I’ve posted, more than once, about cooking being a comforting experience. I like taking the time to focus on choosing ingredients, figuring out what I’m doing, chopping, dicing, stirring, watching. Its 10, 20, 45 minutes to focus on something outside of your own head. Sure there is laundry to be done, of course there is probably a bill that needs to be paid, or a schedule to stress over; but for those previous minutes just focus on the one recipe at hand.
Thankfully, yesterday I had the time to tackle two recipes. I went my usual route of Google-ing various ingredients or themes that sounded good, found a few recipes and then never looked back at them. I don’t measure, I don’t second guess; this makes it nearly impossible when people ask me for recipes, I apologize in advance.
Beef and Butternut Squash Chili
I diced up about half of that onion, and sauteed that and garlic in some coconut oil. I’m making a serious effort to cut down on anything refined, artificial, processed etc. Whole foods, clean, primal, paleo; whatever you want to call it, I feel better about my body when I know exactly whats going into it about 80% of the time.
This is why I went with the organic, pasture finished beef that seemed like the best choice on the shelf. The beef was added to the pot once the onions were just softened a bit.
Browned the beef, then added diced butternut squash, canned tomatoes, carrots, and a splash of chicken broth.
Again, I tried to choose the better options from the shelf.
Mixed everything in the pot with some chili powder, cumin, pepper, and garlic powder. Covered it with a lid and let it simmer while I started on my second recipe.
Lemon Ginger Chicken Soup
I wanted a lot of flavor, but a relatively simple soup. So I diced/minced/sliced a bunch of shallot, onion, garlic, and ginger to be sauteed in coconut oil. Once they were fragrant, I added thinly sliced zuchinni and a bag of matchstick sliced carrots (these are my favorite shortcut of all time). I let those soften just a tiny bit, before adding chicken broth.
I know I can make chicken broth on my own that would be less processed/healthier/better etc. etc. but those words are subjective and I’m not living in my own kitchen so time and space are more valuable commodities right now.
While the soup was simmering, I shredded a rotisserie chicken (“all natural”, purchased cold) into the pot.
Added a dash of Five Spice, some Braggs Liquid Aminos, and the juice of two lemons. Then simmer, simmer, simmer, simmer.
These two pots yielded a lot of food. Some will be taken straight to the office, some eaten for dinners, and maybe some frozen if necessary. But I got to focus on just cooking, just stirring, just chopping for about an hour, which will result in quick meals throughout the week. Win-Win.