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Easy-Cheesy Lunch

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Happy new year!
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I’ve been adjusting to graduate school and not posting much because, well, mostly everything I eat is boring. I cook quick easy ordinary things for myself. But in a recent conversation I realized that quick easy things to cook for yourself are pretty handy, and recipes us fresh out of college folk don’t necessarily have mastered yet.

So! Let’s start with my favorite thing to bring for lunch recently: warm, tasty, healthy, and easy to pull together

. Its really fast if you have some leftover rice, but if you don’t, use my super-quick rice short cuts for 1/3 cup dry rice and 2/3 cup water and your lunch will be in your backpack* in twenty minutes. (can’t make rice? got you covered)

*or messenger bag, lunch sack, briefcase….
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Cheesy Broccoli Rice lunch

note: measurements are approximate here, just to give you an idea. feel free to adapt to your tastes. I always err on the side of cheese, feel free to cut back a bit if thats not your thing. likewise with the broccoli. Hungry? make more. Add in any spices or herbs that suit your fancy.ย  you get the picture ๐Ÿ™‚

note: this assumes you have access to a microwave where you eat lunch. if you don’t, try heating it before and putting it in a thermos, or just having it at room temperature. ALSO! While this makes a very convenient packed lunch, there is no reason you can’t have it at home, just heat whenever you’re ready to eat it ๐Ÿ™‚

1 cup cooked rice1/4 cup frozen chopped broccoli (broccoli cuts if you like things chunkier)
2 oz cheese (~5 slices off a block or 1/3 cup grated), cheddar or anything you like, feel free to use multiple types
splash of milk or cream, or dollop of sour cream or plain yogurt, optional*
black pepper, to taste
*It will be a bit more creamy/like a sauce if you put in dairy, but its just fine without it too. If your Tupperware leaks, I’d recommend skipping it or using the sourcream or yogurt option.

-Into a 2-3 cup microwaveable tupperware container (or bowl if you’re eating immediately), put the sour cream/yogurt (if using) broccoli, rice, and cheese. It doesn’t matter if your cheese is grated or in chunks, but nestle chunks into the rice. Don’t worry about stirring stuff together, it will be just fine.
-Add a splash of milk/cream (if using) and sprinkle or grind pepper over the top. (I highly recommend this step; I always miss the pepper when I forget it).

-Pop on the lid and your lunch is packed! Refrigerate until you’re ready to leave. (or make immediately)

When ready to eat:
-Remove the lid.
-Microwave for 2 minutes, stir, then in 1 minute intervals, stirring between, until cheese is melted, broccoli is hot, and milk(if using) starts to bubble.

PS. Christmas bonus: the siblings and I made paper snowflakes while I was home for the holidays. Enjoy!
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