7-Day Menu Planner for week of Feb. 21

Tarragon Shrimp With Easy Risotto
Tarragon Shrimp With Easy Risotto

SUNDAY (Family)

For family day, serve your own roasted turkey breast and gravy along with apple cinnamon rice (see recipe) and green peas (frozen). Add mixed greens salad and crusty bread. For dessert, angel food cake and fat-free chocolate ice cream are a perfect pair. Plan ahead: Save enough turkey and cake for Monday and enough turkey and ice cream for Tuesday.

MONDAY (Heat and Eat)

Turkey corn chowder makes good use of leftover turkey. Mix together and heat (on medium) 2 (10 3/4-ounce) cans condensed cream of potato soup, 2 soup cans 1 percent milk, 1 (11-ounce) can no-salt-added rinsed corn, 1 1/2 cups chopped (cooked leftover) turkey and 1/2 teaspoon dried tarragon. Ladle into bowls. Add a spinach salad with red onion rings on the side and sesame bread sticks. Serve leftover cake with sliced peaches for dessert. Plan ahead: Save enough peaches for Wednesday.

TUESDAY (Express)

For a quick meal, black beans and rice fills the bill. In a large nonstick skillet, heat 1 tablespoon canola oil on medium-high. Add 1 (10-ounce) package refrigerated chopped onions and cook about 4 minutes or until softened. Add 1 cup quick rice with 1 cup water; bring to boil. Cover, remove from heat and let stand 5 minutes. Return to low heat and add 1 (1.31-ounce) package sloppy Joe seasoning mix and 1 (15-ounce) can reduced-sodium black beans (rinsed). Cook until hot. Stir in some leftover chopped turkey and serve. Add a packaged Caesar salad and warmed corn tortillas. Leftover ice cream is good for dessert.


Italian pot roast with red wine sauce (see recipe) is easy on the budget and packed with flavor. Serve with mixed greens and whole-grain rolls. Leftover peaches are a simple dessert.


The kids will learn their letters with alphabet bean soup. Add canned reduced-sodium black beans (rinsed) to canned alphabet soup for extra fiber. Prepare according to soup directions. Serve with peanut butter sandwiches on whole-grain bread. (Don’t forget to cut off the crusts!) How about celery sticks with some dip to munch on? For dessert, enjoy animal cookies.

FRIDAY (Meatless)

Try no-meat but “meaty” mushroom chili. Mix together 3 (8-ounce) packages sliced crimini mushrooms, 1 (15-ounce) can reduced-sodium kidney beans (rinsed), 2 (8-ounce) cans no-salt-added tomato sauce, 1 1/2 cups hot water and 1 (1.25-ounce) package less-sodium chili seasoning mix. Bring to boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until mushrooms are tender and flavors are blended. Serve with a lettuce wedge with sliced hard-cooked eggs and cornbread (from a mix). Slice kiwifruit for dessert.

SATURDAY (Easy Entertaining)

Tarragon shrimp with easy risotto (see recipe) will delight your guests. Add a romaine salad and french bread to round out the meal. Buy fruit tarts for dessert.


1 tablespoon butter

1 teaspoon cinnamon

2 medium apples, unpeeled, cored and chopped

1 cup toasted walnuts, coarsely chopped

1/2 cup chopped onion

1/2 cup sliced celery

3 cups cooked brown rice (cooked in equal parts water and apple juice)

1/4 cup water

1/2 teaspoon coarse salt

In a large skillet, heat butter and cinnamon on medium-high until butter is melted. Add apples, walnuts, onion and celery; cook 12 minutes or until vegetables are softened. Stir in cooked rice, water and salt. Heat through and serve.

Per serving: 175 calories, 4 grams protein, 9 grams fat (46 percent calories from fat), 1.6 grams saturated fat, 21 grams carbohydrate, 3 milligrams cholesterol, 114 milligrams sodium, 3 grams fiber.

Yield: 10 servings


1 1/2 pounds medium red potatoes, cut into 1-inch pieces

1/2 pound baby carrots

1 large onion, thickly sliced, separated into rings, divided

2 (0.87- to 1.2-ounce) packages brown gravy mix

1 1/2 tablespoons flour

2 1/2 teaspoons Italian seasoning

1/2 teaspoon celery salt

2 to 2 1/2 pounds lean boneless beef chuck roast, well-trimmed

1/2 cup water

1/2 cup dry red wine or unsalted beef broth

1 tablespoon dried parsley flakes

In a 4-quart or larger slow cooker, place potatoes, carrots and half the onion slices. Combine gravy mixes, flour, Italian seasoning and celery salt in a small bowl. Sprinkle half of mixture over beef. Turn beef and sprinkle with remaining seasoning mixture; cut beef into 8 to 10 chunks. Place in cooker and top with remaining onion slices. Combine water and wine and pour over all. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours or until beef is no longer pink and vegetables are tender. Add parsley flakes; stir. Remove beef and vegetables to serving platter. Spoon some sauce over all. Serve remaining sauce on the side.

Per serving: 338 calories, 33 grams protein, 7 grams fat (19 percent calories from fat), 2.6 grams saturated fat, 31 grams carbohydrate, 58 milligrams cholesterol, 566 milligrams sodium, 4 grams fiber

Yield: 6 servings


1 pound large shrimp, cleaned and deveined, tails on

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 tablespoon olive oil

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon dried tarragon

1/4 teaspoon coarse salt

1 tablespoon butter

1/3 cup chopped onion

2/3 cup uncooked Arborio rice

1 (14-ounce) can unsalted chicken broth

1 cup frozen peas, thawed

1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese

Lemon wedges for garnish

Pat shrimp dry with paper towels. Place in resealable plastic bag set in shallow dish. In small bowl, combine juice, oil, garlic, tarragon and salt. Add to bag; seal and turn to coat. Refrigerate 15 to 30 minutes. Meanwhile, in medium saucepan, melt butter on medium. Add onion; cook about 5 minutes or until softened; stir occasionally. Add rice; cook and stir 2 more minutes. Carefully stir in broth. Bring to boil; reduce heat, simmer uncovered, 15 minutes or until rice is tender but firm and risotto is creamy. Remove from heat. Stir in peas. Let stand 1 minute. Stir in parmesan. Set aside. Heat a large nonstick skillet on medium. Add shrimp and marinade to skillet. Cook 3 minutes on medium or until shrimp are opaque, stirring frequently. Serve shrimp with risotto; garnish with lemon wedges.

Per serving: 312 calories, 22 grams protein, 9 grams fat (27 percent calories from fat), 3.3 grams saturated fat, 33 grams carbohydrate, 155 milligrams cholesterol, 566 milligrams sodium, 3 grams fiber.

Yield: 4 servings