Britain's Jamie Oliver released a 30-Minute Meals cookbook and TV show a few years ago to address the fact that it's possible to get a healthy, delicious, made-from-scratch meal on the table in less than 30 minutes. Last year he upped the ante and released his 15-Minute Meals, I'm guessing in response to the fact that for some people, 30 minutes is too long to wait.
Unfortunately, Jamie's 30- and 15-Minute Meals shows aren't available in the US, although it's possible to glimpse them now and then on YouTube. While some people dispute that it's really possible to cook these meals in 30 minutes, Jamie does have a few tricks to speed things along. He uses a lot of prewashed greens, especially arugula and baby spinach, and he always begins by turning up his oven to 'full whack,' preheating his pots and frying pans on the stove, and putting an electric kettle of water on for dishes like pasta that require boiling water. His videos on essential equipment, knife skills, serve-wear, and getting situated in the kitchen are worth visiting for more tips.
And as far as the notion that Jamie's meals can't really be made quickly, check out this sweet video of a 9-year-old boy named Oscar who makes Jamie's British Burger meal in 15 minutes:
What tricks do you use to get a healthy, home-cooked meal on the table quickly?
(Image: Dana Velden)