Nearly 85% of Brits eat Asian food at least once a week.
And with the cost-of-living crisis and half Britain’s families spending more than £20 a week on takeaways, people are in need of cheaper alternatives.
The survey, by Chinese sauce company Lee Kum Kee, also found that a further 59% of Brits said they would cut on takeaways as prices rise if they knew how to cook healthier and more affordable versions of their favourite dishes at home.
So celebrity chef Ken Hom, CBE, has teamed up with the brand to create a list of delicious recipes for less than £5 for a family of four – that’s only £1.20 per person.
Ken Hom said: ‘New research shows that Brits love Asian food and want to spend less, though they can feel intimidated about where to start when it comes to Asian cooking.
‘So, I’ve developed five new seasonal recipes, inspired by Chinese Wisdom, as a healthier and more affordable alternative to takeaways and ready meals, helping you to enjoy bigger flavours for less with Lee Kum Kee.’
Here are a few of the budget-friendly recipes.
Stir-fried Pepper Chicken with Mange-Tout
This dish is so adaptable that any fresh vegetable can be substituted instead of mange-tout, making it the perfect option to use anything that’s going to go out of date.
It takes just ten minutes to cook and 20 minutes to prep and features Lee Kum Kee Premium Light Soy Sauce and Sichuan Style Hot & Spicy Stir Fry Sauce.
- 320g chicken mini breast fillets
- 2 tsp light soy sauce
- 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tsp cornflour
- 1 red/yellow/orange pepper
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 75g mange-tout
- 1 tbsp hot & spicy stir fry sauce
- water and egg noodles
Cut each mini chicken fillet in two or three pieces and place in a bowl. Add the Light Soy Sauce, pepper and cornflour.
Mix well until the chicken is coated in the mixture, then allow to marinade for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, cut the peppers into 2cm thin strips.
Heat wok or large frying pan until it is hot. Add half the oil and when it is very hot and slightly smoking, then add the chicken and stir-fry for 3 minutes.
Use a slotted spoon to transfer the chicken to a plate.
Clean the wok or pan, re-heat it and add the remaining oil. When it is hot, stir-fry the peppers for 2 minutes.
Add the mange tout to the wok and stir-fry for one minute more.
Finally return the chicken to the wok or frying pan, along with the sauce and water, stir -frying to mix everything together.
Serve with fine egg noodles.
Easy Tasty Braised Fish
This dish takes only minutes and uses frozen fish which costs less than fresh.
The total prep and cook time is 20 minutes with just two main ingredients.
- 500g white fish fillets
- 1 spring onion
- 150ml water
- 1tbsp sugar
- 1 tbsp sesame soy sauce
- 2 tsp seasoned rice vinegar
- 1 tsp cornflour
- 1 tbsp grated ginger
- 2 garlic cloves.
Rinse the fish in cold water, then drain and pat dry with kitchen paper. Cut into 5cm pieces.
Trim the spring onion, slicing the white part and finely shredding the green. Put the green into a bowl of cold water, and it will start to curl.
Put the water, sugar, soy Sauce, vinegar and cornflour in a wok or large frying pan and slowly bring to the boil.
Stir in ginger, garlic and white spring onions. Then gently lay the fish fillets on top in a single layer.
Reduce the heat and gently simmer the fish over a low heat for 4-5 minutes, without stirring, until it has turned opaque.
Spoon onto a platter, scatter over the curled green onions, and serve at once with cooked brown rice and tender stem broccoli.
Braised Cauliflower with Oyster Sauce
Cauliflower has a distinct but mild taste that goes well with Lee Kum Kee Premium Oyster Sauce, which gives it a rich savoury flavour.
This meal also only takes 20 minutes from prep to cook time and is easy to prepare and inexpensive too.
- 1 large cauliflower
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 4 garlic cloves
- 1tbsp grated ginger
- 1 tsp light soy sauce
- 4 tbsp of either oyster sauce or vegetarian stir-fry sauce
- 200ml water
- 2 tsp sesame oil
- 2 spring onions
Break the cauliflower into small florets about 4cm wide and discard thick stalks.
Heat wok or large frying pan over high heat until hot. Add oil. When it is very hot and slightly smoking, add garlic and ginger.
Stir-fry for about 20 seconds to flavour oil.
Quickly add the cauliflower florets and stir-fry them for a minute.
Add the two sauces and water, then turn the heat down and simmer for 5-6 minutes or until the cauliflower is tender with a little bite.
Stir in the Sesame Oil and turn onto a warm serving platter.
Sprinkle with spring onions.
You can seek out cheaper supermarket sauce alternatives if you’re on a budget – and remember to buy supermarket own-brand produce to reduce the cost of meals.
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