This may sound strange, but I have never had an office based job which involves having to go out and buy my own lunch. I have always worked in the food industry so my lunches have always been provided for.
There is an exception to that rule, dating back to my late teen years when I worked at both Harrods and Harvey Nichols during the summer sales. But I do seem to remember them both having a very nice staff canteen.
If I do happen to be out and about for lunch, I am always struck by how expensive it is to enjoy a half decent lunch. This is partly due to me being resentful for having to pay around about a fiver to eat a pre-made sandwich/salad and partly because I know I can make something far tastier and nutritious myself. I could however happily live on the Leon superfood salad if push came to shove.
My work as a cookery tutor enables me to eat my lunch at home, but if I am teaching in the afternoon then I often get to work early and eat there. Lunchtime for me is either about soup and bread (both home-made) or when out and about, a salad. Either way, both get made by using up whatever is left lurking in the fridge from the week before. I also cannot abide waste which is often a key feature of my cookery lessons.
I have created a roasted pork & aubergine noodle salad here which uses up leftover roast pork in a way that is so tasty you will be looking forward to your leftovers as much as you do your Sunday roast. This recipe is part of “Leftover Lunches”, a campaign by VOUCHER CODES to get us creative with what we eat at lunchtime. The challenge was to come up with a dish for under £10 which could see you through a couple of days worth of tasty lunchtime treats.
My leftovers salad will happily see you through two generous days worth of salad munching and the joy of using pork shoulder meat is that it does not dry out and it is much cheaper to buy and roast than a pork loin. I also chose a pork shoulder from our excellent local butcher, that was still on the bone which kept the meat beautifully tender and soft after spending 4 and 1/2 hours cooking gently in the oven.
This is what the salad for 2 days cost to make, for two very generous portions:
Leftover pork meat-£5
2 nests of dried egg noodles -35p
1/2 bag beansprouts-40p
1 red chilli-15p
4 spring onions-40p
Gran Luchito smoked Mexican chilli honey-15p
Total cost £8.85
Voucher Codes commissioned me to create a recipe for their #LeftoverLunches campaign. I was paid for my time and the ingredients used to create this recipe.
Roasted pork & aubergine noodle salad with ginger dressing
- For the salad 🙂
- Leftover roast pork chopped up roughly
- 350 g Cooked noodles
- 1 Aubergine
- 1 tsp -1tsp Gran Luchito smoked chilli honey or 1 tsp honey and some red chilli flakes
- -Sunflower oil for roasting the aubergine
- 1/2 packet Beansprouts
- 1 bunch Coriander roughly chopped
- For the ginger dressing 🙂
- 1 tbsp Sesame oil
- 3 tbsp Sunflower/groundnut oil
- 1 tbsp Balsamic vinegar
- 2 tbsp Dark soy sauce
- 1 Red chilli finely chopped
- 4 Spring onions finely sliced
- 1 inch Ginger peeled and grated
- 1/2 Lime zest & juice
- For the salad 🙂
Pre-cook the noodles and run them under cold water to cool,
Chop the aubergine into long chunks, coat them in oil and roast in a pre-heated oven (200 degrees) for 30 minutes,
Drizzle over the honey and some salt when the aubergine is cooked and still warm,
Place the cold noodles into a mixing bowl and coat with the ginger dressing (see below) the night before you want to eat your salad. Add the other ingredients in the morning before work.
- For the dressing 🙂
Place all the ingredients for the ginger dressing into a jug and mix thoroughly,
Add the dressing to the cold noodles and leave them to marinate over night before you add the remaining salad ingredients.
- For the finished salad 🙂
Once the noodles have been marinated in the dressing overnight, add in your chopped up leftover roast pork, roasted aubergines, bean sprouts and chopped coriander. Only add in enough pork, aubergine & beansprouts for one lunch. Add in the remainders for day two of this salad. This will prevent the meat and veg from deteriorating in the dressing,
Check for seasoning and add salt and pepper if needed,
Stir the salad and place into a container/lunchbox ready to take to work.
You could make up enough salad for 2 people and offer some to a friend. They could then return the flavour and make you lunch the next day!