Here’s the first recipe from my minimal non-kitchen kitchen (see previously ). This recipe has proved itself to be a keeper already - I’ve made it 3 times in the past couple of weeks. It is basically a vegetable frittata that is cooked in a rice cooker. I even use the rice cooker bowl as a mixing bowl. It doesn’t get browned and crusty on the outside as with an oven-baked or stovetop fritatta , but turns out really nice and fluffy-creamy in texture. It’s a great all-in-one recipe that has protein, carbs and vegetables.
One of these will make 2 to 4 servings, so in our house that means a breakfast and a lunch for two people. It’s great on its own, but really makes a fantastic sandwich, put in the middle of a crusty loaf of bread. Add some fresh fruit and you’re all set.
Makes 2 to 4 servings
The egg mixture: * 6 large eggs * 2 Tbs. grated cheese of any kind (optional) * salt and pepper * 1 Tbs. olive oil
Heat up the frying pan with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add the garlic clove, and let the oil heat up until the garlic is lightly brown. Discard the garlic clove.
Add the vegetables. The key with the vegetables is to cut them up as small and thinly is you can, so that they cook fast. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
Put 1 tablespoon of olive oil in the rice cooker bowl. Spread it around the bottom and about 2 inches /5 cm up the sides, using a paper towel. Add the eggs, grated cheese, salt and pepper, and beat the eggs in the bowl (take care not to scratch the surface if you’re using a metal fork for this). Add the vegetables and distribute them evenly in the egg mixture.
Put the bowl in the rice cooker and switch on, using the regular rice setting. When the cooking cycle finishes, the frittata is done! Here’s how it looks straight out of the cooker:
Let cool completely before cutting into wedges and packing up for a bento. Optionally add a little ketchup or tomato sauce before eating.
This will keep, well wrapped, in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.
The vegetables can be cooked in advance and kept in the refrigerator, well covered, for 3-4 days, then added to the egg mixture before cooking. You can also use any leftover cooked vegetables you have around instead.
If you don’t have a cooker or burner: If you have a microwave, you can put the chopped up vegetables on a plate, drizzle with a little olive oil and salt and pepper, cover with plastic film, and microwave on the high setting for 5-6 minutes.
I’m slowly getting back to regular cooking in my not-a-kitchen kitchen. In my quest to assemble a minimalist, functional not-kitchen kitchen, so far I have acquired the following equipment:
Besides these things, I already have my old, trusty, slightly beat up 5-cup Zojirushi rice cooker. It’s more than 15 years old already but still going strong. It’s similar to this newer Zojirushi rice cooker , so a new one would cost $185, but I could probably get by with a cheaper model too. Besides the rice cooker, I have the following cooking equipment and such:
I am still procrastinating about getting a microwave oven, since I’m not sure if we are going to go for the built-in type of microwave for our final kitchen in the house or a standalone. I’m also waffling over whether or not to get a tabletop grill, a George Foreman type grill, an electric barbeque, and other things. I have been spending hours wandering around stores like Boulanger  and Darty , the French equivalents of Best Buy or the appliance department at Sears, taking notes and muttering to myself while the store attendants eye me suspiciously. But in the meantime, we have been surviving fine with the minimal equipment for most of our meals. (I suppose that the pressure cooker may seem unusual to have, but we’ve been carrying it around for a full year, and I mainly use it as a regular pot for boiling pasta and such.)
In any case, I’ll be posting more of my minimal-kitchen recipes here or on Just Hungry , depending on how bento-friendly they are of course!