- Purpose: Spend less money, spend less time cooking when you don’t want to, spend more time with the people you love.
- Sweet spot: finding the restaurants where you go when you don’t feel like cooking but don’t have a special reason to go out to eat.
- Past vs. present: We used to spend more time cooking rather than eating out, and more time eating together…but this time we’re not going to make ourselves miserable doing it.
- Determining success: nobody’s in tears and we spent less time/money than we would have at a restaurant.
2. Determining your perfect fallback recipes
- A flowchart to help you find out your top Chez Moi recipes for main dishes, side dishes, and desserts: likability, adaptability, cost, time, and PITA factor
- Creating a pantry list
- Creating a menu for apathy nights: the regular menu
- Advanced: Should you buy equipment?
- Advanced: Eating more healthfully
3. Cooking like you just don’t care
- Cooking on autopilot (crockpots, rice cookers, minimizing prep time)
- Surplus cooking: once a month vs. the double batch
- Food prep and storage
- Magically all better sauces
- Eating: picking your base rules for behavior (yours and your family’s) and getting through a crappy night
- Advanced: Kitchen slavery–how to make your family do the work for you
- Advanced: Throw it in the freezer–what raw materials to toss, and what to save for a day with ambition
- Advanced: What not to keep in the house to make at the apathy level
4. Recipes (Apathy-level suggestions; the regular menu)
- Suggested pantry list
- Make it or buy it? Cost vs. hassle
- Pull it out of the fridge/cupboard (five minute or less with fridge and microwave)
- Crock pot
- Rice cooker
- Freezable delights
- Guilty pleasures: questionable food proudly eaten solo
- Baking (yes, baking–for those days when you’re stuck with an unprepared birthday or a @#$%ing bake sale)
- Seasonal (grilling!)
- Advanced: Lunch at work
5. Developing Chez Moi beyond the apathy level
- Cooking and eating for fun, not fuel
- Designing a cooking/eating space on a piecemeal budget
- Identifying personal flavor profiles
- Adding favorite meals and the special of the day
- Cooking ahead
- Cooking as a team
- When people come over: what to find out first, what to make, how to adapt on the fly, how to force them to do your will (i.e., clean up the kitchen)
- Deliberately inviting people to come over and trying to impress them (what were you thinking?!?)
- Cooking parties
6. Advanced recipes: The Specials
- Most common takeout and delivery
- It looks like more work than it really is
- Fancy restaurant foodie food
- Ethnic crack
- Cooking as therapy: broth, bread, red sauce, pasta, and more.
- Cooking party suggested menus
7. Recipe index (by cooking time)