Normally I wouldn’t use my blog as a pulpit for promoting products or services. But in this case I am making an exception. Russ recently found this offering from FineCooking.com, a food site where we’ve been satisfied members for years. It was intriguing enough that we decided to give it a try and we’re really glad we did!
For the low fee of $19.95 for one year’s worth of quick weeknight recipes, you receive 52 weeks of over 250 easy, 30-minute meals. Literally, less then a penny per day—not bad! Plus, you can download the plan and print out the included shopping list, or view it at the store on your mobile device. Destress and start the week with a stocked pantry and a ready plan for dinner every night.
Another plus is, they incorporate some of the same ingredients from one meal to another so that if followed, there is no waste. We’ve been picking and choosing usually two recipes from the supplied weekly total of five. And so far, our meals have been very good and down-right interesting. One of the first meals we made was the Spicy Chicken with Black Bean, Cranberry and Sweet Potato Salsa. This colorful all-in-one meal is full of bold Southwestern flavors, thanks to cumin, chili powder, and cayenne. It even suggested a side dish, in this case Roasted Cabbage Wedges. An odd combination, but it worked—and well! It found it’s way into our recipe bank for future repeats.
The prep is a bit time intensive with a fair amount of chopping and measuring, but once you start cooking, it goes fast.
- 4 Tbs. canola oil; more for the broiler pan
- 2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch dice
- 1/4 cup finely diced red or Vidalia onion
- Kosher salt
- 1 tsp. chili powder
- 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
- 1/8 tsp. cayenne
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
- 1 large clove garlic, mashed to a paste
- 1 tsp. finely grated lime zest
- 2-1/2 Tbs. fresh lime juice
- 1 15-oz. can black beans, rinsed
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Position a rack about 6 inches from the broiler and heat the broiler to high.
- Heat 2 Tbs. of the oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat. Add the sweet potatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, until almost tender, about 10 minutes. Stir in the onion, 1/2 tsp. salt, and 1/4 cup water. Cover and cook for 1 minute. Uncover and cook, stirring, until the onion and sweet potatoes are tender and the water has evaporated, about 3 minutes. Keep warm.
- Meanwhile, combine 1 tsp. salt with the chili powder, cumin, and cayenne in a small bowl.
- Butterfly each chicken breast by slicing it horizontally almost but not entirely in half so you can open it like a book. Rub the spices all over.
- Lightly oil a broiler pan, put the chicken on it, and broil, flipping once, until just cooked through, 5 to 6 minutes total.
- In a medium bowl, combine the garlic, lime zest, juice, and 2 Tbs. of the canola oil. Add the potatoes and onions, black beans, cranberries, and cilantro and toss gently to combine. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve with the chicken.
Directions for Roasted Cabbage Wedges
Cut small cabbage into thin wedges (four per half head), leaving the cores attached so that they stay intact. Brush the edges on both sides with olive oil and place on a foil-lined sheet. Sprinkle with salt, freshly ground pepper, and whole cumin seeds. Roast in a 450 degree oven, turning once, until tender and browned at the edges, about 30 minutes. Serve.