Sunday Strategist: A Week of Healthy Menus — June 16-20
Every Sunday, we publish a week of Cooking Light dinner plans filled with our favorite recipes. Each meal is designed to be ready and on the table in 45 minutes or less. This week we're featuring a few dishes from our July issue, which is on newsstands now.
The PlanMonday: Penne with Herbs, Tomatoes, and Peas and Herb Salad with Mustard VinaigretteTuesday: Open-Faced Fried Egg BLT Sandwiches and Warm-Spiced OkraWednesday: Grilled Chicken with Tomato-Avocado SaladThursday: Halibut and Peach Salad with Lemon-Mint Vinaigrette and Brown Rice with SesameFriday: Blackened Chicken Salad with Blue Cheese VinaigretteHappy Hour Bonus: Sweet Tea Mint Juleps
Monday: We're going to make the most of a few ingredients this week, chief among them tomatoes. Stock up, and prepare for some delicious dinners.
For Monday, we're going meatless with Penne with Herbs, Tomatoes, and Peas. If you've got a backyard garden or a container garden and a well-stocked pantry, you can probably pull this dish together without a trip to the grocery store. Finish it off with Herb Salad with Mustard Vinaigrette or a simple green salad.
Tuesday: More tomatoes tonight, though you could leave them off and still thoroughly enjoy these Open-Faced Fried Egg BLT Sandwiches. This is such a fast, delicious dinner, I suspect you'll find yourself making it many weeks this summer. It's an especially great dinner for using up leftover bits of other dinners. I love the addition of Warm-Spiced Okra. A touch of red pepper adds a a hint of heat, and curry gives the earthy okra a flavorful boost. You could use the same spice mixture on any number of vegetables if you're not a fan of okra.
Wednesday: Our local Whole Foods had avocados on sale five for $5 last Friday, and it felt like Christmas for me. I had to remind myself I couldn't use up a lot of avocado by myself quickly, so I resisted and just walked away with two--one for some guac and the other for our Grilled Chicken with Tomato-Avocado Salad. If you've got a gas grill, fire it up. If not, a grill pan inside will work well, too.
Thursday: Get a serving of seafood in with this quick salad, Halibut and Peach Salad with Lemon-Mint Vinaigrette. It's ready in just 20 minutes, so start the Brown Rice with Sesame before you begin cooking the halibut, and it'll all be ready about the same time.
Friday: Get excited! Blackened Chicken Salad with Blue Cheese Vinaigrette takes just 18 minutes to prepare. Use the other minutes you would typically need for a meal to make our Happy Hour Bonus.
Happy Hour Bonus: Let the tea for these Sweet Tea Mint Juleps steep while you're cooking dinner. When it's finished, immediately put it in the refrigerator to let it chill. Also, put the glasses in the freezer so they're nice and cold. Then, finish off dinner, pour yourself a glass, sit back and relax.