[tabs slidertype=”images” auto=”yes” autospeed=”6000″]
[imagetab width=”640″ height=”426″] http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7283/8733565395_78c9ac3e24_z.jpg [/imagetab]
[imagetab width=”640″ height=”426″] http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7294/8733558289_5964d12f5d_z.jpg [/imagetab]
[imagetab width=”640″ height=”426″] http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7320/8734677928_c6a5a0b680_z.jpg [/imagetab]
[dropcap style=”font-size: 60px; color: #9b9b9b;”] W[/dropcap]henever I talk to people about their frustrations with cooking, meal planning is always one of the most common responses.
How about you? Is meal planning something you’re happy with?
If your answer is ‘YES’ then skip down to the recipe below and I’ll see you next week.
If on the other hand your answer is a ‘NO’, meal planning isn’t a source of joy in your life. Then hang around.
Because I suspect you may be making this simple mistake…
What is the most common meal planning mistake?
Basically, it’s deciding what you’re going to cook in advance and then building your shopping list around that plan.
Having a set recipe list causes problems for many reasons. First, it takes a lot of time to plan in advance. And having a set list means you aren’t free to choose what looks best (or cheapest) when you’re out shopping. But the biggest problem is the lack of flexibility to cope with the changes that naturally come up with modern life.
It’s nearly impossible to predict that Wednesday is going to be the coldest February day on record and you’ll be craving a comforting bowl of soup, rather than the cool & light salad you had in the meal plan.
No wonder meal plans tend to get broken.
How do YOU avoid this mistake?
You just need to learn how to ‘reverse’ the process.
It may sound a little scary, but in practice it’s a really liberating way of approaching meal planning. And it’s actually much quicker and easier than traditional meal planning.
Looking for a revolutionary approach to ‘reverse’ meal planning and cook healthy food fast?
Tuna Pesto Pasta
This recipe was something I discovered when I was home alone a few weeks ago. I felt like something super comforting yet light at the same time. Not always an easy brief to fill. I’ve made pesto based pastas and tuna based separately for years but the whole idea to combine the two was a new one for me. And I’m glad I got there. Better late than never.
The pesto brings lovely freshness and zesty flavour and the tuna provides subtle protein, which makes this dish great for anyone who is a bit hesitant about eating fish.
I’ve been experimenting with gluten-free pastas lately and have been pleasantly surprised with the results. I’ve found pasta made with quinoa flour gives excellent results. Of course feel free to use your own favourite pasta or see below for other options.
Enough for 2
150g (5oz) short pasta (I used gluten-free pasta)
5-6 tablespoons pesto
2 x 185g cans (2 x 6oz) tuna in oil, drained
2-3 handfuls baby spinach
1. Cook pasta in salted boiling water until al dente (see the packet for times).
2. Drain pasta and return to the pot. Stir in the pesto, tuna and baby spinach. Season and serve hot.
budget – increase the pasta to 250g (9oz) and reduce the tuna to one can.
fresh – serve with a squeeze of lemon.
vegan – replace the tuna with 2 handfuls cashews or other nuts and use a dairy-free pesto (just make regular pesto and skip the cheese).
vegetarian – replace tuna with fresh cheese such as ricotta or goats cheese.
grain-free / slow carb – replace pasta with cooked or canned butter beans or chickpeas or cooked quinoa – you’ll need about 300g (11oz) cooked legumes. Heat your beans / chickpeas in a little oil then stir in remaining ingredients.
paleo – pan fry sliced zucchini (about 3 medium) in a little oil until soft. Skip the pasta and stir the remaining ingredients into the hot zucchini.
Video version of the recipe.
ps. Not sure if the ‘2-Minute Meal Plan‘ will help you?
Here’s what people are saying about the ebook system…
“I just purchased the ebook and I am only on page 57 of the first part, but can already tell I LOVE IT. I’m so excited to start implementing the things I’m learning, and to gobble up the rest of the books. Thank you a million for this ebook, it is absolutely brilliant. I really can’t remember the last time I was this excited about a purchase. I will also be getting a much happier husband thanks to this book.”
Amy, 2-Minute Meal Planner
“The whole system was very useful to me. I learned better planning of meals for a week and, besides that, to improvise with ingredients. Preparing food ceased to be stressful factor and became a joy!”
Kate, 2-Minute Meal Planner.
Hello. The ‘Stone Soup’ Metaphor is an old favourite of mine so great to see it being used & especially for food :-)
I also loved how you talk about discovering rather than inventing recipes.
In our house meals don’t ‘reveal themselves’ until all the bits are on the table most nights, lol… I don’t know how it works & often reflect on how I could not plan the Deliciousness that occurs.
Look forward to future updates.
LOVE the idea of meals ‘revealing themselves’
I like your flexible approach to meal planning – I think it is why I often don’t stick to a recipe because I look at what is in my kitchen rather than feel bound by what is in the recipe. I love how you have the variations with the recipes – my vegan variation would probably be the beans or chickpeas instead of the cashews or nuts – I actually thought this was the grain free variation til I read it properly.
Tuna Pesto is really my favorite. Thank for your 2 minute meal plan. XOXO
Thanks for supporting Stonesoup Jarome!
Yes Jules that is exactly what makes meal planning hard! I want to stick to it to make things easy, keep the food budget to a minimum and because I cook for at least one child who likes more routine. But it’s hard to account for arriving home later than expected, those times I haven’t got the energy to follow my plan and as you say – weather can dictate. You’ve definitely raised my interest in the book.
Glad I’ve got you thinking M!
I just bought the 2-Minute book and I’m so excited! I’ve been following your blog for a year or two, and I love the flexibility of your recipes (I’m a gluten-intolerant sometimes-vegan), so I’m looking forward to taking it to the next level. Thanks.
Thanks for supporting Stonesoup Dana!
Really appreciate it!
Thank you so much for 25 Healthy One Pot Meals. This has really given me lots of new ideas for variety in my kitchen.