7.16.2008

Fast Food

Ok, first, I just want to say thanks for all your memories, that was a lot of fun, and has really brought back a lot that I'd forgotten about. And Mom--you're allowed to comment again. I really didn't mean to forbid you in the first place, I was just joking. I love hearing all your favorite stories.

On to other things: I have a confession to make. I am not a very good cook. I mean, I can really follow a recipe well, but as for coming up with things on my own--not so good, not so good. So if I decide what I want to make early enough, we usually end up with a pretty good meal, which I like. However, if I don't decide what to make, we just end up eating cereal or sandwiches or spaghettios or pastaroni... The thing is, most of my meals require chicken to be cooked and cut up, which takes a while, plus the actual meal prep, so by the end of the day, I'm too tired to put a real meal together. So my question for you is this:


What are your favorite quick and easy meals? The ones you make when you're running out of time, but still want a decent dinner to eat as a family?

I'm wanting to add some new stuff to our menu, so any help you can give will be much appreciated. Thanks in advance.

P.S.  Yes, I did just discover the "compose" tab... silly me, and I thought I knew what I was doing before!  All of the new options... wowsers!

10 comments:

Tannie Datwyler said...

I have some good recipes, so remind me that I need to give you some. I'm rushing off somewhere, but I read your comment and had to laugh. Yes, I knew we would fight over the cutest redhead title. In truth, Breanne is WAY more red than Claire. Claire is more strawberry blonde, so she can have that title and Breanne can have the true redhead title. It just doesn't sound good to say, "I have the cutest strawberry blonde in the world!" Not as much ring. I laughed about the nursery thing. . . thanks for the warning. Did you get that e-mail I sent you?

Shi said...

Spaghetti is a pretty easy and quick thing to do.... but I am also a big fan of the frozen lasagnas and stuff like that... frozen pizza.... chicken voila.... that is a good meal... and it has all of the food groups, bonus Audrey will eat the brocolli in it... and sorry about my spelling... I can't really think straight right now.

gilian said...

My list of quick meals:

Hamburger gravy with mashed potatoes
Sloppy joes
Tacos
Chicken, rice, & peas
Hamburger, rice & peas
Breakfast for dinner
Hamburger Helper lasagna
Teriyaki chicken with rice
Wheat tortillas with chili and cheese
Navajo tacos
Spaghetti--pasta with ragu and some hamburger
Meatloaf or meatballs

I can give you the directions, but I think you can guess what most of the ingredients are...

Aliese Fry said...

Oh, I have lots of these....

LIME CHICKEN WRAPS
INGREDIENTS

1 1/2 pounds Foster Farms Breast Tenders
1/8 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 lime, juiced
1 teaspoon white sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 green onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
10 (6 inch) flour tortillas
1 tomato, diced
1/4 cup shredded lettuce
1/4 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1/4 cup salsa

DIRECTIONS
1. Saute chicken in a medium saucepan over medium high heat for about 20 minutes. Add vinegar, lime juice, sugar, salt, pepper, green onion, garlic and oregano. Simmer for an extra 10 minutes.

2. Heat an iron skillet over medium heat. Place a tortilla in the pan, warm, and turn over to heat the other side. Repeat with remaining tortillas. Serve lime chicken mixture in warm tortillas topped with tomato, lettuce, cheese and salsa.

Santa Rosa Salad --AWESOME AS LEFTOVERS--
• 1 Box seasoned long grain and wild rice mix (like Uncle Ben’s)
• Juice of 1 lemon
• 3 Chicken breast halves, cooked and diced
• 4 Green onions, chopped
• 1 Red bell pepper, diced
• 3 oz. Chinese pea pods, ends removed
• 2 Medium avocados, diced
• 1 C. Chopped pecans, toasted
• Lettuce leaves for garnish, red leaf looks nice
Dressing:
• 2 Cloves garlic, minced
• 1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
• 1/2 tsp. Salt
• 1/4 tsp. Sugar
• 1/4 tsp. Pepper
• 1/3 C. Seasoned rice vinegar
• 1/2 C. Vegetable oil
Combine dressing in blender. Cover and refrigerate. Cook rice according to package directions. Mix with all salad ingredients except avocados and pecans. Combine with dressing and refrigerate 2-4 hours or up to 24 hours. Before serving add avocados and pecans and garnish with lettuce leaves.

Benihana's Fried Rice
1 c Uncooked rice
5 T Butter
1 c Chopped onion
1 c Chopped carrots
2/3 c Chopped scallions
3 T Sesame seeds
5 Eggs
5 T Soy sauce
Salt
Pepper
Cook rice according to package directions. In a large skillet melt butter. Add onions, carrots and scallions. Saute until carrots are translucent. Set aside. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Place sesame seeds in a shallow pan. Bake until golden brown (10 to 15 minutes), shaking pan occasionally for even color. Lightly grease another skillet. Beat eggs. Pour into hot skillet. Cook as you would scrambled eggs. Combine rice, vegetables, sesame seeds and eggs. Add soy sauce. Stir. Salt and pepper to taste.

Boston Market Chicken
1/4 cup canola oil
1 Tbl. honey
1 Tbl. lime juice
1/4 tsp. paprika
4 chicken breast halves, washed and patted dry
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a small bowl, combine canola oil, honey, lime juice, and paprika. Place chicken, skin side up, in a 7X11 inch baking dish. Apply mixture to chicken pieces in a single layer. Bake in oven for
35−40 minutes, basting every 8−10 minutes, until well browned and juices run clear when you cut into the thickest part of the chicken. Remove from oven. Cover with foil for 15 minutes. This softens the chicken and keeps it hot until served. Serves four.

Easy Alfredo Sauce
8 oz. cream cheese
3/4 c. grated parmesan cheese
1/2 c. butter
1 c. milk
In sauce pan, whisk together cream cheese, parm. cheese, butter, and milk over low heat smooth. Heat 'til thick, stirring often. Serve over noodles with chicken or sauteed mushrooms.

Crock Pot Ribs--GREAT ON SUNDAYS
2 cans tomato sauce
1 c. brown sugar
2 tsp. vinegar
2 Tbp. Worcestershire sauce
**Favorite seasoning (I use a package of french onion soup mix)
6+ beef or pork ribs
Combine all ingredients in crock pot to make sauce. Add ribs, cover and cook on high for at least 4 hours.

I'm also going to suggest my FAVORITE cook book--seriously worth every CENT!!!! It's called Rachael Ray Top 30 30-Minute Meals KIDS FOOD. The ISBN# is: 1-891105-22-1. I've tried all but maybe five recipes in the entire book and they're fabulous, quick cooking and great for picky eaters. You should definitely look into it. I HIGHLY suggest the Supreme Pizza Pasta Salad, Super Stuffed potatoes with the Works, and Fake-Baked Ziti.

Colby and Meredith said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Colby and Meredith said...

Let's see, quick and easy... When I'm in a real hurry to get dinner on the table, I will use tuna fish rather than chicken because it is quicker. Here are some ideas:

-Tuna Melts
-Tuna Casserole (pasta, tuna fish, cheese, cream of chicken soup)
-Bean Burritos (obviously no tuna)
-Veggie stirfry over rice

Kristen said...

My family used to rotate Sunday dinners so we all got a turn. Which meant that every time my brother cooked we had the same thing. It's the only thing he knew how to make. And none of us ever complained. It's scrumtrelescent.

Let's call it...

Cheesey Chicken & Stuff

-Preheat oven to 375
-Lay thawed chicken breasts in the bottom of a glass oven dish.
-Cover the chicken with cheddar slices (or any cheese, I guess).
-Spread one can of cream of chicken mixed with a glop of mayo, a splash of milk, and some salt and pepper over the cheese.
-Empty one packet of Stove Top on the top. Melt a couple tablespoons of butter and drizzle over the dry stuffing.
-Stick it in the oven for about 35 minutes.

It takes literally two minutes to assemble, and you can make it ahead of time and keep it in the fridge until you're ready to use it. We usually serve with green beans - it's pretty much the perfect combo.

Stephanie Oelkers said...

It's so funny that you asked this, because we've been trying to find the same thing! The thing that I've figured out is when I do "cook," I'll make extra and freeze it down. Anyway I have some stuff to share!

Veggie Stir Fry (serves 1)
1 pkg Ramen noodles (I like oriental)
1 c. frozen stir fry veggies (always good to have around)
2 tsp. olive oil
Soy sauce

Cook noodles according to directions. Saute vegetables in oil until tender. Mix vegetables, noodles, soy sauce, and half the ramen seasoning packet together. Eat...

Vegetable Frittata (we've been eating a lot of eggs because they are cheap, cook quickly, and I've discovered that Ben loves them)

Beat two eggs per person with a little milk. Heat skillet with sprayed with Pam. Pour in eggs. Add desired amount of vegetables, frozen or fresh (I use frozen stir fry vegetables again... especially one with asparagus). Push the egg/vegetables toward the center of the pan, so that the uncooked eggs hit the hot pan. Keep doing this until the vegetables are tender and there is no more liquid. Turn off/lower heat and sprinkle with cheese. Cover until cheese is melted. The eggs should be all one "piece." Cut and serve.

On this note, we really like breakfast for dinner... pancakes, waffles, french toast, are always really fast and easy.

Quesadillas

Spray frying pan (or electric griddle) with Pam. Place tortilla in pan, cover with cheese, cover with another tortilla. Serve with guacamole (see recipe below), sour cream and salsa. If we're really hungry I'll make cilantro-lime rice too. Cook rice (2 cups), and add 1 bunch finely chopped cilantro and the juice of 2 limes. Fluff.

Guacamole
Mash three ripe avocados. Season with cumin, chili powder, salt and lime juice. I don't have measurements, because I go by taste, but less chili powder than anything else and don't skimp on the cumin or lime juice.

Chicken Tortilla Soup (My FAVORITE)
1 lb. chicken breast, cut into pieces and cooked(OR for faster results, use 2 cans chicken, drained)
4 cups chicken broth (I use bouillon cubes)
1 large can diced tomatoes with chilis (don't drain)
1 can Black Beans, drained
Frozen Corn (as much or little as you want)
1/4 c. Taco Seasoning
Cilantro

Throw everything in a large pot. Bring to boil and then reduce to simmer. If too spicy, add more water, if too watered down at more broth/taco seasoning. Simmer about 20 minutes. Serve with tortilla chips and cheese. I make ours spicier (for Bill) and then cool mine down with sour cream. This recipe gets BETTER the longer it sits, so leftovers are awesome and it freezes REALLY well. I usualy make a double batch.

Another thing I really like are the frozen Mrs. T's pierogies. Boil them and then serve them with butter and sour cream. When I'm motivated, I'll boil them and then throw them in the frying pan with butter and onions. SOOOO good.

Baked potatoes are always really easy and then you can just top them with whatever you have in your fridge. We like to steam some type of veggies and eat on them with cheese. Or if we have leftover ham, I'll cube it. Anytype of leftover meat goes good on them. Potatoes are cheap, easy and filling.

Stephanie Oelkers said...

One more... Bill and Ben love these

BBQ Cups
1 pkg. Biscuits/Croissants
1 lb. ground beef
your favorite BBQ sauce (we like anything famous dave's)
cheese for sprinkling

Brown ground beef. Add desired amount of BBQ sauce (make it as saucy as you want). Press biscuits/croissants into greased muffin pans. Fill with BBQ beef mixture. Bake according to biscuit/croissant directions, or until golden. Sprinkle with cheese.

Anna said...

I have some quick meals, but I won't post them all here right now I'll try to remember to email them to you.

But generally some good ideas are:
-take an hour or so one day and cook and cut up chicken and freeze it in quart size bags to use in the future--my mom used to do that and then she'd use it for things like Hawaiian Haystacks (on of my favorite quick meals ever!)

-when you make a real dinner, make two and freeze one for later (note: when i did this with enchiladas I did it two ways -- freezing the filling and freezing prerolled enchiladas, definitely better with freezing the filling and rolling them up the day you want then. that enchilada recipe is on my blog).

-the other day my friend Helena took a frozen cheese pizza, topped it with some peppers and olives and maybe even mushrooms. voila, veggie pizza. she added a salad and there we had it: quick and health.


so there you go. I think there are some recipes on my blog. they are tagged "recipes" so you can find them fairly easily by clicking on recipes in the blog cloud