Menu planner: Grilled steak and watermelon salad just the ticket for the 4th of July


Grilled steak and watermelon salad

Makes 4 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 10 to 15 minutes for steak; 2 to 4 minutes for watermelon

INGREDIENTS

1 teaspoon ground coriander

1 teaspoon cumin

4 beef tenderloin steaks, cut 1 inch thick (4 to 5 ounces each)

2 slices seedless baby watermelon, 1 inch thick (about 1 pound each)

Coarse salt and pepper to taste

8 cups baby arugula or spinach leaves

1/4 cup reduced-fat balsamic or Italian dressing

1 cup halved cherry tomatoes

1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion

1/4 cup Greek feta cheese, crumbled

Combine coriander and cumin; press evenly onto steaks. Place steaks in center of grid over medium ash-covered coals; arrange watermelon around steak. Grill steaks, covered, 10 to 15 minutes for medium-rare to medium. Turn occasionally. Grill watermelon 2 to 4 minutes or until grill marks form, turning once. Carve steaks into slices. Cut each watermelon slice into 6 wedges. Season beef and watermelon with salt and pepper as desired.

Combine greens and dressing in large bowl; toss to coat. Divide among 4 serving plates. Arrange beef and watermelon on salad; top evenly with tomatoes, onion and cheese.

Per serving: 241 calories, 25 grams protein, 9 grams fat (33% calories from fat), 3.8 grams saturated fat, 18 grams carbohydrate, 68 milligrams cholesterol, 350 milligrams sodium, 2 grams fiber.

Carb count: 1.

Mediterranean lamb cutlets with kiwi salad

Makes 6 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes; refrigeration time: 2 hours

Cooking time: Less than 10 minutes

For the lamb:

1 peeled kiwi, halved

1/2 cup reduced-fat sour cream

1 clove garlic, crushed

12 lamb rib chops (cutlets), 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick

For the salsa:

3 kiwis, peeled and chopped

1 medium fresh peach, peeled and chopped

1 small papaya, peeled, seeded and chopped

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

Place 1 kiwi, sour cream and garlic in food processor or blender and puree until just blended and kiwi seeds are not broken; set aside. Place lamb in large bowl. Pour kiwi mixture over lamb; turn to coat. Cover and refrigerate 2 hours.

Meanwhile, for the salsa, combine 3 kiwis, peach, papaya, lime juice and cilantro in small bowl; set aside. To cook cutlets, brush excess marinade from cutlets and discard marinade. Grill or broil cutlets 2 to 3 minutes per side on medium or until desired doneness. Serve with salsa.

Per serving: 240 calories, 28 grams protein, 9 grams fat (35% calories from fat), 3.2 grams saturated fat, 11 grams carbohydrate, 87 milligrams cholesterol, 80 milligrams sodium, 2 grams fiber.

Carb count: 0.5.

Blueberry ice cream pie

Makes 10 servings

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Freezing time: 2 hours; standing time: 5 minutes

INGREDIENTS

3/4 cup blueberry pie filling

2 pints vanilla ice cream, slightly softened

1 (6-ounce) graham cracker piecrust

1/2 cup strawberry sauce

Light whipped cream and any fresh berries for garnish

Mix pie filling and 1 pint ice cream; spread in crust. Top with remaining ice cream; freeze until firm. Remove from freezer 5 minutes before serving. Slice, top with strawberry sauce, garnish with whipped cream and berries, and serve.

Per serving: 274 calories, 3 grams protein, 11 grams fat (35% calories from fat), 4.8 grams saturated fat, 42 grams carbohydrate, 23 milligrams cholesterol, 142 milligrams sodium, 1 gram fiber.

Carb count: 3.

Tuna salad on mixed greens

In a food processor, puree 2 slices whole-grain bread, 1/2 cup unsalted chicken broth, 1/4 cup chopped walnuts, 1/4 cup fat-free plain yogurt, 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice, 2 cloves garlic and a pinch of cayenne pepper. Transfer to a bowl and add 2 (6-ounce) cans drained and flaked water-packed albacore tuna, 2 medium chopped carrots, 2 ribs chopped celery and 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill; mix gently. Season with coarse salt and pepper. Spoon the salad onto a bed of mixed greens.

Mexican baked potatoes

Slash and fluff hot baked potatoes. Top each one with 1/4 cup salsa, 2 tablespoons canned reduced-sodium black beans (rinsed) and 2 tablespoons shredded 50% light cheddar cheese. Place under broiler and cook 1 minute or until cheese melts. Top each potato with 1 tablespoon chopped green onions.

Pepper jack and turkey sandwiches

Spread whole-grain bread slices with spicy ground mustard. Layer romaine, sliced pepper jack cheese, deli smoked turkey slices and sliced tomatoes. Halve sandwiches and serve with baked potato wedges (coated with cooking spray and baked at 425 degrees for 10 minutes).

Sloppy Joe pierogies

Boil 1 (16.9-ounce) package frozen potato-and-cheddar pierogies according to directions; drain well. Meanwhile, heat a large nonstick skillet on medium. Cook 1 pound ground turkey breast 5 minutes or until it’s no longer pink. Add 1/2 cup minced carrots and 1/2 cup minced onions; cook and stir 4 minutes or until soft. Stir in 1 (15.5-ounce) can sloppy Joe sauce; bring to a boil. Remove from heat; fold in drained pierogies. Serve in soup bowls.