From Store Owner Anne Milneck
I’m not one for resolutions, but I read a story on cooking-specific promises for the year, and I thought: now that’s a good reason to make a resolution – or five! I write recipes, blogs, tips and tricks. I develop cooking class curriculums and set up plans for moving folks through information-packed cooking sessions. Daily, I advise folks on how to cook more and make delicious meals. I run through the shop waving my home cooking banner. All the while, most nights, my husband eats cold cereal and milk, and I’m hard pressed to cobble together a sandwich. This is less about “get back in the kitchen!” (I’m always in the kitchen.) This is more about realistic resolutions – promises to myself to return to a doable and delicious routine. Here are my five resolutions for cooking this year.
1-Meal Prep Imperfectly
I’m a perfectionist, and it’s the main reason why the chatter in my head talks me out of meal prepping. Bonkers because we recently ran a promotion all around Three Simple Approaches to Meal Prep with my friend Ana with Trifecta Sports Therapy. Looks like I need to go back and read the blog and take my own advice. Here’s the plan: meal prep something. anything. Something is better than nothing. A batch of grains. A pot of soup. Or simply early salt some chicken. Oh, and maybe I should attend our Meal Prep cooking class!
Meal Prep Recipes to Try:
Turkish Red Lentil Soup
Dry Brined Sheet Pan Chicken Thighs
2-Hit the Books
My friend Lili does this best. She teaches cooking classes in our Teaching Kitchen and when we meet, she arrives with a stack of cookbooks. She regularly hits up the cookbook shelves at the library and tries new recipes regularly. One blog I read suggested cooking a recipe from a new cookbook each week. I’m tweaking that to once per month – and if I do that, I’ll call it a success!
Recipes from some of our favorite cookbooks to try:
Country Captain Chicken
Delicate Almond Cake
3-Wok this Way
“I have one, but I never use it.” We hear this so often about one specific cooking tool: the wok! I love mine, but I do fall into the don’t-use-it-enough camp. Woks heat up quickly and make fast work of fridge-cleaning stir frys and noodle bowls. For more inspiration, head to our wok-centered blog for tips!
Wok-ready recipes to try:
Kung Pao Chicken
Quick Shanghai Noodles
4-Dig Deep into the Freezer
I remember my mother declaring a week of cooking from the freezer. She’d thaw meats or prepared dishes all in an effort to free up space and not create waste. I do this regularly – it’s a great way to flex your Improv Cook muscles in the kitchen!
Two of our favorite recipes using freezer staples:
Duck Flatbread with Shallot & Figs
Crawfish & Corn Chowder
If anything stumps me in the kitchen, it’s salads. I love them, and I also want to store them for eating the next day. That’s a tough call, but there are some salads that continue to shine – and even get better – when they’re parked in the fridge.
Our make-ahead salad solutions:
Main Dish Italian Chopped Salad
Greek Chickpea Salad Pitas