Home' Advocate Communications : Fiordland Advocate 11 April 2013 Contents WHAT’S COOKING
Page 14 | 11 April, 2013
A recent email from a reader
requesting suggestions for
nutritious meals for her student
son who is flatting, got me thinking
back to my own ‘scarfie’ days.
Those were the days when cheap cuts of meat were readily available.
Sheep hearts were ten cents each and were great for heart and kidney
pie. My flatmates loved my ‘steak and kidney’ pie.
Today, low-cost, protein packed beans – for example kidney, black,
cannellini, chick peas – can help stretch a meat meal. Beef and bean
chilli, with added tomatoes, onion, diced carrots and peas, served with
a potato mash, is a well-balanced meal.
To provide a balanced, nutritious meal your plate should look something
like this: one half should be a mixture of at least four vegetables such
as carrot, onion, tomatoes, beans, spinach, silver beet. One-quarter
should be a starchy product such as rice, pasta, potatoes, pumpkin or
wholegrain bread. The last quarter comprises the protein component
such as meat or meat alternatives – fish, dairy food, eggs, beans or
A good non-stick frying pan is an essential kitchen helper. Cooking
a meal in one pan is the ideal. It saves on washing-up as well as the
electricity or gas. One-pan meals are generally quick to prepare and
cook. Stir-fries are an example.
When preparing ingredients for a stir-fry, thinly slice the meat and
vegetables in similar sized pieces. Often the vegetables will take longer
to cook than the meat. So you may wish to stir-fry them first, remove to
a warm plate, then cook the meat, returning the vegetables to the pan
when the meat is just cooked. This way the vegetables also keep their
appealing bright colour.
Crockpots are relatively inexpensive and are also great fuel savers.
Meat and vegetables can bubble gently during the day providing a
well-balanced meal for the whole flat. All I suggest is that if using onion,
please pan-fry it first to prevent a raw onion flavour overpowering the
Stock up on low-cost, quality herbs, spices and Asian spice pastes
to help vary meals. The ingredients for a stir-fry can be served
Mediterranean-style one night seasoned with oregano and basil then
Thai-style another night with red curry paste and coconut cream. Any
leftover spice paste should be refrigerated and coconut cream can be
frozen in ice cube trays.
1 head broccoli
1 large carrot
11⁄2-2 cups dry macaroni
1 cup frozen peas
Sauce: 1 large egg, lightly beaten
11⁄2 cups milk
1 tablespoon each: flour,
wholegrain mustard or similar
pinch each: chilli flakes, salt
freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 cups grated tasty cheese
Cut the broccoli into 3cm florets.
Dice the carrot.
Bring a large saucepan (12 cups
at least) of water to the boil.
Slowly sprinkle in the macaroni so
the water doesn’t go off the boil.
Cook until just tender, about 12
Add the broccoli, carrot and peas
and simmer for 3-4 minutes, until
Meanwhile, whisk the egg, milk,
flour, mustard, chilli flakes, salt
and pepper in a bowl.
Drain the pasta and vegetables
through a sieve or colander. Place
the egg mixture in the empty
saucepan. Whisk over low heat
until thickened. Stir in the cheese,
until melted. Return the pasta and
vegetables to the saucepan and
Serve in a large baking dish or
individual ramekins sprinkled with
finely grated parmesan cheese
or sliced tomato or chopped
herbs or dried breadcrumbs or a
selection of the aforementioned.
Great served with a salad of sliced
tomatoes, onion and chopped
parsley and drizzle of lemon juice.
Flatters’ one-pot mac, veg & cheese
2 teaspoons canola oil
6-8 beef or pork sausages
2 medium onions
1 large apple, peeled, cored and
1 tablespoon curry powder
420g can condensed tomato soup
11⁄2 cups frozen peas, slightly
1⁄2 cup each: sultanas or raisins,
1⁄2 teaspoon beef stock powder
freshly ground black pepper to
Heat the oil and gently fry the
sausages on low heat, until lightly
coloured. Turn frequently.
Remove from the pan. Drain on
paper towels. Cut each sausage
Sauté the onions – stirring
frequently – until softened and
golden. Add the apple and sauté
for 1 minute. Stir in the curry
powder, heat for about 1 minute,
then add the soup, peas, sultanas
or raisins, water, stock powder
Bring to a simmer, cover and cook
for about 5 minutes.
Add the sausages and simmer for
a further 5 minutes. Great served
with mashed potatoes or rice.
1⁄2 cup blanched peanuts
2-3 tablespoons canola or peanut
1 each: onion, carrot, red pepper
2 courgettes, sliced
1 cup cauliflorets
1 tablespoon Thai red curry paste
400g skinned and boned chicken,
cut into 5mm wide strips
3⁄4 cup frozen peas
1⁄2-3⁄4 cup coconut milk
1 tablespoon brown sugar
Place the peanuts in a wok or
deep non-stick frying pan with 1
teaspoon of oil and stir-fry for 1-2
minutes, until golden. Lift out with
a slotted spoon and place aside.
Add a tablespoon more of the
oil to the wok. Stir-fry the onion,
carrot, pepper, courgettes and
cauliflorets for 2-3 minutes, until
crisp-tender. Remove to a bowl.
Add the remaining oil to the wok
and cook the curry paste on low
heat for 30 seconds. Stir in the
chicken, peas, coconut milk,
sugar and peanuts. Cook for 1-2
Return the vegetables to the pan
and stir to coat with the sauce.
Great served on boiled rice or
Thai-style stir-fry with coconut cream
1 tablespoon canola oil
2 each: medium onions, carrots,
1 tablespoon curry powder
11⁄2 cups each: red lentils, peeled
and diced kumara
21⁄2 cups vegetable stock
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 pepper (capsicum), diced
400g can diced tomatoes in juice,
1⁄4 cup chopped parsley or
Heat the oil in a large, non-stick
frying pan. Add the onions and
carrots and cook – stirring – until
the onions are soft. Stir in the
curry powder then place in a slow
cooker. Wash the lentils well.
Place in the slow cooker.
Add all the remaining ingredients
except the coriander – to the
lentils. Cover and cook on low for
5-6 hours. Serve garnished with
the parsley or coriander and serve
with a crisp salad.
Serves about 6
Lentil & vegetable crockpot
A vegetarian delight using low-cost, protein-packed lentils. No crockpot/slowcooker? Then place in a
casserole dish, cover, and cook for 11⁄2 hours at 170°C. Or cook on very low heat in a heavy-based saucepan
for 1-11⁄2 hours.
To make cauliflorets, cut the cauli head into 2.5cm pieces. Veggies can be varied according to the season.
Vary the recipe by adding a can of drained pineapple chunks, a
chopped pepper (capsicum), frozen beans or corn.
Milk, egg and cheese provide the protein in this tasty dish.
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