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How to Fake Summer Flavor for Dinner Tonight

March 6, 2014

How to Fake Summer Flavor for Dinner Tonight

March 6, 2014

To replicate the flavor of a grilled dinner without stepping outside, just turn on your broiler. This underused kitchen workhorse lets you prepare meals splatter-free, just like the oven, but it heats up quicker and cooks twice as fast. Its blast of direct heat seals in juices as it perfectly caramelizes the outside of meats, seafood, and vegetables for delicious dinners in a flash.

Broiled Shrimp Tacos

The broiler blisters corn tortillas and quickly cooks the shrimp for these tacos. Serve with plenty of sliced jalapenos and avocado, cilantro sprigs, and lime wedges.

12 6-inch corn tortillas
1 1/2 pounds large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 medium white onion, chopped (about 2 cups)
2 teaspoons safflower oil
1 tablespoon minced canned chipotles in adobo
1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
Assorted garnishes, such as sliced avocado, shredded red cabbage, cilantro sprigs, sour cream, lime wedges, and sliced jalapenos

1. Preheat broiler with rack 6 inches from heating element. Arrange tortillas in overlapping rows on a baking sheet. Broil until blistered in spots, about 1 minute. Flip and broil about 30 seconds more. Remove from broiler; immediately stack tortillas and wrap in a clean kitchen towel to soften and keep warm until ready to serve.

2. Toss shrimp with 1 cup onion, oil, chipotles, and salt. Transfer to a baking dish and broil, stirring a few times, until shrimp are pink and opaque, 6 to 8 minutes. Divide shrimp and remaining onion evenly among tortillas. Serve with assorted garnishes.

Related: 14 New, Lighter Comfort Food Ideas

Broiled Striped Bass with Cauliflower and Capers

Firm-fleshed fish like striped bass (or halibut or salmon) holds up under a broiler’s high heat. Broilers vary in heat intensity; move the rack to a lower position if the cauliflower or fish is browning too quickly, or to a higher rack if too slowly.

1 small head cauliflower (about 2 1/4 pounds), cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for serving
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
4 skin-on striped-bass fillets (each about 6 ounces)
2 tablespoons salt-packed capers, rinsed and drained
3 tablespoons golden raisins
2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
Mixed fresh herbs, such as parsley, tarragon, and chives

1. Preheat broiler with rack 6 inches from heating element. Place cauliflower on a rimmed baking sheet and brush with 2 tablespoons oil; season with salt and pepper. Spread in a single layer and broil until crisp-tender and golden brown in spots, 10 minutes.

2. Drizzle fish with remaining 1 tablespoon oil; season generously with salt and pepper. Place on top of cauliflower, skin side up, and add capers to sheet. Broil until fish is just opaque throughout, 5 to 7 minutes. Add raisins and broil just until plump and hot, about 30 seconds. Drizzle fish and vegetables with vinegar, and divide evenly among 4 plates. Serve sprinkled generously with herbs and drizzled with more oil.

Related: Delicious Desserts in 15 Minutes or Less

Broiled Bacon-Wrapped Chicken with Sweet Potatoes and Watercress

Basic boneless chicken breasts become an impressive entree when wrapped in smoky bacon and broiled with sweet potato slices.

2 medium sweet potatoes, sliced into 1/4-inch-thick rounds
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoon packed light-brown sugar
2 boneless, skinless chicken-breast halves (about 12 ounces total), each cut into 2 cutlets
4 slices bacon (about 4 ounces total)
1/2 medium red onion, cut into 8 wedges
4 cups watercress (from 1 to 2 bunches), thick stems removed
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon Champagne or white-wine vinegar

1. Preheat broiler with rack 6 inches from heating element. Place sweet potatoes on a rimmed baking sheet and toss with 2 tablespoons oil; season with salt and pepper. Spread in a single layer and sprinkle with brown sugar. Wrap each cutlet with a bacon slice; tuck onion between bacon and chicken. Arrange alongside potatoes on sheet, onion side up; season with salt and pepper.

2. Broil until chicken is cooked through and potatoes are tender, 8 to 10 minutes. Toss watercress with remaining 1 tablespoon oil and vinegar, and season with salt and pepper. Divide chicken, potatoes, and watercress evenly among 4 plates and serve.

Related: 47 Ways to Maximize Space in Your Kitchen

Broiled Spicy Pork and Pineapple

Colorful fruits and veggies get the same broiler suntan as boneless pork-loin chops for a Thai-inspired dish that’s on the table in just 30 minutes.

4 boneless pork-loin chops (each about 4 ounces and 1/2 inch thick)
1 bunch scallions (about 7), trimmed
2 tablespoons safflower oil
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 pineapple, peeled, cored, and sliced into 1/2-inch-thick rounds
1/8 teaspoon ground cayenne
2 teaspoons minced peeled fresh ginger (from a 1-inch piece)
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice (from 1 lime)
Steamed rice, preferably sticky, for serving
Thai chiles, thinly sliced, for serving (optional)

1. Preheat broiler with rack 4 inches from heating element. Place pork and scallions on a rimmed baking sheet and toss with 1 tablespoon oil; season with salt and pepper. Add pineapple to sheet, spreading all ingredients in a single layer. Combine cayenne and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a bowl; sprinkle evenly over pineapple.

2. Broil until pork is just cooked through, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer pork to a cutting board. Reserve accumulated juices in a bowl. Continue broiling scallions and pineapple until blistered in spots, 6 to 8 minutes (remove scallions earlier if blackening too much). Whisk ginger and lime juice into reserved juices. Slice pork; chop scallions and pineapple. Serve over rice with dressing and chiles.

More from Martha Stewart:
Quick, One-Pot Meal Ideas To Feed the Whole Family
Grilled Cheeese Recipes for Grown-Ups
22 Chicken Dinner Recipes in Less Than 30 Minutes

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