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!
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.
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.
Meanwhile, make your sauce as per above recipe.
Remove fish and place onto a chopping board and remove the skin, break up into bite size pieces.
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.
Oh yum! I wanted to try broccoli rice in my new KitchenAid mini Food Processor and then decided to turn it into little fitters, these were super tasty and so nutritious. These are freezeable so you can make a large batch for later in the week.
200g Broccoli – fresh
80g Gram Flour (Chickpea Flour), you can use almond flour or plain flour too.
30g shredded cheese (I used Le Gruyere but parmesan would be nice too)
1 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp mixed pepper
1 tsp onion granules
1 tsp garlic granules
In a bowl add flour, salt, pepper, paprika, onion and garlic granules, cheese, flour and egg, mix together
Blitz the broccoli in a food processor and add to the mixture, bring together. If its a little too sticky, just add in some extra flour.
Taking a ladle, scoop some mixture and place into a hot pan with a little oil or Crisperplate (if using), cook for about 4 minutes on each side or until slightly browned. You could also bake in an oven at about 200 deg for about 20-30 minutes.
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.
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
Pre heat your oven to 200 deg.
Bring a saucepan of salted water to the boil and add the broccoli, cook for 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, melt the butter in a pan and cook the onions until browned and softened, about 4 minutes.
Layer the broccoli, onion & chicken in an oven proof dish and season well with salt & pepper.
Pour over the stock and creme fraiche, mix through.
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.
Sprinkle the panko crumbs and cheese over the chicken in the dish and bake for about 25 minutes until golden brown.
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)
Boil the pasta as per instructions and add the broccoli and cauliflower 4 minutes before ready.
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.
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.
I just love fresh pasta, ever since I got my new pasta attachment for my Kitchen Aid Machine I’ve never bought dried pasta again. Having to use up some pesto I had left, this little dish was the result. The sun dried tomatoes just added that little extra flavour.
For the pasta:
275g ‘OO’ Grade Pasta Flour
3 large eggs
Sift the flour into the large bowl on Kitchen Aid mixer or work surface.
Make a well in the middle. Crack one egg in and whisk gently.
Gently with your hands start to incorporate the flour starting at the bottom, once it starts to come together crack the 2nd egg, then the 3rd until it becomes sticky.
Using the dough hook on the mixer, knead together until you get a smooth like dough. Remove, cover with cling film and leave for about 1 hour.
Attach the pasta attachment, cut the pasta dough into 4 sections.
Flatten dough with hand then feed through the pasta maker, No. 1 x 5, No. 3 x 2, No. 5/6 x 1
Change attachment to fettuccine and feed through. Hang until ready to cook.
Heat a large pan of slightly salted water and cook for about 3-4 minutes. Strain
For the toppings:
2 chicken breasts
1/4 jar sundried tomatoes
3 tbsp green pesto
Handfuls of Broccoli & Baby Spinach
I steam cooked my chicken, broccoli and Spinach. (8 minutes for chicken, 3 minutes for veg)
Slice chicken into bite size pieces.
Place pasta into a bowl with chicken, broccoli, spinach and sundried tomatoes, spoon the pest into the bowl and mix through until chicken and pasta is coated.
If you have read my last few posts, you will know I got a massive 2.5kg bag of potatoes for 29p last week……I know right….so cheap! So my task this week was to use them all…lol! Today I had to use up some leftover vegetables so I decided on pesto Potatoes……this was so delicious, nutritious and a filling meal.
4 Maris piper potatoes – cut into bite size pieces (I left skin on, more flavour)
Handful or Broccoli
Salt & pepper
Green Pesto – 3 tbsps (see recipe below)
clove of garlic crushed
Fresh Basil – large bunch
handful of pine nuts – about 100g
Parmesan Cheese – grated
Place garlic and basil leaves in a blender and pulse until chopped
Add in the pine nuts (toasted) and parmesan and pulse to blend
Slowly add in some olive oil, just enough to bring it all together, then squeeze in the lemon juice. Serve.
Cook potatoes through until soft, you can either boil or steam cook, 4 minutes before you think they are ready, pour in some peas to the potatoes and simmer.
Meanwhile, Steam cook your broccoli and spinach for 3 minutes.
Drain potatoes and put into a large bowl, add in the spinach and broccoli
Spoon 3 heaped tbsp of pesto and mix through, season
Serve into a bowl or plate and top with some pine nuts for extra crunch.
One of my favourite meals is my waffle crusted chicken and Maple sauce, I thought I would try a more healthier accompaniment tonight.
I had some Broccoli to use up and decided on some little courgettes. These were really tasty and also low in fat.
Makes about 10 croquettes
1 large broccoli (about 3 cup fulls of florets)
2 eggs beaten
salt & pepper
1 small onion – finely chopped
1/2 cup of panko breadcrumbs
1 cup of reduced fat cheddar cheese – grated
1/2 tsp garlic powder
Preheat oven to 210 deg.
Blanch the broccoli in boiling water for 1 min, then transfer to cold water to stop cooking. Dry off excess water and chop broccoli finely.
Put eggs, cheese, onion, garlic, sat & pepper into a large mixing bowl then tip in the broccoli and mix through. Add in the panko breadcrumbs and mix again. Place in the fridge for about 1/2 hour to chill, this will help when making croquettes.
Line a baking tray with greaseproof paper. Take a small amount into the cup of your hands and shape into a croquette. Place on baking tray and spray with oil. Sprinkle a little paprika on each one and bake for 10 mins.
Turn over, spray with oil and bake for a further 10 mins or until golden brown and crispy.
Had to use up some vegetables in my fridge up, if you’re like me, I hate waste, and I buy loads thinking I’m going to be good this week and have veg every day….some days that doesn’t work out so I’m left with a lot. I decided to do something I’ve never tried before and simply just mash it all up. Wanted to add some flavour and decided a Mediterranean flavour should be o.k.
Makes 1 Pepper
1 x Orange Pepper – Roasted and cut in half
2 x Carrots
Handful Broccoli (approx 50g)
30g Green Beans – chopped
2 tbsp Tomato Passata (I had some left in my fridge thought I’d chuck in it to help bind)
1 tsp basil
1 tsp spiced crushed red pepper (my fav from Costco), this gives a lovely kick!
Pre-heat oven to 220 deg. Cut pepper in half and spray with oil, place in a foil lined baking tin and bake in oven for 20 minutes.
Cook vegetables either boil or steam, I always steam as it’s healthier and much more tastier.
Once vegetables are cooked, place in a food processor or blender with the passata and herbs n spices until mix through.
Once peppers are ready remove from oven and fill with the veg mix. Serve. Yummy!
Of course you can tailor to your own tastes with any vegetable and any type of spice and herbs, the list is endless.
I do like it when you get a success in the kitchen! Happy Days!
Looking in my fridge tonight I had a lot of greens needing to be used up, so as I had a curried meal last night I decided to go with Oriental, and it worked our deliciously. Don’t you just love it when you just fling everything in last minute and you create a delicious meal for yourself.
150g Breast Turkey
50g Trimmed Green Beans
2 tbsp soya sauce
1 tbsp chinese five spice
1 tbsp sesame seeds
1 tbsp crushed red pepper
Spray oil a griddle pan and heat to a high heat
Rub chinese five spice into turkey breast, then cook on griddle pan for approx 5-6 mins each side or until cooked through.
Meanwhile, place all the greens, (broccoli, kale and green beans in a steamer and steam for about 5 mins)
Peel carrot skin off then slice into thin strips
Once veg is cooked, mix in the carrot, soy sauce, sesame seeds and red pepper.
Place veg mix onto a plate and top with the turkey breast. Yum!
Using some leftovers, I made a stew and decided to have some Kale with it for a healthier option, I know a bit weird combination, but it really worked!
Serves 1 – Approx 490 calories
200g Scottish Stewing steak – cubed
Flour to coat
1 carrot – sliced
1 stalk celery – chopped
2/3 shallots halved
Handful of broccoli
2 Handfuls Kale
350ml Beef stock
Salt and pepper to taste
2 Bay leaves
1. Heat a little oil in a pan and coat the steak cubes with the flour, season with salt and pepper then lightly fry steak cubes until browned.
2. Add in the shallots and cook for a further 3 mins, add in the carrots, celery, broccoli, bay leaf and stock, bring to the boil and then simmer on a very low heat for approx 3-4 hours so the meat is tender. I used Setting No. 2 on my Induction Hob. You can also decant into a casserole dish and cook in a fan oven at 90 deg for approx 8 hours.
3. Approx 10 mins before serving, bring a pan of water to boil and put in Kale, reduce and simmer for approx 8-10mins.
4. Drain Kale, put on plate. Remove stew with a slotted spoon and place onto Kale, you don’t want to much of the gravy as the Kale would be soggy. Season with some cracked black pepper. Yum!