says

    Your recipe pictures are extremely tempting. I’m thinking of trying your Hamburger with Onions and Amaretti Peach Melba Crumble Parcels. I think both would go down very well in my household – thank you :)

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