Back when Chester and I first moved in together, we used to go to the grocery store almost every day after work to pick up ingredients for dinner. That was a pain. Now, we’ve gotten a lot better about planning out a week’s worth of dinners so we can just make one trip a week. Since our local Shop Rite is pretty crazy (actually, I’m pretty sure that all Shop Rites, everywhere, are crazy), one visit a week is really just about all that one person can handle.
On Sundays, we consult our cookbooks and recipes pinned on Pinterest or bookmarked from blogs and magazines that I read and head to the grocery store with our list (which Chester manages to fit onto a single Post-it note each week). We’ve come across a lot of good recipes lately, so I figured I would start sharing them in case you are looking for some things to add to your own meal plans. Plus, I have this cool new 50mm lens that I need to practice using, so taking pictures of what I’ve eaten for dinner this past week seems like a good way to do that.
This recipe comes from Martha Stewart’s Great Food Fast, which is one of our most frequently used cookbooks, since it includes more than 200 recipes are pretty easy to prepare after we come home from the gym. The recipes are arranged by season, so you can choose from the heartier dishes in the winter and lighter options at other times of year. Then, there are some, like this pasta, with its bright lemon flavor and sweet peas that work just about anytime of the year.
I worked late. We had takeout.
Tuesday: Chicken and Broccoli Rice Bowl
I recently started subscribing to Cooking Light since it’s packed pretty much from cover to cover with recipes. The magazine’s website is also a good resource because it breaks down the recipes into several collections, including those that take just 20 to 40 minutes to prepare or that use just five ingredients.
Be aware that some of the recipes do contain canned or processed items, so, you might want to make some substitutions to avoid increasing the sodium content. This rice bowl, for example called for Velveeta Cheese. Eww. We substituted a bit of sharp cheddar and also added garlic, which is pretty much the base for everything when we cook. This recipe would have been kind of bland without it.
From time to time, I convince Chester to eat a meatless meal. He usually complains that he still feels hungry afterwards. This time was no exception. If you ask me, though, Portobello mushrooms are hearty enough that you don’t need a protein to accompany them. This sandwich is a good one to keep in mind as grilling season gets underway. We couldn’t find basil at the grocery store this past week, and I think that would have been a nice touch in this sandwich and I’ll definitely make sure to add it next time around.
Thursday: Avocado Pasta
Avocados are one of the foods that I just can’t seem to get enough of lately, which is why I was thrilled to come across this recipe from Two Peas and Their Pod, via Pinterest. The sauce comes together quickly in the food processor, and is so rich that you would think that there is cream or butter included. We added chicken, since one vegetarian meal this week was enough for Chester.
I’ve only recently become a fan of arugula. Now, I love the slightly spicy flavor that it adds to everything—from pizza, to sandwiches, to salads like this one. We added red onions and a bit of Dijon mustard to the simple olive oil based dressing and skipped the croutons. We had a particularly sweet batch of grape tomatoes, which was a nice compliment to the peppery greens.
So, that’s what was for dinner this week. And, if you’ve been reading this blog for the last year, wondering if I ever eat at home, now you know that I do.
What are your go-to sources or favorite recipes for easy weeknight meals?