Ah, isolation. During the beginning of my quarantine days, my life at home consisted of Netflix, Animal Crossing, and ordering takeout. Nowadays, it’s Netflix, Animal Crossing, and easy recipes that feeds the body as well as the soul. Bonus? I can usually whip them up in no time.
Due to staying at home for a long period of time, I find myself slipping into a funk from time to time these days. That is also why I try to snap myself out of it by making food for myself, especially dishes that are both delicious, nostalgic, and comforting. I haven’t transitioned out of my comfy work pyjamas just yet, but there is something about making the effort to feed yourself properly that just makes me feel like I have at least accomplished something for the day. Even though the whole process takes me 10 minutes. That is what today’s blog post is all about: comfort-for-the-soul-food.
Effort level? Low.
Yummy level? Very high.
Here are 5 easy recipes that you can make for yourself at home.
Classic Egg Tuna Sandwich
Starting this list with a classic and one of my favourite go-to lunch that I can whip up under 5 minutes. I used to hate eating tuna. As a girl who grew up in a tropical country where fresh fish is on the menu all year round, fish in a can sounds quite iffy. That’s why this classic is perfect for me.
Add in some soft boiled eggs, crack some white or black pepper (I mix both!), squeeze in some mayo, and spread it between hot golden toasts, and you’ve got yourself a very yummy and protein-rich lunch or snack. You can even amp this up by adding some mozzarella and/or cheddar and grill it on a pan, and you have yourself a classic tuna melt! If you’re not a fan of tuna in a can like me, give this a try.
Looking for fun ideas on productive things to do at home? Give these a try
Creamy Pasta Carbonara
A favourite from my university days that I’m still loving till this day. On the list of easy recipes, a pasta dish is usually always present. Generally, I prefer cream-based to tomato-based pasta and carbonara is my absolute favourite comfort meal. There is nothing more comforting than creamy pasta and grated parmesan with hints of grilled garlic and chopped fresh parsley.
I usually make mine without eggs and bacon/pancetta, but from time to time, I do love topping my creamy carbonara with crispy bacon flakes. This easy recipe is super affordable as it requires very few ingredients and it’s also a great dish to make whether you’re having a night in by yourself or some friends over. When the weather is warmer, I love topping it with a quick squeeze of fresh lemon as well.
Japanese Curry Rice
I’m not ashamed to say I’ve been eating this for breakfast and lunch for 3 days straight this week—it’s just so good!
As a Malaysian, I have a deep love for all curries and Japanese curry is no different. It’s slightly more mellowed and sweet compared to Malaysian curries, but the Japanese version is no less delicious. Normally I wouldn’t add curries on the list of easy recipes you can make, but this Japanese curry dish is definitely achievable within 10 minutes.
You can get the curry cubes (not the instant packets!) from the Japanese aisle at supermarkets and as for the vegetables, you can add whatever you like, but I personally love courgettes and carrots. I usually cook the vegetables in water for a really long time so they will melt along with the curry.
Chicken katsu and shredded red and white cabbage is amazing with Japanese curry, but if you’re looking for an easy recipe, eat it with soft-boiled eggs and it’s equally delicious. Top all of this with some steaming white rice and you’re all set for this easy recipe!
Pajeon (Korean Savoury Pancake)
Can you believe I made this one night because I wanted to clear out the vegetables in my fridge? Did I doubt this recipe in the beginning? Yes. But did it turn out to be an absolute star of my dinner that night? Yes. And did I add it into my forever easy recipes list? Absolutely.
My mother actually makes a variation of this with shrimp and growing up, it was one of my childhood favourites and I still crave it often nowadays. You can make yours with just vegetables and it’s equally delicious. I prefer using crunchy vegetables such as carrots, cabbage, spring onions, peppers, and courgettes. Sometimes I love adding shredded potatoes as well. This crunchy goodness is a great way to incorporate more vegetables into your daily diet and if you make them thin enough, they actually taste like vegetable chips! Dip it in some sauce made of soya sauce, minced garlic, chopped chilli, black vinegar and spring onions, and this crispy pancake is complete!
Egg Fried Rice
Egg fried rice is an all-time favourite comfort food of mine because I love just how versatile this dish is! There are endless possibilities as to what we can add to this humble dish.
Add some fresh seafood into it if you fancy seafood fried rice, or add some pineapple chunks and chicken, then a squeeze of fresh lime for a tropical twist. There are so many ways you can customise this dish and it’s really wholesome and hearty.
To keep it simple, I usually just fry up some garlic, shallots, onions, chilli, dried shrimp and eggs. Then I add in the day-old rice, stir fry it all together, top everything off with some freshly chopped spring onions and voila! All this under 5 minutes and not only do I get to use up the old rice in the fridge, I can make a huge batch and keep it for the next few days.