People become really quite remarkable when they start thinking that they can do things. When they believe in themselves they have the first secret of success. ~ Norman Vincent Peale

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Weekly Menu

In my quest to have everything organized this year, I decided to start doing "meal planning" and have a weekly menu.  I'm trying to follow what is on sale, in season, etc.  Asparagus is on sale this week, so I tried to incorporate it into a lot of my recipes.

So, here is my menu this week:

Week 1 menu

Monday:  Asparagus soup with spinach/cranberry salad and biscuits
Tuesday: Taco Pita Pizza
Wednesday: Chicken Wraps with asparagus/tomato salad
Thursday: Bean/sweet potato burritos
Friday: Pumpkin Soup with asparagus side dish and homemade bread

Ingredient shopping list:
black pepper
sea salt
taco seasoning
chili powder

lemon juice
olive oil
brown sugar
red wine vinegar
Dijon mustard
Canola oil
prepared mustard
soy sauce

1 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 cups milk
5.5 cups plain yogurt
1 tablespoon sour cream
2 cups reduced fat cheddar cheese

4 red onions
4 lbs asparagus
(6 ounce) package fresh baby spinach
1 small bunch leaf lettuce
5 tomatoes (Roma)
10 grape tomatoes, halved
6 cloves of garlic - or one bunch
1 bunch of cilantro
1 lime
3 summer squash
3 zucchini
1 red bell pepper
1 yellow bell pepper
3 sweet potatoes

Canned Goods:
5 cups veggie broth
3 cans kidney beans
1 can pumpkin

1 12-oz. pkg. Ground Mexican seasoned turkey
4 chicken breasts (boneless, skinless)

4 whole wheat pitas
16 tortillas

1/2 cup dried cranberries


Asparagus soup

1 pinch of black pepper
2 t lemon juice
2 T butter
2 T flour
2 T sea salt
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 chopped onion
3 cups veggie broth
2 cups milk
2 cups yogurt
2 lbs asparagus

Place asparagus and onion in a large saucepan or stock pot with 1/2 cup vegetable broth. Bring the broth to a boil, reduce heat and let simmer until the vegetables are tender (about 6-8 minutes). Reserve 8 asparagus tips for garnish. Pour vegetable mixture into an electric blender and puree until smooth. Using the same saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Slowly add flour, salt, and pepper while stirring continuously. Cook for 2 minutes, being careful that the flour doesn’t brown. Stir in the remaining 2 1/2 cups vegetable broth and increase the heat to medium-high. Continue stirring until the mixture comes to a boil. Add the vegetable puree and milk to broth. Whisk in 1 cup of yogurt and lemon juice. Stir until heated through (careful not to boil to avoid curdling). Ladle into bowls and garnish with yogurt and reserved asparagus tips. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese if desired.

*Biscuits are just the canned variety this week. 

Cranberry Spinach Salad

(6 ounce) package fresh baby spinach
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/3 cup olive oil
3 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon sour cream
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard

In a bowl, combine the spinach, and cranberries. In a jar with a tight-fitting lid, combine the remaining ingredients; shake well. Drizzle over salad and toss to coat; serve immediately.

Taco Pita Pizza

1 12-oz. pkg. Ground Mexican seasoned turkey
4 whole wheat pitas
2/3 cups reduced fat cheddar cheese
1/4 cup mild salsa
1/2 cup shredded leaf lettuce
1/4 cup diced tomato
1/2 cup Brown Cow Plain Yogurt
2 tbsp. fresh cilantro, rough chop
1 tbsp. taco seasoning

Preheat oven to 350º F.
Place pitas on a non-greased cookie tray. Sprinkle each evenly with ground turkey, cheddar cheese and mild salsa. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until cheese is melted and pitas have crisped around the edges.
In a small bowl blend together plain yogurt, taco seasoning and cilantro, set aside until ready to use.  Top each pita with shredded leaf lettuce and diced tomato. Drizzle yogurt mixture over each taco pita pizza. Slice pizzas into 4ths and enjoy!

Grilled Chicken Wraps / Veggie Wraps

2 cloves of garlic
1 bunch of cilantro
1 cup plain yogurt
juice of one lime
1 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. black pepper
Salt to taste

Chicken Wraps
4 chicken breasts (boneless, skinless)
2 tsp. cumin
2 tsp. chili powder
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tbs. olive oil, divided
3 summer squash
3 zucchini
1 red onion
1 red pepper
1 yellow pepper
4 whole wheat tortillas

Dressing Place garlic and cilantro into a food processor and chop into semi-coarse pieces. Add yogurt, lime juice, chili powder and black pepper and blend. Adjust taste by adding salt. Chill and reserve.

Chicken Wraps Season chicken breasts by rubbing with cumin, chili powder, salt, pepper and 1 tbs. olive oil. Marinade chicken breasts for 30-40 minutes. While chicken is marinating, slice the squash lengthwise, slice onion into 1/4 inch rings, and toss squash, onions and whole peppers with remaining olive oil. Grill these items and then allow to cool. Peppers will take slightly longer, they should be grilled until they are black. Once peppers are blackened, rinse away the charred skin, and then slice into strips. Slice squash halves into 1/2 inch pieces. Grill chicken next, and once done, allow to cool, slice into strips. To serve, place grilled vegetables and chicken into a whole wheat tortilla and top with cilantro yogurt dressing.

Asparagus/Tomato Salad

2 tomatoes, chopped
4 tbs. plain yogurt
1 tbs. Dijon mustard
1 tbs. grated Parmesan cheese
1 lb. asparagus, tough ends trimmed

Steam asparagus for 5-7 minutes and transfer to an ice bath. Once cooled, cut asparagus into third. In a separate, medium size bowl, mix together yogurt, mustard and cheese. Add asparagus and tomatoes and toss. Serve cold as a side dish.

Sweet Potato Burritos

Canola oil
1 onion
4 cloves garlic
3 cans kidney beans
2 cups water
1T chili powder
1 t cumin
4 t prepared mustard
3 T soy sauce
3 mashed sweet potatoes (bake, then mash)
12 tortillas
8 ozs shredded cheddar

Preheat oven to 350
Sauté onion and garlic until soft.  Stir in beans and mash.  Gradually stir in water and heat until warm.  Remove from heat and add other ingredients.  Divide evenly between tortillas, top with cheese, fold as burrito and bake for 12 minutes.

Cream of Pumpkin Soup

1 1/2 cups yogurt
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
2 cups veggie broth
1 can pumpkin
2 Tbsp. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. lemon juice

Heat olive oil in a 2 1/4 quart saucepan. Add onion and cook for about 2 minutes.
Add broth, pumpkin, sugar, salt and nutmeg, and bring to a boil.
Reduce heat, and simmer for 15 minutes. Add lemon juice, and serve warm topped with dollop of yogurt.

Asparagus Side Dish

1 bunch fresh asparagus, trimmed
2/3 cup water
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
10 grape tomatoes, halved

Combine the asparagus and water in a 10 inch skillet and place over medium heat; cover.
Allow the asparagus to steam until tender, about 10 minutes; drain. Reduce heat to low and return the skillet to the heat. Drizzle olive oil over the asparagus; sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Add the grape tomatoes to the skillet and replace the lid. Allow to sit covered until the cheese melts and the tomatoes are slightly steamed, about 2 minutes.

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