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Good Simple Food
10-25-2011, 01:42 PM (This post was last modified: 10-25-2011 02:00 PM by Onebad70ss.)
Post: #1
Good Simple Food
Firstly, let me apologize in advance if this has been covered before, but I was wondering if any of my fellow Bar 'n' Grillers can point me in the right direction?

What I am looking for is any ideas/suggestions for dinner meals that are simple, yet good. (cookbooks, websites etc.) We have tried some of the mains off of the Bar 'n' Grill menu and quite liked them.

As many of you know, Monica has started chemotherapy again and as we get further into the cycle, she really loses her interest in food, so the meal preparation starts to fall on me. With a day consisting of me leaving for work at 6:00 am and getting back home around 5:30 pm, it doesn't leave a whole lot of time for myself to be in the ol' kitchen

Any help would be most appreciated
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10-25-2011, 09:35 PM
Post: #2
RE: Good Simple Food
The crockpot is your best-friend One-Bad!!! I have some wonderful, easy recipes that can be prepared the night before, then put into the crockpot on low the next a.m., and voila! Dinner is ready when you get home! Also, the Kraft Foods website has a lot of great recipes and I find it very user-friendly.

Some of our favorite crockpot recipes are:
Italian beef & noodles
Turkey Breast & drumsticks
Pot Roast w/red potatoes
Pork Roast w/apples & potatoes
Split Pea w/Ham soup
Bean & Ham soup
White Chicken Chili
Chicken Cacciatore

Let me know if any of these sound good to either of you and I will be happy to forward them along!

"I cook with wine, sometimes I even add it to the food."
W. C. Fields
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10-25-2011, 11:01 PM
Post: #3
RE: Good Simple Food
Good call, Deb! Italian beef and corned beef are two easy-peasy crockpot dishes we prepare, along w/chili and chicken 'n' dumplings.

While I can't conjour up recipes at this moment, my first suggestion (taking your long work days into consideration) would be to seek out easy meals that can be prepared in advance over the weekend and then refrigerated/frozen for use throughout the week. Or, making a double batch of a Sunday meal (i.e. pork loin or steak and grilled veggies) and then utilizing leftovers to create another meal a couple days later (fajitas).

Even though prepping meals can be a chore, getting ready for the prep can be fun. Some of the best "dates" hubby & I have are perusing the wares at the local farmer's market or the newest fancy-schmancy grocery store, then planning meals based on a special or unexpected find we discover.

As an aside, next time you visit your regular grocery store, move your way through the store in the opposite direction of how you would normally go...you'd be amazed at all the stuff you "see" even though it's been there all along!

Blah blah blah....yada yada yada!
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10-26-2011, 07:22 AM (This post was last modified: 10-26-2011 07:29 AM by Rey.)
Post: #4
RE: Good Simple Food
I almost hesitate to suggest an already prepared frozen meal, after all you were probably looking for cooking suggestions, I'm sure. But if it is also about lack of time, and just wanting something decent that is easy and fast, then maybe check this out. I like lasagna a lot, but to make it from scratch takes quite a bit of time, patience, and work, time we don't always have enough of. I have found that the frozen family size Stouffer's "Lasagna Italiano" to be quite good, turning out better than some lasagna's I have had in restaurants. No, its not really cooking, but as far as good, easy, and somewhat quick it makes the grade in my opinion.

What? A frozen meal? Take him around back and shoot him! No, really, I'm just saying, most of them are not very good, but this one actually is.

Well-weathered leather, hot metal and oil, the scented country air..
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10-26-2011, 07:31 AM
Post: #5
RE: Good Simple Food
(10-26-2011 07:22 AM)Rey Wrote:  I almost hesitate to suggest an already prepared frozen meal, after all you were probably looking for cooking suggestions, I'm sure. But if it is also about lack of time, and just wanting something decent that is easy and fast, then maybe check this out. I like lasagna a lot, but to make it from scratch takes quite a bit of time, patience, and work, time we don't always have enough of. I have found that the frozen family size Stouffer's "Lasagna Italiano" to be quite good, turning out better than some lasagna's I have had in restaurants. No, its not really cooking, but as far as good, easy, and somewhat quick it makes the grade in my opinion.

What? A frozen meal? Take him around back and shoot him! No, really, I'm just saying, most of them are not very good, but this one actually is.

I second that on the Stouffer's lasagnes...they have a yummy veggie version as well as the traditional. Oh , and their mac & cheese is to die for!!

"I cook with wine, sometimes I even add it to the food."
W. C. Fields
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10-26-2011, 01:48 PM
Post: #6
RE: Good Simple Food
Thanks for the response you guys. We will definitely check out what Stouffers has to offer. Sometimes after a long hard day, all you really feel like doing is popping something in the oven..

Debskis, if you would be so kind as to forward the recipes for:

Italian Beef & Noodles
Pot Roast w/ Red Potatoes
Chicken Cacciatore

No panic, whenever you get a free moment...
Much appreciated
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10-26-2011, 07:00 PM (This post was last modified: 10-26-2011 07:00 PM by RN-PRN.)
Post: #7
RE: Good Simple Food
Hey Debskis...post them here for all to enjoy Smile I could use some new quick recipes, as well.
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10-30-2011, 09:42 PM
Post: #8
RE: Good Simple Food
ITALIAN BEEF & NOODLES
Just made this for a family gathering today...well, I actually had to make two batches because the first batch was, well, let\'s just say apparently it IS possible to overcook meat in a crockpot!! Never thought it was possible, but cubed beef obviously cooks much more quickly than say, a chuck roast, so 7-8 hours on low is about all it needs. Anyway, this recipe is similar to Beef Stroganoff, but with an Italian flair (married to someone 1/2 Italian so garlic & red sauce are a staple in our house!) I\'ll post the basic recipe, but I don\'t really know exact amounts, per se. I just do it \"to taste\" and adjust as needed!

INGREDIENTS: (Serves 4)
2 lbs. cubed beef - chuck or sirloin
1 - 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
1 large yellow onion
1 T - minced garlic
1 T - Oregano
1 T - Basil
1 C - dry red wine (optional)
1 Bay Leaf
1/2 packet Lipton onion soup mix
1 Can Campbells mushroom soup (condensed)

Brown meat w/half the onion in olive oil or butter and place into crockpot - don\'t forget all the yummy bits of charred stuff that is left in the skillet! (Sometimes I\'ll put a little water or red wine in the pan once I\'ve removed the meat and swish it around to loosen all the bits - I think there is a technical term for this process, but, I just call it scraping the stuff). Then add all remaining ingredients to your crockpot, EXCEPT the mushroom soup, stir it up a bit, cover and cook on low 7-ish hours. DO NOT, under pentalty of death, remove the lid during cooking!!! The experts says you lose 20 minutes every time you life the lid of a crockpot. So, no peeking!! :-)

Anyway, once you\'ve reached that magic 7-8 hour point, remove the bay leaf, and stir-in your mushroom soup. Serve over wide egg noodles or similar (I like the No Yolks). Enjoy!

This can be done on the stove-top as well, but requires more supervision (stirring), so the meat cooks evenly. Follow the same recipe, only simmer on low for about 2 hours. Flavors meld a bit more the second day using this method.

Let me know if you have any questions. Wish you lived closer Steve & Monica!! I\'d make a batch and bring it over!!!

P.S. I like to spray the inside of my crockpot with non-stick spray for easy cleanup!

"I cook with wine, sometimes I even add it to the food."
W. C. Fields
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10-31-2011, 06:06 AM (This post was last modified: 10-31-2011 06:07 AM by debskis.)
Post: #9
RE: Good Simple Food
POT ROAST, POTATOES & VEGGIES - The ultimate comfort food!!!

INGREDIENTS:
2-3 lb chuck or rump roast
Carrots - I like to use baby carrots cuz it's easier - no cutting!
Celery - 2 or 3 stalks - chunky cuts are best
A few red or white potatoes - quartered, skin on or off as preferred
1 Large Yellow Onion
1 T minced garlic (optional if you use the Savory Garlic soup mix...might be a bit much!)
1 pkt Lipton Savory Garlic or Onion Soup Mix (or any seasoning you prefer really!)
1 C dry red wine
1 bay leaf
1 can Campbell's mushroom soup (condensed)

Brown your meat on all sides w/half the onion in olive oil or butter, again scraping all the yummy bits from the pan and place it all into the crock pot. Depending on how large your crockpot is, you can either surround the meat with the potatoes & veggies or place them on top. Some people say you should put the veggies in first then the meat on top, but, I think the veggies get a little too soggy that way. To each his/her own there! Add the rest of the ingredients, including mushroom soup (in any order really), cook on low for 8-9 hours. You should have a roast that is moist and falling apart in a wonderful gravy when all is said and done! (Don't forget to remove the Bay Leaf...great for flavor, not for eating!)

My kids don't really like the veggies cooked in the crockpot, so I usually just do the meat and potatoes in there, then cook the veggies on the stove or roast them in the oven, etc. Also, you can use whatever flavor packet you prefer, I just love the Lipton mixes because they are easy, but can be somewhat on the salty side. I've used dry-rubs on the meat before cooking and those are great too! This method is very versatile, and can be used w/pork roasts as well. Put your favorite BBQ sauce in with the pork, shred the meat at the end, add more BBQ sauce and you have yummy pulled pork! Works for chicken breast too - only needs to cook 6 hours though. We call it sloppy chicken and the kids love it!

I'm rambling...time to get my own dinner going in the crockpot...pork chops tonight at Chez Deborah!!

"I cook with wine, sometimes I even add it to the food."
W. C. Fields
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10-31-2011, 06:40 AM
Post: #10
RE: Good Simple Food
Thats a bit diff than what Lu Lu does. She does not add the wine (HINT dear!) and the mushroom soup is a twist we havent tried before. I think the soup mix is a different twist as well. This looks particularly good for those nice cold fall days when you get finished raking leaves or picking pumpkins.

Thanks deb...will have to try these!

Primary Principle - "It must NEVER be my fault"
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