Entering the world of flatsharing can be daunting — all these people you’ve never met before and now you’re living side by side with them. So, why not get on their good side early? Impress your new flatmates with some tasty meals (because they’re probably just as sick of eating noodles and pizza as you are). With these four recipes, you will win them over in no time. And, all without breaking the bank or into a sweat.
Sweeten them up
Everybody likes their mama’s pancakes (especially on Candlemas day) but not everybody knows how to make them. Many fall at the first hurdle if they don’t even have kitchen scales to measure out the flour. So, French toast! It’s quick, cheap and mouth-wateringly delicious. The wafts of vanilla will have your flatmates flocking to the kitchen in minutes!
- Bread – about 8 slices
- Eggs – 2
- Milk – 200ml
- Sugar – 1 tbsp.
- A dash of vanilla extract
- A pinch of salt
- Butter – for frying
- Optional – thick cream, maple syrup, yoghurt, fruit compote to serve
Crack the eggs and whisk with the milk, vanilla and sugar. Don’t forget a pinch of salt. Heat up your pan and melt some butter for frying. No cheating here — butter makes all the difference. Dip your bread slices in the mixture and fry until nicely browned. Serve with some thick cream and a dash of maple syrup, or some creamy yogurt and fruit compote. That’s it! You’re a legend!
When you’re feeling a little posh, smoked salmon frittata will fit the bill.
- Eggs – 6
- Milk – 2 tbsp
- Flaked salmon – 60-80g
- Onion – 1 roughly chopped
- Green veg – whatever you have (maybe broccoli, green beans or frozen peas)
To comfortably fill four empty stomachs (or six, if you fancy making a salad too), whisk the eggs with a splash of milk, adding a pinch of salt and pepper to taste. Mix in the flaked salmon (smoked is best). In a pan, fry some chopped onion until soft and throw in some other veggies that you might have lying around — chopped broccoli, green beans or even some frozen peas.
Fry until softened for about 2-3 minutes and then add the egg and salmon mixture, pouring evenly over the veg. Once the base has started to cook, put it all in a 200°C preheated oven and bake for about 10-12 minutes, until the surface has bubbled up and the frittata looks firm. Once cooled, cut it up and serve with some salad leaves with a dash of lemon juice and a few sea salt flakes. “Wows” are guaranteed!
Be the Big Cheese
For an epic night in, beer ‘n burgers work a treat. It’s minimum effort with maximum flavour!
- Ready-made burger patties – at least one per person
- Sliced cheese – one slice per burger
- Bacon rashers – one slice per burger
- Burger buns
- Lettuce, tomatoes and other toppings
Fry the patties, following the instructions on the packet. In another pan, fry (or grill) some bacon. Toast your burger buns and assemble: bun, lettuce, slice of tomato, patty, cheese and bacon. Then have some fun adding red onion rings, gherkin and beetroot slices, pineapple rings, and even a fried egg. Don’t forget to give yourself a big pat on the back. You’re the Big Cheese now.
Wet their appetite
This gnocchi and meatballs tomato bake is perfect for an impressive flatsharing feast on a budget.
Per person (roughly):
- Ready-made meatballs – about 5
- Ready-made gnocchi – 125g
- Tomato sauce – 85g
- Grated cheese to sprinkle on the top
- Fresh basil or parsley to garnish
Fry the meatballs in a pan until lightly and evenly browned (about 5 minutes). Add the tomato sauce, cover and simmer for another 5 minutes. It’s simple cooking ready-made gnocchi so just follow the instructions on the packet. Once cooked, mix the gnocchi in with the meatballs and sauce. Next, sprinkle grated cheese on top and place it under the grill until the mixture starts to bubble and the cheese is beautifully melted. Finally, throw on some chopped herbs. Share the food, keep all the compliments to yourself.
And now for the best bit… you cooked so they have to do the washing up! Sit back and relax.