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Take Away Food

Asked by Indre7777. Answered on 2nd February 2011

Full question

Hi, I want you to ask for weekly low-budget menu to take away for work. I'm student and now taking part time job. As work is the city centre all the places where you can eat are quite expensive. So I would like to get weekly menu which I could use to bring food to work. We have microwave here. That would be good that some products would be able to use for next days meal too.

Our answer

If you have a microwave at work then your home-made lunch repertoire is significantly enhanced. Pasta is a good place to start as it is inexpensive and can be transported and reheated easily. Try to cook your pasta "al dente" as it will soften slightly more as it is reheated. From Nigella Express try Festive Fusilli (p326) and Minestrone in Minutes (p363). From Kitchen try Slut's Spaghetti (p188), Small Pasta with Salami (p200) or Italian Tomato and Pasta Soup (p470). And from How to Eat Macaroni Cheese which has some suggestions for variations (p475-6). Salads are also a useful option if you don't have time to reheat and from Express we suggest Sesame Peanut Noodles (p261), Crunchy Salad with Hot and Sour Dressing (p265), Mortadella Pasta Salad (p269), and Tuna with Beans (p284) - with some peppery rocket or watercress added to make it a meal in itself.

Stews, chillis and curries are also a good reheating option and can be eaten soup-style with a hunk of crusty bread. Kitchen has Beer-Braised Beef (p330) using an inexpensive cut of meat, Chorizo and Chickpea Stew (p202), Cheesy Chilli (p31) and South Indian Vegetable Curry (p154).

You should make sure that your food can be kept adequately chilled before you want to eat it and if your office doesn't have a fridge then it is worth buying a small insulated bag and a gel pack which can be frozen overnight and slipped into the bag with the food to keep it cool (or freeze a small bottle of water that you can drink later). And when reheating any food make sure it is reheated to piping hot.

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