Tuesday, August 14, 2007
Even though I love to cook (and was a Pampered Chef kitchen consultant for more than eight years), I just can't get excited about cooking dinner these days with a toddler and a pre-schooler underfoot. So, I've been trying to find ways to speed up the preparation and cooking process while keeping the meals nutritious. I like the idea of frozen meals, but dislike the additives and preservatives that are in most prepared foods.
Then my friend Lisa turned me on to a stir fry dish with tofu, and it was a hit. Tonight after dinner, I went to the kitchen to put away the leftovers, and there weren't any! I grilled Trader Joe's extra firm tofu (comes in a 2-pack for 99 cents!) Then I added Trader Joe's Pacific Shores Stir Fry Vegetables (frozen with no additives or preservatives and it costs a dollar and some change!) I cooked them in a little garlic oil, rice vinegar and soy sauce. To round out the meal, I steamed some white rice. It took me less than 30 minutes from start to finish and cost under $3.00 total to feed my family of four! I am so excited about this!
Another way I've done fast food the nutritious way is buying Trader Joe's frozen pizzas. (This isn't a free ad for TJs) Before trying their pizza, I had yet to find a store-bought frozen pizza that didn't taste like the cardboard box it came in. But I and my family have enjoyed TJs frozen pizzas (with no preservatives and no artificial colors or flavors). Our faves are the Three Cheese, which we added pineapples to once, the Pizza Margherita and the Spinach Pizza. Each pizza costs $3 to $5, and you need two pizzas for a family of four who really enjoys pizza, like we do (or one pizza and a nice salad).