Friday, May 15, 2009

Dinner Diva Menu Week of 5/17

This is my last post until June, as we are headed on a trip. Some good eats this week, though, and remember to browse previous posts for fill-in meals.

Sunday: I'm bringing in a meal that we were unable to make last week: see previous post for BBQ chicken (make extra chicken for Tuesday's meal)

Monday: Thai Chicken Wraps with Peanut Sauce

3 (6 oz) chicken breasts, grilled and sliced at an angle

1/2 seedless cucumber (also called English Cucumber), peeled, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced at an angle

2 cups fresh bean sprouts

1 cup shredded carrots (also called matchstick carrots)

3 scallions or green onions, sliced on an angle

12 leaves basil, chopped or torn

3 Tablespoons fresh mint sprigs, chopped

1 tablespoon sesame seeds

2 teaspoons sugar

2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar or white vinegar

salt, optional, to taste

bottled peanut sauce (found in the asian aisle at the supermarket) Feel free to add hot sauce to taste, if you prefer it spicier than you can find.

4 12 inch tortillas

Combine cucumber and next 8 ingredients. Toss well to coat. Toss grilled sliced chicken with veggies and herbs. In a very hot skillet heat tortillas 15 seconds on each side. Pile chicken and veggies in wraps and drizzle liberally with peanut sauce. Wrap and roll, serve immediately.

Tuesday: BBQ chicken Pizza, Marinated Cucumbers with Feta

BBQ Chicken Pizza
Prep: 5 min., Cook: 10 min. Using prepared chicken and commercial pizza crust gets this recipe on the table in only 15 minutes.
Makes 4 to 6 servings
1 (16-ounce) Italian cheese-flavored pizza crust (such as Boboli)
1/2 cup barbecue sauce, divided
2 pre-cooked chicken breasts, finely chopped (use the leftover BBQ chicken from Sunday's meal, or look for southwest flavored grilled chicken, such as Tyson)
1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) shredded Mexican four-cheese blend
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

Place pizza crust on a large baking sheet or pizza stone; spread 1/4 cup barbecue sauce over crust.
Combine remaining 1/4 cup barbecue sauce and chicken in a bowl, coating well. Spoon chicken mixture over crust; top with cheese and cilantro.
Bake at 450° for 10 minutes or until cheese melts.

Marinated Cucumbers with Feta:

Combine 2 cucumbers, thinly sliced, and 1/4 cup Olive Oil Vinaigrette. Cover and chill. Just before serving, sprinkle each serving with 1 Tablespoon crumbled feta; sprinkle with fresh ground pepper, if desired.

Wednesday (Vegetarian): Grilled Cheese with Artichokes, Gazpacho

Grilled Cheese with Artichokes

2 t. dijon mustard
4 sandwich rolls, split and toasted
8 slices American cheese
1 cup canned artichoke hearts, drained
8 slices tomato
2 T. light Italian dressing

Spread 1/2 t. mustard on split side of top half of each roll, and set aside

Place bottom halves of rolls on a baking sheet. Top each half with 2 cheese slices, 1/4 cup sliced artichoke, and 2 tomato slices; drizzle each half with 1 1/2 teaspoons dressing.

Broil sandwich halves 5 1/2 inches from heat, door partially open, 2 minutes or until cheese melts. Cover with tops of rolls.
4 servings

1 1/2 cups tomato juice
3 large tomatoes, quartered and seeded
1 small cucumber, peeled, quartered, and seeded
1 small green pepper, quartered and seeded
1 small onion, quartered
2 T. balsamic vinegar
1/2 t. salt
1/4 t. hot sauce
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup sliced cucumber
1/4 cup finely chopped green pepper

Position knife blade in food processor bowl; combine first 5 ingredients in bowl. Process until smooth; pour mixture in a large bowl. Stir in vinegar and next 3 ingredients. Cover and chill at least two hours. Top with cucumber slices and chopped green pepper. Serve chilled. (This soup only has 26 calories per 1/2 cup serving! Would be a great meal to take to work.)

Thursday: We've been doing neighborhood cookouts on Thursdays since the weather warmed up. In that light, I'll showcase another cookout menu for alfresco dining:

Grilled Vidalia Onion and Steak sandwiches, fruit salad, potato chips

Fruit Salad:
2 cups fresh pineapple, cut into bite sized pieces (about 1 small fresh pineapple)
3 kiwifruit, peeled and diced
1 pint fresh strawberries, hulled and halved
2 cups fresh red or green grapes
2 T. lemon juice
1 T. raw sugar

Combine all ingredients well, store covered in refrigerator until ready to eat. (Use any fruits you like; this happens to be our family's favorite combo.)

Zesty Fettuccine and Shrimp (10 minutes to make!), bagged salad, commercial sourdough bread

8 ounces fettuccine, uncooked
cooking spray
2 t. olive oil
2 t. blackening seasoning
3/4 pound peeled and deveined large shrimp
2 T. lemon juice
1 (14 1/2 oz) can diced tomatoes with roasted garlic, drained
1/4 t. pepper

Cook pasta according to package directions.

While pasta cooks, coat a large nonstick skillet with cooking spray, and add oil. Place over medium high heat until hot. Sprinkle blackening seasoning evenly over shrimp. Add shrimp to skillet; cook 2 minutes on each side or until shrimp turn pink. Stir in lemon juice. Add tomatoes and pepper; cook until thoroughly heated.

Spoon shrimp mixture over drained pasta, and serve immediately with a side of salad and a slice of sourdough bread.

Saturday: pizza night