Posts Categorized: Quick

Shrimp, Meet Angel Hair

My daughters are 20 months apart in age. When they were babies, people would take one look at the hollowed-out shells that once housed our functioning selves and say It’s tough now, but you’ll be so grateful later when they play together. I thought these people were lying just to make me feel better. We were so in the thicket… Read more »

Girl Crazy

As far as omens go, it doesn’t get much worse than this. On a Wednesday evening a couple weeks ago, at about 7:30 pm, I proposed something radical: how about we eat on the couch tonight, while watching… Game One of the American League Division Series! This was greeted with surprising enthusiasm. Abby and Phoebe marched over with their plates… Read more »

Fish & Chips

I was thinking of adding a new category on the right over there called “Meals That Are Impossible To Photograph Because My Daughter Can’t Help But Eat The Subject.” Because don’t you think it’s saying something about the deliciousness of a meal when I have to instruct my poor, hungry, 8-year-old model “Stop eating your dinner!” as she mauls what’s… Read more »

Can You Start Dinner?

If you are in a commuting, two-working-parent relationship, the IM correspondence with your spouse between 4:00 and 5:00 PM probably reads something like this: d: train? m: 5:41 hopefully. u? d: 6:27. hopefully. m: dinner? d: dunno. what do u think? m: not sure. pasta? d: had pasta for lunch. chili? you there? hello? m: S#%T !!!!!! sue just called… Read more »

Cure for the Common Thursday

Do you guys suffer from Thursday Syndrome like I do? Symptoms include dry refrigerator, a shriveled vegetable supply, and feelings of guilt-fueled resistance to ordering in or going out. (That’s what Friday is for, you weakling!) Lucky for all of us there is a cure, and it involves a combination of the six magical grocery items below, all of which you… Read more »

The Six-Kid Crowdpleaser

A few weeks ago my friend Vanessa invited my family to her house for dinner. She and her husband cooked the most delicious meal — not to mention presented a perfect starter plate (prosciutto-wrapped bocconcini and halved fresh figs) that I’ve already stolen and passed off as mine in my own house. Twice. But the real highlight of the evening… Read more »

The Gateway Bean

Last summer, on the final day of school, I drove Phoebe up to Skaneatles, a beautiful postcard-y town in the Finger Lakes region of New York. It was a belated sixth birthday celebration, and an opportunity for a little old school father-daughter bonding. The plan was to stay two nights in the Sherwood Inn, go for a cruise around the… Read more »

Restaurant Replication

The first time I made this chicken and broccoli for Abby she bestowed upon me the highest form of praise: Mom, how’d you get this to taste like the one we order from the Chinese restaurant? Now, granted, this is no fancy Chinese restaurant. It’s so not fancy, actually, that we’ve never even seen the inside of the place. But… Read more »

Wax-On Wax-Off, the Kitchen Edition

My friend and Time for Dinner co-author Pilar Guzman has a theory about cooking from recipes (as opposed to improvising with what you’ve got in front of you). She calls it the Wax-On/Wax-Off theory. Remember how the Karate Kid had no idea he was developing muscle memory for defensive blocks until Mr. Miyagi took away the car-waxing cloth???  Pilar believes… Read more »

Back-Pocket Bolognese

. Meet Turkey Bolognese. This recipe has been in the rotation in our house for almost two decades. It was the sauce we cooked together in Andy’s first apartment (in 1994, in Brooklyn, when the only restaurant on Smith Street was The Red Rose) and the same one he made when we first came home from the hospital with a… Read more »

Spaghetti with (or without) Clams

I love sharing these kinds of recipes with parents. Doesn’t it look like we cooked up two completely different meals: one for the grown-ups (left) and one for the kids (right)? We didn’t at all. The astute eye will notice that everything you see on the right makes up the meal on the left. It just took a little think-work… Read more »

5-Minute Dinner: Flatbread Pizza with Arugula & Prosciutto

You know how I love my Jim Lahey pizza crust. How it has revolutionized pizza night in our house. How it is so easy to make that even someone who has never baked before can figure it out in about two seconds. Well, sometimes easy doesn’t translate to quick (the crust takes two un-manned hours to rise) and sometimes, revolution… Read more »

Back-Pocket Recipe: Rigatoni with Tomatoes

When I was in my twenties, I was obsessed with Gwyneth Paltrow. I was 25 and feeling lost career-wise when she had her first real star turn in Emma. I saw the movie opening weekend and read any profile of her that I could get my hands on. Every time I finished a story, I felt like I was in 6th… Read more »

10 Reasons to Go Open-Face for Dinner

1. Because it’s arguably easier and faster than cooking up another pot of Annie’s Mac & Cheese. 2. Because the afternoon birthday party served pizza at 4:00. (What is up with these parties? Will someone please enlighten?) 3. Because the clock is ticking and the kids won’t be awake by the time your dreamy white wine sauce has reduced. 4…. Read more »

It is So On

The best thing we eat this summer will take us three minutes to minutes to make. It will involve only five ingredients, a serrated knife, and not a single charcoal briquette. I’m talking about the tomato sandwich. Not the bacon-lettuce-and-tomato sandwich; not the grilled-cheese-and-tomato sandwich; not the tomato-mozzarella-and-basil sandwich: the tomato sandwich. Period. It is a thing of simple, summery, kid-friendly beauty: After enduring ten depressing months of the color-enhanced Styrofoam junk that passes for tomatoes at the Stop ‘N… Read more »

What We Can Learn From a Cast Iron Pan

I bought this Lodge pre-seasoned cast iron skillet about seven years ago after writing a story for Real Simple about pots and pans. The 8-inch skillet costs only 17 bucks, is naturally nonstick, moves easily from stovetop to oven, has been the site of untold thousands of pancake and French toast fry-ups, and, not least, is always good for conjuring up… Read more »

Tea Party Dinner

This is not exactly a traditional tea party spread, I realize. What you’re looking at is all the makings of one of my daughters’ favorite dinners: The BLT with Avocado on whole wheat toast. The girls get to assemble right at the table and it’s almost always good for a giggle: Sandwiches for dinner? Mom, you’re craaazy! On this particular… Read more »

Quack & Cheese

Just want to clear one thing up: My family does not all sit down to the same dish every single night. We do most nights. But like every house that is inhabited by humans born in the 21st century, there is the constant chorus of requests (an awfully nice way to put it) from the royal diners. I want spaghetti not… Read more »