Every week, Executive Food Editor Keith Dresser pairs each main dish with a side to give you a complete, satisfying dinner without the guesswork. Look for the game plan section to learn tips on how to streamline your kitchen work so dinner comes together quicker.
Dinner 1: Greek-Style Shrimp and Sautéed Garlic-Lemon Spinach
Greek-Style Shrimp with Tomatoes and Feta starts by seasoning large shrimp with garlic, lemon zest, ouzo, and salt. Next, we create a sauce by sautéing onion, garlic, and bell peppers and rounding out the aromatics with dry white wine and more ouzo. Gently simmering the shrimp and sauce together allows for an exchange of flavors. Finally, we call for sprinkling a generous amount of feta on top: Some will melt into the sauce and the rest will remain as a flavorful presence. For our Sautéed Garlic-Lemon Spinach, we prefer the sweet flavor and hearty texture of flat-leaf spinach. After the spinach is cooked, we use tongs to squeeze it in a colander over the sink to get rid of its excess moisture. Once it is dry, we season it with a squeeze of lemon juice and some grated lemon zest, as well as a pinch of red pepper flakes for gentle heat.
Dinner 2: Steak Tips with Gravy and Mashed Potatoes with Scallions
Our one-pan Steak Tips with Mushroom-Onion Gravy calls for relatively inexpensive sirloin tips, which have lots of marbling for flavor and tenderness. We combine dried porcini mushrooms with deeply browned onions and white mushrooms for a rich sauce that we finish with sprinkles of minced garlic and woodsy thyme. Mashed Potatoes with Scallions and Horseradish start with rich, satisfying mashed potatoes made with just the right amounts of butter and half-and-half. We then jazz things up by adding two types of horseradish (fresh and prepared), along with fresh-tasting scallion greens.
Dinner 3: Deviled Pork Chops and Pan-Roasted Asparagus
Our Deviled Pork Chops are slow-roasted in a low oven in order to keep the lean meat as juicy as possible. We “devil” the chops by painting them with a bold, balanced mix of spicy, sharp Dijon mustard combined with dry mustard (for an extra jolt of heat), minced garlic, and cayenne and black peppers. For textural contrast and visual appeal, we coat the tops of the chops with crispy toasted panko bread crumbs. Pan-Roasted Asparagus delivers crisp, evenly browned spears without the fuss of having to rotate each spear individually. The secret is to add just a little butter to the skillet. As the butter melts, it creates enough to steam to cook the asparagus to a perfect crisp-tender texture. Meanwhile, the butter browns, lending a nutty, roasted flavor to the spears.