The Neopian Cookbook: Health Food Edition
The Health Food Shop in Neopia Central is filled with delicious and nutritious food that can be replicated in your own kitchen, provided you have the time and equipment to do so. I picked a few of my favourites to share. First things first, be sure to ask an adult to help with knives and the stove, and don’t’ forget to make any substitutions if anyone who will be eating the food has any allergies or intolerances. Bon apetit!
Oatmeal is a delicious and healthy way to start the day. Shake things up by trying out the apple version. Keep in mind that oats aren’t considered gluten-free, if that’s your thing, but you could use quinoa flakes instead.
- 4 apples, cored
- 1 cup steal-cut oats (use quinoa flakes for gluten-free alternative, but note that cooking times will change)
- 4 cups water
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar (substitute with other sweeteners if desired, such as applesauce, natvia, coconut nectar or omit)
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- pinch of salt
- yoghurt to serve, if desired (try greek or coconut yoghurt)
1. Shred two of the apples using a grater.
2. Heat a saucepan over a medium heat. Add the oats to the pan and cook for 2 minutes until lightly toasted. Be sure to stir!
3. Add the water and shredded apples to the pan and bring to a boil.
4. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes, stirring frequently.
5. Chop the remaining two apples into small pieces while the mix cooks.
6. Stir the chopped apples, sugar, cinnamon, and salt into the pan. Stir occasionally, until the apples are tender and the oatmeal is thick. This could be for 15 to 20 minutes. Divide into 4 bowls, or a bowl and a container for leftovers and serve with yoghurt, if desired.
This is a delicious salad that is also great side dish. It’s also a great choice for lunches at work or school as it is best served cold or at room temperature, so there is no need to try and find a way to heat it up. To turn it into a main, add some protein. I recommend chicken or tofu but even some spicy chorizo would go nicely.
- 3 -4 cobs of corn
- 1 small red onion, diced
- 1/2 cup freshly chopped basil leaves
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1. In a large pot of water, cook the corn for 3 minutes, or until the starchiness is gone. Drain the pot and place the corn in ice water to stop it from cooking and make sure the bright colour doesn’t change. Once cool cut the kernels from the cob.
2. Toss the kernels in a bowl with the other ingredients. Serve cold or at room temperature.
Grilled Veggie Bowl
Grilled vegetables are delicious and make a great lunch, especially if you would prefer not to eat meat. Pick and choose the vegetables based on what you like. If you’d prefer not to grill, consider roasting the vegetables, but it will completely change the dish, though it would still be delicious. Add some protein if you’d like to boost the meal even more.
- Your choice of vegetables
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- salt and pepper
- 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 2 minced garlic cloves
- freshly chopped herbs of choice (I recommend basil, parsley, and rosemary, but pick your favourites)
Veggies and cook times
- Red capsicum (bell peppers), seeded and chopped – 8 to 10 minutes
- zucchini, sliced lengthways – 7 minutes
- mushrooms of choice – 7 minutes
- asparagus, trimmed – 4 minutes
- small eggplant, sliced lengthways – 7 minutes
- green onions (also known as scallions) – 4 minutes
1. Put the grill over a medium high heat and brush the vegetables with 1/4 cup of oil to coat lightly. Sprinkle the vegetables with salt and pepper.
2. Grill the vegetables in batches for the times above, or until tender and lightly charred all over. To get grill marks, try not to shift the vegetables frequently.
3. Wisk remaining oil, vinegar, garlic, and herbs in a bowl until combined, and add salt and pepper to taste. Place vegetables in a bowl and drizzle the herb mixture over the top.
4. Serve warm or at rom temperature.
Tomato Basil Salad
This is a yummy salad that is perfect for lunch, either on it’s own, or on the side with chicken. This is easy to change up with other things you like. Try adding some avocado or mozzarella to change the flavour a little.
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 punnets of baby roma tomatoes, quartered (substitute with equivalent of other preferred tomatoes)
- 1/4 cup freshly chopped basil
- 1 small red onion, chopped finely
1. Place all ingredients, except the basil, in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Toss gently and cover. Set aside for two hours for the flavours to combine.
2. Add basil and toss to combine.
3. Serve cold or at room temperature.
Parsley is ridiculously good for you, but it can be more than a little unpalatable to try and eat a few bunches of it in a day, but quite pleasant to drink just one glass, and you get all the benefits. Unlike some of the other recipes, you’re going to need a juicer for this, though you could replicate it with a blender, as long as you don’t mind a little extra pulp.
- 2 bunches of parsley
- ginger, peeled
- half a lemon
- 2 green apples, cored and cut into pieces
1. Rinse the parsley thoroughly to ensure that it is clean. C
2. Place the parsley in the chute of your juicer and operate it. The general rule is to start with soft fruits and vegetables before moving onto the harder ones.
3. If you want to reduce the pulp, pour juice through a strainer.
4. Drink your delicious parsley juice fresh. If storing, be sure to do so in an airtight glass container.
That brings the Health Food Edition of the Neopian Cookbook to a close. What will be next? Who knows! No matter what is next, we know it will definitely be delicious!