Dinner Just For Two — A Review

This morning, I forgot one critical thing, I am a wimp. So when I am making a recipe for 6 muffins that calls for 1 small jalapeno I probably should cut that down just a bit. Holy Hanna, those muffins packed a punch for 5:30 am!

The recipe came from Christina Lane’s new cookbook, Dinners Just For Two. Of Christina’s four cookbooks, Dinner Just For 2 is my favorite.

Things I like:

1. There are a large variety of recipes from the fancy Steak and Scalloped Potatoes to the simple, comforting Sloppy Joes with Tater Tots, my personal favorite.

2. Very few of her recipes call for any processed ingredients.

3. The ingredients lists and cooking times are generally not excessive.

4. If you follow Christine’s instructions, the recipes always come out. They are absolutely reliable.

5. There are extensive lists if how to use leftover ingredients. I am starting to think these kind of lists are absolutely vital to a cooking for one or two cookbook.

6. There are actually things I want to eat in this cookbook.

What I didn’t like about this book: Honestly, there isn’t anything I don’t like about this book. I have cooked from it at least one meal every day this week and I am still finding recipes I want to try.

If you’re looking for a cooking for one or two cookbook you will actually use, pick up a copy of Dinner Just For Two.

In the interest of full disclosure, my copy of Dinners Just For 2 was a gift from the author but my opinions are my own. If you have been hanging around here awhile you know my love for Christina Lane and her recipes has run deep for a long time.

Garlic Tahini Dressing (Whole 30)

I am slowly getting back into the kitchen and cooking. Training for my new job has been easier than I expected in someways and a whole hell of a lot harder than I expected in other ways, especially this week

So I have been giving myself grace and keeping it simple by eating a lot of salads and using things like boxed broth and jarred pasta sauce to make quick and easy meals.

The only thing I have made from completely scratch lately is salad dressing. I can hardly wait until training is over and I can get my scedule on a somewhat even keel again.

Garlic Tahini Dressing

From Well Fed Fresh And Hearty Salads

1 clove garlic

1/4 cup fresh parsley

1/4 cup water

3 TBS tahini

2 TBS lemon juice

1 TBS coconut aminos

1 TBS minced chives

1 tsp cider vinegar

1/4 tsp salt

1/8 tsp ground black pepper

1/3 cup olive oil

Peel and mince the garlic, place it in a pint size mason jar. Add remaining ingredients except olive oil. Whirl with a stick blender until smooth. With the blender running, slowly add the oil until blended.

Chicken Skillet Dinner

Chicken and Rice has always been one of my favorite meals, that’s why I have 3 different ways to make it on my blog, not counting this one. It’s cheap, easy and I almost always have the ingredients on hand for at least one of the versions I have posted.

If I already have 3 versions of chicken and rice on my blog, why do I need another one? I wanted to put this recipe here on the blog because it is the exactly like chicken and rice my mom used to make me and my brothers as kids. Well, at least, as close to what my mom made as I can remember. I have, literally, been looking for this recipe for years so I thought I would share.

Chicken Skillet Dinner

From the Woman’s Day Cooking For Two Cookbook

2 boneless, skinless Chicken Thighs

2 TBS soy sauce

1 TBS oil

1 small onion, chopped

1/4 lb mushrooms, sliced

1/2 cup uncooked rice

1/2 tsp celery seed

1 1/2 cup celery seed

1/3 cup frozen peas

Salt and pepper, to taste

Cut the chicken into strips. In a bowl, combine the strips wirh the soy sauce for 1 hour.

Heat the oil in a medium skillet and stir fry the chicken for 2 minutes. Add the onion, mushrooms, rice and celery seed; stir fry a few minutes more. Add the broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for about 12 minutes, without stirring. Add peas and simmer 3 minutes more or until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is cooked. Add salt and pepper, to taste.

Chickpea Salad Wraps

These wraps were easy to throw together using things I already had available. You can totally make this with canned chickpeas but if you can cook your own on the stove top or pressure cooker, it will be even better.

Chickpea Salad Wraps

Adapted From My Favorite Pastime


2 cups cooked chickpeas, rinsed and drained

2 Roma tomatoes, deseeded and diced

1/2 red bell pepper, diced

2 to 4 green onions, diced


1/4 cup oil

2 TBS lemon juice

2 TBS tahini paste

1 TBS water

1 garlic clove, crushed

1/2 tsp ground cumin

1/2 tsp ground cayenne or black pepper, to taste

1/2 tsp salt, to taste

In a small bowl, combine all salad ingredients. Mix well.

In small jar, combine all dressing ingredients. Cover with a lid and shake like crazy. This will give you a very creamy dressing. Add two tablespoons of the dressing to the salad and mix well. Use the rest to drizzle over the top of the wraps.

To make the wrap: Lay the tortilla or wrap on the counter. Add 1/3 to 1/2 cup chickpeas to the center of the tortilla. Don’t over stuff them. Fold the sides toward the middle and the bottom towards the middle and roll tight.

Note: I served the chickpeas I didn’t use in wraps on a salad, drizzled with the remaining dressing.

Sausage Stuffed Mini Peppers

There is nothing like a blizzard to inspire me to get back into the kitchen. Yep, a blizzard in April. Sigh. Even I, who doesn’t usually complain about the weather, was complaining about this crap. Hopefully, this is the last if it.

I am still not wanting to spend a huge amount of time cooking when I get home from training but I know I can’t keep eating out as much as I have been so I am looking for easy dump and cook recipes.

The original recipe for sausage stuffed mini peppers had 4 ingredients, sausage, mini bell peppers, a jar of pasta sauce and cheese. You certainly can make it that way. I don’t keep sausage of any kind on hand but always have ground beef in my freezer so I needed to figure out how to use what I have on hand. Yes, I did have a jar of pasta sauce on hand thanks to last weekend’s visit to Aldi’s to research my next Whole 30. More on that in a few weeks.

Sausage Stuffed Mini Peppers

Adapted From The Family Freezer Sausage spices by me

8 oz mini sweet bell peppers

8 oz ground beef

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp dried parsley

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1/4 tsp ground black pepper

1/4 tsp fennel seed

1/8 tsp red pepper flack

1 1/2 cup pasta sauce

2 oz mozzarella cheese

Cut the top off each pepper and remove as many seeds as you can.

Take each pepper and stuff some sausage into it. You want to push the sausage all the way into the bottom of the pepper, do the best you can. The number of peppers you will need will depend on how big they are. I used 10 and still had some beef left over so I got out a few more peppers.

Place the stuffed peppers in a single layer on the bottom of a baking dish. Add the pasta sauce over the top of the peppers and cover the sauce with cheese. If you stuffed extra peppers, feel free to add extra sauce and cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.