Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Cooking Tips - Shortcuts!

Even though I Llve cooking, there are still days when I am too busy or too tired to create a wonderful meal for my family - and that's when I use my little "cheats". I would love to hear yours - leave a comment below. I'll share a few of mine here and hopefully learn a few new ones from my readers!

1. Pastry. I never make my own, I think life is too short! Ready made all the way for me. I like to keep a pack of puff in the freezer, as a quick pie top or to make some quick sausage rolls or a pudding.

2. Condensed soup - I have been known to use a tin of condensed soup as a pie filling or a pasta sauce, with some cooked chicken & frozen veg added. Not something I use often, but it is a great standby for when you really cant rustle up your own sauce.

3. Microwaved jacket potatoes - I do then top them up in the oven for 10 minutes, as I like a crispy skin. 10 minutes in the micro wave and then 10 in the oven = perfect potato!

4. Ready grated cheese. Yes, I do admit to buying this! So easy to be  able to grab a handful of cheese when you need it, and without messing up the grater.

5. Ready made custard. I buy the fresh, "posh" ones from the chiller section. I have never made my own <blushes>. A link to a simple but tasty recipe would be appreciated!

6. Frozen food. I have a massive chest freezer, and I keep it quite full. Half is frozen meat that I have bought cheap & meals that I have made & frozen as standbys. The other half is potatoes/vegetables/kids food that I can whip out for a fuss-free dinner. I quite like frozen peas/sweetcorn and green beans, usually I am fussy with my veg (insisting that it is fresh) but these I make allowances for.

Aunt Bessies make great roast potatoes that you can keep in the freezer and use when you need to. My kids love roasties, but I don't always have hours to prepare them myself. No need to skimp on taste, you can just whip these out & bung in the oven. Great if you are looking for a stress-free Christmas dinner this year! I will have some Christmas meal ideas coming soon, so please check back.


  1. I also chuck a tin of soup as a pie filling. I also do a chicken, carrot, leek and mushroom casserole that features a tin of mushroom soup as the base. I always get rave reviews for that dish.... (hmm)

  2. Ready made pastry rocks - I always have it in the freezer too