Monday, January 04, 2016

Family 'Fast Food'

Sometimes us parents get a hard time for wanting quick or easy meal options for the family. We are all busy, our kids often have very little patience when it comes to empty tummies and we all work hard in some way, shape, or form. I thought I would share my kitchen skills (or lack there of) and show that us 'normal' everyday Mums do use quick fixes in the kitchen, that it's OK and that everybody does it. Quick doesn't have to mean unhealthy though, nor does the regular occurrence of fish fingers harm anyone (who doesn't love those?). Meals like this super easy Jambalaya will have you drooling for the microwave!

When it comes to my cooking, I love quick and simple meals. This is mainly because while I am making the meals, I usually have somebody crying at me and if I'm lucky, one or two children hanging off my limbs at the same time - a nightmare cooking environment. I need quick results to retain a little sanity some days and get everyone fed, especially when it comes to the kids meals or pre-work dinners. Those days are so long being up with the kids from six and rolling in from work at midnight. The slow cookercombination microwave oven and toaster are my favourite cooking tools of all. Life is far too short to be slaving over a 'hot stove' several times a day, while you miss out on all the fun things life has to offer around you.

When it comes to my kitchen, we are not exactly kindred spirits. I really want to be a great cook. I want to follow a recipe without screwing my face up in total confusion and I'd love to complete a simple cooking instruction without getting more mixed up than the ingredients themselves. Fortunately for me though, I married a man that loves cooking. This is pretty handy and something I would thoroughly recommend. I do have to cook in his absence though and I do prepare most the children's meals.

I still like to make food from scratch using fresh foods, as I prefer to know exactly what is going in, especially when it comes to salt and the dreaded sugar. I do however, rely pretty heavily on my microwave. I have zero shame in saying that it's my best buddy in the kitchen and after being without one for a few weeks last year, I really began to realise how much I use it! They are a total godsend. I also like to cook fish fingers in the toaster (yes, toaster bags!), I like to microwave my mash (microwave frozen mash is better than home made - have you tried it?) and I like to simply stick the gammon in the slow cooker with some apple juice, go to sleep and wake up to the smell of freshly baked ham, yum.

Quick or easy food really doesn't have to be dull!

As well as main meals, there are the easy snacks and bakes. Rice crispy cakes are super quick and easy to make with children, we all made them at school I'm sure and whipping up a quick batch with the microwave to melt the chocolate couldn't be easier. I am also a huge fan of the microwave mug cake, you can see my quick healthy version here, perfect if you are a slimmer needing a sweet treat.

Whatever your quick fix meals are and whatever kitchen gadget is your number one, the important thing to remember is that as long as its pretty healthy it doesn't matter how long it took to prepare. Whether it's a batch cooked re-heated goodie or some microwave in the bag veg, it's all good. As parents we all just want to do the best for our children and sometimes that time wasted in the kitchen can be much better spent having adventures or making memories.

What are your quick fix meals and snacks? Do you have a favourite 'speedy kitchen gadget'? I'd love some more ideas for those few minute meals on those busy days.

Thanks for reading,


Disclosure: This is a collaborative post. All words and editorial content are my own.