Simple Menu's a Classic

From p. 18 of the November/December 2007 Issue
of Simple & Delicious

Chicken a la King Meal

Chicken a la King Meal

Whether it's for her husband, grandkids, children or others, Ruth Lee of Troy, Ontario has always enjoyed preparing tasty meals with a healthy twist. "Simplicity and variety are key elements in my cooking, but I always put nutrition first and use lots of fruits and vegetables," she says.

Ruth first learned to create new menus as a teenage nursing-home cook, and later honed those skills as a cook for a private school. "The diets of those at the nursing home were extremely varied due to health issues," she recalls. "At the school, we focused on creating nutrition-packed menus that were appealing to the eye."

These days, Ruth works part-time as a dog groomer and acts as a caregiver to her three youngest grandchildren. "I love my slow cooker because it allows me to prepare the bulk of my main meal before my house fills up," she writes. "I also rely on dishes I've frozen for busy evenings or to send with my husband, Doug, when he leaves for work."

Besides feeding her husband and grandkids most days, Ruth has organized a group of 19 to cook meals for the local Ronald McDonald House every Friday. "To save money, I plan menus around whatever is on sale at the store," she says. "I avoid convenience products and buy most of my produce at the local outdoor market."

The supper Ruth shares here is a favorite from her days as a school cook. Comforting Chicken a la King has a thick and creamy sauce that's perfect over biscuits or rice. "I've been making this for 30 years," says Ruth. "It's a wonderful way to create a quick lunch or dinner with leftover chicken."

For an easy and colorful salad, Ruth serves Tomatoes with Feta Cheese. "I make this no-fuss dish at least once a month," she writes. "It's a great way to use up fresh summer tomatoes and adds zip to winter tomatoes, too."

Black Forest Sundaes make a sweet ending to the meal, and best of all, they take just 5 minutes to prepare! "My husband and grandchildren just love them," Ruth says.