Sunday 4, June 2023

Cooking one pot meals

Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (Buet) has secured the first position among universities in Bangladesh and ranked 1,589th in the world, according to a ranking published by Webometrics for 2022.

One-pot is a simple cooking method that easily combines all of a dish's essential ingredients in one pot while cooking. This used to be the exclusive domain of bachelors, campers and college students who just moved away from home. Meals were quick, simple and often right out of the box and it nearly always contained a starch, protein and vegetable all rolled into one happy dish. But the concept of one-pot meals actually works for everyday busy scheduled life. Not everyone has time to prepare three different dishes — a starch, protein and vegetable — every night.

Most cultures have their version of the one-pot meal. From Bengali's khichuri to Italian's stir up creamy risotto, the Spanish steam fragrant paella to name but just a few. Versions of this dish span the globe from nearly every ethnicity,the defining factor is in its name: it requires only one pot. That pot may be a wok, an oven, a skillet or tagine, but everything is prepared in that one vessel and the melded flavours combine to produce something extraordinary.

Here are some simple and unique One Pot Meals that are your answer to easy weekday lunch and dinners. Everything cooks in one pot or pan for maximum flavour and minimum clean up! These easy recipes eliminate the need to figure out what sides to cook with your main dish, because each recipe provides your protein, vegetables, and grains in one dish.

One Pan Italian Chicken and Quinoa


1 tbsp olive oil

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 package Button mushrooms

3 chicken breasts, diced

1 red pepper, chopped

1 small red onion, chopped

½ bunch asparagus, chopped

1 zucchini, sliced

1 tbsp Italian seasoning

2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

2 tbsp fresh basil, chopped

½ cup parmesan cheese, grated

2 cups quinoa


Heat olive oil over medium-high heat in a large skillet. Add mushrooms and garlic, sautéing for 5 minutes until liquid starts to release. Add chicken and cook for another 5 minutes until browned. Add Italian seasoning, balsamic vinegar, quinoa and water as much as required to cook quinoa. Place the lid and let quinoa be cooked fully.

Add veggies, cook for another 5-10 minutes until veggies are tender and everything is cooked. Stir in parmesan cheese and basils.

Creamy Chicken Enchilada Casserole


12 pcs tortillas

3 cups chicken shredded

½ cup sweet corn, canned

½ cup of bell pepper, diced

2 tbsp pickled jalapeno

1 tsp onion powder

1 tsp garlic powder

1 sachet of cream of chicken soup powder and water as required ( to make 1 cup of creamy chicken soup)

1 cup mozzarella, grated

1 cup cheddar cheese, grated

½ cup of sour cream or yoghurt

1 tsp paprika

Salt and pepper to taste

Garnish — diced tomato, diced avocado, parsley or cilantro leaves, chopped.


In a large mixing bowl, add sour cream, 1 cup creamy chicken soup, jalapenos, garlic, onion powder, salt and pepper and paprika. Stir with fork to combine.

Grease a baking dish with butter. Lay 6 tortillas for the base. Spread a chicken layer on top of the tortillas, corn, bell pepper, add half of mixed cream sauce, and top with half of mozzarella and cheddar cheese.

Repeat the layers (tortilla, chicken, corn, bell pepper, sauce, cheese).

Bake for 30-35 minutes at 175 Celsius or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.

Garnish and serve with plenty of toppings.

One Pot Winter Braised Potatoes


500g small new potatoes

3-5 small onions, half sliced

3-4 cloves garlic, chopped

2 carrots, cut into thick pieces

1 beetroot, cut into thick pieces

(Long beans, cauliflower, broccoli or any winter vegetable can be used)

500g ground or minced meat

3 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp Worcester sauce

1 tsp tomato puree

375-500ml any flavoured stock

Salt and ground black pepper

2 tsp chopped parsley


Heat a pan over medium flame, add olive oil, chopped garlic and potatoes, sauté until garlic turns brown. Add stock and braise for 5-10 minutes.

Add beetroot, carrot and other vegetable pieces when potatoes are half cooked. Let all the vegetables get tender and add ground meat along with onions, sauces, salt and pepper. Cook until meat gets tender and let oil come out. Sauté for a few minutes.

Transfer into a serving dish and garnish with chopped parsley.

Steamed Banana Leaf Rice Pouch


2 cup aromatic rice

500g prawn (skinless)/boneless chicken (diced)

8-10 bird-eye-chilli/green chilli

3 cloves garlic

1-inch ginger

2 medium size onions, chopped

2 stalk lemongrasses, 1-inch-long pieces

½ cup mushroom

½ cup bell pepper (diced)

½ cup bamboo shoots (boiled/tinned)

8-10 lemon basil/sweet/holy basil leaf

¼ cup oil

½ tsp turmeric powder

Salt to taste

½ to 1 cup water

2 big banana leaves


Clean and soak rice into plain water for 2 hours at least. Take ginger, garlic, chillies, lemongrass into a grinder and grind coarsely. After 2 hours, in a large mixing bowl, add prawn or chicken, rice, onions, garlic-ginger coarse paste, all vegetables, oil, turmeric powder, salt and water. Mix well and marinate for at least 20 minutes.

Take 2 large banana leaves and heat both sides of the leaves over low fire flame carefully to make them soft and flexible. Place one over each into a bowl and place rice prawn mixture over it. After placing marinated content at the centre over the layered leaves, need to fold all edges to make a pouch and tie the leaves carefully with the fibre extracted from banana leaves.

Place the banana pouch over a steamer, cover the lid and steam for one hour on medium flame.

Transfer the banana pouch over a serving dish. Garnish with basil leaves.

Photo and Food: Chiangmi Talukder Lena

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