I’ve decided to try something new on the blog! Now that I’m sticking quite religiously to my ritual of making a meal plan for the month, featuring three different meals every week, I thought I would share what I’ve been cooking. I’m constantly told, ‘I could never go vegan…what do you even eat??’ and the truth is, it isn’t always easy to find plant-based, whole food, zero waste recipes online. Here, I’ll share what I cook up, where I’ve found the recipes, and what I think of them.
How does it work? I batch cook large amounts of three different meals at the start of the week, and then throughout the week eat them interchangeably for breakfast, lunch and dinner (I’ve always been one to love savoury breakfasts)! Once my fridge is stocked, it’s a free for all for every meal. So, here’s what I’m eating this week.
Red Lentil Curry and Turmeric Brown Rice
I love Indian food, and this is the first time I’ve attempted to make a curry without using a prepackaged sauce. I left out the curry paste in the recipe, as all curry pastes I could find were full of oil and sugar, and added some extra curry powder. The taste is milder than I’m used to, so I’ll probably add some extra chilli and salt (my weakness) before eating. The texture of the lentils with the rice will be super delicious throughout the week.
‘Tuna’ Casserole Chickpea Pasta
I changed a lot from the original recipe, which is actually for a tuna bake. I used the substitution recommended for a nut-free recipe, replacing the cashews with some cannellini beans, not because I have a nut allergy, but because beans are sooooo much cheaper. Other adjustments included adding some tahini and nutritional yeast in to the sauce to give it more of a creamy flavour, doubling the mushrooms, and substituting the peas (I absolutely detest peas) with chopped zucchini. It tastes just like a tuna casserole, and I’ll probably do my usual of adding a bit of chilli and salt before eating (I love strong flavours, don’t hate me!)
Chunky Veggie Stew
Just cooking this stew made me feel zen and healthy. It’s a combo of so many amazing earthy flavours, and I know it will be the perfect start or end of the day when you need something that you know is nourishing your body in all the right ways. Smells amazing, and there is nothing nasty about it. I don’t even think I’ll need to add a thing to it before I gobble it up – I’ll just be devouring steaming bowls when I feel my body screaming for nutrients.
Alongside my main meals this week, I’ve got a supply of apples, bananas and almonds that I snack on throughout the day. A go-to snack is a slice of seed and grain toast with some peanut butter, banana and almonds, but I can just eat a banana or an apple plain if I’m lazy. I also made a half batch of these healthy fudge brownies, which are in the freezer for when my sweet tooth strikes.
Altogether, this week’s groceries cost me $41.44, or around $1.97 per meal. I was really pleased with this, and it’s pretty balanced – I did splurge on some of the more expensive stuff this week, like peanut butter and maple syrup, but I saved money on apples (which I got from work), and lots of ingredients for the recipes, like red lentils and brown rice. I’ve been trying to use up what I have, and find ingredients that only require a few extra purchases. Plus, as a bonus, I actually got to shop at a local greengrocer for my fresh ingredients, which is usually hard for me because of my schedule, so it was a win for my wallet and a win for my local businesses.
What are you eating this week?
Featured image: Alejandra Parejo