Takeout at Home

When you’re craving wings, burgers, pizza or Thai, healthy revisions of your to-go menu favorites are in order

PHOTOGRAPHS BY Helene Dujardin

Red Curry Vegetables

(Serves 4)
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 yellow onion, sliced
1 red bell pepper, sliced
2 carrots, sliced
3 cloves garlic
1-inch knob fresh ginger, peeled and minced
1 cup broccoli florets
1 small zucchini, diced
1 Tbsp. red curry paste (more to taste depending on preferred level of spice)
1 can coconut milk
Juice of 1 lime
1 tsp. soy sauce or tamari
2½ cups cooked basmati rice
Fresh cilantro, peanuts and/or cashews, for topping (optional)

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion, bell pepper and carrots. Sauté the vegetables until slightly tender, five to seven minutes.

Add the garlic, ginger, broccoli and zucchini to the skillet. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until the broccoli and zucchini begin to turn tender, about three to four minutes.

Stir in the curry paste, toasting for one minute. Add the coconut milk and stir to combine, scraping up the curry from the bottom of the pan.

Reduce the temperature to medium-low and simmer for five to seven minutes, until all of the vegetables are tender. Turn off the heat and stir in the lime juice and soy sauce.

Serve hot over basmati rice. Top with cilantro and nuts, if desired.

Make it Your Own: For a protein boost, add tofu, rotisserie chicken or shrimp while the dish simmers in the coconut milk.

Nutrition facts (per serving, before toppings): 422 calories, 21g total fat, 14g saturated fat, 0mg cholesterol, 351mg sodium, 48g carbohydrates, 5g fiber, 10g sugar, 7g protein

Dry-Brined Chicken Wings with Buttermilk Herb Ranch

(Serves 4)
For the wings:
1/2 Tbsp. kosher salt
2 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. paprika
2 lbs. chicken wings

For the buttermilk herb ranch:
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup low-fat sour cream
2 tsp. mayonnaise
2 tsp. ranch seasoning (or 1 tsp. each garlic powder and onion powder)
1/4 tsp. black pepper
3 Tbsp. fresh dill, chives and/or parsley, plus more for topping

Make the dry brine spice blend by mixing together the salt, pepper, baking soda and paprika in a small bowl.

Pat the chicken wings dry using paper towels. In a large bowl, toss the chicken wings with the spice blend. Spread the wings out on a foil-lined sheet tray fitted with a wire rack. Let the wings rest in the refrigerator for at least one and up to eight hours.

When ready to cook, heat an oven to 425°F. Place the sheet tray in the oven on the top rack. Roast the wings for 20 minutes, then flip them to ensure even cooking. Continue cooking for 15 more minutes. Increase the heat to 450°F and cook for another five to seven minutes to achieve desired crispiness.

To make the ranch dip, whisk together all of the ingredients in a small bowl. Serve topped with black pepper and additional herbs.

Remove the wings from the oven and serve immediately with the buttermilk herb ranch alongside celery and carrot sticks.

Nutrition facts (per serving): 491 calories, 30g total fat, 8g saturated fat, 253mg cholesterol, 924mg sodium, 9g carbohydrates, 2g fiber, 4g sugar, 42g protein

Veggie Lover’s Pizza with Cauliflower Crust

(Serves 4)
For the crust:
5 cups cauliflower rice (found in the refrigerated produce section)
2 eggs
1/2 tsp. each salt and pepper
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese

For the tomato sauce:
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 shallot, diced
3 cloves garlic
1/4 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. tomato paste

1½ lbs. tomatoes, seeded and diced (seasonal heirloom tomatoes make for excellent sauce)
1/4 tsp. Italian seasoning

For the toppings:
Homemade tomato sauce (find the recipe at housecallsmag.com/veggiepizza)
4 oz. fresh mozzarella cheese
Red onion, bell pepper, zucchini, squash, cherry tomatoes and/or olives, thinly sliced
Salt and pepper, to finish
Crushed red pepper, optional
Fresh arugula, for serving

In a large skillet over medium heat, cook the cauliflower rice, stirring often, for eight to 10 minutes. Allow to cool.

Meanwhile, make the sauce. In a medium saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat, and sauté the shallot, garlic and salt for two to three minutes. Add the tomato paste and cook for one minute. Add the fresh tomatoes and Italian seasoning, and bring to a simmer. Cook until sauce breaks down and deepens in flavor, about 10 to 12 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Using cheesecloth or a clean kitchen towel, wring any moisture out of the cauliflower. Put the cooked cauliflower and remaining crust ingredients into a large bowl and combine well to make a dough. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Press the dough out onto the sheet tray, forming a 10- to 12-inch circle, about one-quarter of an inch thick.

Heat an oven or grill to 425°F. Place the sheet pan in the oven or the covered grill, and cook the crust for eight to 10 minutes, until the bottom is golden brown. When the crust is stable, flip it using a large spatula or a parchment-lined plate. Cook on the other side for three minutes. Remove the sheet pan from the heat.

Top the pizza crust with the tomato sauce and the mozzarella cheese, torn into small pieces. Add desired vegetable toppings. Finish the pizza with a sprinkle of salt, pepper and crushed red pepper (if using).

Return the pizza to the oven or covered grill. Cook until the cheese has melted and the pizza crust is cooked through, about eight to 10 minutes. Allow the pizza to rest for five minutes before topping with fresh arugula and serving.

Hot Tip: No one likes soggy pizza! To remove excess moisture from the zucchini and squash slices, salt the ribbons, allow to sit for 10 minutes and then pat dry

Nutrition facts (per serving): 306 calories, 15g total fat, 6g saturated fat, 124mg cholesterol, 862mg sodium, 25g carbohydrates, 8g fiber, 10g sugar, 19g protein

Black Bean & Veggie Burger
(Makes 6 patties)

2 cans low-sodium black beans, drained and rinsed
4 Tbsp. olive oil, divided
1 red onion, finely diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
1/2 cup mushrooms, diced
1 tsp. salt
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. chili powder
1/2 cup toasted walnuts
1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 egg, lightly beaten
3/4 cup panko bread crumbs

Burger buns or salad greens, plus toppings such as lettuce, tomato and onion, for serving

Heat oven to 350°F. Spread the black beans on a foil-lined sheet tray. Bake for 20 minutes, stirring halfway through, to dehydrate the beans a little. Remove from the oven and let cool.

In a medium skillet, heat two tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, pepper, mushrooms and salt, and cook until softened, about five to seven minutes. Add the garlic and chili powder, and cook one to two minutes more, stirring to toast the spices.

Transfer mixture to a large bowl to cool slightly.

In a food processor, pulse the black beans and walnuts until roughly chopped (but not puréed). Add the bean mixture to the bowl with the vegetables. Mix in the Worcestershire sauce, egg and panko, then stir to combine. Form the mixture into six patties.

In a large skillet, heat two tablespoons of olive oil until shimmering. Place the black bean patties in the skillet, and cook for five minutes on each side, until crispy and cooked through. Add more olive oil, if needed.

Serve with your favorite burger toppings and condiments.

Cook’s Choice: Oats can be substituted for the panko bread crumbs

Nutrition facts (per patty): 354 calories, 18g total fat, 3g saturated fat, 152mg cholesterol, 630mg sodium, 33g carbohydrates, 10g fiber, 3g sugar, 16g protein