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This week's seasonal recommendation

 

What to cook this week?

Sat, 2 May, 2020

Another week ahead and seven more dinners, lunches, snacks and breakfasts. You’re probably getting weary, the novelty of having lots of time for cooking has worn out and now it’s just a chore – no respite in going out because there’s no going out. I know I am, even though I do it as always, not that much has changed for me but I am getting slightly fed up and out of inspo. It’s the lack of control – all very well when I do it because that’s my chosen occupation and lifestyle but if other options suddenly are null, I revolt.

We’ll keep on anyway because we don’t give up so easily and it’s not only about us but the loved ones we want to feed. But let’s go easy this week and cook mainly stir fries. We certainly can do worse than that.

The great thing about stir fries is also how adaptable they are. As long as you have a decent cupboard of soy sauce, chilli paste, rice wine and fish sauce, the other elements can be swapped ad lib. I’ve discovered for instance that tinned or jarred beansprouts work as well as fresh; spring onions are irrelevant and you can buy an assortment of frozen spices and herbs. You can stir fry any veg you have as long as they are chopped small or julienned: carrots, mushrooms, peppers, (any) cabbage, (any) beans, aubergines, courgettes, broccoli including stalks, cauliflower including stalks, (frozen) broad beans and (frozen) sweetcorn.

So now you can play with chicken, duck, prawns, pork fillet, beef, bacon (be adventurous), fish or squid. And there are specific recipes below if you need instructions.

Meat free – no problem: sesame or Thai cinnamon noodles? Vegetable fried rice? Yu xiang aubergine? Remember – swap what you have for what you haven’t.

And then at the end of another week – or even at the beginning of it, or both – there must be cake, an easy one as well. Simple lemon drizzle pound cake, orange walnut loaf or maybe a tray of financiers if you have egg whites in the freezer? Or just bake a double batch of chocolate rye cookies which are quite simply amazing. Stay safe!

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