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7-DAY MENU PLANNER: Corn salad adds freshness, color to Sunday meal

by Andrews McMeel Syndication | September 7, 2022 at 4:00 a.m.
Courtesy of America’s Test Kitchen

SUNDAY: Family day

Treat the family today to everyone's favorite, grilled steak. While you're out there, add some asparagus to the grill. Serve with Southwestern tomato and corn salad (see recipe) and make it a beautiful plate. Add mixed greens and whole-grain rolls. Buy a chocolate meringue pie for dessert.

PLAN AHEAD: Cook two extra steaks and save pie for Monday.

SHOPPING LIST: any steak and asparagus to grill, ripe mixed tomatoes, ear of corn, extra-virgin olive oil, shallot, jalapenos, lime, coarse salt, pepper, queso fresco or Greek feta cheese, cilantro, mixed greens, whole-grain rolls, chocolate meringue pie. 1/2

MONDAY: Heat and eat

Thinly slice the leftover steaks for steak sandwiches on mini baguettes: Spread prepared horseradish on the baguettes and top the sliced beef with thin slices of brie cheese. Heat until cheese melts.

Serve with baked chips and coleslaw. For dessert, the leftover pie is good.

PLAN AHEAD: Prepare rice for Tuesday.

SHOPPING LIST: prepared horseradish, mini baguettes, brie cheese, baked chips, coleslaw.

TUESDAY: Budget dining

Keep costs down and serve spicy chicken skillet.

In a large nonstick skillet, heat 1 tablespoon canola oil on medium high. Add 1 pound chicken breast (cut into 1-inch pieces); cook and stir 5 minutes or until browned and no longer pink inside. Add one medium chopped onion; cook 3-5 minutes or until softened; stir occasionally. Reduce heat to medium. Add one (10-ounce) can diced tomatoes and green chiles and one (8-ounce) can no-salt-added tomato sauce; simmer 3 minutes. Stir in 3 cups cooked rice and one (15-ounce) can ranch-style pinto beans until combined. Heat through.

Serve with a lettuce wedge and cornbread (from mix). Fresh pineapple is dessert.

SHOPPING LIST: canola oil, chicken breast, onion, canned diced tomatoes and green chiles, tomato sauce, rice, canned ranch-style pinto beans, lettuce, cornbread mix, fresh pineapple.

WEDNESDAY: Meatless meal

We loved basil spaghetti with cheesy broiled tomatoes (see recipe) for dinner. Add a packaged green salad and garlic bread. Try pears for dessert.

SHOPPING LIST: spaghetti, large beefsteak tomatoes, coarse salt, black pepper, grated part-skim mozzarella, Parmesan, olive oil, garlic, crushed red pepper, fresh basil leaves, packaged green salad, garlic bread, pears.

THURSDAY: Kids favorite

The children (and adults) will come running for turkey meatball subs: Use refrigerated or frozen cooked meatballs; heat and spoon them onto whole-grain sub rolls. Top with heated marinara sauce, then shredded mozzarella cheese.

Add baby carrots and celery sticks, along with the children's favorite dip. Munch on sliced apples sprinkled with cinnamon for dessert.

SHOPPING LIST: turkey meatballs, whole-grain sub rolls, marinara sauce, shredded mozzarella cheese, baby carrots, celery, dip, apples, cinnamon.

FRIDAY: Express cooking

Continuing the sandwich theme, make avocado-spinach paninis. Divide and layer two sliced avocados, 1/3 cup sun-dried tomatoes in oil (drained and julienned), 2 tablespoons thinly sliced red onion and 2 cups baby spinach on four (4-ounce) split ciabatta rolls. Coat skillet with cooking spray; heat on medium. Place sandwich in pan; weigh down with another smaller skillet. Cook 2 minutes or until lightly browned; turn.

Serve with tomato-basil soup. Top fresh strawberries with light whipped cream for dessert.

PLAN AHEAD: Save enough strawberries for Saturday.

SHOPPING LIST: avocados, sun-dried tomatoes in oil, red onion, baby spinach, ciabatta rolls, cooking spray, tomato-basil soup, fresh strawberries, whipped cream.

SATURDAY: Easy entertaining

Invite some lucky guests to enjoy the delicious flavors of Moroccan chicken (see recipe). Serve it over couscous. Add an arugula salad and flatbread. For dessert, top toasted pound cake with leftover strawberries and ice cream.

SHOPPING LIST: butter, olive oil, cinnamon, onion, red bell pepper, boneless skinless chicken breasts, garlic, coarse salt, cayenne pepper, orange juice, golden raisins, cilantro, couscous, arugula, flatbread, pound cake, vanilla ice cream.

Susan Nicholson is an Atlanta-based cookbook author and registered dietitian. She can be reached by email: [email protected] Follow Susan on Twitter: @7DayMenu. The Menu Planner is also accessible at 7daymenuplanner.com. Read Susan's blog: makingthemenu.com. And check out Susan's book! "7-Day Menu Planner for Dummies" is on shelves now. Order yours on Amazon.com today!

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SOUTHWESTERN TOMATO AND CORN SALAD (Sunday)

Servings: makes 4 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: none

1 1/2 pounds ripe mixed tomatoes, cored

1 ear corn, kernels cut from cob

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon minced shallot

1 tablespoon seeded and minced jalapenos

2 teaspoons fresh lime juice

1/2 teaspoon coarse salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1/2 cup queso fresco or crumbled Greek feta cheese

2 tablespoons cilantro leaves

Cut tomatoes into 1/2-inch-thick wedges, then halve wedges. Arrange tomatoes on large, shallow platter, alternating colors. Sprinkle corn over top. In a medium bowl, whisk oil, shallot, jalapenos, lime juice, salt and pepper together. Spoon over tomatoes. Sprinkle with queso fresco and cilantro. Serve. (Adapted from "The Complete Summer Cookbook," America's Test Kitchen.)

Per serving: 220 calories, 6 grams protein, 17 grams fat (65% calories from fat), 3.6 grams saturated fat, 14 grams carbohydrate, 10 milligrams cholesterol, 294 milligrams sodium, 3 grams fiber. Carb count: 1.

BASIL SPAGHETTI WITH CHEESY BROILED TOMATOES (Wednesday)

Servings: makes 4 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: less than 10 minutes plus pasta

12 ounces uncooked spaghetti

3 large beefsteak tomatoes, each cut into 4 slices

1/2 teaspoon coarse salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

8 ounces grated part-skim mozzarella

1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan, plus more for garnish

3 tablespoons olive oil

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper

3/4 cup torn fresh basil leaves, plus more for garnish

Heat broiler. Cook pasta according to directions; drain and return to pot. Meanwhile, arrange tomato slices in a single layer on rimmed baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with coarse salt and pepper. Divide and sprinkle cheeses evenly over tomatoes. Broil 3 to 5 minutes or until cheese is bubbly and golden. In a small saucepan, heat oil with garlic and red pepper 1 to 2 minutes or until fragrant. Add the garlic oil and basil to pasta; toss to combine. Serve topped with the tomatoes and additional basil and Parmesan.

Per servings: 599 calories, 28 grams protein, 22 grams fat (33% calories from fat), 8.1 grams saturated fat, 72 grams carbohydrate, 41 milligrams cholesterol, 695 milligrams sodium, 4 grams fiber. Carb count: 5.

MOROCCAN CHICKEN (Saturday)

Servings: makes 4 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: less than 15 minutes

1 tablespoon butter

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1 small thinly sliced onion

1 medium red bell pepper, cut into strips

1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces

1 teaspoon minced garlic

1/2 teaspoon coarse salt

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1/4 cup orange juice

1/4 cup golden raisins

1/4 cup chopped cilantro

In a large nonstick skillet, heat butter, oil and cinnamon on medium. Add onion; cook 3 minutes or until softened; add bell pepper. Continue cooking 3 more minutes or until pepper is softened. Add chicken, garlic, salt and cayenne pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 6 to 7 minutes or until chicken is browned and no longer pink inside. Add orange juice and raisins. Cook 2 minutes to heat through, stirring occasionally. Stir in cilantro and serve.

Per servings: 253 calories, 27 grams protein, 9 grams fat (33% calories from fat), 3 grams saturated fat, 15 grams carbohydrate, 90 milligrams cholesterol, 318 milligrams sodium, 2 grams fiber. Carb count: 1.

Print Headline: 7-DAY MENU PLANNER: Corn salad adds freshness, color to Sunday meal

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