Enjoy the applause from the family when you present SOUTHWESTERN CHICKEN AND CORN DINNER. Heat oven to 450 degrees. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon flour inside a large foil cooking bag. Sprinkle each of 4 breasts and 4 thighs bone-in skinless chicken with 2 teaspoons Mexican seasoning blend. Arrange chicken and 3 ears fresh or frozen corn-on-the-cob (cut in pieces), 1 red and 1 green medium bell pepper cut into 1-inch pieces, and 1 medium onion cut into eighths in an even layer inside bag. Sprinkle 2 more teaspoons seasoning blend over vegetables. Double-fold end and place in 1-inch-deep pan. Bake 50 to 55 minutes. Open away from your face to allow steam to escape. Serve with MIXED GREENS and CORNBREAD (from mix). FLAN is dessert.
Save enough chicken for Monday.
flour, bone-in skinless chicken breasts and thighs, Mexican seasoning blend, fresh or frozen corn-on-the-cob, red and green bell peppers, onion, mixed greens, cornbread mix, flan.
Use those leftovers in this BAKED CHICKEN AND SPAGHETTI. It's just mild enough for children, and there's a bonus: one casserole for tonight and another for the freezer for another night. Serve with a LETTUCE SALAD and WHOLE-GRAIN ROLLS. SLICED PEACHES are an easy dessert.
spaghetti, green and red bell peppers, onion, canned reduced-sodium and -fat cream of mushroom soup, shredded sharp cheddar cheese, reduced-sodium seasoned salt, cayenne pepper, unsalted chicken broth, coarse salt, black pepper, cooking spray, lettuce, whole-grain rolls, peaches.
BAKED CHICKEN AND SPAGHETTI
Servings: makes 8 servings (2 8-by-8-inch casseroles)
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: about 40 minutes, plus spaghetti
- 16 ounces spaghetti
- 1/4 cup chopped green bell pepper
- 1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 to 3 cups cooked leftover chicken, shredded
- 1 (10 3/4-ounce) can reduced-sodium and -fat cream of mushroom soup
- 2 1/2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese, divided
- 1 teaspoon reduced-sodium seasoned salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 to 2 cups unsalted chicken broth
- Coarse salt to taste
- Black pepper to taste
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Cook spaghetti according to directions; drain. Combine peppers and onion; cover and microwave on high (100 percent power) 4 minutes or until softened; drain. In a large bowl, combine spaghetti, cooked vegetables, chicken, soup, 1 1/2 cups cheese, seasoned salt and cayenne. Stir in 1 cup broth and add more as needed. Season with salt and pepper. Divide into two 8-by-8-inch baking dishes coated with cooking spray. Top with remaining cheese. Cover one casserole and freeze for up to 6 months. Cover second casserole with foil; bake 35 minutes or until bubbly.
Per serving: 463 calories, 29 grams protein, 16 grams fat (32 percent calories from fat), 8.7 grams saturated fat, 48 grams carbohydrate, 86 milligrams cholesterol, 545 milligrams sodium, 2 grams fiber.
Being a penny pincher, I'm always looking for the perfect VEGETABLE BEEF SOUP. Until I find one, try this. Serve with a ROMAINE SALAD and BREAD STICKS. Warmed BREAD PUDDING is good for dessert.
Like any vegetable soup, you can add or subtract ingredients to meet your family's taste preferences.
Save enough soup and bread pudding for Wednesday.
beef stew meat, garlic salt, Worcestershire sauce, baking potato, carrot, packaged angel hair coleslaw mix, onion, zucchini or yellow squash, frozen cut green beans, frozen corn, no-salt-added tomato sauce, unsalted beef broth, dried oregano, pepper, romaine, bread sticks, bread pudding.
VEGETABLE BEEF SOUP
Servings: makes about 14 cups
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 8 to 10 hours on low
- 1 pound well-trimmed beef stew meat, cut into bite-size pieces
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
- 4 shakes Worcestershire sauce
- 1 medium baking potato, peeled and cubed
- 1 cup thinly sliced fresh carrots
- 1 cup packaged angel hair coleslaw mix
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1 medium zucchini or 2 yellow squash, chopped
- 1 (10-ounce) package frozen cut green beans, thawed
- 1 cup frozen corn, thawed
- 1 (16-ounce) can no-salt-added tomato sauce
- 1 (14-ounce) can unsalted beef broth
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
Place beef in a 4-quart or larger slow cooker. Sprinkle garlic salt on beef, then shake on Worcestershire sauce. Add potato, carrots, coleslaw mix, onion, squash, green beans, corn, tomato sauce, broth, oregano and pepper. Press down ingredients with the back of a large spoon. Add water to just cover vegetables. Cook on low 8 to 10 hours. Mix well, adjust seasonings and serve immediately.
Per cup: 94 calories, 8 grams protein, 2.5 grams fat (23 percent calories from fat), 0.9 gram saturated fat, 10 grams carbohydrate, 20 milligrams cholesterol, 98 milligrams sodium, 2 grams fiber.
Wednesday: Heat and Eat
Leftover SOUP is always better the next day. Serve with an AVOCADO-GRAPEFRUIT GREEN SALAD. (Add chopped avocado and fresh grapefruit sections to salad greens. Drizzle with poppy seed dressing and toss.) Serve with WHOLE-GRAIN ROLLS. Enjoy leftover BREAD PUDDING for dessert.
avocado, fresh grapefruit, salad greens, poppy seed dressing, whole-grain rolls.
Tonight's FRENCH DIP SANDWICHES are quick. Heat slices of deli roast beef in au jus gravy. Serve on toasted split French bread with bowls of gravy for dipping. Add OVEN FRIES (from frozen) and a BIBB LETTUCE SALAD. CHOCOLATE ICE CREAM is a welcome dessert.
Save enough ice cream for Saturday.
deli roast beef, au jus gravy, French bread, frozen oven fries, bibb lettuce, chocolate ice cream.
Keep it simple tonight with RAVIOLI WITH PEAS AND PESTO. Cook 1 pound refrigerated cheese ravioli according to directions. Meanwhile, combine 1 (14 1/2-ounce) can drained diced tomatoes with Italian seasonings and 1/2 cup loosely packed chopped fresh basil leaves. Place 2 cups frozen green peas in a colander. Drain ravioli over peas. Transfer mixture to a large serving bowl and toss with 1/4 cup refrigerated basil pesto; top with tomato mixture. Season with coarse salt and pepper to taste. Serve with MIXED GREENS and CRUSTY ROLLS. Buy deli BROWNIES for dessert.
Buy enough brownies for Saturday.
refrigerated cheese ravioli, canned diced tomatoes with Italian seasonings, fresh basil, frozen green peas, refrigerated basil pesto, coarse salt, pepper, mixed greens, crusty rolls, deli brownies.
Saturday: Easy Entertaining
Invite friends for PORK CHOPS WITH HERB MUSTARD BUTTER. Add BAKED SWEET POTATOES, a RED-TIPPED LETTUCE SALAD and SOURDOUGH BREAD to your meal. Make a TRIPLE CHOCOLATE SUNDAE for dessert. Warm leftover brownies, top with leftover chocolate ice cream and drizzle with chocolate syrup. Add a dollop of light whipped cream.
thick bone-in pork loin chops, coarse salt, pepper, butter, flatleaf parsley, honey mustard, fresh sage, sweet potatoes to bake, red-tipped lettuce, sourdough bread, chocolate syrup, light whipped cream.
PORK CHOPS WITH HERB MUSTARD BUTTER
Servings: makes 4 servings
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: about 10 minutes
- 4 1/2-inch-thick bone-in pork loin chops
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 1/4 cup (2 ounces) butter, softened
- 1/4 cup chopped flatleaf parsley, plus more for garnish
- 2 tablespoons honey mustard
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh sage
Heat broiler with oven rack 5 inches from heat. Sprinkle chops evenly with salt and pepper and place on wire rack in a foil-lined broiler pan. Mix together butter, parsley, honey mustard and sage in a small bowl until blended. Top each chop with 1 round tablespoon of the butter mixture. Broil 8 to 10 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 145 degrees. Garnish with additional parsley. (Adapted from "Quick-Fix Dinners," editors of Southern Living, Time Inc. Books.)
Per serving: 284 calories, 23 grams protein, 19 grams fat (62 percent calories from fat), 10.1 grams saturated fat, 4 grams carbohydrate, 95 milligrams cholesterol, 397 milligrams sodium, no fiber.