What’s For Dinner Tonight?
Parents who work are always looking for easy ways to feed the family. A friend of mine mentioned to me the other day that she was having difficulty deciding what to make for dinner. She put in a request that I should have a daily recipe on my website for moms who are frustrated about what to make for dinner.
This program was designed for those with the frustration of not being prepared for dinner time. You know when those adorable faces look at you at 4:30 or when you walk through the door after a hard day’s work and they say “I’m hungry!” “What’s for dinner?” and you have NO IDEA!! Does this sound familiar?
Of course this idea is not a new one. There are sites and books like Once a Month Cooking, and the whole industry of Personal Cheffing, that are dedicated to this idea. I know some people who use the once-a-month cooking plan, and it works great for them. For others though, it’s not so great, because the menus and recipes don’t fit into their tastes or dietary needs. (I’ll share more on this issue in another post.)
With my job as a Busy Mom, maintaining a household, working full-time and as an Independent Consultant, I offer workshops teaching others in the kitchen, and showing them how they can make ten meals at a time, always prepared specifically for family meal time and even entertaining. I’ve even offer Kids Cooking Workshops so the kids can learn how to participate in the kitchen. Cooking does not have to be a chore.
All of us are busy, no matter what our roles are. Five o’clock comes around faster than any other hour of the day. So, I hope this helps reduce your frustration when you hear those three words, “What’s For Dinner?.”
Quick Weeknight Meals
For some of you reading my post, this may be a refresher course from learning about the term Power Cooking Meals, for others it may be a whole new adventure.
Helpful Hints on Preparing:
- Clean out your freezer and refrigerator the day before planing your meals and shopping.
- Have a family meeting so everyone in your family can vote on what’s on the meal list.
- Make your full menu for ten meals- 5 meals x 2. Keep in mind you will not have to cook all of the items on your menu ahead of time-only the foods that need a lot of preparation or that can be completed and frozen.(For example, if you are planning hamburgers on the grill, you only need to shape the burgers and freeze them.)
- Pull out all the recipes and cookbooks that you might need to use. Having a computer, it can really help to put your recipes in a file.
- Make your shopping list (using pencil). This will be your Master List. You will need to alter the quantity of many items on your list several times as you go through each recipe.
- Photocopy your final list to use for future meals.
After your list is completed:
- Browse your freezer and cupboards. Mark or even highlight any item you may already have before you go shopping.
- Before your shopping trip, clean off your counter tops and the kitchen table. You will need the space!
- Make sure you have enough containers for the meals you will be preparing. Gladware plastic works well. It really helps to have uniform size containers for storing foods in your freezer. They even sell them with color-coated lids so you can choose red for beef dishes, green for veggie dishes and blue for chicken dishes. For those items that can be stored in freezer bags, I recommend the Glad Fresh-protect freezer bags, and also the Fresh-protect storage bags for the refrigerator. They really do work the best!!!
To find great kitchen tools to make your cooking easier and faster, shop Noel’s Kitchen.
Check back frequently to learn more recipes, kitchen tips and more for creating your family meal times. Eating out is expensive….eating with family is priceless!
Teriyaki Meatloaf – serves 6
1 ½ pounds Ground Turkey
½ cup oats
¼ cup milk
½ cup finely chopped Carrot
½ cup finely chopped Onion
½ cup finely chopped Celery
½ cup Sugar
¼ cup Soy Sauce (low sodium)
In a mixing bowl, thoroughly mix all ingredients. Shape into two loaves, or place in mini-loaf pan. Preheat oven to 375◦, and bake loaves for 30-45 minutes. Allow to cool completely, wrap in aluminum foil, and place in freezer containers, or Glad Fresh Protect Freezer Bags.
To reheat, thaw overnight in refrigerator. Preheat oven to 375◦ and reheat in foil for 20-30 minutes.
*** May also be frozen before baking. To bake, Thaw overnight in refrigerator. Preheat oven to 375◦, and bake for 45-60 minutes.