If you’re new to cooking and feeling intimidated, here are my nine key pieces of advice to set yourself up for success.
1. Read the whole recipe before you begin, noting what equipment you’ll need. It can be helpful to pull out the pots and pans you’ll need to make cooking go smoothly.
2. Be nice to yourself. Maintain a balance of trying new things and giving yourself permission to take it easy.
3. Do any dishes that are in the sink before you start cooking.
4. Prep the ingredients before you start cooking.
5. Cooking gets easier over time. A recipe not coming out as expected is not a reflection of you.
6. If you’re making a recipe that calls for the oven to be preheated, do it the second you start prepping. This way, it’ll be at the correct temperature and you won’t waste time.
7. Put a damp paper towel under your cutting board(Opens in a new window) to secure it to your countertop.
8. Place a mixing bowl(Opens in a new window) on your work area to use as a waste bin for easy cleanup. This way, you won’t always be reaching for the trash can.
9. Use a bigger cutting board, mixing bowl, or colander than you think you need.
Brown Rice and Adzuki Bean Bowls
(Makes dinner for 4)
Want to know one little trick to make your life easier? Use a big enough bowl(Opens in a new window) when you’re mixing the slaw. That way little bits don’t fly out onto the counter and you have space to toss the ingredients evenly.
½ large Napa cabbage head (12 oz/340 g), sliced (6½ cups)
3 small carrots, shaved with a vegetable peeler(Opens in a new window)
1 cup (100 g) sugar snap peas, sliced
2 tablespoons sesame seeds, plus more for serving
½ cup Toasted Sesame and Miso Dressing (see below)
1 cup (6¾ oz/190 g) short-grain brown rice, rinsed(Opens in a new window)
2 tablespoons chopped(Opens in a new window) fresh cilantro leaves, plus more for serving
1 (15-oz/425-g) can adzuki or small red beans, rinsed(Opens in a new window)
2 avocados, sliced(Opens in a new window)
1 small fresh red chile, sliced
How to Make It
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. While it comes to a boil, mix the cabbage, carrots, snap peas, and sesame seeds in a large bowl with ¼ cup (60 ml) of the dressing. Use your hands to make sure everything gets evenly coated, or use a spatula. Set aside and toss occasionally.
Once the water is boiling, add the rice and 1 tablespoon kosher salt. Reduce to a simmer and cook until the rice is just tender, 22 to 26 minutes. Drain.
Just before serving, fold the cilantro into the cabbage salad. Divide the rice, cabbage salad, beans, and avocados among four bowls. Drizzle with the remaining ¼ cup dressing, and sprinkle with the chile and more cilantro and sesame seeds, if you like.
Toasted Sesame and Miso Dressing
(Makes 1 Cup Dressing)
¼ cup (70 g) white miso
1/3 cup (75 ml) rice vinegar
¼ cup (60 ml) canola oil
¼ cup (60 ml) low-sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
How to Make it
Put the miso in a small bowl (or use the Twist & Pour Salad Dressing Mixer(Opens in a new window)), then slowly whisk in the vinegar until you get a loose paste. Whisk in the canola oil, soy sauce, and sesame oil. Refrigerate the dressing in an airtight container for up to 1 month.
Healthyish is available to purchase here(Opens in a new window). We’ll be hearing from Lindsay more this month, so check back over the next few weeks to get more tips.