Tofu is inexpensive, filling, nutritious, and … often tastes terrible. It doesn’t have to. I promise. Time and temperature are two simple tricks that can turn your tofu frown upside down.
One of our staple meals for busy weeknights is a tofu and veggie stir fry over brown rice. We cook and eat a lot of tofu and we’ve cooked and eaten a lot of bad tofu but over the years we eventually found a simple way to make it taste great in three simple steps.
This is my favorite beach house or summer vacation recipe. It’s inexpensive, quick to make, yet feels indulgent and fancy. You can customize the broth to your liking or whatever you find in the pantry.
It’s even relatively healthy (mussels are really high in selenium). You can make a big pot, warm up some bread, and throw together a green salad in less than 30 minutes. Perfect after a long day in the sun.
While we mostly eat a plant-based diet in our house, we do have fish about once a week. Mostly it’s in the form of tacos, but when it’s not it is typically a piece of salmon. I like salmon because it’s loaded with B12, vitamin D, and omega-3 fatty acids. All the protein fills me up, fights workout inflammation, and helps me recover for next time.
Plus, salmon is great fresh or frozen for a fancy weekend or a quick weeknight meal. It’s sustainable, affordable, and easily adaptable to many different methods and flavors. It’s a kitchen all-star. Did I mention the girls will eat it, too? Always a plus.
I never went to culinary school. I’m not a chef. I’ve never worked in a restaurant, but nevertheless, I consider myself a decent cook for home-style meals. I enjoy it and we rarely eat out.
I have a confession however, I cannot cook rice.
My girls are dessert fiends. They eat their share of cookies and brownies, but I’m always on the lookout for quick, easy desserts that satisfy that post-meal craving, but don’t load up on the sugar and empty calories. There’s a time for a big ice cream sundae or warm chocolate chip cookie as big as your face, but it’s not after every meal.
Truth be told, I definitely have a sweet tooth, too. My perfect dessert is something that satisfies, tastes great, feels like an indulegnce, but also might be sneakily healthy. This chia pudding hits a lot of those marks. It’s fast to make. Takes only one bowl. Tastes rich and satisfying. Can be almost endless customized with add-ins. And the kids love it.
I recently taught Cecilia how to make soft scrambled eggs using low heat and a lot of attention. It’s definitely worth the effort to get the creamy, almost curdless, scramble, but it takes a good amount of time to do them properly. Not ideal for a quick weekday morning breakfast or lunch. But if you have time to boil water, then you have time for a well-cooked egg to add some protein to any meal.
This is a true back pocket recipe. The sum total of the recipe is in the title. If you want a perfect boiled egg to top your salad, noodles, oatmeal or messy breakfast sandwich, you only need about seven minutes.
Dinners you know and trust. Everyone has them. They are time-tested and family-approved. The recipes or meals that you can pencil in on the weekly plan or pickup the ingredients without thinking while strolling the aisles during the weekly shopping and you know people will eat, or at least not grumble out too much when placed on the table.
For us, quick fish dinners, tacos or burgers, rank high in our easy, repeat dinner rotation. It’s something that I know I can get on the table quickly, will be nutritious and filling, and the girls won’t complain. Mostly because we’ve given up on Ally for the moment, she gets beans and rice, but still easy!
With just a little bit of forethought, you can dress up fish tacos, or burgers, with only a little additional effort. Sort of like putting the occasional bow tie on your dog.