I get it, it’s much easier to call for delivery than it is to slave over a hot stove. But there’s a special satisfaction you get from preparing a meal from scratch. Whip up any of these quick dishes for your guests or even dinner for yourself.
1. Pasta Primavera
Instead of cracking open a jar of prepared sauce, create a homemade healthy pasta dish. Since there is an abundance of fresh spring veggies, it’s the perfect time of year for this dish. Add shrimp, chicken or grilled steak for a heartier dish.
Recipe from Giada De Laurentiis
3 carrots, peeled and cut into thin strips
2 medium zucchini or 1 large zucchini, cut into thin strips
2 yellow squash, cut into thin strips
1 onion, thinly sliced
1 yellow bell pepper, cut into thin strips
1 red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
1/4 cup olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon dried Italian herbs or herbes de Provence
1 pound farfalle (bowtie pasta)
15 cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. On a large heavy baking sheet, toss all of the vegetables with the oil, salt, pepper, and dried herbs to coat. Transfer half of the vegetable mixture to another heavy large baking sheet and arrange evenly over the baking sheets. Bake until the carrots are tender and the vegetables begin to brown, stirring after the first 10 minutes, about 20 minutes total.
Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente, tender but still firm to the bite, about 8 minutes. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid.
Toss the pasta with the vegetable mixtures in a large bowl to combine. Toss with the cherry tomatoes and enough reserved cooking liquid to moisten. Season the pasta with salt and pepper, to taste. Sprinkle with the Parmesan and serve immediately.
Remix boring scrambled eggs and whip up an easy frittata. You can adapt this dish with bacon, breakfast sausages and different cheeses.
Recipe courtesy of Alton Brown
6 eggs, beaten
1-ounce Parmesan, grated
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon butter
1/2 cup chopped roasted asparagus
1/2 cup chopped country ham
1 tablespoon chopped parsley leaves
Preheat oven to broil setting. In medium sized bowl, blend together eggs, Parmesan, pepper, and salt with a fork. Heat 12-inch non-stick, oven safe saute pan over medium high heat. Add butter to pan and melt. Add asparagus and ham to pan and saute for 2 to 3 minutes. Pour egg mixture into pan and stir with rubber spatula. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes or until the egg mixture has set on the bottom and begins to set up on top. Sprinkle with parsley.
Place pan into oven and broil for 3 to 4 minutes, until lightly browned and fluffy. Remove from pan and cut into 6 servings. Serve immediately.
Give the impression that you’ve been cooking chili all day with the help of a crockpot. Chili is easy to customize to your taste buds, swap out the ground beef for ground turkey and toss it all in the crockpot for a fuss-free meal.
Recipe courtesy of Jimmy Fallon
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 1/2 pounds ground chuck beef, ground for chili
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
1 large white onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 habanero chile, seeded and very finely chopped
1/4 cup chile powder
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 (28-ounce) cans whole tomatoes, coarsely chopped with their juices
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro, plus more for serving
1 (12-ounce) bottle amber beer
2 (15-ounce) cans kidney beans, drained and rinsed
Tortilla chips, for serving
Shredded cheddar cheese, for serving
Chopped tomatoes, for serving
Sour cream, for serving
Lime wedges, for serving
In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium-high heat. Working in batches if necessary, add beef and cook until no longer pink (about 3 minutes). Season with salt and pepper; drain in a colander, discarding fat, and set aside.
Add remaining tablespoon olive oil to skillet and reduce heat to medium. Add onions, garlic, and habanero; season with salt. Cook until translucent, about 5 minutes.
In a 6-quart crockpot, combine beef, onion mixture, chile powder, oregano, cumin, and cayenne pepper; stir to combine. Add tomatoes, cilantro, and beer; cover and cook on high, stirring occasionally, for 5 hours.
Add kidney beans and season with salt and pepper. Continue to cook, uncovered, until thickened, about 30 minutes. Garnish with cilantro and serve with desired toppings.
4 (5 ounces each) salmon fillets
2 teaspoons olive oil plus 2 tablespoons
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 tomatoes, chopped, or 1 (14-ounce) can chopped tomatoes, drained
2 chopped shallots
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried thyme
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Sprinkle salmon with 2 teaspoons olive oil, salt, and pepper. Stir the tomatoes, shallots, 2 tablespoons of oil, lemon juice, oregano, thyme, salt and pepper in a medium bowl to blend. Place a salmon fillet, oiled side down, atop a sheet of foil. Wrap the ends of the foil to form a spiral shape. Spoon the tomato mixture over the salmon. Fold the sides of the foil over the fish and tomato mixture, covering completely; seal the packets closed. Place the foil packet on a heavy large baking sheet. Repeat until all of the salmon have been individually wrapped in foil and placed on the baking sheet. Bake until the salmon is just cooked through, about 25 minutes. Using a large metal spatula, transfer the foil packets to plates and serve.
6 McIntosh apples, peeled and diced into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 lemon, juiced
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground or freshly grated nutmeg
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/2 cup flour or fine graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 stick butter
1 pint vanilla ice cream