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Video: Sole, steak and more: Make 4 meals for the week

TODAY recipes
updated 2/15/2013 5:15:24 PM ET 2013-02-15T22:15:24

Looking to make just one trip to the grocery store this week? Plan ahead with chef Sunny Anderson's "mapped out" meals for easy weeknight cooking. Here, she makes grilled chicken, lemon sole, shepherd's "pan" and steak soup.

Grocery list:

  • 3 lemons
  • 1 Vidalia or sweet onion
  • 1 red onion
  • ½ pound white mushrooms
  • 2 scallions
  • 2 bunches Swiss chard
  • Fresh mint
  • Fresh oregano
  • Fresh thyme
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • Kalamata olives
  • 1 seedless cucumber
  • 1 can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 plum tomatoes
  • Tomato paste
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • Pickled jalapenos
  • 2 Yukon gold or russet potatoes
  • Walnut halves
  • Greek yogurt
  • Butter
  • Parmesan cheese
  • 4 ounces crumbled feta cheese
  • Sour cream
  • Shredded pepper jack, white cheddar, Monterey jack or a cheese blend
  • 4 fillets lemon sole
  • 1 pound beef "fajita" or "stir fry" strips
  • 1 ½ pounds ground chuck (80% lean beef, 20% fat)
  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • All-purpose flour
  • Ground cumin
  • Garlic powder
  • Hungarian hot paprika
  • Dried basil
  • Capers
  • Chicken stock
  • Beef stock
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • Honey
  • Dijon mustard
  • Fresh white bread, sliced
  • Tortilla chips
  • Couscous
  • Olive oil
  • Frozen peas and carrots
Recipe: Easy grilled chicken breasts and Greek salad couscous (on this page) Recipe: Sunny's baked lemon sole with sautéed Swiss chard (on this page) Recipe: Shepherd's "pan" (on this page) Recipe: Steak soup (on this page)

© 2013 NBCNews

Recipe: Easy grilled chicken breasts and Greek salad couscous

  • For the chicken:
  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint
  • 1/4 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Black pepper
  • For the couscous:
  • 1 cup couscous
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 1/2 cup sliced Kalamata olives
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 4 ounces crumbled feta cheese
  • 1 cup chopped seedless cucumber
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil

Marinate the chicken: In a large resealable plastic bag, add the chicken, lemon zest, juice, honey, oregano, mint, yogurt, olive oil, salt and a few coarse grinds of pepper. Seal bag and mix everything together by squishing around. Rest on the counter for 2 hours.

(Or refrigerate for two hours, then rest two more hours on the countertop before cooking. Cooking meats when they are at room temperature keeps them juicy and allows them to cook properly and evenly throughout. Do not rest meat at room temperature for more than two hours).

Grill the chicken: Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Heat grill or grill pan to medium-high heat. Remove the chicken from the bag and pat dry. Season both sides gently with salt and pepper. Add the chicken, smooth side down, to the grill and cook until a peek beneath reveals deep, golden grill marks and the chicken easily releases from the grill, about 5 minutes. Flip and cook 4 minutes more. Place on a baking sheet in the oven to keep warm while making the couscous.

Make the couscous: In a large bowl combine the couscous, mustard, tomatoes, red onion, olives, oregano and basil. In a medium pot on high heat bring the chicken stock, zest and lemon juice to a boil. Pour boiling liquid over the couscous mixture and cover immediately and tightly with a lid or plastic wrap. Wait 5 minutes, then add the feta and cucumber. Fluff with a fork, add the olive oil and fluff again. (No salt is needed for this, the stock, olives and feta should do the trick!) Serve warm with sliced chicken over the top.

Serving Size

Makes 4 to 6 servings

Recipe: Sunny's baked lemon sole with sautéed Swiss chard

  • For breadcrumb topping:
  • 4 fresh white bread slices, crusts removed and quartered
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1/4 cup walnut halves
  • 1/4 cup grated (like sand, not shredded) parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • For the sole:
  • 4 fillets lemon sole, rinsed and patted dry
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon
  • 3 tablespoons capers
  • 4 tablespoons butter, plus extra for casserole
  • 1 clove garlic, grated on a rasp
  • For the Swiss chard:
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, grated on a rasp
  • 2 bunches Swiss chard, leaves removed and chopped, ribs saved

Make the topping: In a food processor combine bread, lemon zest, walnuts and cheese. Pulse until almost uniform in texture. Continue pulsing while drizzling in olive oil. Set aside.

Prepare the fish: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a small saucepan melt butter, lemon juice and capers. Season fish with salt and pepper. Place each piece of fish in piece of parchment with a few inches around the length to use as handles when removing from the dish after cooking.

Place these pieces side-by-side in a 9 x 13-inch casserole. Pour butter mixture evenly over each fish compartment, and sprinkle the tops with the breadcrumb mixture. Bake uncovered for 15 to 20 minutes. Once ready to serve, remove each filet individually by lifting the parchment on either side of the filet, then sliding each filet on to each plate.

Prepare the Swiss chard: In a large skillet over medium heat add the oil, garlic, Swiss chard ribs and sauté until wilted, about 2 minutes. Then add the leaves and continue to cook until leaves wilt, another 2 minutes. Taste and season with a pinch of salt and a few grinds of pepper. Serve warm with the sole over top.

Serving Size

Makes 4 servings

Recipe: Shepherd's "pan"

  • For the potatoes:
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 Yukon gold or russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 3/4 - inch cubes
  • Kosher salt and black pepper
  • For the beef:
  • 1 cup chopped Vidalia or sweet onion
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground chuck (80% lean beef, 20% fat), room temperature
  • 6-8 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves stripped and gently chopped
  • 1 teaspoon Hungarian hot paprika
  • 1 clove garlic, grated on a rasp
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup beef stock
  • 10 ounces frozen peas and carrots
  • For the garnish:
  • Shredded pepper jack, white cheddar, Monterey jack or a cheese blend
  • Chopped parsley

Prepare the potatoes: In a large sauté pan on medium-high heat add the butter, olive oil, potatoes, a pinch of salt and a few grinds of black pepper. Cook without tossing until a golden crust develops on the bottom of a few potato cubes.

Toss, then repeat until most sides of the potatoes have a golden crust, about 6 to 8 minutes total. Remove to a plate with a slotted spoon. Leave the remaining fat for the next step.

Cook the beef: To the same large pan on medium-high heat add the onion and pepper, and cook until slightly tender, about 4 minutes. Add the beef, thyme, paprika, garlic, Worcestershire sauce and tomato paste, salt and a few grinds of pepper.

Cook while stirring until beef is browned, about 8 minutes. Sprinkle over flour and stir to combine. Add back to the pan the reserved potatoes, peas and carrots, and the stock. Raise to a simmer and cook until stock thickens, about 2 more minutes. Serve warm with a sprinkle of cheese and parsley.

Serving Size

Makes 4 to 6 servings

Recipe: Steak soup

  • For the beef:
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 pound beef "fajita" or "stir fry" strips
  • For the soup base:
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more if needed
  • 1 cup chopped Vidalia or sweet onion
  • 1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 4 cups beef broth
  • 1/4 cup sliced pickled jalapenos
  • 1 cup crushed canned tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 3 cups tortilla chips, crumbled
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced at an angle

Rub and rest the beef: In a small bowl, combine cumin, garlic powder, thyme, salt, pepper and olive oil. Add the beef strips and rub the spice blend over all sides of the beef. Let rest at room temperature, about 15 minutes.

Make the soup base: (While the beef is resting, do this step to stay under 20 minutes.) In a large pot, add the oil and heat over medium heat. Add the onions and sauté until tender, about 4 minutes. Stir in the mushrooms and garlic and sauté until mushrooms are tender, adding extra oil if needed. Pour in the broth, jalapenos and crushed tomatoes. Bring to a boil then reduce and simmer while grilling beef.

Grill the beef: Preheat a grill or grill pan to medium-high heat. Add beef strips being sure to not overcrowd and grill until charred on both sides, about 2 to 3 minutes per side. Remove to the pot of soup and cook soup until beef is desired doneness or serve right away for medium rare strips in the soup. Top each bowl with a dollop of sour cream, tortilla chips and a sprinkle of scallions.

Serving Size

Makes 4 to 6 servings

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