Tuesday, July 12, 2011

{Tasty Tuesday: Two Super Fast Dinners Ideas}

I love to try new recipes and take my time in the kitchen. Still, sometimes what wins
over is a lack of motivation or time to plan, shop, chop, and prepare. The goal then
becomes making something:

* In about 15 minutes
* With a decent nutritional value
* Made mostly from items I can keep stocked in my pantry and freezer

Of course, there are also nights when I set the bar much lower and settle on cereal,
cucumbers & hummus, toast & peanut butter, steamed broccoli, cottage cheese &
fruit, or a frozen Amy's pizza. Just yesterday I tweeted that "my darling dogs & I
stood in the kitchen & shared a head of steamed cauliflower for dinner, with carrot
sticks for dessert," much to the dismay of a couple friends who said that was sad
even for a veggie or that carrot sticks are not, in fact, dessert. :)

But fast and easy doesn't have to be boring, unsatisfying or unhealthy. I've created a
couple quick concoctions lately that would triumph over a basic bowl of pasta and
sauce any day. They're super simple, fairly healthy, pretty economical, and tasty
(I think). Hopefully they'll help you next time you're in a pinch.

Tortellini with Artichokes, Roasted Red Peppers,
Sun Dried Tomatoes, & Zucchini
I sauteed up a few fresh ingredients -- yellow onion, shallot, garlic, and zucchini. I also
used fresh thyme, but you could go with dried instead. Then, I added my pantry items --
artichoke hearts, roasted red peppers, and sun dried tomatoes -- all of which I sliced or
bought pre-sliced. I poured the combination of vegetables over a large package of store
bought tortellini (which only takes 7-9 minutes to cook), and dinner was ready.

Rustic Spinach, Tomato and Beans

This one also has Italian flavors but through a different vibe -- less carby and more rustic.
I sauteed chopped red onions and garlic. Then, I popped in two handfuls of frozen corn
(mostly for color) and let the pan heat it through. I added a package of frozen spinach
(thawed and very well drained), one can diced tomatoes (juice included), a can of beans
(drained and rinsed), a couple shakes of red pepper flakes, Italian seasonings, a Table-
spoon or two of tomato paste, and salt & pepper to taste. Once it simmered for a bit, I
add a handful or two of shredded cheese to connect it all. You can pop it in a bowl by
itself (like I did), or elevate it by serving it over polenta or under sliced grilled chicken.

Check out Alissa's gorgeous blog. She hosts Tasty Tuesdays every week, and bloggers
from all over pop in to share their latest kitchen creations. It's a good place to get
dinner ideas or tempt yourself with ideas for baking -- totally worth a visit.

I hope you're well!


Lisa said...

That tortellini looks great! Good way to add some extra veggies to your meal without too much work!

Emily {Frilly Details} said...

Those meals look very tasty! Perfect for these hot summer days :)

Miss M! said...

I <3 you Sam, even if you do eat sad vegetarian food sometimes. :)

PS - the word verification for this is ANSAD. Coincidence? I think not.

Anonymous said...

These both look yummy! I love dishes that only take 7 minutes to cook and have lots of veggies in them!

Angie@Echoes of Laughter said...

Hi Samara! Thank you so much for visiting me and leaving a comment on my blog! This recipe looks so delish! I have been looking at all your recipes and they all look yummy! Have a wonderful Saturday! Angie xo

Kristi said...

Artichoke tortellini??!! Oh YUM!! That looks so good :)

masini second said...

Oh my God this looks so good and i`m sure that it is delicious too. I think it is not a very difficult recipe so i will give it a try, thanks a lot for sharing.