Kittens, this week was an experiment in planning, slapping things together, and trying to maximize the amount of time I had to enjoy the people I love.
Cooking is wonderful, but not at the expense of friends.
Yes, the chicken took a day of marinating, but the rest of this received an hour of attention, tops. And if you’re in the mood to make a pizza, but don’t have the time to make a crust, just roll out to the store and buy some pre-made dough or a Boboli or something like that. You’ll still love the end result 11/10. I pinky swear.
Tuesday – Yogurt-Marinated Grilled Chicken with Corn on the Cob and Roasted Broccoli
Marcus went out-of-town on a brief bit of business Monday night, so I informed him that rather than expensing a dinner at the airport on the way home, I would have dinner ready to roast/grill/boil when he walked in the door.
My dirty little secret: If I have to get dinner started all on my own, then you had better believe that I’m going to make sure that the prep-work is easy and minimal.
Since this chicken was such a hit when we made it the first go-round, it seemed like a no-brainer for our meal’s centerpiece. Yes, it takes a bit of footwork the night before, and you need to source some garam masala. Instead of thinking, just do.
Wednesday – Pizza Night
We were having friends over for dinner on Wednesday night, and nothing screams cozy get-together like homemade pizzas on the patio over drinks.
Plus, if you’re hosting, pizzas are an ideal party food. You can make them with anything you have on-hand, and you can do most all of the footwork ahead of time. If you par-bake the crusts pre-arrival, then all you need to do when your guests arrive (or right before!) is top them and pop them in the oven for another 15 minutes, and voila!
Case-in-point: Even though I had known our guests were coming to dinner for a week or so, I had zero clue as to what we would be feeding them until Monday night. At which point, after doing a brief mental tally of the ingredients we had on-hand, I decided to go the pizza route with two decidedly different twists.
Just remember that when you’re actioning this sort of thing, other tasty toppings could include wilted greens (spinach, arugula), canned things (artichoke hearts, beans, olives) or pantry staples like potatoes or boiled pasta (with sauce, of course). The world is your oyster.
Thursday Night – Leftovers AKA The Truth Comes Out
I very rarely show Thursday nights because they’re leftover nights. Sometimes we’ll do paninis with whatever we have left in the fridge, and other times we’ll just eat what we’ve made throughout the week without any additional ceremony.
Tonight I knew I was going to go a different route.
The green beans and corn involved no effort whatsoever as far as preparation goes, and I’d be lying if I didn’t tell you that I microwaved the pizza to warm it up prior to popping an egg on top.
When served al fresco on a square plate, who could ask for anything more? ;)
What night is your “leftover” night?
What is your favorite combination of pizza toppings?
What is your go-to dish for serving guests when you’re pressed for time?