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, Beer Can Chicken was served alongside an arugula salad and remade into two easy sandwiches. This week, a spinach mixture is stuffed into an easy Spanakopita and reused in cheesy Stuffed Chicken Breasts.
Here's the rest of the plan:
Grocery List based on servings for 2 w/ leftovers
Day 1 - Crispy Fish & Zucchini w/ Dill Yogurt Sauce *Makes leftover Dill Yogurt Sauce for Spanakopita and leftover Couscous for Dijon Chicken
Cook couscous according to package instructions. *Reserve half for use in day 3.
Preheat grill pan to medium-low and coat with cooking spray. Slice zucchini into rounds and toss with 1 tsp lemon zest, 1 tsp olive oil, salt and pepper.
Grill until zucchini is tender, but still crisp, about 5 minutes per side.
In a small bowl, mix 1/2 cup greek yogurt with 1/3 cup buttermilk, 3 tbsp chopped fresh dill, 1 small clove minced garlic, and 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Allow to chill in the fridge. *Reserve half for use in day 4.
Meanwhile, rinse fish filets and pat dry. Season both sides with salt and pepper. Press filets into flour to coat on both sides, then sprinkle each side with paprika.
In a large skillet, heat canola or peanut oil over medium-high heat. Add fish and fry until golden brown and crisp, about 3 minutes per side. Let drain on paper towels.
Serve, topped with a dollop of Greek yogurt sauce, alongside grilled zucchini and couscous.
Day 2 - Pasta w/ Anchovies, Chile, & Dill Breadcrumbs recipe adapted from bonappetit.com Mix together 1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs, 1/2 tbsp parmesan cheese, 2 tbsp chopped fresh dill, and 1/2 tsp lemon zest.
Cook 2 servings of pasta according to al dente package instructions. Reserve 1/2 cup water before draining completely.
Heat a skillet to medium-high heat and coat lightly with olive oil. Add 1/2 diced red onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until caramelized, about 10-15 minutes. Mix in 7 chopped anchovy filets and 2 cloves minced garlic, cooking until softened, about 3 minutes. Season with crushed red pepper to taste.
Add 1/4 cup of reserved cooking liquid to skillet and bring to a boil. Add pasta and another drizzle of oil. Toss until pasta is coated in sauce. Add breadcrumb mixture and toss until lightly toasted. Taste and season as needed.
Day 3 - Pan-Roasted Dijon Chicken w/ Couscous Uses leftover Couscous
In a baking dish or ziplock bag, toss 2 chicken breasts with ¼ cup lemon juice, 1 tbsp Dijon mustard, 2-3 tbsp olive oil, ½ tsp paprika, and salt and pepper to taste. Let marinate for 15 minutes in fridge.
Heat skillet to medium-high and coat with cooking spray or a bit of oil. Add chicken and juices to pan and let sit until a nice golden-brown crust forms, about 6-7 minutes. Flip and cook for another 6-7 minutes until browned and cooked through. Remove from pan and set aside.
Deglaze pan with 1/4 cup chicken stock and 1/4 cup white wine (or 1/2 cup chicken stock). Stir in 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard, lower heat, and allow sauce to reduce by half. Season to taste.
Meanwhile, reheat leftover couscous.
Drizzle pan sauce over chicken breasts and serve with a side of couscous.
Day 4 -Weeknight Spanakopita *Makes leftover Spinach for Stuffed Chicken and uses leftover Dill Yogurt Sauce
Thaw frozen spinach and use a towel and mesh strainer to squeeze out excess moisture.
Heat a large skillet over medium-high and coat lightly with olive oil. Add 1/4 minced red onion and cook until softened. Stir in 3 cloves minced garlic and cook for another minute. Add the drained spinach and 1 tbsp chopped fresh dill. Cook, stirring, for another 2 minutes and remove from heat. Season with salt, paprika, and pepper to taste. *Reserve 1/3 for use in day 5.
Once cooled, mix with crumbled feta and half of an egg.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees and brush the bottom of a 9-by-13 baking sheet with butter.
Unroll phyllo sheets and cover with a damp towel to keep from drying out. Remove one sheet and arrange onto a clean work surface with a long side nearest you (while working, keep the remaining sheets covered with a towel). Brush the sheet lightly with butter. Top with another sheet and brush with butter once more. Repeat one more time.
Using a sharp knife, cut the stack in half horizontally to form two long strips. Divide the spinach mixture between the two strips, placing a heaping mound at in the bottom left corner of each strip. Fold phyllo over filling, enclosing to form a large triangle. Continue folding upward, folding the strip over itself to maintain triangle shape (like folding up a flag). Repeat with second strip.
Place the triangles, seam side down, onto baking sheet and brush tops with butter. Bake 20-25 minutes until golden-brown and crisp.
Meanwhile, mix leftover yogurt dill sauce with more Greek yogurt to thicken.
Serve spanakopita hot with a side of Greek yogurt dip and 2 handfuls of mixed greens tossed with lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper.
Day 5 -Spinach & Gruyere Stuffed Chicken w/ Mixed Greens *Uses leftover Spinach
Butterfly chicken breasts, cover with plastic wrap, and pound using the back of a pan until evenly flattened.
Mix leftover spinach with shredded gruyere.
Place a mound of spinach mixture into the center each breast. Roll chicken over itself to form a long, thin log. Secure with toothpicks if needed. Set up a breading station with seasoned flour, whisked egg, and panko breadcrumbs tossed with parmesan cheese and paprika.
Dredge chicken pieces in flour, coat in egg, and press into breadcrumb mixture to adhere.
Heat a skillet over medium-high heat and coat with oil. Add chicken and cook, turning, until browned on all sides, about 12-15 minutes total. Remove from heat and cover to keep warm.
Remove excess grease from pan and add a pat of butter. When melted, add 1 clove minced garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds to 1 minute. Add in a splash of white wine or chicken stock and reduce by half. Remove from heat and squeeze in fresh lemon juice. Whisk to combine and season as needed.
Pour lemon butter sauce over chicken and serve with mixed greens tossed with chopped tomato, extra-virgin olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt and pepper.
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