week of dinners, july 11 - 17

after my promise in january to post, from time to time, our menus of weekly dinners, i have failed you all by not posting any!  i can't use the excuse that i haven't been creating a weekly dinner menu and we are still cooking almost every night, so i am back at it and re-promising menus!  as a reminder, these posts will often include recipes and pictures and my hope is that they will always inspire fresh, seasonal, and thoughtful cooking by you! weekly summer dinner menu for july 11 - 17:

casual saturday night:

grilled applegate farms hot dogs (no nitrites or nitrates, which is good for my pregnant belly!) with toasted hot dog buns, tomato and mozzarella salad with fresh basil, a drizzle of good olive oil, and a sprinkle of sea salt, vegetarian baked beans 


sunday supper:

pesto pasta with summer vegetables:

toss a bunch of fresh basil leaves (use a whole package if you are buying it at the grocery), a large handful of spinach leaves, about a 1/2 cup of grated parmesan cheese1 clove of garlic, a large handful of walnuts, and about 3 tablespoons of  olive oil into a blender or food processor.  while blending take note of the consistency and drizzle in more olive oil until the consistency is smooth.  add salt and pepper to taste.    after the pesto is made, start boiling a pot of water and cook your pasta (i use a whole package because the leftovers are delicious!) according to your preference.  in the meantime, place your choice of summer vegetables (zucchini, yellow squash) in a skillet and lightly saute with just a touch of olive oil and salt.  when the pasta is ready, drain and place in a large bowl.  toss the vegetables and pesto with the pasta, toss in freshly chopped tomatoes (i like using cherry tomatoes or sun gold tomatoes because of their size and color), and enjoy! 


welcome to monday:

mixed greens with baby lettuce and cherry tomatoes, grilled pizza:

roll out pizza dough (we use trader joe's pizza dough and it is yummy! and the perfect size for making one pizza) onto a pizza stone that is lightly coated with cornmeal.  spread your choice of pizza sauce (again, we use trader joe's brand, which we both love and one container (found conveniently next to the dough) is enough for two pizzas) onto the dough.  next, cover the sauce with your choice of toppings- two of our favorite creations, thus far, are pepperoni, feta cheese, mozzarella cheese, fresh basil, and kalamata olives  AND  fresh slices of buffalo mozzarella, fresh oregano, and fresh basil...YUM!   cook over preheated grill for about 15 minutes- continue to check on it often because once the cheese starts to brown, it cooks quickly. 


tuesday dinner:

shitake mushroom risotto, roasted broccoli with shrimp:

preheat the oven to 425 degrees.  in a large bowl, toss about 2 pounds of freshly cut broccoli with 2 tablespoons olive oil, 1 teaspoon cumin, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and 1/8 teaspoon chili powder.  in a separate bowl, combine 1 pound of shelled shrimp with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, 1/4 teaspoon lemon zest, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.  spread broccoli in a single layer on a baking sheet.  roast for 10 minutes.  add shrimp to the same baking sheet and toss with the broccoli.  roast, tossing once halfway through, until shrimp are just opaque and broccoli is tender and golden around the edges, about 10 minutes.  serve with lemon wedges.


wednesday dinner:

 pasta salad with chickpeas, fresh basil, garlic, capers, kalamata olives, cherry tomatoes, and lots of parmesan cheese


 quick thursday dinner:

tossed green salad, meatball subs (i use the turkey meatballs from trader joe's...saves on prep time and they are delish!)


friday dinner at the ballpark:

we are going to the braves game and are so lucky that they allow you to carry food into the game with you...we are packing leftover pasta salad to bring with us along with freshly baked cookies


enjoy your weekend and happy cooking!