Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Picture That: Illustrators on food 2: Beattie Alvarez

Today, I'm featuring gorgeous illustrations and a yummy easy recipe by Beattie Alvarez, young multi-talented illustrator, author, editor, toymaker, mother of two lively children--and passionate reader! She is also one of the team at Christmas Press Picture Books and at the gorgeous toyshop, Granny Fi's Toy Cupboard.

Mi Goreng for the busy reader
by Beattie Alvarez

Too busy reading a book to do the shopping? Just got to the exciting part and don’t want to stop for long, but your tummy is grumbling? Want something hot, simple, and delicious to eat while you’re reading your book?
I have the perfect recipe for you!
Mi Goreng!
Most people have had this delicious noodle concoction, a favourite with students and people on a budget. They’re cheap, quick, and yummy. Most people have also gone to the cupboard in their hour of hunger only to discover that they have RUN OUT! Oh, the horror!
This happened to me yesterday.
It was a quiet afternoon and I was happily reading Harry Potter in the sun when I realised that I was drooling on it as I read about the fantastic feasts. NOT GOOD. Being the day before payday, my pantry was looking sad. What could I make that was warm and cosy and QUICK? I didn’t want to put down Harry for too long.
I found two sad looking spring onions, half a Spanish onion, tomato sauce, and manis (sweet soy sauce). And a ten pack of dry two-minute noodles.
Five minutes later (I kid you not!) Harry was safely tucked under the edge of my bowl as I wolfed down my meal. To be fair, mi goreng is not ideal for eating with Harry Potter. What you need with Harry are pies and puddings, cakes and sweets, hot chocolate, baked potatoes, and all those other fabulously English things. However, my meal was perfectly adequate and (with the right book) would have been perfect! 

1 tbsp sweet soy sauce (manis – available from most supermarkets in the Asian food aisle).
1 tbsp tomato sauce
pepper – I used a lot, but some people would prefer less. Start with half a teaspoon and go from there.
Onions of some description
3 packets of dry noodles
soy sauce to taste
egg (optional)

1.      Pick your favourite book. Get it ready for later.
2.      Mix tomato sauce, pepper, and sweet soy sauce in a bowl.
3.      Boil and drain your noodles
4.      Finely chop, and then fry your onions in the oil until they are nice and crispy, but not burnt.
5.      (optional) poach or fry your egg
6.      Turn the heat off, throw everything into the frying pan and mix, adding soy sauce to taste.
7.      (optional, but advised) transfer to plate or bowl.
8.      Open your book and read while eating.
9.      Go back for seconds if necessary.
 NB. All quantities are approximate and to my taste. I don’t like things very saucy (read want you will into that statement!), so I used three packets of noodles. Some people would only use two. I also like quite sweet savoury dishes. If you prefer salty, then add more soy sauce or lessen the amounts of Manis and tomato sauce. And if you aren’t kissing someone later, fried garlic works well too. 


  1. That sounds like my kind of dish! I don't keep two minute noodles but other kinds I usually have in the pantry. They're great in a stir fry(my favourite when I want to get on with rereading Harry Potter). I do agree about the appropriate food for reading J.K Rowling, but as we have no house elves to cook them fir us...

  2. PS I love the art! A lady Of many talents!