Last night I actually cooked from a cookbook that isn't mine and pretty much followed the recipe exactly. I never do that! I was making some basics; quinoa, a big pot of pressure-cooked black beans, and water sauteed greens and thought to myself "this meal needs something". I have quite a few cookbooks on the shelves that haven't even been browsed through. I grabbed the Meat Lover's Meatless Cookbook, which was sent to me a while back from the publisher, and took a look through it. I thought this book would give me something my meat-loving dad would enjoy but not one recipe looked good to me. I'm not a fan of how the book is laid out either, so it went back on the shelf.
Then I reached for Appetite For Reduction by Isa Chandra Moskowitz. Since I was making black beans that is where I started in the index. Red Velvet Mole sounded really good. I mentally crossed my fingers that I would have all the ingredients. Lo and behold I had everything but a few things! That would work.
This recipe was super quick and delicious. Since I keep a well-stocked pantry and spice rack (something I suggest to everyone!) I had all but the allspice and tortilla strips. They were not even needed. Above is the sauce simmering (sorry for the crappy phone photo, my nice cam is at the bf's house). I cut the simmering time from 10 minutes to 5 because that is all it needed really. Blended it until smooth with a pinch of salt and it was ready to go. My dad liked it so much he had seconds.
What I always suggest to people that have a hard time cooking for themselves or making time is to keep most the plate simple then include one "fancy" thing that may take more time or attention. I usually try to have a grain, plant protein, and lots of veggies on my plate at each meal. I put the beans in the pressure cooker (which had been soaking 6 hours, took 12 minutes to cook), started the quinoa (which took 25 minutes), chopped my veggies, started the sauce (took 15 minutes total to make), then water sauteed the veggies. Everything was done in 30 minutes. A hearty, nutritious meal in 30 minutes is possible for everyone. Just remember to keep it simple!
What are some of your go to recipes for when you want dinner on the table fast? Do you ever eat a simple plate like the one above with a delicious sauce on top?