With the nationwide lockdown changing life as we know it, people up and down the country have had to be thriftier than usual, especially when it comes to the food we eat at home.
Finding everything you need on your shopping list – particularly cupboard and long life ingredients – has never been so difficult with panic buyers causing mayhem for all.
Meal plan rejigs have become the new normal as a result. But a pared back supply of store cupboard ingredients shouldn’t mean tasteless, uninventive dishes.
You can enjoy meals that are delicious and healthy using just five cupboard ingredients or less. Let us show you how.
The refreshing spring salad
Nothing beats a refreshing salad at this time of year, and spring and summer inspired salads don’t get any better than this. This easy to make and tasty Mediterranean tuna salad uses a simple mixture of cupboard and fridge ingredients to create a nutritious gluten-free, grain-free, paleo friendly and high-protein dish.
- 2 tins of tuna – well drained
- ½ cup artichoke hearts – chopped and marinated
- ½ cup sundried tomatoes – chopped
- ½ cup celery – finely chopped
- 1 shallot – peeled and minced
- 2 tbsp fresh, minced basil or ½ tbsp dried basil
- 1 tbsp lemon zest
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1 clove of roasted garlic or ½ tsp granulated garlic
- ¼ cup olive oil
- Salt and pepper – to taste
- Add the tins of tuna to a large mixing bowl and separate flakes into bite-sized chunks. Add the artichoke hearts, celery, and shallots, and toss the entire mixture.
- Next, add the sundried tomatoes. If your tomatoes are on the dry side, soak them in hot water to hydrate before chopping and adding to the mix.
- Season the salad with basil, lemon juice and zest, red pepper flakes, garlic, salt and pepper, and toss to combine.
- Finish by stirring in the olive oil and serve right away. As well as creating a delicious salad to enjoy immediately, leftovers can be refrigerated for up to five days in an airtight container.
The lockdown leftovers frittata
Making use of leftovers has never been so important, so put them to great use with our lockdown leftovers frittata. The humble frittata is just one of the many different ways to cook with eggs – and it’s extremely tasty too. The perfect option for a belly busting brunch, lunch or light dinner, this frittata is flavoursome, versatile and lockdown friendly.
- 6 eggs – large
- 170g leftover roasted vegetables – chopped
- ½ cup leftover grains – cooked
- 30g cheese – of your choice either grated
- 1 tbsp thyme, basil or chives – finely chopped
- Salt and pepper – to taste
- 2 tbsp olive oil – extra virgin
- Whisk all six eggs in a large bowl until smooth and streak-free. Stir in the grains, cheese, herbs, and leftover roasted vegetables, and season with salt and pepper.
- Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add the egg mixture and cook until the edges are set. This should take around 30 seconds.
- Use a spatula to stir the mixture, bringing the cooked edges into the centre of the pan. Cook for a further minute until the edges are set once more.
- Reduce the heat to low, and lift the cooked edges, allowing the uncooked egg to flow to the bottom of the pan. Cook for five more minutes.
- Place a large plate on top of the frying pan and flip the frittata onto the plate. Add the remaining olive oil to the pan and slide the frittata back in underside down to cook all the way through. This should take no more than three minutes.
- Remove the frittata from the pan and let it cool for five minutes before serving. Eat leftovers within 24 hours; simply cover and store in the fridge, bringing it to room temperature again before serving for the second time.
The staple pasta dish
If you’ve been lucky enough to get hold of some pasta on your recent trip to the supermarket, make the most of it with this fabulous recipe. This creamy pesto and kale pasta dish is nutritious and delicious and uses just a handful of fresh and store cupboard ingredients.
- 1 tbsp rapeseed oil
- 2 red onions – thinly sliced
- 300g kale – chopped
- 300g pasta – wholemeal, preferably penne or mafalda
- 4 tbsp reduced fat cream cheese
- 4 tbsp fresh pesto or a veggie alternative
- Fry the onions in a large pan at medium heat. Once softened and slightly caramelised, add the kale along with 100ml of water. Cover and cook for five minutes.
- Cook the pasta in accordance with the instructions on the pack. Drain, saving some of the drained water for later.
- Stir the pasta into the onion and kale mixture, before adding the cream cheese and pesto. Add the drained pasta water you set aside earlier to loosen the mixture, then season and serve!
Discovered any thrifty, healthy and delicious meal ideas of your own during lockdown? Share them with me and your fellow Goodness followers by posting them to Facebook or Instagram. Don’t forget to tag me in @webofgoodness.
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