On Sundays I play football (badly) and this weekend gone I did something rarely seen on a football pitch and that was to be honest and ask the referee to reverse a decision he mistakenly made in my favour. This didn’t go down very well with my team as it stopped us gaining an advantage however my answer was “I never want to win by cheating”
This got me thinking, because when it comes to my diet and cooking I always look to cheat and to cut corners, why? Because it saves me time and makes my life easier.
Often when people think about a diet or eating healthily they defeat themselves before they start by believing everything has to be home grown, natural and perfect…as if Gwyneth Paltrow, leader of the organic world was coming for dinner.
This doesn’t have to be the case, for me it is all about compromise. I ensure the majority of my ingredients are natural however I am happy to cut corners where possible.
My top 3 reasons for cheating in the kitchen
1.Time – I am sure, like me you lead a busy life, be it work, family or both. I personally don’t have the time in my day to be cooking every meal from scratch spending 30-60 mins each time, so by speeding up the process it is in fact making me more likely to cook and stick to my diet rather than just grab something quick and unhealthy when time is short.
2.Portion control – Portion control is key to success and at times we may not either know how big a portion to have or we don’t care/think about the portion sizes. A lot of foods I pick up now are pre-portioned for me which means I don’t over eat and I don’t have to think too much.
3. Laziness – I love cooking however even I can have lazy days when I cannot be bothered to prep and cook my vegetables etc.. By cheating and buying pre-prepped foods it is again removing a barrier I may put up which could lead me to unhealthy, fast food options.
Here are my 3 Top corner cutting cooking cheats
1. Packets / Sachets – packets and sachets of spices and mixes such as fajita and chilli are life savers. Ok so they may have a few ingredients in them which aren’t brilliant however the amounts of these we consume are minuscule, the benefits which are they taste great, save you time and are cheap to buy far outweigh the negatives.
2. Pre-prepped foods – Chopping vegetables is the bane of my life, I hate it and often it would stop me from cooking veg. Nowadays I mainly buy pre chopped vegetables, fresh and frozen. I also find portioning and cooking rice a bit of an effort at times so buying pre-cooked bags of rice saves me a lot of time, effort and washing up. You can also get some tasty flavours which adds variety to your diet. The only negative I see with pre-prepped foods is they are slightly more expensive however if you don’t mind paying a small premium I would highly recommend it.
3. Jars / Marinades – Just like sachets and packets, jars are a superb way of packing your meals full of flavour in no time at all. In the past I would tell people to stay away from jars and sachets due to the ingredients however many of them are fine. For many cooking doesn’t come naturally and confidence isn’t that high, jars can be a great way of getting you to enjoy your food and stick to your diet without the pressure of getting good in the kitchen.
Ask yourself, what would the benefits be to you of cutting corners in the kitchen? And how could you cut corners and make your life easier?