Sunday’s whilst generally recovery days after the frivolities that Saturday nights inevitably bring, they’re also prep days for me. With a little bit of time and effort, my husband’s lunches are ready for the whole week and it’s one less thing to worry about day-to-day. He’s graduated from his quinoa biscuits to baked bean casserole. Baked bean casserole became a common dinner dish when we were saving to go on a 2 month trip to the US around 6 years ago. Back then, the only late night shopping was Thursdays, so we’d spend our night grocery shopping and fix a baked bean casserole in 10-15 minutes when we got home, then cook it in the microwave while we unpacked the bags. It was a super cheap, but highly nutritious meal and really tasty. It evolves constantly, depending on what we have in the house. Leftover roast veges are common elements, as is any type of leftover meat. The grain can be changed out too. Quinoa or buckwheat can take place of the rice. Or you can leave that out altogether if you aren’t feeling it.
The recipe below is one of the most common combinations when making it from scratch for lunches. I divide this up into 5x 500mL plastic containers that Lance then cooks in the microwave at work for around 4 minutes on high and eats with corn thins. When I take one to work, I usually have it with some rye toast.
Baked Bean Casserole1 425g tin baked beans
1 400g tin chick peas, rinsed
2/3 cup passata
1 heaped tsp smoked paprika
1 tbsp mixed Italian herbs
1 cup capsicum, finely diced
1 cup mushrooms, finely diced
1 cup zucchini, finely diced
1 cup roma tomato, finely diced
1 cooked sausage, finely diced
1 large red onion, diced
1 tbsp olive oil
½ tsp salt
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 cup brown rice, rinsed
2 ¼ cups water
Put the brown rice and water in a large glass bowl and microwave on high for 24 minutes. Set aside to cool
Heat the olive oil in a frypan to medium heat and add the onion and salt. Fry for 5-10 minutes until translucent and then add the balsamic and garlic. Cook for a further 5 minutes until caramelized and then take off the heat and allow to cool.
Dice all the vegetables. You want them as small as the baked beans, or smaller. Dice the cooked sausage as small as this as well. Stir together all of the vegetables, the cooled onion mixture, sausages, baked beans and chick peas. Mix the paprika, herbs and passata together, then mix into the rest of the mixture. Finally add the cooled rice and mix very thoroughly. You want it to be completely mixed up.
Divide the casserole into individual containers, then store in the fridge ready for lunch throughout the week.
When ready to serve, microwave for 4 minutes to heat the casserole and cook the vegetables. Serve with corn thins, corn chips or hot toast