Each day of the week offers a menu aimed at a different...

MENU PLANNER

September 09, 2001|By Susan Nicholson | Susan Nicholson,Universal Press Syndicate

Each day of the week offers a menu aimed at a different aspect of meal planning.

There's a family meal, a kids' menu, a heat-and-eat meal that recycles leftovers, a budget meal, a meatless or "less meat" dish, an express meal, and an entertaining menu.

SUNDAY / Family

Grilled chicken is on the menu today.

Serve with chickpea salad. Combine one 16-ounce can drained chickpeas or garbanzo beans, one 2-ounce jar diced pimentos, 1 / 4 cup each chopped celery and chopped red onion. Drizzle with any reduced-fat vinaigrette. Add colorful sliced tomatoes and crusty rolls. Impress everyone with Chocolate Raspberry Torte for dessert.

Plan ahead: Grill four extra chicken breasts and save enough torte for Monday.

Chocolate Raspberry Torte

Makes 16 servings

Preparation time: 20 minutes

Cooking time: according to cake package directions

one 18 1 / 4 -ounce chocolate cake mix

3 / 4 cup 1 percent cold milk

one 3.4-ounce package fat-free instant vanilla pudding

3 ounces softened fat-free cream cheese

8 ounces frozen fat-free whipped topping, thawed

2 cups fresh raspberries

powdered sugar, fresh mint and extra raspberries for garnish

Prepare cake according to low-fat directions, using three 9-inch round cake pans. Cool 10 minutes in pans on wire racks. Remove cake from pans and cool completely on racks. Meanwhile, combine milk and pudding mix; add to cream cheese and mix well. Fold in whipped topping and raspberries.

Place one cake layer on serving plate. Spread with half the filling. Add second cake layer and repeat. Top with third layer; dust top with powdered sugar. Garnish if desired. Refrigerate until time to serve.

Per serving: 208 calories, 4 grams protein, 4 grams fat (18 percent calories from fat), 1 gram saturated fat, 39 grams carbohydrate, 41 milligrams cholesterol, 425 milligrams sodium, 2 grams fiber.

MONDAY / Budget

Save money and make Fiesta Chicken.

Spoon over rice and garnish with extra chopped cilantro. Serve with jicama sticks sprinkled with fresh lime juice. The leftover torte is dessert.

Plan ahead: Save half the Fiesta Chicken and make enough rice for Tuesday.

Fiesta Chicken

Makes 8 servings

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 5 to 6 minutes

4 chopped (leftover) cooked chicken breasts

one 15- to 19-ounce can rinsed and drained black beans

one 11-ounce can drained Mexican-style corn

3 / 4 cup salsa

1 1/2 teaspoons cumin

3 tablespoons chopped cilantro plus some for garnish

salt and pepper to taste

Combine chicken, beans, corn, salsa, cumin and cilantro. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Microwave on high (100 percent power) 5 to 6 minutes or until hot. Serve immediately. Garnish with extra cilantro if desired.

Per serving: 149 calories, 18 grams protein, 1 gram fat (8 percent calories from fat), 0.2 gram saturated fat, 15 grams carbohydrate, 34 milligrams cholesterol, 523 milligrams sodium, 4 grams fiber.

TUESDAY / Heat & Eat

Make Southwestern Wraps tonight.

Heat leftover Fiesta Chicken, spoon down center of 98 percent fat-free flour tortillas and roll. Top with reduced-fat sour cream. Heat leftover rice and top with a little salsa.

Serve fresh pineapple chunks for dessert.

Plan ahead: If time permits, make Wednesday's chili tonight.

WEDNESDAY / Kids

Try Lightlife's "Smart Ground," a soy-based meat substitute, (or another brand) and make chili tonight. Top with any shredded cheese. Make cornbread muffins from a mix. Nickelodeon's newest flavor of Green Slime Icepops, sour lemon lime, speaks to kids.

Plan ahead: Save enough chili and muffins for Thursday.

Tips: The adults might want chopped onion and jalapeno peppers on their chili. They might want to skip the Green Slime, too.

Chili

Makes 12 cups

Preparation time: less than 15 minutes

Cooking time: about 45 minutes

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 each large chopped onion and green bell pepper

two 12-ounce packages Smart Ground soy-protein (or another brand)

two 15- to 19-ounce cans mild chili beans (or pinto beans)

2 cups frozen corn

two 14 1/2 -ounce cans Mexican- style stewed tomatoes and juice

2 cloves minced garlic

1 to 3 tablespoons each cumin and chili powder

1 teaspoon salt

Heat oil in a large pot on medium heat and cook onion and bell pepper 10 minutes or until softened.

Add soy protein, beans, corn, tomatoes and juice, garlic, cumin, chili powder and salt; mix well. Simmer on low heat, stirring occasionally, 30 to 45 minutes or until flavors are blended.

Note: If chili becomes too thick, thin with tomato juice or water.

Per cup: 198 calories, 18 grams protein, 2 grams fat (9 percent calories from fat), 0.1 grams saturated fat, 31 grams carbohydrate, no cholesterol, 938 milligrams sodium, 9 grams fiber.

THURSDAY / Meatless

Chili-potatoes is a meat-free time saver. Heat the leftover chili and spoon over baked potato wedges. Serve with mixed greens and leftover muffins. Make or buy tapioca pudding for dessert.

FRIDAY / Express

We loved the flavor and the ease of Classico Creations Basil Pesto Sauce and Spread (or another brand and flavor).

Baltimore Sun Articles
|
|
|
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.