Monday, February 09, 2009

5 ways from 1: Marinara sauce

Take one key ingredient — your trusty jar of marinara sauce — and whip up five delicious meals! Think about that poor jar of marinara sauce sitting in your pantry. It's resigned to its fate of merely being warmed up and dumped into a pan of cooked pasta. If it's lucky, maybe it'll get a dusting of Parmesan cheese. Well, we've taken pity on the poor ingredient, and have found some exciting new ways to bring it on to the dinner table. Here are some of our favorite, easy recipes using the trusty jar of Marinara. Marinara sauce is a versatile ingredient. It’s cheap, comes in a range of flavours with herbs and spices and it’s ready to go! You can make a number of fast dishes using it as your base. Here are five of our favourite recipes: 1. Chilli shrimp Serves 4 – POINTS® value per serving: 2 Combine one jar of marinara sauce, 1/2 cup of water and 1 large fresh chilli in a large frying pan. Bring to the boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring occasionally for 3 minutes. Add 20 uncooked medium shrimp (peeled with tails intact) and spread out in a single layer. Cover and simmer over low heat for approximately 5 minutes, or until shrimp curl and change colour. Stir through 2 Tbsp of chopped flat leaf parsley. Season to taste with salt and pepper then serve. 2. Tuna pasta Serves 4 – POINTS value per serving: 5 Cook 6oz spiral pasta in a large pan of salted boiling water, following packet directions, until al dente. Drain. Meanwhile, bring one jar of marinara sauce to the boil in a large pan over medium heat. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 3 minutes. Add pasta, one 5 oz can of light tuna in water (drained and flaked), 2 oz of arugula leaves and 2 tsp capers. Stir until heated and arugula is just wilted. Season to taste with salt and pepper then serve. 3. Chicken cacciatore Serves 4 – POINTS value per serving: 6 Spray a large non-stick frying pan with cooking spray and place over medium-high heat. Add 1 chopped onion, 1/2 sliced red bell pepper and 1 clove crushed garlic. Cook, stirring for 10 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Add one jar marinara sauce, 12 sliced black olives and 1/2 cup chicken broth. Bring to boil then reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer uncovered for 10 minutes. Meanwhile preheat a grill pan on high. Spray 3 skinless chicken breast fillets with cooking spray and grill for 3 minutes each side, or until cooked through. Slice each breast on the bias into 3/4 inch slices and divide among four plates. Spoon cacciatore sauce over chicken and serve with mixed salad leaves. 4. Tomato vegetable bake with mozzarella Serves 4 – POINTS value per serving: 7 Heat 1 Tbsp olive oil in a large non-stick frying pan and place over medium-high heat. Add 1 chopped onion and 1 clove crushed garlic. Cook, stirring for 5 minutes or until onion is tender. Add 1 chopped chilli, 2 sliced zucchini, 1 cup mushrooms, 1 chopped red bell pepper, 1/2 chopped eggplant and 2 cups chopped sweet potato. Cook stirring for a further 5 minutes. Add one jar marinara and 1/2 cup vegetable broth. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Transfer vegetable mixture to an oven proof dish. Sprinkle with 4 oz reduced-fat mozzarella and bake in a preheated 350F oven for 30 minutes, or until vegetables are tender and cheese has melted and is golden brown. 5. Tomato, ham and mushroom pizzas Serves 4 – POINTS value per serving: 6 Preheat oven to 425F. Spread 4 small pieces of whole wheat pita bread with 1/2 cup marinara sauce. Add 2 cups sliced mushrooms, 8 oz shaved lean ham, 12 chopped black olives and 4 oz reduced fat mozzarella cheese. Bake in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes, or until cheese is golden and bubbling. Scatter with 1 cup baby spinach leaves or arugula leaves if desired. Serve.
Courtesy of Weight Watchers

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