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Recipes

Easy dinner recipes: 3 great recipes in 30 minutes or less

June 21, 2013|By Noelle Carter

Looking for dinner options that come together in 30 minutes or less. Whether you're thinking a simple pasta dish, or perhaps steamed corn with clams and bacon, or even a filling quesadilla, we've got ideas to help you out.

Pasta, butter, lemon, basil, cream, Parmigiano and freshly ground black pepper. Could dinner possibly get any easier? Fresh basil and a touch of lemon are infused with the richness of heavy cream, then poured over pasta. Topped with fresh-grated Parmigiano and a little ground pepper, it makes for a remarkably easy but elegant meal! The recipe is adapted from Angelini Osteria in Los Angeles and comes together in about 30 minutes.

Just a handful of ingredients -- including corn, clams and bacon -- come together in a dish that's pure magic. Fresh corn is steamed with clams in a bacon-rich wine broth for a quick-fix dinner. The recipe takes less than 30 minutes to prepare.

RECIPES: 25 dinner ideas you can make in an hour or less

Dinner doesn't get much better -- or more simple -- than quesadillas. Melt some cheese over a warm tortilla, add an extra filling or two, and you're good to go. In this variation, tortillas are stuffed with quickly cooked greens and chunks of feta and mozzarella, the tortillas warmed until lightly browned and the cheese oozes just slightly. The recipe comes together in minutes, perfect after a long day.

For more ideas, click through our easy dinner recipes gallery and check out our Dinner Tonight page, devoted to recipes that can be made in an hour or less. Looking for a particular type of recipe? Comment below or email me at noelle.carter@latimes.com.

ANGELINI OSTERIA'S TAGLIOLINE AL LIMONE

Total time: About 30 minutes

Servings: 4

Note: Adapted from Angelini Osteria in Los Angeles

1/2 pound tagliolini pasta

2 tablespoons butter

8 large basil leaves, julienned

2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons lemon juice

1 cup heavy cream

1/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Fresh ground black pepper

Lemon wedges, garnish

1. Cook the pasta: In a large bowl of salted boiling water, add the pasta. Cook until al dente according to the package instructions. Drain the pasta.

2. While the pasta is cooking, start to make the sauce: In a medium sauté pan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the basil and cook, stirring frequently, until aromatic, about 3 minutes. Stir in the lemon juice and continue to cook until the lemon juice is reduced by half. Reduce the heat to low and add the cream. Slowly cook the cream until it thickens to a sauce consistency, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat.

3. Divide the pasta between 4 to 6 serving bowls and ladle the sauce evenly over the servings. Divide the cheese between the portions, sprinkling it evenly over the sauce, and top each serving with a few grinds of pepper. Serve each portion with a lemon wedge on the side.

Each serving: 490 calories; 9 grams protein; 45 grams carbohydrates; 2 grams fiber; 30 grams fat; 19 grams saturated fat; 101 mg cholesterol; 2 grams sugar; 59 mg. sodium.

STEAMED CORN WITH CLAMS AND BACON

Total time: 30 minutes

Servings: 4

Note: Adapted from "Seamus Mullen's Hero Food." Aleppo pepper can generally be found at gourmet and cooking supply stores, and is available online.

1/2 cup diced slab bacon

4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

24 littleneck clams

2 ears corn, shucked and cut into 2-inch lengths

3/4 cup dry white wine

2 teaspoons pimentón

Aleppo pepper

Handful fresh basil leaves, torn

Healthy drizzle of olive oil

1. In a large, heavy-bottomed pot, sweat the bacon over medium heat. Once it begins to render, about 2 minutes, add the garlic and sweat until translucent. Add the clams, corn and white wine, and stir in the pimentón. Increase the heat to high and cook, uncovered, for about 30 seconds, until the alcohol has evaporated. Reduce the heat to medium low, cover and steam until all the clams have opened and the corn is tender, 5 to 10 minutes. Discard any clams that don't open.

2. Serve in a large bowl with a sprinkle of Aleppo pepper, torn basil and a generous drizzle of fruity olive oil.

Each serving: 207 calories; 18 grams protein; 15 grams carbohydrates; 1 gram fiber; 8 grams fat; 2 grams saturated fat; 48 mg cholesterol; 4 grams sugar; 814 mg sodium.

QUESADILLAS STUFFED WITH GREENS AND FETA

Total time: 30 minutes

Servings: 4 to 6

Oil

1/3 cup minced onion

1 pound mixed cooking greens, such as kale, mustards and collards

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper

2 teaspoons minced garlic

1 cup diced feta cheese

1/4 pound low-moisture mozzarella, cut in small dice

12 corn tortillas

1. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet. Add the onion and cook until it softens and begins to color, 3 to 5 minutes.

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