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The beautiful harvest moon is shining brightly in the night sky and fall is definitely in the air. The children are back in school and often parents are at a loss for preparing the perfect school lunch for their child or even for themselves. Here are some wonderful recipe ideas that will help make the planning easier. Enjoy!

Teriyaki Steak Sandwich

(One of our favorites!)

2/3 cup olive oil

1/3 cup honey

1/3 cup soy sauce

2 cloves garlic, chopped

2 tablespoons green onions, chopped

Dash of ground ginger

1 pound flank steak (London broil)

Sandwich rolls

Mix first 6 ingredients. Pour over steak in a non-metal baking dish. Marinate for a minimum of 6 hours or overnight. Grill or broil 4 minutes per side or until medium rare. Slice on diagonal and serve on rolls. (Note: Sauce may also be used on chicken). Yield: 4 servings.

Beef Barbecue Sandwiches

1 (6-pound) rump or chuck roast

1/2 stalk celery, chopped

3 large onions, chopped

1 (14-ounce) bottle ketchup

3 tablespoons barbecue sauce

1-1/2 cups water

3 tablespoons vinegar

3 tablespoons chili powder

1 tablespoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

Combine all ingredients, except meat, in a roasting pan, reserving some for top. Set rump or chuck roast on top; cover with reserved sauce ingredients. Place lid on pan and bake at 300° for 6 hours without looking at or checking it. When baked, remove from oven, separate or shred the meat with forks and mix in the sauce. Serve on sandwich rolls. Yield: 4 to 6 servings.

Reuben Sandwich

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1 tablespoon chili sauce

8 slices bread, (rye, pumpernickel, etc.)

4 ounces Swiss cheese slices, cut in half

1/2 pound corned beef, thinly sliced

1 cup sauerkraut, drained

Combine mayonnaise and chili sauce in a small bowl and mix until blended. Spread 1 tablespoon mayonnaise sauce on each bread slice. Top with 1 slice cheese, one-fourth of the corned beef, one-fourth cup sauerkraut and remaining cheese. Place remaining bread slice on top. Lightly spray large nonstick skillet with nonfat cooking spray; heat over medium heat. Place sandwiches into skillet; cook until browned on both sides and cheese is melted. Yield: 4 servings.

Turkey Burger Pita Pockets

2 cups shredded lettuce

1 cucumber, seeded and chopped

1 cup fat-free plain yogurt

1 tablespoon sesame seeds, toasted

1-1/2 pounds lean ground turkey

1/2 cup chopped onion

1 clove garlic, minced

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon dried basil

1/4 teaspoon dried rosemary

6 pita pockets

Combine lettuce, cucumber, yogurt and sesame seeds in mixing bowl to make a relish. Place in a serving bowl and set aside. Mix turkey, onion, garlic, oregano, basil and rosemary in a bowl. Form into 6 patties approximately 1/2-inch thick. Broil about 3 to 4 inches from the heat for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the juices run clear. Place in pita pockets and top with relish. Yield: 6 servings.

Vegetable Cottage Cheese Sandwich

1-1/2 cups low-fat cottage cheese

1-1/2 tablespoon dry skim milk powder

2 tablespoons water

1/2 teaspoon sugar

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1 tablespoon chopped onion

1/3 cup chopped carrot

1/4 cup chopped celery

Dash of garlic powder

Dash of Worcestershire sauce

Place cottage cheese, skim milk powder, water, sugar and lemon juice in a blender; blend until smooth. Scrape mixture from blender into bowl. Stir in vegetables, garlic and Worcestershire sauce. Spread one-half cup of mixture on two slices of bread (whole wheat, pumpernickel, pita, rye, Vienna or French bread. For a sack lunch, make a sandwich of the vegetable spread, lettuce and tomato slices). Yield: 5 (half-cup) servings of spread.

Seasoned Corn Casserole

1 medium-sized green pepper, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

1 clove garlic, crushed

2 teaspoons butter, melted

1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

2/3 cup skim milk

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon black pepper

1/8 teaspoon dried whole basil

1/8 teaspoon dried whole oregano

1 (16-ounce) can whole tomatoes, drained

1 (16-ounce) can pearl onions, drained

1 (12-ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained

Vegetable cooking spray

Sauté green pepper and garlic in butter in a large saucepan until green pepper is tender. Add flour, stirring until smooth. Cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Gradually add milk and seasonings to saucepan; cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture is thickened and bubbly. Stir in tomatoes, onions and corn. Remove from heat. Spoon mixture into a 2-quart casserole dish coated with cooking spray and bake at 350° for about 50 minutes. Yield: 8 servings.

Delicious Pumpkin Pie Cupcakes

1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin puree

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 cup brown sugar

2 large eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3/4 cup evaporated milk

2/3 cup all purpose flour

2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

Vegetable cooking spray

Preheat oven to 350°. Prepare 12 cup muffin tin by lightly spraying the muffin cups with cooking spray. Combine the pumpkin, sugar, brown sugar, eggs, vanilla extract and milk. Add the flour, pumpkin spice, salt, baking powder and baking soda to the mixture. Fill each muffin cup with 1/3 cup of the mixture. Bake for 20 minutes and let cool for about 25 to 30 minutes. Remove cupcakes from pan and chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. Top with whipped cream and additional pumpkin pie spice and serve. Yield: 12 cupcakes.

Spice Cupcakes

1-1/2 cups flour

1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon allspice

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon cloves

1/2 cup butter

2 eggs

2/3 cup sugar

1/2 cup white raisins

1/2 cup cold water

Preheat oven to 350°. Combine flour, baking powder, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg and cloves. Cut in butter until size of small peas. Add remaining ingredients; mix until entire mixture is moistened. Place 12 paper baking cups in muffin tin and fill about half full; bake until tester inserted in center comes out clean. Yield: 12 cupcakes.

Kitchen Tip:

To keep pasta warm for up to 1 hour without overcooking, place it in a colander set above a pot of simmering water. Cover until needed.

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