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Volume II
June 4, 2010

One Skillet Meal Appeal
By Jeanne Wolfley

Many of your family’s favorite meals can be prepared with the ease of using one pan. Using just a skillet will no doubt will make for a trouble-free cleanup. Another constructive reason for making one-skillet dinners is the simplicity of being able to serve the meal directly from the pan to the plate.

Although serving from the skillet creates a casual setting, it also gives the warm feeling of a casual family dinner. Skillet meals are very much like making a casserole only without having to use as many pans and bowls. Cooking in one pan unquestionably makes for shorter preparation time. If you aren’t already doing some skillet dinners I highly endorse them.

1. First, you need to have a large skillet. I prefer a stainless steel or cast iron pan over aluminum or Teflon coated. A stainless steel or cast iron pan will not only conduct the heat better but also has the advantage of outlasting the other skillets but, of course, this is a personal choice.

2. Once you have established a few recipes your family will thoroughly enjoy, skillet dinners will become a no-brainer to serve for many of your family meals.

Tex Mex One-Skillet Dinner

1 pound lean ground beef
½ cup of chopped onion
16 ounces pinto beans
1 cup water
½ cup white rice
1 teaspoon chili powder
½ Teaspoon cumin powder
2 – 10 ounce cans of diced tomatoes with green chilies
¾ cup of shredded cheddar cheese
1 cup frozen corn

In a skillet, cook the ground beef and onion. Drain off any oils.

Stir in undrained tomatoes with chilies, pinto beans, water, rice, chili powder, cumin and corn and bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer about 20 – 25 minutes until the rice is cooked. Sprinkle with cheese and serve.

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Beef and Zucchini One-Skillet Dinner

1 pound ground beef
½ cup of chopped onion
2 cloves of garlic (minced)
1 (8 ounce) can of diced tomatoes
1 Teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
½ Teaspoon oregano
1/8 Teaspoon nutmeg
6 cups of small cut-up zucchini
½ cup of grated Parmesan cheese
¼ cup bulgur (cracked, dehydrated wheat; can be bought at most grocery stores)

In a large skillet, cook the ground beef, onion, and garlic until meat is cooked. Drain off oils.

Stir in un-drained tomatoes, Worcestershire sauce, Oregano and Nutmeg into your skillet and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 5 minutes. Stir in zucchini, bulgur and ¼ cup cheese. Sprinkle the remaining ¼ cup of cheese on top.

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Ramen Noodle Chicken Lo Mein

2 packages ramen noodle soup mix
3 cups boiling water
2 cups chicken broth
2 Tablespoons corn starch
1 red pepper (sliced)
1 green pepper (sliced)
3 cloves of minced garlic
2 cup mushrooms
1 ½ cups snow peas
2 skinless chicken breast (sliced)
2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 Tablespoons soy sauce

Break the noodles in a large bowl and sprinkle with 1 seasoning packet and cover with the 3 cups of boiling water, set aside.

In a bowl, combine chicken broth and corn starch.

In a large skillet, heat oil and stir fry all vegetables until tender. Remove from skillet and set aside.

Add remaining 1 Tablespoon oil into the skillet and cook the thinly sliced strips of chicken. Cook for 3-5 minutes

Stir in the chicken broth and corn starch mixture into the skillet; bring to a boil and add vegetables. Drain noodles from bowl and add to skillet along with soy sauce. Continue cooking until the mixture is heat through and sauce is thick.

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Serve these recipes with a dinner salad and rolls to complete your meal!

* DVO welcomes your kitchen hints and cooking or nutrition questions! Email us and we'll post your hints and Q/A's in upcoming newsletters! *

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