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3 super easy uni recipes, from food vlogger Katie Pix

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Food vlogger and former student Katie Pix (University of Warwick, 2012) has teamed up with our favourite homeware shop John Lewis to share a bunch of easy recipes to get you through those trying first weeks of university.

Katie created her go-to dishes when she was a theatre student at Warwick, and was “determined to swing my diet away from super noodles and cheap vodka.”

Here are her three student survival staples...

Easy udon noodle soup

Why it’s great:Filled with delicious vegetables in a broth, this dish is all about balancing sweet, salty, spicy, savoury and sour. It’s a real crowd pleaser that proves you don’t have to eat out to warm your cockles with delicious udon ramen.

“For extra speed and economy, cook up a big batch of the base stock and freeze for later when you can use it to make sure forgotten fridge veggies don’t go to waste.

What to do:

Put the water on the hob and once boiling add stock cube, stir in and reduce to a gentle simmer. If using fresh stock rather than stock cubes, treat the same but don’t boil. Add in the teriyaki sauce, soy sauce and fish sauce.

Add in half the chilli, the grated ginger and the finely sliced stalks of the coriander. Leave this to simmer and infuse for a couple of minutes.

Add in the chicken thighs. Leave to simmer for 4 minutes.

Then add in your lovely veggies - pak choi, chestnut mushrooms and spring onions – remember, if you prefer different veggies, go for them, this is your soup!

Once your veggies are in, add in the noodles too, straight away.

These should take about a couple of minutes maximum.

Add in your bean sprouts and roughly chopped coriander, season with extra soy sauce if needed, add lime juice to taste, sprinkle over the rest of the chilli (you want this to have real zing, so don’t be afraid of the lime and chilli!) and serve.

 

One-pot sausage casserole

Why it’s great:This hearty dish is inspired by the bold flavours of Italian casseroles. This meal is a great vehicle for using up leftover veggies or just sneaking some extra goodness into your diet. The robust flavours of the sausages and tomatoes will transform bland vegetables too.

What to do:

Brown sausages in a large saucepan on a medium high heat until golden. Remove from pan and set aside.

Add olive oil, turn the heat to medium and throw in finely chopped onion, celery and carrot. Add a pinch of salt and gently cook until slightly softened, making sure you pick up those caramelised bits of sausage from the pan.

Add roughly chopped garlic and finely chopped rosemary to the mixture and continue to soften until translucent and tender. Add sausages back into the pan when your veggies are ready.

Add peeled plum tomatoes, breaking them apart in your hands as they go into the pan.

Wash potatoes and chop into big chunks. Add to the pot and stir. Simmer for about 15 minutes until the potatoes are nearly tender, then add in your butter beans and stir gently (don’t break up the beans). If the casserole is looking a bit dry, add more water.

Check seasoning as sometimes, tinned tomatoes need a touch of sugar to balance the taste. Don’t forget a good grind of pepper and even some crushed chillies if you want a bit of heat.

Throw in the spinach and stir until wilted and evenly distributed.

Roughly chop basil and finely grate the lemon zest and stir into the mixture with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and serve. Great with some chunky bread, mashed potatoes, polenta or just on its own.

 

Sticky toffee mug cake

Why it’s great:The microwave is probably the most vilified piece of kitchen equipment there is, but it’s an incredibly useful bit of kit when you think outside the box. It’s the perfect way to create everyone’s favourite dessert, sticky toffee pudding, in a matter of minutes. Try it once and I promise you’ll never look at your microwave in the same way again.

What to do:

Start by cooking your sauce. Put 20g butter, 30g dark muscovado sugar and 2 tablespoons of crème fraîche in a separate mug from the one your pud will cook in and cook in the microwave on full power for 2 minutes (all cooking times are based on 800W microwave), then stir until combined – careful, it’s molten!

Place the chopped dates and water in a separate mug.

Blast in the microwave for 1 minute until the dates soften.

To the same mug, add the butter and stir until melted.

Again, in the same mug, stir in the sugar, flour, egg and walnuts and mix them until thoroughly combined.

Cook this mixture in the microwave at full power for 2 minutes.

Just before serving, drizzle the caramel sauce over the sticky toffee pud and don’t be stingy – if you’re going to have sticky toffee pud, go all in and enjoy!

For all the ingredients needed for these recipes, see the John Lewis site here




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