Thursday, July 24, 2008

"Food is an important part of a balanced diet"

Since I didn't get a job this summer (which I like to pretend was my choice, but is largely attributed to other college students pushing me out, a short span of time to actually work, and a largely shitty economy, thanks to our wondrous president), I've been beginning work on my senior thesis, studying for the GRE's (which is immensely frustrating when your GRE book has incorrect answers in it), and attempting to be a domestic goddess.

We've cooked almost every night in Portland, and I thought I'd write down some of the meals, in case there are other bored college kids around, trying to eat on as little money and effort as possible.

Toast with Honey Butter

The honey butter has been pretty key. It's sweet, easy to make, and healthier for you than straight butter. Essentially, it's just a cup of butter, 1/3 cup of honey, a teaspoon of cinnamon, and maybe some vanilla extract, if you have it. We don't. Throw all of it in a pot, heat it up until it's liquid, mix it well, then throw it in a tupperware container and put it in the fridge. It really is excellent.

Eggs, specifically with salsa/hot sauce
To go with the toast and honey butter, we've been eating lots of eggs. Omelets, fried eggs, scrambled, and poached. I think the big secret is to add some cheddar cheese and hot sauce to it (after it's cooked). The hot sauce omelets are particularly good with peppers, mushrooms, onions, and cheddar. Kind of like a fiesta for your mouth. As for the poached eggs, they're better for you because you don't need to grease anything when you make them. You need to get at least 3 inches of water in a medium pot boiling, then remove it from heat. Add a little vinegar (it keeps the egg together) and some salt. Crack the eggs right into the now-simmering water, cover the water, and let it sit for 2 and a half or 3 minutes (depending on how firm you want the yolks). The timing is key - too long, you get hard-boiled. Too short, you get raw eggs (aka, salmonella).

Fried/Grilled Tofu
We add this to most meals for protein. It's cheaper than meat, good for you, and easy to make. It has to be the firm (or extra-firm) kind, otherwise it just disintegrates. We often just throw it on the George Foreman Grill plain, or you can dip it in a beaten egg, then cover it with breadcrumbs, and fry it in a little oil.

Peanut butter noodles
Probably one of my favorites. The sauce is about half a cup of peanut butter (chunky or smooth, your choice), 1/4 cup soy sauce, 1 tablespoon grated ginger, 1 tablespoon chopped garlic, 1/4 cup soy milk (or regular milk, or water) and hot sauce to taste. Mix until smooth, and a little runny. Can go over spaghetti noodles. I always play with the ingredient amounts to taste. Tofu and other veggies go great in the sauce.

Ramen Salad
Brit's favorite. Make a regular salad with any veggies you want, then get a package of Ramen (probably chicken, beef, or vegetable flavored...nothing too weird), and break up the dried noodles all over the salad. They're great for salad crunchies. For a salad dressing, mix the ramen powder packet with 1/2 cup olive oil, 1/4 cup white vinegar, 2 tablespoons of soy sauce, a tablespoon of sugar.

Pesto Pasta
Easy. Spaghetti with pesto from a jar. Throw some tofu on top.

Basil, Tomato, and Mozzarella
Slice a tomato, put the slices flat on a plate. Put a slice of mozzarella on each tomato, then a leaf of basil on top. Drizzle with olive oil, and add some salt and fresh ground pepper. Goes great with the pesto pasta.

Eggplant Parmesan
Slice up half a medium eggplant, dip each piece in an egg batter and breadcrumbs, and then fry in a small amount of oil. Lay the eggplant flat in a dish, cover with spaghetti sauce, slices of mozzarella, and half a cup of parmesan. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes.

Macaroni and Cheese and Hot Dogs
For some reason, they just go really well together. Make mac and cheese from a box, cook some hot dogs, slice hot dogs over mac and cheese. VoilĂ .

So, that's pretty much it. As for the few times we haven't cooked, Subway, sushi, Thai, and bubble tea have seemed to suffice. That's all from the Amanda cooking show. Stay tuned for more next week from the domestic goddess.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You totally stole my salsa omelet idea.