The recipe for “Deep-Dish Spinach, Egg and Spaghetti Pie,” from Cooking.com, promotes itself as a “spaghetti frittata.” This notion appealed to me -- and what I got was a cheesy, rich, and satisfying dinner.

This meal was very easy to eat, with its crispy top and custardy center.

Notice the directions for this recipe allow you to assemble its components ahead of time. The pasta could be cooked and mixed with its sauce and cooled to room temperature. Your frozen spinach (I used frozen collards with great success) can thaw while it waits for you to be ready. Your cheeses -- Parmigiano-Reggiano and provolone -- can be grated and reserved.

Once you decide to put your puzzle pieces together, this meal cooks itself for an hour. It’s an indulgent celebration, perhaps, but you and your diners need not apologize for enjoying it so much.

And speaking of indulgences … why would I ever choose to make a pound cake?

Well, take a look at the recipe for “Blackberry-Swirl Pound Cake,” from the July/August 2010 issue of Everyday Food, and then take a look at the beautiful blackberries that are presently available to us in our markets. It’s a simple choice, really. My pound cake was wonderfully soft, with an edgy crust. And those tart/sweet blackberries! Brilliant.

I used my stand mixer to beat my batter, with ease and precision. I baked my cake for 1 hour 35 minutes. My young child liked this cake. We all enjoyed slices for a few days, until every crumb was gone. Do make this pound cake, before the berries are gone.

PRICES
Half & Half (1 pint) = $1.87
Frozen Collards (16 oz.) = $1.20
Provolone Cheese (6 oz.) = $1.07

RECIPES: your diners will know they’re special when you make them a spaghetti frittata and a pound cake streaked with blackberries
PREP TIMES:
the assembly of the deep-dish dinner can stretch out over the course of your day, then cook in an hour; the pound cake needs more than two hours of cooking and cooling before you can try to eat it
TASTES: the cheesy spaghetti pie has an egg-custard center and crispy top, layered with satisfying greens; the pound cake delivers both lightness (in its soft texture) and denseness (in its bite and its edgier crust), while tart/sweet blackberries give all they’ve got

Next time, I will cook an “Unbelievable Chicken Meatloaf,” from Recipezaar.com, along with the “French Potato Salad,” from Cuisinerecipes.com. See what happens with this meal when you come back to my site on Wednesday, August 4.