View Full Version : Dinner Ideas

06-07-2008, 10:09 AM
With all that has been going on lately I haven't been in the mood to cook at all and when I do I make huge portion and feed the hubby the same thing for 3 days. Normally I love to cook .... but it is hot, humid, and I am out of ideas. Any suggestions for a simple summer dinner that doesn't take too much prep or heat up the house? I'm not really in the mood for meat lately so maybe something vegeatrian...I love beans.

06-07-2008, 10:33 AM
One of my husbands favorite meat-free dishes that I make is spinach pesto linguine with tomato checca (sp?) on top. That's like tomatoes in oil and vinegar.

And it's good cold the next day.

PM me if you want the recipe.

06-07-2008, 10:41 AM
I bet a lot of us would love the recipe. It sounds great already. I'm going to PM you, but you might want to post it here too.

06-07-2008, 10:47 AM
Do you like Indian food? One of my favorite dish to make is a simple chick pea curry. You fry 1-2 onions, garlic, fresh ginger, hot pepper and turmeric, you add a can of tomatoes or 2 fresh tomatoes, grounded coriander, let it cook a minute or two, then you add 2 cans of chick peas. You let that cook covered for 10 minutes. You add 1 cup of the liquid coming from the chick pea cans, and you let it simmer, uncovered, for another 10 minutes. At the end, you add more liquid if you want, 2 table spoons of lemon juice and about a table spoon of garam masala. Fresh coriander leaves on top, serve it on rice, and it's done! :thumbsup:

06-07-2008, 10:53 AM
CD - I PM'd you !!
Iza - your recipe sounds great and I will save it for the hubby. I am a wimp when it comes to spice. Seriously, the mild salsa at Chipotle is too much for me : ) I do like Indian Nan and cucumber dip though ;) I can always make this for the hubby as he thinks the hotter the better.

06-07-2008, 10:56 AM
Spinach Pesto:

puree for the pesto:
1 cup of spinach leaves, packed
1/2 cup basil (if not, use about a TB of dried and add more spinach)
1/4 cup olive oil
2 T. lemon juice
1 clove of garlic
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes (or more if you like it spicy)
optional: a 1/4 cup or so of parmesan/ if you add the cheese, you may want to add less salt

1/2 lb. pasta (linguine or fettuccine)

Combine for garnish:
1 cup roma tomatoes seeded and diced
1 T. white wine vinegar
1 T. olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Toss together:
drained pasta
spinach pesto (if the pesto seems thick, add a little of the pasta water to it before you drain the pasta)

Serve with:
tomato garnish

Hope y'all like it!

06-07-2008, 02:43 PM
A big chef salad!

Chili dogs and chips.

Manwiches and chips.

And in the crockpot:

A roast and potatoes (DH loves this with cabbage tossed in on top of the roast for a cooked green).
Smoked ham and speckled butter beans (large limas are a distant second).
Smoked ham and greens.
Soup with smoked ham as the meat, or with no meat at all.

06-07-2008, 04:21 PM
With all that has been going on lately I haven't been in the mood to cook at all and when I do I make huge portion and feed the hubby the same thing for 3 days. Normally I love to cook .... but it is hot, humid, and I am out of ideas. Any suggestions for a simple summer dinner that doesn't take too much prep or heat up the house? I'm not really in the mood for meat lately so maybe something vegeatrian...I love beans.

You sound like me. :teehee: DH is retired, but I don't get to retire from cooking unless I am completely incapacitated or am dead. :grrr: I try to cook as little as possible. Red skin potatoes are one of my favorite veggies. They are great without peeling. Add a ham steak and salad or some other veggie and maybe some rolls - you have simple meal. Add dessert if you must. How about ice cream?

Tonite we are having left over potato salad that I made yesterday plus lettuce, tomato, cucumber, lettuce and green onion salad freshly made along with some leftover chicken breast tenderloins from last nite. I'm thinking of cooking a little bacon to break up on the salad. We have some bananas and grapes for dessert.

Tommorrow? Who knows? Whatever I can throw together in about a half hour.

06-07-2008, 08:13 PM
My husband is big on tacos. I use the large flour tortillas warmed in a frying pan with some pam. Lots of shredded lettuce, onions, diced fresh tomato, sliced olives, shredded cheese, jalapeno peppers, and a little ground beef cooked or you could substitute refried beans. I just put everything out on the counter in separate bowls and we each make our own and top with some taco sauce or you could use salsa.

06-07-2008, 09:27 PM
HaHa - tacos, fajitas, and burritos are among my hubby's favorites and as such I cannot make them correctly. When it's time for either of those he does the cooking !!
For tonight I ended up taking leftover chicken from the chicken and rice I've fed him the last 2 nights - put the chicken in some spaghetti sauce with a can of diced tomatoes and bam it was dinner.
That Spinach pesto is on my list for this week - tomorrow is homemade pizza night.
Any recipes for a cold vegetarian salad - lots of beans. I do a 4 bean salad, but that's not a meal. I make pasta and potato salad all the time....just need something new.
THanks for all the suggestions.

06-07-2008, 09:55 PM
This is from Jane Brody's "Good Food Book." Shockingly, our kids have always liked it as other foods have gone in and out of fashion. It's vegetarian, the ingredients are cheap, and it's easy to cook. Here's how I make it.. there may be differences with the original! You do have to run the stove, but it doesn't take that long and it's not as horrible as baking something.

Start boiling a pot of water for some pasta.

While it's boiling, chop up about 2 cups of onions and a couple cloves of garlic. (Pressing the garlic is fine if you don't feel like chopping it.) Saute them in 2 tbsp of olive oil. (The pan needs to be big enough to hold the completed sauce--a regular frying pan is probably just a little too small.)

When they're cooked through, throw in 1 can (~14oz) of diced tomates, 1 can (~14oz) of chick peas straight out of the can, and a 2nd can of chick peas that you've ground up in a food processor or blender. Note: don't drain the tomatoes and chick peas.. their liquid goes in as part of the sauce. Optional: 1 tsp of Rosemary. It adds a bit, but if you don't have it or if you have kids who give the evil eye to "green things", it does fine without.

Stir everything together well and heat it till it starts boiling, stirring often enough to keep it from sticking. Turn down the heat and simmer for 15 mins. and serve on the pasta.

Put the pasta in to cook so it'll be ready roughly at the same time as the sauce. Serve with pepper and parmesan cheese to taste. It's good with a salad.

06-07-2008, 10:10 PM
This is one of my family's favorite summertime meals. It takes less than 20 min including boiling the the water. I unvented the sauce recipe trying to mimic what I had tasted while in Italy

Tortellini w/ tomato basil sauce
1Tbs(or so) olive oil
2-3 cloves garlic minced
1 large (28oz) can diced tomatoes( for a chunky sauce for smoother crushed tomatoes work well)
1 tbs sugar( I've switched to Splenda)
Fresh basil -torn or cut I really don't use a set amount I grow basil all summer so I pretty much use what I can get without killing the plant. My SIL uses a whole plastic container from the grocery store.

In a large sauce pan briefly preheat oil. Add the garlic stir to infuse the oil. When you can really smell the garlic add the tomatoes and sugar. Cook until slightly thickened over med high heat. Turn off heat and stir in basil.
Stir in the cooked tortellini and serve. I use the tortellini or tortelloni found in the fridge section I think it is Bertolli brand. Cook according to package directions.
The sauce is also great with a little grilled chicken over pasta.

06-08-2008, 12:06 AM
Oh man, I got this recipe from my father in law that is delicious! Barely any cooking involved, it's called Pickled Mostaccioli. I also love to make my Pasta Salad in the summer 'cause it's a good cold food. If you want any of the recipes just PM me!

06-08-2008, 01:50 PM
here's one of my family's favorites (borrowed from "Cheap. Fast. Good!" cookbook-AWESOME book, btw, highly recommended!)

BBQ Chicken and Black Bean Burritos

1-2 tb cooking oil
1 lb boneless,skinless chicken, breasts or thighs, thawed
1 chopped onion (medium)
1 clove garlic, minced
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1/3 c favorite BBQ sauce (I use KC's Masterpiece, hickory)
1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese ( i usually use Colby Jack)
flour tortillas
sour cream if desired

1. Peel and dice onion and set aside.

2. Heat oil in a 12" skillet over medium heat. While the oil is heating, cut the chicken into bite size pieces (easier if chicken is still partially frozen, btw!), adding to the skillet as you cut. When all chicken has been added, cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally.

3. Add onion and garlic, stirring frequently and cooking 3-4 more minutes, until chicken is no longer pink in the center.

4. Mix in beans and bbq sauce, coating chicken. Sprinkle cheese over mixture evenly and allow to melt, 2-3 minutes more.

5. Serve in warmed tortillas with sour cream if desired.

Hope you like it! The book I referred to has LOTS of really good recipes-and almost all of the ones I've tried have been a big hit and very easy.

06-09-2008, 08:44 AM
We eat a lot of noodles. ONe thing we've discovered that we like is to cook the noodles and toss them with Italian drasseing to eat the next night. YUM!