Quick meals don't have to have less taste.
You may not be the next Paul Deen or Rachel Ray, but that doesn’t mean that you too can’t whip up a gourmet tasting meal in your own home in a reasonable amount of time. Many people shy away from cooking gourmet meals because of the considerable amount of time they can take to prepare. Between grocery shopping, prepping, and then cooking the food, the entire process can be quite time-consuming. But if you have a plan and this list of handy tips, you can make gourmet meals any day of the week in considerably less time than normal.
Buy your ingredients ahead of time and in bulk
One of the most time consuming aspects of cooking gourmet meals is shopping for the ingredients. There is nothing more frustrating than running from store to store in confusion because you can’t remember which ingredients you need or you’ve decided at the very last minute to make a gourmet meal.
The first time saving step you can take is to make a list of all the ingredients that you will need and to purchase your ingredients well ahead of time. You should also buy staple ingredients like rice, pasta, sugar, cooking oils, broths, and flour in bulk. Warehouse clubs are a good place to take advantage of buying in bulk, which can also save you money.
Prep as much as possible in advance
All meals consists of underlying ingredients such as onions, bell peppers, and other fruits and vegetables that can be chopped, sliced, or diced in advanced and stored safely in the refrigerator for a number of days before being used or even frozen. One of my favorite seasonings, Garlic can be purchased minced in jars for easy quick use when you need it. By keeping items like boiled eggs, broths, and garnishes readily available and prepping other smaller non-perishable ingredients beforehand, you can save time and prepare multiple meals at once.
Use the same ingredients for multiple meals
Multi-purposing ingredients is one of the best ways that you can ensure that you save time. Purchasing larger amounts of meats such as ground beef and chicken will allow you to make multiple meals from the same products. So, if you wanted to make a roasted chicken with mango glaze one day, then consider buying enough chicken to create stuffed chicken breasts with rice later that week. Making meals that use the same ingredients will really help you to get in and out of the kitchen.
Use kitchen appliances and equipment
We all have those appliances and gadgets that we were initially excited about purchasing because of their touted benefits but have yet to use. Pull them out and make them work for you! Kitchen appliances and equipment such as microwaves, crock pots, blenders, choppers, and even freezers can all help you in your quest to cook up a quick meal. Don’t be afraid to use these tools to help you speed up the process, just be sure to read the instructions on both the recipes and the equipment.
Prepare large portions
Because cooking does take time, why not prepare larger meals so that you don’t have to cooks as often? Preparing larger meals is a really smart move if you are cooking for a large family or for a special occasion which will include a number of people. When cooking larger portions it’s important that you choose meals that will stay fresh when stored and can be easily re-served.
Call in recruits
Nothing gets a meal ready faster than extra hands. Call on your spouse, children, and friends to help you prepare your gourmet meals. Make preparing the meals an informal gathering and use the time to catch up on the latest happenings in the lives of those you care about. You can also swap recipes and other tips on how to save even more time.
Creating gourmet meals quickly is easy if you have a plan, the right ingredients, and a little inspiration.