Monday, April 19, 2010

Kitchen Time Savers - Share Your Tips and Tricks

Whew! Whew!! This is the first time since I started blogging, I haven't put up a post since a whole WEEK!!! Reason- I have been quite busy with my office work and its summer break for school .  Having two hyper active kids at home, demanding my attention(EQUAL puhleez!!), demanding snacks and treats every now and then,  is not exactly the perfect setting for me to blog away!! Here I was thinking, I will blog and bake to my heart's content during summer, without a worry about homework, practice and stuff:-((

Being the foodie I am, I loathe to compromise on food for any reason in the world!! And the food had better be good and healthy! But hey,  now I do not have the luxury of time, but would love my kids to have some decent grub when they wish. I would love to spend some time with them, rather than in the kitchen... yet dish out some good food everyday, spend my time on productive office work when they are away at the 3-hour summer camp( What a respite:-)). Now, isn't that a tall order and also every mother's wish??

 You could tell me how I cut down the cooking time, what I can make ahead to a certain stage and then finish when I need, what I can freeze well, things that can be whipped up real fast - like 10 minutes without much prior preparation, everyday grind and store versatile masalas and pastes, ingredients I will need to stock up on to come up with a quick snack -  In short just about anything to make cooking easier and faster. I am fine with one time effort, but not repetitive. Do tell me your recipes in short too( without worrying about the measurement of ingredients that go in).

I will give a couple of my own(and quite common ones) here so that I make more sense in this crazy, hurried post.

1.Grind green chillies with salt and turmeric and store in the fridge to avoid cutting them everyday.
2. Dry roast all ingredients of Upma, just add water and cook when needed.
3. Grind roasted onion-tomato-ginger- garlic and freeze in small quanities for our own low-fat ready curry paste.
4. Grind roasted poppy seeds, roasted dry coconut, almonds, dates, mix with jaggery. Store. Bring milk to a boil and add the paste to make a quick Poppy Seed payasam.

You get the drift...

Every home maker has a few of these signature tricks up her sleeve. So guys, please share your time saving tricks and tips and lend a helping hand to a foodie in need:-)) Hope I sound desperate enough!!! Hope my next post comes in here soon and with a recipe..


Prema said...

Lovely and usefull tips suma.thanks for posting.

Padhu Sankar said...

nice tips!!

Suma Rowjee said...

Hey guys!! Need your tips here please!!:-))

shubhada said...

hey love your idea on tips and tricks...we are always in need of some kitchen time savers.

Namitha said...

Cool ideas Suma..I used to grate and store the coconut in the freezer,in small packets, while I was in India :-)

Priya Suresh said...

Very useful tips...

Nachiketa said...


know exactly what you're talking about when you say "I loathe to compromise on food for any reason in the world!! And the food had better be good and healthy!"

nice tips...

The Variable, Crazy Over Desserts - Nachiketa
Catch me on facebook @ Crazy Over Desserts

Champa said...

These are nice tips. I roast and keep rave. I do the mix for gasagase payasa, but don't do the others. To answer your question on granola, yes. You can skip dried cranberries and use raisins instead. You could cut up dry dates and use instead too. Use whatever is available. You don't have to use walnuts. You could use almonds or even cashews. Unfortunately, all of the hubby's side are here. So, no moving back.

Cool Lassi(e) said...

Lovely tips and tricks! Your Mocha Chocolate Gateaux Cake in the previous post looks splendid!

Deepti Pawar said...

Nice tips Suma!

Here are some things I do (as and when I am upto it) to save time in the kitchen:

- Chop up 3-4 tomatoes and onions and store them in large boxes for later use

- Plan meals every Saturday for the next week and buy only those things when we shop groceries on Saturday evenings. Planning goes a long way..but is a hard thing to cultivate as a habit. Yet, it is a time tested thing and surely works!!

Will share more!

Anonymous said...

Lovely tips Suma! Here are some from me too! -
1) Like Deepti, I too plan every week's menu on Sunday and try as much as I can, to stick to it. I make a chart and stick it on the refrigerator so I dont end up wracking my brains every night about the menu for the next day.
2) I keep mixed roti (chappathi) atta in the fridge, wrapped in cling film, so it saves me a lot of time on weekdays. I mix just enough to last 2 days, so that we dont end up eating stale food!
3) I grate enough coconut to last for the whole week on Sundays and dump it in the freezer. So when I need to make sambhar or chutneys, all I need to do is, take it out, microwave it for a few seconds, and Im good to go!
4) I regularly make the dry mix for oats idli & rava idli and keep it handy in my freezer, to whip up breakfast real quick on a crazy morning.
5) Whenever I can, I chop up my veggies the previous night and put them in compartmentalized boxes, to get jet-started on the cooking the next morning. Saves me a lot of time, and tension too!

Well, these were my two-cents worth for now. Will drop by and add more later, when my arms permit me to type again! Till then, keep going! :)