2017-07-19 / Entertainment

FRESH, FILLING FAMILY DINNERS


Photo courtesy of Getty Images Photo courtesy of Getty Images When busy mornings give way to a hectic workday followed by homework and after-school activities, a fresh, simple meal is often the only option. Before you hit the drive-thru or settle for an equally unhealthy alternative, check out these delicious dishes you can prepare and serve without the hassle.

Find more ideas to make your busy weeknights easy at Culinary.net.

Savory and Scrumptious

Take a nutritious dish to the family table that still brings a flavorful bite. This savory lasagna recipe boasts meaty eggplant, fresh zucchini and lycopene-rich tomatoes. Whole-wheat noodles pack fiber and natural plant compounds, called phytochemicals. Find more better-for-you recipe ideas at AICR.org.

Roasted Vegetable Lasagna

Reprinted with permission from
the American Institute for Cancer
Research.
Servings: 12
2 eggplants (about 3 pounds),
quartered lengthwise
6 medium zucchini (about 3
pounds)
canola oil cooking spray
1 pound whole-wheat lasagna
noodles
15 ounces low-fat ricotta or
low-fat cottage cheese
2 eggs
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
3 cups low-fat mozzarella
cheese
4 cups low-sodium tomato
sauce, divided

Heat oven to 450 F. Grease 13-by-9-
by-2-inch baking pan; set aside.
Slice eggplant and zucchini
in 1/2-inch slices. Layer on two
baking sheets and coat both sides of
vegetables with cooking spray. Roast
20 minutes. Toss vegetables and
continue roasting until well browned
and soft, about 20 minutes more.
Transfer vegetables to large bowl.
Reduce oven temperature to 375 F.
Cook lasagna noodles according to
package directions. Separate noodles
and let cool slightly.
In medium bowl, mix together
cheese, eggs, Parmesan, nutmeg and
garlic powder.
To assemble: Spread thin layer of
sauce over bottom of prepared pan.
Cover with layer of pasta (noodle
strips slightly overlapping). Spread
with one-third of ricotta mixture.
Sprinkle 1/4 of the mozzarella
over ricotta. Spoon 1/3 of roasted
vegetables on top. Top with 1/2 cup
tomato sauce and continue assembly
as directed until there are four layers
of pasta and three layers of filling.
Spread remaining sauce on top and
sprinkle with remaining mozzarella.
Cover pan with aluminum foil
and bake 30 minutes. Uncover and
continue baking until golden and
bubbly, about 15 minutes more. Let
stand 15 minutes before serving.

Quick, Flavorful Meal Idea

It’s not always easy to make healthy food choices. When time is of the essence, look for delicious recipe ingredients that are convenient and easy to prepare while also offering great taste and health benefits.

In fact, 40 percent of American consumers said shorter cooking times are especially important when buying grocery items such as rice, grains and pasta, according to research from Statista, and 83 percent said taste is an important factor when purchasing food.

Ready in 10 minutes with flavor infused in every grain, Uncle Ben’s Flavor Infusions rice is ideal for those looking for quick and healthy meal options. With its one-step cooking process, it makes it easy for families to cook with their kids and quickly get dinner on the table. The re-sealable pouches ensure freshness for multiple uses, and any of the five flavors can be combined with fresh vegetables, proteins and herbs for a simple meal that’s ready in less than 20 minutes.

Simple recipe options using Flavor Infusions, such as Easy Thai Chicken Satay and Rice Salad, are quick meals the entire family can enjoy, even when short on time. Find more meal ideas at UncleBens.com.

Easy Thai Chicken Satay
and Rice Salad

Servings: 4-6
Dressing:
1/4 cup canned, unsweetened
coconut milk
1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
1 tablespoon rice wine
vinegar
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 teaspoons red curry paste
1/8 teaspoon ground cayenne
pepper
1-2 tablespoons hot water
Salad:
1 cup Uncle Ben’s Flavor
Infusions Roasted
Chicken
1 1/2 cups shredded rotisserie
chicken
1 cup shredded carrots

1 cup sliced pea pods
1 cup sliced red pepper
1 avocado, pitted and sliced
4-6 red radishes, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons chopped
peanuts
2 tablespoons chopped green
onions
To make dressing: In small glass
bowl, stir together coconut milk,
peanut butter, rice wine vinegar, soy
sauce, red curry paste, cayenne pepper
and hot water; set aside.
Cook rice according to package
instructions. Makes about 3 1/2 cups.
In center of individual plates, place
about 1 cup rice. Arrange chicken,
carrots, pea pods, red pepper,
avocado, radishes, peanuts and green
onions around rice then drizzle with
dressing.

Fish with a Twist

Add a little variety to your dinnertime protein with a smart, heart-healthy option like fish. Fillets cook quickly and a slightly sweet white fish like farm-raised catfish has a mild enough flavor to entice picky young eaters. White fish is also quite versatile; it can take on other flavors such as this citrusy topping with ease. Find more family-friendly fish recipes at USCatfish.com.

Catfish Quesadilla with Cilantro-Lime Sour Cream

Recipe courtesy of The Catfish Institute
Servings: 4
4 U.S. Farm-Raised Catfish
Fillets, grilled or baked
2 1/2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
salt, to taste
freshly ground pepper, to taste
smoked paprika or chili powder
1 small red bell pepper, diced
1/2 red onion, diced
3/4 cup whole corn kernels
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves,
chopped
4 flour or wheat tortillas (10
inches each)
1 can (16 ounces) refried black
beans
2 cups grated pepper jack cheese
Cilantro-Lime Sour Cream:
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves,
chopped
1/2 lime, juiced
lime zest
salt, to taste

Lightly brush fish with 1 tablespoon
olive oil. Season with salt, pepper and
smoked paprika or chili powder. Prepare
fish on grill or bake until done. Place in
refrigerator to cool. When cool, cut into
bite-size pieces.
In large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil
over medium-high heat. Saute red pepper
and onion until soft, about 5 minutes. Add
corn, red pepper flakes, cumin and salt
and pepper, to taste. Toss to incorporate
and saute 3 minutes. Transfer to bowl and
add cilantro.
Heat pan large enough to hold flat
tortilla to medium heat. Lightly brush pan
with remaining olive oil.
Spread tortilla on work surface. On half
of each tortilla, spread refried beans and
vegetables; top with fish.
Place in heated pan and sprinkle 1/2
cup cheese on other half of tortilla. Heat
until cheese is melted and tortilla is lightly
crispy. Fold cheese side over vegetable
side and remove to plate.
Using serrated knife, cut each tortilla
into four pieces. Serve with Cilantro-Lime
Sour Cream.
To make Cilantro-Lime Sour Cream:
In small bowl, mix all ingredients until
combined.

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