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pasta with beef and peppers
Pasta with Beef and Peppers

apple crisp
Apple Crisp

Menu Plan for the week of Oct. 18, 2013: Day 3 Recipes

Pasta with Beef and Peppers
Apple Crisp

Cooking time:  35 minutes for menu           Cooking schedule: see below for instructions

     We used flank steak for this but you could use a different cut or even sliced turkey or tofu.  Look for anything 'suitable for stir-fry'. If you have to buy a larger piece / quantity, freeze it.... We'll be using it again this winter.

Pasta with Beef and Peppers                       Preparation and cooking time: 25 minutes
An Italian stir-fry!  The beef and peppers will cook in less time than the pasta. This is not meant to have a 'sauce' in the traditional manner, but a light coating of flavors on the pasta and chunky beef and peppers on top.

10oz (300gr) flank steak or other beef / meat suitable for stir frying or quick cooking
1 medium onion
2 garlic cloves
1 green bell pepper
15oz (450gr) whole tomatoes
1/3 cup olives
1/2 tsp chili powder
4 tsp olive oil
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried basil
1 1/4 cups pasta - penne, rigatoni, rotelle

Cook pasta according to package directions. 
Peel and vertically slice (cut it in half first) the onion.  Peel and finely chop the garlic.  Pit the olives if necessary and cut in half.  Trim pepper and slice into strips.  Slice the beef on an angle across the grain, then cut the slices into large, bite-size pieces.
Heat 2 tsp oil in large non-stick skillet.  Add chili powder and sauté briefly.  Add onions, garlic, peppers and sauté until tender, 7 - 8 minutes.  Remove to a plate.   Heat remaining 2 tsp oil in same skillet.  Add beef and sauté until starting to brown, 3 - 4 minutes.  Open and drain the tomatoes, discarding or saving juices for another use.  Roughly chop the tomatoes.  Add the tomatoes to the beef and sauté 5 minutes.  Return peppers & onions to the pan and add olives and herbs.  Cover and simmer 5 minutes, until everything is heated through.  When pasta is done, drain and put into large pasta bowl.  Add beef and peppers and toss to combine.  Serve.

Individual Apple Crisps                                 Preparation and cooking time:   45 minutes
These little Crisps are quick to go together and bake in just 30 minutes. Perfect to have in the oven while you eat a leisurely dinner.  Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or yogurt if you like.  I use small baking dishes that are about 4" (10cm) in diameter. Granny Smith, Golden Delicious, Pink Lady are all good apple choices.

2 medium cooking apples, about 12oz total weight (360gr), depending on the size of your baking dishes
2 tbs brown sugar
2 tbs flour
2 tbs rolled oats    substitute 1 tbs more flour
2 tbs chilled butter
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
a bit more butter

Butter individual baking dishes or one small baking dish.   Mix sugar, spices, flour and oats.  Cut in butter, using a pastry cutter, 2 knives or forks, until it resembles small pebbles.  Peel and slice apples and spread in baking dishes.  Sprinkle crumble mixture over apples.   Bake 30 minutes at 375F (185C), until top is brown and apples are tender.  

Note:  If you use individual baking dishes, put them on a baking sheet to make handling easier.

Cooking schedule: 35 minutes
Assemble all food, utensils and serving dishes
Utensils: measuring cups, spoons, knives,
large skillet with lid, pot and colander for pasta, small
baking dish with lid or foil, medium bowl

Turn oven on, 375F (185C)
Butter baking dishes
Mix sugar, spices, flour, oats
Cut in butter
Peel, slice apples, arrange in dish(es)
Sprinkle crumble mix on apples, bake, set timer
Put water on high heat for pasta
Slice the onion, pepper
Mince the garlic
Heat oil in nonstick skillet

Add chili powder, sauté briefly
Add onions, peppers, garlic, sauté
Pit olives if needed, slice
Slice beef
Remove peppers, onions, add beef, sauté
Open, drain tomatoes, roughly chop tomatoes
Add tomatoes to beef, sauté
Start to cook pasta
Return peppers, onions, add herbs, olives
Cover, simmer
  Wee break while everything finishes
Drain pasta, put in bowl
Add beef and peppers, toss
Don't forget the Apple Crisp

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