School is finally back in session and family fall routines begin—soccer, dance class, homework. It always feels good to get back on schedule in September, and after a summer of minimal cooking on my part, I am happy to get my meals organized again.
Here are this week’s recipes.
Monday – Jerk Turkey Burgers with Mango Slaw and Grilled Potatoes
Tuesday – Spaghetti from Garden and Crusty Bread
Wednesday – Mustard Swordfish and Spinach Salad
Thursday – Polenta with Broccoli and Garlic
Friday – Pizza
The recipes serve four unless otherwise noted—in my house, two adults and two little kids.
Jerk Turkey Burgers with Mango Slaw (from Food Network Magazine, April 2010)
We love these burgers but the kids prefer them without the slaw.
1 pound ground turkey
1 tablespoon jerk seasoning, plus more for sprinkling
1 small green apple, peeled and grated
½ cup finely chopped scallions
¼ cup Panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
Kosher salt and pepper
¼ cup mayonnaise, plus more for brushing
¼ cup mango chutney, roughly chopped
3 cup shredded green cabbage
1 carrot, shredded
Canola oil, for the grill
4 hamburger buns, split
- Preheat a grill or grill pan to medium high. Mix the turkey, jerk seasoning, apple and ¼ cup scallions and the panko in a bowl; season with salt and pepper. Form into four 1-inch-thick patties and make a small indentation in the middle of each with your thumb to prevent it from puffing up on the grill. Refrigerate.
- Whisk the mayonnaise and chutney in a large bowl. Add the cabbage, carrot and the remaining ¼ cup scallions, season with salt and pepper and toss to coat.
- Brush the grill with canola oil. Grill the turkey patties until browned and cooked through, four to five minutes per side.
- Brush the cut sides of the buns with mayonnaise and sprinkle with jerk seasoning; toast on the grill, about 30 seconds. Serve the burgers and the slaw.
To prepare the potatoes, thinly slice white or red potatoes and toss them with olive oil, salt and pepper. Grill them in a grill basket until tender.
Spaghetti from My Garden
My husband planted many tomatoes this year so we have tons of tomatoes. I wanted to use up a lot of tomatoes and herbs from my garden so I made a simple sauce to serve over spaghetti.
6-8 ripe tomatoes, seeded and diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
about 1/3 cup chopped sweet onion
handful of chopped fresh parsley
handful of chopped fresh basil leaves
freshly ground black pepper
freshly grated Parmesan cheese
8 ounces of spaghetti
- Boil a large pot of salty water. Cook spaghetti until al dente according to package directions.
- Heat a couple of tablespoons of olive oil in large skillet. Cook the garlic and onions until soft. Add tomatoes and sauté for several minutes until they are heated through and begin to soften. Add parsley, basil salt and pepper and stir and turn off heat.
- Drain spaghetti and toss with tomatoes. Top with lots of freshly grated Parmesan and serve with crusty bread.
Mustard Swordfish (from Off the Hook, May 1988)
My mother-in-law gave me this recipe and for a long time, when I was pregnant and the kids were younger, we didn’t eat swordfish because of the high mercury in the fish. Now we eat it once in a while and when we do this is how we prepare it.
2 pounds swordfish steaks, 1 ½ inches thick
¾ cup mayonnaise
¼ cup stone ground or coarse grain mustard
1 tablespoon dry white wine
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 scallion, sliced thinly
- Rinse and pat swordfish dry. Combine remaining ingredients and spread on both sides of fish.
- Grill or broil, turning once, until fish is firm, about 15-20 minutes.
While the fish is cooking, toss a spinach salad with a mild vinaigrette.
Polenta with Broccoli and Garlic (from Simple Vegetarian Pleasures, 1998)
4 cups light vegetable stock, store-bought or homemade
¼ teaspoon salt
1 ¼ cup cornmeal
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
6 garlic cloves, minced
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 large bunch broccoli, cut into tiny florets, stalks peeled and diced (5-6 cups total)
1/3 cup water
3 plum tomatoes, seeded and finely diced
- To make the polenta, bring the vegetable stock and salt to a boil in a medium-size, heavy bottomed saucepan. Meanwhile, prepare all the ingredients for this dish and set them out in front of you.
- When the stock boils, reduce the heat to low and very slowly drizzle in the cornmeal, whisking constantly with a wire whisk. Continue to cook the polenta, whisking continuously; until it is thick like mashed potatoes and begins to tear away from the sides of the pot, about five minutes. Whisk in the cheese and butter, cover the pot, and then remove it from the heat. The polenta can be kept like this for 10 minutes or so.
- Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and cook one minute. Mix in the broccoli, toss well, and then pour in the water. Cover the pan and cook the broccoli until tender. About five minutes. Remove the cover and stir in the tomatoes and salt to taste. Cook uncovered, for about two minutes, or until the tomatoes are soft and most of the liquid has evaporated.
- To serve, spoon a mound of polenta on each dinner plate. Top with the broccoli mixture.
It is important for this recipe that you have everything ready for you start cooking. The polenta will get dry if you cook it first then prepare your other ingredients. You need to cook the broccoli right after you cook the polenta. Serve with some fresh fruit—we like cantaloupe with it.
This grocery list is divided into sections like the grocery store so it is easier to manage. There is a section at the bottom of the list for your pantry. Check your pantry for those items and if you don’t have them, add them to your shopping list. I have coded the grocery list by dinner item. If your family doesn’t like a particular side item, substitute something else.
Jerk Turkey Burgers with Mango Slaw and Grilled Potatoes=JTB
Spaghetti from My Garden and Crusty Bread=SMG
Mustard Swordfish and Spinach Salad=MS
Polenta with Broccoli and Garlic=PBG
Parmesan cheese (SMG, PBG)
1 small green apple (JTB)
2 bunches of scallions (JTB, MS)
Green cabbage (JTB)
1 carrot (JTB)
Red or white potatoes (JTB)
6-8 ripe tomatoes (SMG)
2 garlic cloves (SMG)
Sweet onion (SMG)
Fresh parsley (SMG)
Fresh basil leaves (SMG)
Baby spinach (for salad) (MS)
6 garlic cloves (PBG)
1 large bunch broccoli (PBG)
3 plum tomatoes (PBG)
Jerk seasoning, plus more for sprinkling (JTB)
panko (Japanese breadcrumbs) (JTB)
Mango chutney (JTB)
8 ounces of spaghetti (SMG)
Stone ground or coarse grain mustard (MS)
Dry white wine (MS)
Lemon juice (MS)
Mild vinaigrette dressing (MS)
4 cups light vegetable stock (PBG)
4 hamburger buns (JTB)
Crusty bread (SMG)
1 pound ground turkey (JTB)
2 pounds swordfish steaks, 1 ½ inches thick (MS)
Check your pantry for:
Coarse salt (like Kosher salt)
Mayonnaise (JTB, MS)
Crushed red pepper flakes (PGB)