Even with the best-laid plans, cooking during these unprecedented 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: Moroccan-Style Turkey Meatballs and Couscous
Game Plan: Start this pairing by focusing on the meatballs and sauce. Once the meatballs are simmering in the covered skillet (step 3), make the couscous. As the couscous steams, the meatballs should be cooked through and you can finish reducing the sauce.
We like 93 or 85 percent lean turkey in Moroccan-Style Turkey Meatballs, but ground chicken with a similar fat content will also work. We don’t recommend using 99 percent lean ground poultry. We prefer to add individual spices, but 1 tablespoon of garam masala can stand in for the cumin, coriander, cinnamon, and nutmeg. The pilaf method allows Couscous with Shallots, Garlic, and Almonds to cook up fluffy and separate. Half of a minced onion can be substituted for the shallots, and feel free to try a different nut—almonds and pistachios are good options.
Dinner 2: Grilled Salmon and Cucumber-Dill Salad
Game Plan: Start by salting the cucumbers. While the cucumbers sit, dry the salmon fillets, preheat the grill, and make the dressing. Toss the cucumbers with the dressing while the salmon cooks.
Our method for Grilled Salmon Fillets can be applied to other firm-fleshed fish of a similar thickness, including snapper, halibut, sea bass, or grouper. If grilling one of these fish, shoot for an internal temperature of 140 degrees. Cucumber-Dill Salad calls for English cucumbers, but regular cucumbers will work just fine; peel and seed them before salting. Parsley can be substituted for the dill.
Recipe for Charcoal-Grilled Salmon Fillet
Dinner 3: Pasta with Beans and Swiss Chard with Green Leaf and Radicchio Salad
Game Plan: Prep all of the ingredients for both dishes. Prepare the pasta dish, then toss the salad right before serving.
Pasta with Beans, Chard, and Rosemary calls for two types of beans—cannellini and pinto—but other varieties of white beans can be substituted. Bacon can be used in place of pancetta. Spinach can be swapped for Swiss chard, but we suggest using mature spinach rather than baby spinach. Our Green Leaf and Radicchio Salad with Grapefruit and Fennel combines soft, mineral-y green leaf lettuce with bitter, crunchy radicchio. Other types of lettuces and greens can be used; we suggest a mix of mild and bitter choices for balanced flavor. Thinly sliced celery can stand in for the fennel.