Back to college: Eating on a budget
Donal Skehan's student-friendly recipes
Donal Skehan has suggested two simple recipes that combine a few affordable ingredients for a tasty meal. Happy cooking!
Thai Red Fish Curry
I love the zingy flavours of this curry. Fish such as haddock and whiting are affordable and can all be used here, so try them instead of cod – just ask your fishmonger to remove the skin and bones. You could also quite easily use chicken instead of fish, though bear in mind that it would require a longer cooking time. I have suggested adding sugar snap peas and baby corn but you could add sliced peppers, sweet potato or peas, if you wish.
250g (9oz) basmati rice, well rinsed
1 tbsp rapeseed oil
2 shallots, peeled and finely sliced
3 tbsp Thai red curry paste
400ml (14fl oz) coconut milk
200ml (7fl oz) vegetable stock
Juice of 2 limes
1 tbsp Thai fish sauce (Nam Pla)
1 tsp brown sugar 150g (5oz) sugar snap peas
100g baby corn, sliced lengthways
3-4 fish fillets (600g/1lb 5oz in total), cut into 2.5cm (1in) cubes
Good handful of basil and coriander leaves.
Pour the rice into a cup, check the level it comes to, then pour into a cooking pot. Use the same cup to measure out twice the amount of water and pour this over the rice. Place over a medium-high heat with the lid on for about 15 minutes until all the water has been absorbed and the rice is cooked through. Take off the heat, fluff up with a fork and place the lid back on until you are ready to serve.
While the rice is cooking, heat the oil in a separate cooking pot over a medium-high heat and add the shallots. Fry for three-four minutes until softened. Add the red curry paste and fry for a further minute or so, stirring to coat the shallots.
Pour in the coconut milk and vegetable stock and bring to a steady boil, simmering for eight-10 minutes. Add the lime juice, fish sauce and brown sugar. Stir in the sugar snap peas and baby corn and simmer for three minutes.
Add in the fish pieces and simmer for three-five minutes until just cooked. Stir through some of the basil and coriander leaves before serving the curry in bowls over rice. Garnish with the last few basil and coriander leaves.
Zingy Quick and Tasty Stir-Fry
Stir-fries are a brilliant way of getting lots of veggies into your diet without compromising on taste.This one is full of zingy flavours and healthy, tasty veg. Don't be put off by Chinese cabbage – it's a great standby vegetable that will last quite a while in the fridge and works well in stir-fries such as this one or eaten raw in a crunchy Asian salad.
250g noodles of your choice
2 tbsps soy sauce
1 tsp honey
Juice of 1 lime
1 red pepper, thinly sliced
2 carrots, grated or sliced in thin matchsticks
Head Chinese cabbage, roughly shredded
1 red onion, sliced into thin half moons
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 red chilli, finely chopped.
Cook the noodles according to the instructions on the packet, drain and set aside.
Whisk together the soy sauce, honey and lime juice in the bottom of a large bowl. Add in the chopped veggies, except for the onion, garlic and chillies, and toss until everything is combined. Heat the oil in a wok or large frying pan until it's very hot, add the onion, chilli and garlic and stir-fry for about 40 seconds.
Add in the veggies and stir fry until they are tender. You can check this by taking a bite. Then add the noodles and toss in with all the veggies until combined, then fry for a further minute.