Mushroom Stroganoff

So day 4 of my slow cooker challenge and I’ve been really enjoying it! Everything just feels a little more organised and there is much less cleaning up to do too!

So tonight we had mushroom stroganoff or rather the adults did as neither kids are fans of mushrooms and Stevie had swimming so had her chicken and sweetcorn pizza.

We served this up with a portion of brown rice to make a quick, easy, delicious low calorie meal.

Ingredients

  • 400g Mixed Mushrooms
  • 2 shallots chopped
  • 200ml Vegetable Stock (I used Knorr reduced salt Vegetable Stock – 1 tbsp. mixed with 200ml water)
  • 2tsp Paprika
  • 1 Can Condensed Mushroom Soup
  • 4 garlic cloves crushed

Literally throw everything into the slow cooker – that really is all the prep you need! Perfect if you are in a rush and pop on low for 4-5 hours. Note: If you will be out of the house for longer than that it is worth investing in a timer plug so you can set it to come on when required! So there really is no excuse not to take advantage of using a slow cooker!

I also purchased a Fungi Fusions Ensalada from Asda which was £2 and meant I could have a variety of different mushroom types in this dish without too much messing around.

Mushroom Stroganoff

Overall absolutely delicious! I am really surprising myself! Although Friday we are supposed to be having lentil dhal but I think the hubby might be treating me with something different… we shall see!

Nutrition

  • 246 Calories
  • 13.8g Fat (of which 1.5g saturates)
  • 21.2 Carbs (of which 13.3g dietary fibre)
  • 9.3g Protein
  • 72.8% Vitamin A
  • 10.2% Vitamin C
  • 3.2% Calcium
  • 9% Iron
Advertisements

Sweet Asian Chicken

So I’m into day 3 of my slow cooker challenge and I have to say I am really enjoying it.

I was up early this morning to have breakfast with the husband as we have been like ships passing in the night recently, so the early start gave me chance to get this dish prepped before the school run.

Ingredients

  • 400g Chicken breast (I used Muscle Food Chicken breast as they aren’t pumped full of water – you may need to increase the weight if using supermarket bought)
  • 4tbsp Light Soy Sauce
  • Small Onion Chopped (I always use red just because I prefer them)
  • 250ml Fresh Orange Juice (I used my Sage Juicer to get really fresh juice)
  • 200g (approx. 2 carrots) cut into batons
  • 15g (approve 1tsp) Corn Flour made into a paste
  • 1/2 tsp Coconoil (or 1 tsp Olive Oil)
  • 2 Garlic Cloves Crushed
  • 4 tbsp. Honey
  • Sprinkle of crushed chillies
  • Additionally I added 30g Linwoods Ground Flaxseed, Sunflower, Pumpkin & Sesame Seeds

Literally put everything into the slow cooker – no pre-cooking required and pop the slow cooker on low for 6-7 hours.

I served with brown rice and an extra portion of veggies.

Although this was a really nice dish I didn’t get the taste of ‘sweet Asian’ that I was expecting. The sauce came out a little more like the one you get with Hunter’s Chicken. Perhaps next time I will add some lime juice and some palm sugar to sweeten up a little more.

Well you have the basics so go experiment!

p.s. The kids both ate it – I just gave them with a little less sauce

Sweet Asian Chicken

Nutritional

Serves 4

  • Calories 265
  • Fat 5.3g of which 1.3g saturates
  • Carbs 30.3 of which 4.7g dietary fibre
  • Protein 26.1g
  • Vitamin A – 2.5%
  • Vitamin C – 56.8%
  • Calcium – 3.8%
  • Iron – 3.8%

Additionally on Monday night I had a little baking session (I will sit down and relax one day!) using recipes from one of my favourite health and food bloggers Nic’s Nutrition. Cue a lovely little stash of Chocolate Protein Brownies and No Bake Peanut Butter Protein Balls to keep me on the straight and narrow and keep my sugar cravings at bay!

Sweet Potato Chocolate Brownies

Peanut Butter Protein Balls

Related articles

Chickpea & Courgette Tagine

So we’re into day 2 of my slow cooker challenge (and being organised) and here is today’s recipe for Slow Cooker Chickpea & Courgette Tagine. This recipe is packed with nutritious veg ensuring that you get your 5 a day whilst also dosing you up with plenty of vitamins. It is in fact packed with over 80% of your daily requirement of Vitamin C per serving! Great for keeping those colds at bay!

If you don’t have all the ingredients you can substitute for something else – don’t be afraid not to make a dish just because you don’t have all the exact ingredients – many of my dishes have been born from not having what the recipe books say!

I think this recipe would also be perfect as a baby / toddler food – all you would need to do is puree or mash up a little once cooked and there you have some perfect healthy meals for your little one which can be frozen and used at a later date!

Tagine Ingredients

Ingredients

  • 400g/14oz can chickpeas in water, rinsed and drained
  • 1 red pepper, deseeded and thickly sliced
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 Sweet Potatoes – peeled and cut into bite sized pieces (alternatively you could use a small butternut squash)
  • 2 courgettes, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp. Coconoil (or 2 tbsp. olive oil)
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp ground gingers
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 500g/1lb 2oz carton passata
  • 12 Dried Apricots
  • 2 tsp honey, plus a drizzle to serve
  • 1 tsp harissa paste
  • handful fresh mint or coriander
  • Total Greek Yoghurt – to serve
  • Crushed chillies to spice up if desired.

Method

  1. Place the chickpeas, pepper, onion, potatoes and courgetted into the slow cooker and season with salt and pepper if desired.
  2. Heat the oil in a frying pan and fry the garlic and spices until fragrant for about a minute. Add the passata, honey and harissa and bring to the boil.
  3. Pour the sauce into the slow cooker and mix.
  4. Cover with the lid and cook on low for 6-7 hours – perfect to pop in first thing in a morning so it’s ready for the evening. Alternatively if you want to speed things up pop it on high for 4-5 hours.
  5. To serve – season to taste. Tear up the mint or coriander leaves (I only had dried coriander) and stir through. Drizzle with a little oil if desired and honey.
  6. Top with a little more honey.
  7. If you want to make this dish go further serve with some couscous on the side.
  8. Overall even with the spices this is not a spicy dish and is perfect for kids (the 8 year old ate it and she is the fussiest out of the two – the youngest didn’t have any as she had not long eaten at nursery) so for those who like their dishes a little hot and don’t have kids to think about chuck in some more spices such as crushed chillies (you can also do this after!)

Tagine

tagine serving

Finally, the quantities of this dish made far more than we needed as a family of 2 adults and 2 kids aged 8 and 2 so with the remaining dish I chucked into my new Kenwood Food Processor and whizzed it up into a winter warming soup by adding some crushed chillies and some extra water to thin it out! That’s tomorrow’s lunch sorted! Although I think I need some new soup friendly Tupperware!

The bonus was cleaning up after dinner was done in record time… I’m starting to love this slow cooking business!

tagine soup

Nutritional

  • Serves 6 (this was enough for me with some pitta breads)
  • Calories 161
  • Fat 2.4g of which 0.8g saturates
  • Carbs 25.9g (dietary fibre 6g, sugars 9.5g)
  • Protein 6.4g
  • Vitamin A – 38.7%
  • Vitamin C – 81%
  • Calcium – 4.7%
  • Iron – 8.3%

Muscle Food Review

I have been wanting to try MuscleFood products for a good while and upon my return from Bangkok I did just that.

I have a Protein Discount Card and one of the offers included a MuscleFood Super Lean Meat Bundle for £55 – usual price £85!

This included the following…

• 2kg-2.3kg Chicken Breasts (15-18 breasts)
• 4 x 6-7oz Irish Grass Fed Sirloin Steaks
• 6 x 6-7oz Hache Steaks
• 1 x 500g Extra Lean British Beef Mince
• 1 x 500g Diced Turkey Pure Breast
• 1 x 400g Diced Lean Great British Beef
• 4 x 100g Prime Pork Loin Steaks
• 1 x  Award Winning Corn Fed Chicken 1.3kg

I also got a free 1L carton of Egg Whites using Protein Cards unique discount code too! RRP £4 (you can pay this for a pack less than half the size!) and a free pack of Sweet Thai  Protein Crisps RRP £1.75.

MuscleFood Order

Of course, MuscleFood promise to beat the supermarkets when it comes to value, so I did a little costing up…

For all the items I got above I had a look to see how much this would cost me at ASDA. I was able to source everything aside from the Hache Steaks which are available to buy in Waitrose. The total cost of this shop came to £88.04! £3.04 more than it would have cost at MuscleFood had I have not got the discount. So I actually saved a lot more by only paying £55 for this bundle – over £33 in fact! This does not include the free items!

BUT there is more…

The meats that come from MuscleFood have no added salt or water and therefore what you see is what you get and it means the meat goes a long way when it comes to cooking for a family or batch cooking. The chicken breasts are huge for example!

Delivery

The delivery comes at a day to suit you and are delivered in a tough exterior box with an insulated inner box which also have hydrated ice blocks placed within the order. Mine was delivered early on in the day but it was later in the evening before I was unable to unpack and still the ice packs were cold and in most parts still frozen. Delivery is within 24 hours but the boxes are designed to stay cool for 72 hours – just in case of any issues (which I haven’t experienced).

The items are also delivered in vacuum sealed bags aside from the hache steaks, which results in much less room needed in the fridge / freezer and a lot less packaging waste which means ordering from MuscleFood is a great way to stock up and made even more savings!

MuscleFood Box

MuscleFood Inner Box

MuscleFood also offer free delivery when you spend over £75, therefore I added an extra carton of egg whites and some duck breasts.

So far we have tried the following…

Minced Beef

We have been having minced turkey in our lasagnes as we were finding that supermarket mince beef was gristly and chewy. I made up a lasagne using MuscleFood‘s minced beef and it was amazing – the husband can be quite fussy when it comes to meat, but no complaints – he had a double helping!

Hache Steaks

The order arrived upon my return from Bangkok and looking for something tasty, quick and nutritious to make I opted for these. Served with grilled mushrooms and sweet potato wedges! The steaks didn’t lose any size whilst cooking and were unbelievably tasty! They were actually huge and I could have settled for half of one!

Duck Breasts

Again, a great size, didn’t shrink whilst cooking and had I have not cooked it for too long I imagine it would have tasted a million times better! The husband is better at cooking things like duck breasts and steak so I have asked him for a lesson!

Corn Fed Chicken

I admit I felt a little hesitant when receiving the chicken. I have never purchased a corn fed chicken before so obviously the colour of it looks a little strange to what I expect as standard from a chicken and also the fact that it was vacuum packed made the chicken look a little squashed. Although it tasted perfectly edible I’m not sure I can get my head around the colour and I kept checking whilst eating to ensure it was cooked through. Also it’s a push to feed a family of 4 from the breast, so I think I’ll be sticking to all the other meats from MuscleFood.

Corn Fed Chicken

Protein Crisps

I wanted to really enjoy these but unfortunately didn’t. I felt that they were quite dry and to some extent left a powdery texture in the mouth. It was only when getting to the bottom of the pack (I was hungry) that the taste of the Sweet Thai started to come through. Unfortunately they won’t be on any future orders so I’ll be sticking with the meat!

Protein Crisps

Egg Whites

Today I made some protein pancakes and used the carton of egg whites! Just as good as another brand available in Sainsbury’s and Tesco and much better value!

Fancy trying Muscle Food?

Click on any of the MuscleFood referral links or enter Referral Code KC13301 and you can choose from the following for free…

  • x4 Chicken Breasts
  • x4 Protein Crisps
  • x1 Protein Ready Meal OR
  • x1 Protein Bread

Give them a go… you won’t be disappointed!

www.musclefood.com

Spicy Lentil Soup – #MeatFreeMonday

As we are still getting the house in order meals need to be quick and easy with as little preparation as possible mainly to save time so we can focus on getting everything sorted AND getting to bed before midnight!

Last night in particular I was exhausted as I think I am still a little jetlagged (in this last fortnight I have been in Bangkok, Dublin and Belfast) plus I have a 2 year old with a terrible cough that is struggling to sleep on a night (the night before I actually slept on her bedroom floor!).

So the kids were off to bed early – around 7pm – they had already eaten earlier at nursery / coming in from school. The husband was fitting more handles to the kitchen cupboards so I made a start on chucking something together with the various ingredients I had available and my spicy lentil soup was born.

Spicy Lentil Soup - #MeatFreeMonday

I always buy packs of lentils with good intentions but never quite know what to do with them… so I did this which resulted in our first #MeatFreeMonday

Ingredients

  • 1 Onion Chopped (I used a red onion)
  • 1tbsp coconut oil (or olive)
  • 1-2 tbsp. Thai Red Curry Paste
  • 300g Red Lentils
  • 1.5l vegetable stock
  • 200ml coconut milk

Method

  • Fry the onion in the coconut oil until soft.
  • Stir in the red curry paste – depending on how hot you want it – I went for 2 tbsp.
  • Add the lentils and mix to coat in the paste.
  • Pour over the vegetable stock and simmer for around 20 minutes until the lentils are tender.
  • Add the coconut milk
  • Take half of the soup and whizz with a blender to puree some of the lentils (if you prefer no lumps in your soup you could puree all of it).
  • Serve!

This gives 4 generous servings

Nutritional

  • 412 calories per serving
  • Protein – 20.6g
  • Fat – 16.1g (of which 12.8g saturates)
  • Carbs – 48.7g (of which 22.9g dietary fibre
  • Iron – 13%

It’s quite high up there where the calories are concerned but just look at the amount of protein you are getting from this dish!

Definitely a new fave in our household – the husband asked why I had never introduced him to lentils before!

Chorizo & Cabbage Salad

I know this combination might sound a little bizarre, but it’s a take on the Smokey Broccoli Salad from the #BetterWithBRITA cooking campaign.

Find out more here and how to win your own BRITA Marella Water Jug!

So on to the recipe

You can find the actual recipe details for the Smokey Broccoli salad here, but the details below relate to my take on it due to not having the required ingredients.

Chorizo & Cabbage Salad

Ingredients

  • 1 cabbage – as many full leaves as possible cut into strips
  • 1 Red Onion thinly sliced
  • 1 Garlic clove thinly sliced
  • 1/2 Red Chill sliced
  • 100g Green Lentils (need soaking overnight!) or Puy Lentils
  • 500g Chicken Stock (I use Knorr Reduced Salt) made with BRITA Filtered Water
  • 200g Chorizo Sausage
  • 10g butter

Directions

Firstly ensure you have soaked your lentils in BRITA filtered water overnight, make sure you allow plenty of water!

To prepare bring the chicken stock to the boil and then add the lentils that have been soaking overnight.

They will need a good 45 minutes to cook so whilst they are cooking you can prepare the rest of the ingredients.

When nearing the end of the lentils cooking time bring a pan of BRITA filtered water to the boil and cook the cabbage for 5 minutes. At the same time put the Chorizo in the oven to cook (mine took 10 minutes so check your cooking directions)

In a frying pan heat the butter then add the remaining ingredients and cook through. Once the Chorizo is cooked, slice and add it to the pan and allow to simmer.

Then drain the cabbage and lentils, put in a bowl and if required season with olive oil. I added a little sesame oil as I’ve run out of Olive Oil (big shop when I get back from my holidays!)

Serve onto a warmed plate then top with the Chorizo mix and serve!

Enjoy… we had an unexpected surprise at just how delicious this dish was!

Chorizo & Cabbage Salad Final

Nutritional Information – Serves 2

  • 521 calories per serving
  • 42.9g Fat!!! (Sorry but we all need a treat once in a while!)
  • 15.8g of which Saturates
  • 28.3g Carbs
  • 9.8g Dietary Fibre
  • 34.3g Protein (See some good in here!)
  • Vit A – 37.8%
  • Vit C – 66.7%
  • Calcium – 7.8%
  • Iron – 17.5%

Perhaps not the healthiest of dishes I usually create but sometimes its great to have something you fancy every now and again and if you eat great during the rest of the day there is no reason why you can’t enjoy this!

 

 

Spicy Seabass Supper

Believe it or not, I never used to be a lover of fish that is unless it was fish and chips!

But as I have opened myself up to experiencing new tastes fish has to be one of my firm favourites when it comes to food!

Here you will find a very low calorie fish supper which you can bulk further by adding a side serving of vegetables or sweet potatoes.

What you need…

Spicy Seabass Supper

  • Sea Bass Fillets
  • 1 Carrot – sliced using a julienne peeler
  • 4 Spring Onions sliced
  • 1/2 Chilli Pepper – I used green as I only had this in.
  • 100ml Fish Sauce
  • 1 tsp. Reduced Salt Soy Sauce
  • Sprinkle of crushed chillies
  • 15ml Sesame Oil – to cook the fish
  • 1 tsp Harissa Pasta or Five Spice to be rubbed onto the skin of the sea bass
  • Thumb sized Ginger Root finely chopped & Sliced
  • 1 Garlic clove finely chopped and sliced

Place the fish sauce, half of the spring onions, garlic, ginger, chilli pepper and chilli flakes into a saucepan and bring to the boil. Once boiling add the Soy Sauce.

Sebass Sauce

Whilst waiting for the sauce to boil put the sesame oil in a griddle of similar pan and ensure it is hot.

Once the griddle is hot place the sea bass skin side down pushing the sea bass into the griddle to firm up. You only need to do this for about a minute. Leave cooking on the skin side for approximately 5 minutes and add the remainder of the spring onions and the carrots to the griddle.

Seasbass Pan

Once cooked take some of the carrots and make a bed for the sea bass.

Place the sea bass skin side up on the bed of carrots, then add the remainder of the carrots and spring onion on top. Pour over the sauce and serve!

Spicy Seabass Supper Served

Enjoy!

Nutritional Information – Serves 2

  • 207 Calories per serving
  • 9g Fat  of which 2g Saturates
  • 11g Carbs
  • 2g Fibre
  • 22g Protein
  • Vit A – 49%
  • Vit C – 59%
  • Calcium – 1%
  • Iron – 2%