Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Chilly Weather Chili

Are you a creature of habit?  I am.  Some good habits, some not so good, and always seekingto add or adjust a habit, especially around the new year time.  Over the past few weeks I have taken to cooking up a storm over the weekend.  We are home more, there is extra time to prepare slower-cooked meals and quite honestly I have the time to think about what to make.  Our weekdays run rather intense at the end of the day.  There is pick-up at our preschool, then pick up at the elementary school, both kids are tired and more often than not, starved. It is not uncommon for us to literally fall in the door from the garage.  Landing in the kitchen, thoughts immediately turn to dinner.  But dinner at 4:45 or 5pm? Yes....and the faster the better.

A staple of my weekend cookahtons is roasted meat, usually chicken or turkey, sometimes a slow-cooker pork.  We have a warm meal with veggies, then I cut up pieces for sandwiches or chicken salad for the my lunch over the week.  And there is always plenty to make a chili.  Onions, garlic, olive oil, chili powder, a few cans of tomato sauce, canned tomatoes, meat from the roasting project, and then random, on-hand veggies such as corn or spinach.

That huge pot of chili provides many easy, frugal and healthy meals in the week that follows.  Take tonight for example.  With one child battling another virus, the kids wanted buttered toast, fruit, yogurt and for our son, his current staple.....a bowl of Special Kay Protein cereal.  My meal was a heated bowl of chili with cheese sprinkled on top.  The perfect quick meal for a gray day here in Madison, one that offered up various stages of freezing, chunky rain.  Chili -- oh I am so glad I whipped up a pot last Sunday!

What is a staple frugal meal in your kitchen?  As the seasons change, so do our staple dishes.  While we are creatures of habit, we do enjoy trying something new sometime, so please leave a comment if you have a suggestion.

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