Friday, March 22, 2013

Okay! Food in the Fridge

Here's a funny thing...  I couldn't remember if I've mentioned today's subject before or not and so I've just spent a few minutes re-reading previous posts.  I say "Okay" a lot.  I start sentences with it and everything.  I'm certain English majors around the world are cringing, but I think it's funny.  I had an Uncle who said Okay all the darn time.  Genetics are funny.  I am thankful to be at a stage in my life where I can laugh at my own ridiculousness.

On to the purpose of this post.  I have a busy family and these days it's rare for all of us to be home at dinner time.  My kids are virtually grown, but rarely cook for themselves and rather than leaving them to a lifetime of pb&j's or cheese sandwiches, I've come up with a few things to keep nearly ready food in the fridge for quick meals and I thought I'd share.  

It's the chicken, jar of diced veggies
and naked pasta, hee hee.
Chicken - We eat a lot of chicken.  A tip from Pioneer Woman is to cut the chicken breast like you do a cake layer.  Or, like butterflying a breast, but keep going to get two pieces that still have the chicken breast shape.  Why you might ask, well the breast pieces are too large for just one person.  And cutting them this way, they still look great, but are more reasonably portion sized.  After cutting, I saute with a small amount of butter and olive oil until cooked through.  You can also bake them in the oven, but I prefer the saute.  Once cooked, I cool, then wrap individually.  (Okay, this is chicken people and you don't want to risk salmonella or anything else, so cook the chicken thoroughly and cool safely to ensure good food for you and your family.)  I do this twice a month, so I make enough to last two weeks.  I take half of the individually wrapped breasts and put them in a large zipper bag and stow it in the fridge.  The other half, I put in a freezer bag and freeze, taking it out when the first batch is gone.  This chicken can become a sandwich just as it is, or it can be chopped and added to a salad, turned into chicken salad, made into a quesadilla, added to soup, rice, baked potato, eggs, etc. It's great I tell ya, it's great!

Another artistic view of same
Pasta Salad - My youngest thinks pasta salad is the bomb.  But if you've ever had pasta salad in the fridge for more than a day you know that all the dressing absorbs into the pasta and the veggies begin to soften right away.  Here's what I do, I make the pasta, cool it and store it in a large container in the fridge, naked.  I then prepare the veggies, mix them together and store them in the fridge in their own container.  When you want pasta salad, a spoon full of pasta and spoon full of veggies, add your own dressing and stir.  The veggies by themselves, especially in mason jars, will be fresh and crisp for days.  Naked pasta-the same.  Once the pasta is cool, rinse it with cool water and let drain - no sticking!   Here's my favorite part about this, I like odd stuff in my salads, like pickles.  Because I'm making a me salad, I can put whatever I want it in, including some very delicious dill pickle bites every time I want!!!

Just wanted to share, okay! OKAY!

BTW~ we went to look at more countertop options and I've come home confused.  I thought I was headed in one direction and ended up attracted to a completely different one.  Oh, geez.  So, I'm going to sleep on it, go to one last place tomorrow and then make a freaking decision.

Okay, here's another funny thing about me, I take really interesting pictures.  Just look at these two.  Clearly not a food blogger.  As my boss says, "We are all gifted differently."  hee hee, yes I am :)

Most importantly...      Have a great weekend people. 

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