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Weeknight Cooking

Dinner This Week: Spanish Grilled Pork Kebabs

This week’s menus include Spanish Grilled Pork Kebabs, Pasta with Cauliflower, and Moqueca for dinner in about an hour.

Published Aug. 23, 2023.

Every week, Executive Food Editor Keith Dresser pairs each main dish with a side to give you a complete, satisfying dinner without the guesswork. Look for the game plan section to learn tips on how to streamline your kitchen work so dinner comes together quicker.

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Dinner 1: Spanish Grilled Pork Kebabs and Couscous

Game Plan: Start by brining the pork. After 15 minutes of brining, heat your grill. Meanwhile, prep the couscous. Grill the pork. While pork is resting, cook the couscous (its OK that the pork will end up resting for longer than 5 minutes.)

For Pinchos Morunos, we prefer to use boneless country-style pork ribs, but pork loin can be used in a pinch. If using pork loin, cook the kebabs to 140 degrees to prevent the meat from drying out. Couscous with Dried Cherries and Pecans relies on the pilaf method to produce a light, fluffy texture. Dried cranberries can be used in place of the cherries, and other nuts, such as almonds or walnuts, can be swapped for the pecans.

Printable Shopping Lists: Pinchos Morunos and Couscous

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Dinner 2: Pasta with Cauliflower and Arugula Salad

Game Plan: Start by roasting the garlic for the pasta. Meanwhile, prep the remaining pasta ingredients and the components for the salad. Once the pasta dish is complete, rewhisk the dressing to combine, and toss the salad.

For Pasta with Roasted Cauliflower, Garlic, and Walnuts, we roast cauliflower florets to bring out their sweet, complex flavor. This dish is best with short, molded pasta shapes such as fusilli, campanelle, or orecchiette. For our Arugula Salad with Pears, Almonds, Goat Cheese, and Dried Apricots, we use sweet and salty ingredients—dried apricots and goat cheese—to balance the assertiveness of the arugula while accommodating its lively, peppery flavor. Other sweet dried fruits such as cherries can be swapped in, and creamy feta can stand in for the goat cheese.

Printable Shopping Lists: Pasta with Cauliflower and Arugula Salad

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Dinner 3: Moqueca with Rice Pilaf

Game Plan: Start by preparing the stew through step 3. Next, start the rice pilaf. As soon as the rice is gently simmering, turn your attention back to the stew and begin step 4. Once the seafood is fully cooked, the rice will be ready. If you have any leftover lime juice and chopped cilantro from the Moqueca, stir them into the rice before serving to boost its flavor.

Moqueca is a bright, fresh-tasting dish that comes together easily. We call for cod, but haddock or other firm-fleshed, flaky white fish can be substituted. Other sizes of shrimp will work here, but we prefer to use untreated shrimp. As a foil to all of the bold flavors, we pair the stew with Basic Rice Pilaf. We like the flavor that butter brings to the rice, but oil (either vegetable or olive) is a good substitute. 

Printable Shopping Lists: Moqueca and Rice Pilaf

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


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