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Weekday Dinner Inspirations: Grilled Cheese Salad and more

Mon | Bake 'em twice

Spicy Twice-Baked Potatoes with Goat Cheese is a vegetarian dish that will wake up your Monday. While potatoes are baking, make the filling. Saute diced and seeded jalapenos in a bit of olive oil. When 'taters are done, gently scoop out flesh and mix with sauteed jalapenos, sour cream, goat cheese, chopped sun-dried tomatoes and cilantro. Season with salt and pepper. Scoop back into skins and bake for 10 minutes at 400 degrees.

Tues | Salad or sandwich?

Now for something completely different: Grilled Cheese Salad. Grill several cheese sandwiches, and when they are slightly cooled, cut into bite-sized squares. Make a salad of greens, chopped Granny Smith apples and/or fresh figs when they are in season. Dress with a vinaigrette made with apple cider or sherry vinegar. Scatter the grilled cheese bits over salad like croutons.

Wed | Rotisserie chicken

The corn on the cob looks so good right now that I suggest boiling and eating simply with a bit of butter. Or sprinkle some grated Parmesan on those sweet kernels. Slices of rotisserie chicken plus macaroni salad feel like a summer dinner for sure.

Thurs | A second chance

Panzanella with Fresh Mozzarella and Salami gives day-old bread a new life. Mix cubes of slightly stale country or loaf (not sandwich) bread with diced fresh mozzarella and salami plus lots of chopped fresh basil and diced tomatoes. Dress with a red wine or balsamic vinaigrette and season with salt and pepper. The juice from the dressing and tomatoes revives the bread.

Fri | Flavor tango

Chimichurri is a brightly flavored Argentine herb sauce. It is usually green (parsley and cilantro) and can be used as a marinade or sauce. In Pork Chops with Smashed Potatoes and Chimichurri Sauce (recipe below), it is an accompaniment to grilled pork chops. The recipe calls for boneless chops, but you can use whatever type you would like.

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Pork Chops with Smashed Potatoes and Chimichurri Sauce

1 1/2 pounds small red-skinned potatoes

Kosher salt

3/4 cup fresh parsley

3/4 cup fresh cilantro

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing

1 medium shallot, roughly chopped

1 clove garlic, roughly chopped

2 tablespoons white wine vinegar or fresh lemon juice

Freshly ground pepper

8 thin boneless pork chops (1 1/4 to 1 1/2 pounds)

Put the potatoes in a large pot and cover with cold water. Add 2 teaspoons salt, partially cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat and simmer until tender, about 10 minutes. Drain, then return the potatoes to the pot and coarsely mash with a large spoon. Cover and keep warm.

Meanwhile, make the chimichurri sauce: Pulse the parsley, cilantro, olive oil, shallot, garlic, vinegar and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper in a food processor to form a coarse paste.

Heat a large grill pan over medium-high heat. Pat the pork chops dry and season with salt and pepper. Lightly brush the grill pan with olive oil, then grill the chops until just cooked through, about 2 minutes per side. Serve the pork chops and potatoes with the chimichurri sauce.

Serves 4.

Source: Food Network magazine

Weekday Dinner Inspirations: Grilled Cheese Salad and more 06/21/11 [Last modified: Tuesday, June 21, 2011 4:30am]
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