A Holiday Dinner Made Easy:  THYME CORNISH HENS WITH SHREDDED CARROT – MUSHROOMS – ONION IN BROTH / SLOW COOKER FIELD PEAS & SNAPS WITH ONION / ROMAINE SALAD WITH VEGGIES IN OLIVE GARDEN SIGNATURE DRESSING / DRESSING WITH MUSHROOMS – ONION – PARSLEY / SQUASH CASSEROLE / GREEN BEANS WITH SLICED ALMONDS

Note:  This is a largely make-ahead (same day) dinner, using the refrigerator to keep food cold until time for the microwave.  The dinner is served informally, as a buffet from baking dishes, in order to keep the food as hot as possible after microwaving in sequence.

For 4:

–Cornish hens (2, split)

–shredded carrots (1 handful)

–onion (one-half, sliced)

–mushrooms (4 or 5, sliced)

–chicken broth (non-fat, low sodium)

–thyme

–salt and pepper

–olive oil

–field peas with snaps (packaged, frozen)

–onion (one-half, sliced)

–Bac’n pieces (soy bacon)

–squash (yellow, 2, medium)

–onion (one-half, sliced)

–breadcrumbs (plain, boxed)

–green beans (frozen, packaged)

–almonds (sliced, one-half small package)

–dressing (stuffing; I used Pepperidge Farm cornbread)

–mushrooms (4 or 5, minced)

–onion (one-half, minced)

–parsley (1 handful, minced)

–romaine lettuce (heart romaine, 5 or 6 leaves)

–carrots (shredded, 1 handful)

–green onions (2 stalks, chopped)

–tomato (medium, chopped, fresh)

–zucchini (1, sliced, fresh)

–broccoli florets (1 head of florets, cut small)

–Olive Garden signature salad dressing (bottled)

Note:  Thaw the Cornish hens in the refrigerator for 2 and one-half to 3 days.  If you have less time, submerge the hens in cold, salted water for an hour or two, no more.

1 – Prepare the field peas with snaps and onion right after breakfast.  Use one-half large package of peas, and one-half chopped onion.  Season with salt, pepper, Bac’n pieces, and olive oil.  Cook on low in the slow cooker for 5 hours, checking for tenderness at that point.  If more tender peas are desired, cook for an additional 30 minutes.  Then place the setting on warm until time for dinner.

2 – Also right after breakfast, prepare the salad in a mixing bowl.  Break 5 or 6 romaine (heart) leaves into bite-sized pieces.  Cut off the broccoli florets, being careful to make the pieces bite-sized.  Add 1 handful of shredded carrots to the bowl.  Chop 2 stalks of green onion.  Slice 1 zucchini.  Chop 1 medium tomato, season with salt, pepper, and basil.  Gently stir the salad.  Season with salt and pepper.  Place in the refrigerator.  (Salad dressing will be added later.)

3 – Slice a few mushrooms, and place in a long covered baking dish.  Slice half an onion, and also place in the dish.  With a very large knife and a fork to hold the hens, cut the Cornish hens into two parts, just to the right or left of the backbone.  Be very careful of your hands, as the hen may slip.  Place the hens in the baking dish.  Sprinkle shredded carrots, 1 handful, on top.  Season with salt, pepper, thyme, and olive oil.  Add chicken broth about one-third height of the dish.   Cover and place in the refrigerator.

TAKE A BREAK UNTIL AFTER LUNCH

4 – Place 3 cups of green beans in a covered baking dish with a little water.  Sprinkle a generous amount of sliced almonds on top.  Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Place in the refrigerator.

5 – Slice 2 medium yellow squash, and place in a covered baking dish, with NO water.  Slice one-half onion, and mingle with the squash.  Season with salt, pepper, and Bac’n pieces.  Sprinkle a small amount of plain breadcrumbs on top.  Season the casserole with olive oil.  Place in the refrigerator.

6 – Finely chop 4 or 5 baby bella mushrooms, and place in a covered baking dish.  Finely chop one-half onion, and place in the dish.  Finely chop 1 handful of fresh parsley, and place in the dish.  Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Add a little chicken broth.  Microwave on high for 3 minutes.  When finished, place 1 cup of plain cornbread stuffing in the dish.  Stir well.  Add more chicken broth to reach desired consistency.  Use a little more olive oil on top.  Place in the refrigerator.

SET THE TABLE AND THEN REST

7 – Microwave in this order to preserve most warmth:  Microwave squash casserole for 5 minutes; green beans, 6 minutes; dressing, 3 minutes; and then Cornish hens, 20 minutes.  Microwave the dressing again for 1 minute, if piping hot is desired.  Serve the field peas from the slow cooker, taking them away from heat at the last moment.

8 – Add Olive Garden signature Italian dressing to the salad.  Serve the salad as a first course, when there are about 10 minutes left for cooking the hens.  

–Cornish hens, squash, field peas, green beans, salad recipes original; dressing adapted from To the Taste of a King (fifties Louisiana cookbook).

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SALMON, POTATOES, & GREEN SALAD SEASONED WITH LEMON SLICES – DILL – MINCED GARLIC – OLIVE OIL

Note:  This dinner can be served as a salad entrée, with chunks of salmon, potatoes, and green salad stirred, gently, all together.

–salmon (size of 3 decks of cards, one-half pound)

–potatoes (2, medium)

–hearts of romaine lettuce (6 leaves)

–lemon (fresh)

–clam juice (or fish broth)

–lemon juice

–minced garlic (bottled; much superior to garlic powder)

–dill (fresh if possible)

–olive oil

–salt and pepper

1 – Scrub the potatoes and cut into 1 – inch pieces.  Add to an inch of water in a covered baking dish.  Season with salt, pepper, minced garlic, dill, and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 15 minutes.  When finished, keep covered to preserve warmth.

 2 – Place the salmon in a covered baking dish with a little clam juice.  Drench in lemon juice.  Season with salt, pepper, olive oil, and dill.  With a very sharp knife, slice a lemon, and then place the slices atop the salmon.  Microwave on high for 5 minutes.

3 – Wash and dry 6 leaves of hearts of romaine lettuce.  Break apart into bite-sized pieces.  Place in a mixing bowl.  Season with salt, pepper, lemon juice, dill, and olive oil.  Stir well.

4 – Serve the salmon hot, with the potatoes and salad as sides.  Or gently stir all together, after breaking apart the salmon into large chunks.

–recipes adapted from Real Simple magazine.

MINT CHICKEN & ROMAINE SALAD WITH FRESH PEACH & VIDALIA ONION IN LIME – BALSAMIC – OLIVE OIL SAUCE

–4 chicken tenderloins or breast strips

–mint (fresh if possible)

–romaine lettuce

–peach (fresh, 1, medium)

–Vidalia onion (one-half)

–lime juice (bottled)

–balsamic vinegar

–extra virgin olive oil

1 – Place one-third cup of extra virgin olive oil in a small mixing bowl.  Add one-half sliced Vidalia onion.  Season the sauce with 2 tablespoons of lime juice and mint (to taste).  Add a few drops of balsamic vinegar.

2 – Place the chicken in a covered baking dish with a little water.  Pour one-half of the sauce on top of the chicken.  Microwave on high for 5 minutes.

3 – Wash and dry 6 leaves of romaine hearts.  Place in a large mixing bowl.  Peel and chop 1 fresh peach.  Add the remaining sauce, and stir well.  If necessary, add additional extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

4 – Serve the chicken hot, with the salad as a side.  I also served lima beans and squash with onions and Bac’n pieces (recipes, see the search box).

–chicken and salad adapted from Real Simple magazine.

GARLIC – HERB CHICKEN TENDERS WITH MISSISSIPPI COMEBACK DIPPING SAUCE / SPRING MIX WITH STRAWBERRIES & HONEY – BLUEBERRIES – FETA – PECANS IN BALSAMIC VINEGAR – EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL DRESSING / PARMESAN CAULIFLOWER WITH WHITE SAUCE

Note:  Mississippi comeback dipping sauce originated in Greek restaurants in Jackson, Mississippi in the thirties.  It has remained popular in the Deep South ever since, encouraging a “come back” for more.

 –4 chicken tenderloins or breast strips

–garlic – herb breadcrumbs

–comeback dipping sauce (see recipe below)

–spring mix salad greens

–strawberries (6 to 8, sliced and dipped in honey)

–blueberries (1 handful)

–feta cheese (one-half small carton)

–pecans (one-half small package)

–balsamic vinegar

–extra virgin olive oil

–cauliflower (1 head, fresh)

–milk (dairy or almond; soy doesn’t do well in the microwave)

–flour

–salt and pepper

–olive oil

1 – Prepare Mississippi comeback dipping sauce ahead of time to allow flavors to meld.  The recipe:

1 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup chili sauce

2 tablespoons ketchup

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 teaspoon smoked paprika

2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon hot sauce

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon onion powder

1/2 teaspoon dry mustard

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Place in the refrigerator until time for dinner.  May be kept safely for up to a week.

 2 – Wash and cut apart the cauliflower into large chunks.  Place in a covered baking dish.  In a microwaveable cup, place one-half cup of dairy or almond milk, and then microwave on high for 45 seconds.  In a second cup, place 1 tablespoon of flour.  Add the milk to the flour very slowly, stirring briskly.  Then pour the white sauce over the cauliflower.  Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Sprinkle Parmesan cheese over the top.  Microwave on high for 15 minutes.  If sauce appears to be too thick, add chicken broth to desired consistency.

3 – Place one-half package of spring mix to a mixing bowl.  Add 6 to 8 sliced strawberries that have been marinated in honey.  Add 1 handful of blueberries.  Add one-half package of pecan chips.  Add one-half small carton of feta cheese.  Season with salt and pepper.  Wait to add dressing until just before dinner.  At that time, add balsamic vinegar and extra virgin olive oil to taste.  Stir well.

4 – Place the chicken tenders in a plastic bag.  Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Pour a small amount of garlic – herb breadcrumbs into the bag.  Shake well.  Place the tenders in a covered baking dish with a little water.  Microwave on high for 5 minutes.

5 – Serve the salad as a first course.  Then serve the chicken tenders hot, the comeback sauce cold, with the cauliflower as a side.  I also served baby lima beans (for recipe, use the search box on this blog).

–comeback sauce retrieved from “my recipes” web site; other recipes original.

A Holiday Dinner for 2:  BACON – FLAVORED CORNISH HENS WITH MUSHROOMS & ONION IN BROTH / PARSLEYED DRESSING WITH MINCED MUSHROOMS & ONIONS / WHIPPED SWEET POTATOES WITH CINNAMON / ASPARAGUS IN PARMESAN WHITE SAUCE / BUTTER LETTUCE WITH GREEN GRAPES – FETA CHEESE – TOASTED WALNUTS IN BALSAMIC VINEGAR & EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL

Note:  Allow 90 minutes of preparation time for this dinner, even if you are an experienced cook.

–Cornish hen (thawed from frozen)

–Bac’n pieces

–mushrooms (divided, baby bellas, 6 to 8)

–onion (divided, three quarters of a medium onion)

–chicken broth (non-fat, low sodium)

–Stovetop stuffing mix (boxed, chicken flavor)

–parsley (fresh if possible)

–sweet potatoes (2, medium)

–cinnamon (bottled)

–asparagus (steamable in microwave; I use PicSweet)

–flour

–milk (dairy or almond; soy doesn’t work well in microwave)

–Parmesan cheese

–butter lettuce (one-half package)

–green grapes (seedless, about a dozen, split)

–feta cheese (half a small container)

–toasted walnuts (toast in microwave, 1 handful)

–balsamic vinegar

–extra virgin olive oil

1 – Place one-half package of butter lettuce in a mixing bowl.  Add a dozen grapes, each cut into two pieces.  Add half a small container of feta cheese.  Add 1 handful of toasted walnuts.  Season with salt and pepper.  Place in refrigerator until just before dinner.

2 – Slice 6 baby bella mushrooms into fine strips.  Add to a large, covered baking dish.  Slice one-half onion, and add to the dish.  Add a small amount of chicken broth.  Season with salt, pepper, Bac’n pieces, and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 3 minutes. 

3 – Using a sharp butcher knife and a fork, cut the Cornish hen in half.  Lay each half on its side, atop the mushrooms and onion.  Season with salt, pepper, Bac’n pieces, and olive oil.  Set aside.

4 – Scrub the sweet potatoes, and then pierce all around with a fork.  Place on a microwaveable dish.  Microwave for 7 minutes; then turn over, and microwave for 8 minutes more.  Test sweet potatoes during cooking to see when they are soft to the touch.  (Be careful; potatoes will be very hot.)  Let cool briefly before handling.

5 – Mince 2 mushrooms (baby bellas) and one-quarter onion.  Place in individual microwaveable bowls with a little chicken broth.  Microwave on high for 1 minute.  Set aside.

6 – Place one-half cup of milk in a microwaveable cup.  In a separate cup, place one level tablespoon of flour.  Microwave the milk for 45 seconds.  Slowly add the milk to the flour, beating briskly.  Pour the milk and flour into a covered baking dish.  Sprinkle a generous amount of Parmesan cheese on top.  Microwave on high for 3 minutes. 

7 – Cut open the sweet potatoes, and then cut crossways to make chunks.  Add to a food processor.  Add milk (dairy or almond) to the food processor.  Pulse until smooth, adding milk to desired consistency.  Place the whipped sweet potatoes in a microwaveable baking dish for reheating later, before dinner.

8 – Microwave the steamable package of asparagus for 3 and one-half minutes.  Add the asparagus to the Parmesan white sauce.  Keep covered to preserve warmth.

9 – Microwave the Cornish hen for 5 minutes.  Then turn over, sprinkle more Bac’n pieces on top, and microwave for 5 minutes more.

10 – Microwave the whipped sweet potatoes for 2 minutes on high.

11 – Add Stovetop dressing to the individual microwaveable bowls with the minced mushrooms and onion.  Stir.  Add chopped parsley to the top.  Microwave on high for 1 minute.

12 – Add balsamic vinegar and extra virgin olive oil to the salad.  Fold gently.

13 – Serve the salad as a first course.  Then serve the Cornish hen, one half to each person, with the dressing, sweet potatoes and asparagus as sides.

–dressing adapted from my mother-in-law’s recipe, from To the Taste of a King; other recipes original.

BREADED TUNA STEAKS WITH LEMON – PARSLEY – GARLIC IN MUSHROOM & WHITE WINE SAUCE / BUTTER LETTUCE WITH SUMMER SQUASH – MUSHROOMS – GREEN ONIONS – FETA IN HONEY MUSTARD DRESSING / BACON – FLAVORED SPECKLED BUTTER BEANS / ASPARAGUS SERVED NATURALLY

–tuna steak (1 large)

–breadcrumbs (boxed, plain)

–lemon juice

–parsley (fresh if possible)

–mushrooms (divided, fresh, baby bellas, 5 or 6, sliced)

–white wine (cooking wine is fine)

–butter lettuce (one-third package)

–summer squash (1, medium, sliced)

–green onions (sliced, fresh, 3 stalks)

–feta cheese (one-third small package)

–honey mustard dressing

–speckled butter beans (frozen, packaged)

–Bac’n pieces

–salt and pepper

–olive oil

–asparagus (fresh, 8 to 10 stalks)

–salt and pepper

–olive oil

1 – Place two-thirds cup of speckled butter beans in a slow cooker with water just to cover.  Season with salt, pepper, Bac’n pieces, and olive oil.  Cook on low for 6 hours; then keep on “warm” setting until time for dinner.

2 – Slice 3 or 4 baby bella mushrooms, and place in a covered baking dish with a little white wine.  Microwave on high for 2 minutes.  Place 1 large tuna steak in a plastic bag.  Season with salt, pepper, garlic powder, lemon juice, and olive oil.  Pour a small amount of breadcrumbs in the plastic bag.  Shake well.  Then nestle the tuna steak amid the mushrooms in the wine sauce.  Sprinkle parsley on top.  Set aside.

3 – Place one-third package of butter lettuce in a mixing bowl.  Add 1 sliced, medium, summer squash; 3 stalks, sliced of green onions; and one-third package of feta cheese.  Season with salt and pepper.  Stir well.  Add honey mustard dressing and stir just before serving dinner.

4 – Place 8 to 10 stalks of asparagus in a covered baking dish with a little water.  Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 3 minutes.

5 – Microwave the tuna for 3 minutes, no longer to avoid dryness.

6 – Serve the salad as a first course.  Then serve the tuna hot with the butter beans and asparagus as sides.

–tuna steaks adapted from Edward Giobbi’s Eat Right, Eat Well—the Italian Way; other recipes original.

BREADCRUMB – COVERED COD WITH GARLIC & PARSLEY IN SHERRY SAUCE / BUTTERED WHITE CORN / BUTTER LETTUCE WITH MUSHROOMS – SUMMER SQUASH – CHICKPEAS – GREEN ONIONS IN RED WINE – EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL DRESSING

–cod (size of 3 decks of cards, one-half pound)

–garlic powder

–parsley

–breadcrumbs (plain, boxed)

–sherry (cooking sherry is fine)

–white corn (frozen)

–Promise Activ margarine (heart-healthy)

–butter lettuce (packaged)

–mushrooms (baby bellas, 3 or 4, sliced)

–summer squash (1, small)

–chickpeas (1 handful)

–green onions (2 bunches, sliced)

–red wine (cooking wine is fine)

–extra virgin olive oil

–salt and pepper

–olive oil

1 – Place the cod in a covered baking dish with a small amount of sherry.  Season with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and olive oil.  Sprinkle a small amount of breadcrumbs on top.  Then sprinkle cut parsley on top.  Set aside.

2 – Place one-half package of butter lettuce in a mixing bowl.  Slice 3 or 4 baby bella mushrooms, and add to the bowl.  Peel and slice 1 summer squash, and add to the bowl.  Add 1 handful of chickpeas.  Slice 2 stalks of green onions, and add to the bowl.  Stir well.  Wait until just before serving to add dressing of red wine and extra virgin olive oil.  Stir.

3 – Add two-thirds cup of white corn to a covered baking dish with a little water.  Season with salt, pepper, and margarine.  Microwave on high for 4 minutes.

4 – Microwave the cod for 6 minutes on high.  Cod is done when it begins to break apart.

5 – Serve the salad as a first course.  Then serve the cod hot, with the corn as a side.

–cod adapted from a lobster recipe in Edward Giobbi’s Eat Right, Eat Well—the Italian Way; other recipes original.

PARSLEYED CHICKEN & POTATOES WITH ONION & GARLIC / BRUSSEL SPROUTS WITH ONION / SPRING MIX SALAD WITH GREEN GRAPES – FETA – WALNUTS WITH RED WINE – EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL DRESSING

–4 chicken tenderloins or breast strips

–parsley (fresh if possible)

–small Dutch potatoes (8 or 10)

–onion (1, divided, chopped)

–garlic powder

–plain breadcrumbs

–salt and pepper

–olive oil

–Brussel sprouts (fresh, packaged)

–spring mix salad

–seedless green grapes (1 bunch)

–feta cheese (one-half small carton)

–walnuts (1 handful)

–red wine (not cooking wine)

–extra virgin olive oil

1 – Place potatoes in a covered baking dish with 1 inch of water.  Season with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 8 minutes.  When finished, chop one-half onion, and place in the dish.  Microwave for 3 minutes.  Place the chicken in a plastic bag.  Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Then add a small amount of plain breadcrumbs.  Shake well. Nestle the chicken amid the potatoes and onion.  Sprinkle parsley on top.  Set aside.

2 – Cut in half each Brussel sprout.  Add to a covered baking dish.  Chop one-half onion and add to the dish.  Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 15 minutes.

3 – Add one-half package of spring mix salad greens to a mixing bowl.  Add one bunch seedless green grapes (cut in half if desired), one-half small carton of feta cheese, and 1 handful of walnuts.  Season with salt and pepper.  Add red wine and extra virgin olive oil as a salad dressing, to taste.  Stir well.

4 – Microwave the chicken and potatoes for 6 minutes.

5 – Serve the salad as a first course.  Then serve the chicken dish hot, with the Brussel sprouts as a side.

–chicken adapted from To the Taste of a King; other recipes original.

TARRAGON COD WITH GARLIC & LEMON IN WHITE WINE SAUCE / DUTCH POTATOES / TARRAGON GREEN PEAS WTH MUSHROOMS & ONION / GREEN SALAD WITH TOMATO – ZUCCHINI – BANANA PEPPER IN ITALIAN DRESSING

–cod (size of 3 decks of cards, one-half pound)

–tarragon (fresh if possible)

–garlic powder

–lemon juice

–white wine (cooking wine is fine)

–plain breadcrumbs

–salt and pepper

–olive oil

–Dutch potatoes (small)

–green peas (packaged, steamable)

–mushrooms (6 to 8, sliced)

–onion (one-half, chopped)

–salad greens

–tomato (medium, fresh)

–basil (fresh if possible)

–zucchini (1, small)

–banana pepper (one-half)

–Italian salad dressing

1 – Place 8 to 10 small Dutch potatoes in a covered baking dish with 1 inch of water.  Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 10 minutes.  When finished, keep covered to preserve warmth.

2 – Place cod in a covered baking dish.  Drench in lemon juice; then add a little white wine.  Season with salt and pepper.  Sprinkle with plain breadcrumbs, and then with tarragon.  Pour a few drops of olive oil on top.  Set aside.

3 – Wash and slice mushrooms; place in covered baking dish with a very small amount of water.  Add one-half chopped onion.  Season with salt, pepper, olive oil, and tarragon.  Microwave on high for 4 minutes.  Microwave a steamable package of green peas for 5 and one-half minutes.  Let sit 1 minute.  Then pour green peas atop the mushrooms and onion.  Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Stir gently.  Keep covered to preserve warmth.

4 – Place one-half package of salad greens in a mixing bowl.  Wash and then chop a medium-sized tomato.  Season the tomato with salt, pepper, and basil.  Place in the bowl.  Add 1 chopped zucchini and one-half chopped banana pepper.  Season the salad greens and vegetables with salt and pepper.  Add Italian salad dressing to taste.  Stir well.

5 – Microwave the cod for 6 minutes on high.

6 – Serve the salad as a first course.  Then serve the cod hot, with the green peas and potatoes as sides.

–recipes original.

PARSLEYED PARMESAN COD COVERED IN BREADCRUMBS WITH THYME – BAY LEAVES – GREEN ONIONS IN WHITE WINE – ONION SAUCE / GREEN SALAD WITH TOMATO – ZUCCHINI – FETA – GREEN ONIONS / PARSLEYED BABY BUTTER BEANS WITH TOMATO & POTATOES IN BROTH

Note:  Julia Child’s recipe was originally intended for scallops.

 

–cod (size of 3 decks of cards, one-half pound)

–parsley and thyme (fresh if possible)

–bay leaves (bottled)

–onion (one-half, chopped)

–white wine (cooking wine is fine)

–plain breadcrumbs (boxed)

–salad greens

–tomatoes (2, divided)

–zucchini (1, fresh)

–feta cheese

–green onions (6, divided)

–your favorite salad dressing

–baby butter beans (dried; soak overnight)

–potatoes (small yellow Dutch, 4)

–chicken broth (non-fat, low sodium)

1 – Place two-thirds cup of baby butter beans in a slow cooker.  Add 1 and one-third cup of chicken broth.  Chop 1 tomato and add to the cooker.  Slice 4 small potatoes into 1-inch pieces, and add to the cooker.  Season with salt (1 teaspoon), pepper, Bac’n pieces, and parsley.  Cook on low for 6 hours.  When finished, keep setting on “warm” until time for dinner.

2 – Place one-half package of salad greens in a mixing bowl.  Chop 1 medium tomato, and add to the bowl.  Peel and slice the zucchini, and add.  Add one-half small carton of feta cheese.  Wash and slice 2 stalks of green onion into one-half inch each.  Add your favorite salad dressing.  Stir well.

3 – Chop one-half onion and add to a covered baking dish.  Season with salt, pepper, thyme, bay leaves, and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 3 minutes.  When finished, add cod to the white wine.  Season with salt, pepper, thyme, and olive oil.  Sprinkle plain breadcrumbs on top.  Then sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.  Add chopped parsley on top.  Microwave on high for 6 minutes.

4 – Serve the salad as a first course.  Then serve the cod hot, with the baby butter beans as a side.

–cod adapted from Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking; butter beans adapted from Edward Giobbi’s Eat Right, Eat Well—the Italian Way; salad original.

CHICKEN WITH CARROTS AND ONION IN BROTH GRAVY / GREEN SALAD WITH AVOCADO – TOMATO – ZUCCHINI IN GINGER – SESAME DRESSING

–4 chicken tenderloins or breast strips

–chicken broth (non-fat, low sodium)

–shredded carrots (packaged, fresh)

–onion (one-half, fresh, medium)

–salt and pepper

–olive oil

–green salad (packaged)

–avocado (1, fresh, chopped)

–tomato (fresh, large, 2 slices, chopped)

–zucchini (1, fresh, sliced)

–ginger – sesame dressing (Paul Newman)

1 – Pour one-half cup of chicken broth in a microwaveable cup.  Microwave for 45 seconds.  Place 1 heaping teaspoon of flour in a second cup.  Slowly add the heated chicken broth to the flour, stirring vigorously.  Set aside. 

2 – Place 2 handfuls of shredded carrots in a covered baking dish.  Chop one-half onion and add to the baking dish.  Then pour the chicken broth/flour into the baking dish.  Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 3 minutes.  When finished, nestle the chicken amid the carrots and onion.  Season the chicken with salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Set aside.

3 – Add one-half package of green salad to a mixing bowl.  Chop 2 slices of a large tomato; then season with salt and pepper, and add to the bowl.  Peel and slice the zucchini, and add to the bowl.  Add, to taste, the ginger – sesame salad dressing.  Stir to mix well.  Then fold in a chopped avocado.

4 – Microwave the chicken for 6 minutes on high.

–chicken adapted from Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking; salad original.

BACON – FLAVORED CHICKEN TOPPED BY GREEN ONIONS AND WITH MUSHROOMS – TARRAGON – GARLIC IN WHITE WINE – BRANDY SAUCE / ASPARAGUS WITH LEMON ZEST / BUTTER LETTUCE SALAD WITH CARROTS – TOMATO – YELLOW SQUASH IN SESAME – GINGER DRESSING

–4 chicken tenderloins or breast strips

–Bac’n pieces

–green onions (2 stalks)

–mushrooms (baby bellas, 6 to 8)

–tarragon (fresh if possible)

–white wine (cooking wine is fine)

–brandy (buy a small, inexpensive bottle)

–garlic powder

–asparagus (fresh, 10 stalks)

–lemon zest (lemon peel, bottled)

–salt and pepper

–olive oil

–butter lettuce (one-half package)

–miniature carrots (about a dozen)

–tomato (1, medium, fresh)

–yellow squash (2, small)

–sesame – ginger dressing (I used Paul Newman’s)

1 – Wash and quarter the mushrooms.  Place in a covered baking dish with a little white wine and a little brandy.  Season with salt, pepper, tarragon, garlic powder, and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 3 minutes.  Nestle the chicken amid the mushrooms.  Season with salt, pepper, Bac’n pieces, tarragon, garlic powder, and olive oil.  Cut the green onion stalks into one-half inch pieces.  Sprinkle atop the chicken and mushrooms.  Set aside.

2 – Place the asparagus in a covered baking dish with a little water.  Season with salt, pepper, lemon zest, and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 4 minutes.

3 – Place one-half package of butter lettuce in a mixing bowl.  Slice the miniature carrots into one-fourth inch pieces.  Chop the tomato, and then season with salt and pepper.  Peel and slice the squash into small pieces.  Place all vegetables in bowl with the lettuce.  Season with salt and pepper.  Add sesame – ginger dressing to taste.  Stir well.

4 – Microwave the chicken for 5 and one-half minutes on high.

5 – Serve the salad as a first course.  Then serve the chicken hot, with the asparagus as a side.

–chicken adapted from Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking; other recipes original.

ROSEMARY & PARSLEYED CHICKEN WITH CAULIFLOWER – TOMATO – BLACK OLIVES IN WHITE WINE SAUCE / SPINACH – SPRING MIX SALAD WITH MUSHROOMS – TOMATO – SUMMER SQUASH – FETA IN RED WINE – OLIVE OIL DRESSING

–4 chicken tenderloins or breast strips

–rosemary (fresh if possible)

–parsley (fresh if possible)

–cauliflower (1 head, florets only)

–tomato (divided, 2, small, fresh)

–black olives (sliced, one-half can)

–white wine (cooking wine is fine)

–garlic salt

–salt and pepper

–olive oil

–spinach – spring mix greens (packaged)

–mushrooms (baby bellas, fresh, 6 to 8, sliced)

–summer squash (1, small, fresh)

–red wine (cooking wine is fine)

–feta cheese (one-half small container)

1 – Wash and slice the florets off 1 head of cauliflower.  Place in a covered baking dish with 1 inch of water.  Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 10 minutes.  Set aside.

2 – In a very large baking dish, place 1 tomato, chopped, and one-half can of sliced black olives in a little white wine.  Season with rosemary, parsley, salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 3 minutes.  Spoon cooked cauliflower into the dish.  Stir.  Place chicken on top.  Season the chicken with salt, pepper, rosemary, parsley, and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 9 minutes.

3 – Place one-half package of spinach – spring mix in a mixing bowl.  Wash and slice 6 to 8 mushrooms, and add to the bowl.  Chop 1 tomato, season with salt and pepper, and place in the bowl.  Peel and chop 1 summer squash, and place in the bowl.  Add one-half small container of feta cheese.  Season the salad with salt and pepper.  Add one-fourth cup of red wine and, to taste, olive oil.  Stir well.

4 – Serve the salad as a first course, then serve the chicken and cauliflower hot.

–chicken adapted from Ed Giobbi’s Italian Family Cooking; salad original.

FETA SALMON WITH TARRAGON & LEMON PEPPER / LEMONY ASPARAGUS / BABY SALAD GREENS WITH PEANUTS – TOMATO – BROCCOLI – BANANA PEPPER IN HONEY & OLIVE OIL DRESSING

–salmon (size of 3 decks of cards, one-half pound)

–tarragon (fresh if possible)

–lemon pepper (bottled)

–feta cheese (one-half small container)

–asparagus (fresh, 1 bunch)

–baby salad greens (one-half package)

–peanuts (1 handful)

–tomato (1, fresh, medium)

–broccoli (one-half head, florets only)

–banana pepper (one-half, minced, small size

–honey

–extra virgin olive oil

–olive oil

–salt and pepper

1 – Dump one-half package of baby salad greens in a mixing bowl.  Add 1 handful of peanuts.  Chop the tomato, season with salt and pepper, and add to the bowl.  Cut the florets from one-half head of broccoli, and break apart to be bite-sized; add to the bowl.  Mince one-half banana pepper.  Season with salt, pepper, honey, and extra virgin olive oil.  Refrigerate until time for dinner.

2 – Place salmon in a covered baking dish with a little water.  Season with salt, pepper, tarragon, lemon pepper, and olive oil.  Spread one-half container of feta cheese on top.  Set aside.

3 – Cut undesirable ends off the asparagus.  Place the tips and some stalk in a covered baking dish with a little water.  Season with salt, pepper, lemon pepper, and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 4 minutes.

4 – Microwave the salmon for 5 minutes.

5 – Serve the salad as a first course.  Then serve the salmon hot, with the asparagus as a side.

–salmon adapted from Top 50 Most Delicious Salmon Recipes; other recipes original.

CREAMED & HERBED SALMON WITH ONION & CARROTS IN WHITE WINE – BRANDY SAUCE / OVEN FRIED OKRA / BACON – FLAVORED BLACK – EYED PEAS WITH ONION / GREEN SALAD WITH SQUASH – TOMATO – FETA – GREEN ONIONS – WALNUTS

–salmon (size of 3 decks of cards, one-half pound)

–mayonnaise

–yogurt (plain, non-fat)

–herbes de provence (basil, oregano, thyme, rosemary, savory, lavender)

–Vidalia onion (one-half, small)

–miniature carrots (6 to 8, fresh, packaged)

–white wine (cooking wine is fine)

–brandy (buy a very small, inexpensive bottle)

–salt and pepper

–olive oil

–okra (fresh, 3 handfuls)

–whole wheat chicken stuffing mix

–black-eyed peas (canned)

–Bac’n pieces

–minced onion (bottled)

–baby salad greens (one-half package)

–summer squash (1, small)

–feta cheese (one-half small carton)

–walnuts (1 handful)

–green onions (2 stalks, fresh)

–tomato (1, small)

–salad dressing (your favorite, bottled)

1 – Wash and cut off the stalks of the okra.  Then cut the okra into one-half inch pieces.  Place in an uncovered baking dish with 1 inch of water.  Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Microwave (uncovered) for 9 minutes.  Set aside.

2 – Place one-half package of baby salad greens in a mixing bowl.  Chop a small tomato; then season with salt and pepper and add to the bowl.  Slice 1 small summer squash; add to the bowl.  Empty one-half small carton of feta cheese into the bowl.  Add 1 handful of walnuts.  Chop 2 stalks of green onions into one-half inch pieces, and add to the bowl.  Finally, add salad dressing of your choice to taste.  Stir well. 

3 – Rinse a can of black-eyed peas in a colander.  Pour into a covered baking dish with a little water.  Season with Bac’n pieces, minced onion, salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Microwave for 3 minutes on high.

4 – Slice an onion and chop 6 to 8 miniature carrots into one-half inch pieces; add to a covered baking dish with a little white wine and 3 tablespoons of brandy.  Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 3 minutes.  Nestle the salmon in the white wine – brandy sauce.  Season with salt, pepper, herbs de provence, and cayenne pepper.  Set aside.

5 – Place 2 tablespoons of yogurt and 2 tablespoons of mayonnaise in a small, microwaveable bowl.  Season with salt and pepper.  Stir well.  Microwave on high for 45 seconds.

6 – Add a generous amount of stuffing to the okra.  Stir well.  Microwave in a covered baking dish for 1 minute.  When finished, keep covered to preserve warmth.

7 – Microwave the salmon for 4 and one-half minutes.  When finished, test the center to be sure that it is done.  If not, replace in the microwave for 1 minute more.  Spoon the faux cream sauce over the salmon.

8 – Serve the salad as a first course.  Then serve the salmon hot, with the peas and okra as sides.

–salmon adapted from The Best of French Cooking; other recipes original.

COLD SHRIMP WITH AVOCADO – PEACH SALSA / OVEN FRIED SQUASH WITH GARLIC – HERB BREADCRUMBS / SPRING MIX WITH DRIED BERRIES – PECANS – FETA IN HONEY – WINE SALAD DRESSING

Note:  The salsa is very, very tasty.

–shrimp (one-half package, frozen, tails off, deveined, shelled)

–avocado (1, fresh)

–peach (1, fresh, medium)

–cilantro (fresh if possible)

–onion (one-half, finely diced)

–red bell pepper (1 slice, finely chopped)

–banana peppers (bottled, 6 or so, sliced)

–olive oil

–salt and pepper

–garlic salt

–summer squash (5, very small)

–garlic – herb breadcrumbs (boxed)

–spring mix (packaged salad, one-half package)

–dried berries (packaged)

–pecans (1 small package)

–feta cheese (one-half small package)

–honey

–red wine (cooking wine is fine)

–cilantro (fresh if possible)

 

1 – Thaw and rinse the shrimp.  Place in a covered baking dish with a little water.  Microwave on high for 3 minutes.  Submerge in water to cool.  Keep in refrigerator until ready to serve.

2 – Cut open an avocado, remove the pit, and cut the flesh into small squares.  Set aside.  Peel the peach, and then slice into small squares.  Place in a mixing bowl.  Finely dice the onion, banana peppers, and red bell pepper.  Add to the mixing bowl.  Season with cilantro and olive oil.  Stir well.  Then fold in the avocado, being careful not to stir too vigorously.  Keep in the refrigerator until time for serving.

3 – Place one-half package of spring mix in a mixing bowl.  Add one-third cup of dried berries, the pecans, and the feta to the spring mix.  Season to taste with honey, salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Add a small amount of red wine.  Stir well.

4 – Wash and peel the squash.  Cut lengthwise, one time, each squash.  Place in a plastic bag, about one-half of the squash at a time.  Add olive oil.  Pour in a small amount of garlic – herb breadcrumbs.  Shake well.  Place the squash in one layer of a wide-mouthed covered baking dish.  Add a very small amount of water.  Microwave on high for 5 minutes.

5 – Serve the salad as a first course.  Serve the cold shrimp with the salsa, using the squash as a side.

–salsa adapted from allrecipes.com; other recipes original.

CHICKEN ROLLED IN CRUSHED CROUTONS WITH OREGANO IN LEMON – BROTH SAUCE / GREEK SALAD WITH TOMATO – FETA – BLACK OLIVES – PINE NUTS – AVOCADO

–4 chicken tenderloins or breast strips

–croutons (seasoned, packaged)

–oregano

–lemon pepper

–lemon juice

–chicken broth (non-fat, low sodium)

–salad greens

–tomatoes (1, medium)

–feta cheese (one-half package)

–black olives (1, small can)

–avocado (1, medium)

–mushrooms (6 to 8, sliced)

–red wine (cooking wine is fine)

–salt and pepper

–olive oil

–pine nuts (one-half small package)

 

1 – Place one-third cup of croutons in a plastic bag.  With the back of an ice cream scoop, crush the croutons against the kitchen counter.  Place the chicken in a separate plastic bag.  Season with salt, pepper, oregano, lemon pepper, and olive oil.  Pour the crushed croutons into the bag with the chicken.  Shake well.  Place the chicken in a covered baking dish.  Add a small amount of lemon juice and a small amount of chicken broth.  Season with olive oil.  Set aside.

2 – Place one-third package of salad greens in a mixing bowl.  Chop the tomato and add to the bowl.  Cut open the avocado, and then dice, and then add to the bowl.  Add feta cheese, black olives, mushrooms, red wine (just a bit), lemon juice, salt, pepper, pine nuts, and olive oil.  Fold all together.  Transfer to serving bowl.

3 – Microwave the chicken on high for 5 minutes.

4 – Serve the chicken hot, with the cold salad as a side.

–recipes original.

CREAMY COD WITH DEJON & PARSLEY / LENTILS WITH FAUX BACON & ONION / GREEN SALAD WITH STRAWBERRIES – PARMESAN – PEANUTS

–cod (size of 3 decks of cards, one-half pound)

–Dejon mustard

–mayonnaise

–parsley

–salt and pepper

–lentils (canned)

–Bac’n pieces (soy bacon)

–onion (one-half, medium)

–olive oil

–salad greens

–strawberries (sliced, 6 to 8, fresh)

–peanuts (1 handful)

–Parmesan cheese

–honey

–red wine

1 – Place the cod in a covered baking dish with a little water.  In a separate, small bowl, mix together 2 tablespoons of mayonnaise and 2 teaspoons of Dejon mustard.  After seasoning the cod with salt and pepper, spread the sauce on top of the cod.  Set aside.

2 – Slice the onion.  Place in a covered baking dish with a little water.  Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 3 minutes.  Rinse the lentils in a colander, and then place in the baking dish.  Season with pepper, olive oil, and Bac’n pieces.  Microwave on high for 3 minutes.

3 – Place one-half package of salad greens in a mixing bowl.  Add the sliced strawberries, peanuts, and a generous amount of Parmesan cheese.  Season with salt, pepper, a few drops of red wine, honey, and olive oil.  Stir well.

4 – Microwave the cod for 7 minutes (more because of the coating of sauce).

5 – Serve the salad as an appetizer.  Then serve the cod and lentils hot.

–cod adapted from the Italian Microwave Cookbook; other recipes original.

COD WITH MUSHROOM – ONION – CELERY WHOLE WHEAT DRESSING / BUTTER BEANS / GREEN SALAD WITH WALNUTS – FETA – AVOCADO

–cod (size of 3 decks of cards, one-half pound)

–baby bella mushrooms (6 or 8)

–onion (one half, medium)

–celery (1 stalk)

–Bac’n pieces (soy bacon)

–whole wheat bread (2 slices)

–salt and pepper

–parsley

–chicken broth (non-fat, low sodium)

–olive oil

–butter beans (canned)

–salad greens

–walnuts (a handful)

–feta cheese (one-half cup)

–avocado (1, medium)

–salad dressing (your favorite)

–croutons (1 handful)

1 – Rinse the mushrooms and celery.  Then slice the mushrooms, celery, and onion.  Place in a covered baking dish with a little chicken broth.  Season with salt, pepper, Bac’n pieces, and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 5 minutes.  Break apart the whole wheat bread, and stir into the vegetables.  Place the cod on top.  Season with salt, pepper, olive oil, and parsley.  Set aside.

2 – Rinse the butter beans in a colander.  Place in a covered baking dish with a little water.  Season with pepper and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 3 minutes.

3 – Place one-half package of salad greens in a mixing bowl.  Pour in the feta cheese and walnuts.  Break apart the avocado and dice.  Gently flow in the avocado with your favorite salad dressing.  Sprinkle the top with croutons.

4 – Microwave the cod and dressing for 7 minutes (more because of the volume of food).  Cod is done when it begins to break apart.

5 – Serve the cod on top of the dressing, hot, with the hot butter beans as a side.  Serve the salad cold as an appetizer.

–recipes original.

OVEN FRIED HERB – ENCRUSTED COD WITH ITALIAN BREADCRUMBS / PESTO BROCCOLI / GREEN SALAD WITH PARMESAN & HONEYED WALNUTS

–cod (size of 3 decks of cards, one-half pound)

–oregano, rosemary, parsley

–salt and pepper

–olive oil

–garlic powder

–Promise Activ margarine (heart – healthy)

–Italian seasoned breadcrumbs (boxed)

–broccoli (fresh, 1 stalk)

–basil

–salad greens

–Parmesan cheese

–walnuts (1 handful)

–honey (2 tablespoons)

–red wine (cooking wine is fine)

–lemon juice

 

1 – Place the cod in a plastic bag.  Drench with lemon juice.  Then add a small amount of olive oil.  Season the cod, in the bag, with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.  Set aside briefly.  Microwave 2 tablespoons of margarine in a small bowl for 20 seconds.  Stir in the herbs, minced.  Then stir in breadcrumbs to reach a consistency of paste.  Place the cod from the plastic bag in a covered baking dish, with a little water.  Spread the breadcrumb mixture on top of the cod.  Set aside.

2 – Cut off the stalk of the broccoli, leaving some stem and the florets.  Cut into portions.  Place in a covered baking dish.  Season with basil, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 4 minutes.

3 – Add two handfuls of salad greens to a mixing bowl.  In a separate, small bowl, pour the honey, and then the walnuts.  Stir well.  Empty the honeyed walnuts into the salad.  Then add Parmesan cheese to taste.  Season with salt, pepper, lemon juice, wine, and olive oil.  Stir well.

4 – Microwave the cod for 6 minutes.  When finished, check to be sure that cod has started breaking apart, which will indicate it is done.  If not, replace for a bit longer in the microwave.

5 – Serve the salad cold, as a first course.  Serve the cod and broccoli hot.

–recipes original.

A Simple Dinner:  ROSEMARY SALMON WITH LEMON & CAPERS IN WINE SAUCE / CARROTS WITH BROWN SUGAR / GREEN SALAD WITH FETA & CROUTONS

–salmon (size of 3 decks of cards, one-half pound)

–rosemary

–capers (about a dozen)

–red wine (cooking wine is fine)

–lemon juice

–salt and pepper

–olive oil

–miniature carrots

–brown sugar

–salad greens

–feta cheese

–croutons (seasoned)

–salad dressing (your favorite, bottled)

1 – Place the salmon in a covered baking dish.  Drench with lemon juice, and the add one-quarter cup of red wine.  Season with rosemary, salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Add capers on top.  Set aside.

2 – Place 20 miniature carrots in a covered baking dish.  Season with salt, pepper, olive oil, and brown sugar.  Microwave on high for 4 minutes.

3 – Place 2 handfuls of salad greens in a mixing bowl.  Add one-half cup of feta cheese.  Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and croutons (generously).  Add 2 tablespoons of your favorite salad dressing.

4 – Cook the salmon for 4 and one-half minutes.  When finished, test the center to be sure that it is done.  If not, replace in the microwave for 1 minute more.

–salmon recipes from allrecipes.com; other recipes original.

OREGANO TILAPIA WITH CRUSHED CROUTONS / GREEN SALAD WITH CAPERS, TOMATO, FETA, ONION, & WALNUTS

–2 medium tilapia

–croutons (seasoned, packaged)

–oregano (fresh if possible)

–olive oil

–salt and pepper

–salad greens

–capers

–tomato (1 fresh, medium)

–onion (one-half, medium)

–feta cheese (half a package of crumbled)

–walnuts (handful)

 

1 – Place the tilapia in a plastic bag.  Season with salt, pepper, oregano, and olive oil.  Place a generous portion of croutons in a separate plastic bag.  Crush against the kitchen counter with your fist.  Then pour the crushed croutons in the bag with the tilapia.  Shake well.  Place the tilapia in a covered baking dish with a little water.  Pour any remaining croutons over the top.  Cook in the microwave on high for 5 minutes.

2 – Place 2 handfuls of salad greens in a mixing bowl.  Chop the tomato and onion, and place in the bowl.  Add the feta, walnuts, and about 2 dozen capers.  Pour some of the caper juice into the salad.  Salt and pepper the salad.  Add olive oil to taste.  Stir well.

3 – Serve the hot tilapia with the cold salad on the side.

–recipes original.

BASIL – OREGANO TILAPIA WITH TOMATOES & RED WINE / COUSCOUS / GREEN SALAD WITH STRAWBERRIES, HONEY AND PECANS

Note:  My husband Paul recommends this dinner.

 

–tilapia (2, medium)

–basil, oregano (fresh if possible)

–garlic powder

–tomatoes (2, medium)

–red wine (cooking wine is fine)

–salt and pepper

–olive oil

–couscous (boxed)

–chicken broth (non-fat, low sodium)

–salad greens

–strawberries (6, fresh)

–honey

–pecans (chopped, one-half small package)

–feta cheese

–red wine

 

1 – Chop tomatoes.  Add to covered baking dish.  Season with salt, pepper, garlic powder, basil, oregano, and olive oil.  Cook on high for 3 minutes in microwave.  Set aside.

2 – Measure two-thirds’ cup of couscous.  Add to wide-mouthed, large, covered baking dish.  Add one cup of chicken broth.  Cook on high for 3 minutes.  Then let sit for at least 5 minutes.

3 – Measure two handfuls of salad greens to mixing bowl.  Slice strawberries and add to bowl.  Add 2 tablespoons of honey, one-half small package of pecans, and one-third package of feta cheese to salad greens.  Pour 3 tablespoons of red wine into mixing bowl.  Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Stir well.  Transfer to serving bowl.

4 – Place the tilapia on top of the tomatoes in covered baking dish.  Season with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and olive oil.  Cook on high for 6 minutes in microwave.

5 – Serve the tilapia and couscous hot, and the salad cold.

–recipes original.

PARMESAN CHICKEN / CAULIFLOWER WITH ONION AND OREGANO / GREEN SALAD

–4 chicken tenderloins or breast strips

–Parmesan cheese (shredded)

–fine breadcrumbs (plain, boxed)

–salt and pepper

–olive oil

–cauliflower

–onion

–oregano (fresh if possible)

–salad greens

–lemon juice

1 – Remove the leaves from the cauliflower.  Then chop off the florets into 2-inch pieces.  Place in one level in a wide-mouthed, large baking dish with cover.  Chop one onion and stir into the cauliflower.  Season with salt, pepper, olive oil, and oregano.  Add one inch of plain water.  Cook, covered, on high for 15 minutes in the microwave.

2 – Place the chicken in a plastic bag.  Season with salt, pepper, and a generous amount of olive oil.  Add one-quarter package of Parmesan cheese.  Shake well.  Then add one-quarter cup of breadcrumbs, and shake again.  Place in bottom of covered baking dish.  Add a little water.  When cauliflower is finished cooking, cook the chicken in the microwave for 5 minutes.

3 – Place 2 handfuls of salad greens in mixing bowl.  Season with salt, pepper, a few drops of lemon juice, and olive oil.  Place in serving dish.

4 – Serve the chicken and cauliflower hot, with the salad on the side.

–chicken and salad adapted from Real Simple Meals Made Easy; cauliflower original.

NEW ORLEANS COD WITH CRABMEAT / WHITE RICE / SALAD WITH BRIE AND STRAWBERRY VINAIGRETTE

–cod (size of three decks of cards)

–crabmeat (canned, 1 can)

–diced tomato (canned)

–Cajun spices – basil, thyme (fresh if possible), paprika, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper

–olive oil

–white rice (instant)

–bibb lettuce

–brie cheese

–strawberry vinaigrette

–pecan bits (one small package)

 

1 – Dip out one-half can of diced tomato in baking dish with cover.  Place the cod on top.  Spoon the crabmeat on either side of the cod (but not on top, for this would hinder cooking in the microwave).  Season with the Cajun spices (basil, thyme (fresh if possible), paprika, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper), and olive oil.  Set aside.

2 – Measure two-thirds cup of instant white rice in wide-mouthed, large baking dish with cover.  Season with one teaspoon of salt.  Add two-thirds cup of water.  Cook in microwave for 3 minutes.  Let stand for at least 5 minutes.

3 – Use food processor to puree 5 or 6 fresh strawberries.  Add 4 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil and two tablespoons of sugar, and puree the whole.  Set aside.

4 – Break the bibb lettuce in small pieces.  Cut small pieces of brie cheese.  Mix lettuce, brie, and pecan bits.  Just before serving as a first course, add the strawberry vinaigrette to the salad. 

5 – Cook the cod for 8 minutes in the microwave, covered.

6 – While cod is cooking, serve the first course of salad.  Then serve the cod on top of the white rice, while still hot.

–cod adapted from the Black Bass (Lumberville, Pennsylvania); salad adapted from Zynodoa (Staunton, Virginia)