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What's for Dinner: Master recipes stretch for several meals

By Beverly Glaze

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Master recipes -- base recipes that can be used in multiple dishes -- save time and money. Make master meat sauce early in the week and use it for two other dinners, beef and bean burritos, and pasta and meat sauce, or use your imagination to tweak the sauce for other meals.

Pick up the inexpensive parts of chicken (necks, backs and wings) to make stock for chicken and barley soup and use canned salmon for salmon croquettes. Lean pork loin is the main ingredient in green chili. If your batch turns out well, make it again and enter it in the Capitol Market Green Chili Shoot Out on March 16. Visit www.capitolmarket.net for details.

Master Meat Sauce

Source: University of Wyoming Extension.

     4     pounds lean ground beef

     1     medium onion, minced

     1    6-ounce can tomato paste plus 6-ounce can water or 1 can tomato soup

     1    15-ounce can tomato sauce

     1     teaspoon garlic powder

     1     teaspoon salt

BROWN meat in a large skillet or sauce pan; drain fat. Add rest of ingredients. Simmer 20 to 30 minutes. Add water or tomato juice to thin if necessary. Immediately place in 1-cup portions in freezer-quality, resealable plastic bags. Freeze.

Nutrition information: Per 1/2 cup: 130 calories, 9 grams total fat, 3.5 grams saturated fat, 40 milligrams cholesterol, 240 milligrams sodium, 3 grams total carbohydrate, 1 gram dietary fiber, 11 grams protein.

Beef and Bean Burritos

Makes 6 servings. Source: University of Wyoming Extension.

     2    cups Master Meat Sauce

     1/4  cup tomato sauce

     1     teaspoon pepper

     2     teaspoons chili powder

     2    cups refried beans

     6    6-inch whole-wheat tortillas

     1/2  cup chunky salsa

     1/3  cup shredded cheddar cheese

HEAT oven to 350°. Add pepper and chili powder to Master Meat Sauce. Cover and simmer 5 minutes.

ADD heated refried beans. Cover and simmer another 5 minutes.

SPOON 3 tablespoons of the mixture on each tortilla. Roll up tortillas. Place tortillas in a cake pan seam side down.

COMBINE salsa and 1/4 cup tomato sauce. Evenly spoon mixture over tortillas. Bake 10 minutes. Sprinkle 2 teaspoons cheddar cheese over top of each tortilla. Continue baking until cheese is melted and tortillas are heated through.

Nutrition information: 310 calories, 11 grams total fat, 4 grams saturated fat, 30 milligrams cholesterol, 790 milligrams sodium, 35 grams total carbohydrate, 16 grams dietary fiber, 17 grams protein.

Pasta and Meat Sauce

Makes 4 servings. Source: University of Wyoming Extension.

     2    cups Master Meat Sauce

     1    16-ounce can tomatoes, chopped

     1    8-ounce can tomato sauce

     1/2     teaspoon oregano

     1/2     teaspoon basil

     1/8     teaspoon pepper

     Pasta (uncooked)

     1     tablespoon vegetable oil

     Parmesan cheese (optional)

THAW Master Meat Sauce in a large bowl. Place in a saucepan and simmer slowly for 1/2 to 1 hour.

BOIL 3 quarts water in a large pan. Add 1 tablespoon vegetable oil to reduce boiling over. Add 8 ounces pasta, boil uncovered, stirring occasionally. Cooking time will vary, average time is 8 to 10 minutes. Immediately drain in a colander, do not rinse.

POUR meat sauce over hot cooked pasta. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

Nutrition information: 260 calories, 1.5 grams total fat, 0 grams saturated fat, 0 grams cholesterol, 550 milligrams sodium, 54 grams total carbohydrate, 4 grams dietary fiber, 9 grams protein.

Green Chili

Makes 4 servings. Source: University of Wyoming Extension.

     1     pound lean pork

     6     tablespoons flour

     1     tablespoon canola oil

     1     small onion, diced

     1    4-ounce can green chilies, chopped

     1    16-ounce can tomatoes, chopped

     4    cups water

     1     teaspoon garlic powder

     Salt and pepper to taste

CUT up pork and lightly coat with flour; heat oil in skillet and add pork until browned on all sides. Add onions and brown. Add chilies, tomatoes, water and seasonings. Simmer for 1 hour.

Nutrition information: 270 calories, 10 grams total fat, 2.5 grams saturated fat, 75 milligrams cholesterol, 680 milligrams sodium, 20 grams total carbohydrate, 2 grams dietary fiber, 26 grams protein.

Chicken and Barley Soup

Makes 6 servings. Source: University of Wyoming Extension.

     2     pounds chicken backs, necks, and/or wings

     8    cups water

     1/2  cup barley

     1/2     pound carrots, grated

     2     stalks celery, diced

     1     small onion, diced

     2     teaspoons parsley

     1     teaspoon salt

     1/4     teaspoon pepper

COMBINE chicken and water in a large pan. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer gently, partially covered for 2 hours. Add more water if needed. Remove from heat and cool.

REMOVE meat from bones and leave in broth. Add barley and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 1 hour. Add remaining ingredients and continue cooking for an additional 30 minutes.

Nutrition information: 410 calories, 25 grams total fat, 7 grams saturated fat, 135 milligrams cholesterol, 540 milligrams sodium, 17 grams total carbohydrates, 4 grams dietary fiber, 28 grams protein.

Salmon Croquettes

Makes 6 servings. Source: University of Wyoming Extension.

     1    15-ounce can of salmon, drained

     1     tablespoon olive oil

     1 1/2     cups mashed potato

     1/2  cup green onion, chopped

     1/4  cup parsley, chopped

     1    raw egg

     1    cup bread crumbs, 1/2 cup reserved

     Salt and pepper to taste

MIX all ingredients together, shape into patties, and pat into bread crumbs to cover. Heat pan on medium-high heat, add 1 tablespoon oil and cook patties 4 to 5 minutes per side.

Nutrition information: 220 calories, 9 grams total fat, 1.5 grams saturated fat, 85 milligrams cholesterol, 300 milligrams sodium, 13 grams total carbohydrate, 1 gram dietary fiber, 21 grams protein.

Shopping list

Onion

Carrots

Celery

Potatoes

Green onion

Parsley

Tomato paste

Tomato sauce

Canned tomatoes

Pasta

Canned green chilies

Refried beans

Whole-wheat tortillas

Bread crumbs

Barley

Salsa

Canned salmon

Lean pork

Ground beef

Chicken backs, necks and/or wings

Shredded cheddar cheese

Pantry staples: garlic powder, salt, pepper, chili powder, oregano, basil, vegetable oil, Parmesan cheese, parsley, olive oil, egg

Programs and activities offered by the West Virginia University Extension Service are available to all persons without regard to race, color, sex, disability, religion, age, veteran status, political beliefs, sexual orientation, national origin and marital or family status. This material was funded, in part, by the USDA's Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program provides nutrition assistance to people with limited income. To find out more, contact your local Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.

Beverly Glaze has a master's degree in human nutrition and food science and is a WVU Extension specialist in the FNP adult program. Reach her at Beverly.Glaze@mail.wvu.edu or 304-634-8449.


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