Just thinking about some of the things my children really look forward to (and make regular requests for) are:
- Homemade chicken schnitzels (the breast is basically filleted into 2 thinner pieces of chicken using a really sharp knife, dipped in egg then bread crumbs and baked in the oven on grease proof paper with olive oil). I serve with a homemade Caesar salad. They go mad for this.
- Lamb cutlets (only when they're on special) or the cheaper lamb leg steaks. I pan fry them in garlic, olive oil and fresh rosemary. Serve with wok tossed small chunks of potato (with the skins left on), fresh beans and julienne carrots. Another favourite.
- Roasts of course - favourites are roast beef & yorkshire puddings, roast lamb. I always use the leftover meat for a cottage or shepherd's pie.
- Cold ham (has to be good quality free-range ham on the bone). Served with mashed potato with shaved Parmesan mashed through and steamed cabbage and/or peas.
- Corned beef - slow cooked in balsamic vinegar, onion, carrot and flat leaf parsley. I will serve this with roasted/smashed spuds in garlic, roast carrots and steamed beans. I make a dijon mustard sauce with Parmesan cheese added (the sauce is basically a white sauce with the additions of the mustard and cheese). Or, they love it with roast/smashed spuds and coleslaw.
- Pick plate - cold meats (salami, ham, cold chicken etc.) with cucumber, lettuce, cherry tomatoes, avocado slices, cheese, sundried tomatoes, carrot sticks, celery sticks ... basically anything raw/easy.
- Beef strog. Our favourite is beef stroganoff cannelloni. I chop the chuck steak more fine than I would for a traditional strog. Roll the strog up in the cannelloni sheets you buy in the deli section. Lay in a baking tray, pour some of the leftover sauce over the top and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese - absolute winner. Or, just the traditional style and serve with mash.
- You can't go past 'toasty' night. We love ham, cheese & pineapple pan fried toasties, or ham, cheese and chutney. (I hate toasted sandwich makers, they're so much better pan fried).
- While boring, we love casseroles topped with cheesy dumplings, bangers & mash and I make my own tomato/balsamic chutney, or homemade pizza's cooked on the BBQ with the hood down (they taste like wood fired pizza's), everyone loves building their own. I make the bases enough for one person (about a small size that you would get from a commercial pizza seller).
Hope this helps.