My kids start school this week and I’m currently moving my oldest into her sophomore dorm. Since her freshman year was at American University in Paris, this move-in feels much more “typical.” We’ve been to three Targets, Ikea, Pottery Barn and Macy’s. Considering there are multiple universities in the DC area, finding a twin duvet insert felt like hunting for a needle in a haystack. With some creativity and unlimited miles on our rental car, we did it. One thing I learned on this move-in: You can ship almost anything to your hotel ahead of time. I wish we had shipped everything ahead. But at this point, all that’s left is a celebratory dinner with a good glass of champagne.
Since I’m flying back to hot-town-Houston on Monday afternoon, I don’t have as many dinners at home this week. Here’s what’s on tap:
We have dinner out after a senior meeting at our high school. If you’re cooking at home, consider a meatless Monday dinner of Sheet Pan Ratatouille. Toss the finished veggies with pasta, serve them over polenta or alongside a salad and baked potato.
Between senior photos and cross-town volleyball games, I want something that will go in the slow cooker or Instant Pot early in the day. I’m making Defined Dish Whole30 Pot Roast, it looks so savory and like the perfect family meal for the night before school starts. I’ll serve this with steamed rice and salad. If you’d like more healthy Whole30 dinners, download my free Whole30 e-book.
I’m testing Sheet Pan Sausage, Brussels and Greens. Easy and hands-off, this recipe is something I tweaked from Smitten Kitchen. I have a recipe for Sheet Pan Sausage and Peppers on my blog if you want to give that a try instead.
- 1 ½ pounds small, unpeeled potatoes (red, Yukon gold, fingerling, Dutch baby), if small enough, cut in half, if larger, in 1-inch-thick wedges
- 1 pound Brussels sprouts, trimmed and cut in half
- 6 shallots, halved or quartered or 1 red onion, cut in wedges
- Extra-virgin olive oil
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Red pepper flakes (optional)
- 1 ½ pounds sausage, cut into 2-inch pieces
- One 5-ounce package of baby arugula or spinach
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, champagne vinegar or red wine vinegar
Heat oven to 425°. On a large rimmed sheet pan, toss the potatoes, Brussels sprouts and shallots with 3 tablespoons olive oil, 1 teaspoon kosher salt and a lot freshly ground black pepper or red pepper flakes to taste. Roast for 20 minutes, they should start to brown slightly. Give them a toss and add the sausages. Return the pan to the oven for another 30 to 40 minutes, until the potatoes and Brussels are very tender. To finish, transfer everything on the tray to a big bowl or serving tray and add arugula, lemon juice, and more salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.
Another cross-town volleyball game means I need a super easy dinner. I’m honestly “making” frozen tamales and salad with the super simple salad dressing that’s always in my fridge. Add avocado, cherry tomatoes, shaved corn and cilantro to your salad if the spirit moves you. I’m always exhausted on the first week of school, and so are my kiddos. An easy dinner is just what the doctor ordered.