Let me tell you the story of a simple guy who lived very humbly. He was checking his email when he the phone began to ring. His friend’s sweet and gentle voice instantly greeted him. She told him she was driving down for a job interview; and that she would take him up on his offer to visit him at any time. The simple guy was glad to hear that his good friend would take some time off her busy schedule to visit him.
However, after the simple guy hung up the phone, he realized that he was running on $12 for the rest of the month. Earlier that month, he sent a large part of his money back home for his mother’s medical treatments and the rest was used to pay his rent and bills. He couldn’t even afford to take her out to a descent restaurant! Luckily, he remembered what his mother told him before he moved out, “cook simple, affordable, but healthy my son.” With this is mind, he remembered several recipes he’d stumbled upon online. He knew all of his friend’s favorite dishes consisted of salmon, so it narrowed the list down to two affordable dishes–he still had two frozen salmon fillets in his freezer.
Dish #1: Salmon Ramen with Fresh Vegetables
- 2 Ramen bricks
- 1 Tbsp. butter
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 1-1/2 cups milk
- 4 oz. cream cheese, cubed
- 1 cup carrots, julienned
- 1 cup zucchini, julienned
- 2 cans (6.5 oz each) salmon (the “low sodium” kind), drained and broken into chunks
- Heat the butter in a saucepan and add the chopped onion.
- Saute the onion for 2 minutes.
- Add milk, cream cheese and 1 flavor packet.
- Cook and stir until mixture is smooth. Do not boil.
- Add carrots, zucchini and salmon and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Meanwhile, cook the pasta with the flavor seasoning packet lasts for 3 minutes.
- Drain the liquid.
- Add ramen noodles to the salmon mixture and vegetables. Mix gently and serve immediately.
This dish seemed perfect: the sweet and gentle flavor of the dish matched his friend’s voice. However, he knew that she was making a big change in her life. For this reason, he decided to further motivate her bravery and boldness with…
Dish #2: Ramen Noodles with Chilli Salmon
- 1 pack ramen or instant egg noodles
- 750ml chicken or vegetable stock
- 2 pieces skinless salmon fillets
- 1 red chilli, sliced
- 2 spring onions, sliced
- soy sauce
- ½ bunch coriander (I call it cilantro), chopped
- 1 lime, quartered
- Cook the noodles following the pack instructions and divide between 2 noodle bowls.
- Heat the stock in a deep frying pan and when it is simmering, slip in the salmon.
- Cook for 2 minutes
- Add the chilli and spring onions and a dash of soy and cook for 3 minutes or until the salmon is firm to the touch.
- Lift a piece of salmon into each bowl and divide the broth between them.
- Add some coriander to each and squeeze over some lime or lemon juice.
When the simple guy’s friend arrived to his apartment, she was delighted by the zesty aroma that cheerfully caressed her nose. She enthusiastically hugged the simple guy while saying, “I’m so glad to see you again!” He was shocked at first, but with a smile emerging on his face, the simple guy asked his friend: “Are you hungry?”
NOTE: In order for his meal to be somewhat healthy, the simple guy used air-dried instant ramen noodles and did not use the seasoning packet that comes with each noodle brick. This lowers the fat and sodium contents. Also, Maruchan is not an air-dried instant ramen brand; the logo just looked nice.