I've lived on my own for a while, and cooked since I was small, but the work schedule I've had for the past few years has meant that I basically scrounged or got takeout during the week, and did big deal (read: too expensive and labor intensive for every day) cooking projects for fun on the weekend. This means I have some amazing recipes for things like polpettine stuffed with goat cheese and scallops in citrus buerre blanc, but I have no idea how to plan a week's worth of normal dinner menus. As of this past weekend I am now living in my first real grown-up apartment with someone (we decorated! we have a dining room table! and a dishwasher!) and working hours that give me plenty of time in the evening to cook, and having a real dinner together is something that is important to me. I would love to hear some mid-week go-to dinner menus/ideas that I can shamelessly steal and pass off as my own to impress my boyfriend. :)
I'd also love cookbook recommendations that fit the bill, as I've tended to gravitate towards ones that are pretty, fancy and impractical.