Add a little spice to family day with Pork Tenderloin With Asian Dry Rub. Heat oven to 425 degrees. Mix together 1 tablespoon packed light brown sugar, 1 teaspoon ground ginger, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves and 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper. Rub 2 (1-pound) pork tenderloins with mixture. Place pork in roasting pan; roast 15 to 18 minutes or until internal temperature is 145 degrees. Remove from oven; tent with foil and let stand 3 minutes. Cut into slices.
Serve with brown rice tossed with thinly sliced green onions and chopped cilantro. Add snow peas and chopped red bell pepper drizzled with sesame oil. Add a romaine salad and whole-grain bread. Make or buy apple turnovers for dessert.
Plan ahead: Save enough pork for Monday.
Use the leftover pork for Pork Tacos. Warm the pork and chop. To warmed corn tortillas, add the pork, fresh chopped cilantro, salsa and sliced avocados. Serve with canned reduced-sodium pinto beans and salad greens. Try pears for a light dessert.
Take it easy tonight and serve Chicken Stuffed Avocados. Stuff each avocado half with about 1/3 cup deli chicken salad; garnish with paprika. Serve tomato wedges and hard-cooked egg slices on the side. Add whole-grain rolls. Banana pudding is an easy dessert.
The kids won’t be able to resist Shepherd-Style Pie (see recipe) with its creamy mashed potato and cheese topping. Serve with green beans and bread sticks. Slice kiwifruit for dessert.
Plan ahead: Prepare Thursday’s baked pasta tonight.
Tonight’s Italian Baked Pasta (see recipe) should be ready to go in the oven. Serve the no-meat pasta casserole with a spinach salad and garlic bread. Peaches are good for dessert.
Chicken and Black Bean Chili is easy and good. Place 2 pounds trimmed boneless, skinless chicken thighs in a 4-quart or larger slow cooker. Sprinkle chicken with 1 packet ranch dressing mix. Add 2 (15-ounce) cans rinsed reduced-sodium black beans, 1 (15-ounce) can rinsed reduced-sodium cannellini beans, 1 (11-ounce) can rinsed whole kernel corn, 1 (10-ounce) can lightly drained Rotel tomatoes, 1 cup chunky salsa and 2 cups unsalted chicken broth. Cover and cook 6 hours on low. If too thick, add more broth.
Shred the chicken and spoon the chili over brown rice and garnish with reduced-fat sour cream and chopped cilantro. Serve with mixed greens and cornbread (from a mix). Enjoy plums for dessert.
Easy Entertaining Saturday
“Yum, yum!” was the response from our guests when they tasted Shrimp With Penne Pasta, Spinach and Nutmeg (see recipe). Serve the flavorful pasta with an Italian salad and whole-grain bread. Buy key lime pie for dessert.
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Shepherd-Style Pie (Wednesday)
1 (22-ounce) package frozen mashed potatoes (see Note)
1/2 pound lean ground beef
1/2 pound ground turkey breast
1 medium onion, chopped
1 cup frozen green peas and sliced carrots, thawed
2 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon coarse salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon pepper, divided
1 cup lower-sodium beef broth
1 lightly beaten egg
1/2 cup shredded 50 percent light cheddar cheese
Prepare potatoes according to directions; set aside. Heat oven to 350 degrees.
Meanwhile, cook beef, turkey and onion in a large nonstick skillet for 6 to 8 minutes or until meat is no longer pink. Drain and return to skillet; add peas and carrots. Stir in flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Add broth and cook, stirring constantly, 3 minutes or until slightly thickened. Spoon into an 11-by-7-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Mix together potatoes, egg, and remaining salt and pepper. Spoon over beef mixture. Bake 25 minutes; sprinkle with cheese and bake 5 more minutes. Serves 6.
Note: Prepare any potatoes with skim milk.
Per serving: 351 calories (percent calories from fat, 25), 27 grams protein, 38 grams carbohydrate, 3 grams fiber, 10 grams fat (4.4 grams saturated fat), 89 milligrams cholesterol, 817 milligrams sodium.
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Italian Baked Pasta (Thursday)
2 (25- to 28-ounce) jars no-salt-added or regular marinara sauce
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can diced tomatoes with basil, garlic and oregano, undrained
2 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning
1 pound multigrain penne pasta, uncooked
1 (8-ounce) package sliced crimini mushrooms
1 (8-ounce) package less-fat cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup reduced-fat sour cream
1 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
In a large bowl, combine marinara sauce, tomatoes with juice, Italian seasoning, uncooked pasta and mushrooms. With an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and sour cream on low until smooth. Spread half the pasta mixture in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray; spread the cream cheese mixture evenly over pasta mixture. Top with remaining pasta mixture; sprinkle with mozzarella cheese. Cover and refrigerate 24 hours.
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Cover with nonstick foil and bake 50 minutes. Uncover and bake an additional 10 minutes or until bubbly and cheese is browned. Serves 10.
Per serving: 319 calories (percent calories from fat, 29), 15 grams protein, 43 grams carbohydrate, 5 grams fiber, 11 grams fat (5.3 grams saturated fat), 30 milligrams cholesterol, 408 milligrams sodium.
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Shrimp With Penne Pasta, Spinach and Nutmeg (saturday)
12 ounces multigrain penne pasta
1 (10-ounce) package fresh baby spinach
1 tablespoon butter, divided
1 1/2 pounds large uncooked shrimp, peeled and deveined
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt, divided
2 1/2 cups chopped sweet onion (such as Vidalia or another sweet onion)
1 cup unsalted vegetable broth
1/4 cup dry vermouth
1 teaspoon lemon zest (yellow part only)
1/2 cup less-fat cream cheese
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Cook pasta according to directions; drain well. Return to pan and add spinach; toss well until spinach wilts. In a large nonstick skillet, melt half of the butter on medium-high. Add shrimp. Sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt; cook 3 minutes or until shrimp are opaque. Remove shrimp from skillet and cover; set aside.
Melt remaining butter in skillet over medium heat. Add onion; cook 10 minutes or until softened, stirring often. Stir in broth, vermouth and zest. Increase heat to medium-high; cook 8 minutes or until mixture begins to thicken. Reduce heat to medium. Add cream cheese; stir until well-blended. Stir in remaining salt, nutmeg and pepper; remove from heat. Add shrimp and onion mixture to pasta mixture; toss to combine. Serve immediately. Serves 6.
Per serving: 411 calories (percent calories from fat, 18), 36 grams protein, 49 grams carbohydrate, 6 grams fiber, 8 grams fat (4.1 grams saturated fat), 201 milligrams cholesterol, 530 milligrams sodium.