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Dinner This Week: Cooking from the Pantry - Vol. 3

By Keith Dresser Published

This week’s menus include Creamy Baked Four-Cheese Pasta, New England Fish Chowder, and Pasta e Ceci for dinner in about an hour.

Even with the best-laid plans, cooking during these strange times can be a challenge. So we've put together three recipe pairings, each with an entree and a side, that call for ingredients you may already have on hand. But if you don't have a particular ingredient or the supermarket is out of stock, don't worry; we've also provided ideas for subsitutions. 

Dinner 1: Creamy Baked Four-Cheese Pasta and Sautéed Garlic-Lemon Spinach

Creamy Baked Four-Cheese Pasta calls for a flavorful blend of four Italian cheeses: fontina, Gorgonzola, Pecorino Romano, and Parmesan. But feel free to experiment with different types of cheese. In total, you want to use about 2 cups of a “melty” cheese such as fontina, cheddar, Gruyère, or Monterey Jack, and ¾ cup of a hard cheese such as Parmesan, Asiago, or Pecorino Romano. For our Sautéed Garlic-Lemon Spinach, we prefer the sweet flavor and hearty texture of flat-leaf spinach, but curly spinach, Swiss chard, or Tuscan Kale (remove the stems before cooking) will also work. It's a good idea to avoid baby spinach because it will overwilt using this method. 

Printable Shopping Lists: Creamy Baked Four-Cheese Pasta and Sautéed Garlic-Lemon Spinach


 

Dinner 2: New England Fish Chowder and Green Beans

Any type of white flaky fish can be used in New England Fish Chowder. Cod and haddock are our favorites, but pollock, hake, or even tilapia can be substituted. If you don’t have salt pork, pancetta is a good stand-in. Bacon can also be used, but expect a hint of smoke. The flavorings for Sautéed Green Beans with Garlic and Herbs can be altered to suit what you have on hand. Feel free to use dried thyme (reduce to ¼ teaspoon) instead of fresh, or swap in another fresh herb. No lemons? Finish with a touch of balsamic vinegar instead. 

Printable Shopping Lists: New England Fish Chowder and Green Beans


 

Dinner 3: Pasta e Ceci and Steamed Broccoli

Pasta e Ceci is simple to prepare, yet packed full of satisfying flavor. The pancetta adds a meaty backbone, but it can be omitted. The anchovy provides depth, but it's OK to leave it out (or try adding ½ teaspoon of fish sauce). Any type of small, short pasta can be used in place of the ditalini. Steamed Broccoli is great served with just a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil and a squeeze of lemon. It’s also nice tossed with Garlic, Basil, and Lemon Butter or Shallot-Herb Butter.

Printable Shopping Lists: Pasta e Ceci and Steamed Broccoli


View more weeknight dinner ideas below, or check out all of the Dinner This Week menus.

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JC
JOHN C.
16 days

Absolutely the best chicken ever, even the breast meat was moist! It's the only way I'll cook a whole chicken again. Simple, easy, quick, no mess - perfect every time. I've used both stainless steel and cast iron pans. great and easy technique for “roasted” chicken. I will say there were no pan juices, just fat in the skillet. Will add to the recipe rotation. Good for family and company dinners too. I've done this using a rimmed sheet pan instead of a skillet and put veggies and potatoes around the chicken for a one-pan meal. Broccoli gets nicely browned and yummy!

Absolutely the best chicken ever, even the breast meat was moist! It's the only way I'll cook a whole chicken again. Simple, easy, quick, no mess - perfect every time. I've used both stainless steel and cast iron pans. great and easy technique for “roasted” chicken. I will say there were no pan juices, just fat in the skillet. Will add to the recipe rotation. Good for family and company dinners too.

MD
MILES D.
JOHN C.
9 days

Amazed this recipe works out as well as it does. Would not have thought that the amount of time under the broiler would have produced a very juicy and favorable chicken with a very crispy crust. Used my 12" Lodge Cast Iron skillet (which can withstand 1000 degree temps to respond to those who wondered if it would work) and it turned out great. A "make again" as my family rates things. This is a great recipe, and I will definitely make it again. My butcher gladly butterflied the chicken for me, therefore I found it to be a fast and easy prep. I used my cast iron skillet- marvellous!

CM
CHARLES M.
11 days

John, wasn't it just amazing chicken? So much better than your typical oven baked chicken and on par if not better than gas or even charcoal grilled. It gets that smokey charcoal tasted and overnight koshering definitely helps, something I do when time permits. First-time I've pierced a whole chicken minus the times I make jerk chicken on the grill. Yup, the cast iron was not an issue.