Our suggestions for what to cook this weekend include everything from an Italian panzanella salad recipe for a Tuscan style bread and tomato salad that tastes of summer in Italy to a smoked salmon pasta recipe for spaghetti with smoked salmon, dill pickles, capers and fresh dill.
If you’re a first-time visitor to Grantourismo, What to Cook this Weekend is a weekly-ish series with suggestions for often easy, occasionally challenging, but always memorable weekend meals. Meal ideas might include dishes that we are cooking at home, which we think you might enjoy, as well as recipes that we’re developing and testing out for our cookbooks.
Recipes come from our Grantourismo archives, which are heaving with thousands of recipes for dishes from around the world, beginning with recipes from our first series, The Dish, on the quintessential dishes of places we settled into when we launched Grantourismo with our 12 month global grand tour back on New Year’s Day 2010.
Before I share suggestions for what to cook this weekend, I have a favour to ask. Grantourismo is reader-supported. If you’ve enjoyed our recipes, please consider supporting Grantourismo and what we do here by buying us a coffee (we’ll use our coffee money to buy cooking ingredients for recipe testing) or making a donation to our epic, original Cambodian cookbook and culinary history on Patreon.
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We might earn a small commission from your purchases on sites, such as Amazon, and we have plenty of inspiration here in our round-ups of James Beard award-winning cookbooks, cookbooks by Australian chefs, classic cookbooks for serious cooks, cookbooks for culinary travellers, travel books to inspire wanderlust, gifts for Asian food lovers, picnic lovers and travellers who love photography. Now let’s share our suggestions as to what to cook this weekend.
What to Cook This Weekend from Panzanella Bread and Tomato Salad to Juicy Tefteli Meatballs
Here are our ideas as to what to cook this weekend.
Saturday Breakfast – Nasi Goreng Recipe for Indonesian Fried Rice
For breakfast Saturday, why don’t you try this week’s Weekend Eggs recipe, a classic nasi goreng recipe for Indonesia’s delicious fried rice. Nasi goreng simply means ‘fried rice’and in Indonesia it’s eaten anytime, for breakfast, brunch, a snack, lunch, dinner, you name it.
If you’ve been to Bali or Yogyakarta or travelled anywhere in Indonesia – or Malaysia or Singapore for that matter – you’ve undoubtedly tucked into a plate of nasi goreng at your hotel, a restaurant or a warung, a little shack, shop or kiosk serving local street food.
We top our nasi goreng with fried eggs with runny yolks and stir-fried prawns, sprinkle on sliced scallions, roasted peanuts and crispy fried shallots, and serve some cucumber and tomato on the side.
It’s typically served with leftover satay or fried chicken. We had some leftover Cambodian beef skewers and sweet sausages with our latest batch that we shot for this post.
If you’re a fried rice lover you’re going to love this recipe, and if you are a fan of fried rice with fried eggs, you should also enjoy our kimchi fried rice. We have more fried rice recipes right here.
Saturday Lunch – Panzanella Recipe for the Tuscan Bread and Tomato Salad
We have some stale bread to use up, so I’m making this easy panzanella salad recipe for lunch today. It makes the delicious Tuscan style bread and tomato salad that tastes of summer in Italy. A traditional recipe, it’s versatile – just don’t tell your Italian friends!
A simple bread salad with onions and cucumbers before tomatoes arrived in Italy, panzanella was created to make use of old bread – the hallmark of povera cucina, the no-waste cooking of the countryside.
Some of the world’s most beautiful fresh produce is to be found in Italy – which is why some of the most delicious Italian dishes are made from just two or three ingredients: prosciutto e melon; the fresh mozzarella and tomatoes that comprise Caprese salad; and cacio e pepe, perhaps the world’s simplest pasta, made from cheese and pepper.
Of course, dishes such as these wouldn’t taste nearly as delicious as they do without a liberal dousing of quality olive oil and vinegar, a sprinkle of sea salt and cracked pepper, and handful of fresh Italian herbs with their heady perfumes, such as Genoese basil.
This panzanella salad recipe is one of those quintessentially ‘less is more’ Italian dishes consisting of little else but sweet ripe tomatoes, crunchy cucumbers, zingy onions, aromatic basil, extra virgin olive oil and vinegar, and… stale days-old bread. That’s lunch sorted.
Saturday Dinner – Russian Meatballs Recipe for Tefteli
Ever since I made these meatballs Stroganoff and wrote up that recipe earlier this week, I’ve been craving meatballs. I’m addicted to the thing. I can’t cook Stroganoff meatballs again, so I’m going to make this Russian meatballs recipe for tefteli tonight.
This recipe makes some of the juiciest meatballs you’ll ever taste. Made with ground beef and minced pork, grated carrot, and cooked rice, these incredibly delicious meatballs are coated in flour, fried until brown to lock in their juices, and simmered in a rich, creamy tomato sauce to finish cooking and soak up even more flavour.
I know I told you that our Italian-style meatballs recipe made some of the best meatballs ever for the most flavoursome and juiciest meatballs you’ll taste. But I hadn’t yet shared my baboushka’s Russian meatballs recipe for tefteli, an even softer, even more succulent, yet textured meatball thanks to the cooked rice and grated carrot.
Like our recipe for the Italian-style meatballs, this recipe for my Russian-Ukrainian grandmother’s home-cooked meatballs is another of our best meatball recipes – which, if you haven’t browsed that collection, includes recipes for all kinds of meatballs, from the Spanish meatballs called albondigas to the meatballs squeezed into baguettes here in Cambodia. They’re so filling, all we’ll need is a crisp green garden salad on the side.
Sunday Breakfast – Pesto Scrambled Eggs Recipe
I picked up a big beautiful bunch of fragrant basil from the market so for breakfast on Sunday I’m going to make this pesto scrambled eggs recipe.
It makes silky soft scrambled eggs with basil pesto on sourdough, with a drizzle of pesto oil, grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, a sprinkle of pine nuts, and fresh basil leaves, and it’s one of our best scrambled eggs recipes.
Using the freshest eggs you can get hold of makes a big difference when it comes to getting really silky eggs. We use a good fresh Teflon-coated 24 cm pan with high sides that does not get used for anything other than eggs and is only touched by a silicone spatula (and a soft sponge).
When you turn the heat up to high and the butter starts to brown, you need to work fast. The eggs will cook in less than 90 seconds if you use this method. What you want is for the eggs to get nearly cooked through and remain glossy on top.
Cooking the eggs this way results not in curds of scrambled egg, but a whole pan of egg mixture that is somewhere between scrambled eggs and an omelette, which Terence usually flips in half to serve atop the sourdough toast.
Sunday Lunch – Warm Potato Salad Recipe with Anchovies, Capers, Chives and Celery Leaves
How about this easy warm potato salad recipe with anchovies, capers, chives and celery leaves for lunch on Sunday? It makes a fresh green Mediterranean style potato salad with a zingy dressing of lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil and sherry vinegar.
And while wonderful served warm, it also tastes delicious chilled. Not a celery leaf lover? Try flat leaf parsley instead. However you eat it, wash it all down with a chilled glass of sauvignon blanc. It makes a sublime meal.
Sunday Dinner – Spaghetti with Smoked Salmon, Dill Pickles, Capers and Fresh Dill
We have a packet of smoked salmon in the fridge that’s getting close to its expiry date, so I think I’ll make this smoked salmon pasta recipe for spaghetti with smoked salmon, dill pickles, capers and fresh dill.
I love that it’s such a versatile recipe – even if I do say so myself! – you can add more sour cream for a creamier texture or a dollop of caviar for a special occasion – and it comes together quickly, in less than half an hour.
Use the best quality smoked salmon you can afford. We’re very lucky in that Cambodians adore salmon, so we have very affordable smoked salmon available here.
We can also get great capers from Pantelleria, which are considered the finest, plus good quality extra virgin olive oil. I make our homemade dill pickles or gherkins, however, you can certainly use store-bought.
The more fresh fragrant dill the better and I also like to squeeze on some additional lemon juice at the end, so if you’re making this for guests I’d suggest providing dishes of lemon quarters and dill on the table.
Please do let us know if you make any of our What to Cook this Weekend recipes in the comments below as we’d love to get your feedback and hear how our recipes turned out for you.