A clip-and-save guide to a week's worth of meals This...

MENU PLANNER

June 11, 2000|By Susan Nicholson | Susan Nicholson,Universal Press Syndicate

A clip-and-save guide to a week's worth of meals

This week's menus

Each day of the week offers a menu aimed at a different aspect of meal planning. There's a family meal, a kids' menu aimed at younger tastes, a heat-and-eat meal that recycles leftovers, a budget meal that employs a cost- cutting strategy, a meatless or "less meat" dish for people who may not be strict vegetarians but are trying to cut down on meat, an express meal that requires little or no preparation, and an entertaining menu that's quick.

Sunday/Family

Fire up the grill and watch Dad prepare his own grilled steak recipe for the family. Serve Dad's specialty with Baked Zucchini With Rice and Feta (see recipe). Add a romaine salad and sourdough bread. Store-bought German chocolate cake will make Dad smile.

Plan ahead: Ask Dad to pre-pare enough steak for Monday and save enough baked zucchini and cake for Monday.

Monday/Heat and Eat

Make a steak salad for tonight using thin slices of leftover steak arranged over a bed of mixed greens tossed with a light red-wine vinaigrette. Serve with baked zucchini and bread sticks. Bring out the leftover cake for dessert.

Tuesday/Express

Start your quick meal with Progresso's (or another brand) lentil soup. Put together a platter of deli salads on red-tip lettuce leaves and include tuna salad and potato salad. Add sliced tomatoes to the platter. Serve with whole wheat bread. Fresh fruit is just right for dessert.

Wednesday/Kids

Be a hero and make Kids Chicken and Rice (see recipe) tonight. Add French-cut green beans (use frozen) on the side. Crunch on some carrot sticks, too. Serve with multi-grain rolls. Cookies add a sweet touch.

Tip: The adults might like to add some spicy salsa to their chicken and rice.

Thursday/Meatless

Italian Beans Over Pasta (see recipe) is a filler-upper. Serve with a mixed green salad and crusty bread. Serve store-bought lemon pudding topped with light whipped cream for dessert.

Friday/Budget

Keep saving for your vacation with Grilled Turkey and Cheese Sandwiches. Combine 2 tablespoons each peach preserves and light cream cheese and spread over 4 slices rye bread. Top with 2 slices smoked turkey breast and 1 slice reduced-fat Swiss cheese and another bread slice. Grill sandwiches in a little melted margarine or butter until golden brown on both sides. Cut in half and serve with canned chowder. Add a green salad and bowls of fresh fruit for dessert.

Saturday/Entertaining

Invite your friends over for Greek-Style Flounder (see recipe). Sail away with Tomato-Mint Couscous Salad (see recipe). Accompany the meal with steamed fresh sugar snap peas and sourdough bread. Buy a Boston cream pie for dessert.

Shopping List

What you'll need for this week's menus (consult recipes for exact amounts)

Sunday

steak to grill

long-grain rice

crumbled feta cheese

cooking spray

fresh zucchini squash

salt

fresh mint

ground nutmeg

eggs

romaine

sourdough bread

store-bought German chocolate cake

Monday

salad greens

light red-wine vinaigrette

bread sticks

Tuesday

Progresso (or another brand) lentil soup

red-tip lettuce

deli tuna salad

deli potato salad

tomatoes

whole wheat bread

fresh fruit

Wednesday

cooking spray

onion

packaged cooked chicken breast strips

fat-free chicken broth

canned stewed tomatoes

quick-cooking rice

Parmesan cheese

frozen French-cut green beans

carrot sticks

multigrain rolls

cookies

Thursday

elbow macaroni

canned chopped tomatoes

olive oil

onion

carrot

garlic

fresh parsley

dried or fresh basil

dried oregano

salt

pepper

canned cannellini beans

Parmesan cheese

salad greens

crusty bread

store-bought lemon pudding

light whipped cream

Friday

peach preserves

light cream cheese

rye bread

smoked turkey breast

reduced-fat Swiss cheese

margarine or butter

canned chowder

salad greens

fresh fruit

Saturday

flounder fillets

red onion

yellow bell pepper strips

Kalamata olives

dry white wine

dried oregano

salt

black pepper

crumbled feta cheese

whole-wheat couscous

cherry tomatoes

canned chickpeas

scallions

olive oil

lemon

fresh mint

lettuce

fresh sugar snap peas

sourdough bread

store-bought Boston cream pie

Baked Zucchini With Rice and Feta (Sunday)

Makes 8 servings

Preparation time: less than 15-minutes

Cooking time: 40 minutes plus zucchini and rice

3/4 cups long-grain rice

1 cup crumbled feta cheese (about 4 ounces), divided

cooking spray

4 cups ( 1/4 inch) sliced fresh zucchini squash (about 1 1/2 pounds)

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons chopped fresh mint

1/8 teaspoons ground nutmeg

1 whole egg, slightly beaten

4 egg whites, slightly beaten

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