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Meals Under 5 – Dinner

Fast Tandoori Chicken

Ingredients:

  • 2  cups yogurt
  • 2  teaspoons minced ginger
  • 2  teaspoons minced garlic
  • 2  teaspoons paprika
  • 2  teaspoons ground coriander
  •  Juice of a lime
  •  Salt and fresh black pepper
  • 1 ½  pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  •  Minced cilantro, for garnish

Directions:

  1. Heat broiler or grill. Combine yogurt, ginger, garlic, paprika, coriander, half the lime juice and salt and pepper to taste in a large bowl. Dredge chicken in yogurt mixture and marinate 5 to 60 minutes, as time allows.
  2. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil for easier cleanup. Put chicken breasts on pan, underside facing up; reserve marinade that does not cling to breasts. Broil 3 to 4 minutes, or until lightly browned. Turn chicken, and spoon remaining marinade over. Broil on smooth side another 3 to 4 minutes, or until lightly browned. Garnish, add remaining lime juice over chicken and serve, spooning the cooked marinade over the meat and, if you’re serving it, over rice.

Easy Vegetarian Chili

Ingredients:

  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 can diced tomatoes (fire roasted if available)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 cans of beans (any type of bean works)
  • 1 can corn
  • 1 1/2 cup water
  • Spices:
    • Salt
    • Pepper
    • Paprika
    • Brown Sugar
    • Cumin

Directions:

  1. Drain all cans of water and wash the beans.
  2. Saute onions and garlic.  Combine all ingredients on stove top or crockpot. Bring to boil and reduce to medium heat. Cook for at least an hour.

Lime Honey Chicken

Ingredients:

  • 4 pieces boneless skinless, chicken breasts, cubed 
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil  
  • 2 limes juiced, about 1 cup  
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced  
  • 1 teaspoon salt  
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 cup honey  

Directions:

  1. Place oil, lime juice, garlic, salt, and pepper in a gallon resealable bag. Mix well. 
  2. Cube chicken and place in bag with marinade.
  3. Let marinade in refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
  4. Line a baking sheet with foil. Place chicken and marinade on pan.
  5. Cook for about 15-20 minutes in a 375 degree oven, until chicken is 165 degrees.

Shrimp and Grits

Ingredients:

Grits:

    • 1 cup grits
    • 4 1/2 cups vegetable or chicken stock
    • 1 1/2 cup sharp cheddar, grated

Topping:

    • 1 lb shrimp. peeled and deveined
    • 1 tsp butter or vegetable oil
    • 1 medium onion, chopped
    • 1 bell pepper, chopped
    • 2 sticks celery, chopped
    • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
    • 1 tomato chopped

Directions:

  1. Bring the stock to a boil in a medium-sized pot, then turn the heat down to low and slowly pour in the cornmeal while stirring briskly with a wooden spoon. Stirring while pouring is crucial to keep the grits creamy and smooth—no lumps! Once the grits become smooth and thick, place a lid on the pot with the spoon still in it so that steam can escape.
  2. Let the grits cook while you prepare the rest of the meal, checking in occasionally to give them a stir. The total cooking time should be about 25 to 30 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare the shrimp and vegetables. Add the butter or oil to a large pan on medium heat and let it get hot. Add the onion, pepper, and celery. Sauté until the onion is just translucent, about 2 minutes. Add the garlic, as well as the green chili if you like things spicy. Let everything cook for another minute. Add the tomato and cook for 3 or 4 minutes, until the tomato releases its juice and the vegetables resemble a thick and chunky sauce. Add a dribble of water to keep everything loose and saucy, then toss in the shrimp. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the shrimp are pink all over. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Once the grits are ready, take them off the heat and add the cheese and most of the scallions, then stir. Ladle the grits into bowls and top with the shrimp, vegetables, and a few more scallions.

Cauliflower and Chickpea Masala

Ingredients:

Masala Spice Mix:

  • 2 Tbsp garam masala
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • Freshly Cracked Pepper

Skillet Ingredients:

  • 1 yellow onion
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 Tbsp grated fresh ginger
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 12 oz. frozen cauliflower florets
  • 1 15oz. can chickpeas, drained
  • 15oz. can tomato sauce
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • salt to taste

Instructions:

  1. In a small bowl, combine the spices for the masala spice mix (garam masala, cumin, turmeric, smoked paprika, cayenne, salt, and pepper).
  2. Finely dice the onion, mince the garlic, and grate the ginger. Add all three to a large skillet along with the olive oil and sauté over medium heat until the onions are soft and translucent (about 3 minutes). Add the spice mix and continue to sauté for one more minute.
  3. Add the frozen cauliflower florets to the skillet with the aromatics and spices, and continue to sauté for about 5 minutes more, or until the cauliflower have thawed through and are completely coated in spices.
  4. Add the drained chickpeas, tomato sauce, and 1/4 cup water to the skillet. Stir to combine, then allow them to simmer over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, for about 15 minutes. If the mixture becomes too dry as it simmers, add a couple more tablespoons of water.
  5. After the sauce has simmered for 15 minutes, turn off the heat and stir in the heavy cream. Give the masala a taste and add salt as needed. Serve in a bowl either over rice or with a piece of bread for dipping.

Caesar Salad

Ingredients:

  • Romaine lettuce
  • Olive oil
  • Red wine vinegar
  • Lemon juice
  • 4 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • 2 cloves Garlic
  • A dash of Worcestershire sauce
  • 6 oz. Parmesan cheese
  • Black pepper
  • Salt

Directions:

Croutons:

  1. Cut baguette in half lengthwise and slice into 1/4″ thick pieces and place on baking sheet.
  2. Combine 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil with minced garlic. Toss bread with garlic infused oil and 2 Tbsp parmesan.
  3. Spread evenly and bake on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper to desired crispness.

Dressing:

  1. Whisk together minced garlic, dijon, Worcestershire, lemon juice and red wine vinegar.
  2. Whisking while adding oil emulsifies the dressing for a smooth and creamy (not oily) consistency.
  3. Season with 1/2 tsp salt and 1/8 tsp black pepper, or to taste.
  1. Pour the dressing over the romaine bits and toss well.
  2. Top with croutons, parmesan cheese and pepper.

Roasted Butternut Squash and Sage Soup

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium butternut squash, seeded and chopped
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh sage, chopped
  • 1 15.5 oz can vegetable or chicken broth
  • ¼ cup milk
  • ¼ cup plain Greek yogurt

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Place squash on sheet and toss with 2 tablespoons olive oil plus salt and pepper.
  3. Place sheet in oven until squash is soft and cooked through, about 40 minutes.
  4. Puree cooked squash in blender. 
  5. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a pot and add the garlic and sage. Cook until fragrant, about 1-2 minutes.
  6. Add puree, broth, and ½ teaspoon salt to pot and bring to a boil.
  7. Remove from heat and add milk and yogurt; season with salt and pepper to taste.
  8. Serve immediately.

Sun Dried Tomato Pasta

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 cups chicken broth* 
  • 1.5 cups whole milk
  • 8 oz fettuccine
  • 12 pieces sun dried tomatoes
  • Freshly cracked pepper
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan

Instructions:

  1. Cut the sun dried tomatoes into small pieces and set aside. Mince the garlic and sauté it with butter in a deep skillet over medium heat for 1-2 minutes, or just until it’s soft and fragrant (don’t let it brown).
  2. Add the chicken broth, milk, fettuccine (break in half), sun dried tomato pieces, and a healthy dose of freshly cracked pepper (15-20 cranks of a pepper mill) to the skillet. Make sure the pasta is submerged below the liquid.
  3. Place a lid on the pasta and allow the liquid in the skillet to come to a boil. Once it reaches a boil, give it a quick stir to make sure the pasta is not stuck to the bottom. Return the lid to the top, turn the heat down to low (or just above low), and let it simmer for about 10-12 minutes, or until the pasta is tender. Stir briefly every 4-5 minutes as it simmers to keep the pasta from sticking to the bottom of the skillet.
  4. If the pasta is still very soupy at that point, remove the lid and let it simmer for 3-5 minutes more, or until the sauce has reduced and thickened slightly. Once thickened, sprinkle the Parmesan over top and serve. The sauce will continue to thicken after the pasta is removed from the heat.

Chicken (Optional)

  1. Pat the chicken dry using a paper towel and season with salt and pepper.
  2. Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a large skillet.
  3. Carefully add the chicken to the hot pan and cook for 5 to 7 minutes.
  4. Flip the chicken and cook until it reaches 165°F, 5 to 7 minutes more.
  5. Slice and serve over the pasta.

Dal Soup

Ingredients:

  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 clove garlic, minced
  • ½ teaspoon fresh ginger, minced
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 ¼ cup dried lentils (dal), picked through and rinsed
  • 5 cups boiling water
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric, ground
  • 2 teaspoon coriander, ground
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1- 16 oz. can diced tomatoes

Instructions:

  1. Turn slow cooker on high. Add all ingredients and stir.
  2. Cover and cook for 1 ½ hours, until lentils are tender.
  3. Serve with fresh spinach. 

Honey Garlic Pork Chops

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 Tablespoons lemon juice (about 1 lemon)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced (about 1 Tablespoon)
  • 1 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 2 boneless pork chops (3/4-1″ thick)
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2-3 Tablespoons olive oil

Instructions:

  1. To make the sauce, whisk the honey, lemon juice, minced garlic, and soy sauce together in a bowl, or shake it up in a jar.
  2. Heat 2-3 Tablespoons olive oil in a large (12″) skillet over medium to medium-high heat, until the oil shimmers.
  3. Season the pork chops on both sides with salt and pepper. Carefully add them to the skillet and let them brown (3-4 minutes).
  4. When they’re nicely browned on the first side, flip them over and sear the second side, 3 minutes.
  5. Reduce the heat to medium-low and add the glaze. Use a spatula to scrape up the browned bits on the bottom of the skillet and stir them into the glaze.
  6. Allow the chops to simmer until cooked through, about 4-8 minutes, depending on their thickness.
  7. When the chops are done, remove them to a plate.
  8. Continue to simmer the glaze until it’s thick enough for a spatula to leave a momentary trail if you scrape the bottom of the pan (about the consistency of pancake syrup).
  9. Pour the glaze directly over the chops on the serving plate.