Back in June I put together a post with 5 of my favourite work day lunches- click if you missed it. Seems you liked my cauliflower fritter bowls and stuffed aubergines because it's one of my most heavily view food posts this year. So I'm back with three more lunch ideas- a bright and colourful pick me, a big bowl of comfort and one that's as good warm as it is cold in case you can't heat your lunch. Oh, and all three of these lunches have vegan bases, all meat, fish & animal products are optional extras.
1. The colourful pick-me-up... Asian Salad
I mentioned this Asian inspired salad in my recent post about building the perfect salad- again, click if you missed it... IT's bright and cheerful, slightly sour and fresh all at the same time. Basic recipe below- proteins & extras are your own choice, as you can see this one has prawns added as well as avocado & toasted seeds to get my fats in.
Shred vegetables- I used red cabbage, cucumber, radishes, carrot and half an apple. Use a grater or a spiraliser, I threw it into my Thermomix on speed 5 for 5 seconds.
Add the veg to a bowl and pour over a mixture of the following:
1 tbsp white wine or rice wine vinegar
Squeeze (teaspoon ish) honey
1/2 tsp tamarind paste
dash of soy sauce
dash of sesame oil
The volume of veg you shred will determine the number of servings but using a quarter of a cabbage, 1 carrot, half an apple, half a standard cucumber and a handful of radishes gave me 3 very large portions. Store in the fridge, but can be eaten at room temperature.
3. Comfort in a bowl... Thai Green curry & coconut daal
Daal topped with toasted seeds and prawns mixed through. Not forgetting a dash of sriracha
This is so not the most photogenic of dishes, but it's warm, comforting and the perfect antidote to a dark, wet & windy afternoon.
I recommend using a non-stick pan for this:
Heat 1/2 teaspoon of coconut oil or sesame oil
Add 2 tbsp of preferred green curry paste (red would also work if preferred)
Once bubbling, add 180g of red lentils, mix to coat the lentils
Add 1 400ml tin of coconut milk (if you're using low fat coconut milk, the next stage will be down to judgement on consistency)
Fill the empty tin with water, and as the daal starts to simmer, add the water bit by bit, stirring in between. I used about 3/4 of the water to get mine to the desired consistency with full fat coconut milk- the whole cook time is around 30 mins
Taste for seasoning- may benefit from a dash of salt or soy sauce.
To serve, mix spinach leave through before heating, I also like to add leftover roast chicken or prawns and top with toasted seeds for crunch. The above yields 3 substantial portions.
3. The one that's awesome hot or cold... Burrito Bowls
Very greedy but oh so good with chicken, feta, quinoa, avocado, salad & crispy onions
Burrito bowls have been done time and again, and there are some great recipes out there for different chilli style mixes to go with them- mine changes every time I make it...
For the mixed bean chilli:
To a slow cooker add:
1 tin mixed beans (often called mixed bean salad)
1 tin chopped tomatoes
1 small tin sweetcorn
generous dollop tomato puree
smoked paprika & cumin to taste- start with 1 tsp each
Splash or sriracha or chilli powder
3 cloves garlic crushed
Cook on low for 4-6 hours until the sauce has thickened.
To build your bowl:
Grains of choice- I had leftover quinoa, so that's mine
Avocado or guacamole
Cheese of choice- I like feta for sharpness
This was a greedy bowl so I added some left over roast chicken as well...
Squeeze of lime & even more greedy, crispy onions
Feeling the chill? Take your chilli & grains separately to your salad, and warm through gently first. If you're taking this to an office, a sectioned box or bento box is really useful for the different elements, otherwise consider having a few smaller storage tubs so you can build your bowl at the time of eating.