Creamy & Light Chicken, Bacon & Pea Orzo

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If you follow me on Instagram you will know this was in fact last night’s dinner, we’re having steak tonight, but this turned out so utterly delicious I decided to pop the recipe up for you all. My full intention was to make one of the many healthy risotto recipes I already have up on my blog but alas when I opened the press I had very little Arborio rice left but I did have a full packet of Orzo pasta so I had to think quick on my feet and with a few google searches later, an amalgamation of and tweak of several previous recipes and I had formulated my very own recipe using the ingredients I had available to me in the fridge. I cannot recommend this one highly enough, regardless of the fact it was thrown together rather haphazardly, it actually turned out to be the tastiest and best thing I have made in quite a little while (as is often the case) and that’s saying a lot because in my humble opinion my recipes are pretty darn tasty to begin with if I do say so myself. It isn’t unlike a risotto in texture and consistency so if you’re a huge risotto fan like me you will just adore this little spin on it. Continue reading

Melting Mozzarella Stuffed Meatballs with Tomato, Bacon & Sweet Basil Sauce

I absolutely adore meatballs I definitely don’t think it’s the first time I’ve mentioned this nugget of information. Pasta is one of my all-time favourite foods to eat. I rarely make meatballs the same way twice, I always adapt them and adjust the ingredients to come up with different flavour combinations and variations. These are stuffed with gorgeous reduced fat mozzarella that melts in the centre and oozes out when you cut into each juicy meatball. This recipe serves 4 people at 12 Smartpoints a serving or Macros per serving 492Cal P46 C49 F11 Continue reading

Succulent Chicken Fillet with Nutty Maasdam Dutch Cheese & Sweet Ramiro Red Pepper encased in Tender Prosciutto accompanied by Golden Roasted Baby Potatoes & Beneforte Broccoli

The Easiest Healthy One Pot Dish! I cannot begin to tell you how simple this was to make, the chicken stays incredibly moist & juicy due to being wrapped in the prosciutto & the sweetness of the pepper & creaminess of the cheese is just divine! It lifts a plain ordinary chicken dinner to a new level. It all goes in one casserole dish in the oven so minimal fuss or mess involved. I just lay the cheese & pepper on top of the chicken which also avoids all that faffing about trying to cut a pocket in the meat, it honestly couldn’t be easier! You could probably make this lower points again by using light buffalo mozarella sliced instead, which I originally intended but I didn’t have any in the fridge (the maasdam is 3 Smartpoints so adjust accordingly). All items were bought in Aldi. Mine was 10 Smartpoints (or 4 Smartpoints on No Count).

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Simple & Tasty Leftover Roast Turkey & Baked Ham Cheesy Pasta Bake


And the Annual Conundrum of what to do with all the Tasty Christmas Dinner leftovers begins! Usually there is more Turkey & Ham prepared than any one Household can eat. Well I decided to turn mine into a Gorgeous Filling & Tasty, Healthy Pasta Bake with Petit Pois & a Silky Cheese Sauce for just 12 propoints a serving. This will serve 4 hungry people. I hope you had a Wonderful Christmas Day

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Exquisite Bacon, Garden Pea & Baby Asparagus Risotto with Manchego Cheese

  

Me & Risotto have a love affair situation going on. It’s creamy & flavoursome, warm and comforting, it’s like a hug in a bowl really. It has long held a bad reputation for being difficult to master but that is far from the truth. It takes a little loving with the time to stir & tend to it, but difficult?… No. This version has beautiful vibrant green asparagus & peas & a note of sweet & nutty manchego cheese. You can have a nice comfy portion for 9 propoints (7 on F&H). Serves 4. Here’s the skinny:  
240g Arborio Risotto Rice

8 Lean Bacon Medallions Diced

2 Large Shallots Diced

80g Frozen Garden Peas

A Bunch of Baby Asparagus 

1 Clove Garlic

45g Manchego Cheese Grated

1 & 1/2 Litres Chicken Stock made with 1 Stock Cube

A Handful of Fresh Thyme Leaves

Salt & Black Pepper 

  
Place your stock into a saucepan over a low heat for the duration of cooking so it stays nice and hot. Heat a large based saucepan over a medium heat & spray it with oil. Cook the Bacon & Shallots for about 5 minutes until the bacon is cooked and the shallots are soft. Trim the ends off the asparagus & add it & the frozen peas to the pot cook for another 3 to 4 minutes stir it gently so you don’t break up the asparagus. Add the crushed garlic & stir for a further 30 seconds. Add the rice to the pot & cook for 2 minutes stirring regularly until the rice goes a bit translucent around the edge with a white centre. Start adding the stock 1 ladel at a time and gently stir the risotto regularly. Wait until the ladel of stock is absorbed before adding the next one. You probably won’t use all the stock just use as much as the risotto absorbs within the cooking time. It will take 20 minutes to fully cook the rice. 

 

About 10 minutes before the end of the cooking time season with salt & pepper and the fresh thyme. When it’s cooked take the pot off the heat & stir in the grated manchego cheese. Put a lid on the pot and allow the risotto to rest for 3 to 5 minutes prior to serving. Serve & enjoy!  

Easy Cheesy Healthy Bolognese Pasta Bake

  I’m quite adept at coming up with ideas to use up leftovers & I had leftover mince, cheese & thyme from last night’s dinner so this is what was made. I always have a few staples & tinned plum tomatoes always inhabit my larder so this was a very easy healthy & quite a filling choice. Pasta is always my go to comfort food, it’s extremely versatile & incredibly satisfying to the tummy. Bolognese is always so packed with flavour & tasty be it served with spaghetti & cheese or baked in the oven in this gorgeous pasta bake. This serves 4 hungry people at 10pp a portion (1pp on F&H). Dinner is sorted! Here’s the Skinny:   400g Lean 5% Fat Beef Steak Mince

1 Onion Finely Diced

2 Large Carrots Finely Diced

2 Sticks of Celery Finely Diced

1 Red Pepper Diced

1 Clove of Garlic Crushed

2 Tins of Plum Tomatoes

1 Tbsp Tomato Purée 

1 Tsp Dried Oregano

A Few Spigs Fresh Thyme Leaves 

A Handful of Fresh Basil 

Salt & Black Pepper 

240g Dried Pasta Shapes

30g Reduced Fat Grated Cheddar

30g Reduced Fat Grated Mozzarella  Start by making the Bolognese sauce, this is not difficult in the slightest but it does require time to simmer down & thicken into a glossy flavour filled sauce otherwise the sauce will be watery & not as flavoursome. Heat a large pot over a medium heat & spray with oil. Add the onion & fry for approximately 5 minutes until softening. Add in the carrots, pepper & celery & fry for a further 5 minutes. Add the mince & cook until browned through. Add the garlic & cook for a further minute. Add in the tomatoes chopping them with a sharp knife once in the pot. Add the purée, the rest of the herbs (except the basil) & salt & pepper. Cook over a medium low heat uncovered for 45 minutes to an hour stirring occasionally until the Bolognese is thick & glossy. Meanwhile prepare the pasta according to packet instructions in a large pot of salted boiling water.   Just before adding to the bake tear the basil leaves into the bolognese & stir through. Place the cooked pasta shapes & Bolognese in an ovenproof dish & top with the grated cheese. Place in a preheated oven at 180c for about 30 minutes. Serve & enjoy!  

Delicious Thin Crust Cheese & Veggie Pizza

  
The easiest 2 ingredient dough in the world to make, no waiting around for it to prove just knead, roll & top! Who doesn’t like pizza? It’s so versatile you can top this with whatever takes your fancy. Add some Roast Chicken or Prosciutto if you fancy a meat version just remember to add the additional points. Buffalo Mozzarella & Pesto would also be fantastic the dough is 10pp so you can play around with toppings & add points accordingly this one was 14 propoints for the entire pizza. Here’s the skinny:  
For the Dough:

95g Self Raising Flour

100g 0% Fat Greek Yogurt 

A Pinch of Salt  

For the Sauce:

Passata 

1 Tbsp Tomato Purée 

Dried Oregano 

Salt and Black Pepper 

To Top:

Red Onion Finely Sliced 

Red & Yellow Pepper Finely Sliced 

Mushrooms Sliced

Basil Leaves

30g Grated Reduced Fat White Cheddar 

30g Grated Reduced Fat Mozzarella 

  
Mix the flour and yogurt together in a bowl with a tiny pinch of salt until it forms a dough. Sprinkle a Tbsp of flour on your work surface (this is accounted for in the points) and knead the dough for 5 minutes. Roll it out into a large thin base. Mix the sauce ingredients (as much passata as needed) and spread thinly over the base. Top with the cheese & toppings of your choice. Bake in a preheated oven at 190c for 15 to 20 minutes until cooked through & browning. Slice, serve & enjoy!  

Juicy Double Bacon Cheese Burger on a Brioche Bun with Spicy Taco Sauce & Roasted Rosemary Butternut Squash Fries accompanied by Creamy Homemade Crème Fraiche Coleslaw

  
All of this can be yours for just 11 propoints (6pp F&H) who said Healthy Eating can’t be fun! 

For the Burgers:

500g Lean Steak Mince (5% Fat)

1 Onion Very Finely Diced

½ Tsp Mustard Powder

A Couple of Splashes of Worcestershire Sauce

¼ Tsp Spicy Smoked Paprika

1 Tsp Dried Parsley

½ Tsp Dried Oregano

½ Tsp Garlic Granules  

For the Taco Sauce:

4 Tbsps Lighter than Light Mayonnaise

2 Tbsp Tomato Ketchup

A Pinch of Spicy Smoked Paprika

A Splash of Tabasco

To Serve:

1 Aldi Brioche Burger Bun

A Couple of Leaves of Baby Gem Lettuce

Red Onion Sliced into Rounds

Sliced Tomato

8 Bacon Medallions

4 Reduced Fat Cheese Slices

For the Butternut Squash Fries:

2 Large Butternut Squash Peeled & Diced into Chip Shapes

A Handful of Fresh Rosemary Leaves Chopped  

For the Coleslaw:

Grated Carrot (1 medium)

Grated White Cabbage (about ¼ or so)

49g Half Fat Crème Fraiche

Salt & Black Pepper  

Grate the Carrot & White Cabbage in a food processer using the grating attachment. Place in a bowl with the crème fraiche & season with salt & black pepper. Cover with cling film & refrigerate until needed. Mix all the Taco Sauce ingredients well in a bowl until fully combined, cover with cling film & refrigerate until needed. Meanwhile combine all the burger ingredients together well in a bowl, try not to compact the meat too much with your hands, lightly mix it to avoid dense burgers. Divide the mixture into 8 meatballs & flatten them down to form 8 thin burger patties (these are thinner than my usual burgers but you get 2 so it’s essentially the same amount of meat in the end). Some of the diced onion might not make it into the patties & get left in the bowl this is fine the onion is for flavour & also to bulk the burgers out so don’t worry too much about leftovers as long as all the meat is used. These can be made in advance & covered & refrigerated until needed if necessary. Preheat your oven to 200c. Blot the Butternut Squash Fries with Kitchen roll to remove any additional moisture & Place them in a single layer on a baking tray lined with baking paper & sprayed with oil. Spray the chips with oil & season with salt & black pepper & scatter with the chopped Rosemary Leaves. Bake for 15 minutes, take out of the oven for 15 minutes & place back into the preheated oven for a further 15 to 20 minutes. Fry the red onion rounds & bacon in a hot pan sprayed with oil for approximately 5 or 6 minutes or until cooked through. Remove from the pan & keep warm. Fry the Burgers in the hot pan sprayed with oil for approximately 3 minutes each side or until fully cooked through & browning. Assemble the 4 burgers by laying the lettuce, tomato & red onion on your bun, lay a burger on top & a cheese slice & bacon medallion on top of each burger. Repeat this layer topping with the taco sauce instead of a second cheese slice. Top with the bun lids & serve with the butternut squash fries & the coleslaw & Enjoy!

Ooey Gooey Oven Baked Mozzarella Sticks with Zingy Fresh Homemade Salsa

  I’ve been best friends with cheese for as long as I can remember, I love cheese & cheese loves me. We are both happier when we are in each others lives. I cannot imagine being told I was intolerant to it, I truly would be inconsolable! Whatever would I do without my beloved cheese! Ok maybe I’m being slightly over dramatic 😆 but you get the picture! These wonderful little sticks of cheesy goodness are an absolute delight to behold & nothing near as fattening as their shop bought counterparts, these won’t do any damage at all coming in at a healthy 5pp each and the recipe serves 2, I’d round up to 3pp on F&H.  For the Mozzarella Sticks:

200g pack (125g drained weight) half fat Fresh Mozzarella 

2 Slices Calorie Controlled Wholemeal Bread 

1 Egg

A Handful of Basil Leaves

1/4 tsp Garlic Granules

Salt & Black Pepper   For the Salsa:

5 Ripe Vine Tomatoes 

1 Tin Plum Tomatoes 

1 Clove of Garlic 

A Handful of Fresh Coriander 

1 Lime

1 Red Chilli

1/2 a White Onion 

1/4 tsp Ground Cumin

1/4 tsp Sweetener 

Salt & Black Pepper   Slice the Mozzarella into 8 sticks & pop into a tupperware tub & freeze for half an hour. Blitz the Bread, Basil, Garlic Granules & Salt and Pepper in your food processor until it makes fine breadcrumbs and place in a bowl. Beat the egg in a small separate bowl. Dip the Mozzarella Sticks into the egg mixture & then into the breadcrumbs coating them well & repeat, dip into the egg again & back into the breadcrumbs. Place on a baking tray lined with tinfoil & sprayed with sprayoil. Bake in a preheated oven at 

220c for approximately 16 minutes turning half way through. Roughly chop all the salsa ingredients except the tinned tomatoes & deseed your vine tomatoes. Place everything in your food processor & whizz until smooth, put in a bowl & cover & refrigerate until needed. If you can’t be bothered making the salsa this would be lovely with shop bought sweet chilli sauce just adjust the propoints accordingly. Serve the hot melting Mozzarella Sticks with a small bowl of the Salsa & enjoy!   

Smokey BBQ Cheese & Bacon Burger with Spicy Mayo & Caramelised Balsamic Onions Served on a Lightly Toasted Brioche Bun with Pickles & Homemade Fries

  Phew! Get your mouth around that! The name & the burger! There are days when I seem to use my points quickly & they’re nearly all gone by lunch, then there are other days when I’ve barely used any points come dinnertime, well today was one of those days and I haven’t really felt like eating that much the last few days after being in pain with my back but following a visit to the chiropractor earlier today I’m feeling a good bit better & I’m making up for it with Dinner. This makes 4 Burgers & it’s 14pp including the fries. I hope you enjoy!   For the Caramelised Balsamic Onions:

3 Onions Sliced

A Splash of Balsamic Vinegar

Start making the onions first thing as they take a while to cook, the longer the better. Place the sliced onions in a pan sprayed with sprayoil over a very low heat & cook slowly for at least 25 to 30 minutes stirring occasionally until the onion has gone very soft & is browning. Add in a splash of Balsamic Vinegar for the last 10 minutes of cooking time.  For the Homemade Fries:

600g (150g per person) potatoes cut into chips.

Sprayoil

Place the chipped Potatoes on a plate & microwave for 3 minutes. Spray well with sprayoil & place in a preheated oven at 200c for 25 to 30 minutes or until browned & cooked through.  For the Smokey BBQ Burgers:

450g Steak Mince (5% Fat)

1 Red Onion Finely Diced 

1/8th of a tsp of Mustard

1 tsp Dried Oregano 

1 tsp BBQ Seasoning 

A Sprinkle of Garlic Granules

A Sprinkle of Smoked Paprika 

A Splash of Worcestershire Sauce

Small Handful of Fresh Parsley 

Salt & Pepper

Mix all the Ingredients well but lightly in a large bowl & shape them, lightly pressing the mixture into 4 equal size burger patties. Cook on a preheated griddle pan sprayed with sprayoil for approximately 8 to 10 minutes a side until fully cooked through. 

For the Spicy Mayonnaise:

3 Tbsp lighter than light mayo

1 Tbsp Tomato Ketchup 

1/4 of a tsp of Smoked Paprika 

Mix well in a small bowl until smooth & refrigerate until needed.

To Serve:

4 Brioche Burger Buns 

4 Light Cheese Slices

8 Fat Free Bacon Medallions Fried

Pickles Sliced

Place the Brioche Buns in the Oven for a minute or so with a cheese slice on each lid. Place pickles on the bun base, layer burger on top with bacon, caramelised onions, spicy mayo & top with the cheesy bun lid. Secure with a bamboo skewer to hold it in place. Serve with the hot Homemade Fries with Salt & Vinegar & Enjoy!