Food

3 Quick Fixes to Turn Your Day Around

Most of us lead hectic lifestyles that leave us with very little time for anything extra. But does that mean that you should compromise on the meals that you eat? Never. Ordering out every single day can not only be expensive, but also not very good for your health. So here are a couple of quick fix meals that you can whip up for the whole family in a matter of minutes!

Crunchy Pear Salad

This light, fresh and summery salad is a great way to get some nutrition into your system, the delicious way!

Ingredients
· 150 g watercress
· 1 bunch of lettuce
· 1 lemon
· 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
· sea salt
· freshly ground black pepper
· 1 firm pear
· A few walnuts
· 40 g blue cheese, such as Stilton or Cashel Blue

Directions:

· Pick your watercress and lettuce leaves and then add them to a large serving bowl.
· Cut the lemon into half and squeeze the juice into a jar. Be sure not to let any seeds get in.
· Drizzle in the extra virgin olive oil, followed by the salt and pepper to taste. Close the lid of the jar and it well to mix the dressing.
· Open the jar and taste the dressing. Add whatever ingredient you think s lacking.
· Put the lid securely on the jar and shake well.
· Slice the pear into rounds, and then slice it further into matchsticks.
· Add them to the bowl with the salad leaves and squeeze a little more lemon juice on it so that the pear doesn't turn brown.
· Crumble blue cheese into the bowl, add walnuts and drizzle the salad dressing on top.
· Toss the salad gently, until everything is coated well and then serve.

Chicken Sukka

This is a really simple dish to whip up in a matter of minutes and goes really well with rotis or plain steamed rice.

Ingredients:

· Chicken - 1/2 kg
· Onion - ½, diced into medium sized pieces
· Red Chilly powder - 1 tsp
· Black Pepper powder - 1 tsp
· Coriander powder - 2 tsp
· Turmeric powder - ¼ tsp
· Garam masala powder -¼ tsp
· Yogurt -2 tsp
· Ginger garlic paste -1 tsp
· Salt - to taste
· Oil - 2 tsp
· Coriander leaves - (to garnish)

Directions:

· Wash the chicken and cut into medium sized pieces.
· In a bowl, add coriander powder, pepper powder, chilly powder, turmeric powder, garam masala, salt, ginger garlic paste and yogurt to form a paste. To this, add the chicken pieces and mix well to coat all the pieces of chicken. Allow this to marinate in the refrigerator for at least an hour.
· Heat oil in a pan and add the marinated chicken pieces to it. Sautee until the chicken is browned and then cover and cook for about 10 minutes or until the chicken is cooked thoroughly.
· Uncover the lid and allow it to fry on medium heat for a couple of minutes or until the water is evaporated.
· Add the onions and fry for an additional 2 minutes.
· Garnish with split chillies, coriander leaves and tomato slices and serve hot.

Tomato Spaghetti With Grilled Tuna

This dish is perfect for a special occasion where you want to show off your culinary skills but don't have too much time on your hands.

Ingredients:

· 1 clove of garlic
· 200 g cherry tomatoes
· 30 g black olives
· 30 g green olives
· 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
· sea salt
· 30 g Parmesan cheese
· a small bunch of fresh basil
· olive oil
· 1 lemon
· 2 x 120 g tuna steaks
· freshly ground black pepper
· 150 g dried spaghetti
· extra virgin olive oil
· ½ fresh red chilli
· 35 g rocket

Directions

· Slice the garlic finely, cut the cherry tomatoes in half and tear the olives into bits. Grind the fennel seeds into a powder with a mortar and pestle.
· Grate the Parmesan cheese and pick the basil leaves from the stalks. Chop the stalks roughly and smash them to a paste with a pinch of salt in a mortar and pestle. Mix the juice of half a lemon, the grating of lemon zest and 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the basil paste. Add this dressing to the tuna steaks and mix well until the coating spreads everywhere. Refrigerate for 20 minutes to allow the marinade to take effect.
· Fill a pot with water, add a pinch of salt and allow it to come to a boil. When the bubbles start to show, drop the spaghetti into the water and cook until the pasta is cooked through. When it is done, scoop up half a mug of the pasta water before draining the pasta. Run cold water over the pasta to stop the cooking process.
· Place a pan over medium heat, add some olive oil and then the garlic and fry until golden. Add the fennel seed powder and cherry tomatoes, season with pepper, cover and cook on a low flame for about 5 minutes or until the tomatoes are soft and sweet. Turn the heat off and add the drained spaghetti into the pan and mix together. Season the spaghetti with salt, pepper and lime juice. Cover with a lid.
· Into a bowl, add olives, basil leaves, rocket, a squeeze of lime juice and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil. Chop the chilli until very fine and sprinkle over.
· Sprinkle some salt over the tuna steaks and add to a griddle pan over medium heat. Cook for about 1 minute on each side.
· Add the Parmesan to the spaghetti and add the reserved pasta water if required.
· Serve the spaghetti on to plates, top with the tuna steaks and a generous helping of olive salad on the side.


Photo by: Thinkstock Images
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