Since moving here, I have done the MOST amount of cooking that I have ever done in my life and you know what? I’m not even complaining one bit! My cooking skills are slowly improving and I’m trying to learn how to cook various dishes as well.
Heck, I think the I shocked the whole world and myself when I made my favorite Nasi Lemak few days ago. If pigs are starting to fly, you’ll know why.
Sumpah, it wasn’t too shabby okie. Never ever take your Nasi Lemak Makcik for granted people. That much I can tell you.
We generally cook more at home since groceries are crazy cheap here. I do enjoy going through the brochures every week to see what’s on offer and it’s the best thing ever coz it lets you know what goes on sale and half price!
We get THIS much of brochures once a week in the mail. Oh happy day.
AUD70 literally gets you a trolley full of goodies like this so cooking meals seems to be the more economical thing to do. And it’s healthy too of course. Back in Malaysia, I used to grip how RM50 can’t get you much. I always felt we were better off eating out in a mamak/ kopitiam or buy Groupon vouchers than to cook a meal coz it was so bloody expensive.
Recently I took photos of my meals so I could document like a weekly ‘Food Diary’. We didn’t necessarily eat these in the specific order but it’s just to give y’all a rough idea how to plan meals for the week.
In general, I keep our lunches simple since it’s only for Sairah. We do all our major cooking for dinner which the husband usually packs some for lunch the next day at work. Occasionally, I might cook a lil more to keep some food for the next day though its not so much so I try to cook ‘ngam-ngam’ or rather just enough. On certain days, Sairah and I will walk to the nearest mall or take a bus to another bigger mall nearby and have our lunch there though it’s becoming a rarity because of the weather.
So moving on:
Sunday Night: We had some guest over so we cooked quite a bit and had some extras leftover. Pictured here from L-R: Dhal, Tuna Cutlet, Egg Sambal, Beans and Chicken Kurma.
Close up of those cutlets – mom’s recipe of course.
Mmm egg sambal.
And my french beans with eggs – yummeh!
Monday Lunch: Ham Fried Rice
Usually if there’s leftover rice for whichever Asian meals I may have cooked the night before, I’ll use that rice to make Sairah her favorite Ham Fried Rice. We get our hams fresh from the deli and they are of good quality, so flavorful and smokey that it simple makes fried rice dishes and sandwiches stand out. This is one of Sairah’s favorite dishes – so simple yet so yummy (or at least that’s what she says and from what I can smell, heh).
She usually can finish an entire plate of fried rice all by herself and needs to have it at least once a week.
A total carb-lover this one.
Monday Dinner: Recycling food from the previous night, we had the left over dishes with some paratha to make it a light one. We found this brand of Parathas from the Indian Grocer that’s so good that we’ll never miss roti canai ever again. And on some days when I cook Indian and have plenty of dhal left-over, we’ll just have that with Paratha the next day and feel like its the most satisfying meal ever :)
Tuesday Lunch: As I said, its something as simple as bread, cheese and ham or sometimes its just a grilled cheese toastie with a glass of juice or her favorite Nesquik in hot milk. There are plenty of dips and sauces here which I sneak in sometimes into the sandwich. If she’s lucky enough, some days she’s allowed to have Nutella with Banana toastie for lunch, because I say live a lil right?
Tuesday Dinner: It’s noodles for dinner at least once a week. We can get just about any type of noodles here. Pictured here is your typical Malaysian maggi goreng.
Wednesday Lunch: Usually its either Hoki Fish fillet baked in the oven or chicken breast nuggets. It was just one of those frozen ones from a box that comes in handy once a week for Sairah’s lunch.
Look mom, my fish is smiling, har har.
Wednesday Dinner: Malay food comprising of Ayam Kecap Manis for Sairah’s sake and some kick ass spicy Sayur Masak Lemak.
Thursday Lunch: I call this the Sneaky Omelette coz they’re not just your regular omelette. I’ve laced it (well besides the obvious) with grated carrots. So essentially its almost an all-rounder dish with your daily dose of protein, vegs and meat! Crazily enough, this is one of Sairah’s highly requested dish too So.Much.Win!
Thursday Night: Chef’s Off Day!
We eat out as we tend to either go out on Thursday or Friday night as its late-night shopping at the mall. That’s when we usually do our grocery shopping. This chef ain’t working 7 days a week baby!
Friday Lunch: Sairah’s choice of sandwich and knowing her well enough, it’s bound to be Ham and Cheese sammich which she assembles herself. I”m slowly allowing her to be more pro-active in the kitchen. She helps prepare simple meals like this, she’s aware that once she eats her snacks, she’s in charge of putting the spoon into the sink and discarding the empty containers into the bin. It’s all part of giving her some small responsibilities. Which I”m thankful she follows through.
Soon we will move on to cleaning the house
Anyway, Sairah shall demonstrates how to make an awesome sandwich, haha.
First, you reach for a slice of bread.
Then you add ze cheese be it tasty or colby. These are my favorite two cheese which goes well for sandwiches.
Careful lay them on the fluffy bread coz cheese are sensitive creatures.
Then you add ham coz ham makes everything better! After Nutella that is. Hmm Nutella + Ham, wonder how that one will taste like.
Seal your sammich with another bread on top.
Check if your sandwich grill is hot enough and then get an adult to put it in. Give yourself a lil jiggle for making your own lunch.
Cut your perfectly grilled sandwich into two and let it cool.
And why, DIG IN of course and proclaim yourself to be the world’s greatest chef.
Friday Dinner: I tend to make either Chinese or Thai dinner once a week so that particular week was Thai.
Vegetables in Khao Soi curry
Thai style chicken cakes which you can get the recipe here.
Saturday Lunch: Wohoo, weekend screams GOING OUT and exploring! We have decided to dedicate one weekend lunch to scouting around for Malaysian food here in Melbourne. Since Sairah is obsessed with Chicken Rice, Chicken Rice it is for lunch. This was at Nyonya House @ Point Cook which I highly recommend.
Generally, sandwiches in cafes here goes for about AUD8 which I am not a happy camper paying for that because I feel you can buy all the ingredients (though I understand their breads could be freshly made) to make a whole loaf with that price so if we’re going to dine out, it has to be either Malaysian/Asian or Middle Eastern because for about AUD2-3 more you’ll be getting a more satisfying meal. At least for us la coz we’re cheap and like to maximize our money and tummy like that.
Saturday Dinner: I LOVE working with puff pastry. A few months back when mom was here we went to this quaint lil cafe after the Teselaar Tulip festival and we had this awesome pastry with spinach + cauliflower stuffing which I tried to mimic at home. It wasn’t 100% spot on but my version was equally satisfying.
I did overly generous stuff them with goodies so I shall go slow with em potatoes the next round.
But mm mm mmm, it was still a goodie for this foodie.
Sunday Lunch: A road trip to Mornington Peninsula was in order hence we stopped by this Kebab House which has been voted as the Best Kebab House in Victoria
And they were freaking right! After having food here, going to any other Kebab house subsequently has failed miserably to our palates! This is what happens when you’ve gone to the best.
Only problem having this again is the fact that it’s 1.5 hours away from where we live, hmpff!
Guess a road trip is in order. Like soon.
Sunday Dinner: Like I mentioned in this post, this has to be made at least once a week. And it has become a norm to make this in bigger portion so we can have it the next day for lunch.
So there you have it – our weekly meal plan round-up!
Let me know what you think and if you mommies out there have easy peasy lunch idea for the kids please do share as well.
To easy home-cooked meals…..only because it’s also easier to clean up