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The ideal 5-in-1 meal

Updated: March 10, 2011 11:49 AM EST
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  • RecipesMore>>

  • Tomato Basil Pasta, 9/1/14

    Tomato Basil Pasta, 9/1/14

    Monday, September 1 2014 12:26 PM EDT2014-09-01 16:26:50 GMT
    Serge KrikorianDinner's Ready2 Servings2 Tbls. Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided5 Tbls. Unsalted Butter, divided (NOT margarine)1 tsp. Minced Garlic1 Shallot, minced1 Pt. Grape or Cherry Tomatoes, cut in half lengthwise8-10 Leaves Fresh Basil, cut into ribbonsSalt Ground Black Pepper, to tasteGrated Parmigiano reggiano cheese, for garnish4 oz. Penne Pasta (or pasta of your choice), cooked according to package directionsOption Add-Ins: Diced Grilled Chicken, Sauteed Shrimp, sauteed sliced fresh...More >>
    Serge KrikorianDinner's Ready2 Servings2 Tbls. Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided5 Tbls. Unsalted Butter, divided (NOT margarine)1 tsp. Minced Garlic1 Shallot, minced1 Pt. Grape or Cherry Tomatoes, cut in half lengthwise8-10 Leaves Fresh Basil, cut into ribbonsSalt Ground Black Pepper, to tasteGrated Parmigiano reggiano cheese, for garnish4 oz. Penne Pasta (or pasta of your choice), cooked according to package directionsOption Add-Ins: Diced Grilled Chicken, Sauteed Shrimp, sauteed sliced fresh...More >>
  • Spicy Poached Eggs in Tomato Sauce, 8/27/14

    Spicy Poached Eggs in Tomato Sauce, 8/27/14

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 11:49 AM EDT2014-08-27 15:49:39 GMT
    Gary DukeAlley Oops4 tomatoes, chopped2 tablespoon olive oil1/2 onion, sliced thinlysalt, black pepper, crushed red pepper and garlic to taste4 eggsfresh mozzarella cheese, cubedparmesan cheesefresh basilbread slices1. In a sauce pan, cook the onions in the olive oil for a few minutes, add the tomatoes and seasoning to mixture and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cover, simmer for an additional 15 or 20 minutes.2. Uncover sauce and gentle crack the eggs evenly around your tomato sauce. Place ...More >>
    Gary DukeAlley Oops4 tomatoes, chopped2 tablespoon olive oil1/2 onion, sliced thinlysalt, black pepper, crushed red pepper and garlic to taste4 eggsfresh mozzarella cheese, cubedparmesan cheesefresh basilbread slices1. In a sauce pan, cook the onions in the olive oil for a few minutes, add the tomatoes and seasoning to mixture and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cover, simmer for an additional 15 or 20 minutes.2. Uncover sauce and gentle crack the eggs evenly around your tomato sauce. Place ...More >>
  • Summer Shrimp Salad, 8/25/14

    Summer Shrimp Salad, 8/25/14

    Monday, August 25 2014 8:49 AM EDT2014-08-25 12:49:13 GMT
    Capi PeckTrio'sServes 41 1/4 lbs. large Gulf shrimp in the shell2 ears corn on the cobs, steamed, grilled or roasted/ kernels removedFor the dressing:2 cloves garlic, smashed1 1/2 t. cumin1 t. paprika1/2 t. cayenne pepper1/2 c. lime juice1c. olive oil1/2 c. cilantro leavessalt to tasteCombine all dressing ingredients in bowl or jar. Whisk or shake well to combine. Set aside.2 Haas avocados, sliced1/2 c. cilantro leaves8 cups arugula or other greens of your choice?1 half Vidalia or sweet onion...More >>
    Capi PeckTrio'sServes 41 1/4 lbs. large Gulf shrimp in the shell2 ears corn on the cobs, steamed, grilled or roasted/ kernels removedFor the dressing:2 cloves garlic, smashed1 1/2 t. cumin1 t. paprika1/2 t. cayenne pepper1/2 c. lime juice1c. olive oil1/2 c. cilantro leavessalt to tasteCombine all dressing ingredients in bowl or jar. Whisk or shake well to combine. Set aside.2 Haas avocados, sliced1/2 c. cilantro leaves8 cups arugula or other greens of your choice?1 half Vidalia or sweet onion...More >>

By Gail Belsky

What dish can you cook once -- and eat five different ways on five different nights?

Answer: braised short ribs.

The initial one-pot meal takes less than an hour to prepare, followed by three hours of slow cooking in the oven. But if you double the recipe, you'll have enough left over to create four more ideal meals to finish off the week.

Just shred the beef and keep it in the fridge along with the braising juice and leftover vegetables. Or, separate and freeze for later use.


Night 1: Braised short ribs

There are plenty of ways to cook braised short ribs, but the classic includes a combination of red wine, carrots, celery, onions, garlic, thyme, and canned tomatoes or tomato paste. Look through your favorite cookbooks or search online to pick out a recipe you like.


Night 2: Short-rib shepherd's pie

  • Saute one chopped carrot and one chopped onion, or heat leftover short-rib vegetables in a little braising liquid.
  • Add 2 cups of shredded meat, sprinkle with flour, and continue to saute, stirring for a few minutes.
  • Add 1 cup of red wine, bring to a boil, and stir until thickened.
  • Add 1 cup of frozen peas. Salt and pepper to taste.
  • Pour into a 9-inch square or small, rectangular baking dish and top with creamy mashed potatoes.
  • Bake at 350 F until bubbly and slightly browned on top (around 30-40 minutes).


Night 3: Pulled short-rib sandwiches

  • Pile shredded beef onto rolls.
  • Add your favorite condiment or sauce: pesto, hoisin sauce, Korean barbeque sauce, coleslaw, relish, horseradish mayo, etc.
  • Optional: grill on crusty bread with cheddar (or provolone) cheese and thin-sliced red onions. Kids can eat theirs plain on hamburger rolls as Sloppy Joes.


Night 4: Short-rib ragu over pasta

  • Put shredded beef, leftover vegetables and braising liquids in a large pot.
  • Add:
    • 1 can of crushed tomato (with juice)
    • 1 bay leaf
    • 1 or 2 sprigs of thyme and 1 teaspoon of dried oregano
    • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Bring to a boil, and then simmer for 20 to 30 minutes.
  • Remove bay leaf and thyme, add 1/4 to 1/2 cup of cream or milk. Simmer another minute.
  • Pour short-rib sauce over pappardelle or rigatoni.


Night 5: Short-rib tacos

  • Reheat shredded meat in the microwave and load into soft or hard tacos.
  • Top with various taco condiments, like corn salsa, avocado, chopped cilantro, chopped raw onions, shredded Monterey Jack or other cheese, shredded cabbage or lettuce, sour cream, etc.


Gail Belsky
has worked on a variety of women's publications, including Parents, Working Mother and All You. She recently wrote a book for women entitled The List: 100 Ways to Shake up Your Life. She is the managing editor of Ideas That Spark.

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