I love cooking for my fiancé and me, but most of the time, cooking for two proves to be difficult. If I don't make a plan, I end up running around in circles at the grocery store and wasting half the ingredient's I've bought (and I hate wasting food). Enter What's Cooking This Week - my weekly meal plan and grocery guide. This way, I can make the most of my ingredients and my leftovers.
Last week, an easy mango salsa topped both Chicken Milanese and Flank Steak Tacos. This week, a chilled Tomato Soup is topped with grilled shrimp to make a Hearty Bruschetta.
Here's the rest of the plan:
Grocery List based on servings for 2 w/ leftovers
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Day 1 - Rustic Gazpacho w/ Homemade Croutons Gazpacho recipe adapted from Food & Wine *Makes leftover Gazpacho for Shrimp Bruschetta & Spinach Ravioli
Cut vine-ripened tomatoes, 1/2 cucumber, 1 shallot, and 1 red bell pepper into large chunks. Add to a blender or food processor along with 2 cloves smashed garlic, 1 cup water, 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, 2 tbsp sherry vinegar, and 1 tbsp fresh basil. Pulse until coarsely pureed. Season with salt and pepper to taste and set in fridge for 1-2 hours to let flavors meld (can be made the night before). *Reserve half for use in days 2 and 3.
When ready to serve, prepare croutons using up to 1/4 of the loaf of bread.
Serve soup chilled topped with a chiffonade of fresh basil leaves and crispy croutons. Add a dash of hot sauce for heat.
Day 2 - Shrimp Bruschetta w/ Mixed Greens *Uses leftover Gazpacho
Heat a grill pan to medium-high heat. Toss shrimp with olive oil, lemon zest, salt and crushed red pepper. Add to pan and cook, flipping once, until just pink and cooked through, about 1-2 minutes per side. Remove and set aside.
Slice 4 pieces of ciabatta on a bias. Brush with olive oil and place on the same heated grill pan. Cook, flipping once, until deep golden brown and crisp on both sides. *Reserve enough bread for two sandwiches.
Top each slice with a heaping spoonful of gazpacho, chopped fresh basil, and sliced shrimp. Serve with mixed greens, sliced red onion, and cucumber tossed with lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper.
Day 3 - Spinach Ravioli in Tomato Basil Sauce *Uses leftover gazpacho
Puree leftover gazpacho until smooth. Heat a can of tomato sauce in a saucepan over medium-high heat and stir in gazpacho. Add a pinch or two of sugar and crushed red pepper. Stir in chopped basil and lower heat. Simmer until flavors have melded and mixture is heated through. Taste and season with salt and crushed red pepper as needed.
Meanwhile, cook ravioli according to package instructions. Top with tomato sauce and parmesan cheese.
Day 4 - Chicken w/ Herbed Goat Cheese & Grilled Chicken recipe adapted from Ina Garten *Makes leftover Grilled Zucchini
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Loosen skin from chicken breasts and add a heaping spoonful of goat cheese under the skin of each breast, using your fingers to spread. Stuff in a fresh basil leaf and place skin back in place. Rub each breast with olive oil and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Place on baking sheet and bake 35-45 minutes until golden browned and cooked through.
Meanwhile, use a peeler to slice zucchini into wide ribbons. Toss zucchini with olive oil, salt and pepper. Place slices on a grill pan heated to high for a minute or two to char. Finish with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice and parmesan. *Reserve half for use in day 4.
Day 5 - Zucchini, Red Pepper, & Goat Cheese Panini *Uses leftover Grilled Zucchini
Cut ciabatta into two sandwiches and slice open. Fill with leftover zucchini, roasted red peppers, sliced red onion, and goat cheese. Close and brush tops and bottoms with a mix of olive oil and butter.
Place on grill pan heated to medium-high heat and grill, pressing down, until golden brown and crisp on both sides.
Slice and serve with any extra mixed greens tossed with oil and vinegar.