Tuesdays are my longest days, usually beginning with homework in the mornings, followed by a full 8 hours on campus going from class to library. By the time I arrive home at almost 10 p.m., the last thing I want to do is cook. This past Tuesday, I threw one of the prepackaged meals in the crockpot sometime in the morning and let it cook all day. The cleanup was as easy as preparing dinner- using the crockpot eliminates mounds of pots, pans, and other cooking utensils. Some readers may suggest this is a lazy way of cooking, and I would reply that this isn't lazy, it's smart and revolutionary! Why work harder, when you can work smarter?
Spending a couple hours one afternoon grocery shopping and prepping the food, allowed me more time for studying, wedding planning, and for quality time with family and friends. On top of that, we still have three nights of dinner in the freezer! What has been so great about all of this, is that the other half is actually getting involved with all the cooking I have been doing. He usually likes being in the kitchen anyway, so cooking together has always been something we love to do.
Not only were these meals so helpful in keeping me organized, but my Fiance agreed that these mouth-watering recipes definitely made the list of favorites into our personal cookbook. The first recipe we put to the test was packed with vitamin C; we cooked up some juicy Orange Chicken.
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 4-6 hours on low
In the bag: Combine 1/2 green pepper, 1/2 onion, 1/2 red pepper, 1-1/2 cups carrots, 2 trimmed boneless skinless chicken breasts, 2 cloves chopped garlic, salt & pepper (to taste).
To cook: Add bagged ingredients to crockpot. Then add 1/2 cup orange juice, and 1/2 cup of water. Cook with fresh orange, halved. Can serve over rice, or with fresh stir fry veggies as a side.
We served our take of Orange Chicken with a house side salad that included a variety of unsalted nuts, fresh mushrooms, tomatoes, and a light italian dressing.
Hope you enjoy as much as we did!