It is a very rewarding feeling to have my whole family sit down to a healthy, homemade meal. Yet I find planning and preparing said meal really challenging. At present, I am juggling working part time, full time motherhood of two, and a husband with a busy work/school schedule. Every time I cook, I marvel at what a time commitment it can be!
So I’m a big fan of articles that promote “10 nutritious meals” or “Healthy meals in 30 minutes or less!” I mean half the challenge is coming up with a meal idea! To that end, I want to share five healthy meal ideas that are crowd pleasers chez Landry.
This squash dish is intended as an appetizer, so to change it to an entree, I buy full baguettes and cut them into poboy size length, slice them in half, and heap on the squash mixture and cheese. This makes the finished product essentially an open faced vegetarian sandwich. Yummy! And before you turn your nose up at eating cauliflower, let me tell you of my recent love affair with this vegetable. Turns out it is delicious simply steamed. But throw in lemon juice, garlic and roast it all together, and you’ve got one tasty, healthy treat!
An easy, healthy, weekly staple could be a spiced up salad one night a week. This recipe is one example. Roasted butternut squash is simple and another vegetable that is ridiculously rich and yummy. You simply cut it up and throw it in a roasting pan with olive oil, salt and pepper. Cranberries (I substituted dried cherries), nuts, and a few other ingredients make this a hearty and flavorful salad. You could also roast sweet potato for another version of this salad.
This one takes a little more time because you must pan fry the eggplant before you assemble and bake. But if you haven’t eaten fried eggplant lately, you are really missing out! I think the extra time is worthwhile if you make this in a 9×13 baking dish as you’ll have leftovers for multiple meals.
We have 7 chickens in our backyard so we look for ways to put our eggs to good use. A frittata is a straightforward recipe that is delicious for breakfast, brunch, or dinner which can be altered in many ways. We started with Yotam Ottolenghi’s smoky cauliflower fritatta from his cookbook Plenty, but have also substituted bacon and squash when we were in a “meatier” mood.
Lamb sliders and Sweet Potato Fries
If you’ve never had a lamb burger, they are quite tasty! I forget where we first encountered these, but we learned fast that a nice sweet roll or yeast roll as a bun really makes these something special. As a side, you can serve sweet potato fries – something we make a lot of at our house. We cut up a sweet potato into wedges and toss in olive oil and salt. Cook them for 15-20 minutes on 500° until they are crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. Another idea for a side is roasted butternut squash. I peel the squash, cut it into cubes, and then toss liberally with olive oil, salt, and pepper. I roast the squash on 400° for 25-35 minutes. As I mentioned above, roasted squash is rich and buttery – a perfect side for many meals!