Beef & Hash Brown Casserole

Beef & Hash Brown Casserole

Oh you are going to love this one! A cheeky little casserole dish that is full of flavour and great for the whole family. This is definitely a dish for my comfort food list.

Serves 4

500g Minced Scottish beef

1 Yellow onion, finely chopped

1 Tsp minced garlic

1/2 Tsp Cayenne pepper

Salt & Black pepper

2 Tsp flour

100ml Beef stock

150g Grated cheese

Handful of Frozen peas

4 Slices of smoked bacon, cut into bite size pieces

10-12 Small Hash Brown Waffles cut in half or quartered

  1. Preheat oven to 210 deg.
  2. In a fry pan add a little oil and fry the onions & bacon with the garlic, add the beef, season with salt & pepper and cook through until browned, add in the cayenne pepper and flour and stir then pour in the beef stock, bring to the boil and simmer for 2 minutes.
  3. Fold in the peas and half of the grated cheese, transfer to an oven proof dish then top with the remaining cheese and hash browns. Bake in the oven for about 25-30 minutes until golden brown. Enjoy!


Cheeseburger Flatbread Pizza

Cheeseburger Flatbread Pizza

Simple Meal that combines 2 family favourites, Pizza & Cheeseburgers! What is not to love about this one? Simple & quick to make, full of flavours and textures and fully satisfying & filling. Great for a quick family midweek meal or a weekend dish.

Serves 4

500g Minced Scottish beef

2 Tsp Tomato ketchup

1 Tsp Worcestershire sauce

2 Tsp Whole grain mustard

Salt & Black pepper

4 Flatbreads (pita breads)

6 Tbsp of tomato passata or pizza Sauce

Chopped small red onion

1 Pepper, chopped into bite size pieces

Small Handful of cherry or grape tomatoes, halved

80-100g Cheddar cheese, grated

  1. Preheat your oven to 230 deg.
  2. Heat a little oil in a fry pan and fry the minced beef until browned and cook through. Add to the the pan the ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, mustard and pepper, mix.
  3. Place the Flatbreads (Pitas) onto a baking tray and top each bread with about 1 tbsp of passata sauce leaving approx 1/2 inch border then top with the minced beef, onion, pepper, grated cheese and tomatoes, season then bake in the oven for about 8-10 minutes until crisp. Enjoy!


Harissa Spiced Meatball Pitas with Carrot Slaw

Meatball Pitas

This is a super simple dish that’s full of flavour. Great for the whole family, simply make the meatballs and the carrot slaw and let the family dive in and fill their pits as much as they like. Yum!

Serves 4

500g Minced Scottish Beef

2 Tsp Paprika

1 Tsp Ground Coriander

2 Tsp Harissa Paste (I use the Rose Harissa)

150g Natural Greek Yogurt

Salt & Pepper to taste

2-3 Large carrots – peeled and cut into thin strips or grated

1/2 Tsp fresh ginger

Handful Fresh coriander, chopped

4 Pitas, halved

  1. In a bowl combine the minced beef, paprika, ground coriander, salt & pepper and roll into small 1″ balls. Heat a little oil in a fry pan and cook the meatballs until browned and cooked through, about 8-10 minutes.
  2. Combine the yogurt and harissa in a bowl and set aside
  3. Heat a little oil in a separate pan, fry on medium heat the carrots and ginger until carrots are slightly crispy, may need to do this in batches. Once crispy add in the chopped fresh coriander and mix
  4. Warm up your pitas then stuff them with the meatballs then the harissa sauce and top with the carrot slaw. Enjoy!


Chicken & Kale Lasagne

Chicken & Kale Lasagne

My lovely neighbour came across with some fresh Kale the other day from her garden, so I decided to give a Chicken & Kale Lasagne a go, and this was delicious, full of flavour, nutritious and filling all at the same time. Another great wee recipe that the family can share.

Kale contains fiber, antioxidants, calcium, vitamins C and K, iron, and a wide range of other nutrients that can help prevent various health problems. Antioxidants help the body remove unwanted toxins that result from natural processes and environmental pressures. It’s low in calories, low in fat, high on protein and potassium too, so a good all rounder vegetable to add to you diet.

Recipe makes 2 portions

For the Filling:-

2 Chicken Breasts

1 Bunch of kale

1 Carrot, grated

1 Leek, thinly sliced

1 Clove garlic, crushed

1/4 Tsp Nutmeg

1/2 Tsp Smoked Paprika

200g Chicken Stock

Salt & Pepper to season

Lasagne Sheets

For the Sauce (or you can use a Bechamel instead if you prefer):-

300ml Creme Fraiche

150g Grated Cheese (of your choice, I used a mild cheddar) plus 50g optional for topping

  1. Season chicken breasts and place in a pan with the chicken stock, bring to the boil then simmer for about 45 mins – 1 hour, then shred with 2 forks. Most of the stock should have evaporated.
  2. Pre-heat your oven to 180 deg.
  3. Blanch the kale in boiling water for about 1 minute, drain and slice into fine pieces.
  4. Add to the pan the leeks, kale & carrot along with seasoning, garlic & nutmeg, stir through until mixed and warmed, a few minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, in a separate pan mix on a low heat the creme fraiche & cheese to make a smooth sauce. Do not allow to boil or the creme fraiche will curdle.
  6. In an oven proof dish, layer your lasagne, chicken filling first then lasagne sheets, then more filling, then lasagne sheets. Pour over your sauce mix evenly and finish with extra cheese and little sprinkle of smoked paprika. Bake in an oven for 45 minutes or until topping is browned and bubbling.
  7. Serve & Enjoy.

Haggis, Leek & Beetroot Lasagne

Haggis, Leek & Beetroot Lasagne

The Noble Haggis is a traditional Scottish dish, it is positively celebrated especially on 25th January each year, the birthday of Robert (Robbie/Rabbie) Burns whose 18th century poem ‘Address to a Haggis’ was instrumental in ensuring the Haggis’s place in the nations hearts.

Haggis is made from the meat & insides of sheep consisting of the heart, liver and lungs then combined with onions, oatmeal, suet, seasoning & spices. The mix is then stuffed into the sheep’s lining of the stomach and boiled. Haggis, Neeps & Tatties is the most common dish but I have been experimenting with what more we can do with this traditional food. This dish is definitely now on my Top list of comfort dishes, so filling, so satisfying & full of flavour.

Serves 2 large/ 4 small portions

450g Haggis, chopped into bite size pieces

300ml Creme Fraiche

150g Tangy White Cheese, grated

1 Leek, sliced

150g Cooked Beetroot (not pickled) – (dry with kitchen paper and using a kitchen glove, grate it coarsely)

Lasagne Pasta Sheets

Cracked Black/ Rainbow Pepper

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180 deg c.
  2. Combine the creme fraiche and half the cheese, warm through in a pan on low heat to form a smooth sauce (do not boil as it will cause the creme fraiche to curdle), set aside.
  3. Put a little spray oil in a pan and gently fry the leeks until softened. Add in the haggis and beetroot, mix through until combined and warmed through.
  4. Pile half the haggis mixture into an ovenproof dish, arrange the pasta sheets on top, then the remaining haggis onto the pasta sheets and then another layer of pasta sheets. Cover the top with the white sauce, season with pepper and sprinkle over the remaining cheese. Bake for about 35 minutes until bubbling and golden. Remove & Enjoy.

Haggis, Leek & Cheesy Potato Pie

Haggis, Leek & Cheesy Potato Pie

This is definitely one for my Top 10 home comfort food dishes.

Love it or loathe it, haggis is firmly established as Scotland’s national dish – to the extent that it has become an indelible part of the nation’s cultural identity, along with whisky, bagpipes and shortbread.

The savoury meat pudding – consisting of sheep’s offal (most commonly lungs) mixed with suet, oatmeal, onion and spices, then boiled in a bag.

“Gie her a Haggis” – Robert Burns helped popularise haggis in Scotland

The Burns connection goes back to his 1786 poem ‘Address to a Haggis’, in which he immortalised the dish as the “great chieftain o the puddin’-race”.

In the 232 years since Burns committed his love of haggis to poetry, the dish has become a symbol of Scottishness, and is traditionally served with neeps and tatties (turnip & mashed potato) – along with a dram of Scotch of course.

My local butcher Forbes Raeburn in Huntly makes amazing Haggis & inspired by a chef in Dumfries from the Caven’s Arms, I just had to give this dish a try. Their Haggis, Leek & Cheese Melt is so tasty. I am now curious as to what other flavours compliment Haggis so watch this space.


Serves 4

600g Haggis

4 Leeks, sliced

4-5 Large Floury Potatoes, peeled and chopped into chunks. I used Scotty Brand (you could also use King Edward or Maris Piper)

100g Grated Cheese, I use Cambus O’May Cheese as it has a creamy texture and strong flavour, perfect for Haggis (any good Cheddar would also work)

3 Tbsp Butter

Salt & pepper to taste

  1. Cook the Haggis as per packet instructions.
  2. Melt 1 tbsp of butter in a pan on medium heat and saute the leeks until soft.
  3. Place potatoes in a pan of water, bring to the boil then simmer until soft. Mash with 1 Tbsp of butter. Season.
  4. Pre heat your oven to 180 deg.
  5. Spread the cooked haggis into a casserole dish, then layer the leeks and mix, fork the potatoes over the haggis mixture and sprinkle over the grated cheese. Season with some cracked pepper then place into the oven and cook for about 20-25 minutes until the cheesy potato topping is slightly browned and crispy.
  6. Serve with some fresh vegetables for a nutritious and filling meal.

Creamy Italian Chicken Pasta

Italian Creamy Chicken

I’m feeling all Italian this week….lol! Do you ever get days or weeks where you just have certain cravings? This week it was Italian for me, with Bruschetta at the start of the week (check my classic recipe here https://cookingwithluce.wordpress.com/2021/11/08/classic-bruschetta/ ), and now this fab little pasta dish, I am feeling all Italian Inspired. I even made a cheeky Limoncello Cocktail to finish off (you can view my recipe here..https://cookingwithluce.wordpress.com/2021/07/31/limoncello-spritz-cocktail/ )

This recipe is so easy to make and is packed full of flavour, great one for the whole family, especially as you can adjust your own Chilli portions. I made it a lighter option too with the lower fat Philadelphia and it tasted delicious, you would never know it wasn’t full fat.

Serves 2

2 Chicken Breasts, diced into bite size pieces

100g Wholegrain Pasta

1 White onion, diced finely

1 400g Tin Tomatoes

1 Red pepper, diced

150g Philadelphia Cream Cheese

1 Tsp crushed red chilli flakes

1 Tsp of Italian Seasoning

Handful fresh Basil to serve.

  1. Bring a pan of water to the boil and cook your pasta until soft (about 8-10 minutes)
  2. Meanwhile, in a fry pan on medium heat, season with salt & pepper the chicken and brown, add in the onions and peppers & cook until softened (few minutes). Next add in the chilli and mix.
  3. Pour in the tin tomatoes and Italian seasoning and mix though, reduce to a simmer and cook for about 5 minutes.
  4. Next add in the cream cheese and mix through until melted, then when pasta is ready, drain and add to the pan, mix through until coated and simmer for a few minutes.
  5. Serve with some fresh basil. Enjoy!


Braised Scottish Steak with Root Veg Mash

Braised Scottish Steak with Root Veg Mash

I am always looking for healthier options but without compromise on flavour and enjoy sourcing locally. I started growing my own vegetables last year too and plan to grow more next year, so this recipe uses up homegrown tatties, onions and carrots from my garden (my swede are not quite ready yet).

My local butcher Forbes Raeburn in Huntly provided me with some delicious diced beef this weekend, my initial plan was to make a steak pie for Sundays dinner but having vegetables to use up, this little recipe was the outcome and definitely one I will make over and over again. End of summer is fast approaching and the colder days to set in soon, this recipe is a sure winner for all the family to warm you up from the inside. Very nutritional too as it’s high in protein, low in saturated fat and packs in your vegetable count.


Serves 4

For the Stew

1 Medium Potato, diced small

2 Celery Sticks, chopped small

2 Garlic Cloves, crushed

750g Diced Beef

1 Beef Stock Cube

1 Large Onion (or 2 medium)

1 Carrott, diced small

1 Tsp Dried Thyme

1 Tbsp Tomato Puree

2 Tsps Brown Sauce

2 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce

Salt & Black Pepper to taste

For the Mash

1 Large Potato, chopped & peeled

1 Small Swede, chopped and peeled

3 Large Carrotts, chopped & peeled

Pepper to taste

  1. Preheat your oven to Fan 160 deg.
  2. Spray a casserole pan with low calorie oil on medium heat, add the celery, garlic and 3/4 onions and fry for about 10 minutes or until slightly caramelised. Meanwhile in a fry pan heat spray oil on medium heat, season the beef cubes and fry until browned.
  3. Remove the casserole pan with the veg and add in thyme, tomato puree, brown sauce, Worcestershire sauce, beef stock cube with 700ml boiling water. Puree using a stick blender then add to the casserole pan the beef, potato chunks, chopped carrot and rest of the onion, bring to the boil then cover and transfer to the oven to cook for about 1.5-2 hrs until tender, stirring occasionally.
  4. Meanwhile make the mash, put the potato, swede & carrot into a pan of water and bring to the boil, reduce to simmer and cook for about 45 minutes until tender. Drain and mash then season with pepper.
  5. Serve on the side with the beef stew mix. Enjoy.


Chicken & Bean Bagel Nachos

Chicken & Bean Bagel Nachos

A Healthier Twist to your normal Nacho dish. I had some Bagels left and decided to give this a shot, it worked perfectly adding that little bit of crunch to the bake. Easy to make to & just 30 minutes to bake in total which makes this dish a great quick family meal. I served it with a refreshing homemade spicy salsa which was a great accompaniment.


Serves 4

2 Large Chicken Breasts, cut into bite size pieces

2 Bagels, cut into bite sized pieces

Small head of Broccoli, cut into small pieces

400g Tin of mixed beans (or baked beans)

200g Tin of tinned tomatoes

2 Tsp Smoked Paprika

2 Fresh Tomatoes, diced

1/2 Red Onion, diced

Small handful or chopped coriander

1 Chilli, diced

1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar

1 Lime

1 Avocado, diced

100g Mature Cheddar (lighter option to make it healthier)

2 Tbsp Oil or spray oil

  1. Preheat your oven to 190 deg. Drizzle the bagel pieces with 1 tbsp oil and place on a baking tray lined with baking paper and bake for 15 minutes tossing halfway to brown. Remove from oven.
  2. Meanwhile, spray a fry pan with oil and heat to a medium heat, season the chicken and coat in the paprika then add to warm pan to brown, 10 minutes. Add in the broccoli and mix through for a few minutes. Next add in the beans and tin tomatoes, stir through. Transfer to a baking dish.
  3. Top the chicken mixture with the baked bagels then top with the grated cheese. Place into the oven and bake for about 10 minutes until cheese is melted.
  4. Meanwhile to make the salsa, put the diced tomatoes, chilli, onion, avocado, coriander into a bowl and mix, pour 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar along with half juice of lime and mix through.
  5. Once ready serve with salsa and enjoy.


Salmon, Beetroot & Caramelised Onion Quiche

Salmon, Beetroot & Caramelised Onion Quiche

I was inspired to make this by a recipe posted to Instagram from @theweelarder https://www.instagram.com/theweelarder/?hl=en. As I didn’t have the Tomato Chutney, I decided to use caramelised red onions as I just made a batch from my garden, this dish was so delicious and the sweet flavour from the onions went perfectly with the salmon.

This dish is perfect for these long summer days especially when served with a fresh salad. Can be eaten warm or cold.

Serves 4-6

For the Pastry:-

250g Plain Flour

Pinch Salt

100g Cold Butter

2Tbsps water

For the Filling:-

2 pieces of Fresh Salmon or 250g Pre-packed Smoked Salmon, flaked

4 Tbsp of Caramelised Onion (see here for my homemade recipe https://cookingwithluce.wordpress.com/?p=9446 )

1 large Cooked Beetroot, chopped into small bite size pieces

Handful of finely chopped Spinach (uncooked)

4 Large Eggs

80ml of Single Cream

100ml Milk

2 Tbsp Chopped Dill

Seasoning, Salt & Pepper

  1. To make the Pastry, Sift the plain flour into a bowl and add the butter cubes and salt, with your fingers rub butter into flour to form breadcrumbs. Add 2 tbsp water and bring to together to make a stiff dough. Cover in cling film and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or overnight.
  2. Once pastry is ready, bring to room temperature and roll out onto a floured surface and lay over your quiche tin pressing the pastry to the sides, trim off any excess. Place a piece of greaseproof paper over the pastry and pour in some baking beads to weigh down.
  3. Preheat your oven to 180 deg fan and place pastry in oven for about 15 minutes. Remove the beads and paper, brush the pastry with some egg wash then return the pastry to the oven and bake for a further 5 minutes. Remove and allow to cool.
  4. Whisk up the eggs with the cream & the milk.
  5. Sprinkle some flaked salmon into your pastry case then some spinach then another layer of salmon then spinach and finally the caramelised onion, pour over the egg mixture evenly, season with salt, pepper & dill then dot pieces of the beetroot over.
  6. Place into a preheated oven at 170 deg fan for 30 minutes.
  7. Slice & serve….Yummy!


Smoked Haddock, Beetroot & Potato Hash

Smoked Haddock, Beetroot & Potato Hash

This is a great dish that can be enjoy all year round, as a main meal or a side salad dish. Now that the weather is changing and we will soon be entering the Autumnal period we often crave more substantial dishes & this is one of those dishes. Healthy, filling and very satisfying.

I grow my own potatoes and beetroot, nothing more enjoyable than harvesting your own vegetables and preparing a delicious meal for you & your family. I live in Scotland (as you know) and of course my smoked haddock is fresh from the north sea, I get a door stop delivery every week from my local fishmonger who always has the best to offer.

Takes about 10 minutes to prepare and only 20 minutes to cook. A good quick meal.


Makes 2 Servings

2 Pieces of Smoked Haddock

2 Medium/Large fresh Beetroot (or you can buy the vacuum packed cooked beetroot in supermarkets)

250g Potatoes (I used charlotte)

1 Tbsp of low fat mayonnaise or natural yoghurt (I’m definitely a mayo person, but yoghurt will work too)

50g peas

Salt & Pepper to taste

Handful of Chopped Fresh Dill

  1. If using fresh beetroot, bake in tin foil in an oven at 200 deg fan for 45 minutes (you can check my how to roast beetroot post for further info here – https://cookingwithluce.wordpress.com/2020/08/10/roasted-beetroot-salad/)
  2. Wash potatoes and place in a pan of water, bring to the boil and simmer for 20 minutes until softened. If using peas add to pan 4-5 minutes before ready.
  3. If you have a steamer, steam cook the haddock for about 6-7 minutes, otherwise poach in a pan of milk, bring milk to a simmer, place fish in skin side down and simmer for 7-8 minutes. Remove with slotted spoon. Once cooked break into bite size pieces.
  4. When potatoes are cooked, cut into bite size pieces and place in a bowl with peas, add in chopped beetroot then add in 1 tbsp mayonnaise with salt & pepper to taste, using a spoon mix together to coat. Mix in the smoked haddock and dill.
  5. Serve. Yummy!

Fresh Beetroot


Irn-Bru Chicken Pakora

Irn-Bru Chicken Pakora

I first saw this on Tik-Tok by Myles Omar, https://www.tiktok.com/@mylesomar?lang=en. You can watch the video here https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/scotland-now/tiktok-scots-irn-bru-chicken-23680157

I just had to try this, I love pakora, I love chicken & I love pakora so it was a must. Simple to make and very tasty. I didn’t quite have all the ingredients so here is my version. We enjoyed these pakora bites with sweet chilli dip rather than pakora sauce and was delicious. You have to give these a go.


Makes enough for 4 portions or 2 very large portions

2-3 Chicken Breasts – cut into strips

1 Tbsp Garlic & Ginger Paste

Juice of 1/2 a Lemon

Salt & Pepper to taste

1 Tbsp Fenugreek Powder

1 Tsp Paprika Powder

200g Rice Flour (or gram flour)

1/2 Tsp Biacarbonate of Soda

1 Tsp Chilli Powder

1 Tsp Cumin Powder

1 Tsp Garam Masala

1 Tsp Coriander Powder

3 Tbsp Rapeseed Oil (or vegetable oil)

200ml Irn-Bru

100ml Water

  1. First heat up your oil in a pan or fryer if you have one. (I use Rapeseed oil and heat to about 180-200 deg)
  2. Place the Chicken strips in a bowl, add in the garlic & ginger paste, along with paprika, lemon juice, salt & pepper, mix together and allow to sit and marinade for a few minutes.
  3. Add in the cumin, coriander, garam masala, fenugreek powder, biacarbonate soda, rice flour, oil, water and Irn-Bru, give it a good mix together.
  4. Drop the chicken strips into your hot fryer and cook until browned and crispy (about 8-10 minutes), remove with a slotted spoon or tongs and place onto some kitchen paper to drain the oil.
  5. Serve. Yum….Yum!


Curried Oat Crusted Smoked Haddock Fishcakes

Smoked Haddock Fishcakes

I am so lucky, I recently moved home and now live in an area where you can get some of the freshest fish delivered straight to your door! I am an absolutely lover of all things seafood, well, who wouldn’t living in Scotland! We have 12,000km of coastline with cold clear waters, which has a rich range of over 60 different species, landed from Scottish waters. Scotland has a global reputation for the quality and range of its seafood.

I have a local fish van that delivers straight to my door every week, so this week he had some lovely fresh Smoked Haddock which I just had to get. Initially, I bought it to make my favourite Cullen Skink Soup but we then decided we fancied trying something different. So after scanning my cupboards for ideas, this little Indian spiced fishcake was the outcome. Super tasty and a perfect combo with the smoked haddock. The spices enhanced the flavour of the haddock, a blend of cumin, coriander, garam masala and turmeric works wonders on these fishcakes!


Makes 6 Large ones or 10-12 smaller cakes

600g Smoked Haddock

550g Potatoes (I used Highland Baby potatoes from Scotty Brand, but Maris Pipers are good too)

6-7 Spring Onions – chopped

2 Tbsps Butter

1 Tbsp of Curried Spices (made up from 1/2 tsp ground cumin, ground coriander, garam masala, 1/4 tsp Turmeric)

Salt & Pepper to taste

50g Golden Breadcrumbs

50g Scottish Oats – toast the oats (gently toast in a hot pan, few minutes only, allow to cool)

1 Tbsp Oil

2 Tbsp Flour

1 Egg, whisked

  1. Cook the potatoes until soft, so that you can mash. Best to boil them for about 20 minutes on hob or if you have a steam pot, then Steam cook for about 10 minutes. (I kept the skin on as I feel there is more flavour). Once cooked set aside to cool.
  2. Cook the smoked haddock, I steam cooked mine for about 7 minutes, if you don’t have a steamer then place fish in a pan of milk and cook gently covered for about 8 minutes or until fish is cooked through. (remove liquid and set aside to cool)
  3. Put a tbsp of butter into a pan and saute the spring onions until soft, just a few minutes.
  4. Mash up the potatoes and place in a mixing bowl. Using 2 forks, shred up the cooked fish and place into the bowl with the potatoes, add the spring onions, next add in all your spices and season generously. Get in there with your clean hands and mix through until combined.
  5. Shape the cakes into balls and place on a sheet of baking paper on an ovenproof tray and gently flatten into cakes. (I made mine about 1″ thick) Put into the fridge for about 20-30 minutes.
  6. In separate bowls have your flour, egg & oat/breadcrumb mixture ready. Dip the cake into the flour then into the egg then roll in the oat crumb mixture ensuring fully coated.
  7. Heat a little oil in a fry pan and cook the cakes each side for 2 minutes to seal to oat crumb. Place back onto the baking tray.
  8. Preheat your oven to 200 deg and bake for about 20-25 minutes. Serve with some cool mayo or tomato relish.
  9. These can be frozen and kept up to 3 months too, so great for batch cooking.


Italian Chicken Bake

Italian Chicken Bake

A great way to use up left over chicken after your Sunday Roast. This dish is very easy to bake and healthy too.

This simple and tasty bake will keep you full as it has protein (chicken), fiber (veggies), and fat (cheese). The chicken is smothered with cherry tomatoes, onion and peppers keeping the chicken moist. I used Italian herbs and chilli spice for a wee kick. Delicious!

Prep time is only 10 minutes and 40 minutes in total to cook, so a quick meal to bake. Gluten free too.


Serves 3-4

2 Large Chicken Breasts, cooked & shredded

1 Onion, chopped

1 Red Pepper, chopped

1 Garlic Clove, chopped

Spray Oil

2 Tsp Italian Herb Mix

1 x 400g Tin Chopped Tomatoes

10-12 Cherry Tomatoes, halved

1 Tbsp Sugar

1 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar

1 Tsp Dried Chilli Flakes

125g Mozzarella, grated or sliced

Small handful basil leaves to serve

Salt & Pepper to taste

  1. Preheat oven to 200 deg fan.
  2. In a pan heat the spray oil and fry the onions, pepper and garlic for a few minutes to soften.
  3. Add in the Italian herbs, chilli, tin tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, balsamic vinegar, sugar and season, then simmer for about 20 minutes until sauce has thickened slightly. Stir in the cooked chicken then transfer to a baking dish.
  4. Tear or grate over the mozzarella evenly and bake in the oven for 20 minutes or until the topping is golden and bubbling. Serve with some chopped basil leaves. Plate up with a side of cooked rice, pasta or potatoes.

Italian Chicken Bake with Mozzarella


Chinese Chicken Fried Rice

Chinese Chicken Fried Rice

This was wonderfully flavourful and so easy to make. I do love it when last minute decisions go well. I was planning a completely different dish for my dinner at the weekend and realised I forgot some of the ingredients, so as you do, you make the most of what you have in your cupboards. This was simple to make and using mostly store cupboard ingredients too it was super tasty.

I mean who doesn’t like Fried Rice? At the moment as our favourite restaurant’s are not open due to the pandemic, this is great dish to create your own Chinese takeout food at home. A great dish on its own or as a side dish.


Serves 4

3 Chicken Breasts (skinless)

120ml Teriyaki Sauce

1 Onion, diced

2 Tsp Diced Garlic

3 Tbsp Toasted Sesame Oil

150-200g Rice (I used wholegrain but you can use long grain white or Jasmine which works well)

200g Frozen Peas and Diced Carrots

2 Large Eggs

4 Tbsp Soy Sauce

Salt & Pepper to taste

4-6 Spring Onions for topping, chopped

  1. Heat the sesame oil in a deep pot/pan on medium to high heat and season & brown the chicken breasts.
  2. Add to the pot the garlic & onions and cook for a couple of minutes until softened.
  3. Pour in Teriyaki Sauce, put lid on pan and cook on a very low heat for about 3 hours.
  4. While the chicken is cooking, cook the rice as per instructions and put to the side and allow to cool. TIP: The rice is much better when cooked, cooled and left for a couple of hours.
  5. After 3 hours, slice chicken into smaller pieces (it should flake apart nicely). Add to the pot, the rice, peas, carrots and soy sauce. Stir through and place lid back on pot.
  6. In a fry pan, add a little oil and scramble the eggs, add to the pan when ready, mix & serve with a sprinkle of spring onions on top. Yummy!



Slow Cook Iron Bru Chicken

Slow Cook Iron Bru Chicken

This was absolutely yummy! Thank you to Scott Baptie @ Food for Fitness for this recipe. https://www.foodforfitness.co.uk/welcome/

I had seen this ages ago but never got round to trying it, this weekend was that time. After all it is Scotland’s favourite fizzy drink! Iron Bru is quite a sweet flavour which is hard to describe & I wasn’t sure just how sweet this dish would turn out but I was pleasantly surprised, it was really delicious and definitely would make again. I used the Iron Bru Extra which has 0g sugars so helped make this dish not overly sweet.

Irn Bru
Iron Bru

Iron Bru was launched in Scotland in 1901 and is still a closely guarded family secret recipe with 32 flavours.

It was back in 1901 in Glasgow that steel workers who were working on rebuilding Central Station in Glasgow were drinking too much beer! Yes too much beer! This is when local soft drinks experts AG Barr introduced them to the caffeinated drink to help get them through the night, and ‘Iron Bru’ was born! One of the most memorable adverts on TV ran for over 20 years with the slogan ‘Made in Scotland – from girders’ & the slogan stuck!

Go on, you know you want to….give it a try, trust me, you’ll love it!


Serves 2

2 Chicken Breasts, chopped into bite size pieces

1 Onion, finely chopped

1 Garlic Clove, finely chopped

15ml Worcester Sauce

1 Tbsp Tomato Puree

1 Tsp Smoked Paprika

300ml Iron Bru

1 Tbsp olive oil

Salt & Pepper to taste

1 Tbsp Corn Flour (to thicken sauce after)

100-125g Cooked Rice to serve.

  1. Heat the oil in a pan on medium to high heat and season chicken and add to the pan to brown for a few minutes. Remove, add the onion & garlic to the pan and saute for a few minutes until softened.
  2. Add the chicken back to the pan along with paprika, tomato puree, worcester sauce & Iron Bru, bring to a low simmer, cover with lid and cook on low heat for 4 hours.
  3. Remove chicken from pan to a plate, if sauce is too thin, add the cornflour mixed with a little water and stir through to thicken up the sauce, pour over chicken and serve with some cooked rice of your choice.

Delicious!



Mince HotPot with Sweet Potato & Carrot Mash

Mince Hotpot with Sweet Potato & Carrot Mash

This is proper home comfort food and a dish that we love. Using simple ingredients, you’ll love the richness taste of this and with the sweet potato and carrot mash on top it is just packed with flavour! A great family dish that is simple to make that everyone can enjoy. Sometimes I love going back to basics, our ancestors would have cooked this all in one pot as back then there were no fancy cook tops with loads of rings.

We are lucky that we have access to a wide range of different foods and spices these days, so although sometimes it’s great to make classics, it’s also great to try out new flavours and ideas with them. This recipe surely does work with that little change.

If you make it, let me know what you think?


Makes 2-3 servings

250g Scottish Beef Mince (good quality is key)

2 Medium sized Sweet Potatoes, cut into small chunks

1 Red Onion, diced

1 Carrots, diced & 2 Carrots for mash (chopped)

1 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar

50ml Red Wine (I used Merlot)

1 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce

2 Handfuls of Frozen Garden Peas

300ml Beef Stock with 2 stock cubes

1 Tsp Mixed Herbs

1/2 Tsp Turmeric

Salt & Pepper to taste

1 Tbsp oil

1-2 Tbsp Beef Gravy Granules to thicken sauce

  1. Pre heat oven to 180 deg fan. Place sweet potatoes and carrot into a large pan of slightly salted water and bring to the boil, reduce to a gentle boil and cook for 20 minutes until softened.
  2. Meanwhile, heat a little oil in a pan and cook the onions until softened. Add the mince to the pan and cook until browned. Add in the balsamic vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, red wine, herbs, seasoning and beef stock, bring to the boil and reduce to a simmer for about 10-15 minutes, liquid should reduce by half.
  3. Stir in the peas and cook for a further 5 minutes.
  4. Add in the Gravy granules and stir to thicken.
  5. Mash the sweet potatoes and carrot with 1 tsp turmeric
  6. Place the mince mixture in a casserole dish, season with black pepper and top with the mash mix, cover with tin foil. Bake in oven for about 30 minutes.
  7. After 30 minutes, remove foil and bake for a further 20 minutes or until golden brown.
  8. Serve & Enjoy!


Moroccan Chicken & Lentil Bake

Moroccan Chicken & Lentil Bake

Inspired by North Africa, this quick and easy one pan meal draws the warmth of cumin and rich depth of smoked paprika to beautifully layer with the peppery flavour of the lentils. Lentils are an excellent source of B vitamins, iron, magnesium, potassium and zinc. They’re also a great source of plant-based protein and fiber. To make this dish vegetarian, just omit the chicken and replace with you favourite vegetables.

Another great one pot meal that is not only quick but simple to make too. Very nutritious and filling.


Serves 2

2 Chicken Breasts, cut into large pieces (or you can use thighs)

4 Rashers of Smoked Bacon, chopped small

1 Onion, diced

2 Stalks of Celery, diced

100g Green Lentils (or Red if you prefer)

1 Garlic Clove, diced

1 Tbsp Cumin

1 Tbsp Smoked Paprika

8-10 Whole Cherry Tomatoes

300ml Chicken Stock

1 Tsp Chilli Flakes

Salt & Pepper to taste

1 Tbsp Olive Oil

Small Handful of Chopped Fresh Parsley to serve.

  1. Pre heat your oven to 200 deg Fan.
  2. Add the oil to a fry pan on medium to high heat. Dry the chicken pieces with a piece of kitchen paper and season. Add to the pan and brown all over to seal. Remove with a slotted spoon.
  3. If needed add a little more oil to the pan. Cook the bacon, onions, celery, garlic, cumin & paprika for 3 minutes. Add back the chicken, add the lentils and sprinkle the chill flakes, mix through.
  4. Decant into an oven proof dish, add in the stock and tomatoes, bake in the oven for 25 minutes.
  5. Turn on your grill at the end of cooking for a few minutes to brown the tomatoes.
  6. Remove from oven, sprinkle with parsley and Serve. Yum!


Chicken & Broccoli Bake

Chicken & Broccoli Bake

This is a great mid week dinner when you are short for time, easy to prepare and quick to bake. You can also make ahead and pop in fridge until ready or if you have a delay timer on your oven, pop it in the oven in morning and time for when you are due home. One of my favourite features on my oven is the 24hr programmable timer, I use it all time, I organise myself in the morning then I don’t have to worry about remembering to switch oven on later.

Oven Timer

This dish is healthy and packed with protein and vitamins, it also provides a richness with the Gruyere cheese, what’s not to like?


Serves 3-4

300-400g Broccoli Florets (you can use frozen or fresh)

40g Butter

1 Large White Onion, sliced

350-400g Chicken Breasts, cut into bite sized pieces

100g Creme Fraiche (use light for a healthier option)

200ml Chicken Stock

30g Breadcrumbs (about 2-3 slices)

50g Gruyere Cheese, grated

1 Tsp Dried Chilli Flakes

1 Tsp Dried Mixed Herbs (or any herb of your choice)

Salt & Pepper to taste

  1. Preheat oven to 200deg. Bring a Saucepan of water to the boil and cook the broccoli for 5 minutes, Drain.
  2. Melt the butter in a fry pan on medium to high heat and cook the onions until soft, remove with a slotted spoon.
  3. Season the chicken and add to the pan and brown all over, about 3-5 minutes, set aside.
  4. Add some butter to the fry pan and cook the breadcrumbs until slightly browned. Remove.
  5. Layer up the chicken, broccoli and onions in an oven proof dish, season well. Pour over the chicken stock and creme fraiche, sprinkle the chilli flakes and herbs.
  6. Sprinkle on top the breadcrumbs and finish with the grated cheese.
  7. Bake in the oven for about 35 minutes until golden brown on top. Serve.


Quick Teriyaki Chicken

Teriyaki Chicken

Although I maybe working from home during this pandemic, somehow I still don’t find the time to be preparing and making mid week dinners, so this recipe is a great quick throw together meal that is massively flavorful and satisfying. Only takes 20 minutes. I served it with some Egg Fried Rice. I do have a confession to make, it was microwaveable Egg Fried Rice, after all it only takes 2 minutes and to be honest is a great alternative when you don’t have time to make the real thing. Most brands now offer these ready packets such as Uncle Bens, Tilda, Blue Dragon and even supermarket own brands, they are are a great store cupboard essential or at least they have been during this pandemic lockdown period. Well, we all like to cheat sometimes, don’t we?

If you like it a little sweeter, you can add 1 tbsp of honey to the recipe. I use Heather honey which is a darker semi-sweet honey and delicious, it is made with the nectar collected from the tiny purple bell-shaped flower of the common Scottish Heather plant.


Serves 2

1 Packet 250g Microwave Egg Fried Rice

2 Chicken Breasts, diced into bite sized pieces

1 Tsp Minced Garlic

1 Tsp Oil

1 White Onion, diced

1 Tbsp Cornflour

150ml Good Quality Teriyaki Sauce

2 Tsp Sesame Seeds

1 Handful Garden Peas (I used frozen)

1 Tbsp Honey (Optional)

Salt & Pepper to taste

  1. Heat the oil in a pan on medium to high heat and fry the garlic & onions until softened.
  2. Season the chicken, add to the pan and cook until slightly brown all over.
  3. Add in the garden peas along with 150ml of teriyaki sauce & honey (if using) and about 100ml water, place lid on pan and reduce to a simmer for about 15-20 minutes until chicken is cooked through. If the sauce is too thin, mix the cornflour with a tbsp of water and add to pan stir through to thicken the sauce.
  4. Serve with some cooked rice (of your choice) and sprinkle over some sesame seeds for that extra crunch and nutrition. Yum! Enjoy!


Scottish Heather Honey Chicken

Scottish Heather Honey Chicken

Hello and Happy Wednesday!

Yes, I know what you are thinking, this isn’t chicken? It looks like Beef? That’s because of the soy Sauce and dark honey in the recipe marinating into the chicken.

One pot meals are always my go to when I am working, simply because they are easy and less washing up to do. I used some Scottish Heather Honey for this recipe and oh my……..this was a super tasty meal that I am so proud of. I had 2 recipes in mind to cook tonight, 1 was Honey and Garlic roasted Chicken and the other was a Soy Glazed Chicken, yes, you guessed it, I went for it and mixed it all up. I do love it when you change your mind last minute and get a successful NEW recipe!

Known as the ‘Champagne’ of all honeys, expertly gathered by bees that visit the legendary flower of Scotland, Heather. Scottish Heather Honey is dark and semi-set.  A highly intense, distinctive, warm, woody and floral aroma reminiscent of the Scottish Highlands. I use honey from Heather Hills Farm, they are a family run business based in Blairgowrie, Perthshire since 1945. Click to their website for more details :- http://www.heatherhills.co.uk/.

Pure honey is full of natural antibacterial and antimicrobial goodness. As well as the high antioxidant qualities, manganese plays a role in helping to make and activate enzymes in the body involved in protecting tissues from damage and in the metabolism of nutrients. It also helps maintain healthy bones.


Serves 4

3-4 Large Chicken Breasts, cut into large chunks

1 Red Pepper, diced

1 Yellow Pepper, diced

2 White Onions, cut into wedges

4 Tbsps of Heather Honey (you can use clear honey if you can’t get this)

3 Tbsps of Dark Soy Sauce

2 Tsps Dried Garlic Granules

1 Tbsp Olive Oil

3 Tsps French Mustard

1 Tsp Curry Powder

Salt & Ground Black Pepper

  1. Heat the oil in a pan, season the chicken, add to pan and brown.
  2. Add in the garlic, peppers and onion and cook for a few minutes.
  3. Mix in a jug or bowl the soy sauce, honey, curry powder and mustard. Season.
  4. Pour the sauce mixture over the chicken and vegetables, add 100ml water and stir to combine.
  5. Cover and cook on a low heat for about 2 hours.
  6. Remove lid season if need and cook for a further 20 minutes.
  7. Serve with some boiled potatoes or mash or anything you like. Enjoy!


Quick Chinese Chicken Curry Takeout-style

Chinese Chicken Curry

Due to the Covid 19 Restrictions most of us aren’t able to go visit our favourite restaurants to enjoy our best bites to eat or even get takeaways, so if you fancy a wee curry then this is for you. This 15 minute dish is quick and easy to make, and using staple ingredients that most of us have in our kitchen cupboards, its quicker than phoning a takeaway and can be made more healthier too by adding in your favourite vegetables.

This was a full flavour curry with loads of sauce, great for scooping up the rice. The flavours were so good that my other half said I needed to make this sauce again for his chips….lol! Yes, curry chips is his thing! If you make, let me know what you think.


Serves 4

2 Large Chicken Breasts, cut into bite size pieces

2 White Onions, cut into wedges

Handful of Frozen Garden Peas (optional)

2 Tbsp oil

1 Tsp Soy Sauce

2 Tsp Cornflour

350ml Chicken Stock

4 Tsps Curry Powder

1 Tsp Turmeric

1/2 Tsp Ground Ginger

1/2 Tsp Brown Sugar

Salt & Pepper to taste

50g per person of Cooked Rice (of your choosing) to serve.

  1. Heat 1Tbsp oil in a pan or wok on high heat. Mix together the soy sauce and 1Tbsp oil in a bowl add in the chicken pieces and coat, sprinkle 1 Tsp of cornflour over to coat, season, then add to the hot pan and brown all over, remove with a slotted spoon.
  2. Add the onions to the hot pan and stir fry until softened and slightly brown, about 3-4 minutes.
  3. Add to the pan the Frozen Peas, Curry Powder, Turmeric, Ginger & Sugar, mix through for about 1 minute to release flavours.
  4. Pour in the stock and bring to the boil, mix 1 Tsp cornflour with a little water and slowly pour little at a time into the sauce mix until it starts to thicken slightly. Add back to the pan the cooked chicken and mix through and simmer gently for about 5 minutes.
  5. Serve with cooked rice. Enjoy!


Jamaican Chicken & Rice

Jamaican Chicken & Rice

With the weather being very dreich (dull & gloomy) recently, we wanted to transport ourselves to a warm sunny place & with that not being possible in these unprecedented times I turned to my Kitchen Cupboards to see what I could make for dinner. Having some tinned pineapple, beans and rice in the cupboard we decided on visiting the Caribbean. This dish has a great blend of popular Caribbean spices, such as ginger, paprika and allspice which transports you right onto the Islands.

Also a great dish for batch cooking as you could quite easily make a big pot and freeze for later. A very nutritious dish with the beans high in fiber and the chicken giving you a good intake of protein. A good filling meal for any family table.


Serves 4

2 Chicken Breasts – cut into bite size pieces

1 Red Pepper, diced

1 White Onion, diced

4-6 Spring Onions, diced (for serving)

1 Tbsp Oil for cooking

1 Tbsp Curry Powder

1 Tbsp Smoked Sweet Paprika

1/2 Tsp of AllSpice

1/2 Tsp of Ginger

200g Cooked Wholemeal Rice (about 50g per person)

Juice of 1 Lime

1 Tbsp Brown Sugar

1 Tsp Dried Chilli Flakes

1 Tin Pineapple Chunks

1 400g can of Black Beans, drained

Handful of Garden Peas

20-30g Cashews, chopped (for serving)

Salt & Pepper to taste


  1. Heat the oil in a pan on medium to high heat, season the chicken and brown all over.
  2. Add the peppers and onion to the pan and cook for about 3 minutes until softened.
  3. Add to the pan the paprika, curry powder, ginger, allspice, brown sugar and chillies, mix through for about 1 minute to coat, then add the black beans, peas, cooked rice, pineapple and lime juice, mix through to combine.
  4. If too dry, add 1-2 Tbsp of water and stir, put lid on pan and heat through for about 5 minutes. To serve sprinkle the spring onion and cashews. Enjoy!

MEDICINAL GREEN CURRY

Green Curry with Rice

This time of year (January) it is very cold, wet, windy and snowy, so your immune system can take a bit of a battering. We tend to reach for medications such a cold & flu capsules, ibuprofen etc, which can help, however, I am a great believer that you can repair your body and fight infections from within and eating right does play a big part on that.

This recipe contains the following, so it is the ultimate winter fighter food.

Chillies contain Capsaicin which helps clear mucus. Ginger contains natural antibodies & anti-inflammatory agents & the ability to clear congestion. Garlic has antiviral & antibacterial properties. Butternut squash & wholemeal rice is good for boosting Vitamin C for your immune system. Cashew nuts are good source of fibre & magnesium both good for bone health & energy boosting.

This is also a great dish for batch cooking. It really is a win win all round.


Serves 4

2 Large Chicken Breasts – cut into chunks

2 Tbsp Thai Green Curry Paste (1 used the Blue Dragon Paste, but feel free to make your own)

1 Tbsp Coconut Oil or Olive Oil for cooking

1 400g Tin Coconut Milk

1 Vegetable Stock Cube

1 Tsp Turmeric

300g Butternut Squash, cut into chunks

200g Cauliflower, cut into small pieces

150g Baby Spinach

1 Tbsp Soy Sauce

Salt & Pepper

Juice of 1 Lime

30g Chopped Cashews (to garnish)

Handful chopped Spring Onion (to garnish)

50g Wholemeal Rice per person, cooked as per pack instructions.

  1. Heat the oil in a pan on medium to high heat, brown the chicken and remove with slotted spoon.
  2. If needed, put a little more oil in. Stir fry the curry paste for about 2 minutes to heat through and release the flavours.
  3. Crumble the vegetable stock cube into the coconut milk and stir, pour into the pan with the curry paste and mix through. Add 1 Tsp of Turmeric.
  4. Add back to the pan the chicken, butternut squash and cauliflower, mix and reduce to a simmer for 30 minutes, covered.
  5. 5 minutes before curry is ready, add in 1 Tbsp Soy Sauce, Juice of Lime and Spinach, mix through continue to cook for 5 minutes.
  6. Serve with some wholemeal rice, spring onion and cashew nuts.

Thai Green Curry & Wholemeal Rice

CHEESY BEEF MINCE PASTA

Cheesy Mince Pasta

My meal plan somehow didn’t go to plan this week as I seemed to run out of store cupboard essentials like tin chopped tomatoes etc. This dish was the result of that, having looked a what I had and what needed to be used up I decided on a simple, quick and one pot dish. This turned out so delicious that I am sharing it with you, not only is it an easy to make dish but one that could be made ahead of time and frozen for later. The flavours in this dish can be enjoyed with the whole family. The good thing about this dish is that you can add whatever vegetables you like, to be honest anything goes here.


Serves 2 – 3

250g Scottish Beef Mince (you could also use minced lamb)

1 Onion, chopped

1 tsp Ground Garlic Granules or 2 Garlic Cloves

100g Frozen Garden Peas

120g Pasta (I used fusilli but penne will do too)

400ml Beef Stock

2 Tbsp Tomato Paste

1 Tsp Dried Chilli Flakes

1 Tsp Smoked Paprika

Salt & Pepper to taste

1 Tbsp oil

100g Grated Cheddar Cheese

Handful of Chopped Parsley

  1. Heat the oil in a pan on medium to high heat and fry the onions until softened and slightly browned
  2. Add in the beef mince, season with salt & pepper & brown.
  3. Add in the tomato paste, garlic, paprika, chilli flakes and frozen peas, mix through. Add in the pasta and beef stock, bring to the boil, reduce to a simmer and cook covered until pasta is cooked through, about 12-15 minutes.
  4. Remove lid and sprinkle over the cheddar cheese and parsley, put lid back on, turn off heat and leave for 5 minutes. The heat in the pan will gently melt the cheese. Serve and Enjoy.


SCOTTISH NEW YEARS DAY STEAK PIE

Steak Pie

The steak pie became the national New Year’s dinner dish in Scotland because New Year’s Day was not traditionally taken as a holiday, (Western society has only been celebrating New Year for the past 400 years.) Families were too busy to cook and bought big steak pies from their local butcher instead. It was in 1871 that Scotland declared January 1st as a national holiday and then wasn’t until 1971 that Scotland got January 2 as another bank holiday.

Butcher-bought steak pie remains popular today, I suspect partly because most Scots are too hung-over to think about cooking on New Year’s Day. Hogmanay & New Years Day is about more than seeing in the bells with a dram of whisky and the best New Year street party in the world, the traditional celebrations continue well into the next day. In fact, it’s probably partly due to the over indulgence of alcohol that the ritual Ne’erday dinner continues to be such a vital part of New Year for so many Scots. The Traditional Steak Pie is round or oval in shape, which symbolises the end of one year with the seamless beginning of the next.

I do like to make my own steak pie and this recipe dates back to my Grannies and Aunties recipes. They key to a good steak pie is the meat, good quality Scottish Beef is key and it’s important to slow cook until it falls apart. I always make the night before too, this allows the gravy/juices to soak into the meat for an amazing flavour.


Serves 2-3

500g Braising or Stewing Steak (rump steak is also good)

1 Large Onion, Chopped

1 Carrot, Peeled & Sliced

400ml Beef Stock

1-2 Tbsp Beef Gravy Granules

2 Tbsp Olive Oil

Salt & Black Pepper

2 Tbsp Cornflour

1 egg beaten for wash

1 Ready to Roll Puff Pastry

  1. Heat 1 Tbsp oil in a large pan on medium to high heat. Pat dry the meat and coat with the cornflour and season. Brown the meat in the pan, remove with a slotted spoon.
  2. Add 1 Tbsp oil to the pan and add in the onions, cook for a few minutes to soften and brown. Add back to the pan the meat and the carrots along with the beef stock, bring to the boil and reduce to a gentle simmer (very low heat), cover with a lid and slow cook for about 2 hours.
  3. With a slotted spoon carefully remove the meat & vegetables and decant into an oven proof pie dish, with the gravy still in the pan add the gravy granules and mix through on medium heat to thicken up the gravy slightly. (You don’t want it too thick as it will thicken overnight) Pour the gravy over the meat in the oven dish, allow to cool, cover with foil and refrigerate overnight.
  4. When ready to bake, roll your pastry out and using a pastry brush, brush egg wash around the edge of your pie dish, take the pastry and lay over the dish, pressing the edges to seal. Trim any excess pastry. (which you could use for a wee design) Using a knife, make a small hole in the middle to allow the steam to escape. Brush the pastry with the remaining egg wash and bake in a pre heated oven at 200 deg C for about 25-30 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown and cooked.
  5. Serve with your choice of sides. My favourite is Roast Potatoes for New Years Day (perfect Roasties recipe here:-https://cookingwithluce.wordpress.com/2020/12/09/the-best-crispy-roast-potatoes/) and selection of Vegetables. Or any other day we have Mash Potatoes.


Scottish Oat & Pistachio Crusted Cod

Scottish Cod

I am very lucky to live in a Country with an amazing Food Larder and 1 type of Food that Scotland is known for is it’s Fresh Fish, the Scottish Fishing Industry is currently worth around £316 million to Scotland, unfortunately that number has went down recently due to Covid, but at the height back in 2015 it was worth nearly £437 million. Most of its catch comes in from Aberdeen, then some from central and southern areas. Some of the most popular seafood caught in Scotland are mainly shellfish such as Mussels, Shrimp & Crab but also Salmon, Cod, Haddock & Mackerel.

My local Fishmonger Ryan Black, is from a nearby Town called Kirkcaldy which is in the Fife region, they provide a fantastic service and deliver straight to your door, straight from the shore. There is nothing better than getting the freshest fish delivered the same day. I got some lovely pieces of Cod for dinner.

Having some Pistachios in my cupboard to be used, I decided to try my Pistachio Crust recipe with the Cod and it worked a treat….super delicious, healthy and quick mid week meal.

Serves 2

2 Cod Fillets

25g Pistachio’s

20g Scottish Oats

1 Tbsp Mustard Powder or 2 Tsp Dijon Mustard

1 Tbsp Lemon Juice

Salt & Pepper to taste

1 Tsp Dried Parsley or small handful of fresh

  1. Line a baking Tray with greaseproof paper and preheat your oven to fan 210 deg C
  2. Using a processor, blitz the pistachios and oats together with the parsley until roughly chopped
  3. If using mustard powder, take 1 tbsp into a bowl and squeeze 1 tbsp lemon juice in and mix into a paste, leave to sit for 10 minutes to allow flavour to develop.
  4. Lay cod onto baking sheet and spoon the mustard over the fish, season with salt and pepper, then place the pistachio crust mix over the top covering the fish, press down to secure. Bake in the oven for 12-15 minutes until opaque.
  5. Serve with a slice of lemon.


Chicken & Bean Tagine

Chicken Tagine

This North African dish is named after the earthenware pot it is traditionally cooked in. I have used Chicken which is simmered with the traditional flavours of sweet spices and vegetables. A Typical Moroccan style dish would use beef which has always been their staple diet with sweet spices & dried fruit. I used my heavy Cast Iron Pot for this, which is great for slow cooking and low temperatures.

If you have read through some of my other recipes, you’ll see that I love One Pot Cooking, it is simple and good for batch cooking if you prepare meals ahead of the week. It also means less dishes to wash…lol!

Serves 2

2 Chicken Breasts – but into big chunks

6 Shallots

2 Carrots – chopped

30g Butter

1 Tsp Saffron

1/2 Tsp Ground Ginger

1 Tbsp Smoked Paprika

1/4 Tsp Ground Cinnamon

200g Tin Broad Beans or Butter Beans (you can even use Chickpeas)

50g Dates (Optional)

Salt & Pepper to taste

Fresh Coriander – Chopped

Fresh Parsley – Chopped

  1. Preheat a little oil in the pot on medium to high heat and brown the chicken.
  2. Peel and chop 3 shallots into rings and 3 into quarters. Add into the pan with the carrots, butter and brown gently.
  3. Pour in 400ml of cold water, just enough to cover the chicken, bring to the boil slowly and reduce to a gentle simmer for about 30 minutes.
  4. Add in the saffron, ginger, paprika, dates(if using) and beans to the chicken pot, stir and put the lid back on, continue to simmer for a further 30 minutes. Season with Salt & Pepper.
  5. Serve and garnish with some chopped coriander and parsley. For a more filling dish you can also serve with some couscous.

Cullen Skink

Cullen Skink is an authentic Scottish Thick Soup from Cullen, North East Scotland. It’s main ingredients are Smoked Haddock, Potatoes and Onion, which makes a lovely home comforting dish that lasts through the years. It’s one of our most popular dishes in my household, especially in the Autumn/Winter Seasons. Traditionally it is served with bread.

Initially, Cullen Skink referred to a type of broth made with the scrapings of beef from the front legs of cattle, hence ‘Skink’ as this means shin. Hard times in the early 1890s left the Northern people unable to buy this product. By this time, Cullen Harbour (completed in 1819) had become the thriving centre of herring fishing and the village also specialised in the production of smoked haddock. With many families in the local villages having a fishing background, they turned to smoked haddock which was in plentiful supply. By using smoked haddock and various other products all put together, a distinctive delicious soup was made.

Makes 2 large bowls

2 Smoked Haddock Fillets

1 White Onion, Diced

1/2 Leek, sliced, white part only

350g White Potatoes, peeled and diced

300ml Milk

100ml Single Cream or Creme Friache

1 Bay Leaf

40g Butter

Salt & Pepper to taste

Handful of Chopped Parsley

  1. Melt the butter in a pan and add the onion & leeks, cook for a
    few minutes then add the potatoes and continue to cook for a
    few minutes.
  2. Add the milk, bay leaf & season. Bring to the boil then reduce
    to a simmer. Gently add the haddock to the pot and simmer
    gently for about 15 minutes.
  3. Using a slotted spoon remove the haddock,from the pan place
    onto a chopping board and remove the skin, break into
    chunks, add back to the pan along with the cream and mix
    through, heat through gently for a few minutes.
  4. Remove the Bay leaf and sprinkle over the parsley then serve into bowls.
A Bowl of Cullen Skink


Chipotle Chicken & Smoky Salsa

Chipotle Chicken on Toasted Sourdough Bread

Oh yum, this was delicious, chipotle is a smoky & spicy flavour from Mexico. A chipotle pepper is a dry, smoked jalapeno pepper. They are most commonly made from red jalapenos. However, you can also use ripe green jalapenos as well. Chipotle peppers are added to any dish that could use a smoky flavor with a little heat. For this recipe I used a Chipotle paste. A quick and easy full of flavour dinner.

Serves 2

2 Chicken Breasts

1 tbsp oil

1 Medium White Onion, diced

1 tsp Smoked Paprika

1 tsp Cumin

1 tbsp of Chipotle Paste

1 tbsp Balsamic Vinegar

100ml Passata

1 tbsp Brown Sugar

4 slices of Sourdough Bread or you can serve with Tortilla’s

For the Salsa:-

8-10 Cherry tomatoes – quartered

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

1 tsp chipotle paste

1/2 red onion – finely diced

chopped coriander

Freshly squeezed Lime & Lemon Juice

Seasoning to taste.

  1. Using a Blender/Food processor, whiz up the chicken breast into a mince like consistancey
  2. Heat the oil in a fry pan and brown the onion and minced chicken, breaking up the chicken as you cook
  3. Add in the cumin, paprika, chipotle paste, vinegar, passata and sugar and mix through until chicken is coated.
  4. Cook for about 10-15 minutes
  5. To make the salsa, place everything in a bowl and mix together, set aside.
  6. Toast your Sourdough bread, remove chicken from heat and serve on top of bread. Serve with Salsa.

Harissa Spice Beef Soup

A Bowl of Harissa Spice Beef Soup

A Moroccan inspired recipe and perfect for coming into the Winter months, it’s hearty, filling and warming. It is also a great batch cook recipe, make the soup up to 3 days ahead, cover and keep in the fridge. Freeze portions in food bags for up to 3 months. Add a splash of water when reheating.

Serves 4

300g Scottish Steak Mince (or any good quality beef mince)

1 Red Onion – chopped

1 Garlic Clove – crushed

400g Tin Tomatoes

1 tbsp Gram Masala

2 tsps Harissa Paste

1 litre Beef Stock

250g Puy Lentils (I used the pre cooked ones from Merchant Gourmet, my fav)

1 tbsp Dried Coriander

150g Spinach, chopped

1 tbsp Olive Oil

Salt & Pepper

  1. Heat a little oil in a casserole dish on medium to high heat, add the mince with seasoning and brown, about 6-8 minutes, remove with a slotted spoon.
  2. Add the onion and garlic and cook for a few minutes until softened. Add in the Gram Masala, Harissa Paste and stir, next add the tin tomatoes and cook for about 5 minutes to reduce down slightly.
  3. Return the mince to the pot with the beef stock, bring to the boil then simmer and cook covered for about 30 minutes.
  4. Add the lentils, spinach and coriander to the pot and cook uncovered for 10 minutes.
  5. Serve into bowls.


Black Pudding, Beetroot & goats cheese salad

Black Pudding, Beetroot Salad & Goats Cheese Salad

I’ve loads of Beetroot growing in my garden just now and perfect season for it too, so decided on a little treat for lunch today. Certainly beats the Ryvita’s….lol.

Beetroot is packed with essential nutrients, beetroots are a great source of fiber, folate (vitamin B9), manganese, potassium, iron, and vitamin C. Beetroots and beetroot juice have been associated with numerous health benefits, including improved blood flow, lower blood pressure, and increased exercise performance.

Perfect pairing with Beetroot for me is definitely Stornoway Black Pudding & Goats Cheese, just so yummy! I served with some Homegrown Spinach too.

Serves 2

4 large Beetroots – Cooked and Sliced into bite size chunks

60g Goats Cheese

4 Slices of Black pudding

1 tbsp Balsamic Vinegar

Pinch salt

1 tsp Mixed Herbs

Handful of Spinach – chopped

Sunflower & Pumpkin Seeds to top

  1. Place Beetroot into a bowl, add balsamic vinegar, salt & mixed herbs and mix through.
  2. Cook Black Pudding in a pan on medium to high heat for about 3-4 minutes each side with a little oil. Remove and pat dry, break up into bite size pieces and add to beetroot and mix through.
  3. Chop up the spinach and lay on a plate, top with the beetroot and black pudding then tear the goats cheese over and serve with pumpkin & sunflower seeds.
Plate of Black pudding, Beetroot & Goats Cheese

Smoked Haddock Pasta

Smoked Haddock Pasta with White Cheese Sauce

Pasta is such a staple food in most households and I think one of the easiest fast foods around. It can be made healthier by using the Wholewheat variety. When eaten in moderation, pasta can be part of a healthy diet. Wholewheat pasta may be a better choice for many, as it is lower in calories and carbs but higher in fiber and nutrients. However, in addition to the type of pasta you pick, what you top it with is just as important.

This dish uses Scottish Smoked Haddock, fresh from my favourite fishmongers in Pittenweem, Ryan Black, they deliver straight from the Shore to your door.

It also uses some of my fresh vegetables from my garden….yum!

Makes enough for 2

2 pieces of Smoked Haddock (or any fish you like)

150g Wholewheat pasta

2 Carrots – chopped

Handful of Broccoli

Handful of peas

3 Sweet mini peppers – chopped

Salt & pepper to taste

White Cheese Sauce to serve (recipe here https://cookingwithluce.wordpress.com/2020/10/03/white-cheese-sauce/)

  1. I used my Steam pot for my Combi Microwave for this recipe, but if you don’t have Steamer just cook your pasta as per packet instructions. In a pan, bring some water to the boil add your vegetables and simmer for 4 minutes until softened. (you could use frozen vegetables or tinned vegetables for this too). Bring a large pan of water to the boil, bring to a simmer and add in your fish, cook for about 10 minutes.
  2. If you have a Steam pot, add the pasta with 300ml water to the base, then your fish and vegetables onto the grid and cook on Pasta Setting for 7 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, make your sauce as per above recipe.
  4. Remove fish and place onto a chopping board and remove the skin, break up into bite size pieces.
  5. Drain your pasta and vegetables. Add the vegetables to the pasta then pour over the sauce mixture and mix through, add in the fish, mix and serve.


Chicken & Bacon Hotpot

Chicken & Bacon Hotpot

It is my favourite time of the year, Autumn, the colours on the trees, the fresh crisp air, walks in the park, comfy jumpers and warming food. What’s not to like? After harvesting some of my vegetables from the garden today I decided to use them in this warming Hotpot. Nothing says home comfort food that a big pot a deliciousness & straight from the garden too.

The good thing with this recipe is that you can use just about any root vegetable and it will work just as good.

Some of my winter harvest this morning. Parsnips, Carrots & Potatoes

Makes enough for 2 large portions

4 Large Potatoes, cut into bite size pieces

2 Large carrots, cut into bite size pieces

2 Parsnips, peeled and cut into bite size pieces

1 Onion, sliced into wedges

6-8 Rashers of Smoked Bacon, sliced

2 Chicken Breasts, cut into chunks

500ml Chicken Stock

1 tsp oil

1 tsp Nutmeg

1 garlic clove, crushed

Salt & Pepper to taste

Cornflour to thicken sauce if needed.

1 tbsp flour

  1. First coat the chicken with seasoning and the flour, heat the oil in a large pot or casserole dish then brown the chicken and remove.
  2. Add in the garlic & nutmeg along with the onion and fry until softened then add the bacon and fry until cooked slightly, few minutes.
  3. Add to the pan the potatoes, carrots, parsnips and mix, then add in the chicken stock & bring to the boil.
  4. Reduce to a low simmer and cook covered for about 2 hours. Alternatively you can cook in the oven at 140 deg for about 2 hours.
  5. Remove lid and if you like a thick sauce like me just add a little cornflour and stir through. 1 tsp mixed with water should be enough.
  6. Serve with some lovely fresh crusty bread. Or if you are Scottish it has to be Plain Bread!

Chicken & Chorizo Pasta Bake

Chicken & Chorizo Pasta Bake

Oh yum! Today was absolutely stoating it down (heavy rain) and very Dreich (dull, moody) weather, so it was a warming pasta bake for dinner. Not only is pasta filling but this dish is simple and easy to make, great for a family meal or just when you are looking for something comforting to warm you up. The recipe uses a lot of store cupboard essentials so easy to put together.

Dish of Chicken & Chorizo Pasta Bake

Serves 2 large portions (or 4 small)

100g Wholewheat Pasta (again your choice, I used Fusilli)

2 Chicken Breasts

1 onion – chopped

1 red pepper – chopped

Olive oil

1 Garlic clove – crushed or 1 tsp ground granules

1 tsp dried Italian herbs or Oregano

200g Chopped tomatoes

200ml Chicken Stock

100ml Milk (or cream)

Handful of Spinach leaves, chopped

Handful of frozen peas

100g Grated Cheese (I used cheddar)

1 tsp Chilli flakes (optional, if you like it spicy)

1 tsp Paprika (for sprinkling on top)

80g Chopped Chorizo

Salt & Pepper

  1. Heat a little oil in a fry pan and preheat your oven to 190 deg fan.
  2. Brown the onions & red pepper with the garlic in the fry pan until softened, add in the chorizo and cook for a few minutes then add the chicken, season & brown chicken on all sides for a few minutes.
  3. Once browned, add in the chopped tomatoes, chicken stock, milk, herbs and chilli (if using) to the pan and mix through, bring to the boil and reduce to a low simmer, cover and cook for at least an 1 hr.
  4. Meanwhile cook your pasta as per packet instructions.
  5. Using 2 forks, remove the lid from the pan and shred your chicken breasts (if you prefer chunks, that’s fine but I like it shredded)
  6. Add in the frozen peas and Spinach and cook for a further few minutes.
  7. Drain your pasta and add to the pan and mix through.
  8. Now decant the pasta chicken into an ovenproof dish and grate the cheese on top with a sprinkle of paprika and salt & pepper to season.
  9. Bake on middle shelf for about 25 minutes. Serve. Yum!

Chicken & Chorizo Pasta Bake


Scottish Mince ‘n’ tatties

Mince ‘n’ Tatties

Mince ‘n’ Tatties (Mince & Potatoes) is a traditional Scottish dish and one that will never go away. Historically it was popular in school canteens because it was easy to make batches and feed lots of children. I grew up with mince ‘n’ tatties, at least once a week we would have this dish, whether it be at home, my grannies house or my Auntie’s it was a household meal that satisfied everyone every time.

There is no wrong or right way to make this, but does need to include minced beef and root vegetables such as onions & carrots. Here is my version and always a winner in my house. The only debate we always have is Brown Sauce or Tomato Sauce? Maybe you’ll make it and let me know…lol!

Best served with a buttered Scottish plain outsider slice too…….oh….this is a must! Or even a Scottish plain mince ‘n’ tattie piece (Sandwich)! Haven’t tried it….go on I dare you….you won’t look back…trust me!

Scottish Plain Bread

Serves 2

For the Mince

250g Scottish Steak Mince

1 onion – chopped

1 Carrot – chopped

Handful of garden peas (frozen is fine)

200ml Beef Stock

1 tbsp Beef Gravy granules

Salt & Black pepper

Splash of Worcestershire Sauce (optional)

For the Tatties

400g Potatoes (ones good for mash)

2 tbsp butter

  1. Heat a little oil in a pan on medium heat and brown the onions, then add the mince, season with plenty black pepper and salt to taste and brown.
  2. Add into the pot the carrots, peas and beef stock, mix and bring to the boil, then simmer gently for about 30 minutes.
  3. Next stir through the gravy granules to thicken the sauce, cook for a further 5 minutes. At this stage if using worcestershire sauce, then stir through.
  4. Meanwhile, cook potatoes in slightly salted water until soft, drain and mash with the butter.
  5. Serve.
Mince n Tatties

Go on, go back to your school days and use an ice cream scoop for yer tatties! In our households as kids and still to this day, we wouldn’t eat it like this…..oh no…..we would mix the tatties with the mince on the plate then cover in sauce….this is where the debate of Brown or Tomato sauce comes in…lol! Sometimes too we would make a piece with scottish plain bread and the mix of M&T’s in the middle…oh yum! You gotta try this. Proper home comfort food.


Chicken Curry with Almond Milk

Chicken Curry Pot

Who doesn’t love a Curry? Especially when it’s a healthier version. This Curry came about when I was trying to use up leftover Almond Milk, nutritionally, store-bought almond milk (like Alpro or Almond Breeze)  is a low-calorie product with about 56 calories per 100ml. It’s typically low in fat, with just 1.5g per 100g – all of which is largely unsaturated fat.

This Curry is a great family curry as its low in spice but with great flavour. It’s also great if you love batch cooking as you can make a hug pot and freeze into portions.

Chicken Curry with Almond Milk

Serves 2

2 Chicken Breasts – cut into chunks

1 tbsp olive oil

Salt & Pepper

1 tbsp Tomato Paste

300ml Almond Milk

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1 tsp Chilli powder

Handful of Cauliflower Florets (I used frozen)

Handful of Peas (I used frozen)

Curry Paste (see below)

Curry Paste:

1 Onion

1 tsp garlic granules

1 tsp ground ginger

1/2 tsp ground turmeric

1 tsp gram masala

Sea salt

  1. Mix all the Curry Paste ingredients into a blender and mix until you get a smooth paste.
  2. Heat a little oil in a pan on medium to high heat, add chicken, season and brown.
  3. Add the Curry paste to the pan and heat through for about 2 minutes.
  4. Next add the tomato paste, almond milk, cinnamon and chilli powder and mix through.
  5. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer on low for about 1 hour. 15 minutes before serving add in the cauliflower & peas, mix through and cook for remaining time.
  6. I served with some of my Chickpea Chaptai’s. https://cookingwithluce.wordpress.com/2020/08/29/chickpea-chapati/
Chickpea Chapati


My Best Beef Chilli Recipe

Beef Chilli Taco

The weather was turning a bit colder this weekend & there is no better dish than a warm chilli to heat your soul. I decided to slow cook this time and it definitely paid off as the flavours were more intense and the sauce lovely and thick. Chilli is always good the second day too, so this can be made in advance. Some cooks swear by lots of different spices from mustard powder to even cinnamon & I’ve even heard of chocolate in chilli…..(not sure about than one…lol), this combination I found works for me.

Pot of Beef Chilli

Serves 2

250-300g Scottish Beef Mince

1 tbsp Extra virgin olive oil

1 Red Onion – Diced

1 Red Pepper – Diced

1 Garlic Clove – crushed (or 1 tsp garlic granules)

1 tbsp tomato puree

1 tbsp chilli powder

1 tsp ground cumin

1/2 tsp smoked paprika

Salt & Black pepper to taste

1 tsp Herb mix (oregano, basil, coriander)

1 x 225g kidney beans

1 x 400g chopped tin tomatoes

1 Beef oxo cube

150ml water

  1. Heat the oil in a casserole dish or large pan on medium to high heat & fry the onions with the garlic until softened. Add in the Red pepper and cook for a further few minutes until softened.
  2. Add in the Beef mince, season and brown.
  3. Add in the tomato puree, spices & mix through.
  4. To the pot add the kidney beans and tin tomatoes & mix. Sprinkle over the beef oxo cube & the herbs, add in the water, bring to the boil, cover and simmer on a low heat for about 2-3 hours. If the sauce hasn’t thickened, remove lid and cook uncovered for about 10-15 minutes to help thicken sauce.
  5. I Served with Taco’s, Grated Cheese and sprinkled some fresh spring onions on top…yum! Also nice served with rice and soured cream.

Chicken & Chickpea Thai Cakes

Chicken & Chickpea Thai Cakes

These little cakes are so easy to make and quick too, a great mid week dinner or even a quick lunch bite. What’s even better is that they are healthy, low in fat & low in calories at just 150 per cake.

Makes 8

2 Chicken Breasts

4 Spring Onions – chopped finely

1 tsp garlic granules or 2 garlic cloves, crushed

1/2 tsp ginger or 1″ fresh ginger chopped finely

1 tbsp dried coriander

2 tsps Soy Sauce

Zest & Juice of 1 lime

Salt & Pepper

1 tin of Chickpeas drained (400g)

1 tsp dried chilli flakes

Sweet Chilli Sauce to serve.

  1. Preheat oven to 180 deg and line a baking tray with greaseproof paper.
  2. Using of food processor blitz the chickpeas and chicken until minced.
  3. In a bowl mix everything together with your hands and form 8 small cakes about 1cm thick, place onto baking paper and bake in the oven for 15 minutes.
  4. Serve with some Sweet Chilli Sauce. Yum!
Chicken & Chickpea Thai Cakes

Thai Beef Balls

Thai Beef Balls

I do love it when an ad hoc recipe comes together. We fancied some Thai tonight but didn’t really have the right ingredients, so I compromised! I am so bad at compromising…..lol….. I am forever adding and changing things to suit what I have in my cupboards…..but that’s where good recipes come from…right?

This was one of them, super tasty and satisfied us for dinner tonight.

Thai Beef Balls & Thai Potato Wedges with Lime & Mayo

Made 18 Bitesize Balls

250g Scottish Beef Mince (you could use Chicken or Turkey)

2 tbsps Soy Sauce

4 Spring Onions – chopped finely

1 tsp Dried garlic granules

1 tsp Dried ginger powder

2 tsps Dried coriander

1 tsp Chilli flakes

Zest of 1 lime (keep lime for juice later)

150g tin Broad Beans (crushed) (Water chestnuts, blitzed in a processor would be nice too)

  1. Preheat oven to 180 deg and place greaseproof paper onto a baking tray.
  2. Mix the Soy sauce, ginger, garlic, chilli, lime zest, coriander, spring onions and seasoning in a bowl. Then add mince & broad beans, mix together with hands until it comes together.
  3. Take a small amount and roll into a ball, put onto baking tray. Bake in oven for 15 minutes. At end of cooking, turn on grill and brown for a few minutes.
  4. Serve with a Lime Wedge. I also served with Thai Potato Wedges (recipe below) and some Lime & Coriander Mayo.

For the Potato Wedges

Slice your potatoes into wedges and place in a food bag or bowl.

For the coating, mix 3 tbsps olive oil with 1 tsp chilli flakes, 1/2 tsp ginger, 1 tsp garlic and 2 tsps coriander. Season then mix with the wedges and cook as normal. (I use my Crisper plate in my microwave to cook them as it only takes 10 minutes) Check below for info on the Crisperplate. https://www.hotpoint.co.uk/Appliances/Cooking/Microwaves

Thai Potato Wedges

Caribbean Beef Stew

A Bowl of Caribbean Beef Stew

When I think of Caribbean Food, I think beans, rice, peppers, sweet potato & tomatoes to name a few. This dish is a mix of all my favourites and I was using up leftovers too. I hope you enjoy. This dish would be lovely with Lamb too.

Serves 2

300g Scottish Beef Mince

150g Diced Butternut squash (or sweet potatoes)

1 onion, chopped

1 Red Pepper, chopped

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

1 cm fresh ginger, finely chopped

1 tbsp sweet hot paprika

120ml Beef Stock

200g chopped tin tomatoes

200g Black Eyed beans

Handful of peas

Salt & Pepper to taste

  1. Heat some oil in a large pan and brown the mince.
  2. Add in the butternut squash, onion, red pepper, garlic, ginger, paprika and mix through, cook for 1 minute then add in the stock, tomatoes, peas and beans, bring to the boil then simmer covered for about 30 minutes. Season.
  3. If using Lamb I would slow cook this so the Lamb in tender.
  4. Serve on its own or with some rice.
Bowl of Stew


Chorizo, Chickpeas & Spinach Chilli

Chorizo, Chickpea and Spinach Chilli with rice

I am now back to work after a long furlough period due to this Covid19 pandemic. Being back at work means that I prefer quick and easy cooking meals for mid week dining. Last thing I want is to finish a long work day and stand cooking for an hour, who’s with me?

This dish takes just 15 minutes, so its a quick throw together in one pan kinda dish, but packs flavour and spice. Good on its own or can serve with some rice. I also used freshly picked Spinach from my new veggie beds (furlough project).

Serves 2

200g chickpeas

200g chopped tomatoes

80g chorizo – sliced or cut into bite size pieces

1 brown onion – chopped

1 yellow pepper – chopped

Handful of Spinach – chopped

1 tsp chilli flakes

1 tsp garlic granules

1 tsp basil flakes or fresh leaves to serve if you have

Salt & pepper to taste

100g Wholemeal or Basmati Rice if serving. (cooked as per packet instructions)

  1. Spray a pan with oil and heat on a medium to high heat
  2. Brown onions in pan for a few minutes
  3. Add in the pepper and chorizo with garlic and chilli flakes and cook for a few minutes
  4. Add in the tin tomatoes and chickpeas, mix through, bring to the boil then cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
  5. 1 minute before serving, add in the spinach and basil flakes, mix through. Season
  6. Serve on a bed of rice. Yum!
Plate of Chorizo & Chickpea Chilli


Beef Kofta Curry

Beef Kofta Curry Dish

Another great recipe from PON book, we are loving our curries at the moment, must be all this rainy weather we are getting thats putting us in the mood…lol! After all, who doesn’t love a good curry?

There is nothing better than a homemade Curry, fresh ingredients, good scottish beef and making from scratch you can save on those extra calories to make it a guilt free Curry. This little Curry is only 200 calories per serving. (add on 50g cooked brown rice to serve, still brings it to under 500 calories) Yummy!

Serves 2

1 Red onion, diced

1 tsp garlic granules (or 1 clove peeled and diced)

1 tbsp Curry Powder

1 tbsp Tomato Puree

400ml Beef Stock

230g Butternut Squash, diced

300g Scottish Beef Mince

Fresh Coriander, chopped

Salt & Pepper to taste

  1. Lightly oil a saucepan and add the onion, cook until browned. Add in the garlic and curry powder and stir, add in the tomato puree, stir then add in the stock. Add the butternut squash and bring to the boil then simmer for about 20 minutes until squash has softened.
  2. To make the meatballs, put the mince & coriander in a bowl then season with salt & pepper, mix together and then divide and roll into small balls. I got 10 out of mine.
  3. Spray a pan with a little oil and brown the meatballs. Set aside.
  4. Once butternut squash is ready, blitz with a hand blender to make a smooth sauce. Place the meatballs into the sauce and warm through for a few minutes. Remove and serve with a sprinkle of fresh coriander. Yum!

Keema Pie

Keema Pie

Oh WOW! This dish is super tasty, if you love Pies and you love Curries, you will absolutely love this. This came from my PON Everyday light Cookbook, so lower in calories too at just 400 per serving. The Sweet Potato Topping adds that extra flavour for perfection. This would be a good batch cook meal too.

Serves 2

For the Filling:-

300g Scottish Beef Mince

1 Red onion, diced

1 Red pepper, diced

1 Carrot, diced

1 tsp dried ginger granules (or 1cm fresh ginger, grated)

1 tsp garlic granules (or 1 clove, chopped)

2 tbsp Curry Powder

2 tbsp tomato puree

250ml Beef Stock

80g frozen peas

Salt & pepper to taste

For the Topping:-

1 large Maris Piper potato, peeled and diced

2 medium Sweet Potatoes, peeled and diced

1/4 tsp Turmeric

  1. Preheat oven to 180 deg fan
  2. Place the potatoes into a pan of water and bring to boil, then simmer for 20 minutes until tender.
  3. Meanwhile, spray some oil in a pan and brown the mince. Add the onion, pepper, carrot and cook for a few minutes. Add in the ginger, garlic, curry powder & tomato puree and mix. Then add the stock and bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook uncovered for about 15-20 minutes until sauce has thickened.
  4. Once potatoes are cooked, drain and mash with the turmeric and season.
  5. Once mince has cooked stir through the frozen peas and place into an ovenproof dish, allow to cool slightly. Once cooled spread the mash potatoes on top and fluff up with a fork. Bake in the oven for about 30 minutes. If you have a browning setting on your oven, place under grill and brown for a couple of minutes. (add that extra crunch)

Highland Hotpot

Chicken Hotpot

I am craving home cooked comfort foods these days, maybe it’s because we are all out of routine in life at the moment.

A traditional Highland Hotpot is normally made out of a Brace of Grouse (a brace is one male & one female grouse) and rabbit, however, my partner is not a big fan of these meats so I decided to make my version with free range chicken. This is a great slow cook one pot meal. Easy to make and delicious.

Hot pot meal

Makes enough for 2

2 chicken breasts – cut into cubes

1 tbsp flour

Salt & black pepper seasoning

1 white onion – cut into wedges

2 sticks celery – sliced

Cabbage – shredded

4-6 rashers of smoked bacon – chopped

spray oil

1 tsp white pepper

1 tsp All Spice (cinnamon, nutmeg & cloves)

1 pint of vegetable stock

2 medium potatoes – cubed

  1. Preheat your oven to 160 deg on fan.
  2. In an oven proof dish with lid, heat spray oil on hob at medium to high heat. Coat the chicken with seasoning and flour then brown in the pan, remove with a slotted spoon.
  3. In the same pan fry the onion and brown the bacon rashers for a few minutes.
  4. Add the potatoes & celery & mix through for a few minutes.
  5. Add back to the pan the chicken and add all spice & white pepper along with the stock, mix & bring to the boil. Then add the shredded cabbage mix, put lid on pot and transfer to the oven and cook for about 2 1/2 hours.
  6. The stock should have absorbed into the meat & veg. Serve. Yummy!
Highland Chicken Hotpot

Roasted Red Pepper Chicken Curry

Roasted Red Pepper Chicken Curry

This is my best homemade curry yet! (as said by my partner) I have to admit this was very delicious. I do surprise myself sometimes with my combinations out of a hat…lol! We had just come back from a mini hike nearby so we were pretty hungry, the weather was scorching (now scorching in Scotland is about 21 deg of sunshine…lol!), we fancied something light and refreshing. Looking in my cupboards & fridge, I had coconut milk, chicken and spinach to use up, so a wee light curry it was. Perfect with a light beer too!

Serves 2

2 small or 1.5 large chicken breasts – chopped into bitesize pieces

1 jar roasted red peppers

1 can coconut milk (full fat for more flavour)

1 tbsp harissa paste

Spray oil

1 red onion chopped

1 tsp curry powder

100g Spinach – I chopped finely

Seasoning (salt & pepper)

  1. Using a food processor, blend the roasted red peppers with the harissa paste and coconut milk until smooth.

2. In a pan heat a little oil, season the chicken and fry until browned. Then add the onion and cook for about 3-4 minutes. Add the curry powder and mix.

3. Pour in the Sauce mix and cook for about 10 minutes on a medium to high heat.

4. Add in the chopped spinach and mix through cooking for about 2 minutes.

5. If the sauce is still to thin, bring heat up to a slight boil to help thicken the sauce.

6. Serve with some brown rice or naan bread. I cooked some rice and added it to the pan mixture and mixed though.

This dish could be made vegan and gluten free by adding chickpeas instead of chicken and serving on its own.


Maw Broon’s Burgers

This just reminds me of Home. I love this Cookbook for everything traditionally Scottish (sometimes with a wee twist). Maw Broon is the indomitable matriarch of the Broons family and the original domestic goddess. In between cooking, cleaning, and setting the world tae rights over a braw cup of tea, she has also found time tae become the bestselling author of many Cookbooks.

The Broons is a comic strip in Scots published in the weekly Scottish newspaper The Sunday Post. It features the Brown family, who live in a tenement flat at 10 Glebe Street in the fictional Scottish town of Auchentogle or Auchenshoogle. Its something I grew up with, every year we would get the annual for Christmas and laugh loudly. The Broons started in 1936 and the annuals go back to 1939.

Makes 4 Large Burgers

500g Scottish Beef Mince

Handful of Breadcrumbs

1 Red Onion – chopped and fried

1 large egg

1/2 tsp black pepper

1/2 tsp white pepper

1/2 tsp cumin

1 tbsp tomato sauce

a dash worcestershire sauce

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp dry mustard powder

Method:-

  1. Firstly, heat a little oil in a pan a fry the onion until cooked, allow to cool.
  2. Put all the ingredients into a bowl, add the onion and combine together with hands.
  3. Cut into 4 sections or 6 if you prefer thinner burgers and shape into your burgers. Mine where about 1″ thick and approx 31/2″ diameter. Place on a tray a refrigerate for about 30 minutes. (helps it keep together when cooking)
  4. Heat a little spray oil in a griddle pan and cook burgers for about 10-15 minutes, depending on how thick they are.
  5. Serve on a good Scottish Morning Roll & garnish as you like. Mine is always melted cheese. I think that putting lettuce and tomato on a burger, its just wrong!…lol!


Middle Eastern Beef & Rice

Having some Chickpeas to use up, I decided to spice them up with some Middle Eastern Spices. This dish was delicious & my partner agreed…..happy days!

I also love this dish as its a one pot cooking meal which means less washing up….lol!

Serves 2

250g Scottish Beef Mince

200g Tinned Chickpeas

400g Tinned tomatoes

200g Red Kidney beans or you can use Black beans

250ml Beef Stock

70g Rice (Basmati is good, but I had some Red and wild rice left)

1 tsp Dried garlic granules

1 tsp Cumin

1 tsp Ground Coriander

1/2 tsp Turmeric

1 tsp Dried coriander leaf (fresh if you have it)

1 tsp Dried parsley (fresh if you have it)

Spray oil

Salt & Pepper

  1. Heat a little spray oil in a pan and brown the mince, remove with a slotted spoon, set aside.
  2. Put Rice, Garlic, Ground coriander, Cumin & Turmeric into pan and coat the rice. Add the Beef stock, bring to the boil then simmer for about 15-20 minutes until rice is softened.
  3. Add back to the pan the mince along with the chickpeas, tin tomatoes & kidney beans, mix through. Heat through uncovered for about 5 minutes.
  4. Add the parsley & coriander if fresh to serve. If using dried, add with the beans etc.


Beef & Rice Balls in Chilli Sauce

My taste buds were swaying towards a Chilli tonight, but fed up with the same old serving of Chilli mince on top of a bed of Rice, I decided to try something a bit different. It worked a treat, a mix between meatballs and chilli….Yum! At under 500 calories per portion too this dinner is perfect and nutritious.

Serves 2 portions

For the Balls

300g Lean Scottish Mine Beef

40g Basmati & Wild Rice Mix (you can just use Basmati Long grain if you wish) Cooked

1 tsp dried Garlic Granules

1 tsp Cumin

1 tsp Dried Coriander

For the Chilli Sauce

200ml Beef Stock

1 Red onion – diced

1 tsp dried chilli flakes

200g Tinned tomatoes

200g Red Kidney Beans, chopped

Salt & Pepper

Few dashes of Tabasco Sauce

  1. Cook your rice as per packet instructions and ensure it is very soft, once cooked allow to completely cool before added to your bowl of mince.
  2. In a bowl, add Mince, Garlic, Cumin, Coriander and season with salt & pepper. Once Rice has cooled add to bowl and mix through.
  3. Heat a little oil in a pan. With wet hands take small amounts of the meat mixture and roll into balls (you should get about 12 balls), place into your pan and brown all over. Remove.
  4. Add the onions to the pan and fry until browned, then add the tinned tomatoes, chilli flakes, kidney beans and beef stock then season with salt & pepper. Bring to the boil then reduce and bring to a simmer. At this point add back the meat and rice balls and cook covered for about 15 minutes.
  5. Just before you are ready to serve, add a few splashes of Tabasco sauce for that extra kick! (please take out if you don’t like it spicy hot)


Potato & Chorizo Bake

Since we are still in lockdown, we fancied something special for lunch today, sun was shining through the window, temperature was rising, so we thought we’d treat ourselves to this lovely little dish. Oh & of course we had a cheeky glass of wine with our meal too, just to help wash it all down.

Serves 2 portions.

3 medium size potatoes – cut into small cubes

1 red onion – diced

80 g Chorizo – sliced

2 eggs

200g tin tomatoes

50g grated cheddar cheese

1 tsp dried chilli flakes

1 tsp paprika

Salt & pepper to taste

Spray oil

1 tbsp butter

  1. Preheat oven to fan 190 deg.
  2. Place cubed potatoes into a pan of salted water and bring to the boil, simmer for about 5 minutes. Drain.
  3. Meanwhile, in a pan brown and cook the chorizo for a few minutes, remove with a slotted spoon.
  4. Add the onion & chilli flakes to the chorizo pan and fry until browned, then add back to the pan the potatoes with tin tomatoes, butter & paprika, stir until combined and cook for a few minutes.
  5. Place mixture into an oven proof dish, make 2 wells and crack the eggs in, season the eggs then sprinkle grated cheese over.
  6. Bake in oven for 10-15 minutes depending on how you like your eggs.
  7. Serve. Yummy!


Chicken, Leek & Potato Gratin

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Wanted some home comfort food today and trying to use up leftovers this little dish was perfect, tasty & filling.

 

Makes 2 servings

1 1/2 chicken breast (large)

1 Green Pepper

1 Large Leek

3 large Potatoes

250ml chicken stock

50ml Cream or milk

1 tsp nutmeg

1 tsp dried garlic granules

Salt & pepper to taste

Grated cheese (I used cheddar but Gruyere is nice if you have it)

Paprika to taste

 

  1. Pre heat your oven to 180 deg (or if you have a class 9 Hotpoint use the Potato Gratin function)
  2. Heat a little spray oil in a pan and slice the chicken into small strips, season with salt & pepper & nutmeg then brown, remove with a slotted spoon.
  3. Heat a little butter in the pan, slice the leek and gently saute the leeks with the garlic until slightly browned, remove with a slotted spoon.
  4. Add the peppers are cook until slightly softened and browned. Remove.                20200412_164220
  5. Peel and slice thinly the potatoes.
  6. Lightly butter a baking dish and start by layering the potatoes then the chicken mix with vegetables then potatoes then chicken mix then potatoes. Pour in the stock and milk and finally finish off with the grated cheese sprinkled on top. Then sprinkle with the paprika to taste.
  7. Bake for about 50-60 minutes.
  8. Serve…Yummy!

 

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Jambalaya

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This was a little dish I tried from Pinch of Nom’s Latest Cookbook. It was super tasty and low in Kcal’s too at just 398 per portion.

 

Serves 4

Low cal cooking spray

300g diced chicken

2 red peppers, diced

1 onion, diced

2 celery sticks, diced

2 garlic cloves, minced

2 tbsp cajun seasoning (1 tsp onion powder, 1 tsp salt, 2 tsps garlic powder, 2 tsps paprika, 1 tsp ground black pepper, 1 tsp cayenne pepper, 1 tsp oregano dried, 1 tsp thyme, 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes)

1 tsp smoked paprika

1 tsp dried oregano

1 x 400g tin tomatoes

200g long grain rice

400ml chicken stock

1 tbsp worcestershire sauce

3 low fat sausages (I sliced them after they were cooked)

 

  1. Spray a large dish with oil, add the chicken and cook over medium heat to brown.
  2. Then add in the onion, peppers and celery, cook for a few minutes
  3. Add in the garlic, cajun spice, paprika and oregano, stir and cook for a few minutes.
  4. Add the rice, chopped tomatoes, stock & worcestershire sauce. Place the sausages in and bring to the boil then reduce to a low heat and cook covered for about 30 minutes.
  5. Serve, Yum!

This is a great dish that you can batch cook with and freeze.


Chicken Dopiaza (lower calorie option)

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I recently purchased a new cookbook by Pinch of Nom, I loved their last one so had to get their new one. This is a recipe from their Fakeaway options and at under 400 calories per serving it is definitely my new takeaway at home. Super tasty no compromise on flavour at all. I served with a little Basmati and Wild Rice along with my homemade Sweet Potato Roti, a perfect Saturday night home takeaway.

 

Makes 2 Servings

2 Chicken Breasts – cut into small chunks

1 red onion – diced

1 garlic clove – grated

1 cm piece of ginger – grated

1 tsp chilli flakes or 1 red chilli- diced

1 tsp curry powder**

1 tsp mixed spice**

**(I used this as an alternative to gram masala as I didn’t have any)

1 tsp cumin

1 tsp ground coriander

1 x 400g tin tomatoes

100ml chicken stock – 1 stock cube

1 red pepper – diced

1 tbsp chopped fresh coriander to serve.

 

  1. Heat a little low fat spray oil in a fry pan on medium heat
  2. Brown the onion, garlic, chilli and ginger together for a few minutes
  3. Add the chicken and brown all over.
  4. Next add in the curry powder, cumin, mixed spice, ground coriander and mix through until coated.
  5. Add in the tin tomatoes, red pepper and stock and bring to the boil then reduce and cook on a low heat for about 15 minutes lid on, then 15 minutes with lid off to help thicken the sauce slightly.
  6. Serve a sprinkle with some fresh coriander…..YUM!


Chilli Skulls

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I have seen Pizza Skulls on social media and gave me the idea to make these for my Horror theme Hogmany coming up. I changed it from Pizza filling to a Chilli Con Carne filling. These are amazing and so much fun too. I got my pan from Nordic Ware and opted for Black & Red dough too using Red Malt flour and Activated Charcoal powder.

 

Makes 6

For the Pizza Dough (I made extra, which I stored for later use)

3 x 350g Wholemeal Bread Flour (you can use strong white too)

3 x 1 tsp salt

3 x 1 tsp caster sugar

3 x 3 tsp baking powder

3 x 170ml warm water

20g Red Malt Flour, plus 1 tsp red food colouring for the Red

3 tbsp charcoal powder plus 1 tsp black food colouring for the Black

  1. Mix everything using a mixer until it come together like dough, wrap in cling film and refrigerate for a couple of hours. Mix 3 lots ie: plain, black & Red
  2. Once ready to use,  cut amount you need and store the rest. Place on a floured surface and roll out, not too thing or too thick. It will be stretchy, just keep stretching it until you have the size you need. Approx 7 x 4″
  3. Brush your skull pan with melted butter and lay the dough into each skull pressing gently. Place the filling in and fold over the excess dough, if you have too much just trim.

 

For the Chilli

350g Scottish Beef Mince

1 Red onion, finely chopped

1 Red pepper, finely chopped

1 tsp garlic granules

1 tsp cumin

1 tsp dried chilli flakes (omit if you don’t like it too hot)

2 tsp chilli powder

200g Tin tomatoes

200g Kidney beans

200ml beef stock

light fry oil

Salt & pepper to taste

Grated Cheese of your choice.

 

  1. Heat the fry oil on medium to high heat
  2. Fry the onions and pepper with the garlic until softened
  3. Add the beef and brown
  4. Add in chilli powder, cumin, salt & pepper with chilli flakes (if using) mix through to coat
  5. Add in the tin tomatoes, kidney beans and stock, bring to the boil and simmer for 30 minutes cover. The uncovered for 10 minutes to thicken sauce. Allow to cool.

Once skulls are filled, refrigerate for 30 minutes then bake at 200 deg for 25 minutes. Serve.

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Lasagne

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I first saw this recipe on Pinch of Nom site, I got their first book and have preordered their second, its full of healthier option recipes that do not compromise on flavour. This Lasagne was both delicious and lower in calories.

 

Makes 4 portions

400g Scottish Mince

1 Carrot, chopped

1 Onion, chopped

1 Red Pepper, chopped

2 tbsp Tomato Paste

1 400g tin chopped tomatoes

2 Oxo cubes

1 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce

1 tbsp Mixed Italian Herbs

2 tsp Dried Garlic Granules

For the White Sauce

350g Natural Yoghurt Fat Free

1/2 tsp Mustard

120g Low Fat Cheddar

2 eggs

Lasagne Sheets – I made my own but you can buy ready made

 

  1. Heat pan with a little low fat spray oil. Fry onion, carrots, pepper and garlic for a few minutes until softened.
  2. Add the mince and brown.
  3. Add the Italian herbs and Worcestershire sauce and stir through
  4. Add in tomato paste, oxo cubes, tin tomatoes and 200ml water and mix through until combined.
  5. Put lid on and simmer for 30 minutes
  6. Spread a layer of the beef mixture into a deep oven dish and then layer the lasagne sheets, then another layer of beef mixture, then layer lasagne sheets until you reach near the top.
  7. To make the sauce, mix yogurt, mustard, eggs & salt to taste with the cheese in a bowl until combined. (leave a little of the cheese to sprinkle on top)                      20191124_162224
  8. Spread the sauce mixture over the lasagne dish and garnish with pepper and leftover cheese.
  9. I baked using my Lasagne setting on my oven, or you can bake in an oven at 190 deg for about 30-35 minutes until browned.

Yummy!

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Moroccan Beef Pilaf

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Oh Yum, the flavours from this were amazing. I got this recipe from Scott Baptie’s High Protein Handbook 5, full of goodness too. You can check out his website here.

 

Serves 2

1 tbsp olive oil

1 red onion, finely chopped

1 clove garlic, finely chopped

300g Scottish steak mince

1 tsp Chilli powder

2 tsp mixed spice

1/2 tsp turmeric

150g Basmati rice

300ml Beef Stock

100g frozen peas

2 handfuls of Spinach

Seasoning (salt & pepper)

 

  1. Heat oil in a pan on medium to high heat
  2. Brown onion and garlic for a few minutes
  3. Add in the mince with seasoning and brown
  4. Add the spices and cook for a minute, add the rice and mix through until coated.
  5. Pour in the stock and simmer for about 15-20 minutes
  6. Add the peas and spinach and cook for a further 5 minutes or until all liquid has been absorbed.
  7. Serve. Yummy!

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Maple & Teriyaki Glaze Salmon

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Oh Yum. Eating Healthy is a priority for me, it makes me feel good and keeps me alert. Living in Scotland we have amazing fresh Salmon which is classified as an oily fish, salmon is considered to be healthy due to the fish’s high protein, high omega 3 fatty acids, and high Vitamin D.

I’m always looking for new flavours to try and this has got to be one of my favourites.

 

1 Serving

2 tbsp Maple Syrup

2 tbsp Teriyaki Sauce

1 tbsp Hot Sauce

1 Clove garlic

Salmon Fillet

Select of vegetables to serve.

 

  1. I put all the ingredients into a food bag and allowed to marinade for about 1 hour.
  2. Remove food from bag, keeping the marinade.
  3. I used my Crisper plate, place salmon and vegetables on and cook on Crisp function for about 4-5 minutes depending on thickness of Salmon. Alternatively pre-heat oven to 210 deg and place on greaseproof tray and bake for about 10 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, reduce the marinade sauce using a medium heat so that you have a thick sauce to pour over.

 

 

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Filipino Chicken Curry

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I recently purchased the new High Protein Handbook No. 5 from Scott Baptie, and this little recipe was my first one I tried, I have to say it was super tasty and very nutritious too.

 

Serves 2

1 tsp coconut oil

2 Chicken Breasts – chopped into chunks

1 sweet potato – chopped into chunks

1 onion – chopped

1 tsp dried garlic granules

1 tsp ginger

1 red pepper, chopped into chunks

1 tbsp curry powder

1 tsp paprika

1 tbsp fish sauce

200ml coconut milk

1 tsp chilli powder

Salt & pepper to taste

 

  1. Melt the coconut oil in a pan, season the chicken and add to the pan to brown then removed with a slotted spoon.
  2. Add the onion, pepper, sweet potato, garlic and ginger and brown.
  3. Add the chicken back to the pan and add the fish sauce, paprika, curry powder, chilli and coconut milk, reduce to a low simmer and cook covered for about 1-2 hours.
  4. Remove lid, turn heat up slightly and allow to cook uncovered for about 20-30 minutes or until the sauce thickens.
  5. Serve on its own or with some steamed wholemeal rice.

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Hunters Chicken with Saffron Bean Rice

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This is a classic dish in the U.K, good British pub food, I was keen to give it a go. Easy One pot cooking and can be slow cooked too. Traditionally its served with roast potatoes, however, having loads of rice to use up in my cupboard this was my preferred choice.

 

Serves 4

For the Chicken

4 Chicken Breasts

4 Bacon slices (smoked)

3 shallots, diced

2 tsp garlic granules or 2 cloves

1 400g tin chopped tomatoes

1 tbsp tomato puree

juice of 1/2 lemon

1 tsp smoked paprika

1/2 tsp crushed chilli flakes

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

2 tbsp white wine vinegar

1 tbsp hot sauce

1 tsp mustard powder

1 tsp sugar

80g reduced fat cheddar (healthier option)

For the Rice

150g Wholemeal Log Grain Rice

1 x 400g tin of mixed beans

Pinch of Saffron

300ml Vegetable Stock

75-100g chopped Chorizo

 

  1. Preheat oven to 180 deg.
  2. Wrap each chicken breast with the bacon slice and secure with a cocktail stick
  3. Put all of the other ingredients for the chicken into an ovenproof casserole dish with a tight lid.
  4. Place the chicken on top of the ingredients, put lid on and cook for about 1-2 hours.
  5. Remove from the oven and remove chicken breasts from the dish, set aside. Using a blender blitz the sauce until smooth.
  6. Place chicken into a dish, cover with the sauce and sprinkle the cheese over the top, place under a hot grill to melt the cheese.
  7. Place the rice, beans, chorizo, stock & saffron into the steam pot and cook on Steam setting for 20 minutes.
  8. Serve. Yummy!


Scottish Salmon & Sweet Potato Chowder

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I do love my salmon. This was a last minute little dish as I was going to have steamed teriyaki salmon and sweet potato fries tonight for dinner, but changed my mind as I fancied a warming soup type dish. It was delicious and with the lemon zest added that extra bit of flavour.

 

Makes 2 portions

2 Salmon Fillets – cut into chunks

1 large sweet potato – cut in 1 cm chunks

1 cup sweetcorn (I used frozen)

1 cup baby carrots ( I used frozen)

1 cup garden peas (I used frozen)

1 onion – chopped finely

1 tbsp butter

1 tsp dried dill

Salt & Pepper

200ml water

2 tbsp flour

150ml Milk

Grated Lemon zest and juice of 1 lemon

 

  1. In a large pot, melt the butter and saute the onion.
  2. Add in the sweet potato, sweetcorn, peas, carrots, dried dill, salt & pepper and mix.
  3. Pour in the water and bring to the boil, reduce and simmer covered for about 10 minutes or until sweet potatoes are tender.
  4. Whisk the flour into the milk and slowly add to the pan while stirring through.
  5. Add in the chunks of Salmon, remove the lid and simmer uncovered for about 5 minutes or until salmon is opaque. Be gentle but stir every now and again but watch not to beak up the salmon pieces.
  6. Squeeze in lemon juice and grated lemon zest. Serve with a turn of rainbow peppercorns.

 

 

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Slow Cook Mexican Beef Mince Tacos

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I have been wanting a Cast Iron Casserole Dish for a while now and my best friend came to the rescue, just out of the blue she gave me this lovely pot, so I just had to come up with a recipe to use it this weekend.

 

Serves 2

1 small onion chopped

1 can black beans, drained

1 can sweetcorn, drained

1 can chopped tomatoes

2 chopped peppers

300g Scottish beef mince

Mexican mix – 1 tsp cumin, 1 tsp smoked paprika, 1 tsp garlic, 1 tsp chilli powder, 1/2 tsp onion powder, salt & pepper.

200ml beef stock

 

  1. Pre heat your oven to Slow Cook Setting or around 90 deg.
  2. Brown the onions in a little oil, then add the peppers and brown, remove from pan
  3. Add the Beef mince and brown all over, adding salt & pepper to taste
  4. Add back to the pan the onions & peppers along with the sweetcorn, beans, tomatoes, seasoning and stock. Mix through and cook in oven for about 5-6 hours.

Corn Tacos & grated cheese to serve.

 

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Scottish Cod with Pea & Asparagus Mash

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Packed with 3 of your 5 a day this tasty meal is super high in vitamins and flavour.  Any excuse to get my KitchenAid mini processer out though…lol!

 

Makes 2 Servings

300 g Potatoes

1 bunch of asparagus

100g fresh peas or canned

1 red chilli

2 handfuls of baby spinach

2 Scottish cod fillets

1 lemon

 

  1. Wash the potatoes and cut into small chunks, keep skin on as that is where the most flavour is. Place in a pan of slightly salted boiling water and cook for about 10 minutes or until soft.
  2. Add the asparagus and peas to the pan and cook further for 3-4 minutes, drain and put into a food processor.                                                                          20190817_174846
  3. Add the spinach, lemon zest and seasoning to the processor and pulse until blended together.                                                                                                20190817_175820
  4. Cook your cod to your preferred method. I steam cooked mine but you could pan fry for crispy finish.
  5. Divide up the mash and serve with the cod on top, to finish sprinkle with chilli and lemon juice.
  6. Yummy!

 

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Chickpea & Scottish Salmon Cakes

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Had some Scottish Salmon for dinner tonight and 1/2 a can of chickpeas to use up, so I thought I’d cook something different. These were really tasty and so quick to cook too using my Crisperplate, just 10 minutes. You can of course gently fry these if you don’t have a Crisperplate.

I also wanted to use my Kitchenaid mini food processor, I got this last week, it’s a brilliant wee machine, so quick and a great size for smaller portions.

 

Makes 4

1 x 120g Scottish Salmon Fillet (cooked, I steam cooked mine)

200g chickpeas drained

1 tsp garlic granules

2 tbsp dried coriander

1 lime, zested & juice

1 tsp onion granules

1 egg

30g Panko breadcrumbs

Salt & Pepper to taste

 

  1. Place the chickpeas, garlic, coriander, lime, onion granules, egg, salt & pepper into a food processor and blitz until combined.                                                         20190730_122031
  2. Add in the cooked salmon and gently blitz, don’t break up too much.
  3. Add in the panko breadcrumbs and mix together. Mould into 4 cakes about 1 ” thick and place on some greaseproof paper and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

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  4. If using the Crisperplate, preheat for 2 minutes and place onto plate and cook for about 10 minutes. If using fry pan, add a little oil and cook for about 4 minutes each side.
  5. Serve. Yummy!

 

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Moroccan spiced Mince with Bulgur Wheat & Spinach

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I’m enjoying my Moroccan spices at the moment, the flavour is fragrant, fiery, sweet, savory, and citrusy, it really gets your senses moving.  Normally a traditional Moroccan meal would contain couscous but as I had some Bulgur Wheat to use up I decided on this. Bulgur is also a healthier and lower calorie choice too.

 

Makes 2 Servings

Spray oil

1 medium red onion, finely chopped

200g Scottish Beef Mince

1 tbsp cumin

1 tsp ground cinnamon

2 tsp turmeric

1 tbsp smoked paprika

1 tsp white pepper

1 tsp ground ginger

250ml vegetable stock

100g Spinach

30g Cashew nuts (slighty toasted and chopped)

80g Bulgur Wheat

Zest of 1 lemon

2 tbsp chopped fresh mint

Salt & pepper to taste

 

  1. Heat oil in a large fry pan and fry the onions until browned and softened
  2. Add in the beef mince and brown all over. Add in the spice mix and mix thoroughly.
  3. Add in the stock and bring to the boil, then simmer for about 15 minutes or until the stock thickens/evaporates slightly.
  4. Meanwhile, make the Bulgur Wheat as per packet instructions. Once cooked add in the spinach and cover with a lid, allow the residual heat to wilt the spinach down, mix through. Add in the lemon zest and mint and mix.
  5. Season, serve and sprinkle the toasted cashews on top. Yummy!

Goes well with a little glass of Rioja.

 

 

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Mince Beef Rogan Josh

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I’ve had an Indian Superfood Cookbook for ages but for some reason never actually attempted to make anything from it. So today was that day it got opened. I wish I had opened it up sooner, this dish was super tasty and full of good antioxidants. I served it with a chickpea chapati, made from my original Chapati recipe, I changed the plain flour for Gram Flour.

 

Serves 2

2 tbsp olive oil

2 tsp ground cardamom

2 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp salt

1 onion, sliced thinly

1 tsp garlic granules

1 tsp turmeric

1 tsp gram masala

1 400g can chopped tomatoes

1 tbsp grated fresh ginger

2-3 chillies chopped or 1 tsp chilli flakes

250g scottish beef mince

225g can of chickpeas

Small handful of Fresh coriander to serve.

 

  1. Heat the oil in a large fry pan
  2. Add in the onions with the cardamom, cumin, garlic, ginger, salt, turmeric, gram masala & chillies. Cook until onions are slightly browned and softened.
  3. Add in half of the tin tomatoes and cook for about 10 minutes or until the excess juices have dried off.                                                                          20190713_172151
  4. Add in the mince, mix well and cook until mince has browned all over, about 5 minutes.                                                                                                  20190713_172746
  5. Add in the remaining tomatoes & chickpeas, bring to the boil, cover & simmer for about 30 minutes. If the consistancey is too thick just add a little water.
  6. Season with the fresh coriander and serve.

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Roasted Squash & Chicken Laksa Bake

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Oh yummy, I was going through all my cookbooks and found this dish from Jamie Olivers Superfood Book. Was easy to make, very filling and very delicious. Fresh flavours and so nutritious. Squash is packed with Vitamin A which helps us see in the dark. Laksa originates from Southeast Asia, it is usually a noodle based soup with coconut.

 

Serves 2

2 sticks of lemongrass

2 cloves garlic

10cm piece of ginger

2 fresh chillies

3 spring onions

1 bunch of fresh coriander

80ml coconut cream

Splash white wine vinegar

Splash of Fish Sauce

Chicken Stock Cube with 700ml water

150g brown rice or wild rice

1 butternut squash

2 chicken breasts (or thighs)

1 tbsp Sesame oil

1 tbsp unsalted peanuts

1 lime.

 

  1. Preheat your oven to 180 deg.
  2. Bash the lemongrass and remove outer layers, peel the garlic and ginger and chop the spring onions and chillies roughly. Place all in a blender. Add the coriander, (reserving a few leaves for garnish) coconut cream, vinegar and fish sauce, blitz the mixture until smooth. This is your Laksa paste.                                              20190710_155318
  3. Crumble the chicken stock cube into your oven dish and add 700ml boiling water to dissolve. Add in the rice.
  4. Cut up the butternut squash into 4 rounds off the bulbous part, removing the seeds.  20190710_155752
  5. Cut the chicken breasts into large bite size pieces. Cover the chicken and butternut squash pieces with the Laksa paste.  Place them into the oven dish with the rice & water. Drizzle 1 tbsp sesame oil over the top.
  6. Bake for 1 hour 30 minutes.
  7. Before serving, toast the peanuts and chop into small bits, sprinkle on top with the coriander leaves and squeeze the juice from lime over the top. Serve.

 

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Moroccan Spiced Meatballs

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I served this little dish with my Moroccan Spiced Cauliflower as a tapas style dinner. These were so yummy and the sauce was rich with a little bit of sweetness.

 

Makes 8 Meatballs

200g scottish beef mince

30g panko breadcrumbs

1 egg

handful chopped coriander

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pepper

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp dried coriander

1/2 tsp minced ginger

225g tin chopped tomatoes

150ml beef stock

1 red onion – finely sliced

 

  1. Place everything in a bowl and mix. Shape into 1″ balls and chill in the fridge for about 30 minutes.
  2. Heat up a fry pan with spray oil and cook meatballs until browned all over.
  3. Add in the onions a cook until softened and slightly browned.
  4. Add in the tomatoes and beef stock, bring to the boil then simmer medium heat until sauce starts to thicken, about 15-20 minutes. serve.

 

 

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Chicken & Broccoli Casserole

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Love home comfort food? This is a great little dish that never fails to satisfy. Easy to make, economical and very filling. Using the Gruyere cheese gives it a lovely rich flavour and the panko breadcrumbs give it a lovely bite.

 

Serve 2

2 Chicken Breasts – cut into bite size pieces

200g broccoli florets – fresh

1 tbsp butter

1 brown onion, sliced thinly

100ml creme fraiche

200ml chicken stock

40g panko breadcrumbs

55g Gruyere Cheese, grated

Salt & pepper to taste

 

  1. Pre heat your oven to 200 deg.
  2. Bring a saucepan of salted water to the boil and add the broccoli, cook for 5 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a pan and cook the onions until browned and softened, about 4 minutes.
  4. Layer the broccoli, onion & chicken in an oven proof dish and season well with salt & pepper.                                                                                          20190707_195205
  5. Pour over the stock and creme fraiche, mix through.
  6. Using the remaining butter in the pan from onions add the breadcrumbs and cheese and mix through, only heat for about 1 minutes until panko crumbs go slightly brown and cheese is combined.                                                  20190707_195212
  7. Sprinkle the panko crumbs and cheese over the chicken in the dish and bake for about 25 minutes until golden brown.                                                              20190707_195615
  8. Serve & Enjoy!

 

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Honey Balsamic Chicken

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Oh yum. You can make these as an appetizer or as part of a main meal. I served these with my homemade Chow Mein , super tasty. They were sweet and sticky just what I wanted.

 

Makes 5 Skewers

2 Chicken Breasts – cut into chunks

For the Marinade:-

2 tbsp Balsamic Vinegar – good quality one.

2 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce

2 tsp onion powder

2 tbsp clear honey

1 tsp rainbow peppercorns

1 clove garlic crushed

1 tsp ginger grated

2 tsp sesame seeds – for garnish

 

  1. Mix up the marinade in a small bowl. With the exception of the sesame seeds
  2. Add in the chicken chunks and make sure they are covered completely with the marinade.  Leave to marinade in fridge for about 1-2 hours.                                                                20190622_174749
  3. Heat a little oil into a pan on medium to high heat. Skewer the chicken pieces onto a bamboo skewer. About 4 pieces is about right.
  4. Place in pan and turn down heat slightly, cook on each side for about 3-5 minutes until its golden brown and the liquid starts to caramelize.
  5. If you like extra sweetness you can baste a little more honey at this point, then sprinkle over the sesame seeds and serve.

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Salmon & Broccoli Pasta Bake

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Yum. Looking in my cupboards tonight I needed to use up an opened carton of tomatoes, packet of broccoli and cauliflower so this is what I came up with. Already planning on having salmon just didn’t know what with, so this was one of those delicious last minute meals. And under 500 calories it was healthier too.

 

Makes 2 portions

100g Wholemeal Fusilli Pasta (or penne if you prefer)

Handful or Broccoli florets and Cauliflower

1 tbsp low fat butter

1 tbsp plain flour

100ml skimmed milk

10g grated blue cheese (or cheddar if you prefer)

2 Scottish salmon fillets – cut into strips. (bite size pieces)

100g chopped tinned tomatoes

1 tbsp dried parsley

1 tbsp dried dill

Pepper to taste

1 tsp melted butter

2 tbsp panko breadcrumbs

 

  1. Pre heat oven to 180 deg
  2. Boil the pasta as per instructions and add the broccoli and cauliflower 4 minutes before ready.
  3. Meanwhile, to make the béchamel sauce melt 1 tbsp butter in a pan and add the flour, mix, slowly add in the milk, little at a time constantly whisking to prevent lumps. Remove from heat when it starts to thicken up. Then stir in the grated cheese.                                                                                              20190619_153535
  4. Mix the sauce into the pasta and empty into an oven proof dish, add the salmon and tomatoes and mix through. Season. Mix the panko breadcrumbs with the melted butter and sprinkle the panko breadcrumbs over.                                      20190619_154431
  5. Bake in the oven for approx 30 minutes. Serve.

 

 

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Cajun ‘Dirty’ Rice

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This recipe is so easy to make and a great quick and satisfying classic. The word ‘Dirty‘ comes from the fact it looks dirty with the colour of the minced beef.  Made with rice and vegetables this is so healthy too, at only approx 300 Kcal per serving.

 

Serves 4

150g Long Grain Brown Rice (or white if you prefer)

1 Chicken Stock Cube – (300ml water if steaming, using Steam pot)

400g Scottish minced beef

1 red onion – chopped finely

4 bacon medallions – diced

3-4 tsp Cajun seasoning (depending on how spicy you like it)

1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

1 carrot, diced

1 red pepper, diced

100g gardens peas

200ml beef stock

1 beef stock cube

bunch spring onions, sliced

 

  1. Cook the rice as per packet instructions. I used my Steam pot, decant rice into pot, add the frozen peas and chicken stock, cover and cook on Auto Rice setting for 18 minutes.                                                                                                    20190615_170431
  2. Meanwhile, spray a fry pan with low fat cooking spray, brown the mince, onions and bacon.                                                                                    20190615_165321
  3. Add in the Cajun seasoning, salt & pepper, worcestershire sauce and stir. Then add in the carrot, peppers and beef stock. Simmer for a few minutes until peppers are softened.                                                                                                      20190615_170415
  4. Add the cooked rice to the pan and mix through. Finish with the spring onions and serve. We served with some Corn Folded Flatbreads. Yummy!

 

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Chorizo & Bolognese Bake

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Yummy little dish, I got this recipe from Pinch of Nom and added my own stamp to it. I do love one pot cooking and especially slow cooking too, it is sometimes so good just to put something in the oven and carry on with your daily tasks.  This was slow cooked for 5 hours and was delicious. A really good simple throw together meal.

 

Makes 2 large servings

300g Scottish beef mince

350g passata

300g tin tomatoes

60g chopped chorizo

1 tbsp tomato puree

1 carrot, diced

1 red onion, diced

1 red pepper, diced

1 stick celery, diced

2 tsp garlic powder

1 tbsp worcestershire sauce

1 beef stock cube crumbled

1 tsp dried oregano

1 tsp dried basil

1/2 tsp dried rosemary

100g dried wholemeal pasta

150ml boiling water

40g low fat cheddar

Salt & pepper

 

  1. Set your oven to slow cook setting if you have one, if not this can be done in a slow cooker on med-high setting.                                                                          20190614_133920
  2. Firstly brown the mince in a pan with salt, pepper and garlic then remove and place into an oven proof dish                                                            20190614_122930
  3. Next add in all the other ingredients with the exception of the pasta, cheese and boiling water, cover and bake for 4.5 hours
  4. Add in the pasta and boiling water to the dish and mix through, bake for a further 30 minutes or until pasta is cooked through.                                                    20190614_165140
  5. 10 minutes before ready, sprinkle on the cheese and allow to melt through.                20190614_171811
  6. Serve. Yummy!

 

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Healthier option Sloppy Joes

Sloppy Joes is a traditional United States Dish and usually served on a Brioche Bun, but as I’m always looking for healthier options, this little alternative was simply superb and still very very tasty without the carb guilt. Thanks to PON again for another fab recipe.

 

Serves 2-4

1 onion finely chopped

2 garlic cloves finely chopped

1 green pepper, finely chopped

400g 5% fat scotch minced beef

1 tsp mustard powder

3 tbsp worcestershire sauce

3 tbsp tomato puree

1 tbsp red wine vinegar

120ml water

sea salt & rainbow pepper

1 red pepper cut lengthways

1 yellow pepper cut lengthways

40g reduced fat cheddar cheese

 

  1. Preheat oven to 200 deg.
  2. Spray a fry pan with a little oil and heat to medium heat.
  3. Add the onion, garlic & green pepper and cook until softened, about 5 minutes
  4. Add in the minced beef, turn up heat slightly and cook mince until browned            20190601_174356
  5. Then add in the mustard powder, worcestershire sauce, tomato puree, red wine vinegar and water, turn heat down and cook for about 5 minutes, season with salt & pepper                                                                                                    20190601_175209
  6. Divide the beef mixture between to pepper halves, scatter the cheese over and bake in oven for about 10 minutes.
  7. Serve. Yummy!

 


Cod in Soft Corn Tacos

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I love this recipe, another great find from PON

Quick & Easy to make, full of flavour, refreshing, light and only 190 Kcal per serving, whats not to like. We had these for lunch with a cheeky wee low cal beer. Yummy!

 

Serves 2

2 small Fresh cod Fillets cut into strips

1/4 tsp mild chilli powder

1/4 tsp garlic granules

1/4 tsp ground coriander

Salt & rainbow pepper

Handful of mixed leaves (I used watercress, spinach & rocket)

2 spring onions – finely chopped

4 small corn tortillas (or low calorie ones)

2 x Wedges of lime

4 tsp Low fat greek yoghurt

1 tsp chilli flakes

 

  1. Heat a little oil in a pan on high heat.
  2. Sprinkle Chilli powder, garlic and coriander over the fish slices and add the fish to the pan, cook for about 4 minutes then flip and cook for a further 3-4 minutes until slightly browned & crisp.
  3. Meanwhile, heat your tortillas as per packet instructions and place the green leaves, chopped spring onion and a little coriander onto the tortilla.
  4. Once fish is cooked through, place onto the green leaves, season with salt & pepper, add a dollop of yoghurt, sprinkle with chilli flakes and squeeze lime juice over, Serve. Yum Yum!

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Chicken Fajita Pie

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Oh yes!……I know your looking at that and thinking jeezo that looks super tasty……and guess what you’d be right.  Not only that, its only 492 Kcal per serving…..OMG! Tasty, Healthier, Lower in Calories and easy to make. Win! Win!

Another belter of a recipe from NOM!

 

Serves 4

3 Chicken Breasts – cut into strips, fat removed

2 yellow or red peppers thinly sliced

2 large onions thinly sliced

1 tbsp ground cumin

1/2 tbsp ground coriander

1 tsp mild chilli powder

1/2 tsp dried chilli flakes

salt & pepper to taste

1 x 500g carton passata

1 x 400g kidney beans

2 x low calorie corn tortillas

70g low fat mozzarella

40g reduced fat cheddar cheese

 

  1. Preheat your oven to 180 deg fan and line the base of a 24cm springform tin with baking paper
  2. Add the chicken strips to a low-medium heat fry pan and brown.
  3. Add in the peppers and onions and brown, then add in the spices and mix through until coated.
  4. Add in the passata and kidney beans and simmer for about 10-15 mins.
  5. Put a layer of the chicken mix into the springform tin, then layer with 1 of the tortillas, then another layer of chicken mix, then another tortilla then another layer of chicken mix. Top with chunks of mozzarella and sprinkle grated cheese over.
  6. Put into the oven for 25 minutes or until cheese is lovely and browned and bubbling. Serve.

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Cuban Beef

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OMG! Super tasty meal, super healthy & low in calories, at only 417 Kcal per portion. Another thanks to PON for this recipe. The meat is so tender due to the slow cook match with cuban spices this is a real treat.

 

Serves 4

500g stewing scotch beef (fat removed)

Salt & pepper

2 onions sliced

240ml beef stock (2 stock cubes)

1 x 400g tin tomatoes chopped

2 green & red peppers, cut into strips

4 garlic cloves – crushed

2 tbsp tomato puree

1 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp dried oregano

1/2 tsp ground turmeric

1 tbsp fresh coriander

50ml red wine (or you can use a stock pot for less calories)

1 tbsp white wine vinegar

Cooked rice to serve (corn tortilla wraps optional)

 

  1. Season the meat well and brown over a high heat in a pan, remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.
  2. Add the onions to the pan and saute for about 3-4 mins
  3. Add the remaining ingredients to the pan and the browned meat