It’s not your mother’s meatloaf, but olive tapenade meatloaf (see recipe) is just as flavorful and perfect for the family. Serve it with orzo tossed with fresh chopped parsley and butter. Add green beans with cherry tomato halves on the side of the plate to give it some color. Warm up whole-grain rolls. Strawberries with a dab of vanilla ice cream makes a good dessert. Plan ahead: Save enough meatloaf, olive tapenade and green beans for Monday.
MONDAY (Heat and Eat)
Make meatloaf sandwiches on sourdough bread. Spread one side of the bread with leftover olive tapenade and the other with low-fat mayonnaise; top with leftover meatloaf and romaine. Serve with leftover green beans. Fresh tropical fruit makes a good dessert.
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Chickpea and rice stew (see recipe) is packed with flavor and fiber. On the side, add sliced cucumbers in yogurt (plain) and whole-wheat pitas. For dessert, try apricots.
Boneless pork shoulder roast is an economical cut and makes great pulled pork. Try a barbecue-flavor seasoning packet for the slow cooker (such as McCormick’s or another brand), and you’re on your way to an easy, no-fuss meal. All you do is follow the directions on the packet. Serve with deli coleslaw and add shredded carrots to the mixture. Make or buy potato salad and add whole-grain bread. Peaches are a simple dessert. Plan ahead: Save enough pork and any carrots for Thursday; save enough peaches for Friday. Tip: Cut the pork into several chunks before adding to the slow cooker; take off as much fat as you can.
Use the leftover pork for barbecue pulled pork sandwiches on whole-grain buns. Serve with deli carrot salad, using any leftover carrots, and add baked chips to the plate. How about pears for dessert?
For a quick meal, look for a frozen spinach pizza (such as Amy’s or another brand). Serve it with packaged salad greens. Buy chocolate cake for dessert and serve it with leftover peaches. Plan ahead: Save enough cake for Saturday.
SATURDAY (Easy Entertaining)
It takes a little extra time, but crunchy walnut-crusted salmon fillets (see recipe) is a great entree for guests. Serve it with long-grain and wild rice (packaged), a bibb lettuce salad and baguettes. For dessert, leftover cake with raspberry sorbet is festive.
Olive Tapenade Meatloaf
Yield: 8 slices
1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
2 lightly beaten eggs
3/4 cup soft bread crumbs (about 1 slice bread)
1/3 cup (jar or can) olive tapenade (olive spread)
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Combine beef, eggs, bread crumbs, tapenade, onion powder, salt and pepper in a large bowl; mix lightly but thoroughly. Shape mixture into an 8-by-4-inch loaf; place on rack in broiler pan. Bake about 1 hour or until meatloaf's internal temperature registers 160 degrees. Let stand 10 minutes. Slice and serve with extra tapenade, if desired.
Per slice: 165 calories, 20 grams protein, 8 grams fat (44 percent calories from fat), 2.1 grams saturated fat, 3 grams carbohydrate, 93 milligrams cholesterol, 379 milligrams sodium, no fiber.
Chickpea And Rice Stew
Yield: 6 servings
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
3 medium onions, halved and thinly sliced
2 teaspoons cumin
2 teaspoons ground coriander
3/4 cup orange juice
4 cups unsalted vegetable broth
2 (15-ounce) cans reduced-sodium chickpeas, rinsed
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and diced
2/3 cup basmati rice
1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
In a large pan, heat oil on medium; add onions and cook 10 to 12 minutes or until softened and well-browned, stirring often. Add cumin and coriander and stir 15 seconds. Add orange juice and vegetable broth. Stir in chickpeas, sweet potato, rice and salt. Bring to boil; reduce heat to low and cover. Simmer 25 to 30 minutes or until rice is tender and potatoes are breaking down to thicken the liquid. Stir occasionally. Season with pepper. (The stew will be thick and will continue to thicken upon standing. Add more broth to thin, if desired, or when reheating.) Serve topped with cilantro. Per serving: 327 calories, 11 grams protein, 4 grams fat (10 percent calories from fat), 0.3 gram saturated fat, 63 grams carbohydrate, no cholesterol, 271 milligrams sodium, 9 grams fiber.
Crunchy Walnut-Crusted Salmon Fillets
Yield: 6 servings
1 cup walnuts
3 tablespoons dry breadcrumbs
3 tablespoons lemon rind, finely grated
1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
Coarse salt and pepper to taste
6 (4- or 5-ounce) salmon fillets, skin on
Dijon mustard to taste
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Place walnuts in food processor; coarsely chop. Add breadcrumbs, lemon rind, oil and dill; pulse until crumbly. (Mixture should stick together.) Season with salt and pepper; set aside. Arrange salmon skin-side-down on parchment paper-lined rimmed baking sheet. Brush tops with mustard. Spoon 1/3 cup of walnut crumb mixture over each fillet; gently press mixture into the surface of salmon. Cover with plastic wrap; refrigerate for up to 2 hours. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Bake fillets 15 to 20 minutes or until salmon is opaque throughout. Just before serving, sprinkle each fillet with lemon juice.
Per serving: 304 calories, 27 grams protein, 2 grams fat (57percent calories from fat), 2.5 grams saturated fat, 6 grams carbohydrate, 53 milligrams cholesterol, 114 milligrams sodium, 2 grams fiber.