Introducing the Basics category – Ideas to help you with your weekly meal planning.
My friends and co-workers often tell me they love that I cook all the time but they don’t because they can’t seem to find the time. While I’m the first to admit that cooking can be time-consuming, with a little planning you can easily cook a couple of fabulous meals each week at home.
One option to help with planning is to use a weekly meal planning worksheet or program. While I like the concept, every time I’ve tried it I’ve ended up with extra food for the week because I never actually followed it exactly. Perhaps I’m not too good at following “instructions”?!
So, what are “Basics”?
Instead of giving you a fixed plan with specific recipes for the week, I wanted to provide flexible options to help plan your meals for the week, so I’ve added a Basics recipe category to the blog. And what will you find in the Basics category?
I originally thought I’d create cross-reference page that you could check back in on periodically to get ideas for how to use different ingredients and basic recipes, but then I realized that it would probably be more useful and easier for you to navigate if I just created a category called Basics, which will include some staple recipes along with links for ideas as to how to use them throughout the week.
Basics recipes will also appear in my weekly newsletter, so if you want to make sure you don’t miss any of them be sure to sign up here!
I’d love to hear what you think of this new category and learn more about the types of recipes you’d like to see included.
A Simple Cranberry Sauce for the Holidays
I’m kicking off the Basics category with this simple cranberry sauce that’s perfect as a holiday side. It can also be used in this Quinoa Breakfast Parfait and is great with warm brie for an easy holiday appetizer.
notes from the kitchen
- Keep a close eye on the cranberries as they are cooking. They will start to pop quickly so you want to be sure you remove from the heat just before they reach your desired consistency. They will thicken up as they cool.
- This sauce freezes fairly well, so I often pop half of it in the freezer for later use.
This traditional cranberry sauce gets some extra tanginess from the addition of fresh orange juice and orange zest.
- 1 cup sugar
- 3/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
- 1 12 ounce bag fresh cranberries
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon orange zest
- Add sugar, water and orange juice to a medium saucepan. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until the sugar dissolves. Continue cooking for 2-3 minutes until small bubbles begin to form at the edges of the pan.
- Reduce the heat to medium and add the cranberries and salt. Cook for 5-7 minutes, stirring frequently. The cranberries will begin to pop as they cook. Continue cooking until desired consistency is reached.
- Remove from heat and stir in the orange zest. Let cool before serving.
If you are serving as a side dish you can add a splash of ruby port when you add the orange zest.