Is summer over yet? I know there is a full month still until Fall is officially here, but today is the first day of school in our area and I know many of your children have been back for weeks now. This time of year is a giddy one for me. My sadness at saying good bye to the long, slow days of summer is completely drowned out by the excitement of a new school year. It means cooler temperatures and warmer drinks, sweaters and baking, and caramel apples and pumpkins, and crunchy leaves underfoot, and roasts and stews and heavy dishes and Christmas cookies, and so much more. By the end of August, I am ready for Summer to quietly slip away and for Fall to start happening with noisy exuberance.
Fall means starting fresh and getting organized. After school snacks and dinners at the table and time for practices and homework-it’s all coming and it’ll be here before you know it. So how do you get ready for Fall? I use these tools to plan my menus (and who knows I might actually get organized enough to post a menu soon). As hurricane season draws to a close I feel comfortable stocking my freezer and cook larger batches of meals and snacks to freeze. I have plans to do several posts on freezing meals this fall so let me know if you are interested.
The real key to staying organized for me is simplicity. Simplicity with my meals doesn’t mean one-note or bland or boring, it just means to keep it simple: protein, starch, vegetables. One of the simplest meals you can make is a quickly seared protein, accompanied by a starch and a few easy vegetables.
Take this Lemony Sauced Chicken over Truffled Mushroom Risotto with Lemon Butter Broccoli. The basic components are simple: sear a chicken breast, make some rice, steam some broccoli. It is the extra flourish of lemon zest over the broccoli florets, the fast yet velvety pan sauce, the creaminess of the risotto style rice with a drizzle of truffle oil, and the fresh chopped herbs sprinkled over that make the meal great. The best part is that these extra accents take very little extra time yet make the meal feel far more luxurious. Click here for the recipe »