I knew this meal would come in handy. It’s from Sam’sClub, a Members Mark Meatloaf and Mashed Potatoes meal I had tucked away in the freezer. Although itserves two, we aren’t big eaters and this makes 4 servings for us. I will use the Reheat setting on my air fryer oven for half the (thawed) package, refrigerating the remaining half.
I plan to add a side vegetable (today it’s the last of the carrots) each day. Tomorrow I may add sliced tomatoes because they are ripe and I don’t want to lose them.
Leave a comment andshare what you’re doing for quarantine cuisine. Stay safe!
Day #1 wasn’t challenging as I had stocked up Tuesday with a pickup order from Walmart.Today I found myself with aging produce and a pound of ground turkey nearing its sell-by date.
Lunch is typically our main meal, so today I used these items to make two large servings of fiesta salad. It may contain Fritos chips, but it’s surprisingly healthful.
Basically a salad of chopped lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and (optional) cilantro, the only cooking was browning the ground turkey. The cheese sauce was cheddar cheese soup heated in the microwave oven, thinned with 1/4 cup milk.
According to my recipe builder, we each ate 556 calories, including 57 g. protein and 18 g. fat. and 6.2 g fiber. It’s a fun dish as well as a good use-up of produce.
It’s early in the month, so we’ll see how the thirty-day challenge progresses. So how’s your quarantine going?
We love all meat yet try to limit our consumption of red meats. So I developed a recipe for beef stew that uses only half a pound of meat. By adding a pound of mushrooms, I boost theumami taste. I sneak in more vegetables, too.
This is a pressure cooker recipe that’s easily adapted to slow cooking. By using the pressure cooker, we get that cooked all day flavor in about half an hour.
Beef and Mushroom Stew
Makes 4 one-cup servings
1/2 pound beef (chuck or round works) cut into 1” chunks
1 pound mushrooms, sliced and cleaned
1 cup broth + 1 Tbsp (reserved for slurry)
2 tsp. Oil
1 onion, chopped
2 carrots, sliced
2 small red or gold potatoes, sliced or cubed
2 ribs celery, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced or sliced
1 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
1 Tbsp cornstarch
Freshly ground pepper
Preheat cooker pot.
Generously salt and pepper the beef.
Brown the beefon all sides, then remove from pot and set aside.
Sautéonions, garlic, and mushrooms 1 minute.
Add cup of broth, deglaze bottom of pot, and return the beef to the cooker.
Seal and cook under high pressure for 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, prepare slurry by combining Worcestershire sauce, reserved broth, and cornstarch.
Remove pot from heat (or hit Cancel if using electric) and allow pressure to drop on its own.
Carefully open pot and add potatoes and carrots. Reseal.
Bring to pressure and cook 1 minute under pressure.
Remove from heat, allow pressure to drop 5 minutes on its own, then release remaining pressure.
Carefully open the cooker and checkvegetables for doneness.
Stir slurry again right before adding it to the pot. Return to heat (or use sautémode on electric models) just until sauce thickens.
Remove from heat immediately and check for seasonings. Add salt and pepper if needed and serve.
Adding fresh chopped parsleybefore serving adds flavor. Unfortunately, I was out of parsley when I cooked this stew today. Next time …
I watch cooking infomercials. I’m a sucker for new cooking gadgets. But my latest purchase, the NuWave Bravo XL Smart Oven, is the best of my purchases. (Full disclosure: I got mine through Amazon* because I wasn’t interested in the “free” premiums. But they’re a good deal if you don’t already have a pizza kit and a pressure cooker.)
I made room for the new oven by re-homing my 6 quart Power Air Fryer Oven to a friend. Much as I liked that product, I much prefer this one for five reasons:
It carries a one year warranty vs. a 60 day warranty.
It’s stainless steel instead of plastic.
It’s wider, accommodating much of my regular bake ware.
It’s more multi-functional, with 12 presets.
It has a built in temperature probe that automatically shuts off the oven when food reaches the desired temperature.
As an air fryer, it’s great. My first effort was frozen breaded shrimp and frozen crinkle fries. I did not spray with oil, as was suggested. After selecting Air Fry on the menu, I cooked the shrimp and fries ten minutes at 400°. We gave the meal a thumbs-up.
Air fryer shrimp and fries.
Next I baked frozen chicken breasts using the temperature probe. (I had to allow about 30 minutes thawing before I managed inserting the probe, so it works better with unfrozen food). It’s tricky cooking white meat poultry to a safe temperature without drying it out, which is why the temperature probe feature attracted me. When the oven shut off, the meat was perfectly cooked.
Cooking frozen chicken breast
I tried a frozen pizza (it fit!), toast, hash brown patties, burgers, and a dinner plate reheat (worked just like restaurants). I’ve barely scratched the surface of what this appliance can do. I’ve used my Pampered Chef stoneware, my stainless, and my NordicWare pans. If a pan is safe for a regular oven and fits, it can be used in the NuWave Bravo XL.
The capacity is one cubic feet, making it a bit larger than its closest competitor (and the competition carries only a 90 day warranty). Suffice it to say, I am sold on this oven and recommend it without reservation.
*NUWAVE BRAVO XL 1800-watt Air Fry Convection Oven with Flavor Infusion (FIT) Technology with Integrated Temperature Probe for Perfect Results; 12 Pre-Programmed Presets; 3 Fan Speeds; 5-Quartz Heating Elements