Alrighty my buddies, it’s time for another round of Cooking with TJ, the humorously helpful recipes for the culinarily impaired! Up on today’s docket are three college-student classics: top-ramen, protein shakes, and quesadillas!
1. Top Ramen
Now, first things first: I know that there are both microwave and stove-top methods of preparing Top Ramen. And, if you read my last Cooking with TJ post, then you know that I am the last person to bash microwave cooking. But it needs to be understood unequivocally that microwave preparation of Top Ramen is a complete and utter disgrace to the name of noodles. It may be fast and easy, but honestly if you don’t have the extra 5 minutes in your schedule to boil water on the stove and make ramen noodles the right way, then you seriously need to rethink your life because your schedule is way too busy.
Now, because I know that most people understand how to make Top Ramen, I’m just going to share with you some of my favorite variations.
- For a more filling meal, add some fried onions, hot dog, or peppers to the noodles after you’ve drained the water. Then fry that up to create a fake stir-fry type dish.
- If your feeling like a lighter snack, only use a half-packet of seasoning. It’s much lower in sodium and still tastes great.
- If you need to add some protein to your ramen, just crack an egg into the pot while you are boiling the noodles, and stir it up so the eggs cook through. Add your seasoning packet and you’ll have a delicious broth-y soup with egg!
2. Peanut Butter and ??? Sandwich
Of course peanut-butter sandwiches are nothing new. Most kids raised in the USA have been eating them since they had teeth (or possibly earlier!) But there is often some tension revolving around how to best prepare said sandwich…
Now you may not have come up against this much opposition in your sandwich crafting endeavors, but it is a hot-button issue that will no doubt cause social divisions for decades. There is, however, a second, perhaps even more important question: what do you pair the peanut butter with?
The most obvious and common partner is jelly. I, however, have never been a fan of jelly or jam or any fruit-based spread to be honest. That is why I prefer my peanut-butter sandwiches with honey. Or, if I’m in more of a desert-type mood, with Nutella. Although… as I’m writing this I’m wondering how a peanut-butter and Oreo sandwich would taste… Yeah, that’s going to have to happen. I’ll let you know how it turns out.
Now this is a recipe that no college-age student should be without. Again, like the top-ramen, a microwave preparation method is possible, but is far inferior to the stove top method, which only takes like 3 extra minutes. So take the extra time and effort you lazy bums! It’s totally worth it!!! Now, I’ve learned some wonderful tricks to quesadillas that may come in handy:
- At most grocery stores in the US (I have no idea what it’s like elsewhere) you can find raw tortillas that are refrigerated and ready to be thrown onto a griddle. Buy these instead of the pre-cooked ones. They are sooooooo much better and only take like 2 minutes to cook.
- Rub a stick of butter on the inside of the pan you use to cook it with. This is a very old and well-known trick, but many people skip it for the sake of time. It only takes a few extra seconds, but the buttery goodness of your cooked tortilla will make every second worth it.
- Buy some Doritos chips, crush them up, and add them to your quesadilla. Don’t knock it till you try it!!!
Thanks for reading! And come back soon for my ULTIMATE QUESADILLA HACK!!! You really don’t want to miss it!