Saturday, May 9, 2015

Kitchen Time


I stink at multi-tasking.
I'm so hooked up sewing lately to only realize my last cooking post was 8 months ago (?!), unless my archives are not being truthful...

Cooking,  has been an inevitable part of everyday life. One of my aunts volunteerily cooks dinner for four people every evening, that's herself and husband, their son and daughter-in-law. And with a typical Chinese meal, it involves a lot more than Western dishes. On an average day, she allows herself two hours for dinner service. This is everyday, excluding washing up time. I certainly don't have that kind of stamina when it comes to cooking. Our daily meals are quite simple which consist of one starch, one veg and one protein. No more no less. And even with that kind of simplicity, I often call for extra time.

I often bypass that "bulk/great value" section at the supermarket. We are a small family. How much food can we possibly consume without going to waste? Buying more echos wasting more. I had plenty experience telling me rather buy less and more often. Until last week, something clicked. While M was out of town for a few days,  a grand cooking plan was born. I did a mega shopping and spent two mornings in the kitchen. I was determined to freeze everything so we should have our meals covered for at least a week or two.

This is what happened:
I also cooked some veggies too as fridge staples. Two things I have to mention, one being this finger licking good broccoli that I ended up snacking on; and the other Chinese style aubergine.

To prepare the aubergine dish you need:

4 T peanut oil, or whatever vegetable oil you have
1 large aubergine (or extra large), cut into big chunks
2 garlic cloves
1/2 teaspoon chili flakes
3 tablespoons soy sauce
3 teaspoons sugar

Heat the oil in a big wok and fry the garlic until fragrant. Throw in the aubergine pieces and quickly stir fry them so each piece gets coated with a little oil. When it looks it's almost getting dry, splash the soy sauce and sugar. Carry on stirring and coating. The soy sauce should be enough to keep the pieces moist. However it looks dry to you and to prevent burning, add tiny amount of water, which is going to be evaporated later anyway. Serve with rice.

I feel great about having food ready in the fridge and freezer. The cooking marathon is a commitment but it's worth it if the meals can stretch to two weeks, with some quick fix pan fry meals in between. Plus buying bulk means saving money in the long run. Win win! 

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