I am a huge fan of semi-homemade.

Because I love to cook.  I love to love people with food.  I love to be enjoyable when I sit at my table to share life with those who are gathered there.

And sometimes it is impossible to experience all of those loves, simultaneously, with from-scratch cooking.

So thank goodness for the modern convenience of semi-homemade….and Costco.

When I am pressed for time, I have found that adding a few fresh ingredients to pre-made products can create an inviting meal in a fraction of the time.

A sprinkling of fresh herbs, freshly grated Parmesan, and a few grinds of fresh pepper transforms an ordinary bowl of noodles, jarred sauce, and frozen meatballs into something lovely and satisfying.

Or finishing orange chicken (purchased in the freezer section at Costco and baked in my oven) with thinly sliced green onions and a light sprinkling of toasted sesame seeds, served with steamed rice that is elevated by the addition fresh cilantro and a squeeze of fresh lime juice creates a dish that is easy to make and pleasing to all of the senses.

You don’t have to cook from scratch to serve up a meal that says, “I care about you” to loved ones at your table.  You just have to serve a meal with love. 

Semi-homemade and reheated premade products – enhanced by a thoughtful finishing touch – are a great way to say to nourish the bodies and souls of those gathered around your table for a shared meal.  From scratch cooking really is optional.  Especially when short-cuts enable you to engage with the people gathered around your table in ways that are hospitable, not frazzled.

I believe this strongly, I live this often, and I’m adding a tab to my recipes page for “Semi-Homemade recipes and menus”.

Here’s a few recipe links that have been recently added:

If you have any ideas for semi-homemade goodness, please share with us in the comments section.

Happy Cooking!