> Family Sunday
Roast a turkey breast for the family today. Accompany it with long grain and wild rice (packaged) and green beans and onions. Cook two (12-ounce) packages trimmed fresh green beans in boiling water about 4 minutes or until tender. Drain and rinse in cold water. In a large nonstick skillet, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil on medium-low. Add 2 medium onions, halved and thinly sliced; cook 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until golden. To skillet, add beans, salt and pepper to taste and stir; cook 3 minutes until heated. Stir in 4 slices cooked, crumbled bacon and serve. Add whole-wheat bread. Make lemon poppy seed cake with strawberry sauce (see recipe) for dessert.
Plan ahead: Save enough turkey and cake for Monday.
Shopping list: Turkey breast to roast, packaged long grain and wild rice, packaged trimmed fresh green beans, olive oil, onions, salt, pepper, bacon, whole-wheat bread, cooking spray, packaged lemon poppy seed muffin mix, frozen strawberries in syrup, fat-free, sugar-free instant lemon pudding, 1 percent milk, fresh strawberries.
> Heat and eat Monday
Make turkey Caesar roll-ups for an easy meal. In a large bowl, combine 4 cups shredded romaine, 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, 4 finely chopped green onions and 2 tablespoons light Caesar dressing. Arrange 1 cup romaine mixture in center of four 8-inch fat-free flour tortillas. Top each with 2 slices leftover turkey, 2 marinated and drained sun-dried tomatoes and pepper to taste. Fold in bottom and top portions of each tortilla. Roll from the long side to completely enclose the filling. Serve immediately with baked chips. Steam some fresh okra on the side. Slice the leftover cake for dessert.
Shopping list: Romaine, Parmesan cheese, green onions, light Caesar dressing, fat-free flour tortillas, marinated sun-dried tomatoes, pepper, baked chips, fresh okra.
> Kids Tuesday
Make the kids happy with double-bean Sloppy Joes for dinner. In a large nonstick skillet, combine 1 (15- or 16-ounce) can each rinsed black-eyed peas and pinto beans, 1 1/2 cups marinara sauce, 1 (14 1/2 -ounce) can drained diced tomatoes, 1 cup finely chopped shredded carrots, 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, 2 teaspoons red-wine vinegar and 1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder; bring to boil. Reduce heat, partially cover skillet and simmer, stirring occasionally, 10 to 15 minutes, or until carrots are tender. Spoon onto bottom of 4 split, toasted kaiser rolls; replace tops. Serve with chopped lettuce. Slurp on a strawberry banana smoothie for dessert. Puree a semi-thawed 16-ounce bag of frozen strawberries, 1 ripe banana, 1/2 cup each plain yogurt and 1 percent milk and 2 tablespoons sugar in blender. Blend and drink.
Plan ahead: If time permits, cook Wednesday's brown rice today.
Shopping list: Canned black-eyed peas, canned pinto beans, marinara sauce, canned diced tomatoes, shredded carrots, Worcestershire sauce, red-wine vinegar, chili powder, kaiser rolls, lettuce, frozen strawberries, banana, plain yogurt, 1 percent milk, sugar.
> Meatless Wednesday
Make delicious baked brown rice with broccoli and mushrooms (see recipe) for an easy no-meat dinner. Serve with sliced tomatoes and multigrain rolls. Juicy nectarines are dessert.
Shopping list: Onions, celery, fresh broccoli florets, sliced fresh crimini mushrooms, brown rice, condensed 98 percent fat-free broccoli cheese soup, 50 percent reduced-fat cheddar cheese, reduced-fat sour cream, salt, pepper, cooking spray, tomatoes, multigrain rolls, nectarines.
> Budget Thursday
Low-cost Mexican salad is just right for summer. In a large nonstick skillet, cook 1/2 pound each lean ground beef and ground turkey breast and 1 small, chopped onion on medium 8 to 10 minutes or until the meat is no longer pink and onion is softened; drain well. Stir in 1 tablespoon chili powder, 3/4 teaspoon cumin and 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder. Cook 2 or 3 more minutes.
Meanwhile, combine 1/2 cup reduced-fat ranch dressing, 3/4 teaspoon cumin and 1/8 teaspoon pepper sauce; mix well. To serve, place 5 cups torn romaine on a serving platter. Top the romaine with 1 1/2 cups halved grape tomatoes, 1/2 cup canned rinsed black beans and beef/turkey mixture. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup 50 percent reduced-fat jalapeno cheddar cheese and chopped fresh cilantro. Serve with warmed fat-free flour tortillas. Dessert is just a bowl of cherries.
Shopping list: Lean ground beef, ground turkey breast, onion, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, reduced-fat ranch dressing, pepper sauce, romaine, grape tomatoes, canned black beans, 50 percent reduced-fat jalapeno cheddar cheese, fresh cilantro, fat-free flour tortillas, fresh cherries.
> Express Friday
A new twist on an old theme makes reuben quesadillas an easy meal. Spread 2 tablespoons light Thousand Island dressing on one side of four 10-inch fat-free flour tortillas. Layer 2 ounces thinly sliced deli corned beef, 1/2 cup rinsed and drained refrigerated sauerkraut and 2 slices reduced-fat Swiss cheese onto half of each tortilla. Fold tortillas in half over filling, pressing gently to seal. Heat a large nonstick skillet to medium, add quesadillas in batches, and cook 2 to 3 minutes on each side or until golden and cheese is melted. Cut into wedges and serve immediately with corn-on-the-cob and a lettuce wedge. Try fresh plums for dessert.
Shopping list: Light Thousand Island dressing, fat-free flour tortillas, sliced deli corned beef, refrigerated sauerkraut, reduced-fat Swiss cheese, corn-on-the-cob, lettuce, fresh plums.
> Easy entertaining Saturday
Your lucky friends will enjoy curried walnut chicken (see recipe) tonight. Serve the fresh-flavored chicken over rice with snow peas on the side. Add sourdough bread. Buy fruit tarts for dessert.
Shopping list: Reduced-sodium soy sauce, dry red wine or dry sherry, canola oil, sugar, garlic, fresh ginger, boneless, skinless chicken breasts, low-fat mayonnaise, fat-free plain yogurt, lemon, curry powder, salt, pepper, walnuts, rice, snow peas, sourdough bread, store-bought fruit tarts.
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LEMON POPPY SEED CAKE WITH STRAWBERRY SAUCE (Sunday)
Makes 8 servings
Preparation time: Less than 10 minutes
Cooking time: 25 to 28 minutes
2 (6.5-ounce) packages lemon poppy seed muffin mix
1 (10-ounce) package frozen strawberries in syrup, thawed
1/2 cup prepared instant fat-free, sugar-free lemon pudding, prepared with 1 percent milk
Fresh strawberries for garnish
Heat oven to 375 degrees. Coat an 8-by-2-inch round cake pan with cooking spray. Put muffin mix in bowl; stir in 1 1/4 cups water just until moistened (small lumps may remain). Spread evenly in pan. Bake 25 to 28 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.
Meanwhile, prepare pudding according to directions. Puree thawed strawberries in a blender and set aside. Cool cake in pan on wire rack 5 minutes before inverting on rack to cool completely. Using a long serrated knife, split cake in half horizontally. Place bottom half on a plate; spread with lemon pudding. Top with remaining cake.
Pour pureed strawberries on individual dessert plates; place a wedge of cake on puree. Garnish with fresh strawberries. (Adapted from Woman's Day magazine.)
Per serving: 235 calories, 3g protein, 6g fat (21 percent calories from fat), 1.4g saturated fat, 43g carbohydrate, 1mg cholesterol, 348mg sodium, 1g fiber.
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BAKED BROWN RICE WITH BROCCOLI AND MUSHROOMS (Wednesday)
Makes 6 servings
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: About 45 minutes, plus rice
1 cup chopped onions
1 cup thinly sliced celery
3 cups fresh broccoli florets
1 (8-ounce) package sliced crimini mushrooms
4 cups cooked brown rice
1 (10 3/4 -ounce) can condensed 98 percent fat-free broccoli cheese soup
4 ounces shredded 50 percent reduced-fat cheddar cheese (about 1 cup), divided
1 cup reduced-fat sour cream
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
Heat oven to 400 degrees. Combine onions and celery; cover and microwave on high 4 minutes; drain. Spoon into large bowl. In same microwave dish, combine broccoli and mushrooms and microwave 3 minutes; drain and add to large bowl. Add cooked rice, soup, 3/4 cup cheese, sour cream and salt and pepper to bowl; mix well. Spoon into a 9-by-13-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Bake 35 minutes; top with remaining cheese. Bake 3 more minutes or until cheese is melted.
Per serving: 316 calories, 14g protein, 10g fat (28 percent calories from fat), 5.8g saturated fat, 45g carbohydrate, 33mg cholesterol, 889mg sodium, 5g fiber.
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CURRIED WALNUT CHICKEN (Saturday)
Makes 4 servings
Preparation time: 15 minutes; marinating time: 2 to 12 hours
Cooking time: About 10 minutes
For the chicken:
1/4 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
1/4 cup dry red wine or dry sherry
2 teaspoons canola oil
2 tablespoons sugar
1 clove minced garlic
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
1 to 1 1/4 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
For the sauce:
1/3 cup low-fat mayonnaise
1/3 cup fat-free plain yogurt
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons curry powder
1 clove minced garlic
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup chopped toasted walnuts
In a medium bowl, whisk together soy sauce, wine or sherry, oil, sugar, garlic and ginger until sugar is dissolved. Between two pieces of wax paper, flatten chicken to 1/2 -inch thickness. Place chicken in a resealable plastic bag; pour marinade over. Press air out and seal bag. Massage the bag gently to distribute the marinade. Place in a dish and refrigerate 2 to 12 hours, turning occasionally. Remove chicken from marinade; reserve marinade. Broil 6 inches from heat 8 to 10 minutes, turning once, brushing with marinade several times; discard marinade.
Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine the mayonnaise, yogurt, lemon juice, curry powder, garlic and salt and pepper to taste; stir in walnuts. Serve chicken with sauce.
Per serving (chicken): 141 calories, 26g protein, 2g fat (13 percent calories from fat), 0.4g saturated fat, 2g carbohydrate, 66mg cholesterol, 225mg sodium, no fiber. Per tablespoon (sauce): 37 calories, 1g protein, 3g fat (64 percent calories from fat), 0.2g saturated fat, 3g carbohydrate, no cholesterol, 51mg sodium, no fiber.