July 25, 2011

on the menu | simple weeknight meals from self magazine

Last week wasn’t my best cooking week. Sometimes, during the hustle and bustle of busy days and late nights, I am just a little uninspired to do even the most simple grocery shopping and instead rely on takeout and boring sandwiches to get through the week.

This week, though, after devouring a new issue of Self magazine, I’m ready to plot out a few cooking adventures (with just a couple nights off for a much-anticipated date and Friday night party with friends).

Monday: Pasta with Sausage and Red Grapes

pasta with sausage and red grapes shape magazine 6 sweet suppers

{Pasta is a staple in my kitchen — such a simple base for flavorful meals, such as this Pasta with Sausage and Red Grapes from Self magazine. Photo Courtesy Self magazine}

I’m excited to try this recipe (and two others) from Self magazine’s recent feature, “6 Sweet Suppers.” I love the story angle — simple dinners that incorporate fresh summer fruits into the main course — not just as a side dish or dessert. I can’t wait to experience the taste of juicy red grapes and savory sausage — I’ll be getting some fresh sausage from the local Italian grocer near my workplace.

Tuesday: Dinner at 715 in Lawrence, Kansas

715 restaurant lawrence kansas

{It's been a while since I've been to 715 — glad that's going to change on Tuesday!}

OK, so maybe I’m not cooking on Tuesday night, but I’m not passing up the opportunity to dine at my favorite restaurant in my old college town with my favorite person — the teacher man. From artisan pizzas to handmade pastas, 715 is always worth the drive to Lawrence.

Wednesday: Grilled Chicken and Peach Salad

grilled chicken and peach salad self magazine 6 sweet suppers

{This light, refreshing salad is perfect for cooling us down at dinner after all the record-breaking heat we've been having in the Midwest. Photo Courtesy Self magazine}

I have been finding every way possible to weave peaches into my diet this summer. Peaches are a staple summer fruit — a good rival to watermelon, which is just a tad too messy to deal with on a weekly basis. I’ll be stocking up on peaches again during my next food run at the farmer’s market.

Thursday: Fish Tacos with Strawberry Salsa

fish tacos with strawberry salsa self magazine 6 sweet suppers

{Dress up your fish tacos with a sweet spread of strawberry salsa — yes please! Photo Courtesy Self magazine}

The teacher man and I make some sort of Spanish fair at least once a week — tacos, fajitas, salsa — you name it. It’s simple and satisfying. When I saw this recipe for Fish Tacos with Strawberry Salsa, I knew we had to get it into our regular rotation. Dressing up a simple white fish taco (cod, halibut or tilapia) is so simple with the right spices — and fruits! I’m looking forward to chopping up my new container of bright-red strawberries and heating it up a bit with fresh jalapenos to make this spicy strawberry salsa.

Friday: Blues, Beer and BBQ in Kansas City

smoked brisket

{Melt-in-your-mouth brisket awaits at the end of the week! Photo By VirtualEm/Courtesy Flickr}

Barbecue is just one of those things I’ll leave to the pros in Kansas City. The teacher man and I will be joining friends and coworkers for a night out to celebrate a recent destination wedding, and what better way to say congrats to the newlyweds at home than with a real KC barbecue, blues and beer?

What’s on your menu this week?

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