Grocery Guide

What's Cooking This Week? Vodka Sauce, Spinach Salad & More

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 ingredients 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, I made a basil pesto for a Caprese Baguette and used the leftover for Pesto Tortellini. This week, I'll be making a homemade Honey-Dijon Dressing for Dijon Potatoes and A Grilled Chicken & Spinach Salad.

Here's the rest of the plan:

  • Grilled Salmon w/ Dijon Potato Salad
  • Penne Vodka w/ Spinach Salad
  • Grilled Hot Dogs w/ Sweet & Smokey Onion Topping
  • Grilled Chicken Salad w/ Homemade Honey Dijon
  • Chicken Vodka Flatbread

    Pantry Items

    • Olive oil (regular and extra-virgin)
    • Red wine vinegar
    • White wine vinegar
    • Balsamic vinegar
    • Cream (heavy or light)
    • Parmesan cheese
    • Ketchup
    • Dijon mustard
    • Honey
    • Brown sugar
    • Cayenne Pepper
    • Paprika
    • Crushed red pepper
    • Salt
    • Pepper

    Grocery List
    Based on servings for two with leftovers

    • 2 6-oz filets of salmon (or 1 12-oz filet), skin on
    • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken tenders
    • 2-4 hot dogs (+buns)
    • 2-3 oz extra sharp cheddar
    • 4 oz fresh mozzarella
    • 1 lb small red skin potatoes
    • 1 lemon
    • 1 yellow onion
    • 1 red onion
    • 2-3 ribs celery
    • 1 package baby spinach
    • 1 bunch fresh basil
    • 3 plum tomatoes
    • 1 head garlic
    • 1 28-oz can crushed tomatoes
    • 1 large or 2 individual flatbreads
    • 4 oz vodka

    Day 1: Grilled Salmon w/ Dijon Potato Salad
    Makes leftover Honey Dijon Dressing for Chicken & Spinach Salad and Dijon Potatoes for side with Hot Dogs

    Scrub potatoes, cut into quarters and place in a pot of cold water. Add salt and bring to a boil, cooking until tender, about 10 to 15 minutes. Drain and set aside.

    Meanwhile, whisk together ¼ cup Dijon mustard, ¼ cup honey and 2 tbsp white wine vinegar. Whisk in 1/3 cup olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste.
    *Reserve half for use in day 4.

    Break up boiled potatoes into large chunks and toss with 2 to 3 ribs chopped celery, ½ chopped red onion, chopped fresh basil, and Dijon dressing. Taste and season as needed.
    *Refrigerate half for use in day 3.

    Heat grill or grill pan to medium-high.

    Brush salmon with oil and season with salt and pepper. Place on grill, skin side down, and grill until golden brown and slightly charred, about 3 minutes. Flip and cook to desired doneness, about another 2-3 minutes.

    Serve salmon with wedge of lemon and Dijon potato salad.

    Day 2: Penne Vodka w/ Spinach Salad
    Makes leftover Tomato Cream Sauce for use in Chicken Vodka Pizza

    Heat a skillet over medium-high heat and coat with olive oil. Add ½ chopped yellow onion, 4 to 5 cloves minced garlic, salt and crushed red pepper. Cook until softened, about 5 to 10 minutes. Stir in vodka and cook for another minute. Add crushed tomatoes. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in 1/2 cup cream and chopped fresh basil. Taste and season as needed.
    *Reserve half the sauce for use in day 5.

    Meanwhile, cook two portions of penne according to package instructions. Sprinkle drained pasta with parmesan and toss with vodka sauce.

    Mix 1/3 package of spinach leaves with 1 chopped tomato, ¼ thinly sliced red onion, balsamic vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper.

    Serve penne hot with spinach salad.

    Day 3: Grilled Hot Dogs w/ Sweet & Smokey Onion Topping
    Uses leftover Dijon Potato Salad

    Heat skillet over medium-high heat and coat with oil. Add ½ chopped onion and cook until softened. Mix in 2 tbsp ketchup, 2 tbsp red wine vinegar, 1 tsp brown sugar and ½ cup water. Add a pinch of cayenne and paprika and simmer until thick.

    Grill hot dogs and buns. Top with onion mixture and serve with leftover potato salad.

    Day 4: Grilled Chicken Salad w/ Homemade Honey Dijon
    Uses leftover Honey Dijon Dressing

    Toss chicken tenders with a squeeze of Dijon, 1 to 2 tbsp olive oil, lemon zest, salt, and pepper.

    Heat a skillet over medium-high heat and coat with oil. Add coated chicken and sauté until browned and cooked through, about 3 to 4 minutes per side.

    Meanwhile, toss spinach leaves, chopped tomato, chunks of cheddar, and sliced red onion with leftover Dijon mustard.

    Top salad with grilled chicken and freshly ground black pepper.

    Day 5: Chicken Vodka Flatbread
    Uses leftover Vodka Sauce

    Preheat oven to 425 degrees and spray a baking or pizza sheet with cooking spray.

    Place flatbread on sheet and spoon on leftover vodka sauce. Top with chopped grilled chicken and chunks of fresh mozzarella.

    Bake 10 to 12 minutes until bread is crisp and cheese is bubbly. Serve topped with chopped fresh basil and parmesan cheese.


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    Brooke Viggiano is a contributing writer who is always looking to share Houston's coolest and tastiest happenings with the Houston Press readers.
    Contact: Brooke Viggiano