Saturday, October 09, 2010

Healthy, simple, hassle-free and cheap lunch ideas.

Really. I wasn't lying when I typed the above (and I'm still not lying now!).

Today, I'm going to share a recipe for a lunch box which is CHEAP, healthy and simple to put together.

See, a colleague of mine eats super healthily, everyday, his mum actually packs his lunch for him which not only tastes good, but is sure appealing to the eyes as well. Of late, I've been motivated to bring food to work (more healthy, and it sure beats going out in the blazing hot sun).

Was googling bento box recipes, but I think I would fail in assembling the food into cartoon characters (think Hello Kitty!) etc. actually I can't be arsed cutting vege and fruit into little bits

So with bento boxes NOT being an option for me, decided to head to Tesco and got:

1) Chicken pieces (the breast part) - RM 4.30 (two pieces)
2) New potatoes - RM 1.09 (A little more than 500 grams)
3) Sweetcorn on the cob - RM 3.50

to make Pan-fried chicken with garlic and herbed new potatoes with corn-on-the-cob.

Pan-fried chicken:

Chicken breasts
Garlic powder
Brown sauce(HP)
Worcestershire sauce (Lea & Perrins)
Tomato sauce

1) Marinade it at least half an hour before. I used pepper, salt, garlic powder, brown sauce, pinch of sugar, Worcestershire sauce and tomato sauce in mine. For a saltier taste, omit sugar/ up the salt or brown sauce. For a sweeter taste, omit salt/ up the sugar or add honey (it will caramelize the chicken). To make it a little bit sourish and tangy, add the juice of quarter of a lemon to the marinade. Personally, I prefer the chicken to be sweeter but hey! It's your chicken!

2) Poke holes in the chicken before drowning it in the marinade or make small slits all over using a sharp knife. This helps the chicken 'absorb' the marinade better. I like to put the chicken pieces in a plastic bag. Tie the bag and shake it so the marinade spreads evenly.

3) Pan fry the chicken. Add a bit of oil if you like, I pan fried the chicken without any oil, letting it sizzle in its own juices and fat. Make sure chicken it cooked through. Check by cutting chicken to see if meat is still raw. Pour any remaining marinade onto chicken when cooking to make a bit of gravy if you like.

4) Remove chicken from pan. Put aside to cool.


Garlic and herbed new potatoes:

New potatoes
Mixed herbs
Garlic powder

1) Wash new potatoes throughly. Scrub with brush to ensure all mud is removed. Remove eyes with sharp knife or just leave them on (I do, and I'm still alive and blogging hoho)

2) Boil water. Water level should be more than enough to cover the amount of potatoes you are cooking. While waiting for water to boil, cut potatoes into halves or quarters (depending on your preference). Add potatoes to boiling water. To check if they are cooked, poke with fork. Once fork comes out clean, potatoes are ready to be drained.

3) Drain water. Put potatoes into large bowl. Add a bit of butter, mixed herbs, a bit of pepper and garlic powder. Mix potatoes so all the ingredients coat potatoes evenly.



Sweet corn

1) Boil water. Water level should be enough to cover the corn. While waiting for water to boil, de-husk corn and get rid of the 'hairs'. Cut corn into 2 or 3 parts evenly. When water comes to a boil, add corn.

2) Cook for around 8 minutes, ensuring corn is thoroughly boiled. Boil the corn longer if you would like the corn to be softer.


Look at my lunch!

Total cost:

Chicken (RM2.15) + Potatoes (RM0.55) + Corn (RM 1.25/2 = RM0.60 because I used half a piece of corn) = RM 3.30 (approximately 68 pence wtf)

Note: If you're cooking this the day before like I did, I heated the chicken (only the chicken) up the next day before eating my lunch. If you can't stand eating cold potatoes or corn then I'd suggest packing the lunch into a microwavable container and plonking the entire container into the microwave right before eating. Happy cooking! Share with me how your attempts were like IF you do try my recipe out okay?

ah ling

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