Healthy and Fast Food
How many times have you heard that we eat too much fast food and that it's bad for us? It's been blamed for weight gain, lower intelligence, and mood swings, among other things. They could be right, but what do you do?
After a long day at work or at home, the last thing you want to do is cook for an hour or more to make an appealing and healthy dinner for your family. Here's the good news. You don't have to. You can have your cake and eat it too, in a matter of speaking.
Fast food doesn't have to mean hamburgers and fried chicken, pizza and Chinese food prepared while you stand or sit in line. You can make food fast and healthy, too, and not give up your time and energy to providing a healthy meal for your family.
It all depends on what you cook. You may not want to eat the same things every day of your life, so use the weekends (or your days off) and make food that can be frozen and thawed for a meal or part of a meal. For instance, it doesn't take any longer to cook a big pot of rice than it does to cook a small one, so cook a big one, then put the rest of it, in meal sized portions in the freezer to use the next time you want rice.
Meatloaf freezes beautifully, so make two when you make it. Bake one with a layer of foil between it and the baking pan, then freeze it in the foil. When you thaw it, just put it back in the pan and heat. All done. Baked chicken breast and beef roast work the same way.
Need some menu ideas? How about (thawed and heated) meatloaf, microwaved baked potatoes, and canned or frozen vegetables? If you work it right, you can have dinner on the table in about 15 minutes, faster than going out to get food and less tiring, too.
How about (cooked and thawed) chicken breast, a couple of cups of (cooked and thawed) rice, some mixed vegetables from a bag of frozen vegetables and a splash of soy sauce? Serve it with a salad in about 15 minutes, too.
If you don't want to rely on your freezer, zap sweet potatoes in the microwave and serve with slice deli ham and stuffed celery.
Sandwiches are always good, but to make them special, serve them hot. A beef roast, sliced and heated, then topped with melting cheese, makes a very good sandwich filling. Add tomatoes, lettuce and onion or whatever you prefer.
What about that hamburger? Make it better than fast food! Add chopped peppers, onions, garlic and cheese to a pound of ground beef, then splash a little soy sauce in it and mix well. Form hamburger patties and fry them up and you're done. Your family will think you're the best cook around.
Who needs to go out for fast food? Make it better, at home.
(On those times when you really want to eat out or you want to celebrate something, don't pay the full price, even then.)