To cook pasta for a person, weigh out 75g of pasta, this is around one mug full. While doing this boil around a 1/2 to 3/4 full pan of water on the hob, add a small pinch of salt to the water. When the water boils place the pasta in and time it as stated on the back of the pasta packet. This varies from 5 minutes up to around 12 minutes. Check your pasta about two minutes from the end to see if it is cooked to your liking already, if not leave it in for the full time and test again.
Once ready, drain the pasta in a colander and add a small slither of butter or a drizzle of olive oil to stop the pasta sticking together.
If you choose to cook spaghetti, and don’t have a scales the amount of spaghetti that can fit on the face of a 50p is around the right amount.
What should I do if my pasta is boiling over? Turn the heat on the hob down for a while.
Quick Meal Idea: If you fancy a quick lunch, pasta is a great way – why not add some grated cheddar cheese in the colander to create a sticky cheesy pasta lunch!
The best kind of rice to cook is Basmati rice, despite its expense. However Long Grain rice is OK as well. Rice can be quite messy if done incorrectly. For one person add half a cup full of rice to a cup full of water in a pan. Boil this up and once the water starts to boil start the timer. Check your rice regularly to ensure that it hasn’t run out of water and isn’t burning to the bottom of your pan! Once the rice is done take it out, you may find there is still water remaining, you can either remove this by draining the pan into the sink, or by using a seive.
New Potatoes: For new potatoes, place the scrubbed potatoes with skins still on in a large pan of boiling water. They should take around 10 minutes to cook, but check them with a fork to see if they are soft on the inside.
Potato Wedges: Cut up your scrubbed potatoes into wedge shapes, do this by cutting the potato in two, then cutting to where the middle would have been, so you end up with lots of wedges. Cover these wedges in a bit of oil and cook in the oven at around 180 degrees for 10-20 minutes. They should be cooked through and a bit crispy.
Roast Potatoes: Firstly para-boil your potatoes the same way as New Potatoes, but take the skins off this time, then place them on a baking tray cover with a bit of oil and place in the oven for around 20 minutes or until they are crispy.
Mash Potato: As new potatoes only take the skins off this time, once cooked, drain the sauce pan of water, and mash the potato, you can then add a tablespoon of milk, mustard, pepper and a bit of grated cheese to give your mash a bit more flavour! Mash until it is lump less… unless you like lumpy mash of course!
Baked Potatoes: Clean a baking potato, and place in the oven at 180 degrees for about an hour, leave it longer for a crispy skin. You can also do it in the microwave in around 10 minutes, ensure you split the skin in both cases so it doesn’t explode! You can then add whatever filling you want to your potato. Cheese, carrots, beans, tuna, sweetcorn… whatever you like!