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Weekday dinner inspiration: Reuben sandwich and more

Mon | Deli delight

We're not suggesting the Reuben Sandwich is diet food if made at home, but you might be able to cut the calories by using less dressing and butter for grilling or even subbing turkey "corned beef." A Reuben is a grilled cheese sandwich on rye with Thousand Island dressing, corned beef, sauerkraut and Swiss cheese. A cinch to make at home. Fresh fruit or potato salad on the side.

Tue | Mix and match

We're crossing our cuisines tonight for Greek Quesadillas. For a fast tzatziki sauce, mix 1 cup plain yogurt, 1 or 2 chopped garlic cloves, and a peeled, seeded and diced small cucumber. Set aside. Place a flour tortilla on a hot skillet and layer shredded mozzarella cheese, feta cheese, strips of roasted red pepper and chopped kalamata olives. Top with second tortilla. Let brown and then flip. Dollop with sauce. Green beans cooked in stewed tomatoes on the side.

Wed | Rotisserie chicken

Southwestern Lime-Chicken Hash (recipe below) makes use of the rotisserie bird in a fresh way. Substitute any leftover meat.

Thur | Think fast

Quick Shepherd's Pie can be on the table in about 30 minutes. In an ovenproof skillet, brown a pound of ground beef, drain, then add 1/2 cup ketchup and 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce. Add 1 cup of frozen mixed vegetables and heat through. Cover with heated microwavable mashed potatoes and a handful of grated cheese. Pop under the boiler until the cheese melts.

Fri | BBQ night

Grill pork chops tonight and slather with your favorite barbecue sauce. Broil tomato halves sprinkled with olive oil and fine breadcrumbs to serve alongside. Make a green salad, too.


Southwestern Lime-Chicken Hash

1/2 to 1 pound boned, cooked chicken, cut into 1/4-inch dice

Juice of 2 limes

1 large onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice

1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro, divided use

2 sweet red peppers, cut in 1/4-inch dice, or 1 1/2 cups of other vegetables

1 to 2 fresh jalapeno chili peppers, seeded, deveined and minced

2 large cloves of garlic, minced

1/3 cup vegetable or chicken broth or water mixed with 1 tablespoon tomato paste

2 1/2 pounds boiled and chilled red-skinned potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch dice

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Canola or extra-virgin olive oil

4 large eggs

Preheat oven broiler. In a large bowl, combine the chicken and the lime juice. Let stand while you gather the rest of the ingredients. Then add the onion, 1/4 cup cilantro, the peppers, garlic, broth or the water mixed with tomato paste, and the potatoes. Toss with salt and pepper.

Generously film with oil the bottom of a 12-inch skillet with an ovenproof handle. Heat over medium-high. Turn the contents of the bowl into the skillet and spread it out. Cook, adjusting heat as needed, to slowly crisp the ingredients (8 to 10 minutes). Use a spatula to turn pieces if they threaten to stick.

When vegetables are starting to brown, spread out the mix over the skillet so the bottom of the mix can crisp. Once golden brown, use the back of a tablespoon to make 4 small wells in the top of the hash. These will hold the eggs.

Slip the hash under the broiler for about 2 minutes to start it browning. Carefully remove it to a heatproof surface, break an egg into each of the wells, sprinkle with salt and pepper and broil another 1 minute, or until the egg white is firm and yolk is creamy.

Serve the hash hot, sprinkled with the rest of cilantro.

Serves 4 to 6.

Source: Scripps Howard News Service.

Weekday dinner inspiration: Reuben sandwich and more 02/17/09 [Last modified: Tuesday, February 17, 2009 3:30am]
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