If you have no ideas for dinner, one of my old tricks to spark some creativity is to choose a letter from the alphabet and work around that letter with a great menu plan that can get quite a lot of attention.
For example, my dear friend, Ruth, picked the letter “L” recently while we strolled through the local supermarket in search of inspiration because we had no ideas for dinner. Hmm, that would be lard, lemonade, and linguine, I said to her.
“Remember when we used to have food cooked with lard?” she mused. “Yes, and that’s when food had a better flavor,” I quipped back, knowing that the use of melted pig fat for frying and baking is taboo in most restaurants and health-conscious homes these days. “So, we’ll take lard off our no-ideas-for-dinner list.”
We moved to the fresh fruit aisle and picked out some nice lemons to make our lemonade beverage for our no-ideas-for-dinner dinner. My basic recipe is one cup sugar to one cup lemon juice, and the rest is approximately two quarts of water (or whatever amount of water fills my pitcher). I always slice the lemon into slivers after squeezing and add it to the lemonade. Makes a nice presentation and the lemon oil in the peeling intensifies the lemonade flavor.
OTHER L WORDS
Liverwurst – A nice paté on crackers for an appetizer.
Lettuce - We could have a mixed greens salad with a Louis dressing (mayonnaise and chili sauce, minced green onion, chopped green chiles).
Linguine with Lobster Sauce – Rich but would make a lovely entrée. Lobster sauce is available ready-made in jars and some deli sections of the supermarket.
Ladyfingers or Layer Cake – How about a few ladyfingers or a slice of layer cake for dessert drizzled with Limóncello (lemon liqueur), which would go nicely with coffee au lait (and compliment the lemonade).
Ruth and I fixed our “L” no-ideas-for-dinner dinner, and it was delightful. After so many years of trying to be creative, we actually enjoy using the random letter approach occasionally when we have no ideas for dinner (seems to be happening more frequently these days, LOL).
I wonder how a No-Ideas-for-Dinner Cookbook would work using just the alphabet for inspiration (and Matilda’s Fantastic Cookbook Software of course.) I’ll have to think about that.