Midweek it’s justified to be lazy.
Especially after a long day at work. The last thing you want to do is spend an hour or so slaving away in the kitchen, chopping, prepping and monitoring something as it cooks. I mean, you just want to get in your pyjamas and snuggle up on the sofa Right? I know I do.
Therefore anything that gives you a shortcut to getting a job done has to be tried. And when you can still make tasty, homemade meals from scratch, with some of the time taken for prep shaved off, it’s totally worth it. Who doesn’t like a reasonably healthy, comforting, homemade meal which hasn’t taken hours to make?
I recently got sent a selection of products from Very Lazy Foods – the food brand which peels, chops, slices and dices the very best ingredients, then captures them in all their tasty glory, in handy jars or tubes, to try. The name pretty much summing up my state of mind after work this week, I couldn’t wait to try them out.
The pastes (lemongrass, garlic, chilli and ginger) were super handy. Especially when adding extra flavour to quick dishes, which wouldn’t have had the time to fully absorb the aromas of chopped varieties.
I made a delicious tuna fried rice, with broccoli, fennel and red pepper. The squeezy lemongrass and garlic were great in adding extra oomf throughout, without there being lumps of the stuff in a random mouthful here and there.
I always find that pastes spread the flavour more evenly throughout a dish too.
The jars of chopped spices went down well too. They were great for dishes richer in flavour, and those which had extra time to simmer and bubble away, allowing for the flavours to infuse the whole recipe.
I don’t know about you, but I hate chopping garlic and chilli. The aromas stick around on your hands for what feels like forever, no matter how much you wash your hands. Let’s not even get me started on if you touch your eye after chopping chillis. Even after handwashing AND a shower, it still burns and waters. So the jars of chopped spices are not only great for time saving, but cutting out these little annoyances from midweek evenings too. Anything for a peaceful relaxing eve.
I’m yet to try them within a recipe with a more delicate flavour, but as these are sat in a vinaigrette I’d probably wash the garlic or ginger in a sieve first so it didn’t spoil the flavour.
I made one fab quick and easy Teryaki Chicken. I served it with noodles, broccoli and carrots sticks, and it was SO tasty. The chopped garlic, ginger and chilli coming into use here. It was so good in fact, that I was excited to be having leftovers for lunch for the two days after. So I thought I just had to share the recipe – scroll down to the end.
- Quality – fab! Potent in flavour and as it’s in vinaigrette it lasts.
- Ease of use – super simple. No chopping or perfecting needed. Simply add to a dish
- Best use – in anything which needs extra flavour. The chicken Teryaki below is a winner (I suggested making it with aubergine to my veggie friends).
- Would I recommend trying? – most definitely! Anything which saves time is always worth trying.
If you want something new to try, especially with Chinese New year on the horizon, give my Teryaki recipe a go.
Are you making anything for Chinese New year this year?
Very Lazy Chicken Teryaki
A slight twist on a traditional dish, with nuts instead of sesame seeds to finish too. It's a simple and pretty speedy mid-week dinner idea.
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 700 g chicken breast diced
- 85 ml Teriyaki Sauce
- 125 ml soy sauce
- 3 tbsp honey
- 2 tsp chopped ginger
- 1 1/2 tsp chopped garlic
- 1 tsp chopped chilli
- 2 carrot large
- 150 g broccoli
- 80 g salted peanuts crushed
- 2 fresh chilli sliced
- 4 noodle nest
Heat the oil in the large frying pan. Reduce to a medium heat and add the chicken. Cover with a lid and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. It should looked cooked through and be just starting to brown.
Whilst the chicken is cooking, cut the carrot into thin sticks and the broccoli into small florets. Leave to the side. Bring two small saucepans of water to boil, ready to add the vegetables and noodles when the chicken is nearly done.
In a glass combine the Teriyaki sauce, soy sauce, honey, ginger, garlic and chilli. Add to the frying pan, toss the chicken in it to evenly coat and return to the heat for a further 10 minutes, allowing the sauce to thicken. You might wish to turn the heat up slightly here to help the sauce along it's way.
Add the carrots and broccoli to one of the saucepans of boiling water and cook for 5 minutes - it needs to be just a la dente.
Add the noodles to the second saucepan and cook for 3-4 minutes.
Serve the noodles between four bowls, add the carrots and broccoli on one side, and the chicken. Top with crushed peanuts and fresh chilli. Enjoy.
*I was sent a selection of Very Lazy Foods products to review. All views my own.