Seared steak with mustard spinach | Recipe report card

19 Apr

One reason I am liking How to Cook Everything Fast so far is that the recipes are for near-complete meals. Half the planning is done! In fact, if I was single, they would be complete meals, but since I’m cooking for two other people with opinions about food and also trying to make sure that the Bug eats at least one serving of veggies at dinner, I like to add one more thing to them. Fortunately, each recipe comes with a list of sides you can make, from the crazy easy (like warmed tortillas) to something a little more involved, like mashed potatoes.

Seared steak with mustard spinach, How to Cook Everything Fast, p. 708

  • Meal: dinner, sometime last week
  • Kid tried?: Yes.
  • Keeper?: Yes. But mix the mustard in better next time.
  • Cook’s grade: A. The steak was easy and tasty–a great way to add some red meat to our weekly meals. (I find it’s easy to cook chicken and pork, but I don’t have that many go-to recipes for beef.) I didn’t pay close enough attention when I added the mustard to the spinach, so some bites had no mustard and some had waaaaaaay too much. But with a tiny bit more care, this would be a great recipe to add to the repertoire.
  • Kid’s grade: A-. The Bug was not interested in her own steak, but could not stop eating mine. This was the first time she really showed interest in beef. Or non-chicken meat, for that matter. (Or, if I’m being perfectly frank, non-chicken-finger-meat.) Cut up into small enough pieces, it was easy enough for her to chew (except the two pieces that most decidedly weren’t, which reminded me why I hated steak growing up). I think she even tried the spinach, too, but one bite had too much mustard on it, which turned her off.

Cooking tips for busy parents:

  • Use bagged spinach. I know, it’s easy enough to use a salad spinner (and Bug LOVES helping by agitating the greens in water and pressing the salad spinner button). But bagged spinach gets this dish on the table just that much faster and with one fewer dirty dish.

Skin-on mashed potatoes, How to Cook Everything Fast, p. 961

  • Meal: dinner, sometime last week
  • Kid tried?: No.
  • Keeper?: Yes.
  • Cook’s grade: A. It’s mashed potatoes. How can you go wrong? Before I left to get the Bug at daycare, I cooked the potatoes with our pressure cooker, which sped things up. All I had to do when I got home was mash the potatoes and add the milk, etc. Which, to be fair, my husband did. I threw in some rosemary from our garden to make it fancier.
  • Kid’s grade: Incomplete. The Bug used to love mashed potatoes but isn’t into them right now. Like any kid, I’m sure she’ll be back on them before long.

Cooking tips for busy parents:

  • Use a potato masher, rather than a ricer. I generally prefer the ricer for mashed potatoes, but the skins will get caught up in the ricer and add to the post-cooking prep time.
  • Do what you do on Thanksgiving: cook this beforehand and reheat it just before dinner.



One Response to “Seared steak with mustard spinach | Recipe report card”


  1. Seared pork chops with apples and onions | Recipe report card | Seamripper - July 18, 2015

    […] even fried chicken tenders). And she ate a few apples with the onion. I served it with mustard spinach, which was too spicy for her. That’s a good side, though, for anything you make in a skillet, […]

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