Yesterday was Day 1 of our challenge. Here’s our log.

ERIC SHARES THE SPOILS

I did some prep the night before and was worried about timing, especially in the morning. When I started to cook, I clocked my time and I am happy to report that breakfast and lunch took just 45 minutes to make.

I also realised that having ingredients shared between the meals really helped speed up the process.

For breakfast I made high-protein flatbread (chapati). The dough was done last night and left in the fridge, so this morning it was just a matter of shaping them and toasting them with a little olive oil over low flame. I also had scrambled eggs (with a sprinkle of flaxseed), half a grilled tomato, carrot sticks and an apple. It was very filling!

Lunch was a simple salad of baby romaine lettuce, cubed tomato and carrots (leftovers from breakfast). The salad was topped off with Parmesan and mozzarella cheese. I set aside the balsamic vinegar and olive oil until it was time to dress the salad. For some carbs, I had a small serving of pasta with just pepper, olive oil, chilli flakes and ground peanuts.

Dinner was easy enough and only took half an hour. I blanched some broccoli and bok choy, and steamed some lean minced pork topped with egg. The meat was prepared last night so all I had to do was add a pinch of salt, a little pepper, chicken stock for a little liquid and a dash of Chinese rice wine before steaming it in the wok.

3 meals a day challenge

The meals took less time than Eric had thought, a nice surprise.

MELODY KEEPS IT SIMPLE

This week, my work schedule technically starts before 7am so preparing breakfast and lunch early in the morning would be my biggest challenge. I figured I would be allowed to cheat just a little bit…

My Day 1 menu began with an omelette with nutritional yeast for breakfast. Yes, it’s easy but it’s also quite a flavourful and filling meal – plus, it’s vegetarian! Nutritional yeast is deactivated yeast that’s savoury and kind of cheesy. Vegans and vegetarians have been adding it to their food for years, but it only recently made it on the trendy food list.

For lunch I made another simple item – a creamy Greek yoghurt tuna sandwich. I didn’t bake the bread, I didn’t catch the tuna and I certainly didn’t make the yoghurt. But it was a quick and healthy option; I’m not a big fan of mayonnaise and substituting that with the Greek yoghurt (which is currently “in”) makes for a more delicious filling I think.

I cheated the most for dinner, which was a bowl of bone broth poured over glass noodles. Bone broth is a big deal these days and takes at least 24 hours to make. Which is great for us working folks as all you need to do is dump everything in your slow cooker at night and you’d have a meal ready for the next night. I opted for the local version of the broth aka “sup tulang”.

Meals

Monday is cheat day for Melody.

JANE TURNS BROWN UPSIDE DOWN

My theme is “colour” and yesterday I chose to prepare foods in the white/brown group, which includes items like mushrooms, potatoes, garlic, shallots and bananas. (If only my options included three forms of chocolate!)

I am an early riser so I almost always have breakfast – I make at least one type of bread every week and so I will have toast at least (although I prefer breakfast pastries). This weekend, I made Portuguese corn bread but used the last two slices of homemade whole wheat bread from the previous loaf instead – toasted and spread with homemade peanut butter and Marmite (store-bought, of course). You don’t get browner than that!

Lunch was day-old rice fried with crispy ikan bilis, baby kailan and an egg. At the end, I tossed in a handful of bean sprouts. I seasoned the dish with less soya sauce than I usually do since I need to cut down on my salt intake, but threw a couple of bird’s eye chillies into my container to add flavour. The rice was no longer warm at lunch time, but I was glad the bean sprouts remained crunchy.

In the morning, I had poached a meaty chicken rib with carrots and onions. Lunch is usually my main meal and I tend to eat well and a little later in the afternoon, which leaves me still full at dinnertime. I also go to bed early, and don’t like to eat late at night, but since I can’t skip dinner during this challenge, I decided I would have light soups this week. I was going to have the chicken broth, along with a few shreds of chicken and spinach leaves, for dinner. But the traffic was so bad that I didn’t get home until after 9pm, and I wasn’t in any mood to heat up soup. I’ll keep it for another meal.

Jane is pleased with her brown breakfast and lunch.

Jane is pleased with her white and brown meals.

Read our Day 2 log