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Quick Meal Ideas You Can Never Go Wrong With

BY SOMREETA MUKHERJEE

Cooking, when done once in a while with a temperament to experiment with recipes and add a bit of innovation to the most commonplace items, is a hobby. But when you have to cook on a regular basis, three-four times a day, every day to feed your family, it is drudgery. There are days when you don’t feel like going to the kitchen but at the same time, you are not in a mood to order restaurant food as well. What are the meals that you can cook with less hassle involved and yet will make your family members eat to their heart’s content? What are the meals that you can never go wrong with? Check them out!

 

CHICKEN PASTA WITH VEGETABLES

Cooking homemade pasta is pretty easy. Add chunks of garlic and onions to cooking oil (olive oil preferred) and add sliced vegetables (of your choice) like capsicum and carrots. After 5 minutes, add some tomato and chilli sauce. Cook for some time, add chunks of boiled chicken and pour the chicken stock too into the wok. Add salt, a bit of sugar (optional), black pepper powder and dried herbs (like oregano if you have them readily available at home). Let it cook on medium to high flame for around 10 minutes. Let it simmer and texture becomes thick. Add boiled pasta to the gravy. Serve it hot! I have shared a simple and basic homemade pasta recipe that’s absolutely hassle-free. I am sure you have other ways of cooking a bowl of delicious pasta with little hassle involved. Just go ahead with it! The boiling of pasta, the boiling of chicken (in pressure cooker), cutting the vegetables and cooking the dish- all together it should not take more than 30 to 40 minutes.

 

CHICKEN HAKKA NOODLES

What can be better than a bowl of yummy noodles with lots of vegetables and chunks of chicken added to it? Stir fry shredded garlic with diced onions, capsicum, carrots and beans. Add strips of boiled chicken. Add salt, black pepper powder, chilli flakes and some sauce (optional, like tomato sauce, soya sauce, chilli sauce, schezwan sauce). Add boiled noodles in batches and stir fry while focussing on mixing the components well. Gobble it up! Want to add a dose of protein? Make some egg bhurji and have it together. The entire process, again, shouldn’t take more than 30 minutes.

 

DALIYA KHICHDI

If you want to keep your food simple, vegetarian, healthy and Indian in essence (instead of borrowing ideas from Italian or Chinese cuisine), make Daliya Khichdi. Just pour some cooking oil (you may mix cooking oil and ghee together) to the pressure cooker, add cumin seeds and a dash of hing. Once the cumin seeds start spluttering, fry some shredded ginger and green chillies. Then add daliya and dal of your choice (moong/masoor/combination of moong and masoor) in equal proportion. Add some salt and sugar. Pour in the required amount of water and pressure cook. Sorted! It should be done in 20 to 30 minutes. Don’t forget to add a spoon of ghee while serving a bowl of hearty Daliya Khichdi. It is best eaten with some papad.

 

What’s your comfort food on days when you feel too lazy to cook? Do share your recipes with us!

 

 

P.S.- The recipes given in the post are basic, homemade recipes. In fact, the ingredients are not even accompanied by their tsp/tbsp or gram/kilogram measure notes. If you want authentic recipes with proper food nomenclature, you may kindly look up for the same by food experts and well-known chefs. These recipes are the ones that you often call ‘ma-ke-haath-ka-khana‘- cooked fast and served with lots of love. Please note that the post is more about the meal ideas, less about the recipes.

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