I'm Just Here To Cook…and Eat!


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Let’s Have a Turkey

I’m not talking about a roasted turkey. But I am talking about appetizers made into a turkey! All over the internet you can find examples of this. So I decided to have my go at it this year. I made a butternut squash hummus which I turned into a turkey. Just roast butternut squash with some sage, oil, salt and pepper. Then blend together with chickpeas and some of their juice and a bit more oil. Season with salt and pepper. Then cut up peppers into slices for the feathers and make the face out of pita. Everyone will love it!  Happy Thanksgiving everyone!


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Weeknight Meal Prep

One year ago I started a new job in the city which meant longer hours, a longer commute and less time to do things at home. Not the best combination for this girl that loves to cook! I’ve always prepped my weeks, but this new adventure got me on a new schedule. But what people don’t realize is, even with such long hours away from home, you CAN have homemade meals throughout the week and don’t need to rely on takeout every night! Here are a few of my tips: 

1) Plan your week at the weekend. Plan out meals as much as you can on Sunday and do your food shopping for the week based on that. You’ll have everything you need and won’t need to worry about stopping at a store on your way home. 

2) Keep your pantry stocked! This is super important to making your week come together! It’s a wonder what you can make from pantry items. Try this recipe I posted awhile back! It’s quick, healthy and doesn’t take much effort when you get home. 

https://imjustheretocook.wordpress.com/2014/01/22/pantry-cabinet-dinner-tuna-pasta/ 

Another good pantry creation is to add a bit of freshness to the dish. Sauté in oil pine nuts, kalamata olives and small white beans. Roast some cauliflower or broccoli and toss it all with pasta. Quick, easy, healthy. 


3) Your freezer is your best friend! I keep all sorts of things in there to defrost during the week – frozen bags of shrimp, shredded cheese, even meat which has steady been trimmed and ready to cook. Just ensure you wrap and store things properly to avoid freezer burn. You can even prepare tins of lasagna or baked ziti which can go right in the oven with easy clean-up if you use throw away tins!


4) Prepare a meal on Sunday which can last a few lunches and/or dinners. Whether it be big pot of sauce or something roasted in the oven. Prepare your Tupperwares on Sunday nights so they’re ready to go. 


5) Don’t forget breakfast and snacks! These are two of the most forgettable and easiest to stray from healthy in my opinion. But if you again prepare on Sunday you can be in good shape! Hard boiled eggs, yogurt and cut up fruit is a good start. Take some help from the store with baby carrots and hummus for a good afternoon snack. Cheese sticks and an apple are also a great go to, especially in the fall! 


6) Last but not least, invest in a slow cooker. These can be a lifesaver to have a comforting warm dinner at the ready as soon as you walk in the door. 

I hope these tips I’ve adapted over the past year help you meal prep and make your week a bit easier and a bit healthier. I know you can do it too! Enjoy!