Cooking for one

skyway1111February 20, 2003

I LOVE to cook.

It is sometimes harder to cook for one. Anyone have any great singe serving recipes?

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Hi skyway. I'd like to see some, too. After 40 years of cooking (or not cooking) for one, I still just quarter most recipes and then (over)eat the result. Things that can't be made smaller, pie for instance, I forego at home and have only as a rare treat when I eat out.

    Bookmark   February 20, 2003 at 2:13PM
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I actually think it's *really* hard to cook just one serving most of the time, mainly because you always have leftover raw materials (3/4 lb of meat, 1/2 can of this or that, etc...). Normally I just cook a regular meal that would serve 2 or 3 people, and then divide it into equal portions. Eat one, refrigerate or freeze the others for lunches and future dinners. I made a nice meat pie last Sunday night - just finished it off yesterday for lunch. That works pretty well, since I don't have to cook more than 3-4 times per week (I love to cook, but I hate to clean my kitchen). LOL

But some things aren't so bad to make just for one person - it's pretty easy to grill or boil up a chicken breast or steak, make 1-1 1/2 cups rice or pasta (or bake one potatoe), and 1/2-1 cup veggies and call it a good meal. 1 small can of sliced mushrooms, sauteed with 2 cloves of garlic (diced), some worchestershire sauce, powdered mustard, and a tiny bit of lemon juice makes a great side to toss with pasta. If you add 1/2-1 cup cream or milk to that mushroom mixture, you can have a nice thick pasta sauce, and it's only 1-2 servings in those small amounts.

Tomato-basil soup can be made just for one - heat about 1-1/2 cups chicken or veggie broth, add a small can of tomato sauce, some diced chicken if you'd like, 1-2 diced tomatoes (or 1/2 can diced tomatoes), and a little frozen corn. Lots of basil, garlic and pepper, and a little lemon juice. To make it creamy, add a bit of milk to the mix, and simmer until it's as thick or thin as you want it. Yummy with a cheese sandwich. :-)

Ham steaks are good - I buy a ham every other month or so, cut them into personal-sized steaks and freeze them separately. Then I can pull out a ham steak, and throw it in a skillet with a little water, lemon juice, honey, garlic, pepper, soy sauce, ground mustard (lots - yum!) a couple tablespoons frozen orange juice concentrate, and parsley. While that's simmering away, I'll make one serving of either instant mashed potatoes or pasta (egg noodles), and heat up some veggies (whatever I feel like that night). When the hamsteak is done, I pull it out, and add just a little brown sugar & cornstarch to the sauce, and simmer it while I'm dishing up everything else. If I'm eating pasta, I sprinkle it with shredded cheese, then I pour my orange sauce over my "carb" and my hamsteak. Very good!

A good light "glaze" for chicken is water, lemon juice, honey, garlic and parsley...

Sausage & potato soup...dice one or two polish sausages, and 1-2 whole potatoes. Combine with some diced onion in a saucepan, saute in olive oil until onions are tender. Add water (about a cup or so), and chicken or veggie bollion to taste. Simmer until potatoes are very tender. Remove about half the potatoes, mash and return to soup to thicken (or add instant mashed potato flakes). I season it with pepper and garlic, and add 1/2-1 cup milk or cream, and if I have it, some spinach. Heat until warm again, eat with crusty bread or dinner rolls.

I'll stop yammering now...I'm getting hungry! :-)

    Bookmark   February 20, 2003 at 5:42PM
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After decades of cooking for a crowd, then 3-4, then just 2, I still tend to cook for a crowd. When I can be bothered cooking at all, that is!

    Bookmark   February 21, 2003 at 1:08AM
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I still cook like I'm feeding the multitude. I send the overflow over to the ex, who is finally expressing gratitude for my cooking!


    Bookmark   February 21, 2003 at 10:38PM
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If you don't have a George Foreman Grill - get one! I have the smallest one for my "single" meals and a larger one if I'm cooking for more than myself.

I can come home from work, plug in the GFG, throw some fresh veggies in the microwave, and be sitting down and eating salmon, steak, burgers, chicken breast, etc. within 10 minutes! A salmon steak takes only 2 mins and comes out perfect - steak about 4 mins.

I was skeptical when I first saw the grill on an Infomercial (I'm skeptical of ANYTHING on an infomertial) but my friends started raving about it and I have to admit it's the greatest! The only time I've been disappointed was when I tried to crowd the food on the grill - hence I bought a larger model too.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2003 at 6:20AM
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I still cook a normal 2-4 person meal but then divide it up and store it in baggies in the freezer. I can take out what I need to carry for lunch to work, or for a quick microwave heatup for dinner. Everything except salad can be chopped, cooked, cutup, etc. and then put in a baggie for a one-serving size. I found the baggies easier to store in the freezer than a plastic container. Cook 4 chicken breasts, put 2 in bags, chop one and bag it and eat the last one. Same with other meats, veggies, etc. This saves on cooking time and mess in the kitchen. Clean up is a breeze.

    Bookmark   March 1, 2003 at 6:59AM
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Hey I have a hand-me-down GF mini grill. It's about the size of a hair dryer? VERY tiny! It's great for grilling fish and stuff.

Just single servings since my kid won't eat fish.

- darkeyedgirl

    Bookmark   March 1, 2003 at 4:34PM
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I work as a CNA nights.4 nights 1 off, then 3 nights 2 off. then 4 nights 3off. Usualy the 3 off is a weekend. I cook enough on my 3 day off to last me 'til my next 3 off.Make portions and freeze them.Saves time.Then all I have to add is a salad or bread to the meal.This gives me time on my 1 and 2 days off to visit my 2 Grand Children and the Daughter and Her Husband. Yes I'm single.I was happyly married for 40 years.Husband passed away last July .I have not yet learned to cook for one person.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2003 at 4:51PM
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Some things are not hard to cook for just one, I use my heavy cast iron skillet, brush olive oil on the bottom and have some sort of meat: chicken breast or a pork loin chop are best, add a cut-up potato and a couple of root vegetables, stick it all in a 375 oven, in an hour there's dinner and no big cleanup.
But it is impossible to make spaghetti sauce or stew or a meatloaf for one, so there comes the baggie/freezer method.
If I cook too many veggies of any sort, they all get put into a baggie until there are enough to concoct a soup - too much of that? back into a baggie and the freezer.
I always have a lot of condiments and seasoning on hand - so
left-overs can be turned into an entirely different dish, and even the oven/skillet "same old" isn't - Chinese, Spanish, Italian and Jamaican spices, for example, change the whole taste.
I rarely use processed food and feel I eat very well.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2003 at 10:17AM
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