Wouldn’t it be great if a little prep work on a sunday could mean super easy lunches and dinners the whole week through? Read on my friends!
Life is busy when you work full time, (I’m sure this isn’t coming as a surprise to anyone!) and so I try to pack a lot into the 5-9. I normally get home from work at around 5.30pm (I work 9-5 and am very fortunate that I only live a 20 minute walk away from my work – yay!) and once I’ve sorted myself out, I do an hour of activity, usually running or Just Dance-ing. Then I shower before I make dinner.
Its best for me to make very quick dinners on weeknights, since by the time I’ve done all that I’m liable to be absolutely starving and start eating anything in the kitchen. I’ve mentioned before about how I tend to buy the same staples every week which I can then turn into a variety of different meals.
THEN the other week I took another step towards being organised in the kitchen – I spent 30 minutes on a Sunday evening (when I was making another meal anyway) roasting all the veggies that I love to eat. I coat with olive or vegetable oil, salt and pepper, and then roast up :
- 2/3 quartered red onions
- 1 large sweet potato, cut into medium chunks (say 1cm cubes)
- 1 large courgette, as the sweet potato
- 3 large peppers, cut into large strips (as you would to dip in hummus)
- 1 head of broccoli (Add about half way through the cooking time)
- 10 medium mushrooms (I buy the cheapest ones and add them with about ten minutes to go)
That amount of veggies keeps me going for five lunchtimes, plus probably 3-4 evening meals.
And once they’d cooled down I added some tomato pasta sauce (I guess making it similar to ratatoille) stored them in a plastic container in my fridge and dipped into them all week. Best idea ever! Another great thing about this is that you can stretch the veggies out even further with canned tuna or beans (I like butter beans, chickpeas, kidney beans and canneloni beans) and make them into lots of lovely meals! And its super healthy because you’re getting protein too!
Here’s what I made with them
-lunch every day, one toasted pitta filled with hummus, plus veggies (no morning chopping or faffing before work, plus its filling AND cheap. I keep pittas in my freezer so they’re always on hand)
-vegetable pasta – With your veggies already cooked, you can be eating this in the time it takes to cook your spaghetti (about 4 minutes!!)
-vegetable burritos – again, so fast!
-vegetable risotto – I fried newly chopped onion with garlic and added the risotto rice and stock, and then added my cooked chopped vegetables to warm up
-quesadillas – add tuna or some kidney beans for protein (as I’ve mentioned before, the flour tortillas you can buy last FOREVER, or around a month for me anyway)
-veggie curry – simply cook your rice and heat your pre-prepared veggies up with a bought curry sauce (I always keep a stash of mini-naans in my freezer)
-chickpea and vegetable casserole with cous cous – again, you simply have to eat things and add a tomato sauce. Oh and boil some water to make the cous cous!
In case of even more extreme laziness, I also keep certain foods in my fridge and freezer so that I can eat well in spite of doing literally no cooking whatsoever, such as
- lovely soup (Covent Garden or New York soup company are the best but I only buy when they’re on offer)
- frozen veggie burgers (we get the tesco ones, they’re packed full of veggies with a breadcrumb exterior)
- frozen fishcakes
- frozen pizza! – again to be thrifty I normally only buy when they’re on offer
I hope this post has give you some inspiration on eating relatively well in spite of busyness! Let me know if you have any other shortcuts or tips I should know about!