Share your meal time recipe tips

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Caligirl, Dec 13, 2008.

  1. Caligirl
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    Caligirl Oh yes it is too!

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    As long as we are on the subject, I would love to have a few more easy but healthy dinner ideas tucked away for reference.

    The difficulty with putting dinner on every night seems to me to be (1) ingredients at hand and (2) time.

    I've tried the crockpot but I must be doing it wrong because it never is as tasty as I hope.

    Anyway, if you have an easy meal to share - please do so! I will start with ....hmmm..... Tacos I guess. We don't make them very often but when we do I realize they are a nice change from routine that everyone likes well enough and you can make them pretty healthy with the toppings. The main item that isn't usually on hand is the shells, and if you want to really make it easy stock up on the spice packs to keep in the cupboard. But you can make your own spice mix too in a pinch, and that may even be healthier.

    Anyway, browning the meat (ground chicken or turkey is healthier but we usually use beef), grating cheese, chopping tomatoes and avocado - shredding lettuce, and a little sour cream on the side - You can put it together in about 15 minutes. The kids enjoy assembling their own. Corn tortillas are a nice change from a typical starch.

    Jazz me up baby, share a not-too-difficult healthy recipe....
     
  2. Skull Pilot
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    Skull Pilot Platinum Member

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    One of my favorite easy recipes.

    1 lb. of medium shrimp peeled and deveined (the most time consuming part of the recipe)
    1 bag washed baby spinach
    2 medium or 3-4 small red potatoes skin on cubed 1/2 in pieces or so
    4oz crumbled feta

    Oven at 375-400

    On a cookie sheet spread aluminum foil. Pieces long enough to make a pouch to enclose all the ingredients.

    Spray olive oil on the foil. Put spinach potatoes and shrimp on top season with black and red pepper. Wrap all of it up in the foil pouch and seal edges.

    Bake for 40-45 minutes until potatoes are tender. Carefully open pouch and sprinkle the feta on.

    Serve and enjoy with a nice glass of Riesling.
     
  3. Annie
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    Annie Diamond Member

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    I love my Crock Pots, I have 3. It's usually important to sear the meat on stovetop before putting in crockpot, looks and tastes much better. Don't go overboard on the liquids, can always add some when you get home.

    flour with a pinch of salt & pepper
    Stew meat
    fingerling potatoes
    baby carrots
    bag of frozen corn, (I usually use the yellow for color)
    celery
    onions
    red wine
    low sodium beef broth
    salt, pepper, bay leaf

    cut off any visible fat from meat, place in large zipper bag with flour mixture. Shake. Lift the cubes out, shaking off excess and brown in hot oil. In the bottom of the crockpot place the vegetables, place seared meat on top of them. A bit of salt and pepper, add the bay leaf. Put about a cup of red wine over, then enough beef broth to cover. I usually set at low and leave it for 6-8 hours. If need to thicken the gravy, I shake some flour and cold water in a jar then turn the cooker up to high for another 45 minutes to an hour.

    Pick up some nice bread and prepared salad and you can read something while the gravy thickens. ;)
     
  4. random3434
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    random3434 Senior Member

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    OK Friends. I need your help! As most of you know, I am a vegetarian. But....my fiancee is a big ole meat eater! I would like to make him a pot roast, he says he loves it. I have no idea how to do it, and figure you all would have some good recipies for it. Thanks!
     
  5. Annie
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    Annie Diamond Member

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    I do the pot roasts in the crockpot, pretty close to same recipe. Though I'd do larger vegetables for presentation reasons. Once again, remove visible fat, dredge with seasoned flour and sear well. Vegetables in bottom, then meat, then season, then add liquid not quite to the top. Make gravy at the end. With pot roast might be easier to remove meat and vegetables, then make the gravy on stovetop, getting rid of any excess grease.
     
  6. random3434
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    random3434 Senior Member

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    What? :confused:

    Hon, I wouldn't even know what kind of meat to buy! Remember, pretend I'm a 10 year old you are teaching how to cook for the first time. Plus, I don't have a crock pot.......:redface:
     
  7. PoliticalChic
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    PoliticalChic Diamond Member

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    This is a problem that plagued me when my children were of eating age. Meal planning seemed overwhelming.

    Now after many years, it doesn't seem as bad. The key is to have the basic ingredients on hand.

    * Have a well stocked spice rack. Using the right spice makes all the difference.
    * Always have ground beef, pork chops, skinless boneless chicken breast.
    * Have some vegetables like broccoli, onions, garlic, bell pepper, string beans on hand.

    Over the years I have accumulated a couple of binders full of recipes.

    The crockpot is great, but like Annie said if you are using meat, sear the meat or if it is ground, completely brown it, drain and then add to the crockpot. It is a pain in the beginning because it is an extra step, although for the below recipe, I don't have to brown it.

    If doable, make 2 of certain dishes and then freeze (i.e. meatloaf) so when you don't have time, you can just reheat and make a quick sidedish.

    Here are some recipes that we like and have made often:

    BTW, most of these are from Allrecipes. I'm a good cook, just not a creative one.

    Sweet & Sour Meatballs in Slow Cooker
    2 lbs ground beef
    1 egg
    1 onion, chopped
    1 pinch salt
    1 (12 fluid ounce) can or bottle chili sauce
    2 teaspoons lemon juice

    1. In a large bowl, combine beef, egg onion and salt. Mix together, then shape into little balls.
    2. In a slow cooker, combine chili sauce, lemon juice and grape jelly. Stir in meatballs and cook on high for 4 -6 hours (double the time on low).

    I serve with cooked white rice.

    Rempel Family Meatloaf (I double recipe to make 2 loaves)

    1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
    1/2 cup curshed buttery round crackers
    3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
    1 (1 oz) package dry onion soup mix
    2 eggs, beaten
    1/4 cup ketchup
    2 tablespoons steak sauce

    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

    2. Stir the ground beef, crushed crackers, Cheddar cheese, and onion soup mix in a large bowl until well combined.

    3. Whisk the eggs, ketchup, and steak sauce in a separate bowl until smooth.

    4. Mix the eggs into the meat until evenly combined, if the mixture seems too dry, add a little water.

    5. Press into a 9x5 inch loaf pan.

    6. Bake in preheated oven until the meatloaf reaches 160 degrees F (71 degrees C) and is no longer pink in the center, 45 to 60 minutes.

    Golden Pork Chops
    6 pork chops
    1/4 teaspoon seasoned salt
    1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    1 onion, chopped
    1/2 cup fresh sliced mushrooms
    2 (10.75 ounce) cans condensed golden mushroom soup

    Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).

    Rinse pork chops, pat dry and place them in a 9x13 inch baking dish.

    In a separate small bowl, combine the onion, mushrooms and soup. Mix together well and spoon over the chops.

    Cover and bake at 375 degrees F (190 degrees C) for 45 minutes, then uncover and bake for 15 more minutes. (Note: Time could be less or more depending on the thickness of the chops.) Pork chops are done when their internal temperature has reached 160 degrees F (70 degrees C).

    Easy Teriyaki Chops

    1/2 cup soy sauce
    2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
    2 teaspoons honey
    2 teaspoons garlic powder
    4 pork chops

    DIRECTIONS
    In a shallow dish, combine the soy sauce, vinegar, honey and garlic powder. Place chops in dish, and turn to coat. Cover, and marinate for 2 to 4 hours in the refrigerator.
    Preheat grill to high heat, and lightly oil grate.
    Grill steaks 5 to 8 minutes per side, or to desired doneness.

    This is a Chinese dish and one of my favorites:

    Szechuan Green String Beans (I double this one too!)

    15 min | 10 min prep

    SERVES 2

    2 cups cooking oil, plus
    1 tablespoon cooking oil
    3/4 lb string bean, trimmed and cleaned
    1 tablespoon minced garlic
    2 tablespoons ground pork
    2 tablespoons soy sauce
    1/2 tablespoon sherry wine
    1/2 tablespoon sugar
    4 tablespoons chicken broth
    1/2 tablespoon sesame oil

    Steam the beans until tender/crisp.

    Add the beans, garlic, minced pork, soy sauce, sherry, sugar and broth.
    Add the sesame oil and scallion, swirling to heat through.
    Serve.
    Our beans are extremely crisp, which makes all the difference

    My favorite vegetable is probably broccoli.

    Broccoli Sauteed with Garlic
    6 cloves of garlic sliced
    4 cups of broccoli florettes
    salt
    1 tablespoon of olive oil
    1/4 cup of water

    On medium heat,
    Sautee garlic in oil till lightly browned. Add broccoli florettes. Toss with wooden spoon for 2-3 minutes. Carefully add water. Cover pan. Let broccoli steam until tender/crisp.
    Add salt.
     
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2008
  8. PoliticalChic
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    PoliticalChic Diamond Member

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    I believe a chuck roast would be good since it has a lot of marbling, but I guess it depends on his preference. If you go with a leaner meat, it won't be as tender.
     
  9. Annie
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    Annie Diamond Member

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    Chuck Roast are good, but I'm tending more towards lower cholesterol and sodium. Eye of Round is very lean and makes a good slow cooked roast.

    Echo, anything you can do in a crock pot, you can do in good sized Dutch oven. You have to watch the liquid a bit more.
     
  10. PoliticalChic
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    PoliticalChic Diamond Member

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    Yeah, we do leaner cuts here as well. Your recipe sounds good. I prefer beef stew though and that comes out awesomely in the slowcooker.
     
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2008

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