A week's worth of quick, healthful meals for budget-minded families
SUNDAY: The family won't be able to resist Glazed Lamb Chops (see recipe) today. Serve them with fresh green beans and Mediterranean Market Salad. In a large nonstick skillet, cook 1 ½ pounds fresh broccoli florets, 1 ½ tablespoons minced garlic and 1 teaspoon pepper in 1 ½ tablespoons canola oil over medium heat 5 to 6 minutes or until broccoli is softened. Add 3 cups water and the seasoning packets from any 2 (6.5-ounce) packages wild mushroom couscous (or another flavor); bring to a boil. Remove from heat; stir in couscous and cover. Let stand 7 minutes. Sprinkle with ½ cup quartered kalamata olives. Add dinner rolls. Buy bread pudding for dessert.
Plan ahead: Save enough lamb, salad and bread pudding for Monday.
MONDAY: Make Stuffed Pitas from Sunday's leftovers. Chop leftover lamb and combine with the leftover Mediterranean Market Salad. Mix with plain yogurt. Line pitas with lettuce leaves and fill with lamb mixture. To accompany the pitas, make this Cucumber Salad: Peel, halve lengthwise, remove seeds and slice 2 medium cucumbers. Combine ½ cup plain yogurt, ½ teaspoon minced garlic, ½ teaspoon cumin, 1 tablespoon fresh chopped mint and 3 tablespoons golden raisins; mix well. Spoon over cucumbers and toss to coat. Warm the leftover bread pudding for dessert.
TUESDAY: There were no complaints at our house when Linguine With Goat Cheese and Tomatoes arrived at the table. Cook 12 ounces linguine according to package directions; drain. Meanwhile, toss 1 pound grape tomatoes (halved) with ½ teaspoon sugar and coarse salt to taste in a bowl to release the juices. Toss the cooked pasta with 1 (4- or 5-ounce) package crumbled goat cheese in a warmed serving bowl until the cheese is melted. Add the tomatoes and their juices, ⅔ cup sliced kalamata olives, ½ cup shredded fresh basil leaves, coarse salt and pepper to taste. Toss to mix and serve immediately. Serve with a romaine salad topped with sliced hard-cooked eggs and Italian bread. Enjoy plums for dessert.
WEDNESDAY: Treat the kids to chicken nuggets (from frozen) For an easy entree. Give them some honey mustard sauce on the side. Make your own Oven Fries: Heat oven to 425 degrees. Cut 1 ½ pounds unpeeled potatoes into ½-inch wedges and toss with 1 tablespoon canola oil and ½ teaspoon coarse salt. Bake on a large foil-lined baking sheet coated with cooking spray about 30 minutes or until tender. Serve with my favorite childhood vegetable, green peas (from frozen), and add bread sticks. For dessert, slice some kiwi.
THURSDAY: To keep an eye on the budget, Salsa Verde Bean Enchiladas (see recipe) are a good choice. For a tasty dessert, top vanilla pudding with strawberries.
Plan ahead: Save enough strawberries for Friday.
FRIDAY: Take it easy tonight and prepare veggie burgers (from frozen). We always jazz them up with pepper jack cheese, lots of dill pickle slices, lettuce, tomatoes, mayonnaise and Dijon mustard. Serve on toasted whole-grain hamburger buns. Add baked vegetable chips. Angel food cake with leftover strawberries is dessert.
Plan ahead: Save enough cake for Saturday.
SATURDAY: Invite your guests for this melt-in-your-mouth Almond-Crusted Pork With Mango Relish (see recipe). Serve with rice tossed with fresh chopped parsley, fresh sugar snap peas and a baguette. For dessert, top leftover cake with warm chocolate sauce and light whipped cream.
Glazed Lamb Chops
¾ cup dry red wine
⅓ cup orange juice
4 garlic cloves, minced
4 shallots, minced
2 tablespoons minced fresh rosemary
1 ½ teaspoons dried oregano
3 tablespoons olive oil
18 (2- to 3-ounce) lamb rib chops
1 teaspoon coarse salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 tablespoons honey
In a medium bowl, whisk together wine, juice, garlic, shallots, rosemary, oregano and olive oil. Reserve ¼ cup. Pour remaining marinade into resealable plastic bag; add lamb chops. Chill 2 hours. Remove chops from marinade; discard marinade.
Sprinkle chops with salt and pepper. Place chops on rack of roasting pan coated with cooking spray. Stir together reserved ¼ cup marinade and the honey. Broil chops 3 inches from heat 5 minutes on each side or to desired doneness, basting with honey mixture after 3 minutes on each side.
Makes 18 chops.
Nutrition information: Each serving contains approximately 77 calories, 9 g protein, 3 g fat, 2 g carbohydrate, 29 mg cholesterol, 132 mg sodium and no fiber.
Carbohydrate choices: 0.
Salsa Verde Bean Enchiladas
2 (15-ounce) cans Southwestern bean salad
1 teaspoon cumin
12 (6-inch) soft corn tortillas
2 cups salsa verde
1 ½ cups shredded Mexican cheese blend
Sour cream, chopped avocado, fresh chopped cilantro and lime wedges for garnish
Heat oven to 350 degrees.
Drain 1 can of bean salad; discard liquid. Place in food processor. Process until pureed but still slightly chunky.
In a large bowl, mix together pureed bean salad, the remaining can of bean salad with liquid, and the cumin. Spoon mixture evenly down center of tortillas. Roll; place seam side down in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Pour salsa verde evenly over enchiladas. Top with cheese. Cover with nonstick foil. Bake 30 minutes or until beginning to brown around edges. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. Garnish as desired.
Makes 6 servings.
Nutrition information: Each serving contains approximately 285 calories, 12 g protein, 9 g fat, 40 g carbohydrate, 27 mg cholesterol, 1,047 mg sodium and 5 g fiber.
Carbohydrate choices: 2.5.
Almond-Crusted Pork With Mango Relish
2 large mangoes, peeled, pitted and diced
¼ cup minced purple onion
¼ cup minced red bell pepper
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon fresh chopped mint
½ teaspoon coarse salt, divided use
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided use
¾ cup toasted almonds, finely chopped, divided use
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
2 pounds pork tenderloin
1 ½ tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Arugula for garnish
Heat oven to 450 degrees.
In a medium bowl, combine mangoes, onion, bell pepper, vinegar, mint and half the salt and pepper; set aside.
In a shallow container, mix well ½ cup almonds, brown sugar, cumin, coriander and cinnamon. Brush pork with olive oil; season with remaining salt and pepper. Roll pork in almond mixture; place on a foil-lined rimmed baking pan. Coat pork lightly with cooking spray and roast 20 to 25 minutes or until internal temperature is 145 degrees. Let stand 5 minutes. Place on serving platter; top with mango mixture and remaining almonds. Garnish with arugula.
Makes 4 servings.
Nutrition information: Each serving contains approximately 532 calories, 49 g protein, 22 g fat, 38 g carbohydrate, 119 mg cholesterol, 339 mg sodium and 6 g fiber.
Carbohydrate choices: 2.5.
Susan Nicholson is an Atlanta-based cookbook author and registered dietitian. She can be reached by email:
Food on 05/29/2019
Print Headline: 7-day menu planner