Saturday, October 15, 2011

Keep it Simple for a 5 min. Meal


Are you tired of eating bad take-out foods all the time? Me too. I stopped cooking a lot over the last few years because my life was so crazy that I didn't have the time to keep up with the grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning up, but lately I have been home and trying to ease back into cooking more regularly.

Cooking a full meal can be time consuming if you add up the time you spend going to the store to get the groceries and loading up the car and unloading the groceries and then you have the prep time of the food, then the cooking of the food and once that's all done you have to wash the dishes and put things away. Are you getting tired just reading this? Yeah I know, that's why I put cooking on the back burner over the past few years.

But I am trying to bring easy cooking back. You don't have to spend loads of time in the kitchen if you cook smart. Lately I have been getting into shopping at Farmer's Markets because there are no check out lines and things are fresh, fresh, fresh.

I went a bit nuts and bought everything that looked good but you have to think about what you will be able to cook before it goes bad. That's something I need to work on. Sometimes I plan to make a whole bunch of things but then I get busy, or tired or not in the mood to eat those things so what I have learned is Simplicity is the answer. KEEP IT SIMPLE and you will be able to cook more.

Look at the picture above... that was a 5 minute meal. Asparagus is the one vegetable that doesn't require a whole lot of prep time. All you have to do is whack off the stems at the end that are tough and give them a quick wash and then you can boil them or grill them or even roast them. It takes less than 5 minutes to do the whole thing if you cook them in a grill pan.

The meat, that was a veal cutlet that I short cutted by only dusting with spice infused flour. I didn't even bother to do a full breading. You can add whatever spices you like, parsley, basil, paprika, garlic etc. The trick to making it all taste like restaurant style is really easy. Just grab a lemon and squeeze it on the whole thing and drizzle some olive oil over it when you plate it. You can also add balsamic vinegar. Those are the tricks of the restaurant trade... Drizzle something over it and it adds flavour and pizazz. EASY Peasy as Jamie Oliver says.

This whole thing took about 5 minutes and because I cooked it in one grill pan there wasn't a huge clean up involved either. You can add an easy tomato, cucumber salad using the same olive oil and lemon or vinegar and you have a complete meal. If you like carbs just add a piece of good toasted bread to it.

So you see it can be done. Get a good grill pan and get cooking.

These are a couple of my essential tools to have in your kitchen to make it easy.

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