Back when microwave ovens were the newest modern appliance, there were scores of recipes for microwave meals. These days, most people use the microwave for simple tasks such as reheating, popping popcorn or heating a cup of water.
But the microwave can do so much more and save you time and energy. These recipes showcase the versatility of the microwave: use leftover rice to make "fried rice," prepare Chinese-style steamed fish using locally farm-raised moi and stir up a quick snack using breakfast cereal.
The USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service has several food safety tips relating to the microwave. Visit www.fsis.usda.gov and click on "fact sheets."
1/4 cup sugar
1-1/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 cup butter or margarine
4 cups Crispix cereal
Combine sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl; set aside.
Place butter in medium-size microwave-safe bowl, melt on high for 50 seconds or until melted. Add cereal, stirring to coat. Cook again on high power for 2 minutes, stirring after the first minute.
Sprinkle half of sugar mixture over cereal; stir well.
Sprinkle with remaining sugar. Cook again on high for 1 minute. Spread onto a flat baking sheet to cool, stirring to help cooling process. Serves 4.
Approximate nutritional information, per 1 cup serving: 260 calories, 12 g fat, 7 g saturated fat, 30 mg cholesterol, 300 mg sodium, 38 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 16 g sugar, 2 g protein
3 slices bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 cup diced luncheon meat or ham
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup slivered water chestnuts
2 tablespoons shoyu
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
3 cups cooked rice
2 eggs, beaten
2 stalks green onion, sliced thin
Microwave bacon in covered 3-quart casserole dish on high for 3 1/2 to 4 minutes.
Add remaining ingredients except eggs and green onion. Cover and microwave on high for 4 to 6 minutes until mixture is heated thoroughly. Stir in beaten eggs. Cover and let stand 3 minutes.
Toss in green onions and serve. Serves 6.
Approximate nutritional information, per serving: 250 calories, 9 g fat, 3 g saturated fat, 90 mg cholesterol, 800 mg sodium, 31 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 2 g sugar, 10 g protein
1 tablespoon peanut or vegetable oil
2 teaspoons shoyu
1/4 teaspoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon sugar
1 pound moi
1 stalk green onion, sliced
1-inch piece fresh ginger, slivered
1 tablespoon slivered chung choy (Chinese salted turnip)
Combine oil, shoyu, cornstarch and sugar in microwave-safe dish. Sprinkle fish with salt and marinate in sauce for about 15 minutes.
Sprinkle green onions, ginger and chung choy over fish. Cover dish with microwave-safe cover or microwave-safe wrap; microwave on high for 4 minutes or until done.
Let stand 3 minutes before serving. Serves 2.
Note: Cooking time for 2 fish is 6 minutes.
Approximate nutritional information, per serving (not including sprinkled salt): 300 calories, 9 g fat, 2 g saturated fat, 95 mg cholesterol, 500 mg sodium, 4 g carbohydrate, 0 g fiber, 3 g sugar, 51 g protein
For more Hawaiian Electric Co. recipes, visit www.heco.com.