What happens when Plexa tries to make lunch?
I'm not much of a lunch person. I really really don't like sandwiches which makes lunches quite difficult. Typically much lunches consist of bits and pieces of food that I just happen to have available. For instance, I usually just eat a pie for lunch when I'm at uni since its relatively inexpensive and I usually skip lunch all together when I'm at home.
Actually, I'm not much of a breakfast person either (since I'm usually rushing out the door or simply sleeping through it). So occasionally I go days without eating anything for breakfast and lunch. Since I'm trying to get better (see my last blog for details), I figured its about time I reintroduced breakfast and lunch back into my regular diet.
Breakfast was easy to rectify -
This is what God's eat for breakfast
Lunch, however, is a lot more difficult =[
My gf is currently studying to become a food technologist. This mean that she develops products for mass production to fill gaps in the market. This include developing completely new ideas or simply taking something that exists already and cutting costs, making it healthier or adapting it to a new target market. It's actually quite an interesting thing to get involved in
This was her first project - developing healthier waffles
At the moment she is working on developing a sports drink to "fix" cramping. i.e. you cramp, you drink the drink, and the cramp is alleviated. She has a report due at the end of this week and thus has been working like crazy to finish it.
Last year, however, she developed sandwhich fillers - a product missing on the NZ shelves (but available in the UK). They were really quite awesome; she developed a bacon salsa sandwich filler which tasted phenomenal. So I annoyed her about it after my colonoscopy and she agreed to make it for me since I was sick (I usually do all the cooking).
She made it. It was incredible. And I finished it within 3 days ... Since I had ran out - I demanded that I get more! But she instead told me to make it myself since she was busy with her own work. So, with her assistance, Plexa begun the journey on recreating some sandwich fillers so he can stop skipping lunch!! I decided to make two - one tandoori chicken and one bacon salsa.
The journey begins
The Bacon Salsa Sandwich Filler
I can't remember the recipe exactly, but if anyone is interested I can nag my gf about it and get it off her. Here's a rough list of ingredients;
- Red Onion
- Olive Oil
- Corn Flour
So first things first. I needed to get the skin off of the tomatoes. The trick to doing thing, if you didn't already know, is to cut a cross at the bottom of the tomato then pour boiling water over the tomato. After a while the skin starts to shrivel and then you can remove the skin easily. Once the skin was off, the tomatoes needed to be de-seeded.
Plexa deseeding the tomatoes
Yup, so after a while all the tomatoes were seedless and skinless. Next I prepared some capsicum for dicing and cut the bacon into sizable bits. Bacon is awesome, so I added way more than my gf did last time ^^
Tomatoes, Capsicum and Bacon!!
Next on the list was actually dicing up the tomatoes and capsicum. Dicing the tomatoes was pretty annoying since its had to get a regular shape, and you also have to be careful not to squish them all up. However, the capsicum was easy to dice since they retain their shape hence I can show you a pretty picture of diced capsicum
Dicing the tomato
Once both were diced, I chucked them both in a bowl and mixed them up realllll good
Tomatoes and capsicum all nice and diced
Next on the agenda was the BACON. So I gathered up the chopped bacon and threw it in a pan and began cooking it. My gf smelt that bacon was cooking, and being the bacon lover that she is, came over and took over the bacon station T_T
Neala cooking bacon
With her cooking the bacon, I now had to face the greatest enemy of any chef. Well, second greatest enemy - ONIONS (chilli is worse to prepare )
I charged in, head first - dicing as systematically and as quickly as I could. It wasn't long before my eyes started getting destroyed by the onion. But I pressed on, and in the end that motherfucker got what was coming to him.
The supermarket we went to earlier didn't have coriander so instead I turned to butchering my Italian Parsley plant to replace it. What makes it different form normal parsley? I have no idea. But now my plant has a brand new hairstyle haha. Anyway, I diced that shit up as well then added both the onion and parsley to the bowl with the tomato and capsicum in it. The bacon was set aside on a plate with a paper towel to soak the oil up.
This is me just starting to cut up the parsley
Everything gets mixed up!
Next I needed to add the oil and the vinegar. I have no idea what the correct amount I needed to add was, but I'm pretty sure I got it wrong. Regardless, I added it to the bowl and gave it another good mix.
Oil and Vinegar were next
Next I mixed about 3 tsp of corn flour with 3 tsp of water to dissolve it and set it aside. I then added everything in the bowl to a saucepan and brought it to the boil. I kinda left it too long and it melted the tomatoes T_T, but nevertheless it boiled! Once it was boiling I added not the corn flour solution and bacon to the mixture
The bacon goes in!
After returning the mixture to the boil I transferred it out of the saucepan and into a bowl to cool down. The bacon salsa sandwhich filler was complete!!
The sandwich filler is completed!! Loving the clean stove top btw
Tandoori Chicken Sandwhich Filler
This was an alternate sandwich filler created for Neala's project last year. It wasn't as good since she couldn't figure out how to get the taste right - but the original version using "Chicken Tonight" was pretty decent, so I decided to go with that.
Firstly, 500g of Chicken breast needed to be poached. So once the water was brought to the boil, I threw the chicken into the pot and 30mins later it was cooked! I replaced the boiling water with cold water so the Chicken could cool down so I could proceed to the next step.
This is what poached chicken looks like
The next step was incredibly painful. I had to shred the chicken. I don't know any tricks to shredding, so I did it all by hand... and that was a complete disaster. It took about 40-50 minutes to shred the chicken =[ what a waste of time.
Shredded chicken - almost an hours work right here
And now for the easy part haha. Next I got my jar of Chicken Tonight and opened it up. Added some yogurt and mint to it for flavor and spice control and then threw it into the pan to heat it through.
I feel like Chicken Tonight
Heating the mixture through
And viola! Tandoori Chicken Sandwich Filler complete!!
And thus, I now have enough good food for lunch for the next week!! (hopefully).
The stuff I made is no where near as good as the stuff Neala made for me. Mostly because I had the wrong herb and completely destroyed my tomatoes =[ Nevertheless, the result is edible and is still really tasty.
I learned my lesson though. Elves have no place trying to cook lunch - I'll leave that to the mrs.
The finished product - yum yum!!
The left is the bacon salsa, the right is the tandoori chicken