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Published Sep. 16, 2009

Mon - Leftover takeout

You've got leftover fried rice from the weekend's Chinese takeout? Good for you, especially if you eat it rather than let it grow fuzz in the dark reaches of the fridge. Heat up the rice (my favorite is pork) and bolster the offering by topping it with a fried egg.

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Tues - Good-for-you pizza

Despite recent reports of one guy losing weight on an all-pizza diet, most of us don't have the saturated fat favorite in heavy rotation. For a healthier version, consider Green Pizza (recipe below), which is loaded with broccoli and arugula and thus healthy antioxidants.

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Wed - Rotisserie chicken

It's not exactly soup weather yet, but the kids are back in school and that makes me think of Chicken Noodle Soup. Make it easy by shredding the chicken and setting aside. Bring chicken broth and an equal amount of water to the boil (make sure you have more liquid than you think you'll need because it will get soaked up by the noodles). Reduce heat and add sliced carrots, celery and parsnips, plus a teaspoon of dried tarragon or thyme. Let cook for about 10 minutes then add a handful or two of wide egg noodles. Return chicken to heat through. Serve with crunchy bread sticks. Or grilled cheese sandwiches.

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Thurs - Skillet panache

Spaghetti With Shrimp and Bacon, a Martha Stewart inspiration, is ready in the time it takes the pasta to cook. While pasta is simmering, fry bacon slices in a large skillet. Remove and saute medium peeled shrimp, minced garlic and scallions in bacon drippings. Add some pasta water to make a sauce, then add drained pasta. Squeeze fresh lemon juice over all.

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Fri - Easy does it

Make it a party with appetizers tonight. Cold shrimp with cocktail sauce, hummus with pita chips and vegetable dippers, cheese cubes and fruit kebabs. Maybe even pick up sushi at the market.

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Green Pizza

1 pound prepared pizza dough, preferably whole-wheat

2 cups chopped broccoli florets

1/4 cup water

5 ounces arugula, any tough stems removed, chopped (about 6 cups)

Pinch of salt

Freshly ground pepper to taste

1/2 cup prepared pesto

1 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

Position oven rack in the lowest position; preheat to 450 degrees. Coat a large baking sheet with cooking spray.

Roll out dough on a lightly floured surface to about the size of the baking sheet. Transfer to the baking sheet. Bake until puffed and lightly crisped on the bottom, 8 to 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, cook broccoli and water in a large skillet over medium heat, covered, until the broccoli is crisp-tender, about 3 minutes. Stir in arugula and cook, stirring, until wilted, 1 to 2 minutes more. Season with salt and pepper.

Spread pesto evenly over the crust, top with the broccoli mixture and sprinkle with cheese. Bake until crispy and golden and the cheese is melted, 8 to 10 minutes.

Serves 6.

Source: Eating Well, October 2009