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.
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
Heat the oil in a pan on medium to high heat, season the chicken and brown all over.
Add the peppers and onion to the pan and cook for about 3 minutes until softened.
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.
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!
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.
Serves2 – 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
Heat the oil in a pan on medium to high heat and fry the onions until softened and slightly browned
Add in the beef mince, season with salt & pepper & brown.
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.
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.
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.
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
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.
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.
Return the mince to the pot with the beef stock, bring to the boil then simmer and cook covered for about 30 minutes.
Add the lentils, spinach and coriander to the pot and cook uncovered for 10 minutes.
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.
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
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.
Add in the garlic & nutmeg along with the onion and fry until softened then add the bacon and fry until cooked slightly, few minutes.
Add to the pan the potatoes, carrots, parsnips and mix, then add in the chicken stock & bring to the boil.
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.
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.
Serve with some lovely fresh crusty bread. Or if you are Scottish it has to be Plain Bread!
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.
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)
1 tsp garlic granules
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
1 tsp gram masala
Mix all the Curry Paste ingredients into a blender and mix until you get a smooth paste.
Heat a little oil in a pan on medium to high heat, add chicken, season and brown.
Add the Curry paste to the pan and heat through for about 2 minutes.
Next add the tomato paste, almond milk, cinnamon and chilli powder and mix through.
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.
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.
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
1 tsp white pepper
1 tsp All Spice (cinnamon, nutmeg & cloves)
1 pint of vegetable stock
2 medium potatoes – cubed
Preheat your oven to 160 deg on fan.
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.
In the same pan fry the onion and brown the bacon rashers for a few minutes.
Add the potatoes & celery & mix through for a few minutes.
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.
The stock should have absorbed into the meat & veg. Serve. Yummy!
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!
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
1 red onion chopped
1 tsp curry powder
100g Spinach – I chopped finely
Seasoning (salt & pepper)
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.
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.
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
Preheat oven to 180 deg.
Wrap each chicken breast with the bacon slice and secure with a cocktail stick
Put all of the other ingredients for the chicken into an ovenproof casserole dish with a tight lid.
Place the chicken on top of the ingredients, put lid on and cook for about 1-2 hours.
Remove from the oven and remove chicken breasts from the dish, set aside. Using a blender blitz the sauce until smooth.
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.
Place the rice, beans, chorizo, stock & saffron into the steam pot and cook on Steam setting for 20 minutes.