Steps that save time in the kitchen | Local

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Recipes that take a little longer may not work for a busy and hectic weekday meal, but can be perfect for weekends or when you have time to prepare before heading out for the day. Slow cookers or slow cookers are a perfect choice for slow roasting or simmering foods when you can’t stand at the stove all day with a spoon in hand. A faster way to get your dinner menu to the table is to incorporate a few time-saving options, such as easy-to-prepare side dishes. Although roast pork and beans take a little longer, while they are cooking you can prepare the rest of the meal. For simple side dishes, corn casserole and glazed carrots can be made in minutes.

1 roast pork (3 ½ lb) (shoulder, sirloin tip or picnic)

½ tsp. ground black pepper

vs. crushed red pepper flakes

1 ½ tsp. browning and seasoning sauce (I use Kitchen Bouquet)

Fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped

In a casserole dish or iron pan, heat the olive oil and butter. Season the roast pork with salt and pepper. Sear 4 to 5 minutes on each side. Remove the roast and set aside. Add the chopped onions and garlic to the pan; sauté until tender. Add the chicken broth, thyme, paprika, crushed red pepper flakes and the browning and seasoning sauce. Bring to a boil. Return the meat to the same pan (or place it in a roasting pan) and pour the liquid over the meat. Cover and cook for 1h30 at 350 degrees; remove lid / foil, drizzle with liquid in pot and return to oven, uncovered, for an additional 30 to 40 minutes or until cooked through. Sprinkle with chopped parsley before serving.

2 cups of dried Roman beans, rinsed and drained

2 TABLESPOONS. chopped dried onion

vs. crushed red pepper flakes

Freshly cracked pepper to taste

Place the beans in a slow cooker. Add water to cover the beans with at least an inch of water above the beans, about 6 cups. Cook over low heat for 8 hours or until tender. Drain the beans; return the beans to the slow cooker and add the chopped onion, olive oil, crushed red pepper flakes, salt and cumin. Cook for an additional hour. Optional stirring additions: ¼ tsp. fresh parsley, ¼ tsp. minced garlic, ¼ tsp. fresh lemon juice or a sprig of rosemary.

1 can (15 oz.) Whole kernel corn

1 can (15 oz.) Creamed corn

1 can (8 oz) sour cream

1 stick of salted butter, melted

1 (8.5 oz.) Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix

¼ cup grated Parmesan

Combine the two cans of corn, sour cream, melted butter, Jiffy mixture and a pinch of black pepper. Pour into a lightly greased baking dish or 7×11 inch casserole dish. Bake for 45-50 minutes at 350 degrees; then add the cheese on top and return to the oven until melted, about 5-10 minutes.

1 package (16 oz.) Ready-to-eat baby carrots

¼ cup packed light brown sugar

1 pouch (1 oz.) Ranch Dressing Mix

Add carrots and a cup of water to a saucepan; bring to a boil, reduce heat, then cover with a lid until carrots are slightly tender, about 7-8 minutes. Melt the butter and sugar in a large skillet. Add carrots and dressing mixture; mix well. Cook over medium heat until hot and glazed; about 5 minutes. Use immediately.

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