Let’s face it, not everyone can and/or wants to cook from scratch every day. And some people don’t think about separating recipes out and mixing it up. I am a big fan of leftovers being reinvented instead of just reheated. I also believe that we need to analyze and pick apart recipes. You can add a little homemade to a little “freezer made” to make it 10 times better. Here are a few things to do plus a bonus mini-recipe or two.
Techniques aren’t “one trick ponies”:Sometimes techniques like how something is cut, prepped, or marinated, seem so specific that we don’t think about applying it to other recipes where the technique isn’t expressly mentioned. How I do it: I once was told if i wanted to make the perfect meat for a Philly Cheese-Steak, I could just take partially frozen steak and apply the “cheese slicing” blade (that is what I call it) to it. The meat comes out thin enough to let some light through and it cooks up wonderfully. It doesn’t get tough when reheated either if you come back for more. I took this same trick this past week to make my fajita. I marinated the meat in the processor bowl and it came out so juicy and delicious. It also made the meat go further without making me feel like I was starving.
The Sauce that wasn’t bought:Sometimes when we have a recipe there is a sauce, broth, glaze, or topping that is overlooked as its own entity. Look at some of your favorite pasta dishes for a good example. Spaghetti = spaghetti sauce, chicken parmesan = parmesan sauce, and goulash=everything in the fridge (just kidding). If you are a fan of jar sauces you probably use the same sauce for a lot of things (that gets boring doesn’t it). Apply that to all the sauces in your life! How I do it: Besides using the same soup broth for multiple soups. I like to put sauces where they “don’t belong.” I was craving chicken, pasta, and sauce, but my stomach was craving something light and fresh. I don’t know about you but if my stomach isn’t happy, I am not happy. So I listened to my stomach and made my own “Roxy’s light tomato sauce.” It is extremely easy and quick to make just grab a blender or processor and dump the following: (almost all is to personal taste)
- 2 medium tomatoes (raw not cooked!)
- 1 cup baby spinach (optional; you won’t taste it)
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- a pinch of sugar (seriously)
- extra virgin olive oil to thin and combine your sauce