Tag Archives: Grocery advice

New Fusion Speed Meal Cooking

What is Speed Meal Cooking? 

Well to me it means using good quality prepared ingredients along with some fresh ingredients to prepare meals that are nutritious and delish that, (and here’s the important part), your hubby and picky-little or big eaters will enjoy without sighs and the hiding of things under their plates. They are also meals that will have your family asking for seconds. Does this sound impossible? Well it’s not as evidenced by Rachel Ray & Sandra Lees great sucess on the Food Network and their best selling cookbooks. 

Yes, I’m a Chef and most Chefs stick their nose up in the air when talking about prepared ingredients. I’m not sure why, but I think it may be culianryily correct as dictated by big name Chef’ s who are proponent of hand making everything…well that’s all well and good for a Chef who has a slew of sous chefs to do all their shopping, chopping and prep work.

For us mere mortals, THAT is the impossible task and one that keeps most women out of the kitchen, those unrealistic expectations…

Sandra Lee is a Cordon Bleu trained Chef who said that when she was in culinary school she learned all the long preparation techniques and wondered why spend hours to do something that has been “done” for you by a high quality pre-preparation products.

Pre-preparation ingredients are not a bad word ladies…if you choose carefully and read the ingredients, you can choose healthy prepared ingredients that are good for your family and make your life easier.

Shake off the shackles of culinary snobbery and reap the bennies of time in the kitchen by using all the culinary tools at your disposal.

Utilize Local Farmers 

Certainly use local ingredients in season when you can, support local growers and frequent you local Farmers Markets on Saturdays. They are a great family trip, it helps get the kiddies involved in the prepartation of your family meals. The added bonus is that it helps you to connect with your community and support local small businesses.

It’s fun and educational!

It is an educational and recreational trip for your family and gives them an opportunity to learn about the ingredients by talking to the producers of the products you buy. Studies have shown that kids will eat more when they are involved in the process. That means not only in the prep work and cooking, but in the choosing of the meals and ingredients!

I know, I know,  you have visions of the mess the ktichen will be with the kiddos helping! Think of it as creating a new tradition, spending time with your kids is a treasure!! My boys loved helping in the kitchen when they were little.  It made great memories! It also taught my children repsonsibility because they were required to help clean-up and made them think about the process. It teaches them math and science  all good things right?

Go out and make it a great day!

Crock Pot Bolognese Pasta Sauce 

Serves 4

8 oz. of Penne Pasta cooked according to package (2 2/3 cups)

2 cups frozen diced carrots

1 cup medium dice onions

1 cup medium diced celery

1 medium chopped red bell pepper (these are sweeter than green bell peppers)

2 minced garlic cloves

2 teaspoons italian seasoning

1 teaspoon thyme

2 bay leaves

1/4 teaspoon fennel seeds or anise seeds

2 cups beef stock

1/2 cup red wine

1 pound ground turkey or ground beef

1 pound ground pork

1 (28 oz italian crushed tomatoes)

Salt & Pepper to taste

Sugar to taste

Place all the ingredients into a 5 qt crock pot and cook LOW for 8 hours. Stir before serving to break up the meat.

Serve over Penne Pasta.

Freeze the leftover sauce!

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Baked Parmesan Salisbury Steak with Potatoes

 

Delicious Easy Meal

Delicious Easy Meal

Ingredients 

  • 1 to 1  1/4 pounds  lean ground beef or ground Turkey or a combination of the two
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon seasoned salt
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder-not salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder-not salt
  • 3 tablespoons fine dry bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese-from the green can is OK
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 large egg, slightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons grated onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped Spinach drained & squeezed very dry-(you can use fresh, just chop it and add to meat mixture)
  • 1 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup thinly sliced mushrooms- a 4oz.can is fine
  • 1 cup beef/chicken or veggie broth
  • 1 can condensed cream of mushrooms
  • 2 cups of shredded hash brown potatoes-can use frozen potatoe o’brien or country 
  • 1 cup Frenches Fried Onions- For topping- At Aldi’s I get a cheddar cheese flavor that is delish!
  • 1 tablespoon dry red wine, optional

Directions 

  1. Pre-Heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Grease a 8×8 inch oven safe pan with oil.
  3. Pour shredded potatoes in the bottom of the greased pan(the ones in the deli or frozen work just fine)
  4. Combine ground meat of choice, pepper, salt, seasoned salt, garlic & onion powder, grated onion,chopped spinach, 1/4 cup parmesan and bread crumbs. 
  5. Shape into 4 oval patties.
  6. Place patties over the potatoes in the 8×8 in pan.
  7. Mix the wine(optional), broth & mushroom soup & mushrooms. Mix until blended.
  8. Pour over patties and potatoes and cover tightly with foil.
  9. Bake until meat is done through approximately 30 minutes; make sure the meat registers at least 180 degrees with a meat thermometer.
  10. Remove foil from pan and sprinkle the other 1/4 cup of parmesan cheese, Frenches fried onions over the top and cook uncovered an addtional 10 minutes.
  11. Serve with a fresh green salad or steamed broccoli
  12. DELISH!!
  13. This dish can be made ahead and frozen in an appropriate baking dish that is made for freezer to oven baking. Thaw completely before baking OR add an approximately additional 40 minutes to baking time to recipe baking time. Times will vary depending on your make & model of oven and whether it is calibrated correctly

SHOPPING LIST:

Copy & paste into a word document for a ready made shopping list.

  • 1 to 1  1/4 pounds  lean ground beef or ground Turkey or a combination of the two
  • 3 tablespoons fine dry bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese-from the green can is OK
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 large egg, slightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons grated onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped Spinach drained & squeezed very dry-(you can use fresh, just chop it and add to meat mixture)
  • 1 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup thinly sliced mushrooms- a 4oz.can is fine
  • 1 cup beef/chicken or veggie broth
  • 1 can condensed cream of mushrooms
  • 2 cups of shredded hash brown potatoes-can use frozen potatoe o’brien or country 
  • 1 cup Frenches Fried Onions- For topping- At Aldi’s I get a cheddar cheese flavor that is delish!
  • 1 tablespoon dry red wine, optional
  • PANTRY

    Make a list of things that you use to cook with frequently and make them pantry items

  • 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon seasoned salt
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder-not salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder-not salt
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 large egg, slightly beaten

  • RECIPE SUGGESTIONS:
    For the meat use either all ground chuck which has a better beefier flavor or ground turkey.
    Frozen ground turkey is usually 1/2 the cost per pound as fresh and it works just as well
    For a change mix beef with Turkey for a lower cholesterol content and to make the meal a little more inexpensive
    POTATOES:
    I use frozen Ore Ida hash browns, you can use the Ore Ida potato chunks or O Brien Potatoes
    You can use the shredded potatoes found in the deli/dairy section.
    SPINACH:
    A 10 ounce frozen box works just fine here.
    Fresh spinach can be used without cooking, just chop fresh and put it into the meat mixture.
    MUSHROOMS:
    Fresh mushrooms are the best and most flavorful due to a form of natural occuring monosodium glutamate.
    a 4 ounce can of mushrooms is a great substitution.
    PARMESAN CHEESE:
    You can use the green can!
    Substitute grated romano, asiago or your favorite cheddar cheese.
    BROTH:
    Veggie broth or chicken broth can be used as well as a boullion cube with water.

    The Cooking Studio Online Blog

    Welcome to The Cooking Studio Online! I’m a Chef with 30 years of culinary experience. I have had several questions about my career as a Personal Chef, owner of a Meal Assembly Business (I’m in a 12 step MAK program to free myself from the industry!)my experience in developing menus, my test kitchen and my experience as a Corporate Executive Chef. I have been through some harrowing experiences in my day, but my foray into Bankruptcy Court was indeed the most harrowing and devastating experience so far.

    I would be happy to answer any question EXCEPT for my experience as a Meal Assembly Kitchen owner…this is a meals assembly kitchen free zone, there are other places where you can get those questions asked and answered, this is not one of them, sorry. My advice is to go to http://www.mealassemblywatch.com or unhappyfranchisee.com to find answers and ask questions.

    This is a place where I will do my professional best to answer any cooking questions I can and give you a place to share your recipes, decorating and meal ideas.

    Food is my passion and my creative outlet.

    Welcome new friends! Ask away!

    Chef Kadie