Sometimes entertaining your own family at home can be a challenge when you and/or your spouse is busy during the week. Quality family time has always been important to Ayesha and sitting around the dinner table is how she keeps it in her family’s schedule. Check out how Ayesha turns a rather simple weeknight menu into a boldly flavored spread.

Harissa-Spiced Chicken

“Smoky flavors have become a part of  my palette, and smoked paprika is a nice way to introduce that essence,” says Ayesha, who pairs it with harissa (a spicy Middle Eastern blend of chiles, cumin, and garlic) and chili powder to add kick to baked chicken thighs served over Roasted Red Pepper Rice.

Get the recipe: Harissa-Spiced Chicken

Braised Cabbage and Carrots

“My family loves the combo of cabbage and carrots in this dish. And seasonings like cumin make the vegetables exciting,” Ayesha says. “I can prepare all  the vegetables ahead and cook them just before dinner.”

Get the recipe: Braised Cabbage and Carrots

Kale, Halloumi, and Peach Salad

Salty prosciutto and Halloumi cheese (a slightly springy white cheese packed  in briny water), plus peaches and pecans, inspire the girls to eat this salad. Working olive oil into kale by hand tenderizes the leaves.

Get the recipe: Kale, Halloumi, and Peach Salad

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