If just thinking about “What’s for dinner?” causes your blood pressure to rise, you’ve come to the right place. I’m Jane, your Kitchen GPS, and I’ll help you navigate meal planning and recipes that will increase your “Impress” Quotient while dialing back your Stress-O-Meter.
To keep stress at a minimum, I stick with ingredients that are already in the pantry or refrigerator or easy to find at the grocery store. My recipes are always flexible and forgiving. While fresh is best – it’s not always feasible. Most of my recipes will work equally well with frozen, canned, or dried ingredients. Unless noted otherwise, you can substitute many ingredients for what you have on hand. Based on cooking temperature, flavor, and texture needs, the recipe indicates the best option for fat content (butter, vegetable oil, canola oil, olive oil, coconut oil, shortening). However, the difference in quality is usually negligible. Use what you have in your pantry. No need to stress it! Herbs and spices are also easy to switch up, and there’s no need to invest in an extensive collection that doesn’t get used and takes up space. I suggest having the basics and a couple of pre-mixed seasonings (all-purpose seasoning, Italian seasoning, pumpkin pie or apple pie spice).
To keep the Stress-O-Meter in the relaxed or coping zone, I’m all about tried and true shortcuts – lots of shortcuts! There’s no special place in heaven for stressing yourself out over mundane tasks that have little bearing on the end result. Yes, there can be a difference in taste or quality depending on what shortcuts you choose – just like there is a difference between an expensive bottle vs. a cheap bottle of wine. But no one is asking you to go cheap! I’m suggesting that you go middle of the road. There’s plenty of shortcuts that will make life easier without compromising taste.
This site isn’t only about limiting stress in the kitchen. It’s also about winning those “oohs and aahs” that we all love to hear. As over-achievers, we expect our kitchen creations to be nothing less than impressive like everything else we do. Right? Right! I’ve perfected my recipes over the years by implementing the same “secret” I use for earning compliments on my appearance and my home decorating. I choose a focal point in which I invest in quality and dedicate my effort. Just like we build our wardrobe or our living room around a couple of killer pieces, the same is true in making a recipe or creating a meal. Trust me, this really works! Just try serving scrambled eggs topped with a dollop of leftover hollandaise sauce, a slice of avocado, and sprinkled with parsley. Your family will think they are eating at a fancy brunchery! Impress NOT Stress!