Weekday inspiration: Sausage Ragu Over Creamy Polenta and more

Mon | Italian pie

Make a Caprese Pizza using ready-made pizza crust or a Boboli base. Brush the crust with pesto, then strategically place rounds of fresh mozzarella and sliced tomato. Scatter with chopped fresh basil, if you like, and drizzle with olive oil. Bake for about 15 minutes at 350 degrees, or until cheese is bubbly. (Read directions on crust packaging to determine if the shells need to be baked first.)

Tues | Light and dreamy

Sausage Ragu Over Creamy Polenta (recipe below) packs a lot of flavor for a dish that's light. Just 350 calories or so for a comforting bowl of turkey sausage over creamy polenta. Don't fret making the polenta. Use your grits-stirring technique.

Wed | Rotisserie chicken

Used shredded meat in Quick Chicken and Dumpling Soup. In a covered stockpot, heat a box of chicken stock and add a can of cream of celery (or chicken) soup. Stir to combine then add half a bag of frozen mixed veggies. Stir in chicken. Dot the top with separated refrigerated biscuits; cover and simmer for about 15 minutes or until biscuits are cooked through.

Thurs | Fish delish

Crunchy Ranch Fish Fillets (use snapper, flounder, cod or tilapia) calls for just three ingredients, one of them being ranch dressing. Brush both sides of the fish with ranch dressing and then dredge through crushed store-bought seasoned stuffing, such as Pepperidge Farm or Arnold. Bake on an ungreased cookie sheet at 450 degrees for 8 to 12 minutes, or until fish is flaky. Serve with a green veggie and rice.

Fri | Hefty salad

Keep it simple in the kitchen tonight with a Charcuterie Salad. Toss cooked potato pieces with equally sized cubes of hard salami and smoked mozzarella cheese. Mix in chopped cornichons, those tangy, petite pickles. For the dressing, dollop on mayonnaise mixed with mustard. Serve over sturdy lettuce leaves, such as iceberg or Romaine.

Janet K. Keeler can be reached at jkeeler@tampabay.com or (727) 893-8586.

>>MODERATE

Sausage Ragu Over Creamy Polenta

3 links (4 ounces each) sweet turkey Italian sausage, casings removed

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 cup finely chopped onion

4 garlic cloves, minced

1 ½ cups lower-sodium marinara sauce

2 cups water, divided

1 cup whole milk

¾ cup instant polenta

1 ounce fresh pecorino Romano cheese, grated

teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

¼ cup coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add sausage and saute for 6 minutes, stirring to crumble. Remove sausage from pan and drain. Wipe pan clean then return it to medium-high heat. Add oil to pan and swirl. Add onion and saute 4 minutes. Add garlic and saute 1 minute. Stir in sausage, marinara and ⅓ cup water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat then simmer 20 minutes.

Bring remaining 2 cups water and milk to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium heat, then reduce heat to low. Gradually add polenta and cook for 3 minutes or until thick, stirring constantly. Remove from heat; stir in cheese and pepper. Serve with sausage mixture, topping with parsley.

Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional information per serving: 357 calories, 14g fat (5g saturated), 17g protein, 50g carbohydrates, 4g fiber and 712mg sodium.

Source: Cooking Light

Weekday inspiration: Sausage Ragu Over Creamy Polenta and more 01/24/12 [Last modified: Tuesday, January 24, 2012 3:30am]

© 2014 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...