It is Fast Friday again and time for another fast and fabulous dinner suggestion. If you are anything like me, by the time Friday rolls around the last thing you want to do to cook a big meal yet we all still have to eat. The dishes featured in this series aren’t necessarily fancy but they bring together simple ingredients most people already have in their pantries or have easy access to and allow you to put a real meal on the table in between 30 and 45 minutes. Enjoy and if you have your own fast recipes you want to share, please send them my way and I will in turn share them with all of my readers.
I absolutely love this pasta dish from Noble Pig. The ingredients are quite simple–pasta, either fresh or frozen, summer squash and bit of cheese and cream. But when these ingredients are pulled all together the results are truly delicious. The secret is the combination of cream and parmesan cheese combined with bright and tangy lemon zest. It is unexpected yet so welcome. And as an added bonus you truly get a balanced meal in a single dish thanks in part to a generous amount of squash. What a perfect end of the week meal. Enjoy!
CREAMY RAVIOLI w/ SQUASH, LEMON & CHIVES
16 to 18 ounces cheese ravioli
1 Tablespoon olive
1 shallot, chopped
3 summer squash (zucchini and/or yellow squash; about 1-1/2 pounds), thinly sliced
Kosher salt and black pepper
3/4 cup heavy cream
1 Tablespoon grated lemon zest
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
- Cook the pasta according to the package directions. Reserve 1/2 cup of the cooking water; drain the pasta and return it to the pot.
- Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the shallot and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, 3 to 4 minutes.
- Add the squash and 1/2 teaspoon each of salt and pepper to the skillet.
- Cook, tossing often, until the vegetables are just beginning to soften, 4 to 5 minutes.
- Add the cream and lemon zest and cook until the vegetables are tender and the cream is slightly thickened, about 1 to 2 minutes.
- Add the squash mixture, grated cheese and 1/4 cup of the reserved cooking water to the cooked ravioli and toss gently to coat. Add additional reserved water if the sauce is too dry.
- Serve sprinkled with the chives.
It’s Fast Friday again and time for another fast and fabulous dinner suggestion. If you are anything like me, by the time Friday rolls around the last thing I want to do is cook a big meal yet we all still have to eat. The dishes featured in this series aren’t necessarily fancy but they bring together simple ingredients most people already have in their pantries or have easy access to and allow you to put a real meal on the table in between 30 and 45 minutes. Enjoy and if you have your own fast recipes you want to share, please send them my way and I will in turn share them with all of my readers.
This is a fast and fresh tasting dinner option adapted from Cooking Light that literally cooks in minutes (so be sure to prep all of your ingredients before beginning to cook). There are just a handful of ingredients and best of all, everything is cooked in a single pan meaning cleanup is a snap as well. I’ve used flounder in this recipe but use whatever firm white fish you prefer.
BROWNED BUTTER FLOUNDER w/ LEMON SNAP PEAS
4- 6 ounce flounder fillets
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/4teaspoon kosher salt
4 teaspoons olive oil, divided
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
Juice of 1 lemon
Zest of 1 lemon
8 ounces sugar snap peas, trimmed
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
- Combine the flour, black pepper, garlic powder, paprika and salt in a shallow dish.
- Dredge the fish in the flour mixture, shaking off any excess.
- Heat half of the oil in a large non-stick skillet set over medium-high heat.
- Swirl the oil to coat then add the fish to the pan, cooking for 3 minutes on each side or until the fish flakes easily with a fork.
- Remove the fish from the pan and keep warm.
- Reduce the heat to medium and add the butter to the pan.
- Cook for 1 minute or until the butter begins to brown.
- Pour the butter into a small bowl, stir in half of the lemon juice and the parsley.
- Return the pan to medium-high heat and add the remaining oil.
- Add the snap peas and cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until just tender crisp.
- Stir in the remaining lemon juice and zest and serve alongside the fish topped with the brown butter.
I love scones but they tend to be an overlooked breakfast item in my house. I will always select one when I am at a bakery yet at home, when it comes to making a breakfast treat, I am more apt to decide to make muffins. I’m not sure why because scones are so easy and often faster to make than muffins. They are tender and flakey and in many respects combine the best of a biscuit and a muffin. Simply put, they are so good. That said, I really need to make them more often.
And what better way to start making scones than with this so easy and tasty recipe adapted from the Smitten Kitchen. These scones are tender and filled with juicy blueberries. A generous dose of lemon zest brightens the berries and makes these the perfect way to start off your day. So pop them in the oven and before your coffee is brewed, they will be done. Enjoy!
2 cups all purpose flour
Zest of 1 lemon, finely grated
3 tablespoons light brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
5 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small bits
1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries
2/3 cup whole milk
1 large egg, beaten
1 tablespoon coarse sugar, for finishing
- Heat oven to 400°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine the flour, lemon zest, sugar, baking powder and salt.
- Add the cold butter and using a pastry blender, work it into the flour mixture until the biggest pieces are the size of small peas.
- Stir in the blueberries and the milk, mixing only until large clumps form.
- Use your hands to reach inside the bowl and knead the mixture into one mass. Do this quickly, kneading the dough as little as possible in order to make it come together.
- Transfer dough to a well-floured counter and pat into a roughly 1-inch tall disc.
- Cut into 8 to 10 wedges.
- Transfer the wedges to the prepared baking sheet, spacing them apart.
- Brush the tops of each with egg, then sprinkle with coarse sugar.
- Bake for 15 to 17 minutes, until scones are golden brown on top. Serve warm.