Make us your home page
Instagram

Weekday dinner inspiration: Pasta With Fresh Herbs and more

Janet K. Keeler is on assignment. This column was first published on Dec. 10, 2008. New columns resume next week.

Mon | Love me tenders

Make a salad with zing by scattering spicy chicken tenders over sturdy romaine. Buffalo-Inspired Chicken Salad can be made with takeout fingers or nuggets. Make your own by dipping chicken pieces in beaten egg and dredging in seasoned flour. Saute until brown on each side and bake for about 10 minutes in a 350-degree oven. Coat with a mixture of hot sauce and melted butter. Lay over greens that have been mixed with shredded cheese, diced cucumber and celery. Serve with blue cheese dressing.

Tue | Something fishy

Crunchy Parmesan Fish Fillets only seem fried. Dredge firm fish (like cod, grouper or halibut) in beaten egg then coat with a mixture that's half grated Parmesan cheese and half crushed cornflakes (or panko). Add a little cayenne to the mix if you want some heat. Coat a baking dish with nonstick spray and bake the fillets for about 10 minutes at 450 degrees. When halfway through, flip. They are done when the fish is flaky and opaque. Serve with macaroni salad and fresh fruit.

Wed | Rotisserie chicken

Buy the bird and make Pasta With Fresh Herbs (recipe below) to go with. This is a great recipe for using up leftover fresh herbs, but forgo the rosemary. Its powerful taste will muscle out anything else. A good combo is parsley and basil, with a bit of thyme.

Thur | Between two slices

Roast Beef Sandwiches go uptown with a slather of blue cheese dressing, sliced red onions and creamy butterkase cheese. (Okay, use cheddar if you want; hold the singles, please.) Pile it high on hoagie rolls or even split Cuban bread. Serve with pickled green beans, okra or even asparagus.

Fri | It's snowing somewhere

So make some soup to offer long-distance support. Quick White Bean & Ham Soup starts with a cubed ham steak. In a pot, saute minced onions and chopped celery in vegetable oil. Add the diced ham and 1 teaspoon of dried herbs (nearly anything you have on hand or a combination). Add vegetable broth and 2 cans of drained and rinsed white beans (Great northern or cannellini). Heat through. Serve with rolls.

Janet K. Keeler can be reached at jkeeler@tampabay.com or (727) 893-8586. Follow @roadeats on Twitter.

>>EASY

Pasta With Fresh Herbs

¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon minced garlic

1 cup or more mixed herbs, such as parsley, dill, chervil, basil, tarragon, sage, thyme, oregano, marjoram or mint (leaves and thin stems only)

1 tablespoon butter, optional

Salt

1 pound linguine or other long pasta

Freshly ground pepper

Begin heating a large pot of water for the pasta. Meanwhile, combine the oil and garlic in a small saucepan and turn the heat to medium-low. Saute gently, just until the garlic begins to color, then remove from the heat. Meanwhile, wash, dry and mince the herbs. Place them in a bowl large enough to hold the pasta. Cut the butter into bits, if you're using it, and add it to the bowl.

Salt the boiling pasta water and cook the pasta until tender but not mushy. Reserve ½ cup of the pasta cooking water, then drain the pasta and toss with the herbs and reserved oil-garlic mixture. Add a little more olive oil or some of the pasta water if you did not use butter and mixture seems dry. Season with salt and pepper and serve.

Serves 4 as side dish.

Source: The Minimalist Cooks Dinner by Mark Bittman (Broadway, 2001)

Weekday dinner inspiration: Pasta With Fresh Herbs and more 11/11/13 [Last modified: Monday, November 11, 2013 5:38pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Five ideas for cool summer snacks

    Cooking

    The 90-degree temperatures are not letting up anytime soon. We Floridians know to keep some cold treats on hand through September. Ice cream. Lemonade. Ice pops. Whether you're packing a beach cooler or preparing for a pool party, we've got you covered. Level up your summer snack game with these five refreshing …

    What’s not to like about a homemade ice cream sandwich? The thin chocolate cake bakes in about 10 to 12 minutes, and from there it’s all chilling out.
  2. Who is really making 'Chihuly art'?

    Visual Arts

    SEATTLE — More than 40 years later, Jeffrey Beers still vividly remembers what it felt like to have Dale Chihuly call up to convene a pre-dawn glassblowing session. You felt flattered and inspired, he said, jazzed by Mr. Chihuly's caffeinated freight train of energy and the idea of making art with him while most …

    The artist Dale Chihuly in his Seattle office, which holds some of his collections. [Kyle Johnson | for The New York Times]
  3. Frozen pops for breakfast? A perfect recipe for summer

    Cooking

    In the heat of the summer when you trade your hot coffee for iced, why not add some extra chill to your morning smoothie, too? That's essentially what these fun breakfast pops are: a frozen smoothie on a stick.

    Strawberry Almond Breakfast Pops are essentially a frozen smoothie on a stick, perfect for the heat of summer.
  4. Recipe for Chicken Wings with Coconut Sweet Potato Puree

    Cooking

    This dish is an homage to one of my favorite Epcot International Food and Wine Festival dishes: Grilled Beef Skewer With Chimichurri Sauce and Boniato Puree from the Patagonia kiosk. A boniato is a sweet potato with whiter flesh and a typically sweeter flavor. I use standard sweet potatoes in this recipe, plus a little …

    Chicken Wings with Sweet Potato Puree. Photo by Michelle Stark, Times Food Editor.
  5. The 'Total Eclipse' song from the '80s you never knew you loved

    Blogs

    Depending on when you read this, you are eagerly awaiting the eclipse or have seen all the commotion come and go for the first total solar eclipse across America since 1918. Without any doubts, sometime today you will probably have a chance to hear Bonnie Tyler's Total Eclipse Of The Heart, but here at Stuck in …