Easy Recipes For All Skill Levels
It can be intimidating when we are faced with a long recipe that includes many ingredients. If some of the ingredients are unfamiliar, it's even more daunting. Complicated recipes can be wonderful and rewarding to prepare, but sometimes we just want to keep it simple. The solution is to find recipes that have fewer than five or six ingredients. For our purposes, simple ingredients, such as water and common seasonings, are included. Some of today's recipes also include precooked ingredients, such as leftover meats, or prepared, canned, jarred or frozen foods.
You can do some planning that will make quick meals easy to prepare. When you have leftover meats, cut it into bite size pieces and store it in labeled plastic bags, ready to add to soups and casseroles. Keep a variety of frozen vegetables on hand because they are nice to add to soups instead of fresh chopped vegetables, to shorten preparation time. Build up a shelf of spices and dried herbs that you and your family really like to add spark and a personal touch to your cooking.
Some packaged foods in the pantry and refrigerator can make cooking simpler. Here's my short list:
- A good brand of low sodium broth
- Jars of a favorite salsa
- Plenty of canned tomatoes in all forms (sauce, diced, pureed, etc.)
- Cans of tuna
Long recipes can be made simpler by judicious use of these ingredients. For instance, instead of chopping many different vegetables, frozen mixed vegetables can be used instead. I especially like frozen chopped onions and peppers. These few items shorten preparation and cooking time. A good example is a fast soup, made by using that canned broth, frozen vegetables, canned beans and some of your leftover meat. Simply dump it all in a pot, season it to taste and heat it up. The last minute addition of some fresh parsley gives it a homemade aroma and flavor.
In addition to quick, easy preparation and cooking, good nutrition and low calorie choices are what we want. Today we're going to keep it simple and cook things that appeal to everyone. We've included main dishes, side dishes and desserts. Calorie Count members contributed these creative, appealing, quick and easy dishes.