Gone are the days when women could spend all day in the kitchen preparing meals for the family along with doing the washing, ironing and cleaning. Today most women and men have to work full time to be able to afford the bills that keep dropping onto the mat or into the email inbox. For those who are in a relationship and who have children to care for, the tasks in the household have to be shared out equally and it could be either partner who spends time in the kitchen and doing the shopping. So, what then are the top tips for saving time in the kitchen when it comes to meal preparation and cooking?
Having meals that are easy to prepare as well as being nutritious is a must for a busy family. It is far too easy to grab convenience foods when you are in a rush and everyone is hungry. Pre-cooking some food stuffs and freezing them is one way to solve this problem. Jacket potatoes can be cooked and kept in the fridge or freezer to be reheated in the microwave or the air fryer and rice can also be cooked and frozen in portions as long as it is frozen straightaway and reheated until piping hot.
A slow cooker is a godsend when you want a hot meal as you get home and can be used for stews, curries and chillis to name a few. A whole joint of pork can be cooked in the slow cooker with a tasty barbeque sauce providing a lovely quick meal of pulled pork which can be served on crusty bread rolls or with jacket potatoes and pre-made coleslaw.
Most ovens have a timer facility so that a chicken or joint of meat can be cooked when you are out. On your return it will simply be a case of cooking the vegetables as an accompaniment. Frozen vegetables are as nutritious as fresh vegetables but cook in a fraction of the time so it is worth keeping the freezer stocked up with a good variety.
Frozen fruit is great to have for a speedy dessert as it can be defrosted in the microwave and used as a topping for ice cream or yogurt. It is delicious to have the fruit on top of a meringue nest as the sweetness of the meringue counteracts the tartness of the fruit.