Time Saving Kitchen Tips

Happy Valentines Day!

Well, there are no desert recipes today, look at to our recipe box for those, but here is some practical information you can use in the kitchen.

We have all heard that we should consume less fast food and more real food. Of course the fast food industry is staying the course, and always will try to coax us in the door. But, as a whole, our subconscious drive is becoming less and less susceptible to the appeal of the golden arches or the charm of the Colonel’s smile. We know that eating fast food appeals to our emotions and contributes to our sense of comfort, and there are many reasons for this including the amounts of fats, sugars and carbs typically found in the “foods”. We could speculate and even verify that there are many other reasons we crave the quick fix of fast food, such as chemicals that affect neurotransmitters and hormone levels. Remember how in the movie “Super Size Me”, Morgan Spurlock was completely addicted to Micky-D’s even thought he felt horrible after eating it?

Well, there are many reasons that we want those fooVintage heart.ds, the top 7 reasons are as follows..

They’re quick.
They’re easy to get to.
People like the taste.
They’re inexpensive (not counting the cumulative toll on your health).
People claim to be too busy to cook.
It’s a “treat”.
People don’t like to prepare food.
I’ll stop here. But basically, people stray towards these foods (and really I do hesitate to call the foods since a true food nourishes the body) mainly because they are quick, easy and monetarily inexpensive. The whole thing about it tasting good doesn’t make sense to me since all real food should taste good if it is prepared well. So if these top reasons are our “need” for fast food, how can we transform the circumstances that lead us to the front doors of these establishments (since transformation is the only way something can sustainably change)? And unless you have been living under a rock, you know that eating nutrient dense foods is one of the top ways of staying healthy. So, how can we make it easier?

A dear friend recently gave me a Mother Earth News magazine, and there was a great article in it that I thought had great information on how to save time in the kitchen. So if you want to change the circumstances that lead you astray, try the following tips:

Batch-Process Produce. Take a few minutes when you get home from the market to rinse, chop and properly store fruits and veggies so they’re ready to use.

Soak beans overnight and keep them in the fridge for the week or freeze some to thaw when you need them.

Make double batches and freeze. Especially useful for baked dishes.

Use a slow cooker. Start it up in the morning for dinner!

Pre-measure the required spices and dry ingredients of your favorite dishes and store them in a container for speed seasoning when you’re ready.

Put roasts in the oven before bed at 200 degrees (helps keep your house warm during winter nights and cool during summer days), pop it out when you wake and an hour before dinner put it back in at 350.

Chop extra for today’s meal and package them for another.

Cleaning as you go makes the whole after dinner experience better and cooking becomes an overall less dreadful project.

Juice your meal or eat them raw. Most raw foods have so many more enzymes and vitamins than their counterparts.

Structure determines behavior. So change the structure of your environment so that it is easier and quicker than jumping into the car and driving to eat that chemical burger at the fast food shop.

Michael Meuth