Cooking for a Family
I’m always told that it is so difficult to prepare well balanced meals for a family that some people just resort to eating the same thing every day or worst, feel the need to call in a pizza. Not that i have anything wrong with pizza, just don’t make it a daily habit. Cooking for a family is all about finding balance, a mix of everything everybody will love, hitting familiar flavours, textures and ingredients. Before attacking any new recipe from the shiny new book you bought 3 months ago but never opened, think about what your family likes and dislikes. Make a mental list of what you can use in dishes and don’t be afraid to be a little adventurous.
Let’s take a meal almost everybody will enjoy (well maybe not the health conscious ones): Roast Chicken, Mashed Potatoes and some kind of broth based or tomato based gravy. Simple, effective and tasty, but not the best for the weight loss department or for those trying to introduce their family members to new ingredients and broadening their taste horizons (if you have a REALLY difficult friend/parent/sibling, just feed them bread and tell them to shut up), not to mention that it isn’t the quickest dinner (at least 1 hour if you’re pretty fast).
Using those three dishes, play around with familiar textures, flavours and think of ways to diversify and lighten them up. Mashed potatoes can easily be substituted for: sweet potatoes, pureed peas, squashed squash, or in my case garbanzos and zucchini. Roast Chicken can be switched for some properly seared chicken thighs; they keep the same juiciness without the long cooking process (high sear until brown on one side, flip, cover, lower heat until cooked through). Lastly, instead of gravy why not go the direction of a relish? Some vegetables, a natural sweetener (honey), some acid (vinegar) on low heat will always turn up a beautifully caramelized mess.
Find your system. Once you figure out the way you like to cook and eat, everything will become so much easier.
Seared Chicken Thighs, Mashed Chickpeas and Garbanzos, Tomato Onion Relish
Start by placing a can of chopped tomatoes, two medium sized chopped onions, salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, 1 tbps balsamic, 2tsps of honey and 1 tbsp of herbes de provence in a pan with olive oil. Cook covered until sticky and tender on low fire.
Take one cup of chickpeas and put them in a blender with 1 crushed garlic and 1 chopped zucchini, salt and pepper. Once blended, heat up some olive oil in a pan and slowly cook until thick.
Take 4 small chicken thighs, sear them on high on one side until crispy and brown. Turn them around, cover, lower heat (low), and let cook until juices don’t run red when pierced. When cooked toss with some coriander leaves, 1 tsp of plum sauce, 1 drop of sesame oil and the juice of one plump lemon.
This Post is brought to you by Solane LPG
My family and I have been using the brand for a while since it is probably the safest brand locally, also i really appreciate their timely delivery services and loyalty programs.
For more information on Solane, its loyalty programs, promos..etc, please visit: http://www.solane.com.ph/