Category Archives: Cooking and Food Preparation

Quick and Easy Meal of the Month – Chopped Beef and Ramen Noodles


Image courtesy of Mel


ATLANTA – Written by Mel

Who hasn’t had Ramen noodles?  This is a rhetorical question because I want to believe that just about everyone has tasted these.  They aren’t the best meal but they certainly hit the spot when you are craving them, or you want a low-priced meal option.  For those who honestly don’t know what these are:  Ramen noodles are Asian noodles that usually come dried with a small packet of spices in the package to add after softening the noodles by cooking them.  I have eaten them this way for years (as I’m sure you have too) but recently, I decided to do something a little different to make the meal more appealing.

I had some beef Ramen noodles and I decided that it would be a great idea to add real beef to the mix.  So I grabbed some chopped beef from my fridge and added it.  This is a very simple dish that you can prepare quickly for yourself or your kids.

Start with the meat.  Usually I just use chopped beef from the freezer section of the grocery store.  But if you have left over pieces of beef from another meal, you can use these instead.  Start by lightly saute the beef to warm it up but to jazz up the flavor, you can cut up and add some onions and bell peppers.  You could even add some stir-fry vegetables, salt, pepper or other seasonings to mix if you like.  While this is sauteing, go ahead and boil the noodles.

Once the noodles are done, you can add the small packet of spice that is included with the Ramen noodles; however, I usually discard it because the flavors from the stir-fried beef is all the flavor I need.  But it is up to you.  If you are not using the packet, then completely drain the water from noodles.  Grab a plate or a bowl and place the noodles on it.  Then, layer the beef topping on the noodles once its finished cooking.

Finally, enjoy!  Keep in mind that you can also make this same meal using chicken or shrimp.

How did your dish turn out? Share your thoughts about this dish in the comments or on our Facebook group.

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Quick and Easy Meal of the Month – Shrimp, Vegetables, and Quinoa

Image courtesy of Mel


ATLANTA – Written by Mel


We are all busy!  There just isn’t enough time to sit down with friends or family to enjoy a tasty, home-cooked meal.  But you just have to do it — you have to commit to a home-cooked meal with friends and family as much as you can.

To help you to do this, I have created this segment of the blog to give you an idea for something simple and delicious so that you can enjoy family time — together.

I recently started eating quinoa and I have to say it tastes good but it doesn’t have much of a flavor unless you get a box with seasons added.  For this dish, I used Near East roasted red pepper and basil quinoa.  I then added shrimp, fresh cut peppers and onions to this dish.  It takes about 25 minutes to prepare the meal.

First, put the quinoa on to cook since it will take the longest to prepare.

While this is doing its thing, go ahead and prepare the other half of the meal.  You can start by cutting up the peppers and some onions.  I usually dice my peppers  and onions for most dishes but for this one, I used strips.  You can also purchase sliced peppers and onions from the frozen section of your grocery store (just make sure you let them thaw before using) but fresh peppers will really make a huge difference with this dish.

Then, turn your attention to preparing the shrimp.

You can purchase already cooked shrimp to make this process very easy.  Otherwise, you will have to peel and de-vein them yourself.  Either way make sure they are thawed.  If you opt for raw shrimp, then you will need to cook them before sautéing them with the peppers.  You can boil them on low on the stove or take the juice of a lemon and apply it liberally all over the shrimp.  This method turns the shrimp pink but may give the shrimp a lemon taste.  If you like, you can rinse the lemon juice off before sautéing.

Finally, when the veggies are cut and the shrimp are ready, pour some olive oil in a skillet and lightly sauté the shrimp and vegetables.

Add a little salt and pepper or any other season if you like.  After the shrimp and veggies are done cooking, drain them.  By this time, the quinoa should be also finished.  After about 7-10 minutes of letting the meal cool, serve the dish with the shrimp and veggies over the bed of quinoa.  You can serve it right after heating it but I find that the meal is more tasty when it’s had time to cool.  If you don’t like either of these ingredients in this recipe, consider substituting white, brown or yellow rice and chopped chicken.

How did your dish turn out? Share your thoughts about this dish in in the comments or on our Facebook group.


Don’t forget to follow our social media pages and check back for another quick and easy dinner idea.