I could write all about how essays are looming like storm clouds on the edge of the horizon – but I don’t want to be pessimistic. Instead, I’ve decided to write a bit about good and healthy food to help you remain at the top of your game during the semester. (Okay, maybe I am procrastinating a little).
Unfortunately I don’t have the time in my student schedule to make up fancy dishes. But I don’t want to go to the other extreme and just eat steamed vegetable leftovers and noodles every day – I’ve learnt from that experience and it’s not fun!
When studying, it is important not just to do well, you need to keep yourself healthy as well. Because being healthy can affect and impact on your overall well-being and how well you are coping with stresses, such as being able to balance a cold with essays looming.
It’s very easy to get swamped with a jam-packed study schedule and find yourself swapping healthy meals for something a little more convenient. Say, some chips or takeaway?
Thus, I have compiled a few recipes for when you need a good feed or a quick ‘pick me up’, whilst being moderately cheap. Which is important when you’re trying to stay healthy whilst saving for the next lot of holidays!
This dish was inspired by a trip down to Rosa Mexicano in St Lucia. It’s a lovely restaurant, very relaxed and casual, and cheap!
The leftover lunch
- salad stuff – tomatoes, lettuce, asparagus, onion, pumpkin etc
- meat: chicken breast/beef OR vegetarian/vegan alternative
- organic sweet soy sauce
- dark soy sauce
- honey (½-1tbsp)
- Create your salad. However you would like.
- Cook rice in the microwave. Don’t know how? Taste has a great how to article.
I prefer brown rice and like to soak it overnight first to get rid of the phytic acid.
- Once the rice is cooked, sprinkle either some turmeric or cumin over the rice and mix.
- In a separate pan, cook the meat. Turn down the heat and wait until the pan is slightly cool (yet still slightly warm so you don’t burn the sauces) and mix the soy sauce and honey to marinade the meat.
For a vegetarian version, you can do this with tofu or even egg!
- Serve and enjoy!
There are heaps of microwaves on campus to reheat food. This is excellent when you are studying all day and trying to save money by eating leftovers!
The triple hot chocolate
I don’t drink coffee but I do love my chocolate! The next recipe is sure to impress and be comforting in the slightly cooler days ahead… Unless you are allergic. An old classmate of mine was…Weird, huh?
Anyway, this recipe comes with a warning – it’s very sugary, so enjoy in moderation!
- 1-2 tsp The finest pure cacao, preferably Swiss
- 2-3 tbsp of Milo
- pinch of brown sugar
- 1½-2 cups of milk
- ½ of bar of dark chocolate, I use Plaistowe (approx 150grams)
- a small drop of Cointreau
- some white chocolate
- whipped cream
- pinch of cinnamon and nutmeg
- First melt the dark chocolate in a saucepan, with a little water, on a very low heat. Be careful not to let it burn!
I can’t be bothered with a bain marie and I know all you foodies would be screaming at me for that!
- Next, add the Cointreau. This is optional. The alcohol will burn off, leaving the taste only.
- Add in cacao, Milo and brown sugar.
- Make sure all the sugar has dissolved; stirring constantly with a wooden spoon.
- Swirl in the white chocolate (optional).
- Warm milk by adding it to the saucepan. Continue stirring.
- Pour into a nice fine china cup. Add in marshmallows, spices and whipped cream.
- The next step is very important. Turn off the stove!
- The moment has now arrived. Breathe in that chocolate-ness and enjoy!
The last recipe is for a smoothie. You will need a blender and a sieve.
I chose this recipe as winter time is coming up, and being stressed can weaken your immune system – so you need to eat foods high in antioxidants and vitamins! It is also something that will help with the mindless unhealthy snacking that comes with those essay deadlines! Either way, a smoothie is a great way to increase your daily fruit and vegetable servings intake. I usually take a smoothie to uni with me.
I prefer using organic foods when possible, especially in regards to the lettuce and berries.
I normally use:
- 3-4 lettuce leaves, preferably Cos
- 1 tbsp of Spirulina/or some green supplements (You can find these in the health food section of Coles or Woolies)
- ¼ lemon
- ¼ zucchini
- ½ banana
- 1½ cups mixed berries, fresh or frozen
- 1-2 cups coconut water/plain water
- ½ beetroot (optional if you want a ‘earthy taste’)
- ⅓ of a carrot
- chia seeds (optional)
- Remove lemon rind, as it may taste bitter when blended.
- Cut up the lemon, beetroot and carrot. Blend with some coconut water. Make sure the beetroot has blended properly, and if you still aren’t successful, put it through a sieve. You can then either discard the pulp or use it on your garden as fertiliser…
- Cut up the rest of the ingredients into small pieces and add to the blender, a little at a time. This will take some time but if you don’t, it may clog up the blender!
- I then add in the Spirulina and blend. Sprinkle with chia seeds.
- Pour the smoothie into a reusable drink bottle. Something that you can take on the go and won’t leak.
I prefer something that’s BPA and bisphenol free.
- Voila! It’s ready to go!
Well, these are the recipes. I hope this is helps you with ideas for quick food or drink when you are busy with study and student life. If you have any recipes to share, please do!
With Easter just having passed, and flu season coming up, remember to stay healthy when persisting with your studies and upcoming exams. It will pay off and the holidays will be here before you know it! I know I am looking forward to a break!
Till next time,