The Organized Life, “Mise en Place” Oh, the things you can make!

“Mise en place” is a French phrase which translates to “put in place”


mise en place

It is referenced often in the culinary world, to describe the way chefs prepare their ingredients before cooking

Wouldn’t you love to be a chef on TV, and have little bowls of chopped ingredients, spices, and herbs neatly arranged for you,  so everything is handy and ready for assembling the final dish?




I try to do that before I make a recipe, 😂  right

a girl can dream…


I actually do it on a larger scale every few weeks or so, cleaning out the fridge, a little of this, a little of that…

to make preparing meals later in the week so much quicker


spinach and shallots


It’s a win win win  🏆 🏆 🏆

You use up what you have, which saves  💰 💰 💰

You have healthy, freshly prepared ingredients ready, which saves   ⏳   ⏰   ⌛️

Dinner time for the week just got a lot easier, which leaves more time for other things  💅  🎨  📚  🏊  ⛵️

Spend 1 hour in the kitchen and look what you can come up with!


mise en place collage

First put garlic head, {top cut off, drizzled with olive oil, salt and pepper, wrapped in foil} in the oven to roast while you prep everything else

You can also roast corn in the husk along with the garlic   🌽  🌽

They can happily hang out at 350-400 for an hour



Put bacon in the oven to slowly cook while you continue to prep,

or cook it in the skillet after the nuts, and use some of the rendered fat for sautéing your vegetables


baked bacon


If you plan the order of the foods you’ll be cooking in the skillet, you’ll never even have to clean it 👏


praline pecans


I love to have Praline Pecans on hand for salads, vegetables and desserts-  you make them quickly in a skillet by sautéing them in butter and brown sugar.  Substitute walnuts if you like

Begin your mise en place cooking  by making some nuts and keep them in a jar in your pantry

Spread them on parchment or wax paper to cool.  Any leftover butter or sugar in skillet will just be a happy addition to the onions coming along next




Cook the onions, using a 1 T butter and 1 T olive oil, or use bacon fat, on medium low heat

They can cook look low and slow to caramelize while you finish chopping and prepping other things

When the onions finish, remove to a bowl and sauté the shallots, they impart a lovely subtle flavor to things




If you do everything separately, you’ll have more flexibility later


holy trinity


Now’s the time to sauté celery or a holy trinity of celery, green pepper and onion, turn the heat up to medium now




Next do yellow squash and zucchini if you have 1 or 2 of those hanging around, they are great on a Summer Squash Pizza with roasted garlic spread on the crust


summer squash pizza


Whoops, I digress… now it’s time for the ‘shrooms




Turn the heat up to medium high and cook them quickly, stirring and turning,

they will turn golden and won’t be rubbery


sauteed mushrooms


Okay, last but not least add spinach, season it with salt and pepper, and you might need another drizzle of olive oil after the mushrooms


saute spinach


It will wilt right down, and soak up the remaining oil and yummy bits in your pan from cooking the previous ingredients.   As you stir it around, it will basically clean your skillet for you!   All you’ll have to do is give the skillet a quick rinse or wipe out


mise en place

Bowls of possibilities!



I also cooked asparagus in the microwave at some point {2 minutes on high wrapped in a towel}


fresh corn


And remember you can cook corn in the husk in the microwave too {3-4 minutes on high per ear}


mise en place 1 thepaintedapron


Now look at all the goodies you have to play with!


mise en place collage

One night we had this yummy mushroom and asparagus tart, assembled in minutes with these prepared in advance ingredients


asparagus and mushroom tart

Onions, shallots, mushrooms and asparagus were layered on puff pastry with a smear of alfredo sauce on the bottom and a sprinkle of Parmesan on top


asparagus mushroom tart

Another night, we had Boozy Corn Bake along with some simple grilled chicken


Boozy corn bake

I used some of the Praline Pecans for  Strawberry ColeslawSalad


coleslaw salad with strawberries, bacon & pecans

The squash got mixed into cooked rice for the perfect side dish with easy peasy slowcooker  Sweet Chili Pork Chops 1-2-3


summer squash with rice

You’d never guess these dishes were actually made with leftovers, and required minimal time in the kitchen!


Mushroom Tart

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

8 oz. sliced Baby Bella mushrooms

2 shallots, chopped

1/2 sweet onion, sliced and halved

12-16 asparagus spears, cooked {optional}

1/4 jar light Alfredo sauce

2 oz shaved Parmesan cheese

salt & pepper

1-2 T olive oil

1-2 T butter

1 puff pastry sheet, thaweds

Melt 1 T butter in skillet with 1 T olive oil.  Add onion and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally until golden, 15-20 minutes.  Remove to bowl.  Add shallots to pan and quickly sauté.  Set aside.  Turn heat up to medium high, add mushrooms and more butter and oil if necessary.  Quickly cook mushrooms until they are cooked through and golden, stirring often.  Set aside.

Lay puff pastry out on parchment lined baking sheet.  Pinch edges up forming rim.  Spread sauce over dough.  Top with onions, mushrooms, asparagus and shallots.  Sprinkle with cheese.  Bake at 400 for 25 minutes or until pastry is golden and cooked through.  Cut into 4 large squares for serving or smaller squares for appetizers.


vegetable tart

1 hour spent doing a little advance prep,  means a week of feeling organized, eating well, and a clean refrigerator!

🌽  🍅  🍏  🍕  🍲 🍝

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Poofing the Pillows,  Creatively Crafty















12 Responses to “The Organized Life, “Mise en Place” Oh, the things you can make!”
  1. Jenna, great tips. The mushroom and asparagus tart sounds fabulous! Happy Sunday!

  2. Your tart sounds great Jenna! Happy Sunday:@)

  3. Jodi says:

    Such wonderful ideas. And isn’t puff pastry so glorious too?!!

  4. lulu says:

    I shouldn’t be reading this right now as it’s past lunch time and I’m hungry!

  5. This is just like those magazine articles that show 5 wardrobe staples and go on to create 36 great outfits! Brilliant!

  6. Kim says:

    You’re so lucky to have people around who want to eat. I did the bath chopping and prepping back in the day when we had kids here eating us out of house and home. Can’t believe I’m saying this, but I miss those sweet days!

  7. Mary says:

    Love your organization in the kitchen Jenna! Your asparagus and mushroom tart sounds delicious!

  8. Helen Adams says:

    I love a recipe like this, delicious and fun! Thanks so much for sharing this awesome recipe with us at Full Plate Thursday!
    Miz Helen

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