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Monday, August 8, 2011

Recipe from a reader

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Here is a recipe that was sent to me as a comment – thanks, Anonymous! I haven’t had a chance to try it myself yet but thought I should edit and post it here anyway. We can all do with new disguises for chicken! Enjoy.

Hi all at abloggerscookbook.blogspot.com.


Here’s a chicken recipe for you all. What do you think?
Apple brandy chicken
Ingredients:
4 chicken breast halves
8 ounces sliced mushrooms
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 teaspoons butter
1/3 cup apple brandy, such as Apple Jack or Calvados
4 green onions, chopped
1/2 cup whipping cream or heavy cream
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves or 1/4 teaspoon dried leaf thyme


Preparation:
Flatten chicken; place chicken breast halves between pieces of plastic wrap and gently pound until thinned out and uniform in size.
Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
In a large heavy skillet, heat olive oil and butter over medium heat. Add chicken breasts.
Cook for about 5 minutes, until browned, then turn.
Add mushrooms and cook for about 5 minutes longer.
Add green onions and apple brandy and cook for another minute, until chicken is cooked through and mushrooms are tender.
Add cream and thyme; simmer until thickened.
Taste and add salt and pepper if needed.


See more at http://freerecipesforchicken.info/

Monday, July 11, 2011

And now the work begins...

I have been sharing my recipes with you for the last 78 weeks (390 recipes, plus a few extras), I do hope that you have tried some of them. I have updated all the recipe collections (link buttons on the right), but now the real work begins. Currently I am calculating the nutritional information for each recipe, and trying to pull all my writings and recipes into a cohesive package so that maybe I can get published.

Please continue to visit and browse through the recipes posted here. Thank you to everyone who has visited and left comments, I really appreciate you taking the time.

I wish you healthy eating.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Week 78 Day 5

Pork ‘n’ beans
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
½ tsp crushed garlic
1 onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, finely sliced
1 tsp ground coriander
400gm pork fillet, cut in chunks
1 x 400gm tin chopped tomatoes
2 Tblsp tomato paste
1 x 400gm tin mixed beans, rinsed and drained
1 green pepper, chopped
4 naan breads, toasted and cut in fingers

Method
Spray a large pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Dry fry the onion, garlic and celery for 5 minutes.
Add the coriander and meat.
Cook, stirring, until the meat is sealed and the onion is beginning to brown.
Now add the tomatoes and paste.
Stir well, cover and simmer for 15 minutes.

Add the beans and simmer for another 5 minutes.

Serve with the naan fingers.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Week 78 Day 4

Fish balti
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
600gm white fish, cut in chunks
1 onion, finely chopped
½ tsp crushed garlic
1 red chilli, finely chopped
2 tsp crushed ginger
2 tsp ground turmeric
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp sweet paprika
1 x 400gm tin chopped tomatoes
30ml fat free dried milk powder
60ml water
2 Tblsp chopped coriander
1 Tblsp chopped mint
4 Tblsp fat free plain yoghurt
320gm basmati rice

Method
Cook the rice in water (or chicken stock).
Once cooked, drain and keep warm.

Spray a large pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Dry fry the onion, garlic, chilli and ginger for 3 – 4 minutes.
Add the turmeric, cumin and paprika and cook for another minute.

Mix the milk powder to a paste with the water and add to the pan.
Tip in the tomatoes and stir well.
Nestle the fish chunks in the sauce.
Cover and simmer for 5 minutes.
Stir through the fresh coriander and mint.

Serve the balti on the rice, topped with yoghurt.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Week 78 Day 3

Chilly night chicken
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
3 skinless chicken breast fillets,
     cut into bite size pieces
½ Tblsp rice wine vinegar
1 onion, sliced
1 stalk celery, sliced
1 leek, sliced
1 parsnip, sliced
2 carrots, sliced
3 courgettes, sliced
1 cup frozen peas
250ml chicken stock
1 Tblsp cornflour, mixed to a paste with 2 Tblsp water

300gm mashing potatoes
200gm orange-fleshed sweet potatoes

Method
Cut the potatoes into chunks and cook in lightly salted water.
Once they are cooked, drain well and mash.
Keep warm.

Sprinkle the vinegar over the cut up chicken.
Spray a large saucepan with non-stick cooking spray.
Dry fry the onion, celery and leeks until the onion softens.
Now add the chicken and stir fry until it is ‘sealed’.

Tip the parsnip, carrot and courgettes into the saucepan.
Stir while pouring in the stock.
Cover and simmer for 15 minutes.
Add the peas and the cornflour.
Cook for another 5 minutes, stirring, until the sauce has thickened.

Serve the chicken over the mash.

If you need extra warming, add ½ tsp chilli paste with the stock.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Week 78 Day 2

Basil ratatouille with pasta
Serves 4 : Very easy : Very quick
Ingredients
240gm pasta shells
1 onion, thinly sliced
1 tsp crushed garlic (optional)
1 large aubergine, chopped
4 courgettes, sliced
1 green pepper, chopped
1 x 400gm can chopped tomatoes
½ cup water (or veg stock)
½ cup dry red wine
2 Tblsp tomato paste

3 Tblsp chopped fresh basil

4 basil sprigs
4 tsp grated parmesan

Method
Cook the pasta in plenty of lightly salted water until al dente.
Drain and keep warm.

Spray a large sauce pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Dry fry the onion and garlic until the onion is soft and is beginning to colour.
Tip in the aubergine, courgettes and pepper and stir fry for 5 minutes.
Now add the tomatoes, water, wine and tomato paste.
Stir well, cover and simmer for 15 minutes.
Stir through the chopped basil and the cooked pasta shells.

Serve garnished with fresh basil sprigs and parmesan.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Week 78 Day 1

Angelfish with green beans
Serves 4 : Very easy : Takes a little longer
Ingredients
4 angelfish fillets
Black pepper

400gm green beans
½ cup dried yellow split peas
500gm mashing potatoes
10gm butter

2 Tblsp lemon juice
½ tsp crushed garlic
1 Tblsp olive oil

4 tsp Hellmann’s low fat mayo
Chopped parsley

Method
Start the split peas in cold, unsalted water.
Simmer for 30 – 40 minutes until soft.
Drain and keep warm.

Cook the potatoes in lightly salted water (start in cold water*).
Drain well and mash with the butter.
Keep warm.

Steam the beans for 10 minutes.
Drain and dress with the lemon juice, garlic and olive oil.
Keep warm.

Spray a large frying pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Dry fry the fish, presentation side down, for 5 minutes.
Turn and continue cooking for another 5 minutes, or until the fish flakes easily.
Do not overcook or the fish will be dry.

Serve the angelfish with the mash, beans and split peas.
Garnish with low fat mayo and chopped parsley.

*Always start potatoes and pulses in cold water. Hot water will cook the outside of potatoes to a mush before the inside is done; pulses will stay hard and tough if the cooking water is started hot or salted.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Link to .pdf file for Week 78

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Go here for the recipes and shopping list for Week 78.
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Week 77 Day 5

One pot casserole
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
3 skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite size pieces
1 red onion, chopped
1 Dstsp Patak’s korma curry paste
4 courgettes, sliced
3 carrots, sliced
200gm green beans, cut in ±2cm pieces
1 red pepper, chopped
750ml chicken stock
½ white cabbage, shredded
2 Tblsp chopped coriander

320gm rice
4 Tblsp fat free natural yoghurt
4 tsp sweet chilli sauce

Method
Cook the rice in lightly salted water.
Once cooked, drain and keep warm.

Spray a large saucepan with non-stick cooking spray.
Dry fry the onion until it starts to soften.
Add the chicken and continue frying until it is sealed and starting to brown.
Now stir through the curry paste and continue cooking for a few minutes more.

Add the courgettes, carrots, beans, pepper and stock.
Cover and simmer for 20 minutes.
Add the cabbage and 1Tblsp coriander and simmer for 5 minutes.

Serve over the rice.
Garnish with the yoghurt, sweet chilli sauce and the remaining coriander.

Even though there is curry paste in the recipe, the flavor is mild enough for children.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Week 77 Day 4

Warm pasta salad
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
280gm penne pasta

½ cup Hellmann’s low fat mayo
2 Tblsp wholegrain mustard
1 Tblsp fat free natural yoghurt
1 Tblsp lemon juice
½ cup sundried raisin tomatoes in oil
½ red onion, finely chopped
1 tsp crushed garlic
12 black olives, chopped
200gm wild rocket, chiffonade

Method
Rinse the raisin tomatoes well and put to soak in hot water while you:
Prepare and combine all the other ingredients, except the pasta.
Drain the tomatoes and chop.
Add these to the sauce.

Cook the pasta in plenty of water until al dente.
Drain, reserving 2 Tblsp of the cooking water.
Keep warm.

Add the reserved cooking water to the sauce.
Stir the sauce through the pasta.

Serve with a green salad.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Week 77 Day 3

Stuffed pork fillet
Serves 4 : Easy : Quickish
Ingredients
400gm pork fillet, trimmed
8 ready-to-eat prunes
8 ready-to-eat apricots
¼ cup port, sherry or brandy (optional)
2 – 3 tsp Dijon mustard
Fresh chopped parsley
Ground black pepper, to taste
1 red onion, cut in segments

400gm baby potatoes
2 large carrots, julienne
1 head broccoli, broken into florets

Method
Soak the apricots and prunes in the port for at least 8 hours.
This step is not essential but just makes the dish a little bit special.

Heat the oven to 200ºC.
Spray an oven-proof dish with non-stick cooking spray.

‘Butterfly’ the pork fillet and place between two sheets of plastic wrap.
Hammer gently to about 1 ½ - 2 times the original width.
Spread the cut side of the fillet with Dijon mustard.
Stack the (soaked) prunes and apricots in pairs down the length of the pork.
Roll the pork to enclose the fruit and place the roll on the prepared oven dish, cut side down.
Press chopped parsley over the top and sides of the roll.
Grind pepper all over the pork.
Place the segmented onion around the pork.
Cover with tin foil and bake for 30 – 35 minutes.
Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes before cutting into thick slices.

Meanwhile, boil, steam or microwave the potatoes, carrots and broccoli until tender.

Serve as shown in the photograph.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Week 77 Day 2

Warm chicken salad with rice
Serves 4 : Very easy : Very quick
Ingredients
3 skinless chicken breast fillets
240gm basmati rice
3 courgettes, grated
2 carrots, grated
4 spring onions thinly sliced
1 red pepper cut in strips
1 Tblsp chopped mint
1 Tblsp chopped coriander
1 tsp molasses
2 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
1 Tblsp lime juice
2 Tblsp sweet chilli sauce

Method
Cook the rice until tender.
Drain and keep warm.

Heat the oven to 200ºc.
Spray a baking tray with non-stick cooking spray.
Split the chicken breasts horizontally and spray with non-stick spray.
Bake the chicken for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, combine the molasses, soy, oil, juice and chilli sauce in a small bowl.
Combine the prepared vegetables, mint and coriander in a large bowl.

Using two forks, shred the cooked chicken breasts and add the pieces to the veg bowl.
Pour over the dressing and toss well.

Serve the salad with the rice.
Garnish with extra coriander.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Week 77 Day 1

Bean chowder
Serves 4 : Very easy : Beans require soaking overnight
Ingredients
1 onion, chopped
1 tsp crushed garlic
1 tsp chilli flakes
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground coriander
1 red pepper, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
1 x 800gm tin tomatoes
1 x 400gm tin creamed sweet corn
2 Tblsp tomato paste
800ml vegetable stock
½ cup dried red kidney beans
½ cup dried red speckled beans
(or use 1 x 400gm tin of each, rinsed and drained)

Method
Soak the dried beans in cold water for at least 8 hours.
Cook the beans in fresh water for about 40 minutes, or until they are tender.
Drain.


Spray a large pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Dry fry the onion, garlic and chilli flakes until the onion softens.
Add the cumin and coriander and stir fry for two minutes.
Now add the remaining ingredients (except the beans) and simmer for 20 minutes.
Add the beans and continue cooking for another 10 minutes.

Serve garnished with a spoon of fat free natural yoghurt and a sprinkle of grated cheese, if desired.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Link to .pdf file for Week 77

Go here for the recipes and shopping list for Week 77.
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Week 76 Day 5

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Fattoush
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
4 Pita breads
100gm mixed salad leaves
50gm wild rocket
1 small fennel bulb, thinly sliced
4 tomatoes
10cm length cucumber
4 spring onions
1 green pepper
8 radishes
2 Tblsp chopped mint
3 Tblsp chopped parsley
1 Tblsp olive oil
100ml lemon juice
½ tsp chilli flakes
½ tsp crushed garlic
½ tsp ground black pepper

Method
Split the pita breads horizontally, and cut into ±2cm squares.
Toast under a hot grill for about 5 minutes before turning.
Toast again for 5 minutes.
These are the croutons that give this Middle Eastern salad its name.

Mix together the mint, parsley, oil, lemon juice, chilli, garlic and pepper.
Set aside.

Roughly chop all the vegetables to the same approximate size as the croutons.
Pour over the dressing and toss well to combine.

Add the croutons immediately before serving (to maintain crispness) and toss again.

Serve the salad as a meal on its own or as a side dish with fish.
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Thursday, June 23, 2011

Week 76 Day 4

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Chicken tetrazinni
Serves 4 : Very easy : Takes a little longer
Ingredients
240gm pasta shells
4 skinless chicken breasts, chopped
4 slices thick-cut ham, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
200gm brown mushrooms, chopped
750ml chicken stock
1 heaped Tblsp cornflour
200gm baby spinach, chopped
200ml fat free natural yoghurt
60gm strong cheddar, grated

Method
Cook the pasta in plenty of lightly salted water.
When al dente, drain well and set aside.

Heat the oven to 200ºC.
Spray an oven proof dish with non-stick cooking spray.

Spray a large frying pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Dry fry the chicken until sealed and starting to brown slightly.
Remove from the pan to a large bowl.

Using the same pan, dry fry the onion and mushrooms until soft.
Add to the bowl with the chicken.

De-glaze the pan with the stock.
Add the cornflour mixed to a paste with a little extra water.
Allow the sauce to thicken while stirring.
Pile the spinach on the sauce, stir well to combine, then cover.
Simmer for 3 minutes and allow the spinach to wilt.
Pour the spinach sauce into the bowl with the chicken, onion and mushrooms.
Add the chopped ham and yoghurt and stir everything well.

Tip everything into the prepared oven proof dish.
Scatter over the grated cheese.

Bake for 30 – 35 minutes until the cheese is melted and golden.
Serve with a green salad.
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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Week 76 Day 3

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Ginger tofu and veg with noodles
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
300gm firm tofu, cut in sticks
1 onion, thinly sliced
1 stick celery, thinly sliced
1 – 2 tsp crushed ginger
1 tsp crushed garlic (optional)
2 carrots, julienne
200gm broccoli florets
200gm sugar snap peas, halved lengthways
1 red or green pepper, cut in strips
3 Tblsp barbeque sauce
2 Tblsp low-salt soy sauce
250ml veg stock
3 packs 2-minute noodles

Method
Break the noodles into a bowl or saucepan.
Cook according to the directions on the packet.
Drain.

Spray a wok with non-stick cooking spray.
Place over a medium heat and stir fry the onion, celery, ginger, garlic and tofu.
Let the onion soften and the tofu begin to brown.

Now tip in the remaining veg, the stock and sauces.
Simmer for 5 minutes.

Add the noodles to the wok and stir well to combine.

Serve with sweet chilli sauce or extra soy sauce if desired.
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Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Week 76 Day 2

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Beany pasta sauce
Serves 4 : Very easy : Very quick
Ingredients
320gm tagliatelli

1 x 400gm can chopped tomatoes
1 red onion, sliced
1 tsp crushed ginger
125ml red wine
12 black olives, sliced
2 Tblsp chopped basil
1 x 400gm can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained

4 Tblsp fat free cottage cheese
2 Tblsp chopped parsley

Method
Cook the tagliatelli in plenty of lightly salted boiling water.
Once al dente, drain and keep warm.

Put the tomatoes, onion and garlic in a sauce pan.
Simmer for about 5 minutes until the onion softens.
Add the wine basil and olives and cook for a further 5 minutes.
Finally add the basil and beans and stir.
Allow another 5 minutes for the beans to heat through.

Serve the beany sauce over the pasta.
Garnish with cottage cheese and chopped parsley.
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Monday, June 20, 2011

Week 76 Day 1

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Crusted fish with spinach salad
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
2 slices of bread, crumbed
2 Tblsp chopped parsley
1 tsp sweet paprika
1 egg, beaten
4 ±150gm white fish fillets

200gm baby spinach, roughly chopped
250gm cherry tomatoes, halved
1 red onion, cut into thin segments
2 Tblsp capers, rinsed and drained
1 tsp crushed garlic
¼ cup wine vinegar

480gm McCain’s crinkle cut oven chips

Method
Heat the oven to 220ºC.
Spray a baking tray with non-stick cooking spray.

Combine the bread crumbs, parsley and paprika in a shallow dish.
Dip the fish in the beaten egg and then in the crumbs.
Spray each fillet with cooking spray.

Put the tomatoes, onion, vinegar and garlic in an oven-proof dish.
Spread the oven chips on the prepared baking tray and spray with non-stick cooking spray.
Place the oven chips on a high shelf in the oven.
Put the tomato mix on the shelf beneath.
Bake for 30 minutes, turning the chips and spraying again after 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, spray a large frying pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Dry fry the fish over a medium heat for about 5 - 10 minutes each side or until the fish flakes easily.

Combine the spinach and capers.
Add the tomato / onion and all the juices.
Toss well.

Serve the fish on a bed of the warm spinach salad with the oven chips alongside.

The vinegar and garlic dressing in the salad compliments the fish perfectly.
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Friday, June 17, 2011

Link to .pdf file for Week 76

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Go here for the recipes and shopping list for Week 76.

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Week 75 Day 5

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Ginger chicken noodles
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
4 skinless chicken breast fillets, cut in strips diagonally
½ tsp crushed garlic
1 tsp crushed ginger
1 large carrot, julienne
1 red pepper, julienne
150gm tenderstem broccoli
125gm baby corn, halved diagonally
125gm mange tout, halved lengthways
125ml chicken stock
3 Tblsp sweet chilli sauce
3 Tblsp chopped fresh coriander
3200gm ‘Ready to wok’ noodles

Method
Spray a wok with non-stick cooking spray and place over medium heat.
Stir fry the chicken until it is sealed.
Now add the garlic and ginger, followed by the carrot, pepper, broccoli and corn.
Continue stir frying for 4 or 5 minutes.
Pour in the stock, add the sweet chilli sauce, coriander and noodles.
Stir well and simmer for 5 minutes.

Serve garnished with extra coriander.

This is deliciously fresh, light and crunchy. I bought ‘ready-to-wok’ noodles from Woolworths (SA Marks & Spencer’s equivalent); if you can’t get ready-cooked, use 2-minute noodles prepared according to the directions on the packet.
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Thursday, June 16, 2011

Week 75 Day 4

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Herby mushroom pasta
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
240gm pasta shells

1 onion, thinly sliced
½ tsp crushed garlic
400gm brown mushrooms, sliced
125ml red wine
10 ml soy sauce
200ml vegetable stock
2 tsp dried oregano
1 – 2 Tblsp fresh sage, finely chopped
1 Tblsp cornflour

2 Tblsp fat free natural yoghurt

Method
Cook the pasta in plenty of lightly salted water. Until al dente.
Drain and keep warm.

Spray a deep frying pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Dry fry the onions and garlic until the onion softens and begins to brown.
Add the mushrooms and continue stir frying for 2 – 3 minutes.
Pour in the wine, stock and soy sauce.
Simmer for 5 minutes or until the mushrooms are tender.

Mix the cornflour to a paste with a little water.
Add to the mushrooms, stirring, and allow the sauce to thicken.
Stir through the oregano and sage.
Remove from the heat.
Stir in the yoghurt.

Serve the mushrooms over the pasta and garnish with a little chopped parsley.
Accompany with a green salad.
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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Wee75 Day 3

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Mackerel frittata
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
600gm potatoes, sliced
200gm asparagus, chopped
200gm frozen peas
±12 large cherry tomatoes, quartered

1 400gm can middle cut mackerel in brine,
          drained and flaked

1 onion, thinly sliced
1 tsp crushed garlic (optional)

6 eggs, separated

Method
Boil, steam or microwave the potatoes, asparagus and peas separately.
Once these are cooked, toss together with the tomatoes and mackerel.

Beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form.
Beat the yolks and then fold into the beaten whites.

Turn on the grill.
Spray a large frying pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Dry fry the onion and garlic until the onion softens.
Add the other vegetables and fish to the pan.
Stir well.
Pour the egg mixture into the pan and spread to cover everything.
Continue cooking over a medium to low heat for 5 minutes.
Place under the grill to brown the top.

Serve garnished with chopped parsley.

Mackerel is rich in Omegas 3 and 6. It is quite a ‘meaty’ fish in texture. You could use canned tuna or salmon, if you prefer.
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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Week 75 Day 2

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Chicken with sweet-sour leeks
Serves 4 : Very easy : Very quick
Ingredients
2 leeks, thinly sliced
250ml chicken stock
1 tsp crushed garlic (optional)
1 Tblsp brown sugar
2 Tblsp red wine vinegar

2 red apples, cored and sliced
1 tsp butter
2 tsp brown sugar

4 skinless chick breast fillets

8 patty pan squash, halved
200gm green asparagus, halved
400gm carrots, quartered lengthways
600gm potatoes

Method
Boil the potatoes and carrots in a saucepan.
Steam the asparagus and patty pans over the potatoes and carrots.

Spray a pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Dry fry the chicken for about 5 - 8 minutes each side.
Remove from the pan to the steaming rack with the asparagus and patty pans.

Cook the leeks and garlic in the stock for 5 minutes.
Add the sugar and vinegar and continue cooking until the leek is soft and slightly caramelized.
Remove the leeks to a bowl, cover and keep warm.

Melt the butter and add the sugar.
Fry the apple slices until they are soft and golden.

Toss the asparagus, patty pans and carrots together.
Divide between four dinner plates.
Add the potatoes to the plates.
Slice the chicken thickly and stack beside the vegetables.
Top with the leeks and apple slices.
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Monday, June 13, 2011

Week 75 Day 1

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Hearty lentil soup
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
1 x 400gm can chopped tomatoes
750mls veg stock
150gm red lentils
150gm potatoes, cut in small cubes
150gm carrots, chopped
2 stalks celery, thinly sliced
2 courgettes, chopped
150gm extra fine green beans, chopped
1 Tblsp Patak’s Tikka Masala curry paste

Crusty sesame seed bread

Method
Put everything (except the bread) into a large saucepan.
Stir well and bring to the boil.
Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for 25 – 30 minutes.

Warm the bread, if desired, and serve with the soup.
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Friday, June 10, 2011

Link to .pdf file for Week 75

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Go here for the recipes and shopping list for Week 75.

Remember that the .pdf file gives you a printer-friendly version of all the recipes that will be posted next week - with bigger photographs.

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Week 74 Day 5

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Fish with vegetable stirfry
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
4 large fillets of hake
Fish seasoning

2 baby cabbages, shredded
1 large red pepper, julienne
2 large carrots, julienne
100gm extra fine green beans
2 courgettes, julienne
1 tsp finely chopped green chilli
1 tsp crushed garlic
1 red onion, thinly sliced
100gm mushrooms, sliced

4 Tblsp sweet chilli sauce
Juice and rind 1 lime
1 Tblsp chopped coriander

Method
Combine the chilli sauce, juice, rind and coriander.
Set aside.

Spray a large pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Sprinkle the fish with the seasoning.
Dry fry the fish, presentation side down, for 5 minutes.
Turn fish over and brush the top with the dressing.
Continue cooking until the fish flakes easily.
Keep warm.

Spray a wok with non-stick cooking spray.
Stir fry the onion, pepper, carrots, beans and courgettes with the garlic for 5 minutes.
Add the mushrooms and cabbage and continue stir frying for 5 minutes, or until the cabbage is wilted.

Serve the fish on a bed of the vegetables.
Spoon over the remaining dressing.
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Thursday, June 9, 2011

Week 74 Day 4

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Chicken scaloppini
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
4 skinless chicken breast fillets
4 slices lean back bacon
2 Tblsp chopped parsley
Juice and rind 1 lemon
1 tsp crushed garlic
1 Tblsp tomato puree

600gm new potatoes
Large head broccoli

Extra tomato puree to garnish
Hellmann’s low fat mayo

Method
Heat the oven to 180ºC.
Spray a baking tray with non-stick cooking spray.

Place the chicken fillets between 2 sheets of plastic and hammer until 5mm thin.
Blitz the parsley, garlic, rind, juice and puree to form a paste.
Spread the paste on one side of each piece of chicken.
Roll the chicken up and wrap each with a slice of bacon.
Secure with a toothpick.
Place the chicken rolls on the prepared baking tray.
Bake for about 30 minutes.
Remove from the oven and rest for 5 minutes.
Cut each scaloppini in half on the diagonal.

Meanwhile, boil, steam or microwave the potatoes and broccoli separately.
Keep warm.

Serve the scaloppini with the potatoes and broccoli.
Garnish each plate with a swirl of tomato puree and mayo.
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Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Week 74 Day 3

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Butternut gnocchi
Serves 4 : Very easy : This takes a little over an hour
Ingredients
400gm butternut, cut in chunks

150gm plain flour
1 Tblsp chopped parsley
1 Tblsp chopped basil leaves
1 small egg (or use just the yolk)

400gm baby spinach, roughly chopped
1 small leek, finely sliced
20 cherry tomatoes, halved

Thin flakes of parmesan

Method
Boil, steam or microwave the butternut chunks until soft.
Allow the butternut to go cold before mashing.
Beat in the egg and the fresh herbs.
Fold in the flour, a little at a time, until you have a soft but not sticky dough.

The trick with gnocchi is not to overwork it. Too much handling does something to the gluten in the
flour and makes the gnocchi tough.

Taking a teaspoon full at a time, shape the dough into ovals.
Lightly mark with the back of a fork.
Place the gnocchi in the fridge for 30 minutes before cooking.

Bring a large pan of water to the boil.
Drop the gnocchi into the water in batches.
The gnocchi will rise to the top of the water when cooked.
Remove each batch with a slotted spoon, and drain in a colander.

Steam the spinach and leek together.
Microwave / dry fry the tomatoes until they are starting to pulp.

Serve the gnocchi with the spinach and leek, topped with the tomatoes.
Garnish with flakes of parmesan.

You can use any fresh, soft herbs in the gnocchi. You could also spice them up with some chilli flakes.
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Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Week74 Day 2

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Fish with tomato couscous
Serves 4 : Very easy : Very quick
Ingredients
8 small fish fillets
Fish seasoning

1 cup couscous
1 cup chicken or fish stock
4 large tomatoes, quartered
1 – 2 Tblsp finely shredded fresh basil leaves

2 Tblsp balsamic vinegar
2 tsp honey
2 tsp wholegrain mustard
2 Tblsp dry sherry

Method
Microwave the tomatoes for 2 – 3 minutes until they go pulpy.
Stir in the basil.
Keep warm.

Measure the couscous into a bowl
Pour in the boiling chicken stock.
Cover the bowl and allow to stand for 5 minutes.
Fluff up the grains with a fork.
Now gently fold in the tomato and basil pulp.

Spray a large frying pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Sprinkle the fish with the seasoning.
Dry fry the fish for 3 – 4 minutes each side.
Remove from the pan.

Pour the vinegar, honey mustard and sherry into the pan and stir well.
Return the fish to the pan and simmer for 5 minutes.

Serve the fish on a bed of couscous.
Drizzle over any remaining pan juices.
.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Week74 Day 1

.
Chicken with sage drizzle
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
4 skinless chicken breast fillets

½ tsp crushed garlic
2 tsp wholegrain mustard
¼ cup white wine
½ cup chicken stock
1 tsp fresh sage, shredded

320gm spaghetti or linguine
300gm sugar snap peas, shredded

Method
Cook the pasta in plenty of lightly salted water.
Add the peas for the last five minutes of the cooking time.
Drain well and keep warm.

Spray a frying pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Place the chicken fillets between two sheets of plastic wrap.
Hammer gently to about 5mm thickness.
Dry fry the chicken for 5 minutes each side.
Remove from the pan and keep warm.

Put the garlic, mustard, wine and stock into the pan.
Simmer, uncovered, for about 5 minutes, or until sauce reduces.
Stir through the sage.

Cut the chicken on the diagonal.
Serve on a bed of pasta and peas.
Spoon over the drizzle sauce.

Accompany with a fresh salad, if desired.
.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Link to .pdf file for Week 74

.
Go here for the recipes and shopping list for Week 74.
.

Week 73 Day 5

.
Devilled mushrooms and aubergines
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
1 Tblsp olive oil
1 large onion, thinly sliced
1 tsp crushed garlic
1 small green chilli, finely chopped
1 large aubergine, peeled and chopped
200gm brown mushrooms, sliced
200gm button mushrooms, sliced
4 Tblsp tomato paste
½ cup dry red wine
2 ½ cups strong vegetable stock
1 tsp fresh thyme, finely chopped
2 Tblsp corn flour

Method
Heat the oil in a large saucepan.
Add the onion, chilli and garlic and stir-fry until the onion softens.
Toss in the aubergine and mushrooms and continue to stir-fry for another 5 minutes.
Pour in the wine, tomato paste, thyme and stock and stir well.
Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes.

Mix the cornflour to a paste with a little cold water.
Add to the pan and stir well.
Allow the sauce to thicken, stirring occasionally.

Serve with spinach and mashed potato or soft polenta.
.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Week 73 Day 4

.
Chicken goujons
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
480gm chicken goujons

1 Tblsp honey
2 tsp Dijon mustard
1 Tblsp barbeque sauce
1 tsp sushi vinegar

Method
Mix together the honey, mustard, barbeque sauce and vinegar.
Brush this all over the goujons.
Allow to marinate for 10 minutes.

Spray a ridged pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Dry fry the chicken for 4 or 5 minutes, turning frequently.
Rest the chicken for 5 minutes before serving.

Serve with plain boiled potatoes and a selection of steamed vegetables or a salad.

In the photograph: green beans, rosa tomatoes, carrots, parsnips, broccoli,
Brussels sprouts and celery.
.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Week 73 Day 3

.
Lamb with spicy carrot puree
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
400gm lean lamb strips
2 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp ground cumin

1 Kg carrots, sliced
1 red pepper, chopped
1 tsp crushed garlic
1 small green chilli, finely chopped
2 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp caraway seeds
200ml fat free natural yoghurt

250gm green beans

Chopped fresh parsley

Method
Steam or boil the carrots until almost tender.
Add the red pepper and continue cooking until the carrots are soft.
Drain well.
Blitz the carrots and pepper, adding the garlic, chilli and spices.
Beat in the yoghurt.
Keep warm.

Steam or boil the green beans briefly until they are soft but still crispy and bright green.
Drain well and keep warm.

Toss the lamb strips with the spices.
Spray a frying pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Stir-fry the lamb for about 5 minutes.

Serve the lamb with the beans and puree.
Garnish with chopped fresh parsley.
.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Week 73 Day 2

.
Dolce Pasta bake
Serves 4 : Very easy : Very quick
Ingredients
300gm penne pasta

Splash of olive oil
½ tsp crushed garlic
Bunch of spring onions, sliced
150gm button mushrooms, sliced
100gm mange tout, sliced diagonally
3 courgettes, sliced

100gm Fairview white rock with cranberries cheese
6 Tblsp fat free plain yoghurt
2 Tblsp fresh chopped parsley
1 jumbo egg, lightly beaten

75gm fat reduced mozzarella, grated

Method
Preheat the oven to 200ºC.
Spray a large oven-proof dish with non-stick cooking spray.

Splash a little olive oil into a large frying pan.
Stir-fry the mushrooms, onions, mange tout, courgettes and baby corn for 5 minutes.
Turn off the heat and set aside.

Put the pasta on to cook in plenty of lightly salted boiling water.
Drain once al dente and tip back into the pan.

Now add all the vegetables, the white rock cheese, yoghurt, parsley and egg to the pasta.
Turn gently until well combined.
Tip everything into the prepared oven-proof dish.
Scatter with the mozzarella.

Bake for 20 minutes until the cheese is brown and bubbling.
.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Week 73 Day 1

.
Easy chicken bake
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick to assemble
Ingredients
4 skinless chicken breast fillets
Chicken seasoning
1 – 2 Tblsp sushi (rice wine) vinegar

200gm asparagus
200gm baby corn, quartered lengthways
3 courgettes, quartered lengthways
1 red pepper, sliced
100gm mange tout
100gm mushrooms, sliced
20 cherry tomatoes, halved
1 Tblsp olive oil
1 tsp dried rosemary

480gm new potatoes

Method
Heat the oven to 200ºC.
Spray a casserole dish with non-stick cooking spray.

Toss all the vegetables, the oil and rosemary in a large bowl.
Tip into the prepared dish.
Place the chicken pieces on top of the vegetables.
Sprinkle with the vinegar and chicken seasoning.
Cover with a lid or tin foil.
Bake for 45 – 50 minutes.

Meanwhile, cook the new potatoes in lightly salted water until tender.

Place one chicken breast on each of four dinner plates.
Divide the vegetables between the plates and add the potatoes.
.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Link to .pdf file for Week 73

.

Go here for the recipes and shopping list for Week 73.


.

Week 72 Day 5

.
3 cheese gnocchi
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
300gm soft ricotta cheese
250gms pecorino, grated
1 extra large egg
300ml plain flour

1 x 400gm can chopped tomatoes
1 tsp crushed garlic
1 Tblsp chopped fresh basil
6 baby aubergines (±300gm total), chopped

Grated parmesan cheese

Method
Tip the tomatoes, garlic, basil and aubergines into a sauce and simmer for 30 minutes.

Put the ricotta, pecorino, egg and flour into a large bowl.
Combine to make a sticky dough.
Divide the dough into four.
On a well-floured surface, roll each quarter into a long sausage about 1cm in diameter.
Cut into 1cm lengths.
Roll each piece with the back of a fork to form a gnocchi shape.

¾ fill a large saucepan with lightly salted water and bring to the boil.
Drop the gnocchi into the water.
As they rise to the surface, remove to a colander.

Once all the gnocchi are cooked, drain the water from the saucepan.
Put the gnocchi back into the pan and pour over the tomato sauce.
Stir gently to combine.

Serve with a fresh green salad and grated parmesan.
.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Week 72 Day 4

.
Marmite tart
Serves 4 - 6 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
1 ½ cups flour
Pinch cayenne pepper
Pinch salt
¼ tsp mustard powder
1 tsp baking powder
180gm marg
1 small onion
1 ½ cups grated cheese
⅓ - ½ cup milk
2 eggs
Sliced tomatoes (opt)
For the topping:
60gm butter
1 tsp marmite

Method
Heat the oven to 200ºC.
Spray a pie dish with non-stick cooking spray.

Rub the marg into the dry ingredients.
Add the onion, cheese, egg and milk.
Stir well to combine.
Pile into prepared pie dish.
Smooth out slightly to fill the pie dish.
Top with sliced tomatoes if desired.

Bake for 30 – 35 minutes until well risen and golden.

Melt the butter and marmite together.
Pour over the hot marmite tart.

Serve with a fresh mixed salad.
.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Week 72 Day 3

.
Tomato stew with butternut mash and fish
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
8 small fillets white fish
Fish seasoning

300gm mashing potatoes
300gm butternut, cut in chunks
½ cup fat free milk

6 large tomatoes, chopped
200gm baby spinach, chopped
Handful fresh basil leaves, chopped

Lemon slices and parsley sprigs to garnish

Method
Cook the potato and butternut together until soft.
Drain well and mash.
Beat in the milk.
Keep warm.

Pile the tomatoes, spinach and basil in a saucepan.
Cover and simmer for 15 minutes.

Spray a large ridged pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Sprinkle the seasoning all over the fish.
Cook the fish, presentation side down, for 5 minutes.
Turn and continue cooking until the fish flakes easily.

Serve the fish on a bed of mash and tomato stew.
Garnish with lemon slices and sprigs of parsley.
.



Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Week 72 Day 2

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Schnitzel with mushroom sauce
Serves 4 : Very easy : Very quick
Ingredients
4 small chicken breast fillets
(±500gm total)
3 slices day-old bread, crumbed
1 egg, beaten
1 Tblsp vegetable oil

400gm oven chips

200gm white button mushrooms, chopped
200ml fat free milk powder
400ml water
½ tsp Dijon mustard
1 Tblsp cornflour

Lemon slices to garnish

Method
Heat the oven to 220ºC.
Spray a baking tray with non-stick cooking spray.
Spread the oven chips on the tray and bake for 15 minutes.
Turn the chips over, and bake for another 15 minutes.

Whisk the milk powder into the water in a saucepan.
Drop in the chopped mushrooms and bring to a boil.
Simmer for 5 minutes.
Stir in the cornflour (mixed to a paste with a little water) and mustard.
Bring back to the boil, stirring, then simmer until the sauce thickens.
Keep warm.

Place the chicken breasts (well spaced) between two sheets of plastic.
Hammer until thin.
Dip the chicken into the egg and then into the breadcrumbs to coat.
Heat the oil in a large frying pan.
Fry the schnitzels over a medium heat for 5 minutes.
Turn and continue cooking for another 5 minutes.
Keep warm.

Serve the chips, schnitzel and sauce with lemon wedges and a mixed salad.

Using ‘double-strength’ milk gives a rich, creamy tasting sauce.
.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Week 72 Day 1

 .
Hundreds and some casserole
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
1 carrot, julienne
1 parsnip, julienne
100gm green asparagus, chopped
100gm green beans, chopped
100gm broccoli florets
100gm courgettes, sliced
600ml veg stock
3 Tblsp hoisin sauce
1 Tblsp soy sauce
1 tsp crushed ginger
1 baby cabbage, shredded
1 handful baby spinach, chopped
300gm firm tofu, sliced
100gm mange tout, cut diagonally
1 handful fresh coriander

200gm noodles

Method
Cook the noodles according to the packet directions.
Drain and keep warm.

Put the carrot, parsnip, asparagus, green beans, broccoli and courgettes in a large saucepan.
Add the stock, hoisin, soy and crushed ginger.
Bring to the boil and then simmer for 10 minutes.

Now add the mange tout, cabbage, spinach and tofu.
Simmer for another five minutes.
Give everything a good stir.

Serve in large bowls with the noodles.
Garnish with coriander sprigs.
.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Link to .pdf file for Week 72

.
Go here for the recipes and shopping list for Week 72.


.

Week 71 Day 5

.
Oriental fish soup
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
1 – 2 tsp crushed ginger
Zest and juice of 1 lime
1 ea. green and red chillies, chopped
4 spring onions, sliced
2 Tblsp fish sauce
2 Tblsp light soy sauce
2 tsp brown sugar
300gm rice

100gm mange tout, sliced
300gm skinless white fish, cubed
300gm shrimp
Fresh coriander sprigs
Fresh finely chopped mint

Method
Place the first eight ingredients in a large pan with 1.5lt water.
Bring to the boil and then simmer for 20 minutes.
Add the mange tout and white fish and simmer for another 5 minutes.
Now add the shrimp and heat through.

Serve in large bowls and scatter with the coriander and mint.
Use extra chopped chillies and/or spring onions to garnish if desired.
.


Thursday, May 19, 2011

Week 71 Day 4

.
Steak and pea puree
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
320gm oven chips

6 tomatoes, halved
4 tsp balsamic vinegar

4 cups frozen peas
2 Tblsp chopped mint
12 Tblsp Hellmann’s low fat mayo
400gm lean beef steak (fillet)
4 tsp Dijon mustard

Method
Heat the oven to 220ºC.

Spray two baking trays with non-stick cooking spray.
Place the tomato halves on one baking tray.
Sprinkle the balsamic over the tomatoes.
Spread the oven chips over the second baking tray.
Bake the tomatoes (middle to low shelf) and chips (top shelf) for 30 minutes,
or until the chips are nicely browned.

Boil the peas for 5 minutes.
Drain well.
Add the mint to the peas and blitz to a puree.
Beat in the mayo.
Keep warm.

Spray a ridged pan with non-stick cooking spray and place on the heat.
Spread the mustard over the steak.
Dry fry the steak for 5 minutes each side – or until cooked to your liking.
Allow the steak to rest for 5 minutes, then cut into thick fingers.

Serve the steak fingers on a bed of pea puree, alongside the tomatoes and chips.
.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Week 71 Day 3

.
Fish Nicoise
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
1 x 400gm chopped tomatoes & onions
60gm Peppadew hot whole sweet red peppers, chopped
1 – 2 Tblsp chopped fresh parsley
½ tsp dried thyme
2 anchovy fillets, chopped
1 Tblsp capers, chopped
12 black olives, chopped
4 white fish fillets, skinless
480gm new potatoes

Method
Heat the oven to 180ºC.

Cook the potatoes in lightly salted water until soft.
Drain and keep warm.

In a bowl, mix the tomatoes and onions, red peppers, parsley, thyme, anchovies , capers and olives.
Stir well.

Spray an oven proof dish with non-stick cooking spray.
The dish should be large enough to take all the fish in a single layer.
Lay the fish in the prepared dish.
Pour over the tomato mixture.
Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes.
Remove the foil and cook for a further 15 minutes.

Serve with the new potatoes and a green salad.
.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Week 71 Day 2

.
Herby rice with radish salad
Serves 4 : Very easy : Very quick
Ingredients
240gm rice
1 Tblsp veg stock powder
4 Tblsp soft herbs, finely chopped
E.g.: basil, mint, chives, parsley

12 – 15 radishes, chopped
3 stalks celery, finely sliced
1 red onion, halved and sliced
1 small cucumber, quartered and sliced
1 Tblsp olive oil
1 Tblsp lemon juice
1 Dsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp caster sugar

320gm stir-fry strips e.g. pork, chicken, beef

Method
Cook the rice in water with the stock powder.
When cooked, drain off any excess water and stir through the soft herbs.
Keep warm.

While the rice is cooking, prepare the vegetables for the salad.
Mix together the oil, lemon juice, mustard and sugar.
Pour this over the vegetables and toss well.
Set aside.

Spray a pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Stir fry the meat strips for about 5 minutes.

Serve the rice and salad with the stir-fried strips.
.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Week71 Day 1

.
Butternut parmesan pasta
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
1 large butternut, cleaned and cubed
2 onions, cut in thin wedges
400gm penne
1 Tblsp olive oil
1 – 2 tsp crushed garlic
Pinch of chilli flakes (optional)
2 Tblsp chopped fresh parsley
4 Tblsp grated parmesan

Method
Cook the pasta in plenty of lightly salted boiling water until al dente.
Drain, reserving 3 Tblsp of the cooking water.
Add the oil, garlic and chilli to the pasta pan and cook for 1 minute.
Remove to a plate and set aside.

Using the same pan, cook the butternut and onion until tender.
Add back the pasta and reserved water.
Next, stir in the oil/garlic and the parsley.
Allow to heat through thoroughly.

Serve topped with the parmesan, alongside a salad.
.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Week 70 Day 4

.
I have no idea why this post did not publish at the scheduled time. My apologies.
 
Chicken casserole with dumplings
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
8 skinless chicken thighs
2 Tblsp flour
300ml chicken stock
200gm baby leeks, sliced
2 tsp crushed garlic
200gm carrots, sliced
200gm parsnips, sliced
2 stalks celery, finely sliced
1 x 300gm can broad beans, drained
2 bay leaves
For the dumplings:
130gm self-raising flour
45gm low fat spread
2 Tblsp chopped parsley

Method
Preheat the oven to 180ºC.
Spray a large casserole dish with non-stick cooking spray.
Spray a large pan with non-stick cooking spray.

Toss the chicken in the flour to coat.
Dry fry the thighs until golden and sealed.
Remove to the casserole dish.

Pour the stock into the pan with the leeks and garlic.
Bring to the boil while stirring.
Now add the carrots, parsnips, celery and bay leaves.
Bring back to the boil.
Carefully pour the vegetables and stock over the chicken.
Cover and bake for 30 minutes.

For the dumplings, rub the fat into the self-raising flour.
Stir through the parsley.
Add enough water (80-100ml) to form a sticky dough.
Using well-floured hands, shape the dough into eight balls.

Add the broad beans to the casserole dish and stir well.
Space the dumplings around the dish.
Return to the oven and bake, uncovered, for another 30 minutes.
.


Friday, May 13, 2011

Link to .pdf file for Week 71

.
Go here for the recipes and shopping list for Week 71.
.

Week 70 Day 5

.
Spiced salmon with bean salad
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
300gm extra fine green beans, trimmed
1 x 400gm can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1 red onion, finely chopped
1 Tblsp olive oil
2 Tblsp lemonjuice
4 x ±130gm salmon fillets
1 – 2 tsp ground cumin

480gm new potatoes

Method
Boil or steam the potatoes until done.
Drain and keep warm.

Steam the green beans for 5 minutes and then cool with cold water.
Drain and then mix together the green beans, cannellinis, onion, oil and lemon juice.

Rub the salmon with cumin and spray with non-stick cooking spray.
Sprinkle with a little pepper, if desired.

Spray a ridged pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Dry fry the salmon, presentation side down, for 5 – 8 minutes.
Turn and continue to cook until the fish flakes easily.

Serve the fish on a bed of the prepared bean salad.
Accompany with the potatoes and a simple green salad.
.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Week 70 Day 3

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Hot (or not) pepper pasta
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
1 onion, chopped
2 – 3 sticks celery, sliced
2 cans chopped tomatoes
20 pitted black olives, sliced
1 green pepper, chopped
1 yellow pepper, chopped
100gm sugar snap peas
100gm baby corn
4 Tblsp finely chopped parsley
½ - 1 tsp Mexican seasoning (opt.)
4 Tblsp grated parmesan

320gms farfalle

Method
Put the farfalle on to cook in lightly salted boiling water.
Drain when al dente and keep warm.

Meanwhile, spray a saucepan with non-stick cooking spray.

Dry-fry the onions and celery until softened.
Add the tinned tomatoes, peppers, peas, parsley and olives.
Sprinkle in the Mexican seasoning, if using.
Stir well.
Cover and simmer for 10 – 15 minutes.

Serve the sauce over the farfalle, topped with the parmesan, with a salad on the side.
.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Week 70 Day 2

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Thai red veg curry
Serves 4 : Very easy : Very quick
Ingredients
I red onion, finely chopped
2 stalks of celery
1 tsp crushed ginger
2 Tblsp red curry paste
200gm butternut chunks
1 cup red lentils
2 cups veg stock
4 courgettes, thickly sliced
100ml double strength fat free milk*

240gm rice

4 poppadums (microwaved over a bowl)

Method
Cook the rice in lightly salted water (or veg stock).
Drain once tender and keep warm.

Spray a pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Dry fry the onion and celery until they soften.
Add the garlic and curry paste and cook for 30 seconds.

Add the butternut chunks, lentils and stock.
Cover and simmer for 15 – 20 minutes.
Now toss in the courgettes, beans and milk and stir.
Cover and simmer for another 5 minutes.

Spoon the curry into a shaped poppadum and serve with the rice.

*Make double strength milk by mixing 50ml fat free milk powder with100ml of water.
.



Monday, May 9, 2011

Week 70 Day 1

.
Smoked trout with almond beans
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
4 lightly smoked trout fillets, each about 120gm
1 Tblsp olive oil
1 Tblsp horseradish
1 Tblsp lemon juice

480gms new potatoes
350gm green beans
4 courgettes

2 Tblsp flaked almonds

Method
Combine the oil, horseradish and lemon juice.
Brush this over the presentation side of the fish.

Put the potatoes on to cook in lightly salted water.
Drain once cooked and keep warm.

Steam or microwave the courgettes and beans for about 10 minutes.
Drain and keep warm.

Spray a ridged pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Dry fry the trout, presentation side down, for 5 minutes.
Carefully turn the fish over, and cook gently for another 5 – 10 minutes, or until the fish flakes easily.

Make a bed of beans on each of four plates and scatter with the flaked almonds.
Place the trout on top of the beans.
If there is any of the horseradish/lemon/oil left, spoon it over the fish.

Serve the potatoes and courgettes on the side.
.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Link to .pdf file for Week 70

.
Go here for the recipes and shopping list for Week 70.
.

Week 69 Day 5

.
Chicken, asparagus and broccoli au gratin
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
1 onion, chopped
½ tsp crushed garlic
400gm chicken breast fillets, cut in bite size pieces
1 bay leaf
250ml chicken stock
200gm fresh asparagus
200gm broccoli florets

2 Tblsp cornflour
250ml double strength fat free milk (use ¼ cup milk powder)
Lemon juice to taste
2 slices bread, crumbed
30gm parmesan, finely grated
½ tsp paprika

Method
Spray a large pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Dry-fry the onion and garlic until the onion starts to soften.
Remove the onion and garlic from the pan and set aside.

Toss the chicken pieces in the pan and seal on all sides.
Add back the onion and garlic.
Add the bay leaf and stock.
Simmer for 15 minutes.

Heat the oven to 180ºC.
Steam or microwave the broccoli and asparagus.

Mix the cornflour to a paste with a little of the milk.
Add to the pan and stir well.
Pour in the rest of the milk and a little lemon juice to taste.
Allow to simmer for another 5 minutes.

Spray a casserole dish with non-stick cooking spray.
Tip the chicken, broccoli and asparagus into the dish.
Combine the breadcrumbs, parmesan and paprika.
Sprinkle over the chicken mixture.

Bake for 25 – 30 minutes.

Serve with a fresh salad and/or vegetables of your choice.
.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Week 69 Day 4

.
Hake Mornay
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
250ml water or fish stock
2 bay leaves
4 peppercorns
2 slc lemon
500gm hake fillets

1 – 2 Tblsp cornflour
400ml fat free milk
6 Low fat Melrose cheese wedges
3 Tblsp finely chopped parsley

480gm potatoes

Method
Boil the potatoes until tender.
Drain well and crush.
Set aside.
Make a sauce with the milk, cornflour, onion, cheese and parsley.
Set aside.

Place the water, bay leaves, peppercorns and lemon slices in a large pan.
Bring to the boil and then add the fish.
Simmer for about 7 minutes.
Remove the fish from the poaching liquid and flake.

Heat the oven to 200ºC.
Spray an oven-proof dish with non-stick cooking spray.
Tip the fish into the prepared dish.
Pour over 2/3 of the sauce.
Top with the crushed potatoes.
Pour over the remaining cheese-parsley sauce.
Scatter the top with a little grated cheese if you like.

Bake for 30 minutes.

Serve with a crisp mixed salad.
.


Wednesday, May 4, 2011

A favourite hobby-horse…

.
Take-aways. Hmmm. How many take-away meals do you eat in a week? Generally, take-aways are heavy on the fats and starches and the portion sizes are out of balance - bad for general healthy and the waistline. And bad for the wallet.

I'll admit that it's very nice, occasionally, to be relieved of kitchen duty. You don't have to prepare, cook or clean up afterwards. Occasionally. But you can easily prepare and freeze home-made ready meals in bulk. Hamburgers, chicken burgers and bolognaise sauce are all simple to prepare in bulk. Then you can serve those burgers on whole grain rolls, with a healthy serving of salad. And boiling up a pot of pasta takes very little time or effort.

Many recipes can be doubled up; while you're preparing one meal for immediate consumption you're getting the health benefits of a second meal with minimal extra effort. Just make sure you label your extra meal, stuff can become unrecognizable once it's frozen. And put the date on, too.

Invest in some of those rectangular foil boxes, they stack well in the freezer. If you're careful, you can re-use them three or four times.

I have had great success with freezing home-made lasagna (mince, chicken and vegetarian), soups, pizzas, stews and casseroles. I try to keep my freezers organized - one shelf/basket for home-made ready meals, one for breads and muffins, one for vegetables, etc. Even if you only have an 'ice box' at the top of your fridge, you'll be surprised at what you can fit in.

Now all you have to remember is to take something out to thaw in the morning.
.

Week 69 Day 3

.
Bacon & cannellini bean pizza
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
4 rasher lean low fat bacon
4 small naan breads
4-5 tblsp tomato paste
1 red onion, sliced
1 red/green capsicum, sliced
1 x 400gm can cannellini beans,
rinsed and drained
dried oreganum
120gm low fat mozzarella, grated

Method
Loosely wrap the bacon in grease-proof paper and microwave for 2 minutes.
Chop the bacon.
Roughly mash the cannellini beans.
Heat the oven to 200ºC.

Spray a baking tray with non-stick cooking spray.
Spread each naan bread with the tomato paste.
Place the naan breads on the prepared baking tray.
Top with the onion, bacon, beans, capsicum and oreganum.
Scatter over the mozzarella.
Sprinkle generously with oreganum.

Bake for 10 - 15 mins, or until the cheese is golden and the base is crispy.

Serve with a fresh green salad and oil free salad dressing, if desired.

For a vegetarian version, omit the bacon.
.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Week 69 Day 2

.
Lamb and apricot meatballs
Serves 4 : Very easy : Very quick
Ingredients
400gm lean lamb
8 Turkish apricots
2 Tblsp good mint sauce
4 slices brown bread

1 red onion, finely chopped
1 tsp crushed garlic
2 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp ground cumin
1 x 400gm can chopped tomatoes

Pillow pack Woolworth’s beetroot and cranberry leaf salad
1 large carrot, grated
½ cucumber, sliced
4 Tblsp fat free natural yoghurt
4 pita pockets

Method
Spray a pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Dry fry the onion, garlic and spices until the onion starts to soften.
Remove ½ the onion mix from the pan and allow it to cool slightly.
Add the chopped tomatoes to the remaining onion.
Simmer gently while you:

Put the lamb into a food processor and pulse until minced.
Add the bread, apricots, mint sauce and cooled onions to the processor bowl.
Pulse again until everything is well combined.
Use a teaspoon to portion and shape the minced mixture into balls.

Gently fry the meatballs and brown all over.
Drop them into the pan of tomato sauce and leave to simmer while you:

Plate up the salad and scatter the grated carrot over the top.
Arrange the cucumber slices to one side of the salad.
Measure the yoghurt into mini-bowls.
Share the meat balls and tomato sauce between the plates.

Serve with the warmed pita pockets.
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Monday, May 2, 2011

Week 69 Day 1

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Chicken burger patties
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
400gm skinless chicken breast
4 slices wholewheat bread
4 large spring onions
1 – 2 Tblsp chopped parsley
Salt and pepper

400gm mashing potatoes
400gm butternut
2 Tblsp chopped parsley

300gm frozen peas
3 – 4 tomatoes, sliced

Method
Cook the potatoes and butternut in lightly salted water.
Once soft, drain well and mash.
Beat in the parsley.
Keep warm.

Steam or microwave the peas.
Keep warm.

Put the chicken, bread, onions, parsley and seasoning in a food processor.
Pulse until everything comes together in a ball.
On a floured board, shape the mixture into 8 patties.

Spray a large ridged pan and the patties with non-stick cooking spray.
Dry fry the patties for about 5 minutes each side.

Serve 2 patties per person along with the peas, mash and tomatoes.
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Friday, April 29, 2011

Week 68 Day 5

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Salmon pasta bake
Serves 4 : Very easy : Quick
Ingredients
240g pasta quills

200gm mushrooms, sliced
150gm cherry tomatoes, halved
1 x 400gm can chopped tomatoes with onion

250gm pink salmon (drained weight)
80gm reduced fat cheddar cheese, grated

Method
Cook the pasta in plenty of lightly salted water.
Drain when al dente and set aside.

Spray a pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Dry fry the mushrooms until they soften and start to colour.
Add the fresh and canned tomatoes.
Simmer until the cocktail tomatoes go pulpy.

Spray a large oven-proof dish with non-stick cooking spray.
Heat the grill.

Tip the pasta into the pan with the tomato mixture and stir well.
Fold in the drained salmon and allow everything to heat through.

Pour the pasta mix into the oven proof dish.
Scatter the grated cheese over the top.

Brown under the grill for 10 minutes or until the cheese is melted and starting to brown.

Serve with a salad of mixed lettuce and cucumber.
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