Like many people, I have two styles to my cooking: for company, and for me and my partner. For the former, I spend more time on dishes that are perhaps a little flashier and usually (but not always) more involved, and even if I get creative, I typically start with a solid base of dependable recipes. Night in and night out, though, what comes to the table is much more off the cuff. And sometimes when I start I don't know how I'm going to finish, or what the result might be.
The more entertaining I do on some nights or seasons, the more I crave simplicity wherever else I can find it. Which is why a weeknight dinner is often a grain-bowl-type concoction of leftovers, or a taco or salad of the same.
Sometimes it's merely a quickly cooked vegetable or two, simply seasoned, perhaps bound together with a little something extra, then loosely scooped onto a starch of choice. That's what I did last week when I made a mushroom-spinach saute and piled it onto flatbread. The idea came from the new book Eat Beautiful by Wendy Rowe. She calls for making your own plain buckwheat flatbreads for the base, and I imagine the combination of the grain's earthiness would play well with the mushrooms and their touch of creme fraiche. But I found the dough to be so tricky to work with — simultaneously sticky and crumbly — that I gave up and dug out some frozen lavash.
The latter is more in the weeknight spirit, anyway. Perhaps the next time I'm cooking for company I'll tackle that dough — or a version of it — again.