I recently spoke to a group of stay-at-home moms about cooking, and it was clear to me that they were most interested in fast, easy recipes that are both nutritious and delicious. We all know how difficult it can be to get those kinds of meals on the table with jobs, chores, kids and other obligations.
Not long ago, I got an e-mail about a new Web site just for moms called Mamapedia. Mamapedia is geared toward mothers of all ages and descriptions, and the content is primarily driven by those readers. Wondering how old your daughter should be before she’s allowed to shave her legs? What to do about a toddler son who wets the bed? Questions like these are asked and answered on Mamapedia.
For our purposes, though, the cooking section is the most interesting. Here’s an example of some of the moms’ comments I saw on there recently:
I’m verrrrry tired of cooking and planning meals nothing sounds good anymore. Do you ladies have any recipes that are quick and tasty…?
My newborn decides to stay awake from 5-8 and my 3-year-old has his cranky, freak out time right as I’m trying to start dinner almost every night!
Hi, are there any mommies who do not like to cook (at all)!? If so, what do you do at meal times in your family?
Ok, I’m new at this stay at home mom thing and now I have time to cook dinner. I bought a bunch of cookbooks and most of the meals look yummy, but call for a lot of ingredients and spices I don’t even have. What do you moms cook for dinner? Can you give me an example of a week’s dinner menu?
All of the questions have spurred discussions with other moms, who offer up some great tips and recipes. I found one recipe for Chicken and Cheese soup that looks interesting, so long as you are not opposed to pasteurized processed cheese food (read: Velveeta). But where would my favorite con queso dip recipe be without Velveeta?
I’ll share the recipe. I hope some of the moms (and dads, and single busy folks) who read my blog will get some use out of Mamapedia.
4 boneless, skinless breasts (can start from frozen)
1 onion, chopped
3 carrots, slices
3 ribs celery, sliced
3 potatoes, cubed
1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 large package of Velveeta
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Place chicken, vegetables and garlic in a pot and add water to cover. Bring to a simmer and let cook for 90 minutes. Pull out the chicken and cut into bite sized pieces.
2. Drain off about half the water. Toss the chicken back in the pot. Add 1 1/2 cups milk and bring to a simmer again.
3. Slowly add 1/2 a large loaf of processed cheese food that’s been cubed. You can add the whole loaf or 2 cups of shredded cheddar/Swiss/whatever cheese you like. But, start with the processed cheese as it gives a very specific creamy texture to the soup.
4. Once the cheese has all melted you can add a can of corn that’s been drained or chopped peppers or cooked broccoli or whatever you think will taste good.
This freezes well and tastes great when it’s cold.