As much as I enjoy cooking I don't love being in the kitchen for hours preparing a meal. It's a lot of work. I bet you don't either! Especially when the meal is consumed in less time than it takes to prepare it. Dinner parties, brunches, and parties are a different story. Those take time and different dishes are prepared to complete the meal. Those are the exceptions. It's the weeknights, the times where you just want a good home cooked meal that didn't take hours to prepare, that's what I am talking about.
So where to start to make this a habit?
One, the grocery list. Keep it simple. If the meal has a few ingredients that means grocery shopping will be easy. When you go with a game plan or a general idea is good enough you know what you are in the super market for so grab the items, check out and go. Know 1-2 to recipes you are going to make during the week and get those ingredients plus whatever else you need and out you go. Go with a game plan.
Two, make dishes/recipes that only have a few ingredients. Why complicate cooking with having a recipe with 20 ingredients? 5-10 (tops) and that is not including the essentials of salt, pepper, herbs/seasoning and oil or butter. I am talking about making recipes with 5-10 actual ingredients. 10 is a bit much, keep it lower and you will see how simple and delicious you can make a meal. Give it a try! Limit your recipes to 5 or 6 ingredients for a few weeks and see how simple cooking can be.
Three, cook the meal in 1 pot, baking dish, or pan. Cleaning up will only take you a matter of minutes. Let's be honest that is the literally the worst thing about cooking, the cleaning.
So if you can simplify your week night recipes to 5-10, but try to keep it 5-7 ingredients you will make grocery shopping easy and quick, cooking time reduced, and cleanup will be a breeze.
Yields 4 servings
Time 30-40 minutes
2 medium zucchinis - half moon cut
1/2 medium yellow onion- small dice
2 garlic cloves - minced
1 lb 94% lean ground turkey
1 tablespoons canned smoked ancho chili sauce & 1 chili chopped (at Publix)
1 can no sodium diced tomatoes (remove the tomato juice)
1 1/4 cup shredded mild cheddar cheese
3 tablespoons olive oil
Salt + Pepper
1. In a large skillet pan add the olive oil over medium heat. Once the skillet pan is warm/hot add the onions with a pinch of salt. Let this saute for 1-2 minutes.
2. Add garlic and zucchini. Let this cook for 2-3 minutes.
3. Before adding the ground turkey season the meat well with salt and pepper. Then add it to the pan. Break up the meat well. Once it half way cooked and browned add the diced tomatoes and canned smoked ancho chilis and sauce. Let this continue to cook. You may want to lower the heat to low or low/medium.
4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Once the turkey is cooked pour the recipe into a baking dish or pyrex. Top with 1 cup of the shredded cheese and reserve some to garnish after. Bake in the oven until the cheese is melted, about 5-8 minutes.
5. Remove from oven and garnish with more cheese and serve.