8 Meals to Help You Chill Out After a Crazy Week
You made it to the end of the week...now, what's for dinner? These easy, fun-to-eat meals will help you unwind.
Photo: Mrs. T's Pierogies
The Unfussy Quiche
Frozen pierogi that you boil on the stovetop are a fine late-night snack on their own, dipped in sour cream. But when you bake them into a crustless quiche with veggies and a simple egg-and-milk mixture, they become even more satisfying. With a side salad and some good bread, you've got an easy, French-inspired dinner.
Get the recipe: Crustless Pierogi Quiche
Photo: Juan Patiño Photography
The Crunchy, Cheesy Classic (with a Surprise)
Sometimes a gooey, toasty sandwich is just what you need after four nights of variations on chicken and salad (or pork chops and salad, or salmon and salad). This grilled cheese recipe proves that when you use high-quality ingredients like salty Comté and fresh sourdough bread, you don't need fancy techniques. One simple trick adds deep flavor: Rub a cut garlic clove on the inside of the bread before adding the other components. Then, cook the sandwich over medium-low heat for optimal ooze-to-crunch.
Get the recipe: Grilled Cheese Sandwich with Goat Cheese and Tomato
The Messy, Gooey, Woohoo! Dinner
What better way to celebrate your victory over the workweek than eating dinner with your hands from one big plate in the middle of the table? Jenny Rosenstrach, author of the blog and new book Dinner: A Love Story
, adds turkey chili to tortilla chips, melts cheese on top and lets everyone dig in.
Get the recipe: Turkey Chili
Easy, Breezy Seaside Dinner
If you can't eat dinner overlooking the ocean, this might just be the next best thing: fresh, briny clams, steamed open, mixed with sautéed shallot, garlic and pepper flakes, and served over spaghetti or on their own with crusty bread for sopping. Rosenstrach throws in chopped fresh herbs, tomatoes and corn off the cob too.
Get the recipe: Spaghetti with Clams (and Extras)
A New Twist on the Unofficial End-of-the-Week Supper
We're pretty sure that 98 percent of Americans consider a Friday night of pizza, popcorn and a movie to be a pretty satisfying way to kick back after five days of hard work. If you're hankering for something new, though, try this recipe, which has you grill flatbread (you can make your own dough or just buy refrigerated pizza dough) and then top it with a sweet-salty mix of peaches and Serrano ham.
Get the recipe: Grilled Cornmeal Flatbreads with Peaches, Serrano Ham and Spicy Greens
Burgers That Certainly Don't Taste Like Leftovers
Putting any food between a couple buns is an instant way to make it more festive and easygoing, but that isn't the only reason we love ending the week with fish cakes. You can make them with any little bits of baked flaky fish (like bass or cod) that you didn't finish earlier in the week.
Get the recipe: Fish Cakes
The Grilled Dinner That's Heaven on a Friday Night
Cold drink? Check. Hot grill? Check. The smell of a steak lightly charring on said grill? That's what we're talking about. Mark Bittman's "recipe" for grilling strip steak or rib eye is so simple a caveman could...oh, never mind.
Get the recipe: Grilled or Broiled Steak
An Indulgent Side Dish (Made Just a Little Healthier)
You don't need a deep fryer to make your own crispy french fries; this recipe explains how to do it in the oven using zucchini instead of potatoes. Serve the Parmesan-coated sticks with grilled ham-and-cheese sandwiches for a laid-back but wholesome meal.
Get the recipe: Parmesan Zucchini Fries
Next: Making salmon? Here's what to serve on the side