So many busy days ahead and I'm starting to get a little stressed over masters. Even though I'm not applying for any. Empathy stress. All I hear around uni and in my classes is masters, masters, masters. It's like being back at school again where all the other options are dismissed or little to no information is provided about them and all we're trained for is uni, uni, uni. My heart breaks a little for the current 18 year olds who will graduate with me at 19 years old and finish their masters by 20. I know everyone is different and some people genuinely do know what they want in life and have worked their little academic butts off to get to where they are now but personally, I wouldn't be who I am today if I'd have gone to uni at 17 and not taken the two gap years that I did. I feel so much pressure is placed on our shoulders at such an impressionable age to go to uni that other opportunities are missed out on. What about taking a year off to do an internship or two? What about volunteering locally or abroad? What about getting a part time or a full time job? What about all the other academic options that aren't university? Why aren't any of these discussed at schools and why aren't further options discussed at university?
I have no idea where all of that just came from! Okay stop, recipe time.
In case you hadn't noticed I seem to alternate between oats and avocado on toast. I'll leave you with an exciting guess as to which one I chose today!
Using the left over "rice" from my shrimp stirfry I whipped up another one during my way too short lunch break today. Grated carrot, diced red bell pepper, leek, onion, garlic, chili, ginger, dried italian herbs and a swirl of my tomato sauce made up this stir fry. It tasted absolutely amaze however it was lacking something. Much to the amusement of my housemates (who had to taste every change too), I set out to discover what it was. First I added some extra tomato sauce, which was lush but still not it. Then some salt and pepper, which also helped but wasn't quite it. Raisins? (Definitely not - please don't try these it was pretty gross) Cheese? Extra carrot? Nope, nope and nope. Then came the peanut butter, a desperate suggestion from Danielle who was either laughing at my by now or with me. Either or she found the solution! This literally brought the whole thing together and for some reason just WORKED. I added a (generous) tablespoon (to the bowl... maybe more to my mouth) and also toasted some peanuts to add too. I say that so nonchalantly however I had and still have no idea how to toast peanuts. I literally put them in a hot frying pan. The first batch burnt horrendously and the second batch were pretty tasteless. So yeah, long story short: add some peanuts. Delicioso!
Here's a fun fact! A few housemates and I were happily making dinner a few hours ago and my boyfriend popped in to say hi on his way home from work. As he was leaving he jokingly called out 'bye, I hope your burgers don't have sugar in them!" because we're romantic and loving like that. I lovingly stuck my middle finger up as he pranced off and muttered oh yeah, sugar in homemade burgers, suck on that...... okay, you get it. But something in the back of my mind was making me race through the ingredients and slap-bang-back-in-my-face: the flavored breadcrumbs. After 9 days of meticulous label checking I'd gone and deemed myself an expert. Big mistake - Dextrose, sugar AND bloody glucose syrup. In breadcrumbs. Why?!? Dinner became a sad cheese and cucumber sandwich. Luckily I'd had a fun snack after school so it didn't sting too much.
Aubergine/Eggplant crisps & homemade tzatziki
Cut your aubergine into slices, not too thin as they really do shrivel! Pop on a metal baking tray, lightly cover in oil and pop some salt on them too. In the over for 15 mins at 200 degrees, flip them and then another 10 mins. Yes, it was that easy! These were a bit of an experiment so feel free to go cray on your own seasonings.
The tzatziki was also a bit of an experiment as I wanted to somehow up the protein game of this well loved snack. I made mine with kwark, garlic and grated cucumber but also added a good dollop of cottage cheese. It was gurt lush (very lovely for my non bristolian readers).
More tomorrow! I'll be sharing my top secret chickpea burger recipe so better get excited!
Buenas noches, hasta mañana, Tiger Laylay xo