Lunch time. The one time of day where I dread going into the kitchen to think of what to make. Being more of a creative person, part of me doesn’t want to waltz in there and purely make a sandwich or a plain salad. I want to rustle up something that is exciting yet doesn’t take the time of day to make.
Therefore, I’m sharing two recipes for easy but exciting lunches and also ways you can interchange items to keep it fresh. Lunch does not have to be boring (although there is nothing wrong with a sandwich)
Recipe 1: Sushi Bowl
Serves 3-4 people but can be amended for smaller portions.
- Sushi Rice
- 250g of sushi rice
- 2 tbsps. Japanese Rice Wine Vinegar
- 1 tbsp. Mirin
- 2 tbsps. Caster Sugar
- 1 tbsp. Salt
Alternative: In Supermarkets you can also find readymade sushi rice that just needs put in the microwave. These can be handy for smaller portions.
- handful of tomatoes
- sesame seeds
- Optional – Sticky Chicken or Salmon or any other meat.
- crispy onions
- Sriracha mayo
Place your sushi rice in a bowl and wash with cold water, this needs repeated 3-4 times before draining in a sieve. Next add 330ml of water and the washed rice into a pan. Bring this to the boil and simmer for 10 mins with the lid on.
Tip: It is important to note that you should keep an eye on the rice regularly because it can very easily come out of the pan and bubble over.
Next turn the heat off and leave the pan to stand for 15-20 minutes with the lid on. While this is standing you should make the rice seasoning.
In a separate bowl mix together the above ingredients; Rice Wine Vinegar, Mirin, Caster Sugar and Salt (measurements above).
Transfer the rice into a bowl and fold in the seasoning mix (should be done gradually). Once mixed leave to cool (sometimes I don’t wait).
This should then be placed into your bowl of choice – you do not need too much sushi rice.
The quantity of toppings are completely up to you, just remember that sushi rice is deceptively filling.
I cut my tomatoes in quarters and tend to use baby tomatoes. The cucumber is cut into match sticks while I tend to either peel the carrot into shavings or cut matchsticks out of them. With carrots I recommend shavings.
In order to fill 3 portions I usually use around half a pepper and again just cut them lengthways. The same with the beetroot (which I get out of a jar and cut).
Place each vegetable onto the top of your rice, I tend to place them into separate bits.
Toppings such as crispy onions and sesame seeds can be found in your local supermarket and easily add depth of flavour to the bowl.
Finally drizzle your sriracha mayo onto the top. This lightly adds moisture to the dish while incorporating a bit of heat.
Optional Topping: I also sometimes include Sticky Chicken (which is actually bought out of Tesco’s freezer section and they come on sticks which I then take off), smoked salmon or tuna is also a good topping or any other meat. I would advise shredding it and placing it onto the veg.
Alternatives: You can swap the sushi rice for the likes of wholegrain rice, other toppings include; Edamame beans, Red Cabbage, Radishes, Ginger (if you have it pickled ginger is a great topping), Avocado, plain sriracha also works, or you can simply add this to mayo and make your own.
Recipe 2: Fried Potato and Egg bowl
This was entirely thought up when I was starving and wanted something quick but tasty. Makes 2 portions.
- 1 tin of Peeled New Potatoes in water (these are available from supermarkets and are ready cooked. There is nothing wrong with them and are also perfect for using in tray bakes)
- Salt and Pepper to Season
- 1-2 tsp of Italian Seasoning
- 1 tsp of Paprika (or more to taste)
- 1 tsp of garlic powder
- Around 1 tbsp of butter
- 1 large egg
First you need to drain the potatoes and roughly chop them either into halves or quarters (they come in various sizes). Then melt a nob of butter in a frying pan. Transfer the potatoes into the pan and start frying them on a medium heat. Season with a good pinch of salt and pepper. Let this fry for a few minutes, while the butter is still wet you want to add the other seasoning ingredients onto the potatoes. This includes the Italian Seasoning, Paprika and Garlic Powder. The goal is for the potatoes to be slightly crispy.
Once the potatoes are finished transfer them into your bowl of choice. Now, in the same pan, you want to melt a bit more butter and crack your egg into the pan. This is where you need to act fast. An egg should be seasoned well with salt and pepper. I usually also add a shake of Italian seasoning and Paprika while the egg is cooking (you want it so it will soak into the egg). I cook my egg sunny side up, so you want the white to fully harden and no longer sit on the top. It’s a technique that may take time to master because you also want a runny egg. I must add it definitely doesn’t take too long.
Now transfer the egg onto the potatoes and drizzle with sriracha. Enjoy!
Tip: If like me you are going to eat the second portion the next day, make the egg on the day you are actually going to eat it and reheat the potatoes in a small amount of butter so you can get them extra crispy. Alternatively, you can also cook the potatoes in a small amount of vegetable oil on either day.
Alternatives: If you don’t have/want to use the new potatoes you can chop potatoes into little cubes and fry them instead (this will take considerably longer and it is probably easier to parboil them first), alternatively you can also use ready cubed potatoes often found in the freezer areas of supermarkets. The fried egg is also nice on pretty much any leftovers, I like adding it and the sriracha to leftover couscous with veg.
I know thinking of different things to cook can be challenging so I hope this helps.
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