menu planning, back in action!

okay y’all, i’m back in action and ready to attempt this menu thing again! :) here’s my plan for the week:

monday night: it’s football season. i am going to play this by ear. it’s an intense and epic game: Minnesota Vikings VS the Green Bay Packers. Brett Farve VS the Packers essentially…so i might just have to order some sloppy pizza and beers for this one.

tuesday: pork chops with apple, spinach & bean salad. this idea was inspired by this recipe from http://www.wholeliving.com

Ingredients

Serves 4

* 4 bone-in pork chops (about 9 ounces each)
* 2 teaspoons coarse salt
* Freshly ground pepper
* 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
* 1 cup (6 ounces) canned unsalted chickpeas, drained and rinsed
* 1 pound escarole, leaves torn
* 1 medium apple, preferably Gala, cored and cut into matchsticks
* 1 teaspoon lemon juice
* 1 tablespoon lemon zest

Directions

1. Sprinkle pork chops on both sides with 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, and season with pepper. Heat oil in a large high-sided saute pan over medium-high heat. Add pork chops. Reduce heat to medium, and cook until browned around the edges, about 4 minutes. Flip, and cook 3 to 4 minutes more. Transfer chops to a plate.
2. Add chickpeas to pan, and cook for 2 minutes. Working in 3 batches, add escarole and cook, stirring, adding additional batches as the leaves wilt. Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt, and season with pepper. Remove from heat, and stir in apple and lemon juice and zest. Serve with chops.

wednesday: lasagna & a salad…i forgot where i picked up this recipe, but i love lasagna & am looking forward to making it!

Serves 8
Ingredients

* Vegetable-oil cooking spray
* 1/2 cup chopped onion
* 1 pound ground turkey breast
* 3 cups tomato sauce
* 3 tablespoons Italian seasoning (or 1 tsp each dried basil, parsley, and oregano)
* 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
* teaspoon garlic powder
* 1/2 cup chopped mushrooms
* 6 cups chopped fresh spinach
* 2 cups fat-free ricotta
* 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
* 1 package whole-wheat lasagna noodles (about 8 oz, or 9 noodles)
* 2 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella

Preparation

1.
Preheat oven to 375°F. Spray a medium-sized nonstick skillet with cooking spray. Sauté onion for 2 minutes, then add turkey and cook an additional 5 to 7 minutes. Add tomato sauce, all seasonings and mushrooms and simmer 2 minutes. Remove pan from heat. In a bowl, combine spinach, ricotta, and nutmeg. Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Cook pasta according to package directions until al dente. Drain and rinse with cool water.
2.
For assembly
Coat a 9″ x 13″ baking pan with cooking spray. Arrange 1/3 lasagna noodles (3 noodles) on the bottom of the pan. Spread a layer of ricotta mixture, then turkey mixture, then 1/3 mozzarella. Repeat layers, ending with mozzarella. Bake 20ozzarella. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until cheese bubbles. Cool at least 5 minutes before cutting.
3.

The skinny: 310 calories per serving, 6 g fat (3.5 g saturated), 31 g carbs, 4 g fiber, 33 g protein

thursday: spicy orange glazed chicken & green beans, i found this easy and delicious recipe in October’s issue of Real Simple magazine (also available online).

Serves 4  Hands-On Time: 15m  Total Time: 45m
Ingredients

* 1/4 cup orange marmalade
* 1/2 teaspoon chili-garlic sauce (found in the Asian section of the supermarket)
* 8 chicken drumsticks (about 2 1/2 pounds)
* kosher salt and black pepper
* 1 pound green beans
* 1 tablespoon butter
* 4 corn bread muffins, warmed

Directions

1. Heat oven to 400º F. In a small bowl, mix the marmalade and chili-garlic sauce.
2. Season the chicken with 1⁄2 teaspoon salt and 1⁄4 teaspoon pepper. Roast on a foil-lined baking sheet until cooked through, 35 to 40 minutes, brushing with the marmalade mixture during the last 10 minutes of cooking.
3. Meanwhile, bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the green beans until tender, 4 to 6 minutes. Drain and toss with the butter and 1⁄4 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Serve with the chicken and muffins.

i’m not sure if i will cook this weekend, as i might be going out of town to visit my cousins for a very belated birthday celebration.  i’ll keep you posted on the progress of my menu planning!

<3 kt

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