Since I’m in medical school, my time is pretty occupied with studying, especially when I have an upcoming test, which is pretty much all the time. This semester started out kind of slow, but now it’s picking up speed and my free time to explore new recipes and exercise is dwindling. We had two tests today and I had plans to go out of town this weekend so I knew I would need quick and easy recipes so that I could spend more time studying. It’s also important to keep active even when you’re busy. I didn’t get to work out as much as I would have liked this past week, but I made sure to make time for at least two workouts of about 30 minutes. While it’s optimal to work out at least three times a week, working out twice a week is better than not working out at all. Here are a couple of the dinners from my week.
I love a fresh margarita pizza! Basil, tomatoes and mozzarella cheese go together so well. This summer, I learned an easy and quick way to make a personal pizza that tastes great. All you need is a bag of tortillas, tomatoes, and mozzarella cheese. Previously I have used the normal white flour tortillas, but this time I used a smaller size and whole wheat. You could use whatever you have at home or whatever looks enticing at the grocery store, it’s really up to you. The same idea works for the tomatoes and cheese too, I used cherry tomatoes and an italian cheese blend since I already had it in the fridge, but you can use whatever you like best and add other veggies or herbs that you like as well. As for the instructions, I preheat the oven to about 350 and let my tortilla get a little crispy as the oven heats up. While you wait on that, you can slice your tomatoes and herbs. I take the tortilla out once it’s gotten a little crispy, this usually takes 6-8 minutes. Next, just sprinkle on your cheese, tomatoes and basil. Place it back in the oven until the cheese melts and your ready to eat! This meal is super easy and surprisingly filling. I suspect it would be great for families with picky eaters, kids can add whatever they want and even make it themselves. Clean up is easy too, especially when you use a paper plate like I did.
Another easy option for dinner when you are super busy is frozen fish. I try to keep a couple fillets of fish in the freezer for those days when I’m feeling lazy but still want a good dinner. Each time I go to the store I look at their fresh fish selection; if they have some that looks good and is relatively inexpensive, I’ll bring it home and freeze it. This way you can pull it out of the freezer and bake it in the oven for about 30 minutes. Lately I’ve been using cod, which I find to be light and flavorful at the same time. I’ve also used flounder, tilapia and salmon. When making any of these I just add some olive oil on the top of the fish and sprinkle it with a lemon pepper and a garlic and herb seasoning mix. Then, I just bake it in the oven for 20-30 minutes. Usually fish is done when it flakes with a fork. Different fishes may be different though, so just look it up online if you aren’t sure. If you are watching your sodium intake, be careful of what seasonings you choose to add, they make lots of low or no sodium options now, so try one of those out! To accompany my fish, I normally cook some frozen vegetables that I keep on hand in the freezer, and make a small salad. That’s pretty much it! Keeping things in the freezer makes things a lot easier when you have a busy schedule, it’s definitely made staying healthy on a busy schedule feasible for me.