Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Who has time to cook from scratch every night?

I don't cook from scratch every night. Even if I wanted to, there's no way that I could pull that off.

Last night, I had dinner plans with a friend. We were high tailing it into town for some kid-free conversation. Still, my husband and the kids needed dinner. In a matter of minutes, I "made" a mild curry (which my kids proclaimed to be "the best ever"), brown rice and roasted butternut squash.

The curry was simply Stonehouse 27's Cashew & Cream cooking sauce + chicken + a bag of organic frozen peas + a hearty handful of roasted, unsalted cashews...tossed in a large saute pan and heated until the chicken was cooked through. Most supermarkets have already cooked brown rice in the freezer section. And cubes of butternut squash (yes, bought pre-cut) were simply roasted at 425 on a cookie sheet with a drizzle of olive oil + kosher salt + pepper + cumin + cinnamon + and chili powder for about 20 minutes, while I had a relaxing cup of coffee with another friend and five kiddos took a Spanish class in my living room. Amazing meal, very little effort, happy mom.

Busy day today... tonight was a similarly easy "homemade" meal. What can I say? With a lot going on and major Thanksgiving cooking on the horizon, I am not going to burn the candle at both ends this week before!

That is our dinner in the photo above. Not bad for a Tuesday night. The soft tacos were made with ground beef sauteed in Frontera's new Taco Skillet Sauce (which is so new that I can't find it on their website under "products"? But I can tell you that our local (Darien, CT) Whole Foods is definitely stocking it in the Mexican/Southwestern aisle. While I couldn't find a product link, I did manage to find a grocer wholesale sheet. So, if you want that for your local retailer, here it is.) + shredded cheese + sour cream + chunks of avocado. I meant to make cumin roasted cauliflower, but I forgot to turn the oven on...oh well.

The point of this post is that a well-stocked pantry or popping one or two simmer sauces, rubs, or similar into your shopping cart each week allows you to create amazing meals in minutes. So, no more "I tried your enchiladas and they were amazing but I haven't got time to cook like that every night!" The truth is, some nights neither do I!


  1. Ok. All I can say is: VERY lucky family that you cook them a fantastic meal on your way out the door;).

  2. Yea...I don't really have my family trained right. Or rather, I do hope they realize how lucky they are!


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