Fry-Up Bowl – An Easy Meal For Anytime!

 

“If you can eat with mates or friends or family, I mean, it’s such a brilliant thing isn’t it? If you feel really rubbish and you have a nice bit of food it makes you feel good, you know?” 
~  Jamie Oliver

 

Fry-Up Bowls are a favourite easy meal in our house.

To be honest they are not always 100% fried, and the ingredients often change, but they are always served in a bowl, so that’s something consistent I guess.

We eat this kind of food when a decent breakfast is called for. But it also works well for lunch and dinner, and is a fabulous way of using left-overs. In fact I often cook more food than can be eaten in one meal just so that I have left-overs to use at another. Don’t you?

Also, those potatoes? Totally worthy of being cooked ON THEIR OWN for immediate consumption when comfort food is called for or when the football is on!

Here are the basic ingredients:

Cold boiled potatoes or any leftover roast vegetables

Some chopped up green vegetables that I can quickly boil or fry

Salady things – chopped or ripped

Protein – This could be eggs; cold cooked meat from a previous meal; sausages, bacon, or any other meat that suits a quick fry-up.

Fermented Vegetables and a dab of butter to finish.

*Use variations of any of the above based on what you have to hand.

Method:

Squashed Crunchy Potatoes – Oh, we love these! I often boil up a heap of spuds, have some for dinner and then use others to chop into pasties or pies, to mash and add to the top of some savoury thing I’ve whipped up and some for fry-ups or as Squashed Crunchies. (Did I mention I’m the Queen of Leftovers?)

So, start with some boiled and well-drained or cold potatoes. Turn your oven up to HIGH and get out a heavy baking dish. Pour a good slug of oil into the pan and rub it around with your fingers to coat the bottom. Dump your cooked potato pieces into the oiled pan and then squash them down with your hand, the back of a spoon or a potato masher – whatever is closest. The potatoes will flatten and break up. Great! Now drizzle more oil over them and sprinkle with salt and a bit of herb (fresh or dried rosemary or oregano is good) and chuck them in the hot oven. Turn after ten minutes and cook again for another ten. You’ll end up with nice hot crispy potatoes that are still fluffy and soft in the middle.

While the spuds are baking put some hot water into a saucepan and bring to the boil (only do this if you aren’t frying everything – but know that frying everything is an option…) and get your frypan on. Add a little fat/oil to the frypan and then add any meat you are going to cook up or reheat.

Chop up any vegetables you’ll boil. I often use broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, brussel sprouts, carrots, green beans or asparagus. If you already have these as cooked vegetables from a previous meal you can reheat in the frypan. Put the hard texture vegetables in first – eg carrots and brussel sprouts (chop these dudes into halves or even quarters to speed cooking time) to give them a head-start with cooking. Add the broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini next and things like asparagus and beans just a few minutes before the rest are done. Drain when cooked and dump back into saucepan with a lid to keep warm. (Hint – I will often put an egg or two in their shells in with the vegetables if I couldn’t be bothered doing a fry up. When the vegetables are done just use a spoon to halve the eggs and scoop contents out onto your bowl of food. Three to four minutes for a soft yolk, longer for a hard yolk.)

Fry-up – your sausages, bacon or cold leftover meat will be well on its way to cooked or hot. Now you can add tomato, onion, mushroom, an egg or whatever else takes your fancy – or any vegetables that are pre-cooked and which need reheating. Turn occasionally to prevent sticking and allow even cooking.

To assemble:

Place some potato in bottom of bowl. Add some cooked vegetables and whatever you’ve fried up. Dab that butter on if you’re a butter kind of person. (Hint – pre-slicing cooked sausages or other meat makes eating it a whole lot better!) Add any salad items or chopped fresh herbs to the top, and a spoonful or two of fermented vegetables like kimchi or sauerkraut. Salt and pepper if you want. Eat!

 

Stir Fried Sweet Potato, Mushroom and Broccoli Recipe

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“One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well.”  ~ Virginia Woolf

 

Food isn’t just food.  Food is also a healing tool.  A spiritual tool. A way to give love and care to self and others.

If you want to think about this recipe as just food then this is what you need to know:

This is a handy recipe – it works well for a vegan or vegetarian main course, or as a tasty side to accompany fish, chicken or meat.  It is equally good served cold as a salad, and is delicious when folded into the centre of an omelette.  The dish is also paleo compliant, as well as being dairy and gluten free.  Needless to say, I recommend you make up enough to enjoy some leftovers!

If you want to think of it as more than just food, this simple recipe provides instant grounding for those times when you feel frazzled, disconnected, stressed and not quite in your body. It works to soothe, nourish and centre your Solar Plexus, Heart and Crown Chakras. It’s anti-inflammatory, and nurturing for those of us with exhaustion issues and adrenal fatigue.

Ingredients for 2 as a main, or 4 as a side dish:

2 cups of sliced mushrooms, 2 cups of cubed golden sweet potato, 4 garlic cloves crushed or finely chopped, 1 tablespoon of coconut oil, 1 teaspoon of tumeric, 2 tablespoons wheat-free Tamari Sauce, 1 cup of water, 2 cups of broccoli florets, 1 sliced red capsicum (bell pepper), 1/2 cup of raw walnuts

*Note – leave the mushrooms in thicker slices or chunks for a more satisfying texture.

Method:

Place 1/4 of the water and the coconut oil in a large heavy-bottomed frypan or pot over medium heat.  Toss in your sliced mushrooms, stir well and leave to cook for a minute until they begin to soften slightly.  Then add your cubed sweet potato and another 1/4 cup of water. Stir to combine, lower heat and cook five minutes until sweet potato is becoming soft.

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Increase heat again, add in the garlic, tumeric and tamari and stir well.  Then dump in the broccoli and another 1/4 cup of water. Stir fry for one minute, and then add the sliced capsicum. Continue to cook over high heat, stirring frequently and adding the final 1/4 cup of water if required. Add the walnuts, stir through, and remove from heat.

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Your easy meal is now ready to enjoy, and is packed full of good things to help you nourish and heal yourself. The flavours are simple and clean, and the food is easy to digest. Great for those with chronic fatigue, and for anyone recovering from illness. It grounds us, energetically soothes us and helps us to sleep better.

But if you don’t tell people any of that, they’ll just eat it ‘cos it tastes good!

Cheesy Grilled Mushrooms Recipe

I love this recipe. You can make it in five minutes flat, and it works as a breakfast, lunch or dinner solution!  If you’re a vegan you can omit the cheese, or use a cheese substitute.

It’s also a great gluten and carb free alternative to pizza, but tastes every bit as good.

Ingredients:

  • Flat field mushrooms (I’m using Portobello mushrooms!)
  • Tomato paste, tinned diced tomatoes, salsa or similar
  • Garlic or garlic powder
  • Capsicum (bell pepper) diced small
  • Fresh herbs well chopped – parsley, oregano, chives, thyme and basil all work well.  Use dried if you don’t have any fresh herbs to hand.
  • Grilling cheese, such as mozzarella, cheddar or gruyere
  • Rocket or other slightly bitter green leaves for your salad
  • Balsamic vinegar

I haven’t given specific quantities because you’ll need to vary this depending on how many people you’re feeding, how big your mushrooms are and the size of your appetite.  As you can see from the picture below, my mushrooms are enormous so one will be plenty per person.

Method:

Pull the stalk out of the mushrooms by giving it a gentle twist with your fingers.  Trim up any loose bits to give you a reasonable area to stuff. There is no need to peel the mushrooms, but wipe them over with a damp cloth or paper towel if they need it.

Now spoon some tomato paste/diced tomato/salsa etc into the bottom of the mushroom cup and spread it around with a spoon. Add in some of the capsicum (bell pepper) and a generous sprinkle of fresh herbs. Crush on some fresh garlic or sprinkle on some garlic powder, then season with salt and pepper. Make as many as you need.

Place the mushrooms under a hot grill, or on a tray in a good hot oven.  Allow to heat for a few minutes to warm the mushrooms and filling through.

Now place some sliced cheese onto your warmed-through mushrooms.

Return to grill or oven until the cheese is melted and nicely browned.

Serve with a handful of rocket or other seasonal greens, drizzled with some balsamic vinegar. I find this is plenty as a meal on its own, but you can also use this as a tasty side dish. If bread is your thing, feel free to add some to your plate as well. Enjoy! ❤

Cheesy Mexican Bake with Home-made Coleslaw

All my clients and friends keep telling me they want to eat better but have no time to cook! In response to this I’ve decided to post some quick-to-prepare recipes that will allow you to eat well, and get food on the table fast, with a mimimum of fuss.

This recipe is embarrassingly easy and I have endless variations of it, but here goes:

Note: For vegans, use a butter and cheese substitute. This is a vegetarian meal, but carnivores could easily add in a few handfuls of bacon, ham, chicken or sausage. Like I said, endless variations…

Ingredients: potatoes – washed but skin on ( you could also use pumpkin or sweet potato if you choose), an onion, a couple of cloves of garlic, a few cups of mixed vegetables, some ripe tomatoes (or a can if you’re really pressed), and a tin of baked beans, some cheese, coriander (cilantro – or fresh herbs of your choice), cumin, black pepper, paprika (smoked is good!) and a little chilli.

Fresh tomatoes from my garden!

Method:

Heat oven to moderate, 180c, or 350f.

Find a big baking dish or pan to serve your meal in and grease well with butter. (I use an old enamel dish I found at an op shop many years ago. It’s still one of my faves and it cost $2!) Cook up enough potato cut in rough big chunks, unpeeled, to cover the bottom of pan with a hearty layer. (I often use pumpkin or sweet potato or a combo too.) While the spuds are cooking grease your serving pan and chop the rest of your vegetables, and then get started on your slaw. Ten minutes should be more than ample time!

When the potato is cooked dump into bottom of pan. Feel free to smash down a bit to get that coverage. Cover with a layer of baked beans. 1 tin ought to do it. Then add various chopped vegies – for ‘Mexican’ (this is hilarious considering I am an Australian…) I use chopped capsicum (bell peppers), raw onion, green onions (shallots) a few cloves of crushed garlic, fresh corn (you could used tinned), fresh coriander and then season with lots of cracked black pepper, cumin, paprika (smokey is good!) and a little chilli – or just use a mexican spice mix. Cover with a layer of sliced fresh tomatoes and then with grated cheese and place in hot oven for about 20 mins or until golden brown on top. Devour, with a garden salad or coleslaw. Easy and yum!

Variation: For something a little fancier slather some guacamole and sour cream on top, and add more fresh coriander (cilantro).

Coleslaw – finely slice or shred a quarter wedge of red cabbage and a white one, add some finely chopped celery, capsicum (bell pepper), onion and apple, grated carrot, and a little fresh corn if you have it. Add coleslaw dressing and mix well. (Confession – I will usually use store-bought dressing when I’m in a hurry) I often add walnuts or diced pineapple to my coleslaw too, depending on the day, and what I’m serving it with.

PS – You can cheat with the coleslaw if you need to by buying a bag of pre-chopped coleslaw vegetables from the supermarket, then adding a few of your own touches (like the onion and apple). That’s still going to be way better than the pre-bought tubs of mush that imitate the real thing.

Coles pre-made coleslaw vegetables – Image from coles.com.au

I often use whatever vegetables are in my cupboard/fridge or growing in the garden for my cheesy bakes. If I am feeling energetic I will cook beans from scratch, or use leftover chilli from a previous meal. It is a great dinner to reheat for lunch or supper the next day too 🙂

Tips: Cook double your usual quantity of potato at one night’s dinner, and make this recipe up to serve the following night.  Refrigerate and then bake when needed, but give yourself a good 30 minutes cooking time to make sure it is heated right through. Faster than take-away and a fraction of the price! Or make two trays and freeze one to serve on those nights when you are too tired to care.

And while you’re waiting for this to brown in the oven, and with the coleslaw all made, you’ll have time for a minute’s meditation….

Life’s too short to eat bad food! I hope you enjoy this easy meal xx