I gave myself a bit of a challenge this week. Stupid of me I know but I'd had a couple of conversations with different people about modern day cooking habits. People talk about busy lives and being short of time, as excuses for not cooking wholesome meals from fresh food and I contend that it actually doesn't take that long. So I produced pork steak with two veg and gravy roast potatoes and timed the process.
Pork steak with vegetables
I was describing what I was doing to a friend and she commented 'Oh I see - Sunday lunch', and my answer was in the positive. I estimated that it would take me about 45 minutes starting from cold. The important thing for me was that the meat and vegetables were fresh. You will spot some pigs in blankets which I bought ready prepared on fiscal grounds.
So the process!
Turn on the oven.
Boil the kettle.
Prepare the potatoes, green beans and courgettes.
Place the pork steak in the frying pan to seal the outside and surround with chopped onion.
Place the potatoes and green beans in the boiling water for twenty minutes.
While they are cooking transfer the steak to a roasting tin, add the onions and pour over some stock, then pop it in the oven.
After 15 minutes drain the boiling vegetables, add the potatoes and the pigs to the roasting turn and return to the oven and the green beans to the frying pan with the sliced courgettes.
Season the greens in the frying pan and sautee for around three to five minutes. Place on a plate and put in the oven to keep warm while the meat is finishing. After 20 minutes plate up.
What you see in the photo above in 45 minutes with most of the washing up done. Now I know that a microwave, or ping ping, meal takes considerably less time but the benefits are significant. No added sugar!
No added colourings or preservatives.
Vitamins and minerals.
Flavour without enhancement.
The added advantage were that the greens were out of the garden at no cost. The potatoes cost 25p, the pork steak 80p, the pigs 35p and so even with oil and seasoning less than £2.00 per plate.
Although I was only cooking for one the quantities needed for a family of four would not seriously increase the cooking and preparation time. My message is that cooking from fresh doesn't have to be a time consuming onerous task and it is so much more healthy.