Cooking for a soon to be Army has been increasingly demanding as the kids grow up on us. My oldest can eat 4 slices of pizza by himself and don’t get me started on when I make waffles or pancakes. Zaine has a lumberjack appetite as well, so I have to make “man food”. With several mouths and guts to make happy, I usually find myself running out of ideas especially since some of these folks are picky eaters. I turned to Pinterest and Food Network for help in the creativity department. After several Pinterest fails, I have learned that it is best to K.I.S.S (KEEP IT SIMPLE STUPID). I like fool proof, quick and easy meals that require little to no meal prep. I LOVE food and love to eat, I also enjoy cooking…just not when I have to make a shitload of food. I swap recipes pretty frequently with several of my other “mommy friends”. Recipe swapping is a great and quick way to find out who can’t cook worth a damn and who is just plain weird when it come to the food department.
I have high blood pressure so I have to be careful about some of my food selections. I try to make the majority of my meals so I can control the salt/sodium content. I haven’t had to be put on any medications since I altered my diet and became more active. My high blood pressure was first noticed during my first pregnancy, and just hung around after that. I feel like complete shit when it spikes, but luckily I keep it under control pretty well. With cooking I have to be selective when it comes to seasonings. I always look at the sodium content. I use a lot of herbs and seasonings such as Ms. Dash and some of Flavor God’s seasonings. I did not totally eliminate salt, because well you need salt…in moderation. I opt for Himalayan Pink Salt over regular table salt for cooking because it’s sodium levels are a little lower. I also buy heart smart versions of products such as pasta sauces, soy sauce etc (pretty much things I consume frequently) to watch my intake as well. I take my health seriously although I am not like a health nut.
With minor dietary restrictions it is easier to make everyone eat the same rather than making separate meals. I am not with that shit. I am not a short order cook. One of my favorite meals to make, is a casserole. Chicken, cheese, rice, and broccoli casserole. It is FOOL-PROOF and falls under my K.I.S.S Recipes. Along the way I will share a few different dinnertime favorites of my family that are beyond easy to make. No fancy culinary skills needed. Watching Chopped has made me feel like I can cook any damn thing.
Here is what you will need:
(keep in mind you can use more or less but it freezes and makes some bomb ass leftovers)
4 or more cups of sharp cheddar cheese
Non-Stick spray (such as PAM)
13X9 pyrex or glass baking dish , a large bowl or pot for mixing everything together
1lb (pound) of diced and cooked chicken breast (season how you would like)
4 cups of cooked white or brown rice
22.6 oz (ounce) or the large can of cream of mushroom soup (any brand you want) + plus half a can of water (I know the can says +1 one can full but I don’t like soupy casserole)
1 regular size bag of frozen broccoli cuts *stem this after the rice and chicken are done* (I prefer stem in bag…Less dishes)
Okay so another tidbit about me is that I cook by “feeling” I do not measure seasonings etc. I just add, taste, add some more or omit.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees
Mix all of the cooked ingredients, as much cheese as you would like, can of soup, plus half can of water together along with you seasonings *salt, pepper etc)
Spoon into pyrex or glass baking dish that has been sprayed with non-stick spray and top with cheese. I always sprinkle a lil paprika and parsley on top for that Food Network appeal
Bake until cheese is melted and bubbly or slightly crisp whichever you prefer.
Let it cool a bit and then spoon that shit out and serve! I like to have some type of dinner roll on the side. Enjoy!