A Favor to Ask
  Re: (...)
This broken hand is all new to me - I have never been handicapped in all these 70-something years. I know I'm being a big baby about all this, but I do need some help.

I need some ideas for just basic dinners. I don't need recipes, I can do that - just need some proding.

To explain what I find I'm still doing is - i.e. I told Roy I'd make marinara sauce and make spaghetti for a dinner. Then my mind went into overdrive - I thought, o.k. sausage or beef meatballs, adding some interesting ingred. to the sauce - green olives? capers? bacon or salt pork? on and on. I just don't seem to be able to just think spaghetti sauce with pasta! (anyone understand what I'm tying to say?)

I guess bottom line is I overthink things to make dishes as interesting as I can. But my hand just kills me after 4hours of prep rather than one or 1 1/2.

I've come up with -
spaghetti -BASIC
Twice baked potatoes
Adding simple things to basic soup

I'm open- the above is not going to be very interesting for the next 5 weeks.
Retired and having fun writing cookbooks, tasting wine and sharing recipes with all my friends.
  Re: A Favor to Ask by cjs (This broken hand is ...)
Okay, I'll make up a list of things, and I'll post it tomorrow. Poor dear, I HATE that this has happened to you!
Keep your mind wide open.
  Re: Re: A Favor to Ask by Gourmet_Mom (Okay, I'll make up a...)
(Me, too!)
Thank you
Retired and having fun writing cookbooks, tasting wine and sharing recipes with all my friends.
  Re: Re: A Favor to Ask by cjs ((Me, too!) [img]/ub...)
Hey! I just had a thought! If you want to go back to the basics, why not take a page from your own book.....Chef's Journey Home! I was starting my list, and had added mac and cheese, and remembered that your recipe in the book is pretty basic....light bulb went on!!!!

Also, so far I've got deli style sandwiches, quiches and frittatas, and chowders.
Keep your mind wide open.
  Re: Re: A Favor to Ask by cjs ((Me, too!) [img]/ub...)
When I broke my ankle and was stuck upstairs for weeks Tony had to do the majority of the cooking. I had to keep it simple for him or he would just say he wasn't going to do it. We did a lot of:

Baked/roasted chicken, either parts or whole chickens (made enchiladas out of the leftovers). Canned corn. Rice a Roni.
Burgers. Patty Melts. French dips. Reubens. Grilled Cheese & Ham. Hot dogs.
Chile Colorado Burritos.
Oatmeal. French toast. Bacon and eggs.
Chicken Teriyaki thighs w/frozen jasmine rice.
Old school tacos.
Spaghetti with meat sauce.
Grilled sausage sandwiches with peppers & onions.

It was no time to be fancy or creative for us. It was a time to just get through it without me stalling my healing time by doing too much or by him throwing his hands up.

Good luck. We had to learn to put less of an importance on dinner. He also had to get Michael to and from school and we did homework from my bed. It was a trying time.
  Re: Re: A Favor to Ask by Trixxee (When I broke my ankl...)
Oh, let me add a good old grilled steak, baked potato, tossed salad using a bag of prewashed lettuce and maybe some green onions, sliced cukes and tomatoes.
  Re: Re: A Favor to Ask by Trixxee (Oh, let me add a goo...)
If you have a TJ's nearby, you might consider splurging on their precut items, such as onions, onion pepper combos, ready to use veggies, etc. It could save you a lot of pain. I use them when the arthritis in my wrists becomes painful. When hand was in a cast, apart from putting on a glove over it in case I forgot and started to use it, I found different utensils work better for my dominant hand. I used my food processor and mini processor more as well, and the the blender or mixer to whisk larger quantities.
You also might want to use recipes that use spices rather than herbs to lessen cutting and roasts instead of smaller pieces. Hopefully hubby can help carve when it is time to serve.
Hope you heal really fast.
  Re: A Favor to Ask by cjs (This broken hand is ...)
Jean dealing with my back has given me some experience - and combining that with working until 8pm most nights:

Tamale pie - Basic ground beef filling with tomatoes, tomato sauce, onions, garlic, cumin (etc), canned sliced olives, cheese & Jiffy cornbread topping.

I'll look for the recipe - a really great baked empanada made with crescent rolls or frozen puff pastry . . . really simple.

Country ribs & kraut - maybe some cornbread or mashed potatoes?

I have more . . . just have to think.
You only live once . . . but if you do it right once should be enough!
  Re: Re: A Favor to Ask by Harborwitch (Jean dealing with my...)
Jean, I think Daphne had a great suggestion when she mentioned your own book. The thing that you need to do for the next five weeks is just get back to basics, the stuff you made when you worked all day and had to make dinner for your family when you got home. Try to think like that.

Do you like sloppy joes? Ground meat, a can of Manwich, and you get several sandwiches out of it. Or my mom's recipe for ground meat and noodle casserole. Easy peasy. Add a bagged salad and you are good to go.

If salads don't appeal to you in the cold months, try the frozen food department for vegetable sides that can just be microwaved in a few minutes.

Have you ever made a recipe called 5 hour stew? Super easy.


2 lbs stew meat
3-4 medium potatoes, cut into chunks
2 or 3 handfuls baby carrots
2-3 stalks celery, sliced
1 onion, cut into chunks
1 small can diced tomatoes
2-3 beef boullion cubes
1 slice white bread, torn into pieces
3 Tbs tapioca
2 Tbs brown sugar
Salt, pepper, garlic powder, spices to taste
1 cup frozen peas

1. Put all ingredients, except peas, in a greased, covered oven proof casserole or pan.

2. Stir to mix the ingredients.

3. Place lid on pan and put in 250 degree oven for 5 hours.

4. After stew has been cooking for 4 hours, add frozen peas and continue baking for another hour.

5. Increase or decrease vegetables according to your tastes.

6. Serve with hot, fresh bread.

Servings: 6

Source: cooking.com

Then put your feet up and treat yourself to a really good wine.

P.S. I hate that this happened to you too.

"Drink your tea slowly and reverently..."
  Re: Re: A Favor to Ask by Mare749 (Jean, I think Daphne...)
Maryann, stews is a great idea! Throw a bunch of flavors in a crock pot or Dutch oven and serve over rice....get over making bread for a while? One pot meals is a good idea.

I also thought of the Fajita Burgers you told us about recently and different burger flavor ideas evolved. Why not different burger ideas?

Not to mention take out a time or two a week. No shame in that! Think of all the dibs and dabs you'll have to play with later!

And William mentioned that he wished he could fly me out there to help you. I told him that would be amazing....I'd learn so much!

That said, is there anyone close by who you would like to mentor and would like to come in and learn from you? I know if I lived close by and had the opportunity to be your sou chef for 5 weeks, I'd pay to have the opportunity!

Think about it!
Keep your mind wide open.

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