Let’s face it. Food can be a true divider of people. For some, it’s really just the fuel required to keep living, studying and partying. For others, eating (and preparing the meal) is an event to be enjoyed and savoured; the stuff messy and tasty memories are made of. When it comes to students, the number of food preferences vary even more. Some are vegetarians, others only eat meat. Some consider 2-minute noodles and a bowl of cereal a standard dinner, while others need homemade goodness and multiple courses to feel truly satisfied. Here, we’ve gathered together a few books (and some tasty recipes) for every type of student.
Save with Jamie – $29.99 at the Co-op
FOR THE BUDGET-CONSCIOUS
Save with Jamie – Jamie Oliver
There’s not many people around the developed world who don’t know who Jamie Oliver is. Here, he brings together a variety of money-saving recipes that help you ‘shop smart, cook clever, waste less.’ Because, let’s be honest, a little extra coin in your pocket is always a good thing (whether you’re a student or not!).
Jamie’s Hit and Run Tray-Baked Chicken is the perfect dish when you’re pressed for time or you and your friends decide to have a dinner party at the last minute. Simply tear, mix, marinate, bake and enjoy!
WHAT YOU NEED:
4 large ripe tomatoes
2 red onions
1 red capsicum
1 yellow capsicum
6 skinless, boneless free-range chicken thighs
4 cloves of garlic
1/2 bunch of fresh thyme
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Hit n Run Tray-Baked Chicken Image: Save with Jamie by Jamie Oliver
WHAT YOU DO:
Preheat the oven to 180ºC.
Quarter the tomatoes and place them in a large baking dish or roasting tray (roughly 25cm x 30cm).
Peel the onions and cut into large wedges, then de-seed and roughly chop the peppers. Add all these to the tray along with the chicken thighs.
Squash the unpeeled garlic cloves with the back of your knife and add to the tray, then pick over the thyme leaves and sprinkle over the paprika. Add the oil, balsamic and a good pinch of salt and pepper.
Toss everything together really well to coat, then spread across the tray, making sure the chicken isn’t covered by the vegetables.
Roast for around 1 hour, or until the chicken is golden and cooked through, turning and basting it a couple of times during cooking with the juices from the tray.
Serve the tray bake with a lovely green salad on the side. You could also buddy it up with a little rice, polenta or a loaf of crusty bread to mop up the juices.
FOR THE ‘I CAN’T COOK’ BREED
I’d Eat That – $23.24 at the Co-op
I’d Eat That – Callum Hann
Attention all novice cooks (and lazy students), Callum Hann (MasterChef runner-up) brings together more than 90 deliciously easy recipes for you to create and enjoy at home in his book, I’d Eat That. There’s also heaps of tips on cooking fundamentals, ingredient selection and more.
Callum’s Zucchini and Haloumi Fritters are just one of the lip-smacking recipes featured. Try them out!
Zucchini Haloumi Fritters; Image: I’d Eat That by Callum Hann
WHAT YOU NEED:
80 g grated haloumi cheese
3 spring onions, ends removed, thinly sliced on an angle
3 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf (Italian) parsley
Free-range egg, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons plain flour
2 tablespoons olive oil
WHAT YOU DO:
Coarsely grate the zucchini onto paper towel and squeeze out any excess moisture.
Add to a large bowl with all the other ingredients, except the olive oil, and mix together.
Once everything has come together, use your clean hands to form four fritters slightly smaller than the palm of your hand. Place these on a lined baking tray or large plate then refrigerate for 15–30 minutes to help them firm up slightly.
Preheat a large non-stick frying pan over a high heat, add the olive oil and cook the fritters in batches. Fry until golden on both sides then serve immediately.
Further Reaeding For the Cooking-Challenged:
The Illustrated Student Cookbook – $9.30 at the Co-op
FOOD FOR THOUGHT (LITERALLY)
Student Brain Food – $16.70 at the Co-op
We all know how easy it is to fall in the trap of snacking on the junk food while studying for hours on end. A bag of chips here, a few energy drinks there, followed by a packet of lollies and a pizza. But next time you reach for another bag of Twisties, you might want to reconsider it – foods like these (Cookie Monster would call them a sometimes food) aren’t at the top of the brain food list. Eating well is super important when studying, as it boosts energy, increases brain power and helps you perform your best at university.
So, what types of food should you eat? Here’s just a few:
1. Oily fish
As they say, fish is fantastic brain food, and this is particularly true for oily fish such as salmon, tuna, mackerel and sardines. This is due to the high amount of Omega-3 fatty acids. These fatty acids are essential for optimum brain function. Woo hoo! Go OILY FISH.
Legumes, you legends! Chickpeas, lentils, kidney beans and more – legumes are packed with folic acid for improved memory recall function, as well as protein for powering the brain.
3. Dark Chocolate
Awesome news, peeps! Chocolate is good for you. Just make sure it’s the dark chocolate, ‘cos that’s where all the benefits are. Dark chokky has been proven to enhance memory, as well as increase alertness and clarity by boosting blood flow to the brain. The darker the chocolate, the better!
The peel of the apple contains something called ‘quercetin’, a powerful antioxidant that’s proven to enhance memory function. They’re also packed with fructose, a natural sugar that can wake you up naturally and help keep you going (and unlike coffee, there will be no sudden energy crash).
Check out Lauren Lucien’s Student Brain Food for a range of deliciously healthy recipes that’ll feed your brain and help you achieve your best
CLASS IS OVER, I’M HUNGRY, LET’S EAT!
Don’t let a lack of skill or money get in the way of a good feed. Charlotte Pike’s The Hungry Student series is here to rescue you, helping you eat well and stay satisfied, all on a seriously tight student budget. These books are filled with fantastic recipes for you to whip up during uni; from quick dinners to make in study breaks to wholesome lunches, morning-after breakfasts and meals to impress mates and dates – there really is a dish for all occasions. Feast on a hearty serve of Lamb Meatballs with Cous Cous, as featured in The Hungry Student Cookbook. Why not whip up the Beetroot Tart from The Hungry Student Vegetarian Cookbook, a delectable dish sure to delight herbivores and meat-eaters alike. Don’t worry, those with a sweet tooth aren’t forgetten, with The Hungry Student Easy Baking packed with baked good awesomeness. Did someone say Banana, Coconut and Cardamon Cake?
MORE MADE-FOR-STUDENT COOKBOOKS!
The Hungry Student Cookbook – $15.80 at the Co-op
Student Grub – $15.80 at the Co-op
The Student Vegetarian Cookbook – $23.20 at the Co-op