Saving Time In The Kitchen

syd-wachs-120739.jpg

Happy new year!

It’s brutally cold out, which means that home cooked meals are a must! But who has the time to cook every night? I find it especially difficult to prepare dinner when I'm getting home late, and all I want to do is warm up under the covers with a hot drink! Sound familiar? 

To ensure that I don’t order takeout every night, I’m challenging myself to eat a home cooked meal 3-5 nights a week—and I challenge you to do the same! The easiest way to do this is by batch cooking! It’s the secret weapon to saving time in the kitchen. All you need is some Tupperware, a freezer, and a few hours to spare in the kitchen.

Not only will batch cooking save you time when dinner rolls around, but it will help you eat healthier throughout the week. It will also reduce your stress level because you will feel good knowing that dinner is already prepared!

I’m going to be honest though. It’s not easy to cook for several hours. You need to prepare many ingredients, clean up the massive mess that follows, and have both patience and time to spend in the kitchen. If you’re up for the challenge though, I highly recommend giving batch cooking a try!

Here are some ideas for a few dishes that I think are perfect for warming you up on a cold day! These dishes are easy to make in bulk, so you can freeze it for later or eat it throughout the week. Scroll to the bottom and try my vegetarian lasagna recipe!

IMG_8764.JPG

Suggested dishes:

-       Meatballs

-       Shepherd’s pie

-       Lasagna

-       Red lentil and coconut soup

-       Beef and barley soup

-       Butternut squash soup

Since these are common dishes, I leave it to you to find your favourite recipe! I challenge you this week to prepare two of these dishes. You’ll feel well fed for a few days and rest easy knowing that your next meal is safely in the freezer.

Bon Appétite!

Lauren

Vegetarian Lasagna Recipe

IMG_8728.JPG

Lasagna is a great dish that you could prepare in advance and freeze, or make on Sunday night and eat throughout the week. It will keep you full, warm and happy in knowing that you don't have to cook for a few days!

My recipe below is purposely simple because you can take many liberties when preparing lasagna. This recipe is vegetarian, but feel free to add beef, different types of cheeses and your preferred vegetables!

Ingredients: 

  • 9 Lasagna noodles
  • 2 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Small Onion, chopped
  • ½ cup Mixed Mushroom, sliced
  • 1 container Ricotta Cheese (475g)
  • 1 container Cottage Cheese (500g)
  • 2 eggs 
  • Salt and Pepper to taste 
  • Lemon Juice from 1/2 lemon 
  • Frozen Spinach 
  • Mozzarella 
  • Tomato Sauce 

Preparation: 

  1. Boil Pasta according to package directions
  2. Heat pan with some oil, then sauté onion and mushrooms on a low heat until caramelized. Set aside.
  3. For the cheese filling, mix ricotta, cottage cheese, eggs, salt, pepper, spinach, and lemon juice in a bowl. Add caramelized onions and mushrooms to the bowl and mix.
  4. To assemble, put a thin layer of tomato sauce on the bottom of the pyrex. Layer lasagna noodles on top. Add cheese filling. Repeat with tomato sauce until you have 3 layers of pasta. Once the noodles are all used up, add more tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese on top.
  5. Bake in 350-degree oven for 45-60 minutes.