Archives for posts with tag: one-dish

This recipe is originally from Gourmet magazine and I love that it is a) a one-dish meal and b) indulgent but moderately healthy. You know I love kielbasa, but with this recipe I don’t feel guilty eating it! Note: I had some chicken stock kicking around the fridge so I used that instead of water with the chard.


3/4 pound Swiss chard (preferably red; from 1 bunch)
1/2 pound kielbasa, quartered lengthwise, then cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick pieces
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/2 cup water
1/4 teaspoon dried hot red-pepper flakes
3/4 pound penne
1/2 cup Parmesan, plus additional for serving

Cut out center ribs and stems from chard, then thoroughly wash, along with leaves, in several changes of cold water. Cut ribs and stems crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick pieces and coarsely chop leaves.

Cook kielbasa in oil in a 5-quart heavy pot over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer with a slotted spoon to a bowl. Cook chard ribs and stems with salt in fat remaining in pot over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, 3 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add chard leaves, water, and red-pepper flakes and simmer, partially covered, until chard stems are tender, about 5 minutes. Remove lid and stir in kielbasa.

Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente, then reserve 1/2 cup pasta-cooking water and drain pasta in a colander. Add pasta to chard mixture with cheese and salt to taste and toss until combined well. Thin with some of reserved pasta water if necessary.


Well this has been a crazy weather week! We started off with an absolutely beautiful weekend in NYC where it would not have been crazy at all to wear shorts and then bam – 30 degrees slams you in the face! Some of you probably even got some snow. Sorry about that. With Passover and Easter so late this year I thought we were guaranteed a holiday meal with local asparagus, but it looks like we’ll have to wait a few more weeks for those beautiful stalks to hit the farmers markets. Fortunately the first ramps of the season have been spotted and it is only a matter of time before everything else starts rolling in.  I can’t wait! I’ll be the first to say that I am pretty sick of what I’ve been cooking lately and I am ready to prepare and share with you some new recipes. In the meanwhile here’s a new meal plan with two new recipes and two repeats.

Eliza enjoying the sun at Brooklyn Bridge Park

Eliza enjoying the sun at Brooklyn Bridge Park

Meal #1: Chicken Fajitas + Black Bean and Corn Salad
Meal #2: Brussels Sprouts and Pork (or Beef) Stir Fry + Rice
Meal #3: Penne with Swiss Chard and Kielbasa
Meal #4: Fennel and Garlic Shrimp + French Bread

Your grocery list, excluding the usual pantry items:

limes – 2
red bell pepper – 1
yellow or orange bell pepper – 1
onion – 1
scallions – 1 bunch
carrots – 2
jalapeño – 1
grape or cherry tomatoes – 1 pint
Swiss chard (preferably red) – 1 large bunch
fennel – 2 bulbs
Brussels sprouts – 1 lb.
parsley – 1 bunch
ginger – 1 small piece
can of black beans – 1
can (or bag) of corn – 1
French bread
soy sauce (if you don’t already have it)
chili powder (if you don’t already have it)
ground cumin (if you don’t already have it)
crushed red pepper flakes (if you don’t already have it)
parmesan (if you don’t already have it)
oyster sauce (if you don’t already have it)
rice vinegar (if you don’t already have it)
skinless, boneless chicken breasts – 1 lb.
kielbasa – 1/2 lb.
shrimp – 2 lb.
skirt steak – 1/2 lb.
Pernod (optional)

This week kicked off with two celebrations – Eliza’s 2nd birthday and St. Patrick’s Day. For Eliza’s birthday we hosted a small family party and kept it simple by ordering pizza, but we did have a homemade birthday cake. Last year, I made the same chocolate cake with vanilla icing and decorated it in a festive confetti style.
Elizas 1st bday cake_web
But, this year, since Eliza’s interests are much clearer, I indulged her love of Elmo and all things Sesame Street with this cake. I was pretty proud of my work!
Elizas 2nd bday cake_Web

Since St Patrick’s Day was the next day, and fell on a Monday, I didn’t have it in me to make a stew or shepherd’s pie (I am not a corned beef and cabbage girl). So instead, I opted for something a little easier, but still in line with the holiday – Martha’s recipe for salmon, red cabbage and potatoes. I figured it had cabbage and potatoes, and the Irish love salmon so it worked. Plus, Patrick and I each had a Guinness with dinner – and there is nothing more Irish than that!

Meal #1: Salmon, Red Cabbage and Potatoes
Meal #2: Butternut Squash Salad with Pine Nuts, Pecorino and Balsamic Vinegar
Meal #3: Skirt Steak with Winter Salad
Meal #4: Penne with Brussels Sprouts, Chile and Pancetta

Your grocery list, excluding the usual pantry items:

lemon – 2
red cabbage – 1 small head
red potatoes – 4-6 depending on size
Brussels sprouts – 1 lb.
butternut squash – 1 small (about 2 lb.)
fennel – 1 bulb
radicchio – 1 head
arugula – 1 bunch or bag
rosemary – 1 bunch
sundried tomatoes
pecorino cheese – ¼ lb.
kalamata olives (if you don’t already have them)
grainy mustard (if you don’t already have it)
ground coriander (if you don’t already have it)
ground cinnamon (if you don’t already have it)
ground cumin (if you don’t already have it)
crushed red pepper flakes (if you don’t already have it)
pine nuts (if you don’t already have it)
Parmesan cheese (if you don’t already have it)
penne – 1 box
pancetta – 6 oz.
salmon filet – 1 ½ lb. skinless
skirt steak – 1 ½ lb.

Salmon, Red Cabbage and New Potatoes
IMG_0982 Web

I LOVE this recipe. I kept making salmon with a lemony, fennel salad, and it was delicious, but I was getting bored. This is so easy and interesting. One warning: the potatoes take longer than the recipe says. I recommend roasting the potatoes for 15-20 minutes by themselves,  then add the cabbage and roast for another 15-20 minutes before adding the salmon.

This recipe comes from Mario Batali’s cookbook Molto Italiano. Does anybody remember Mario’s old show on the Food Network (back when the network was actually about cooking)? I have many cooking “mentors” from television and Mario is one of them. I learned so much about the regional nature of Italian cooking from him; and I grew up on the south shore of  Long Island where it seemed like everyone, but me, was Italian. Over the years, he has opened a lot of restaurants, which usually makes me leery, but man, are his good. To speed this recipe up I tweaked the ingredients a bit and skipped the brining process, which I’m sure makes the chops amazing, but it isn’t necessary.

4 bone-in pork chops
salt and pepper
3 TB. olive oil
3 peppers (1 each red, green and yellow), cored, seeded and cut into thin strips*
1 large red onion, sliced*
¼ cup black olives, pitted and chopped*
1 TB. red pepper flakes
1 TB. capers
1 cup dry white wine

* ingredients that can be prepped several days ahead.

Season pork chop with salt and pepper. In a large saute pan, heat the olive oil over high heat until smoking. Add chops to the pan (don’t crowd the pan – you can do 2 chops at a time if you need to) and cook until dark golden brown on the first side, about 7 minutes. Turn over and cook until browned on the second side, about 4 minutes, then transfer to a plate.

Add the peppers, onion, olives, red pepper flakes, and capers and stir with a wooden spoon to loosen the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Add the wine and bring to a boil. Lower the heat, place the chops in the pepper mixture, and simmer for 10 minutes (the pork should be cooked to 135 degrees F).

Season the sauce with salt and pepper to taste and serve.

Green Saladlettuce

A basic salad of your favorite greens will nicely complement the pork chops.


Okay, so I didn’t exactly just serve one dish per meal this week, but I could have! Each of the main dishes offer a combo of proteins with veggies and/or carbs. I love these types of dishes; especially for weeknights. I didn’t grow up eating casseroles, so you won’t see too many on this site, but I do like a dish that can serve as not only the main event, but the only event.

(Meals should feed four adults and take about 30-40 minutes to prepare, or the time it takes Patrick to give Eliza a bottle and put her to bed.)


Meal #1: Chicken Thighs, Fennel and Artichoke Fricassee with Noodles
Meal #2: Pork Chops with Peppers and Capers, Green Salad
Meal #3: Salmon, Red Cabbage and New Potatoes
Meals #4: Chicken and Vegetable Fried Rice

Your Grocery List, excluding the usual pantry items:

bell peppers – 1 each green and yellow, 3 red
large red onion – 2
ginger – 1 piece (you can freeze or refrigerate the rest)
zucchini – 2
bunch of scallions
small red cabbage – 1
new potatoes – 10
lemon – 1
fennel bulb – 1
lettuce, or whatever greens you like for a salad – 1 head or bag
parsley – 1 small bunch
artichoke hearts – 1 can
chicken stock – 1 can (you’ll need 1 cup, but you can always freeze the rest in an ice cube tray and use later)
water chestnuts – 1 can
horseradish – 1 bottle (it’ll keep, or you could make bloody marys!)
egg noodles – 1 bag
bone-in chicken thighs – 8
bone-in pork chops – 4
skinless salmon fillet – 1 1/2 lb.
chicken cutlets – ¾ lb.
dry white wine


Chicken, Fennel and Artichoke Fricassee

Absolutely delicious. I made this recipe with a few chicken thighs instead of a whole chicken (you’ll see that in the meal plan’s grocery list). Try it either way, or even use bone-in chicken breasts instead, if you prefer white meat. Also, add a bit of salt and pepper at the end to taste.


Nothing fancy here, just old-fashioned egg noodles that remind you of being a kid. They’re nice for soaking up the juices of the fricassee.

Boil salted water and follow directions on the bag.


This dish is a great way to use up leftover rice from another night’s dinner or take-out, because the rice should be at least a day old or it will be too sticky for the recipe. You can use whatever protein (pork, beef, tofu) you prefer or skip it all together and just use vegetables – also throw whatever veggies you like in here. Here’s what I did.

purple onions

2 TB. vegetable oil
1 garlic, minced
1 TB. ginger, minced
¾ lb. chicken cutlets, cut into strips
2 zucchini, chopped*
2 red pepper, chopped*
6 scallions, chopped (greens reserved)
1 can water chestnuts, sliced
2 cups rice
2 eggs, beaten
soy sauce

* ingredients that can be prepped several days ahead.

Heat oil in a large saute pan or wok until very hot. Add garlic and ginger and stir quickly until they smell delicious, between 30 sec – 1 min. Add chicken and stir until no longer pink. Add zucchini, pepper and scallions and continue to stir for 1-2 minutes. Add water chestnuts, rice, and eggs and continue to stir. Once blended add soy sauce to taste, stir and serve.