Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Sunday - 5 Day Meal Planner 10/17

Monday: Fish and Chips with Tartar Sauce
Tuesday: Sausage and Pepper Skewers with Grilled Polenta
Wednesday: Inside-Out Chicken Cordon Bleu
Thursday: Black Bean Quesadilla
Friday: Grits and Sausage Casserole

Monday - Fish and Chips with Tartar Sauce 10/18

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Fish Fry:
Vegetable oil
3 cups dry wheat breakfast cereal squares
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 packet garlic ranch dressing mix
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 pound Halibut fillets cut into 3 by 1-inch strips
2 eggs, lightly beaten
Chips, recipe follows
Tartar Sauce, recipe follows

Fill fryer with vegetable oil to its maximum level, or fill a deep pot no more than halfway with the oil. Preheat fryer to 350 degrees F.
Fill a gallon resealable plastic bag with 3 cups wheat cereal. Using a rolling pin, lightly crush cereal into small crumbs. Set aside.
In a shallow bowl, combine flour, ranch dressing mix, and salt. Coat fish with seasoned flour mixture then shake off excess flour. Dip in eggs and roll in crushed cereal. Continue with remaining fillets. Carefully add 3 to 4 pieces in fryer and cook until golden brown and crisp. Repeat with remaining fillets.
Serve with tartar sauce and seasoned chips.

Tartar Sauce:
1/4 cup sweet relish
1 cup mayonnaise
1 teaspoon yellow mustard
1/2 lemon, juiced
Salt and pepper
In a small dish, strain relish and discard juices. In a separate bowl, combine strained relish with mayonnaise, mustard, and lemon juice. Stir thoroughly. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve with fried halibut.

Tuesday - Sausage and Pepper Skewers with Grilled Polenta 10/19

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Nonstick cooking spray
6 cups water
1 (10-ounce) package quick cooking polenta
5 tablespoons canola oil
2 pounds hot Italian sausage
1 red bell pepper
2 green bell peppers
1 large yellow onion
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon spicy brown mustard
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
10 (10-inch) skewers

Spray a 9 by 13-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray. Bring 6 cups of salted water to a boil over medium heat. Once boiling slowly whisk in the polenta, making sure to keep whisking until smooth and thick about 1 to 2 minutes. Pour the cooked polenta into the baking pan and smooth the top. Let cool until firm, about 20 minutes.

Preheat a grill or grill pan over medium-high heat. When the polenta is cool, invert it onto a cutting board and slice it into 12 squares. Brush the squares with a little canola oil and grill until they are heated through and have nice grill marks, about 2 minutes per side.

Meanwhile, if you are using wooden skewers, soak them in water for at least 30 minutes or while you prepare the sausage and peppers.

Preheat a grill or grill pan over medium heat. Arrange the sausages on the grill and cook for 8 to 10 minutes giving them a 1/4 turn every couple of minutes. Remove them to a cutting board and let rest for 5 minutes, then cut them into 1/2-inch thick pieces. The sausage will not be completely cooked through. It will finish cooking on the skewers with the peppers and onions.
While sausage is cooking, core and slice the peppers. Cut them and the onion into 1 by 1-inch pieces.

In a small bowl, whisk together 3 tablespoons canola oil, balsamic vinegar, Italian seasoning and mustard.

When you are ready, heat the grill or grill pan over medium heat. Thread each skewer with 3 pieces of the sausage, 4 pieces of onion and green pepper and 2 pieces of the red pepper making sure to alternate the ingredients. Brush them with the oil and vinegar mixture and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Grill the skewers on both sides until they are hot and sizzling, about 6 to 8 minutes. Arrange them on a serving platter and serve with the grilled polenta.

Wednesday - Inside-Out Chicken Cordon Bleu 10/20

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3 tablespoons fig jam
1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
4 6-ounce skinless, boneless chicken breasts
1 cup shredded gruyere cheese (about 3 ounces)
8 thin slices black forest ham
5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 shallot, minced
1/2 teaspoon dijon mustard
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
2 cups baby greens

Mix the jam, thyme, and salt and pepper to taste in a bowl. Lay out a long piece of plastic wrap on a cutting board. Place the chicken on the plastic and brush half of the jam mixture evenly on top of each breast. Mound a quarter of the cheese on each piece of chicken, then wrap 2 slices of ham around each breast to cover the cheese. Place another piece of plastic over the chicken and gently pound with a mallet or heavy skillet until about 1/4 inch thick.
Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a medium nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook until golden and crisp, 3 to 4 minutes. Turn and cook on the other side until cooked through but still moist, 3 to 4 more minutes.
Meanwhile, whisk the shallot, mustard, vinegar and the remaining jam mixture in a medium bowl. Slowly whisk in the remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil to make a smooth dressing.
Place each piece of chicken on a plate and drizzle with dressing. Toss the greens with the remaining dressing; serve with the chicken.

Thursday - Black Bean Quesadilla 10/21

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2 burrito-size flour tortillas
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can refried low-fat black beans
1 cup chunky salsa
1 1/2 cups Mexican-style shredded cheese
1/2 cup prepared guacamole (from the refrigerated section)
2 tablespoons sour cream

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Lay 1 tortilla on a clean work surface. Spread the beans evenly over the tortilla. Spoon 3/4 cup of salsa over the beans, then sprinkle with the cheese. Top with the second tortilla. Place the quesadilla on a foil-covered cookie sheet.

Bake for approximately 15 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the top is crisp and brown. Meanwhile, swirl the guacamole and sour cream together in a small bowl. Cut the quesadilla into 4 equal portions and transfer to a plate. Serve with the guacamole mixture and remaining 1/4 cup of salsa.

Friday - Grits and Sausage Casserole 10/22

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1/2 pound turkey breakfast sausage
1 1/2 cups 1-percent milk
1 1/2 cups water
3/4 cup quick-cooking grits
3/4 cup (3 ounces) shredded reduced-fat sharp cheddar
3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
Dash of ground red pepper
3 egg whites, room temperature
Vegetable cooking spray
2 cups red bell pepper strips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Cook sausage in a non-stick skillet over medium-high heat until browned, stirring to crumble. Drain and set aside.
Combine milk and water in a saucepan; bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Stir in grits; cover, reduce heat and simmer 7 minutes or until thickened, stirring frequently. Combine grits mixture, sausage, cheese, parsley, salt, garlic, and peppers in a large bowl; set aside.
Beat egg whites at high speed of a mixer until stiff peaks form. Gently stir 1/4 of the egg whites into grits mixture; gently fold in remaining egg whites. Spoon mixture into a 1 1/2-quart casserole coated with cooking spray. Bake for 25 minutes or until set and lightly browned.
Coat a medium nonstick skillet with cooking spray and place over medium-high heat until hot. Add bell pepper, and saute 4 minutes or until tender; serve warm with grits