Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Overtime Cooking

The worst part about working over time isn't the brain drain or a long , stressful day. It's trying to get something decent to eat despite the fatigue and crankiness.It's a choice between fridge foraging or fast food, pan frying or microwaving. What's the right solution?

Coming home late can come with challenges, especially if you're hungry. Many just have a bowl of cereal and milk and call it a night. This works but  it still may not be satisfying enough. Another is turning whatever snack you have into a full blown meal. Again it's a quick fix that does have its consequences (namely weight gain and possible indigestion). A tad better is that classic standby - the drive thru window.It's easy to order that cheeseburger, fries and a soda, even easier to eat however a meal like that can be heavier at night. The caffeine in the Coke or Pepsi may keep you up half the night (not great if the next day  is another ten hour slog) along with the fries laying heavy on your stomach. If you do opt for the fast food route, then head to Wendy's or Subway. Their offerings are not as greasy as the other major chains. Wendy's has the added plus of a baked potato, a filling yet relatively light meal for a late supper.Their salads are also perfect for late night noshes, thanks to the variety of healthy ingredients like almonds and dried fruit. Subway is another great choice. You can have them make up a sandwich with healthy components such as whole wheat bread along with fresh veggies such as tomatoes, peppers and onions. The chain also has a good selection of natural juices as well.

What about going the home cooked route? This is where having leftovers comes in handy. That roast chicken or turkey can be turned into a sandwich .Leftover steak can be turned into a salad with mixed greens and grape tomatoes. It can also be ground into a kind of paste , mixed with mayo or olive oil to create a kind of deviled ham. The same can be done  with any leftover roasted ham , chicken or turkey. Those leftover  grilled veggies can be converted into a primavera sauce thanks to the addition of some olive oil and garlic. You can even add in tomato paste for a richer flavor. Crockpot cuisine is always a life saver for a home chef with a busy work schedule. Make a  dump meal, an easy melange of meat and veggies.Try a chicken casserole or an easy bean chili. Slow cookers can be used for making homemade soups, always perfect after a long , stressful day. Try a split pea that's accented with such veggies as carrots, onions and celery along with garlic and parsley for more flavor. Add ham or a ham hock to give it that rich pea soup flavor. Minestrone is another great soup that can be mixed together in the morning and eaten at night.This can be tailored to suit your tastes. Add elbow macaroni or orzo, go heavy on the onions or tomatoes, use chicken or beef broth. Bring home some rolls and a ready made salad and you've got a nice meal that nourishing and delicious.

Working overtime doesn't mean coming home to no food on the table. There are several ways to go for  eat properly after a rough work day. Don;t let your tomach get as frazzled as your mind. Treat it to warm, nutritious meal and a calm evening of relaxation.

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