Tag Archives: carrots

“Healthy” Instant Fried Noodles

Healthy Mi Goreng fried noodles with egg

Verdict: These simple addition of veggies and protein to instant noodles makes it a meal so good, you’ll crave it, whether you are a penniless student or you are just looking for a quick, rounded meal.

Healthy instant noodles? It sounds impossible, given a package of noodles provides not much more than a bunch of empty carbs, and some fat. However, adding a dose of fresh vegetables and a protein source such as a fried egg will turn this empty junk food dish into something much more well rounded.

Mi Goreng fried noodles

If you haven’t eaten Mi Goreng’s instant fried noodles before, you are in for a treat! It’s a different kind of instant noodle, one that does not produce broth. Instead, it is coated in sweet soya sauce, chili oil and topped with fried onions. When you’re strapped for time and/or cash, this dish is a great alternative to fast food or take out. It’s quick, easy and there’s only a pot and a skillet to clean at the end.

The healthy part Large pieces of broccoli and large match stick sized carrots and red pepper.

My cousin introduced this to me a few years ago when we were recovering from hangovers. Instead of veggies, she added cooked chicken and a lot of hot sauce. The dried onions coated in the sweet and spicy sauce with the crispy fried onions won me over instantly; I’ve been hooked ever since. The craving was so deeply seated that, for a time, my mission was to introduce these instant noodle to as many people as possible.

Instant noodle tipTip: Use scissors to open up the sauce packages, otherwise, you’ll be fumbling to open them with greasy fingers.

Flash boiled carrots and broccoli

Times when Mi Goreng is most helpful:

  • quick dinner, minimal clean up
  • snack for a friend that’s dropping by to catch up
  • after the bar food (you don’t have to be functioning at full capacity to make it)
  • it’s cheap and doesn’t go bad, very good for students and those living away from home

Stir veggies into noodle

You can find Mi Goreng at Asian Supermarkets or the ethnic aisle of your grocery store. You will find the sweet soya sauce near by. We’ve tried three to four different brands and found the Lee Kum Kee Sweet Soy Sauce brand to be the best performer. It has a mellow kind of sweetness and the right consistency: thicker than regular soya sauce but not as thick as honey or molasses.

Instant fried noodles with a fried egg

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Japanese Curry

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Verdict: This dish brings the complexity of a curry to the comfort of a stew. A perfect addition to your winter cooking rotation.

Curries are a mainstay in our house because they are healthy, easy to make, and complex in flavours. Although there are a few recipes that don’t include vegetables, curry recipes tend to fit the bill in healthiness and striking deliciousness. Curries are also very easy to make but can require more time to cook (with the exception of Thai curry). The extra wait is worth it though – over time, the spices and broth break down and dramatically change the cheapest cuts of meat into the most tender and flavourful morsels.

Caramelized onions

A new curry recipe can mean a new world of unfathomable flavour combinations. Each country and region has a unique take on curry, and so, preparing a curry from Japan one night, and one from India the next feels like an entirely new cooking experience. Often with curry recipes, the first time I try a curry recipe is the first time I eat that kind of recipe, for example, this Japanese curry.

Carrot and chicken thighs

I was intrigued by the use of garam masala which is usually associated with Indian cooking. A typical Indian version of garam masala includes peppercorns, cloves, cumin, cardamon, star anise and coriander seeds. I find garam masala softer and more wholesome than regular curry powders; it’s the cloves that warm up the recipe. The lack of chili powder also makes it milder and more approachable to eat. If the spice and heat experience in eating curry is like riding a bike, garam masala based curries are the bikes with training wheels while vindaloos are the down hilll mountain variety – best saved for the veterans or the adventurous. You won’t have to stray too far from your grocery routine for this recipe. You can find the garam masala in the international Foods aisle of your super market; you can make homemade garam masala as well. Use whole spices and grind them up in the mortar and pestle or food processor.

Crumbly roux Japanese curry roux with broth - voluptuous

During the cooking process, the carrots sweeten slightly, complimenting the garam masala’s clove and cardomon notes. The tender pieces of chicken are also a delight. The caramelized onions, hearty potato, and carrot result in a dish that looks like a stew with the surprising taste of a softly seasoned curry. We served this with brown rice and it was perfect for the minus 40 winter day, like curling up on the couch with a warm blanket and great book.

Hearty Japanese curry

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