Thursday, December 21, 2006
Posted by Shah cooks
Packing kiddie lunches are fun in a twisted kind of way.. it takes imagination to think up something that their finicky selves will like and is yet nutritious. Each day the lunch box comes back empty is a pat on the back. And each day it comes back untouched( not very frequently now) is to be marked and pondered on. So its a relief to pack an adult lunch, adding spices and veggies liberally, without worrying if the combination will be appreciated (and tolerated) or not. So some days I decide to pack lunch for my self or my better half and then its time for all the easy breezy recipes to come into play.
If not leftovers, what then? It has to be a one dish recipe taking up not more than 10-15 minutes of my precious morning time or late night time( when I would rather be watching a movie). Fried rice is one such versatile dish and when made at home, so nutritious and easy. No more of the greasy rice from the fast food places which has made it synonmous with stale food. Its rather a delicate cooked rice just tossed for a minute with vegetables and seasoned while hot. You could add shrimp, chicken or egg to add protein to it and its a complete meal.
Egg Fried Rice:
Cooked Rice- 2 cup
Green chilies-1 finely chopped
Cilantro- 1/4 cups finely chopped
Scallions/ Green Onion-1/2 cup very finely shredded
Bean sprouts-1 cup (Optional)
Light Soy sauce-2 tablespoons
Garlic clove --1 finely chopped
Black pepper- 1/2 tsp
Salt-1/2 tsp or to taste
Beaten Egg-1 or 2
Oil- 2 1/2tbsp
Cut all the vegetables very finely into small cubes of almost the same size. The vegetables and spices have to be all cut up and handy before you fire up the pan. Keep aside some of the green stems of the scallions for garnish.
Heat 1 tsp of oil in a non stick pan and scramble the beaten egg till cooked. Keep aside.
Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large shallow pan or wok and add all the vegetables and garlic. Stir fry for about 2-4 minutes. Add the rice and mix thoroughly. Add the salt, pepper and soy sauce, stir thoroughly and check seasoning. Add the cooked egg, bean sprouts,the chopped green stems of the scallions and the cilantro. Remove from heat and let it cool before packing into lunch boxes. This one was made in the morning and hurriedly photographed before packing it.
Another common lunch packed for my little one is ravioli. I keep store bought ready made raviolis (yes, I don't make them) with chicken and cheese filling, and cook them as needed. 4-5 pieces is the most he can eat. After cooking them in water and draining, I season them with a bit of olive oil heated with oregano or thyme, a pinch of nutmeg, red pepper flakes or pepper, garlic powder and salt. It adds flavor and tastes good even when it is cold. Add strawberries, a brownie slice,milk and carrots or any other vegetables and fruits of choice.
This Post was written by Shaheen from Malabar Spices.