Seven-Day Menu Planner

11/ 22

Family Sunday

The wonderful aromas of APPLE AND SPICE PORK LOIN ROAST (see recipe) will draw the family to the table in no time.

A perfect side dish is ROASTED SWEET POTATOES. Heat oven to 400 degrees. Scrub and halve sweet potatoes lengthwise; place in baking dish, cut-side up. Drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil, chopped fresh thyme, and coarse salt and pepper to taste. Bake 35 to 45 minutes or until golden-brown and tender.

Add frozen GREEN PEAS and DINNER ROLLS. For dessert, top GINGERBREAD with MOLASSES CREAM. Mix 1 cup any frozen whipped topping (thawed) with 2 tablespoons molasses and spoon over the gingerbread.

PLAN AHEAD: Save enough pork and gingerbread for Monday.

11/ 23

Heat-and-Eat Monday

Use the Sunday leftovers for BAKED PORK AND SAUERKRAUT. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Rinse and drain 2 pounds refrigerated sauerkraut and spoon into a 2-quart baking dish coated with cooking spray. Stir in 1 teaspoon caraway seeds. Top with sliced cooked (leftover) pork. Cover tightly with foil. Bake 25 minutes or until hot. Serve with any MASHED POTATOES, deli CARROT SALAD and RYE BREAD. Dessert is leftover GINGERBREAD.

PLAN AHEAD: Buy enough carrot salad for Wednesday.

11/ 24

Meatless Tuesday

Make dinner a light one tonight with PENNE WITH SPINACH AND OLIVES (see recipe). Add a LETTUCE WEDGE and GARLIC BREAD. PEACHES are a simple dessert.

11/ 25

Express Wednesday

Look for any packaged frozen PHILLY CHEESESTEAKS and follow the directions. Add (frozen) O’BRIEN POTATOES and leftover CARROT SALAD. Try PLUMS for dessert.

11/ 26

Thanksgiving Thursday

Enjoy all the family favorites, including TURKEY, DRESSING, GRAVY, MASHED POTATOES, GREEN BEANS and CRANBERRIES, as you gather for Thanksgiving. For dessert, PUMPKIN PECAN CRUNCH (see recipe) takes two favorites, pumpkin and pecans, in another direction. Top with light whipped cream.

PLAN AHEAD: Save enough turkey for Friday and enough Pumpkin Pecan Crunch for Saturday.

11/ 27

Budget Friday

Use some Thanksgiving leftovers for CRANBERRY-ANCHO TURKEY SANDWICHES. For one sandwich: Toast 2 slices sourdough bread. Spread 2 tablespoons reduced-fat cream cheese on the toast. Spread both sides with 1/4 cup whole-berry cranberry sauce. Top one slice with sliced (leftover) turkey; sprinkle with ancho chile powder and add romaine. Cover with other toast slice; cut on diagonal and serve with BAKED CHIPS and CELERY STICKS. For dessert, lighten up with fresh PINEAPPLE CHUNKS.

11/ 28

Easy Entertaining Saturday

Entertain your friends with GRILLED BURGERS AND ONIONS for a change of pace from the holiday eat-a-thons. Grill the (lean ground beef) burgers 13 to 15 minutes for medium. Grill thick (1/2-inch) slices of Vidalia (or other sweet onions) 10 to 12 minutes or until tender. Before grilling, brush onions with canola oil and season burgers and onions with coarse salt and pepper.

Serve the burgers and onions on grilled, whole-grain buns along with ROASTED RED POTATOES and a SLICED TOMATO AND LETTUCE SALAD on the side. For dessert, leftover PUMPKIN PECAN CRUNCH is as easy as it gets.

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THE RECIPES

APPLE AND SPICE PORK LOIN ROAST (Sunday)

1 cup unsweetened applesauce

1/3 cup packed brown sugar

2 teaspoons cider vinegar

1 teaspoon prepared mustard

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1 tablespoon flour

1/2 teaspoon coarse salt

1/4 teaspoon sugar

1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

1/8 teaspoon pepper

1 (3- to 4-pound) well-trimmed boneless pork loin roast

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Mix together applesauce, brown sugar, vinegar, mustard and cloves; refrigerate half of mixture and set aside the remaining amount. In a small bowl, combine flour, salt, sugar, garlic powder and pepper. Rub flour mixture evenly over entire surface of pork. Place pork on rack in shallow roasting pan. Roast 40 minutes, uncovered, or until internal temperature is 135 degrees. Spoon reserved applesauce mixture over pork. Continue roasting until internal temperature reaches 145 degrees (8 to 12 minutes). Transfer roast to serving platter; cover with foil and let stand for 5 minutes before slicing. In a small pan, heat refrigerated applesauce mixture until boiling; boil 1 minute. Spoon heated applesauce mixture over pork slices. Serves 12.

Per serving: 201 calories, 23 grams protein, 8 grams fat (35 percent calories from fat), 2.8 grams saturated fat, 9 grams carbohydrate, 64 milligrams cholesterol, 133 milligrams sodium, no fiber.

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PENNE WITH SPINACH AND OLIVES (Tuesday)

12 ounces penne or other tube-shaped pasta

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

3 cloves garlic, crushed

2 cups chopped fresh spinach

1/4 cup kalamata olives (pitted, chopped)

2 tablespoons rinsed capers

1 (3.5-ounce) package (about 3/4 cup) reduced-fat crumbled feta cheese with tomatoes and basil (or plain)

Cook pasta according to directions. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine oil, vinegar and garlic; mix and let stand while pasta cooks. Add cooked pasta, spinach, olives, capers and feta; toss and serve. Serves 6.

Per serving: 309 calories, 11 grams protein, 9 grams fat (27 percent calories from fat), 2.2 grams saturated fat, 45 grams carbohydrate, 5 milligrams cholesterol, 415 milligrams sodium, 2 grams fiber.

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PUMPKIN PECAN CRUNCH (Thursday)

1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin

1 (12-ounce) can evaporated skim milk

3 eggs

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar

6 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice, divided

1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon salt (not coarse salt)

1 (2-layer size) yellow cake mix

1 cup chopped pecans

1 cup (2 sticks) butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix pumpkin, milk, eggs, both sugars, 5 teaspoons of the pumpkin pie spice, vanilla and salt in large bowl until well blended. Pour into 13-by-9-inch baking pan coated with cooking spray. Stir cake mix and remaining pumpkin pie spice in medium bowl with wire whisk. Sprinkle dry cake mix evenly over pumpkin mixture. Sprinkle with pecans. Drizzle evenly with melted butter. Bake 50 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm or at room temperature, topped with light whipped cream. Refrigerate leftover dessert. Makes 24 servings.

Per serving: 264 calories, 4 grams protein, 13 grams fat (44 percent calories from fat), 5.9 grams saturated fat, 34 grams carbohydrate, 44 milligrams cholesterol, 260 milligrams sodium, 1 gram fiber.