Friday, March 1, 2013

COOKING FOR ONE!

A little while ago, I visited a good friend of mine who has a nifty little cooking show on YouTube called "Cooking For 1 With Katy".  The show has been running for several years and features recipes for those of us who may be cooking and eating alone.  Katy is a fabulous host who throws in her dry humor and clever wit whenever possible, and that keeps things flowing.  I love it!  This kind of thing is definitely needed.  I for one, enjoy cooking far more when I have others to share it with.  Knowing that someone else is depending on you for life-sustaining regular meals, is also a great motivator for making sure dinner gets on the table!  Cooking for one is a whole other beast.

Here are some of my favorite tips when cooking for 1:

1.  Try Legumes!  There are many types of Legumes - from Lentils to Chick Peas to Butter Beans.  When stored properly, they have a shelf life of up to 30 years!!  This isn't the only reason they are great to have around.  You can prepare and size serving you like, simply by getting a scoop or two from the pantry.  You won't have to worry about using the entire package within a few days like you would with a package of ground beef or chicken.  Not only that but they are super affordable and incredibly healthy!  Legumes are packed full of protein, fiber, vitamins and minerals.  They are both a lean source of protein AND a vegetable!!

2.  Cook Once, freeze individual servings!  Creating freezer meals and dividing into individual servings not only saves you on cooking time but saves food that likely would have been wasted.  You can make it a meal, or even precook some rice and freeze for an easy meal solution that will just take a few minutes to preprae instead of around 40.

3.  GRILL IT!  Grilling is one of the healthier cooking methods, because there is no need to use oil or fat.  Also, it's awfully tasty.  If you buy larger packages of meat and then freeze them, you can just pull out the serving you need the night before to thaw overnight in the fridge.

4.  PLAN A MENU!  Menu planning is just as important when cooking for 1 as it is when feeding a group.  This will take the stress of of daily meals and also creates an opportunity get the most out of ingredients and plan foods you know you'll love.  Using produce when cooking for 1 means finding a couple of different meals to incorporate some of the same ingredients.  You might grill some zucchini with chicken one night for dinner and then plan to throw the leftover zucchini into an omelette for breakfast later that week!

Here's a recipe to get you started.  The show changed a bit when Katy began eating without sugar or flour, so this delicious Frittata recipe was modified slightly.  Enjoy!!