Basics, Cooking, Essentials, Food, Tools

Tools 101: Mezzaluna

You have new kitchen toys, hooray! Now, what the heck do you do with them?

This series features some ideas to get you cooking – and eating – asap!

Now: to the chopping block!

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Meet your mezzaluna

Italian for “half-moon,” this tool gives new meaning to chopped salads. Using a smooth rocking motion, effortlessly chop large amounts of lettuce, veggies & herbs all in one bowl for an easy and even chopped salad.

What’s it for?

  • Makes mincing piles of herbs a breeze
  • Can be used for chopping nuts or chocolate for baking
  • Allows for even chopping
  • Works well as a pizza cutter

How to clean

Use a soft sponge with warm soap and water. Dry with a clean dish towel or air dry. Do not put in the dishwasher.

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Tips

Make one or two big salads for this week’s lunches & dinners! It’s an easy way to make sure you have veggies this week.

IMG_0853Happy eating!

Get cooking! Use offer code “BACK2COOKING” for 10% off your first month!

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Cooking, Essentials, Food, Kitchen

Ingredients 101: Easy, Affordable Cooking

Keep these staple ingredients on hand for cooking, and always have an easy, affordable meal at your fingertips!

Proteins

danielle-macinnes-676245-unsplashEggs: Cheap, satisfying staple for hearty breakfasts, lunches and easy dinners. Plus top any pasta with an egg for rich deliciousness! More egg tips here.

Lentils: Hearty, energy-boosting and protein-packed for easy salads, stews and more.

Ground beef: Easy to prepare and versatile. Cook a bunch at once, using half for tacos and the rest for a hearty meat sauce the following night.

Chicken thighs: A great affordable and flavorful option. Buy in bulk on sale and freeze for up to 6 months.

Grains

andrea-tummons-448848-unsplashOatmeal: Cook a bunch of steel-cut oats at the beginning of the week, along with some easy stewed cinnamon apples. You can also add sliced banana during the last few minutes of the oatmeal cooking for a yummy treat. Adults and kids love oatmeal! Try easy overnight oatmeal too to simplify your mornings.

Brown rice: Versatile for simple grain salads, soups, sides and healthy rice pudding. Always have a batch ready to eat in your fridge.

Quinoa: Great for breakfast bowls, easy side for grilled meat or tossed with leftover veggies for a simple lunch.

Pasta: Easy, no-fuss meals with tomato sauce, simple butter sauce, pesto and seasonal veggies. Also pasta for breakfast makes waking up easier.

Fruit & Veg

jessica-lewis-512219-unsplashFruits: Always have apples, grapes, bananas, and berries for yogurt, smoothies, oatmeal and more. Keep an apple or pear sliced and ready to eat so you’re more likely to grab that when you mindlessly poke around for a snack.

img_2572.jpgStaple Veggies: Always have carrots, sweet potatoes, broccoli/cauliflower, and/or butternut squash. All of these will last a while, so you don’t need to stress out about using them right away. Just keep the carrots, broccoli & cauliflower clean and ready to use in your crisper. The potatoes and squash can stay out at room temperature until they’re cut.

chiara-conti-505587-unsplashGreens: Always have fresh greens on hand! Spinach is the best for versatility, but arugula, kale and others are nice to switch things up, especially if you like things a bit more flavorful!

Pro tip:

Don’t forget the freezer! Keep it stocked with frozen veggies, which are flash frozen at their peak for healthy deliciousness year-round!

Happy cooking!

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Basics, Cooking

Eggs 101

Simple foods make every day delicious.

Aside from being Insta-worthy, adding an egg to raw veggies helps you retain more of the veggies’ nutrients. Let us help you master eggs to create a world of tasty, easy meals!

Fried Eggs

Why fried eggs?

Fried eggs not only look pretty when you cut into the oozing yolk, but they make dishes richer and more delicious. Add to sandwiches, salads, pasta and rice bowls to enjoy an extra protein punch and a rich, velvety taste.

How long will it last?

Fried eggs are best cooked to order. Invest in a small nonstick skillet for quick, easy frying.

How to

You want a well-oiled nonstick pan. Using a spray can will help coat the pan evenly without making it too greasy, but you can also use your olive oil bottle, coconut oil or butter (approx 1 tbsp) if you prefer.

Heat the pan over medium or medium-low heat. Medium-low is usually best, but stoves can vary. If you crack the egg in and it starts to bubble, the pan is too hot; lower the heat.

Sunny Side Up

sunnyside.jpgCook 1 minute at medium, then lower heat to medium-low or low, cover, and cook another 4 minutes for sunny side up, 5 minutes for medium, 6 minutes for hard. Covering traps the steam, gently cooking the top.

Over Easy

overeasy1Cook 1 minute until outside white is set, then flip for another 1-2 minutes.

Over Medium or Over Hard

Cook 3-4 minutes per side.

Boiled Eggs

Why boiled eggs?

Hard boiled eggs are a great healthy snack and addition to salads and sandwiches, and we like soft or medium boiled eggs for breakfast bowls.

How long will it last?

Hard-boiled eggs can last up to a week in the refrigerator; medium-boiled and soft-boiled eggs should be cooked to order.

How to

Put cold eggs (with shell still on) in a single layer in a saucepan and cover with water. Cover. Set pan to medium-high.

hardboiledHard boiled

Is this for me?

If you like a nice firm yolk.

How to

When water bubbles, reduce heat to a slight simmer for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat. With a slotted spoon, remove each egg and place into an ice cold water bath (ice cubes + water in a big bowl). Leave the eggs there until cool enough to touch, then peel.

Medium boiled

Is this for me?

If you like a soft yolk that’s not runny.

How to

See above, but simmer for 6 minutes.

Soft boiled

Is this for me?

If you like that Insta-worthy runny yolk.

How to

See above, but simmer for 4-5 minutes.

Pro Tips:

  • Only add salt & pepper to the finished eggs. Crush sea salt in your fingers as you sprinkle over the top, and add fresh cracked pepper if you’d like.
  • Serving eggs for brunch? Include a variety of salsas and hot sauces on the side, with optional avocado.
  • For egg sandwiches, start by assembling everything but the eggs. The hot eggs will melt any cheese you added to your bread, so you can eat as soon as the eggs are ready!