As the elements continue to have us arriving to lectures damp and windswept, and the end of second semester draws ever closer, its only natural to be missing the comfort of your family’s favourite dishes. So, you’ll be glad to hear that you can re-create simpler, cheaper and easier but equally tasty versions to satisfy your cravings using just your microwave. You’ll still feel a sense of achievement, as you’ve technically cooked from scratch, only it will have taken you half the time and effort – so ideal.
Microwave Mac ‘n’ Cheese
Long days on campus often leave us craving some comforting, cheese covered, carbs, making this microwave mac ’n’ cheese recipe the perfect quick fix. Using the marmite will add a stronger savoury flavour, and the handful of spinach will inject some health and colour into this otherwise beige (but still beautiful) dish.
75g macaroni/other pasta
250ml cold chicken stock, milk or water
2 tsp butter
50g cheddar grated
handful spinach or ½ tsp Marmite (optional)
In a mug that holds twice the volume of your dry pasta (the bigger, the better), add the macaroni and your liquid of choice. Cover with cling film and pierce 3 times.
Stand the mug in a microwave-proof bowl to catch any spillages, and cook on high for 2 minutes. The liquid will bubble up and over the sides, so tip any liquid from the bowl back into the mug (be careful as it will be very hot) and give it a good stir. Leave to stand for 1 minute.
Repeat twice more or until the pasta is cooked (may take longer depending on the pasta), then remove from the microwave.
Stir through the butter, cheese and spinach or marmite, if using. The heat from the pasta should melt the cheese and wilt the spinach, but if not, pop back in the microwave for 30 secs.
A food group in its own right, cake is ALWAYS a good idea, but washing up several mixing bowls, waiting for the cake to cook and then cool isn’t appealing to any student. This is where the mug-cake revolutionises baking, allowing you to enjoy a light, fluffy, chocolatey sponge with minimal effort and using staple store cupboard ingredients.
1 slice of butter 1cm thick (30g)
6 squares of milk chocolate (30g)
2 tbp caster sugar
½ tsp vanilla extract
4½ tbsp plain flour
½ tsp baking powder
In a mug, melt the butter with the chocolate in the microwave for 30 to 40 seconds (800 watts).
Beat the mixture until smooth, then allow it to cool slightly. One by one, whisk in the egg, sugar, vanilla sugar, flour and baking powder.
Cook in the microwave for one minute 20 seconds (800 watts).
Allow to cool for one minute before eating.
Microwave Chicken Fajitas
Yes fajitas aren’t exactly gourmet, but the cooking process can be made even quicker and easier by using the microwave, meaning you can have a decent, healthy meal ready for you and your housemates in under 20 minutes, with only 1 dish to wash up. To make these vegetarian, simply omit the chicken and pile on the extras (cheese, sour cream, salsa, guac, etc.).
1 red pepper
1 green pepper
1 onion, sliced
Fajita spice mix or whatever you have in the cupboard e.g. Cajun spice
4 chicken breasts
Salt and pepper for seasoning
Wraps, to serve
Cheese and any other toppings
Take your green and red peppers, cut them into slices and throw them in a 2.5 qt dish that is microwave safe (and has a cover). Then add your onion slices as well.
Sprinkle generously with your spice mix – about 2tbsp should be enough.
Cut the chicken breast into long strips, add to the peppers and onions and add more spice mix, and season with salt and pepper.
Cover the dish and microwave on high for 10 minutes (this may be longer depending on the power of your microwave).
Serve with the wraps and ALL the toppings.
Edited by Jess Shelton