Friday, January 6, 2012

Meals for the Week of January 9, 2012

Happy New Year!
As much as I wanted to write a Christmas post, life got in the way.  I baked A LOT.  Between pie and cheesecake orders, homemade gifts and several big cookie and candy platters that were ordered, I was grateful to have cooked some meals ahead of time so that my family was not totally neglected.  On top of that, I came down with a nasty 24 hour flu 3 days before Christmas and from there it proceeded to take each one of us out one day at a time.

But now, it's a new year, it's unseasonably warm and it's time for new beginnings and new ideas.  I've got goals and ideas swimming around in my head and I'm going to put them in writing soon.  I'm also training for a triathalon in June.  That is probably the biggest goal I have ever set in my life.  I'm sure I'll be sharing some of that journey here, especially as it pertains to food and fueling for exercise.

For this week, I have some make ahead meals, some quick ones, a few that are lightened up versions of comfort food and a couple of extra recipes for breakfast and sides.  Have a great week!

Meals for the Week of January 9, 2012

Seared Chicken Salad with Green Beans, Almonds and Dried Cherries- If you need/want to eat lighter and healthier, this main dish salad is a good choice.  You can make the chicken in advance and prep the other parts of the salad.

Chicken and Dumplings-This is a healthy version of a traditionally very heavy comfort food meal.  The pastry flour in the dumplings is important for keeping them light and fluffy in texture.  Look for it in your bulk food section of your store.  Or in the baking aisle you may find Bob's Red Mill brand.

Farfalle with Sausage, Tomato and Basil- Very quick and easy, with such a variety of sausage available in stores, use your favorite. 

Crock Pot Taco Soup- Super easy to prepare, serve with warm tortillas or quesadillas and a salad.  The recipe does call for using taco seasoning mix and a ranch dressing mix.  Pay attention to the sodium content or unnecessary preservatives in those.  I like to use Pampered Chef’s  Southwestern Seasoning.  Costco also sells a good one and so does Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s. 

Spicy Turkey Sloppy Joes- A bit of a grown up version of Sloppy Joes.  They don’t have to come from a can, you can adapt the seasonings in this recipe for the taste buds in your house.

Chopped Greek Salad with Chicken- Here’s a good main dish salad that is also low calorie.

Ranch Parmesan Chicken- I like to make this as chicken strips instead of whole chicken breasts like the recipe calls for. They will also cook quicker than whole pieces. Highly recommend using panko breading for a lighter, crispier chicken. 

Spaghetti Pie- A bit of a change from the usual spaghetti and a great way to re-do leftover spaghetti.  Use your own homemade sauce or choose a jar sauce. 

Tuscan Kale, White Bean and Ciabatta Soup- The soup uses day old bread to give it a bit of thickness.  The recipe instructions is for using dry beans, you can skip that to use canned beans if you want.  It’s also very easily adaptable to adjust the spices and herbs to suit your tastes.  I would also suggest trying a rustic whole grain bread. 
Healthier Hamburger Helper- The Meal Makeover Moms have taken boxed Lasagna Hamburger Helper and re-done the dish in an easy, from scratch healthier version. 

Peanut Butter Oatmeal- Here's a change from what you might usually put in your oatmeal.  Yum! 

Savory Greens Stir Fry- This is a super-food side dish.  Winter greens like kale are in season right now and packed with health.  If you don’t want to buy mirin for this recipe, you may skip it or get less expensive rice wine vinegar. 
Peanut Butter Power Cookies- Here is a cookie that is a little lower in fat and has some extra fiber and protein. 

No comments:

Post a Comment