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Menu Planning & Recipes

Dorene's BeyondDiets Blog

Entries in meal planning (4)


You CAN Still Learn to Cook!

I consider myself a good cook, and a pretty good baker. I remember my mom having me “get dinner started” before she got home from work when I was just eight or nine. We didn’t know that we were latch-key kids; grandmother lived next door. It was 1967. To me cooking assignments were fun and I liked being helpful (and probably feeling like I was more grown up than my brothers).

As a weight management specialist—for nineteen years now—I’ve long been aware that cooking skills have a lot to do with eating choices. For good or bad we pass our skill, or lack of skill, to our children.

Recently, I read a book that got me thinking more about my own cooking skills: The Kitchen Counter Cooking School--How a Few Simple Lessons Transformed Nine Culinary Novices into Fearless Home Cooks, by Kathleen Flinn.

Like the nine novice cooks in the book, I cook a lot like my mom. For instance, since reading the book I noticed that while I know how to roast, or sauté, fresh veggies, I often warm up frozen veggies in the microwave. Maybe that’s because like most of us I feel time-constrained, and I already have the entrée to deal with. On the other hand, mom used mostly frozen veggies. Thankfully, they are a healthy choice that we needn’t feel bad about! Still, more roasted veggies will be showing up on our dinner table.

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Menu Planning--Dealing with eating styles, weight loss, and pickiness

You may have already found Why Plan a Weekly Menu on my website. If so, I wonder if you clicked on it, or if your eyes glazed over?

I haven’t met too many people these days that plan ahead with a weekly menu. Still, I am going to try to convince you that it’s worth your time and has all kinds of benefits.

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6 Keys to Mastering the Evening Meal

Part One: Keys 1 & 2

Mealtime, a once honored and treasured family experience, has become challenging with our demanding and fast-paced lives. Between the demands of work, time spent commuting, responsibilities as a parent, etc., etc.; it is often hard to find the time or energy for preparing a meal. Cooking, however, can actually be a pleasant way to unwind and can have, as its end, a nutritious and satisfying meal that everyone will enjoy.

If you buy into the goal of getting a healthy and nutritious meal on the table for your family, then let’s explore six keys (just the first two today) for making mealtime an experience that you’ll look forward to and enjoy.

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3 Great Reasons Why to Plan a Weekly Menu in Advance!

1. Saves money: you shop based on what you already know you're cooking. Less produce goes to waste, because you buy mainly what you know you will use.

2. Saves time: We're always more effiicent when we shop from a list.

3. Your familiy eats healthier meals: When you plan ahead (and not on a hungry stomach) you will make healthier plans, than when you are running into the store on the way home from work. This of course assumes that you are planning things that are made at home--cooking/preparing yourself--instead of grabbing take-out.

How we do it: Sometimes I sit down and preplan the whole month, and other times I just plan a week or two in advance. This is much less work than you think, because we (people) are very routine in our eating patterns, so you will want to eat things that are your favorites, including things that are (read more...)

All the best!