Tuesday, January 03, 2006

'06 New Year's Food Resolutions: #3 Plan for Easy Weeknight Meals

Often J and I end up in the grocery on Sunday afternoons, a cart partially full of our Trader Joe's standards (yogurt, breakfast bars, dried mango), standing in the freezing frozen foods aisle, asking each other, "So...whaddya wanna eat for dinner this week?" This usually results in one of two answers: 1) "I dunno..let's get outta here, we'll think of something during the week and pick it up after work." Yeah, right. 2) "Ummm...I dunno...just get some frozen tortellini and maybe some pizza dough." Wow, how delicous and healthy. Not.

Sometimes we plan ahead and have a list, but even then, we often resort to boring standbys. We both tend to work late and cooking rarely sounds thrilling at 8:30 pm when you're starving, but there has to be more to life than pasta and sauce, right? So, we've started a weeknight meals file with recipes and notes on simple things we've made in the past. Each weekend before grocery shopping, we'll pick out 3-4 meals and make a list accordingly. This is the ideal plan of course, but for the first week of '06 we're on track. Tonight was zucchini and black bean quesadillas; sausage and fennel gratin and almond crusted salmon are on tap.

The quesadillas are super simple: shred a few zukes, toss with some salt in a colander and really squeeze to get as much water out as possible. Toss water-less zucchini in a bowl with black beans, chopped scallions, shredded cheese, a little salsa (I love those small cans of salsa--see photo), salt and pepper. Heat your pan, get your tortillas buttered, fill with zucchini mixture and fry 'em up.

(This recipe, with more precise measurements, orginally came from The Splendid Table's Weeknight Kitchen email newsletter, which I highly recommend)

No comments: