Chicken Stir Fry.

Now I know a stir fry is hardly the thing of Michelin starred chefs, but when you’re in a hurry there’s nothing better – it’s healthy, hearty and nutritious. Add in some meat or fish for protein and you’re golden.

IMG_1838

My go-to sauce for stir fry is one my mum always cooks and is composed of just two ingredients. Mum uses soy sauce, but since I found out I’m wheat intolerant I swap that for tamari which I actually prefer (don’t tell mum!). The other key ingredient is raw honey.

IMG_1839

Ingredients:

1 bag of stir fry veg

200-300g cooked chicken, shredded

honey

tamari

rapeseed oil

Heat the oil up and add the chicken, to brown. Throw in the veg and stir to heat up. In a bowl, mix the honey and tamari at a ratio of 2 Tbsp. of honey to 1 Tbsp. tamari. How much of this quantity you make depends how saucy (ooh la la) you want your stir fry. Add it and stir to coat, then serve.

IMG_1852

Advertisements

Lemon and Garlic Chicken.

I’ve been feeling a bit under the weather recently. Kind of like a man flu thing; I’m exhausted and just want to sleep. On top of that, I’ve got a nasty chesty cough which is keeping me up all night (probably why I’m exhausted) and I keep going hot to cold (although the weather can’t make up it’s mind either so I don’t know if it’s just me!). Maybe a little more than man flu perhaps..

IMG_1249

Anyway, duty called and I had to make dinner. I love cooking, but when you just want to slump it can feel like a burden. This recipe however is so simple you could do it in your sleep! And then at the end of it you get a fabulously juicy, tasty chicken dish – perfect with a simple side salad for summer.

I go on the basis of 2 chicken thighs per person, and 1 lemon per person, so it’s easy to double up if needs be.

Ingredients for 4:

8 chicken thighs, skin on, bone in

4 lemons, quartered

2 bulbs of garlic

salt and pepper

rapeseed oil

oregano

Preheat your oven to 180C and tear up the garlic bulb. Don’t bother peeling them – they’ll caramelise and you can squeeze out the lovely garlic over the chicken when it’s cooked. Grease your roasting tin with oil and place your thighs (not YOUR thighs, silly) in the middle. Surround with the lemon and throw the garlic willy nilly around the dish. Add a good glug of oil.

IMG_1247

Season the dish with salt and pepper and cover the chicken with oregano. Place the dish in the oven for about 30 minutes, then serve up. Remember to squeeze the lemon and garlic all over the chicken!

IMG_1251

 

 

Blackened Chicken with Avocado Sauce.

Normally if I see “blackened”, I immediately think fish – blackened salmon, blackened catfish… But as I had neither of those in my fridge, I went for blackened chicken. Blackened basically just means cajun; the mix of spices screams deep south to me! (Wow, I’ve said blackened A LOT in these last few sentences…).

IMG_1206

I made this once before when living in France, but my spice cupboard was measly (i.e. non-existent) so a pre-bought Mexican spice thing had to suffice. This one is a bit tastier, and you mix your own spices so it’s more to your taste.

IMG_1209

And the avocado? Mixed with some plain yoghurt you create a creamy spread to slather over your chicken and quinoa, and it makes enough so you can spread it on your toast in the morning. Maybe with a slice or two of deli ham? I don’t see why not.

IMG_1205

Ingredients:

1 chicken breast

1/2 mugful quinoa

1 mug boiling water mixed with 1/2 a stock cube

2 spring onions, chopped

1 Tsp. paprika

1 Tsp. cumin

1/2 Tsp. cayenne pepper

sprinkle of sea salt

1 avocado

250ml plain yoghurt (Greek would work too!)

1 Tsp. garlic powder

1 Tsp. coconut oil

Firstly, put the spices in a bowl and add in the chicken. Rub the spices all over until it’s covered. Heat a pan on medium heat with the coconut oil and add the chicken. It should take about 8 minutes either side, so keep an eye on it!

Once you’ve got the chicken cooking, start on the quinoa. Add the quinoa and the stock to a pan and keep on a rolling boil, stirring occasionally. It’s cooked when there’s no water left, about 15 minutes.

Now the main time consuming parts are cooking, make the avocado sauce. Add the avocado, yoghurt and garlic powder to a food processor and blitz. It might look a touch lumpy, but because avocado is smooth and creamy anyway it won’t taste it! Remember to turn your chicken!

Once the chicken is fully cooked and there is no water in the quinoa, throw in the spring onions to the quinoa and serve it up.

IMG_1208

Healthier Chicken Caesar Salad

I love chicken Caesar salads SOOOO much, but the high calorie and fat content rather pisses me off – it’s a salad for god’s sake! If I wanted that many calories, I’d order burger and chips! So here is my alternative; I can’t claim it’s fat free or anything bogus like that, but it is lighter than the original and even better than that – you can’t tell the difference!

IMG_0279

Ingredients:

  • 1 chicken thigh, deboned and skinless
  • 1 rasher of bacon
  • Fry Light
  • 1 small gem lettuce
  • 5 cherry tomatoes, halved

For the Caesar dressing:

  • 3-4 Tsp. low fat yoghurt
  • 2 Tsp. light crème fraiche
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 30g finely grated cheddar
  • 1 anchovy, chopped finely (you need the anchovy to make it near as possible to an authentic Caesar dressing – you can’t taste it, I promise!)

IMG_0281

 

Method:

Make the dressing by mixing all the ingredients together in a bowl. Use the back side of a spoon to mash the anchovy as finely as possible – you don’t want chunks of it.

Arrange your salad. Take the gem lettuce and cut it into eighths, then add in the cherry tomatoes.

Sandwich the chicken between two pieces of cling film and bash with a rolling pin until it’s about 1cm thick. Heat about a tablespoon of oil in a frying pan and add the chicken. Cook for about 4 minutes either side, or until it’s not pink on the inside. Add the bacon to the pan in the last 2 minutes and fry for one minute either side.

Cut the bacon and chicken into bite size pieces and add to the arranged lettuce. Drizzle on the salad dressing and a sprinkling of salt and pepper and enjoy.

IMG_0280

Chicken salad bowl

I love the simplicity of this dish, but it still manages to pack in a helluva lot of flavour. Filling but light enough for a summer’s eve, this will soon be a staple in our household! I hope you like it.

  • Ingredients:
  • 6 boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into pieces 
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced or grated
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon sumaq (you can get this in any health food shop or online)
  • 2 Tbsp. dried parsley
  • 1 Tbsp. dried basil
  • 1 1/2 mugs jasmine or basmati rice
  • 3 mugs water
  • 2 red pepper, cut into fourths
  • 1 courgette, sliced into 1/4 inch rounds
  • 2 avocados, mashed very well
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 clove garlic, minced or grated
  • salt + pepper, to taste
  • 1 punnet cherry tomatoes, halved
Instructions: 
  1. In a large bowl combine the olive oil, garlic, onion powder, sumaq, pepper, cayenne, smoked paprika, parsley and basil. Add the chicken and toss well. Cover and place in the fridge while you prepare the rest of the meal.
  2. Make the rice. Add the water to a medium size pot. Bring to a low boil and then add the rice. Stir to combine and then place the lid on the pot and turn the heat down to the lowest setting possible. Allow the rice to cook ten minutes on low and then turn the heat off completely and let the rice sit on the stove, covered for another 20 minutes (don’t take any peeks inside!). After 20 minutes remove the lid and fluff the rice with a fork. Note that rice can cook differently for everyone, this is just what works for me.
  3. Add the red pepper and courgette to a gallon size ziplock bag. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper. Seal the bag and shake well so the veggies are coated with olive oil.
  4. Grill the chicken for 3-4 minutes per side, gently flipping 2-3 times until chicken is cooked through and has light char marks. While the chicken is grilling grill the courgette for about 4 minutes on each side, or until tender and the red peppers for about 5 minutes flipping once or twice during cooking.
  5. Remove everything from the grill and let cool 5 minutes. Once cool slice the red peppers into strips and if you have whole chicken breast cut those into cubes.
  6. Add the mashed avocados to a bowl. Stir in the lemon juice, parsley, garlic and salt and pepper to taste. Mix well.
  7. To assemble the bowls, divide the rice among 4 bowls or plates. Top each bowl of rice with equal amounts of chicken, grilled peppers and courgette. Add a large dollop of the avocados and then add the fresh tomatoes and walnuts. Sprinkle with blue cheese if desired. Serve warm.