Blue Plate Specials

This post is my attempt to capture meals eaten this week (June 20-27, 2019) , affordably procured and tastily prepared. Each meal is no more than $5 per serving*, as far as I can guess. 

But here’s the fun part:  In documenting a week’s worth of eating, I realized that I was always serving food on my blue Wedgwood (note the no ‘e’) plates or Spode big bowls. Hence, the blue plate title–a term I’ve been familiar with since childhood, but never knew of the origins. 

When I researched the meaning of blue plate special, I was pleasantly surprised to learn that it was pretty relevant to what I was trying to convey.  A blue plate special refers to an inexpensive and complete meal served usually at a diner or café.  It became popularized as a term in the 20’s.  Apparently, early specials were served in blue divided plates (with sections for different portions).  Some plates may have been solid blue, but other plates appear to have been Wedgwood and Spode knock-offs with the blue willow design.  Rail lines also had blue plate specials for purchase during the long commute, and these plates may have been blue and white featuring drawings of the trains.  One could count on getting a relatively square meal with all food groups by buying the blue plate special, no matter the place.  But importantly:  no substitutions allowed.  The blue plate special is a distinctly American cultural experience from what I could discern.

You will note that there are fewer breakfasts than dinners in the pictures below.  We have green smoothies once or twice a week, and I did not put those in, so you will have to use your imagination.  Also, no lunches?  Yes! No lunches.  We eat breakfast around 9:30-10:00 am, have a snack of nuts/olives/cheese in the afternoon, and then have dinner around 6:30 pm.  This provides for a 14-15 hour intermittent fast between dinner and breakfast. Well, at least that is the goal.

No recipes are given, but where I have similar recipes already on I have included a link.  I know, I know . . . some pictures are really bad.  All I can say is that I was hungry.  Poor Mr. Artifact had to wait patiently while I photographed his meals, sometimes hastily done with my cell phone.  Thank goodness I don’t blog for a living.

Dinner 4: salmon with blackberries and salad of golden spiralized beets, radishes, avocados, mushrooms, cabbage

Breakfast 5: salad with ACV/mustard dressing, avocado, green onions, home cured bacon, butternut squash crisps, poached eggs

Links to similar dishes: Ostreoidea Adventure, Glorious Halibut, Easy Au Gratin, Greek Goddess Dressing, Mayonnaise.

  • Source for salmon, rock fish and salmon dogs: Vital Choice
  • Source for bacon and sausage: home made (stay tuned for post). Organic pork belly sourced from Black Wing
  • Source for grass fed flank steak: Grass Run Farms
  • Source for oysters: grocery store, jarred oysters
  • Serving sizes: 3 oz for salmon, 1.5 oz for bacon and sausage, 4 oz for flank steak, 3 oz for oysters

*A final word about price: $5 per serving is based on the fact that I was using some pricey wild caught seafood. You could cut the price in half by finding quality, wild caught salmon on sale in your local grocery store. The least expensive meals above were the oyster dishes, coming in at $3.50 each.


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