Oman dining: Eat well for less

Lifestyle Monday 27/March/2017 19:54 PM
By: Times News Service
Oman dining: Eat well for less

This delicious stuffed peppers recipe makes a colourful Mexican dish with kidney beans that’s easy to make and easy on the pocket - and yes, it tastes as good as it looks.

1 cup red kidney beans
1 tablespoon oil
1/2 onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon chilli powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon paprika
Freshly ground black pepper
3 bell peppers, halved (seeds removed)
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
1 cup shredded lettuce
Hot sauce, for serving
Lime wedges, for serving

Boil the kidney beans and keep aside or use 1 can of pre cooked beans. Preheat oven to 190°C and spray a large baking dish with cooking spray. In a large skillet over medium heat, heat about 1 tablespoon oil. Add onion and cook until the onion is tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute more. Add kidney beans and cook about 5 minutes. Add chilli powder, ground cumin, and paprika to bean mixture, then season with salt and pepper. Drizzle bell peppers with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Place the peppers, cut side up, in the baking dish and spoon bean mixture into each pepper. Bake till peppers are crisp-tender, about 15 minutes. Garnish with shredded lettuce and cilantro. Serve with wedges of lemon and hot sauce.

These skillet-browned tuna cakes are moist on the inside and crispy on the outside that are big on flavour but tiny budget wise.

2 170g cans tuna
2 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon water (or liquid from the cans of tuna)
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1/2 cup white bread torn into small pieces
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons chopped fresh spring onions, or shallots
A couple squirts of Tabasco
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 raw egg
1/2 teaspoon butter

Drain the liquid from the tuna cans. If you are using tuna packed in water, reserve a tablespoon of the tuna water, and add a teaspoon of olive oil to the tuna mixture in the next step. In a medium bowl, mix together the tuna, mustard, torn white bread, lemon zest, lemon juice, water, parsley, spring onions, and Tabasco. Sprinkle on salt and freshly ground black pepper. Taste the mixture before adding the egg to see if it needs more seasoning to your taste. Mix in the egg. Form into patties, chill: Divide the mixture into 4 parts. With each part, form into a ball and then flatten into a patty. Place onto a wax paper lined tray and chill for an hour. (You can skip the chilling if you want, chilling just helps the patties stay together when you cook them.) Heat the olive oil and a little butter (for taste) in a cast iron or stick-free skillet on medium high. Gently place the patties in the pan, and cook until nicely browned, 3-4 minutes on each side.

Aloo chana chaat is a spicy potato and chickpea snack. This recipe involves marinating boiled potatoes and chickpeas in spices to make a great savoury snack that is light on the pocket and the tummy too.

1-1/2 cups boiled chickpeas
1-1/2 cups potatoes boiled peeled and cubed in small pieces
1 tablespoon ginger finely grated
2 teaspoons green chillies finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon red chilli powder
1 teaspoon roasted cumin seed
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black salt
1/2 teaspoon mango powder
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons finely chopped
For Garnishing
1 tomato finely chopped
6 slices of lemon
6 whole green chilies mild
2 tablespoons oil
1 teaspoon sea salt or coarse salt

Wash and dry the whole green chillies. Heat a small frying pan on low medium heat, add the oil and green chillies, and cover the pan. Shake the pan slowly to move the chillies around. Note: It is important to keep the pan covered as the chillies will splatter. Cook the chillies for about 2 minutes turn off the heat, wait till it stops splattering and remove the lid. Chillies should be light brown if it is not cook for another minute. Remove and keep aside for garnishing.
Place chickpeas in a bowl and lightly mash. Add the potatoes and all the ingredients ginger, green chilli, red chilli powder, roasted cumin powder, salt, black salt, mango powder, lemon juice, sugar, and cilantro mix it well.
Let it sit for at least fifteen minutes or more, chickpeas and potatoes will absorb the flavour of spices.
Serve the aloo chana chat with side of tomatoes, fried green chillies, and lemon wedges.

The recipe contains simple, tasty ingredients; many of which you may already have lying around the house. And the beautiful spiral shape of the veggies is sure to impress even the most fickle of foodies.

1 cup tomato sauce
1/2 yellow onion diced
2 cloves garlic minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small eggplant
1 zucchini
1 yellow squash
Fresh thyme

Preheat oven to 190°C. Grease a baking dish (I used a 10in round pan) and pour tomato sauce into bottom. Sprinkle diced onion, and minced garlic on top of tomato sauce. Stir together with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Slice eggplant, zucchini and yellow squash into thin even slices. Beginning on the edge of the pan, place slices on top of tomato mixture in alternating patterns. First eggplant, then zucchini, then yellow squash. Repeat until pan has been covered. Drizzle oil on top of vegetables and season generously with salt and pepper. Sprinkle fresh thyme on top of mixture. Cover with parchment paper and cook 35-40 minutes or until centre is bubbling and vegetables have softened but haven’t turned brown. Let cool slightly, then enjoy.—[email protected]