Meal time was so simple when I lived on the South 40 and could just wander out of my dorm and over to Bear’s Den, where my food was cooked for me. Now that I live in an apartment, I cook my own food.
I’m kidding, I don’t live off of ramen and frozen pizzas. The nice thing is that cooking delicious food doesn’t have to be an ordeal — there are a lot of inexpensive, healthy, and tasty meals and snacks that can be made with only a few ingredients.
Here are three good eats I made yesterday:
Sweet Potato, Kale, and Black Bean Hash
This meal took me about three hours from start to finish to make because I used dried beans instead of canned beans. The beans took 2.5 hours to prepare and cook, but the rest of the meal didn’t take long at all. Canned beans are faster, but dried beans are cheaper and don’t have any additives or preservatives.
Protip: Add some crumbled bacon at the end, because bacon.
I was sitting in the kitchen with one of my roommates. “You know that feeling when you’ve already eaten dinner, and you just want to go to sleep so you can wake up and have it be meal time again?” I asked her. She said she knew that feeling.
“Are you hungry?” I asked.
She nodded sheepishly. We’d both just finished eating a late-night snack.
“Me too. Maybe we should go to sleep then.”
“It’s only 10 o’clock,” she said. “I’m definitely not going to sleep for at least another two hours.” (That’s college for you.)
We stared at each other.
“Welp, looks like it’s snack time then,” I said.
We proceeded to make stovetop popcorn, which is extremely easy to do, but I’ll write some instructions for it anyway:
1. Coat the bottom of a pot or saucepan with oil.
2. Add popcorn kernels so that they cover the bottom of the pot in a flat layer.
3. Cover. Turn on heat to medium.
4. Stand by because the popcorn doesn’t take long at all, and if you leave it will be burnt before you can say Orville Redenbacher. Remove the pot from the heat when the popping stops.
5. Empty the popcorn into a large bowl and add a few shakes of garlic powder. Add salt to taste. Mix thoroughly.
It’s really good popcorn (much better than the microwave kind), and the fiber will keep you full!
No-Cook Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal
I saw this Buzzfeed article about making oatmeal in mason jars….and then I just kind of lost it. Some people get excited when they think about candy. I get excited when I think about the perfect bowl of oatmeal.* Hopefully my roommate didn’t think I was too strange when I kept talking about how excited I was to make this apple cinnamon mason jar oatmeal. I prepared it last night and ate it this morning. It was just as good as I had hoped it would be!
*If you want proof that college changes you, look no further than this post. I despised oatmeal growing up.