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No Oven! What to Make When Living in a Foreign Country?

Ylia needs our help! She recently turned to the Kitchen Goddesses in the YumSugar Community for cooking advice. She's planning a special dinner for her boyfriend, but there are some complicated limitations. She explains:

I want a simple yet sophisticated menu... but there's a few limitations such as: no oven in my boyfriend's apartment and I'm a vegetarian. Although I don't want to make it into a whole vegetarian thing, I would like to have something to eat other than just salad and also cook something carnivore for him! To make things even harder I live in Venezuela, a third world country where you don't exactly have the biggest variety of vegetables and other goodies — I've never even seen a shiitake mushroom or ready-to-go chicken or beef broth. Help!

There you have it readers. Ylia needs a basic vegetarian and meat-friendly meal that can be cooked on a stove with simple ingredients. What should she make?!

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ylia ylia 7 years
thankssss so much for all the recipes and ideas!!!!! really a lot of help! i'm gonna start writing all down and put a menu together thanks so much again!
zeze zeze 7 years
Veggie stir-fry with local veggies and herbs over pasta or rice. You can add sauteed chicken/beef to his. Or...faux eggplant parmesan (not fried), or bell peppers stuffed with rice, onion, tomatoes and herbs/spices with a tomato sauce... Make a "different" salad, adding fruit to rich greens (like strawberries or mangoes or pineapple" and nuts. The possibilities of side dishes are endless...I love smashed potatoes (boil small potatoes, toss them whole in olive oil, lay them on a backing sheet and smash them each down and top with salt and pepper. Good luck and don't be afraid to try something different, honestly cooking is all about being creative and making what you have work for you rather than the other way around.
laaki laaki 7 years
I'm also from Venezuela, and Yes you can find this time in many supermarkets, may be you are not looking at the rights one, what city do you live in? since I have lived in many city over the past 2 years I may be able to help you find the right supermarket. In Caracas you can get lot of veggies including the shiitake mushroom in Plaza's, Luvebras, and Gama, even in some Central Madairense like the one in chacaito. if you're in Puerto La Cruz you can find them in Le Marche, Sigo la Proveeduria and Unicasa in the Plaza Mayor mall....
Spectra Spectra 7 years
If you can get rice, try making a rice pilaf with whatever veggies you can find. And for your boyfriend, you could maybe find some chicken and do a stovetop braise: brown your chicken, deglaze your pan with some wine or stock, put your chicken back in and simmer it until it's done. I make a really yummy braised chicken thigh dish that I serve over plain buttered noodles for my husband a lot. Also, you could maybe make fajitas--you can make veggie ones for you and add some steak, chicken, or fish for your guy. Those are fairly easy to do on the stove, too.
Food Food 7 years
If you're looking for something non-vegetarian for him, how about a fish or shellfish ceviche? That is "cooked" but doesn't require a stove. :)
chiefdishwasher chiefdishwasher 7 years
Got pasta?.......saute your favorite veggies in a frying pan in a little olive oil......toss with the pasta........make his special by using butter while you saute his chicken pieces in a separate pan....toss his pasta separately with an extra dollop of butter and shred a little parmesean over his!......or substitute prawns for the chicken!.......ready in minutes!
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