Two pot dinner ready to eat in 45 minutes!

I watched an episode of Jamie Oliver’s 30 Minute Meals just recently and I was not impressed. The food looked sensational and I’m sure it tasted wonderful too but 30 minutes? Right. For a master chef with everything prepared and ready to go, yes 30 minutes is doable but for you and me? I think not. Β And dare I say it? I’d hate to have to face all the cleaning up as well.

So for this first, quick meal recipe I’m going to give you a two pot meal with minimum preparation, fuss or mess. I know because I just cooked it for dinner.

Now, being a writer and an imaginative kind of person I pictured myself rushing home from work. Are you with me so far? Good. I think we both know that preparing dinner is not what I’m thinking about. I’m tired, my feet hurt, I want a cup of something, or perhaps a glass of something but I know that duty calls. I open the front door, dump my stuff and on the way to the bedroom I spend 2 seconds turning the oven onto about 180 celsius fan-forced [365 F]. Then I get changed, have a drink, talk to the dog and wind down for a bit.

Once I’m ready to cook the oven should be ready as well. I put about 2 tablespoons of peanut or olive oil in a roasting pan and then I add 6 – 8 free-range chicken thick fillets to the pan. Skin on or off doesn’t matter but I really wouldn’t use breast meat as it dries out very quickly. Next I sprinkle the chicken with some ordinary table salt and a little white pepper. To complete my preparations I slice one small onion and a nice red capsicum [bell pepper] and toss them on top of the chicken. The pan goes into the oven and I’m 1/3 of the way done.

Potatoes are next. I like those little potatoes [called chats here] but you can use whatever you’ve got just cut them into quarters or smaller so they cook quickly. The potatoes go into a pot with just enough water to cover. In goes a bit of salt and on goes the lid.

While the potatoes are cooking I wash some lettuce or water cress [I love the flavour of water cress plus it’s full of vitamins and anti-oxidants] and tomatoes [or whatever you have in the fridge and like to eat raw]. While the vegetables drain I make the salad dressing. I pour about 3 tablespoons of olive oil in the salad bowl – it helps if the bowl is still empty πŸ˜‰ –Β  add about the same quantity of vinegar or lemon juice, a pinch of salt and stir. Voila salad dressing is done. Everything except the lettuce can go in the salad dressing right now. Leave the lettuce until you’re ready to serve.

By now the potatoes should be just cooked. Drain. If you used large potatoes cut into smaller pieces the skin may have come off. Discard the bits of loose skin and throw the potatoes in with the chicken. These potatoes won’t go crunchy. Instead they will soak up the pan juices and be delicious!

At this point I [and you] can relax for a bit with that glass of something I promised. In between watching the news on tv and having that drink I’m going to toss the potatoes in the baking dish to make sure they are well covered in the pan juices.

45 minutes after starting to cook dinner is done. AND… I have just one pot and one pan to clean. Not bad if I do say so myself.

Once a week we get takeaway home delivered. It’s my break from cooking and it keeps me sane but the takeaway costs more than the meal I’ve just cooked, isn’t as fresh and healthy andΒ takes about the same length of time to arrive, sometimes longer if they’re busy. I rest my case.

-hugs-

Meeks

p.s. I’m trying out the scheduling feature!

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About acflory

I am the kind of person who always has to know why things are the way they are so my interests range from genetics and biology to politics and what makes people tick. For fun I play online mmorpgs, read, listen to a music, dance when I get the chance and landscape my rather large block. Work is writing. When a story I am working on is going well I'm on cloud nine. On bad days I go out and dig big holes... View all posts by acflory

26 responses to “Two pot dinner ready to eat in 45 minutes!

  • metan

    Yum! That sounds delicious, and easy! I love watching Jamies 30 min meals, as does son number 1, but you are right, the only thing 30 min about them is the actual cooking time, not the preparation, or the washing up those myriad of dishes. All an unwelcome part of dinner time in the real world.

    I would love a few minions rushing about the the kitchen sorting out my ingredients and doing the washing up for me, especially after a hard day at work!

    Like

    • pinkagendist

      I think it’s a total cheat… 30 minutes only if edited down from an hour and a half of intense work with 2 assistants.

      I don’t really like him, his enunciation annoys me. It’s almost a speech impediment. Lazy jaw?

      I discovered Andy Bates recently, he’s amazing.

      Like

      • acflory

        I just checked him out and found a recipe for jam donuts! I am so going to give this a try. πŸ˜€

        Like

      • metan

        I think I like him because he was the antidote to the abusive Gordon Ramsay. His unrealistic 30 mins is an annoying cheat though.
        I would love to see him do the show but suddenly finding out that he is just short of that vital ingredient, and with kids wandering in and out asking for something to eat or help with their homework or advice on weapons design. The very same show would be titled ‘Jamies 2 Hour Recipe for Insanity’ then!

        His speech annoys me a bit too but I love the clear enjoyment he gets out of cooking, the eps when he cooked with his mum or neighbour or kids are very funny too. I think I’m just sick of the other pretentious cooking shows.
        Will have to look up Andy Bates, thanks!

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        • pinkagendist

          Ramsey’s ‘abuse’ gimmick got boring very quickly. I think as I get older I get more and more impatient…
          I can’t stand the oooohs and aaaahs of most tv chefs- and their annoying use of language.
          The other day I saw one of them saying: “then you just close the oven door, like so”- Really? Like so? Does that imply there’s someone watching who doesn’t know how to close an oven door?
          I like old school straight forward, like Delia. Here are the ingredients, here’s how you do it, goodbye πŸ˜€

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        • acflory

          lmao – you’re just turning into a grump Pinky :p

          Like

        • acflory

          Jamie Oliver is passionate about food and it shows without too much ego getting in the way.

          Btw I’m hoping to try Andy Bates’ recipe for jam donuts this weekend πŸ˜€ I’ve been looking for a simple [more or less] recipe for ages.

          Like

        • Colin

          I like Oliver for one thing. He got rid of the disgusting school lunches in this country. He’s had a bit of a movement about that. Before it was chips in loads of batter and old fish. Now you get veggies and everything. But then again, all TV chefs are annoying. Like Nigella. Growl.

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        • acflory

          We used to have Maggie Beers co-hosting a cooking show here in Australia. It was called the Cook and the Chef. She was the ‘cook’ and Roger something was the chef and everyone LOVED Maggie. She was just as good a cook but she was just…a nice lady. Nice in the old fashioned sense before it became almost a four letter word. πŸ™‚

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        • metan

          Maggie Beer and Simon Bryant! I always watched that show! I loved the way they managed to tell each other how wrong their dishes were, and how differently they each would have done it, but in the nicest possible way! πŸ˜€

          Like

        • acflory

          -giggles- YES! I came to like Simon after about 20 episodes or so but I loved Maggie from the word go. She is a real lady in the old fashioned, good sense of the word.

          Like

    • acflory

      Amen! I’d also love to be able to crack two eggs at once without worrying about getting shells in with the eggs! Or being able chop at super light speed without adding my fingers to the pot. :/

      Like

  • Carrie Rubin

    Sounds wonderful. It’s so nice knowing what goes into the food we eat. πŸ™‚

    Like

    • acflory

      I agree. It tastes better, is better for you and 9 times out of 10 it’s cheaper as well. I think people have just forgotten how to cook. Or maybe they think that every meal has to be a 5 star creation.

      By the way Carrie – would you consider sharing some quick and easy recipes here? Nothing fancy just good wholesome food. You could guest blog your recipe[s] or just send them to me and I’ll post in your name.

      I would really love to be able to build up a reserve of these recipes for people to try.

      Like

      • Carrie Rubin

        I’ll give it some thought and if I come up with something, I’ll send it your way (rather than guest blog–I have trouble keeping up with my own as it is πŸ™‚ ). I just encountered a recipe for black bean burgers I want to try. If that turns out well, that might be a good one to share.

        Like

  • Candy

    Before Jamie Oliver was born and before Rachel Ray (the 30 minute chef over here in the states who happens to live on my street) we used to call my mom the 10 minute gourmet. As a working mom she spent 10 or 20 minutes at most in prep β€” oven or stove did the rest and we’d have a real dinner. It’s possible if you don’t include the cooking time. She was also dedicated to using as few pots as possible for quick clean-ups.

    Now that my folks are both 85, my dad has taken over a lot of the cooking duties. He loves it. Of course he’s retired and he’s no where near as good as mom. She tolerates his cooking β€” and his over use of pots β€” as long as he also cleans, until she tires of his food and takes over. Thats when I like to dine with them! LOL… Mom rocks in the kitchen!

    Your menu sounds great, but the commute from NYC to Melbourne is a bit long for making it in time for dinner.

    Like

  • Ilil Arbel

    I’ll start paying close attention when you post VEGETARIAN recipes…

    Like

  • Ilil Arbel

    Currently only vegetarian, though with very little animal products, probably on my way to no animal products at all. I did see the Dahl and Rice the other day and it’s on my e-mail thing, I kept it. Looked really delicious. I did not see the Spinach Sauce and French Toast. I’ll check.

    Like

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