Category Archives: Lazy Student Recipes

Getting older, getting excited about pizza

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Ask any of my friends, I have been craving pizza for a week. Every day, I tried to convince someone to grab a slice with me, but for xyz reason, it never happened. It’s kind of a blessing, because when the weekend came around, I knew what to do. I went to the grocery store to get a ball of frozen pizza dough from the bakery. It’s the kind of detail that makes home cooking convenient enough to be worthwhile, so I have no shame in buying the raw dough versus making my own, since I know I will never get around to the latter.

After shaping the dough, I smoothed on leftover pasta sauce, added some spices and ground pepper, layered veggies (mushrooms, zucchini and bell peppers) and topped it off with a combination of mozzarella and feta cheeses. I baked it at 350 for about 20 minutes.

There are infinite topping possibilities. I particularly like olives, pesto, prosciutto, caramelized onions, artichokes, but I rarely have these items on hand. Bonus: it’s the kind of meal that cleans out your fridge. Random leftovers? Throw them on a pizza.

20121028-012502.jpgToday, while studying with a friend, I got into a discussion about getting older. We now get really excited about making good food. I feel particularly crappy because a big part of what I blog about is delicious food. Binge drinking and late-night pizza has kind of lost its appeal. We now sip on a glass or two of wine while our delicious dinner is in the oven….and are in bed by 9!

Okay the last part is a joke, but I do feel old today. I guess it only gets worse from here.

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Berry Flan

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This is the laziest of desserts for the lazy, I mean efficient, cook. And it’s healthy enough for me to justify eating it for breakfast. And it tastes a lot like flan you’d buy in Parisian bakeries, just without the crust. And raspberries and blackberries were on sale yesterday. Win, win, win and win.

The original recipe is from my favorite blog, Skinny Taste, but I’ve simplified it a little bit, because who has time to sift flour? Not me.

You need:
– About 2 heaping cups of fresh berries (blackberries and/or raspberries and/or blueberries. I even make it with cranberries and blueberries sometimes)
– 3 eggs
– 6 tbsp sugar (but taste the berries. If they are tart, use more sugar, up to 10 tbsp)
– 1/2 cup flour
– 1 cup milk (I only have skim, any will work!)
– 2 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 and grease an oven-proof dish (Pyrex type). Pour the berries in the dish.

In a medium bowl, whisk eggs, sugar and flour. Then add milk and vanilla. Aim for the least clumpy possible. Pour over berries. Bake 45 min.

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Add some icing sugar if you’re a fancy pants.

I tried President’s Choice pumpkin ravioli last night, the one filled with pumpkin and amaretti cookies (the fact that cookies are in pasta should have make me think twice about buying it) . I couldn’t finish it, I found it so gross. Does anyone like it?

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Healthy “Fried” chicken

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Lest you think all I do is drink coffee and study, today’s post has neither coffee nor studying. Only chicken.

Easy, healthy, delicious. The recipe is inspired by Fee fie faux fried chicken from “Crazy Plates”, by the Podleski sisters.

You need:
– 2/3 cup flour
– Pinch thyme, paprika, salt, oregano, garlic powder, black pepper.
– 1 cup Panko breadcrumbs (or crushed cornflake cereal)
– 1 cup buttermilk *
– 10 pieces of skinless chicken thighs and/or drumsticks

Preheat oven to 425

Mix spices and flour in a bowl and set aside. In a separate bowl, pour the buttermilk. Put the breadcrumbs in a 3rd bowl.

Dip chicken in buttermilk, then flour mixture, then buttermilk and finally in breadcrumbs. Place on a pan covered in tin foil.

Bake for 40min, until chicken isn’t pink.

*If you don’t have buttermilk, you can always put a few teaspoons of vinegar in 1 cup of milk and let it sit for 5 min.

Finished product

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Lazy Student Recipes: Cuban/Caribbean-ish Rice and Beans

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Last weekend, I loafed around in my slippers, drinking tea and watching tv shows on Netflix. I always keep rice, a can of black beans and a can of tomatoes in my pantry. This is the kind of recipe I know I can make without having to run to the store. It’s also very budget friendly, especially if you buy dried beans and cook them yourself.

I know this requires simmering, but I swear it doesn’t take much effort. Just leave the pot on the stove and check on it once in a while! Trust me, I’m an engineer (in training) 😉

Essentials:

– A can of black beans
– A can of diced tomatoes
– Medium-sized Onion
– 2 Cloves Garlic
– 3 tsp Cumin
– 2 tsp Chili Powder
– Dash of hot sauce (to taste)
– 2-3 cups Rice

Prepare the rice as usual. In a large pot, fry the onion and garlic in oil until they brown. Add the spices, beans, tomatoes. Simmer for at least 20 min, or until the mixture is less liquid. Serve over rice.

The recipe is super simple. The goal is to use anything you have in your pantry. If you feel like using taco spice, go ahead. If you have some bell peppers, chop one up and saute it with the onion. I love it very spicy, and often use cayenne pepper or fresh jalapeno to season the meal. It will definitely warm you up. Just be creative! As you can see from the pictures, I added some shrimp to the dish and garnished with like wedges.

Are you a creative cook or do you prefer to follow a recipe to the letter? I’m a bit of both, it depends on what I’m making. I cook creatively but bake methodically.

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Too healthy, needs chocolate

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October is when I overdose on all things pumpkin (latte, oatmeal, bread, beer, yogurt, chili, flan, pie). Pumpkin purée is versatile and I love using it as a substitute for fat. Like apple sauce, it gives baked goods a moist texture without using tons of oil. So I made some low-fat muffins using Anna Olson’s recipe. They were good, but with the week I’ve had, healthy was not going to cut it. I proceeded to smother them in ganache. Problem solved.

I brought some to my friends place as fuel for our evening study session. I may not have perfect mastery of the course material, but I usually provide some home cooking. I think that’s reason enough to have me in your study group haha.

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Coffee Shop Cheats: Scones

Let’s talk about scones to kick off the series. I adore scones, god forbid I walk into a Second Cup on an empty stomach. I’ve tried to save money lately and although I’m not sure it’s working, I have good intentions. I haven’t spent more than 5$ in a coffee shop all month, which is a considerable improvement.

As it turns out, scones are really easy to bake. For me, a recipe that uses only one bowl, 1 utensil + your hands, and that takes less than 10 minutes to throw together, is golden.

Lovely Blackberry Scones

Make plain vanilla scones and add whatever fresh or frozen fruit you have on hand. At my local grocery store, they give you a small gift if your bill is $50+ (hey big spendah!). This week I received some fresh blackberries. Having no idea what to do with them, I froze them. This is pretty much the student reflex to any food you can’t cope with. Extra bread? Freeze it! Pasta? Freeze it! Extra broccoli? Freeze it. I digress.

Also, though usually recipes call for a specific milk fat content, I only stock skim milk in my fridge. It will do just fine.

Recipe Adapted for Student Kitchens. Original from Baking Bites.

Servings: 8 scones

Time: 10-15 min active (depending on how many cups of coffee you had today), about 40 min total.

Ingredients:
2cups flour
1/4 cup sugar
2 tsp baking powder
pinch salt
1/3 cup butter
3/4 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla

Pre-heat oven to 400 deg C. Prepare a pan with something non-stick (grease, parchment paper, etc).
Whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
Use your fingers to blend the butter into the flour mixture until it feels like sand. Go nuts here, it’s like free therapy.
Combine milk and vanilla, add to flour mixture, stir to form dough. Stir in berries.
Form a disk of dough 3/4 inch thick ( I do this directly on the pan). Cut into 8 wedges.
Bake 20min.

If you oven sucks as much as mine does, rotate the pan after 10min.

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