Wednesday, 16 September 2009

Easy Can't-Be-Bothered Meals

Even the most enthusiastic Mum has days when the kitchen is the last place you'd like to spend time, and the idea of preparing a meal feels exhausting! I remember one day realising that I was the one preparing every single meal we ate and feeling quite daunted about the idea. And I love cooking, generally speaking.

This past week I've felt quite 'blah' about cooking anything. My very food oriented family continually ask 'what's for dinner tonight' and this week my answer has been "snot and snails ~ pick your own". This answer is always met with "awwww M-u-u-u-u-u-m". But they get the idea that nothing fancy is coming their way! My antidote to spending money on pre-prepared or take away meals is to have some really simple things that even I can get my head around when I really can't be bothered. In fact, I've probably blogged about this before. But given the way I'm feeling, I need to remind I'm reminding you too!

The past weekend, my simple meal was pasta, with sauted onion, garlic, bacon & mushrooms with cream as the sauce/moisture. Of course, in our house, we have gluten free and regular pasta going...but what's an extra saucepan?!

Last night I made a warm chicken salad...for three. That was pretty simple, as the only cooking required is for the chicken, everything else was just chopped and thrown into the bowl. I served that with some garlic bread I found in the bottom of the freezer.

A roast is always surprisingly fuss-free...especially if your children are of the age where they can peel and chop vegies. I don't do anything to the meat on lazy days. I just throw it in the oven and add the vegies at the appropriate time. On lazy days I also avoid making gravy. Ours is a gravox-free zone due to very discerning (aka fussy) tastebuds. I might get out the cranberry or apple sauce instead.

The other night I made Chicken Cacciatore thanks to a new recipe book for which I need to road test a couple of recipes to review. That was super simple and very tasty. The leftovers made a fantastic lunch, reheated in the microwave.

I'm sure most of you have recipes and ideas for really easy meals that require little effort. Post a comment and share yours with me!


Left-Handed Housewife said...

My favorite easy meal is boiling up a pot of linguine and microwaving a pack of Stouffers creamed spinach, then mixing the two together along with salt, pepper, a handful of parmesan and a pinch of nutmeg. It is a surprisingly low fat, satisfying meal.

If there's time for it, roasting a chicken is another simple affair.

I'm always looking for good, simple meals, too. Unfortunately, a lot of five minute meal recipes you find in magazines end up not being that great.

Good luck!


Tracy said...

Not that great and full of ingredients I don't normally have in my pantry!

The creamed spinach and pasta idea looks really yummy. I wonder if we have creamed spinach here?!

Crunchie's Mum said...

Omlettes are a favourite simple meal here. I fact we might have them tonight. I've just checked the fridge and there are close to 6 dozen eggs in there! The chooks are doing their spring thing and laying as fast as they can get into a spare laying box.

We have an omlette with salad and fresh bread, simple and satisfying.


Kristi in the Western Reserve said...

A very simple but not well know Hungarian meal which proves the whole is more than the sum of its parts is Rakott Krumpli, or stacked potatoes.

Boil six eggs and six large potatoes in the same pot. Remove. Cool. Slice.

Mix a pint of sour cream with enough milk to thin it to thin cream consistency. In a casserole dish put a layer of potato slices and a layer of egg slices (you can cruble the egg if you prefer) and salt and pepper to taste and pour some of the sauce on it. Repeat until all the eggs and potatoes are used up and the sauce is poured over.

Bake at least 30 minutes at 350 Fahrenheit..........

Serve with a green mixed salad.

Another simple Hungarian everyday recipe is made by boiling a pound of pasta of your favorite sort. (In the real recipe they would be small squares of noodle dough.) Mix with a pint of sour cream mixed with a pint of cottage cheese. Salt and pepper to taste. Warm in a slow oven for a half an hour.

Serve with some sort of salad. It could be lettuce, or Hungarian sweet and sour cucumber salad or sweet and sour tomato and onion salad.

Tracy said...

Thanks for your suggestions everyone. I daresay each of us eats very well even when we're feeling lazy! I'm going to be hoarding these ideas and trying them out.

Welcome Kristi :)