With the world under lockdown due to COVID-19, there are many people who are meeting their kitchens (beyond the microwave and kettle) for the first time. This is a wonderful opportunity to get creative with home-cooked meals; learn more about your food preferences; eat more fresh foods, and practice mindful eating.
Lockdown rules and the need for social distancing means we need to eliminate daily trips to the shops. When you rely on eating out or getting deliveries, you don’t really put much thought into what ends up on your plate. So grabbing tins off shelves and anything frozen while you panic-buy to hoard during the lockdown isn’t going to be much help.
Having a few easy to cook and prepare foods in the house is always a good idea.
Association for Dietetics in South Africa has this advice:
The freezer is your friend: soup, stew, grated cheese, overripe bananas (out of the peel), meat, chicken pieces, sliced bread, chopped onion, and berries all freeze excellently.
In the can: tomatoes are always great to have, coconut milk, chick peas, beans, corn, and fish (like tuna or mackerel). But bear in mind canned foods are high in salt, so be sure to drain and rinse before using.
Fruit & Veg: cabbage, carrots, butternut, pumpkin, sweet potato, potatoes, onions, lemons, apples, oranges and pears all last two to three weeks, if not longer.
Pasta, rice, maize meal: these are absolute staples – just make sure you have a sauce to eat them with.
Breakfast: choose porridges like Maltabela or Pronutro over sugary cereals.
Sauces, spices and spreads: even if you do cook regularly, these are the things we often go to the shops for and leave without. Don’t forget to stock up on oils, soya sauce, pasta sauces, marmite, honey, and nut butter.
Dairy and protein: like eggs; cottage cheese; yoghurt or maas, and long-life milk.
Healthy snacks: we’re in lockdown and snacking is a reality so try keep it as healthy as possible. Examples include: nuts, dried fruit, biltong, popcorn (healthier than chips), rice or corn cakes, and keep some dark chocolate in your pantry.
Visit Food for Mzansi for some real South African favourites.