Have any good and relatively easy recipes

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by Andrew07, Jul 7, 2008.

  1. Andrew07 macrumors 6502

    Apr 25, 2007
    So I'm livin all by myself for the first time-no roommate, no girlfriend nothin. And I've learned I'm not a very good cook. I refuse to eat junk
    or microwave foods but my cooking skills are limited to
    buying some meat, chicken, or fish and simply cooking it with salt and pepper

    So do you have any good and relatively easy recipes? Maybe
    a favorite cookbook you could recommend?
  2. montanachad macrumors regular


    Jul 7, 2008
    Helena, Montana and Lacey, Washington
    Tonight I cooked organic free-range chicken (the whole thing) in the oven. On the chicken I put Italian seasoning, red pepper ground, sea salt, and olive oil. Total cooking time was about 1 1/2 hours. While the chicken was cooking I made organic basmatti rice, organic white corn on the cob.

    Cooking rice over the stove is easy, but can be a skill. Put a couple cups of rice into a pot; add water to over the top of the rice, about two inches; and now bring to boil; cover and turn heat down to low. Doing the corn was even easier.

    Husk the corn, meaning pull off the green leaves. Put corn into water and turn up to medium high heat. Simply heat the corn. Eat with your favorite seasoning and/or butter.

    Now I need to clean up! :eek:
  3. Leareth macrumors 68000


    Nov 11, 2004
    One of my favorite recipes:

    1 bag egg noodles - cook as per instructions, drain, add to pot with noodles:
    1 can cream of mushroom soup ( or 1 cup if you make from scratch)
    1 cup shredded mixed cheeses ( I sometimes add up to 2 cups)
    1/2 cup mushrooms (optional)
    1 cup ground beef or baked chicken pieces (optional)
    mix all together
    add to baking dish
    and bake for 15 minutes at 375F
    add more cheese on top bake until melted/

    this can feed one for a couple day or 4 in one sitting,

    tastes better the next day.
  4. r1ch4rd macrumors 6502a


    Aug 5, 2005
    Manchester UK
    2 really easy ones off the top of my head.

    Fry some prawns with fresh red chilli, garlic and lime juice (max 3 minutes in a hot pan). Season and add a knob of butter and then mix with spaghetti. Done.

    Mix equal parts rice wine vinegar and soy sauce. Grate a good thumb of fresh ginger and squeeze out the liquid into the mix. Marinate some salmon and cook under the grill. Yum.
  5. TwinCities Dan macrumors 603

    TwinCities Dan

    May 19, 2008
    Double Parked out front of the Courthouse
    One of my personal Favorites:

    1 box Kraft Macaroni & Cheese, 1 can Tuna, Mix. Mmmm....

    (Damn, now I'm hungry) :)
  6. themadchemist macrumors 68030


    Jan 31, 2003
    Chi Town
    As a guy who also lives by himself, let me let you in on a little secret.

    Bread and pasta are your friends. They are a blank canvas and very easy to paint on.

    Pasta + your favorite pasta sauce will get you a lot of mileage. If you get bored, throw in some vegetables (or if you're a carnie, some meat) and add some spices.

    Bread + any vegetable/sauce/meat you like will also serve you well.

    The two above categories of food ought to allow for a pretty decent variety at least half to three quarters of the time. The rest of the time you can split between more ambitious endeavors and eating out.
  7. Surely Guest


    Oct 27, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    A great salad:
    -A bag of shredded coleslaw (without the dressing)
    - A can of tuna or some cold cooked chicken
    -some cottage cheese
    -a bottle of Newman's Own Honey Mustard Light dressing

    Mix the tuna/chicken with the coleslaw. Add the dressing. Mix so there is dressing on everything. Add a few tablespoons of cottage cheese.

    A pasta sauce. This sauce recipe can be prepared in 15 minutes:
    -olive oil
    -1/3 of a large onion
    -a couple cloves of garlic
    -3-4 mushrooms or one big portobello
    -3-4 pieces of sundried tomatoes
    -half a pound of ground chicken or beef (lean)
    -pepper, parsley, garlic powder, salt, oregano
    -jar of tomato sauce (I prefer Ragu Original or 365 Brand Roasted Red Pepper)
    -tube of pesto (I buy it at Whole Foods and it is very low in fat)

    Dice onions. Cut garlic cloves. Cut mushroom.
    Put some olive oil in a skillet, heat. Add onions and garlic. Cook a few minutes. Add ground chicken. Cook until no longer raw.
    Add mushrooms and sundried tomatoes.
    Cook until the liquid boils off and chicken and onions are slightly browned. Turn off burner.
    Add jar of sauce once it has cooled for 2 minutes to avoid bubbling and splashing. Add a couple tablespoons of pesto. Add a pinch of pepper, oregano, garlic powder, parsley. Stir. Turn burner back on, cover sauce. Let it simmer for 10-15 minutes.
    Now you have two choices:
    1)You can boil your pasta and eat it right away.
    2)you can make it earlier in the day (or the day before), cool it down, put it in the fridge, and warm it back up when it's time for dinner. I find it tastes better if you prepare it early and allow the meat to soak up the sauce.

    Chicken Fajitas:

    Cut up some onions and green pepper. Cut up a couple breast of chicken. Put a little soy sauce and garlic powder on the raw chicken.
    Saute onions peppers and chicken.
    Open up a can of black beans, drain and rinse, and heat up in a small skillet.
    Mash a couple of avocados and mix with olive oil and some garlic powder.
    Open a jar of salsa.
    Warm up tortilla shells in microwave for 15 seconds.
    Shredded cheese (optional)

    I think those are pretty easy, and are my fall-back recipes when I'm too lazy to cook anything more complicated.
  8. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Jul 16, 2002
    Here's one of my favorite very quick, very easy, and quite good no-brainer meals:

    Can of salmon
    One egg
    Spices (whatever you like)
    Bread crumbs (made yourself or prepared)

    Mix them all together. Fashion into two patties, like hamburgers. Fry in a pan with butter and olive oil until browned.

    I like to serve them on a bed of couscous, which is also ridiculously easy and fast to make. This entire meal takes about 15 minutes, from start to finish.
  9. gregdrummeraz macrumors 6502

    Jun 7, 2007
    Glendale, az
    Frkn grilled cheese dude..... oh, and uh cheese crisps... you get everything good for you there :rolleyes: :D
  10. brendanryder macrumors 6502a


    Dec 28, 2006
    so obtain:
    lemon juice
    soup crackers
    and brownsugar

    place salmon in tinfoil and put that on the cookie sheet.
    put some lemon juice on the salmon.
    cook have way, sorry i dont know the real specs cus my mom usually makes it :p
    take it out and sprinkle on some brownsugar.
    crush up soup crackers and make a nice even layer on the salmon.
    put it back in until its cooked.
    take it out and add a little more lemon juice and brownsugar.

    the brownsugar makes it taste so much better, its the only way i will eat fish.
    enjoy. :D
  11. themadchemist macrumors 68030


    Jan 31, 2003
    Chi Town
    If he comes bleeding from the gums with scurvy, you're dealing with it gregdrummeraz!
  12. prijikn macrumors newbie

    Jul 9, 2008
    Thanks sure, I will try this recipe and great ingredients.
  13. bornandbred macrumors newbie

    Jun 6, 2008
    Newcastle...but i am a Yorkshireman!
    a good book...

    there are loads of easy recipies on the web...but the best cook book i have ever come across (all the recipies are easy to follow and come out great) is the good housekeeping one.

    It is a really good book there are some simple ones but also lots of information on cooking skills and methods!

    or if you really love simple kids/student style cooking id reccommend usbourne cook book...
  14. firestarter macrumors 603


    Dec 31, 2002
    Green and pleasant land
    Yep... sausage with onion gravy stew.

    Take as many sausages as you want (4 per person works for me)
    Slice of bacon per person (canadian / British style)
    1/2 large onion per person (1 onion if just for one)
    Beef stock cube
    Bay leaf
    Garlic (paste is OK)
    Some oil

    Fry sausages for 10 minutes, until they're at least brown in a little oil. Chop bacon, onions (in rings, diced, whatever), add to pan and fry until onions are coloured/soft. Add garlic along the way (dice it, crush it, use paste, whatever).

    Boil water, put in a regular cup, add stock cube, dissolve. Add to pan. Transfer contents to a pan with a lid. Add bay leaf. I add a chopped dried chilli too at this point. Pinch of salt.

    Boil - then simmer for 1/2 hour. Take lid off, and stir. Simmer until the gravy thickens. Add some pepper to taste (pepper becomes a bit bitter if you add at the beginning and cook with it).

    That's it - serve on potato, on chips/fries you buy at a takeaway, or on rice.

    As someone coming to cooking, it's really good to get used to making onion based stews. Frying the onions for flavour, adding liquid then reducing - and letting the onions thicken the gravy themselves. If you can do this, you can make a very wide range of stews with any meat. This is also the basis for most Indian cookery (they use garlic, ginger and onion as a base, and different spices - but those base ingredients give you an authentic curry).
  15. firestarter macrumors 603


    Dec 31, 2002
    Green and pleasant land
    Bolognaise sauce:

    Equal portions chopped celery, carrot, onion. Small amount of chopped bacon.
    Fry in pan till soft, then transfer to a pan with a lid.
    Fry ground beef (beef mince), add a can of chopped tomatoes, a bay leaf (maybe some nutmeg and oregano if you have some).
    Transfer to pan with lid. Add a little water, salt. Cook down for 50 minutes.

    Serve on pasta with grated cheese.

    This is even better the second day. Or cook in the morning, then reheat in the evening.

    The celery and the carrot in this recipe add some great flavour, and bulk the sauce out.
  16. firestarter macrumors 603


    Dec 31, 2002
    Green and pleasant land
    The best cookery book for someone starting our is Nigel Slater's Appetite:


    The whole aim of this book is to help you develop a feeling for which foods taste good together, along with a few simple recipes to serve as a basis.

    He then suggests variations on the recipes.

    If you read and get into this - you're set up for a life of cookery. You don't need to look at recipes if you know how to make a few simple sauces, know some basic cooking techniques and have a feeling for which flavours work well together. It's much better to be a good 'seat of the pants' chef instead of a recipe junkie - that way you can work with anything that looks good or cheap in the supermarket, and also throw something together based on the ingredients you have an your refrigerator.
  17. carlgo macrumors 68000

    Dec 29, 2006
    Monterey CA
    Don't overcook things, especially seafood. Hot and fast.

    Buy bagged salads. You will never match all those varieties. Get several different dressings to avoid boredom as well as some olive oil and vinegar. You can add stuff to the salad. It lasts a few days once you open it.

    Nothing wrong with frozen vegetables. Corn, etc. is picked at the peak. I like the bags cuz it is easier to pour out the portion you want. Do get fresh when it is in season, a good deal, etc.

    Watch food shows now and then. You will see that there is kind of a pattern to how things are done. Less important is the recipe itself.

    Rice always takes longer to cook that what it says on the label, especially brown rice. If rice is a staple for you, take notes so you get it down and don't have to guess.

    Pasta is all-purpose, as has been written. The official way to cook it is al dente which is a little hard. I like to cook it longer and softer.

    Have the basic supplies on hand. Olive oil, sea salt, a pepper grinder, some basic spices (they are expensive and don't last forever) and stuff that lasts in the refrigerator like mayo and the basic condiments. Always have at least a red onion and some potatoes.

    Bread is good to freeze. Take the time to make a pitcher of fruit juice so you don't just reach for cokes.

    if you get stuck for making holiday dinners, get a Webber with the optional rotisserie. Fool proof, easy, perfect. People will love it.

    Get an electric thermometer, with a timer function.

    Try to work on getting fast at it. Pretend you are in a cafe with twenty people waiting. When you get fast, you will be more likely to cook something good. If it takes you all night, you won't. When you eat out, think about how the cook prepared your food.
  18. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
    Would honey work in substitute for the brown sugar?
  19. crackpip macrumors regular

    Jul 23, 2002
    Carlgo has a great posts with some important fundamentals. These are the things that I definitely recommend:

    Get good salt, like sea salt. Salt is a flavor enhancer, but it is best to salt properly when your cooking. Salting at the table always requires more for the same flavor.

    Get two thermometers. Get a digital-read, probe thermometer, and a thermometer that goes in your often. Never trust the oven dial. No matter how you cook meat, if you overcook it, it will dry out. The USDA recommended temperatures for cooking meats are high; there are better temperatures to use. Don't forget that even when you remove something from heat, it continues to cook, especially if you leave it in the pan.

    I don't usually use recipes, but here's how I cook my pork roast. Get a pork tenderloin. I usually get a large one, and cut it into smaller pieces good for two or three people. If I don't need it all, I freeze what's left (wrap it in foil, then put in a ziplock bag). I rub the meat down with olive oil, then salt, pepper, and minced (fresh) garlic. I put it in an uncovered skillet (either on a rack in the skillet or supported by onions, carrots & celery) into the oven which is at 250 F. I cook until the meat is at 145 F. Then take it out of the oven for 15 minutes, while I heat the oven up to 500F. I then put the meat in for another 15 minutes. Once I take it out. I let it rest for 10 minutes or so, then carve it up. The pork is nice and juicy, with just a slight pinkish hue.

    Here's a quick sour cream dip for tortilla chips that I make, too.
    Juice of 1 lime, 1 clove of garlic, 1/2 to 1 cup of sour cream, couple pinches of salt and 1 to 2 fresh jalapeno peppers. Mince the garlic, but remember the finer that you chop up the garlic, the stronger it gets. Dice up the peppers, removing the seeds. Mix everything together, and add a pinch or two of good salt according to taste.

    Above all, experiment. Don't be afraid to try to cook new things. If you eat something you like a restaurant, try to make it at home. I sometimes play a game, where I think of a couple things that I like, and then I'll try to come-up with something that mixes them together.

  20. blackstone macrumors regular

    Dec 12, 2005
    Washington, DC
    Carlgo and crackpip both have good advice, although if you're focusing on cooking meats, I think the probe thermometer is a lot more important than the oven thermometer. With a probe thermometer, you'll be able to identify the internal temperature of the meat, which is key.

    One extremely useful dish to learn how to make is a roast chicken; if you make the chicken on, say, Sunday, then you can eat the leftovers for the next few nights.

    It's also very useful to learn how to make quick toppings for pasta. One easy one is this:

    - 2 cloves of garlic, minced
    - A handful of shelled and cleaned shrimp
    - Butter
    - Olive oil
    - Chopped parsley
    - Sea salt
    - Pepper
    - Lemon wedge
    - Spaghetti

    Get the spaghetti cooking and heat up your frying pan.

    With, say, five minutes left to go on the pasta, drop a chunk of the butter (2 oz. or so) in the hot frying pan and swirl it around to let it foam across the entire surface. Drop in the minced garlic, swirl that around quickly, and then drop in the shrimp. Add a little more butter, along with a sprinkling of sea salt and a few grindings of pepper. Keep cooking the shrimp (but also pay attention to be sure the pasta is not getting overcooked), turning the shrimp carefully, until the shrimp is pink all around, and then remove from heat.

    Drain the pasta, toss it with a small amount of olive oil, and then pour the contents of the frying pan on top of it. Top with some sprinkles of parsley, add a lemon wedge on the side, and serve. It'll look prettier and be far more tasty than any topping you can get in a jar!
  21. Melrose Suspended


    Dec 12, 2007
  22. tresbien macrumors regular


    May 21, 2008
    stirfrys are easy! Just cut up a bunch of veggies in bite sized peices, put in a frying pan with a bit of oil, and stir fry. You can get stir fry sauce at the store, but soy sauce mixed with a bit of brown sugar is good to. You can also add cut up steak or chicken, but I don't because I'm a vegetarian. Serve over rice (which is just one part rice, two parts water, bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat to love, let cook until all water is absorbed), and you've got yourself a complete, delicious and easy meal.
  23. furcalchick macrumors 68020


    Dec 19, 2006
    South Florida
    you know i actually have a dish that upgrades ramen to something more luxurious...it's still somewhat a work in progress though.

Share This Page