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Sunday 10 December 2023 Dublin: 7°C

Back to basics - here's some simple dishes everyone should master

You’ll be ruling that kitchen in no time.

WITH THE RECENT Leaving Cert results, many of our readers (or their children), will be thinking of going to college and possibly leaving the nest.

Moving out for the first time is quite the adventure – and can be quite daunting. You’ll be looking after yourself, making your own meals, doing your own washing – or collecting it in a bin bag to bring home to Mammy at the weekend, same same.

But whatever you end up doing laundry-wise, you’re going to have to feed yourself. So, in order to make the transition somewhat easier we thought we’d round up some of the easier dishes to master by yourself, so you don’t end up at the chipper every night.

And if you’re not moving out of home for the first time but you still can’t cook – pull up a pew, we’ve got some tasty recipes coming up.

(Here’s where you can check our a recent article on some skills to master.)

Cafe de Paris, Cooking Class Jeff Kubina You'll be this good in no time Jeff Kubina


Scrambled eggs or an omelette are essentially the same thing – when  you’re cooking them you either move them around a little with a wooden spoon till they’re cooked (scrambled) or leave them to set as a whole (omelette).

Here’s a quick how-to on how to scramble eggs, and remember once you’ve nailed that you can add loads of ingredients to make your scramble or omelette more interesting – cheese, ham, onion, peppers, potatoes – whatever you have around. Possibly the quickest way to get a delicious hot home-made meal.

Dani Spies / YouTube

And if you master that, and are feeling adventurous, here’s how to poach an egg, so you can ramp up those fanciness stakes. Eggs Benedict you say?

SuperValuIreland / YouTube


Now, soups are soup-er (not sorry) easy to make, and once you’ve mastered the basics you can just go wild.

At the very (very) minimum it involves chopping some veg up (try carrots, potatoes, celery, onions), covering in water or stock (you can saute – lightly fry – the onions first if you like), bringing to the boil  and cooking until the veg are tender. Then you can eat it like that or blitz to your heart’s content for a smoother version.

jeanine jeanine

Now this version  of a ‘Many-veggie vegetable soup’ (pictured above) is a little more fancy than that just described, but the idea is the same. The best thing about soup is you can totally adjust it to suit your tastes. So add as much veg as you like, or take something out. It’s completely up to you.

You can make soup as a light dish that you can pair with a sandwich for lunch or you can make something more hearty such as minestrone or this chicken and vegetable rice noodle soup which could do for dinner. This combines your protein, carb and veg into one bowl and you can always make a big batch and freeze it for meals during the week or month.

SuperValuIreland / YouTube

Will you add to your cooking repertoire with any of these recipes? Have you any foolproof must-know recipes to share in the comments below?

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