Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Quick, Satisfying Meals

With very little time on my hands these days, I have simplified my meals considerably.  At the same time, they need to be nutritious, energizing - and (importantly for me!) - tasty!  So I'm using a lot of nuts and fruit, rice and noodles and seafood.  Combinations of these are easy to whip up in half hour periods.  They can also be prepared in stages and actual cooking time is small.  These are some nice combinations:

Cherry tomatoes (always delicious, by themselves or with spring onions or basil and an olive oil dressing, a sprinkling of good feta cheese is a bonus).

Traditional Indian snacks like poha (beaten rice) - instead of just cooking this with chopped potatoes, I add a handful of sprouts and some cashewnuts, a sprinkling of coriander leaves and lime juice.  Similarly with upama (a dry snack or 'tiffin' with roasted semolina - to this I add finely diced carrots and beans or peas, and lightly fried cashewnuts).

Stir fried prawns: in olive oil and garlic or with loads of chopped onion and garlic or just with olive oil and a sprinkling of herbs.  Also small whole fish, marinated and rolled in rice flour and then fried, for the crispiest, lightest coating possible.

Avocadoes with lime, tomato salsa - as we had in Mexico - these go well with almost anything.

Pizza, Pasta, Noodles : I buy some freshly made, half cooked pizzas and add extra vegetables - garlicky spinach or crunchy baby corn or green, red, yellow peppers...
Amongst the sweet quick breads, banana, walnut and cranberry is a delicious combination that takes just about fifteen minutes to put together (before baking).

Wholewheat pasta with a fresh tomato or mushroom sauce is filling and wholesome but what I like even more are rice noodles made the Thai way (Pad Thai), with prawns or chicken (I often use mushrooms and baby corn), spring onions, bean sprouts (when available) and egg and sprinkled with roasted, coarsely pounded peanuts and fresh lime juice.

Mango sticky rice : A traditional Thai dessert.  Sticky rice is drenched in coconut milk and eaten with fresh mango.  Instead of roasted mung beans on the side (which I find too hard when I try and make them at home), I use pine nuts.  This is one of my favourite desserts.  Nothing can beat a good mango, but this would also be nice with caramelized bananas or pineapple, I think.

#Header1_headerimg { margin: 0px auto }