Menu planner: Chicken curry and rice, easy and delicious

Chicken curry and rice

Makes 4 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 35 to 40 minutes


1/2 cup flour

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (6 to 8 ounces)

1/2 teaspoon coarse salt, divided

1/4 teaspoon pepper

3 tablespoons of canola oil

2 carrots, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch pieces

1 onion, finely chopped

1 1/2 cup rice

2 garlic cloves, chopped

1 tablespoon of curry powder

4 cups sodium reduced chicken broth

1/2 cup light coconut milk

1 cup of frozen peas

1/4 cup fresh cilantro

2 tablespoons toasted flaked almonds

Spread the flour in a deep plate. Mash the chicken to an even thickness. Dry with paper towels; season with 1/4 teaspoon of salt and pepper. Dredge 1 chest lightly with flour; shake off excess. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until it sparkles. Cook the chicken 8 to 10 minutes or until lightly browned on both sides. Transfer to the plate. Heat the rest of the oil in the same pan. Add the carrots, onion and remaining salt and cook for about 5 minutes or until softened. Stir in the rice, garlic and curry powder and cook for 30 seconds. Incorporate the broth while scraping the golden pieces. Nestle the chicken in the pan with the juices. Lower the temperature simmer gently, cover and cook 8 minutes or until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 160 degrees. Transfer the chicken to a serving dish, brushing the sticky chicken rice in the pan. Tent chicken with foil when finishing the rice. Add the coconut milk to the pan, cover, cook 12 to 15 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed. Off the heat, sprinkle the peas over the rice, cover and let stand for about 2 minutes. Bend gently with coriander and almonds. Serve the chicken with rice.

Per portion: 466 calories, 32 grams of protein, 12 grams of fat (24% of calories from fat), 2 grams of saturated fat, 54 grams of carbohydrate, 83 milligrams of cholesterol, 343 milligrams of sodium, 3 grams of fiber.

Number of carbohydrates: 3.5.

Moroccan soup with vegetables and pasta

Makes about 8 cups

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: about 30 minutes


1 tablespoon of olive oil

1 medium onion, cut into thin wedges

1 garlic clove, minced

3 cups of water

1 pkg. (1 pound) frozen mixed vegetables

2 (14.5 ounce) cans no salt added diced tomatoes, with liquid

1 can (15-19 ounces) reduced sodium chickpeas, rinsed

2 teaspoons of dried basil

2 teaspoons of turmeric

2 teaspoons of paprika

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1/8 teaspoon cinnamon

2 tablespoons of ketchup

1/2 cup uncooked whole wheat rotini pasta or elbow macaroni

In a Dutch oven, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion; cook and stir 4 minutes. Add the garlic; cook for another minute. Stir in the water, mixed vegetables, tomatoes, beans, basil, turmeric, paprika, pepper, cinnamon and ketchup. Bring to a boil; lower the temperature; cover and simmer 8 to 10 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Add the rotini; cook, uncovered, 15 minutes or until rotini is tender. Dilute with additional water if desired.

Per cup: 148 calories, 6 grams of protein, 3 grams of fat (16% of calories from fat), 0.3 grams of saturated fat, 28 grams of carbohydrates, cholesterol free, 347 milligrams of sodium, 7 grams of fiber.

Number of carbohydrates: 2.

Unstuffed cabbage

Makes 6 servings

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: about 25 minutes


2 teaspoons of canola oil

1 pound ground turkey breast or 95% lean ground beef

1 medium onion, thinly sliced

3 garlic cloves, chopped

1 can (28 ounces) cooked tomatoes

1 can (6 ounces) no salt added tomato paste

1 1/2 cup water

3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

1/2 teaspoon of coarse salt

1 teaspoon of dried oregano

1 teaspoon of sugar

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1 pkg. (10 ounces) shredded cabbage (for coleslaw)

Heating the oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add turkey or beef; cook 6 minutes or until no longer pink, stirring occasionally. Drain, if necessary. Stir in the onion; cook for 4 minutes. Add the garlic; cook 1 min. Add the tomatoes and tomato paste. Stir in the water, parsley, salt, oregano, sugar and pepper. Simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in the cabbage; cook, covered, 6 to 8 minutes or until the cabbage is tender, stirring occasionally.

Per portion: 187 calories, 21 grams of protein, 3 grams of fat (14% of calories from fat), 0.3 grams of saturated fat, 18 grams of carbohydrate, 43 milligrams of cholesterol, 622 milligrams of sodium, 4 grams of fibers.

Number of carbohydrates: 1.

turkey enchiladas

Heat oven at 350 degrees. In a large bowl, combine 3 cups grated cooked turkey, 1/2 cup low fat sour cream, 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro, 1 chopped red pepper, 1 1/2 teaspoons garlic, 1 teaspoon cumin and 1/4 cup grated 50% light cheddar cheese. Stir in 2 cups green salsa. Spread 1 cup of mixture on bottom of 9×13-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Place about 1/3 cup of the chicken mixture in the center of 8 flour tortillas (6 inches). Roll and place seam down into the dish. Pour remaining mixture on top; cook, uncovered, 35 minutes. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup more cheese and cook 15 minutes more or until cheese is melted and bubbling.

turkey breast

Heat oven at 350 degrees. Peel, halve and cut 2 pounds of sweet potatoes into wedges. Line a baking dish with non-stick foil. In a large bowl, microwave 2 tablespoons of butter, cut into pieces, until melted; stir in 1/3 cup sugar, 1/4 cup orange juice, 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper and 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon. Microwave 1 to 2 minutes until syrupy. Add the potatoes to the bowl; pour syrup over potatoes and toss to coat well. Spread evenly over the dish. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, stirring once, until tender and glazed. Serve it with sweet and spicy sweet potatoes.

Crunchy Nacho Dogs

Heat oven at 375 degrees. Coat a cookie sheet with cooking spray. Unroll 1 can (8 ounces) refrigerated low fat croissant buns; separate the dough into 4 rectangles. Press firmly perforations to be sealed. Place 4 slices of light American cheese on rectangles. Place 4 low-fat, low-sodium hot dogs on top of the cheese. Fold short sides of dough on hot dogs; roll each one. Press the edges to seal. Brush the rolls with milk; roll in 1/2 cup crushed tortilla chips in the oven. Place the rollers seam down on a cookie sheet. Bake for 15 to 22 minutes or until golden brown.

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