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
You might have noticed the recurring theme this week is quick, easy and healthy. It has been one of those weeks it really has! But don’t worry we all have those kinds of weeks & I’ve got you covered with quick & easy tasty meals to make your life a little simpler if you’re having a hectic week too. Tonight’s dinner honestly couldn’t be more easy to throw together in a hurry. This serves 1 person at 11 Smartpoints (2sp no count) or Macros 573cal, P79, C45, F8. Continue reading
This simple delicious Hungarian recipe uses only a few key ingredients to create a flavourful and comforting dish with the spicy warmth of paprika accentuating the tender pork fillet, caramelised onions and sweet bell peppers. This is accompanied by a generous side of fluffy basmati rice to soak up the beautifully creamy flavour filled sauce although I have served it with pasta and it’s equally as gorgeous. This beautiful compilation will keep the chill out on these cool January nights. This serves 4 people at 13 Smartpoints per serving (paprikash 7sp, Rice 6sp – It will be 4 Smartpoints in total for a serving including both the paprikash and rice if following the No Count Plan, but could be lowered to 0 Smartpoints if you use Low Fat Natural or Greek yogurt in place of Crème Fraiche).
400g Lean Pork Fillet Diced
1 Large White Onion Sliced
200g Mushrooms Sliced
1 Red Bell Pepper Sliced
1 Yellow Bell Pepper Sliced
1 Clove Garlic Minced
1 Tbsp Smoked Paprika
¼ Tsp Dried Cumin
1 Tbsp Tomato Purée
1 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
200ml Chicken Stock
100g Crème Fraiche
Salt & Black Pepper
A Handful of Fresh Flat Leaf Parsley
240g Dried Weight Wholegrain Basmati Rice
Prepare the rice according to the packet instructions. Take the crème fraiche from the fridge & measure it into a bowl which will allow it to come up a bit closer to room temperature for a while before using to avoid it splitting the sauce, place the remaining crème fraiche back in the fridge. Meanwhile heat a large frying pan over a medium heat & spray with spray oil. Fry the pork fillet pieces until sealed on both sides & cooked through approximately 8 minutes. Remove the pork & set aside in a bowl. Re spray the pan with spray oil & add the onion, peppers & mushrooms and sauté until softened about 6 to 8 minutes. Add the garlic and continue to cook for 30 seconds to a minute. Add the pork back to the pan with the peppers, onions and mushrooms and sprinkle over the paprika and cumin, continue to cook for 30 seconds to a minute. Season with salt & pepper and add the chicken stock, tomato purée and Worcestershire sauce, mix well. Cover with a lid & simmer over a medium heat for about 5 minutes or so. Remove the lid & continue to cook for 10 to 15 minutes until the stock has reduced down to a more sauce like consistency. Remove the pan from the heat & gently stir through the crème fraiche, sprinkle with the torn fresh parsley leaves and serve immediately with the rice and enjoy!
Creamy Broccoli & Cauliflower Soup all ready for tomorrow, lunch game is on point! Continue reading
Happy World Pasta Day! The perfect excuse to whip up one of my favourite pasta dishes, not that I ever need an excuse to have pasta, I absolutely adore the stuff and would eat it every day if I could get away with it! I love linguine it’s flatter than spaghetti and holds a creamy sauce much better. This gorgeous recipe features juicy plump sun-dried tomatoes and creamy mozzarella with basil and a real fresh cream sauce, yes cream, light cream but cream nonetheless! This is filling, comforting and remarkably healthy at just 10 propoints per serving (if you use wholewheat spaghetti instead you can have it for 5 propoints on filling and healthy). Here’s the skinny:
184g (cooked weight) of linguine
50g sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil
35g light mozzarella
1/2 a red onion diced
1 clove garlic
30ml light cream
Fresh basil leaves
A small sprinkle of chilli flakes
Salt and black pepper
Cook the pasta according to packet instructions in boiling salted water. Rinse the oil off the sun-dried tomatoes if desired and chop into small bite-size pieces. Spray a medium saucepan with oil and fry the onion for approximately five minutes until soft. Crush in the garlic clove and cook for further 30 seconds. Add the sun-dried tomatoes and heat through for one minute. Add the cream and chilli flakes and season with salt and pepper. Loosen the creamy sauce with a couple of tablespoons of the pasta cooking water. Drain the pasta and stir into the sauce mixing well. Tear in the fresh basil leaves and stir through the mozzarella torn into chunks and serve immediately. Enjoy!
Soup is my ultimate go to lunch, it is the best filling meal by miles for very little points indeed. Variety is key when it comes to soups as if you eat the same one constantly you are going to get very bored of it very quickly. This particular soup is especially filling due to the potatoes. A perfect lunchtime stop gap to erase the hunger pangs and it’s lunch sorted for several days in one go! Happy days! This makes 4 to 5 servings at 2 propoints (it’s free on filling & healthy). Here’s the skinny.
400 g potatoes peeled and cubed
2 leeks sliced and washed
1 onion finely diced
1 clove garlic
1 chicken stock cube
1 1/2 pints of boiling water
142mls skimmed milk
2 bay leaves
Salt and pepper Fry the onion & leeks in a saucepan sprayed with oil over a medium heat for approximately five minutes until softening. Add the crushed garlic and continue to fry for 30 seconds. Add everything else except the milk to the pot, season with salt and pepper and simmer for about 20 minutes until the potatoes are soft. Remove from the heat and remove the bay leaves. Blend with a hand blender and pour in the milk stirring well. Return to the heat, if serving immediately, for a couple of seconds to gently heat through the milk. This will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3/4 days, it is also suitable for freezing. Enjoy!
Does comfort food get any better than pie! I fancied pie for Sunday dinner and that’s exactly what I had. Pie doesn’t have to be calorie laden, you can skinny it up and still enjoy it on plan. I didn’t even make the pastry I bought light ready rolled pastry. Who has time to make pastry, am I right? This fabulous version has a gorgeous home-made mustard and parsley sauce infused with onion, bay leaves & peppercorns. It can be yours for just 11 pro points (or 6 on filling and healthy) how good is that! I served mine with mashed carrots and steamed greens. This makes 4 very generous portions. I won’t lie there are a few steps to this one & it takes a little time but it is so totally worth it!
400g Chicken fillet diced
4 Bacon Medallions chopped into small lardons
2 Medium Leeks Sliced (discard the very hard bit at the top of the leaves)
200g Jus Roll Ready Made Light Pastry
1 Egg Yolk
For the Sauce:
1 Pint of Skimmed Milk
½ an Onion
2/3 Bay Leaves
½ Tsp Dijon Mustard
30g Low Fat Butter (I use Connacht Gold)
Place the milk in a medium saucepan over a medium heat, add in the onion half sliced in two, some black peppercorns & the bay leaves and bring to a gentle simmer. Add in the diced chicken & poach the chicken gently in the milk for about 10 minutes until fully cooked through. Remove the chicken to a bowl with a slotted spoon & strain the milk into a jug through a sieve to remove the onion, peppercorns & bay leaves. Cover the milk with cling film so it doesn’t form a skin & set aside. Meanwhile fry the leeks in a large frying pan sprayed with oil for about 5 minutes until soft. Remove from the pan & fry the bacon pieces for about 5 minutes until cooked through & add the chicken & leeks back in, season with salt & black pepper & take off the heat. To make the sauce melt the butter over a low heat & add the flour, stir until the mixture forms a smooth paste, cook for 2 minutes to remove any floury taste & very gradually stir the milk in a little at a time whisking continually to avoid any lumps. Keep whisking until the sauce eventually thickens (this does take quite a while same as packet sauces so don’t lose heart it will thicken. Mix the mustard & chopped parsley into the sauce. Set the sauce aside to cool & cover with film so it doesn’t form a skin. When cool pour the sauce over the leek, chicken & bacon mixture. Turn out into an ovenproof dish. Whisk the egg yolk in a cup & brush onto the edge of the dish so the pastry sticks. Carefully roll the pastry out a tiny bit with a rolling pin so it’s just big enough to cover the pie dish with a small edge. Don’t roll it too hard or it will stick to your table! Carefully lift it up & cover the pie filling crimping the edges around the edge of the pie dish. Brush the remaining egg yolk evenly over the pastry so it goes beautifully brown when baked. Cut a small incision in the middle of the pie to allow steam to escape whilst it’s cooking & place in a preheated oven at 200c for 40 minutes. If your oven is a slight bit uneven as mine is turn the pie halfway through the cooking time to ensure it browns evenly. Slice into 4 large portions & serve with vegetables of your choice, I served mine with mashed carrots & tender stem broccoli & enjoy!