Hi, Fellow Chefs. Summer break is upon us! Does that fill you with joy, anxiety, or a little of both? I guess I would have to say both. Our summer is pretty well booked up with a family trip, day camps, and lots of outings like the beach, museums, zoos, etc. I’m sure I’ll be glad for the school routine to return come August! What will you do this summer?
Now, let’s talk about my favorite thing: The Food. My weekly dinner menus usually feature a wide variety of dishes that don’t repeat many flavors or ingredients. This week I decided to try reusing ingredients to make for a shorter and more economical shopping list. For example, cheddar cheese, cabbage, shredded carrots, and Ranch dressing appear more than once. Let me know in the comments how you feel about this style of meal planning.
- Ranch Turkey Club Salad with Herbed Garlic Bread – This was *almost* a no-cook dinner, but I couldn’t resist adding bacon. OK, then I made garlic bread too, but it could have just as easily been plain sourdough. This salad was rich and satisfying, even better than a club sandwich if you ask me! The garlic bread comes from my Shrimp Boil Dinner recipe.
- Easy Tuna Casserole from Scratch – I didn’t grow up eating tuna casserole, but I’ve tried making it a few times over the years. Most of the recipes I’ve found involve some sort of canned soup, and I wanted to try making one from scratch. I also threw in lots of veggies to make it a one-dish meal. I think you will like the result. We sure did!
- Buffalo Chicken Wraps – Who doesn’t love a fun, tasty meal that takes under 20 minutes to prepare? Serve with fries if you have time, or choose chips, apple slices, and grape tomatoes for a fast dinner with easy cleanup.
- Steak with Pretty Pasta Salad – You know I don’t like to boss you when it comes to steak because I’m sure you already have a tried and true method. Try out my Irish Whiskey Marinade if you like, or use your own fabulous judgement. This pasta salad is simple to throw together, can be made ahead of time, and is OK unrefrigerated for a few hours. If this dinner doesn’t beg for a cookout, I don’t know what does! (How about adding Award-Winning Banana Pudding for dessert?)
- Chili Lime Fish Tacos – This is another 15-minute dinner, perfect for a busy weeknight. I used red snapper this time, which I wouldn’t recommend because it had bones. (Maybe that was just my bad luck, but it’s not the first time that has been a problem with this type of fish.) Salmon, mahi mahi, or catfish would be better choices.
- Homemade Pizza with Yogurt Crust – This is not the pizza I planned to feature here. I attempted to make a rolled pizza (AKA stromboli), but I was in a hurry and kind of sort of forgot to add the cheese before rolling and baking. That was not a proud moment in my kitchen, but we’re all friends here so I’m telling you about it. To recover from this mistake, I sliced the finished product, sprinkled cheese on top of each slice, and baked them for a few minutes. It was still good, but not exactly what I had in mind. In the midst of all that, The Pants and I agreed that we would be just as happy to have regular pizza, so I didn’t make a round two for pretty pictures. If YOU want to make stromboli, hurry on over to this recipe at Lauren’s Latest. Not only does her version look outstanding, it’s one of the funniest recipes I’ve read in a while. Who doesn’t want to laugh when learning how to make a pizza roll? Tell Lauren “Hi” while you are there!
- Slow Cooker Asian Beef Rice Bowl – Since I was so chatty about the pizza, I am going to wrap this up: This slow cooker dish is very, very good. Enjoy!
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