Making every bite count

20 August 2006

Menu ideas for the week

Monday: Ease into the week
The beauty of baked dishes is that they require little to no effort. Just throw the ingredients together and put it in oven. Set a timer, and relax until dinner is ready!

Lemon-dill chicken
2 chicken breasts, rinsed and patted dry
1 clove garlic
1 lemon
6-8 small red potatoes, scrubbed and halved
1T butter
drizzle olive oil
1t dried dill
salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 400.
Salt and pepper both sides of the chicken breasts, then place them in a baking dish or cast-iron pan. Zest the lemon over the chicken and grate the garlic, using a Microplane or small grater. Divide over the chicken.
In a bowl, drizzle the potatoes with olive oil, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Add to baking dish.
Sprinkle the dill over the chicken and potatoes, then add the butter on top.
Bake for 30 minutes, until chicken is cooked through.
Serve with a green salad.

Tuesday: Comfort food
Pasta alla carbonara
Linguini or spaghetti, 1/2 package
6 slices bacon or panchetta, chopped
1/4 c parmesan cheese
2 eggs, beaten
salt and pepper to taste

Boil water in a large pot. Cook pasta according to directions, until al dente. Meanwhile, cook the bacon in a saute pan. When crispy, turn off hear and drain most of the grease.
In the serving bowl, beat the eggs and add the cheese. Mix thoroughly.
When the pasta is cooked, drain and quickly add to the bacon pan. Stir, then add the bacon and pasta to the eggs and cheese. The hot pasta will cook the eggs and make the sauce.
Serrve with green salad or steamed broccoli to cut the richness.

Wednesday: Something new and fun!
California roll salad
1/2 c chopped crab meat
1/2 c cucumber, chopped
2 c lettuce, chopped
1/2 c carrots, chopped
1/4 avocado, chopped
1/4 c soy sauce
wasabi to taste
1/2 T chopped sushi ginger (optional)
1 sheet seaweed, chopped (optional)
Mix soy sauce, wasabi and ginger. Drizzle over salad.

Thursday: In a rush!
This is one of the quickest, tastiest dinners I make. It doesn't even need to be cooked ahead of time, which makes it perfect for a worknight dinner.
Spinach, tomatoes and tofu
1 c. spinach, fresh or frozen
1 t. chopped onion, optional
2 roma tomatoes, chopped, or handful of grape tomatoes, halved
1/3 block tofu, chopped into cubes
1/2 t basil flakes
pinch garlic salt
red-pepper flakes to taste
Mix and cook in microwave until spinach is thawed and tomatoes are wilted.
The tofu takes on a ricottalike texture.
If you want a heartier dinner, try adding 1/2 cup of your favorite small pasta.

Friday: T.G.I.F.
Going out? There's still time to cook.
Try this simple recipe. It's delicious and so quick!

Salsa shrimp
1/2 c rice, brown or white
1 jar (6 oz.) salsa
1 pkg (12 oz.) shrimp, thawed and deveined*
1 T olive oil

Cook the rice according to the directions on the package.
While the rice is cooking, start the shrimp.
In a saute pan, drizzle the olive oil and turn on medium-high heat. Add the shrimp and cook until no longer pink and tails curl toward head.
When the shrimp is cooked, add the salsa and cook until bubbling.
Serve over rice.
*You can substitute firm tofu or chicken breasts for the shrimp.


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