Gourmet instant ramen
Recommended by Max James Hill
If you’re a university student living on your own, chances are you’re more than familiar with instant ramen. These dollar-a-bag delights are OK on their own, but you can turn a mediocre meal into something extraordinary by following these simple steps.
Step 1. Buy better ramen. My favourite brands are Shin Ramyun, Mama, and Maruchan. Please don’t buy Mr. Noodles.
Step 2. Only use half the seasoning packet. The whole thing will overpower any other flavours you want to add.
Step 3. Add green onion, pepper flakes, and an egg to the broth while it boils. The egg will come out creamy and delicious.
Step 4. If you’ve got the cash, head to a nice produce place for some bok choy, bean sprouts, and mushrooms. If not, a bag of frozen vegetables (carrot, peas, and corn) will work fine.
Step 5. Add your own sauces and condiments — vinegar and miso paste work wonders. Fish sauce will also do, if you’ve got some lying around.
Step 6. Splash in a little lemon juice or milk at the end (but not both, unless you like curdled dairy) and you’ve got yourself a delicious bowl of ramen.
Everything but the kitchen sink curry
Recommended by Courtney Miller
If you’re looking to make a large, one-pot solution to your dinners this week, this is your best option. Making one large curry and portioning it out in some containers is a great way to have home-cooked meals all week. You can use any vegetables you have on hand, and anything in the fridge or pantry. If you buy a package of lemongrass (usually around $2), freeze the extra stalks to use at a later date. If you skip the lemongrass, it’ll still be delicious, just not as delicious. Curry paste doesn’t go bad for a long time. Store extra in the fridge for next time.
Heat a big pot on medium-high, add oil when hot.
Add lemongrass, garlic, and ginger. Stir for 30–60 seconds. Add onions, carrots, celery, potatoes, turnip, and rutabaga. Cook until onions are translucent, stirring often. Add protein and cook until browned.
Add curry paste, stirring it around for one minute.
Add half the stock and stir until curry paste dissolves. Add remaining stock, soy sauce, and sugar. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 20 minutes (the longer you simmer, the more flavour will come out in your dish).
Stir in coconut milk, mushrooms, cauliflower, and bell pepper. Bring back to a boil. Cook for five minutes. If you have leafy greens to add, add them now, and cook for three minutes.
Season with salt, pepper, lime juice, and cilantro. Goes well over rice or noodles.
4 tbsp vegetable oil
1 stick lemongrass
2 tsp minced garlic
1 tbsp ginger, minced
2 onions, chopped
4 carrots, diced
6 sticks celery, diced
2 potatoes, peeled, diced
1 turnip, diced
1 rutabaga, diced
2–3 cups protein (tofu/chicken/pork/beef/beans/lentils/etc.)
2 tbsp, heaping, curry paste
4 cups stock (chicken or vegetable, or possible substitute: water)
3 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp sugar
2 cans coconut milk
1 cup halved mushrooms
1 head cauliflower, diced
1 bell pepper, diced
2 cups leafy greens
3 tbsp lime juice (optional)
Cilantro, chopped (optional)
Baked Kraft Dinner
Recommended by Tamara Connor
If you’re total trash but want to feel a little less greasy, I suggest spicing up a good ol’ box of KD. This Kraft Dinner bake is pretty simple.
Step 1. Make a box of Kraft Dinner. You’ll need some margarine and a splash of milk.
Step 2. Grate up some cheese and mix it into your Kraft Dinner.
Step 3. Add a can of tuna.
Step 4. Warm up some frozen peas and toss them in.
Step 5. Pour everything into an oven-safe dish and sprinkle more cheese on top.
Step 6. Put it in the oven at 350 C for 10–15 minutes!
And there you have it. The perfect way to disguise your cooking incompetence.
Recommended by Jessica Pickering
This is a great recipe because it’s simple, cheap, filling, and heats up well the next day.
Step 1. Preheat the oven to 350 C and grease an oven-safe dish.
Step 2. Cover the bottom of the dish with two cups of chow mein noodles, then layer on top a sliced zucchini, a small diced onion, and a sliced tomato or red pepper.
Step 3. Pour one cup of broth, vegetable or chicken, over all of it.
Step 4. Season with salt and pepper (and fresh basil if you feel like being fancy), then bake for an hour, using more broth if it starts drying out.
Step 5. Top with shredded cheese and broil until it melts.
Recommended by Phoebe Lim
If you’re anything like me, you love food but hate cooking. Especially in the morning when you’re groggy from pulling an all-nighter on that term paper or project presentation. Well, fear not! Overnight oats require zero cooking; all you need is a jar, oats, and a few other items you likely already have or can find at your local grocery store. Mix it together in a jar, seal the lid tightly, leave it in the fridge overnight, and wake up to the cool, delicious taste of oats. I’d take this stuff over hot oatmeal any day.
You can modify it as much as you like — try mixing in different foods to make it your own.
⅓ cup Greek yogurt (sometimes I even use yogurt drinks or Kefir)
½ cup (heaping) rolled oats
⅔ cup milk
1 tablespoon chia seeds
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons honey or maple syrup
4-6 frozen strawberries, cut into smaller pieces
More veg, more fruit and 8 colours please.
More likely the best advice is to eat before coming to campus (Breakfast? Lunch?) and then 3 times a day with some food carried with you between classes, such as classic sandwiches, or home-made granola-like bars and a cheap apple and orange.
Avoid Nesters! Three times the prices off the hill at Red Apple or Triple AAA Produce on Hastings, or H-Mart, Supervalu on North Road at Lougheed.
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