I love the magazine, Real Simple. It has generally do-able ideas to make my life seemingly more organized, has fun fashion tips, and lots of well written, tug-at-your-heartstrings articles.
However, I always seem to skip the "meals in minutes" segments. Once, as a young, naive, newlywed, I scoured my magazine, trying to find easy recipes for two lovebirds, one being a tried and true red-meat lover. However, I tried a chicken dish with shredded yams and arugula, and was kindly asked to never make it again.
I'm not saying that the recipes are not good, nor are they not simple, but Real Simple, you've got nothing on my freezer full of beef. Take tonight's meal, for example. At 5:00, I assumed my family would want to eat, as they tend to do every night. So, as we were playing outside, I sauntered over to our freezer, pulled out a package of ribeyes and set them in the microwave to defrost (I know this is not ideal, and Real Simple folks would have had me defrost them sooner, but I forgot about dinner.). Anyway, after we had come in from playing, Joe took to the grill, I took to the stove and in 15 minutes, we had steak, garlic mashed potatoes, Texas toast, broccoli, and homemade applesauce (from my mom).
Take that, Rachael Ray!
Now, I know that some of you do not have the luxury of a) a freezer full of beef or b) a husband who will grill happily all the time and/or c) stay at home and can saunter around defrosting meat at 5:00. However, I urge you to try to stock your freezer with beef. Pounds of hamburger. Packages of ribeyes, sirloin, and round steak. Roasts of the Chuck and Arm varieties.
These will get you a lot more praise and a lot more longevity than a recipe calling for a bunch of freshly shredded yams and arugula.
Not that I don't like either...it's just that when you have a good base, like really good meat, you can go a looooooong way with just a potato.
So, for those of you who are saying, "I don't know where to get good beef!! How do I get this wonderful time saving, nutritious and happy meat?"
Someone has a cousin, dad, cousin's husband's dad, mother-in-law's neighbor or whatever who is a beef producer. Ask if they sell beef in quarters or halves. If you have limited freezer space, ask a friend to share a quarter with you. You will curse the fact that you won't be able to wedge in ice cream and Lean Cuisine, but you will thank me later...as you will not need either the ice cream or the Lean Cuisine....you'll be skinny from not eating the ice cream and ugh...who wouldn't choose a lean hamburger over a cardboard Thai dish by our friends at Stouffers?
If all else fails, go back to Real Simple and buy your groceries for the week from their list, make their fancy multi-step meals.
I'll be at my house...dining on a ribeye.