19 Nov 2013


Hot and spicy lamb stuffed pitta with watercress and spinach salad dressed with the spicy oils from the kofte finished off with a touch of mango chutney
Each pitta approx.:  307 kcal  / 13.3g fat / 6.5g sat fat / 26.3g carb / 19.2g protein
(serves 4)
300g lean minced lamb
1 tbsp crushed chillies
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp harissa paste
1 tsp curry powder
salt and pepper
100g watercress
100g spinach
4 tsp mango chutney
4 wholemeal pitta breads
A real quick and speedy supper, mix all the spices with the lamb and squeeze together to form patties or sausage shape torpedo's.  In a non-stick pan, no need for oil as the lamb has enough fat, pan sear the patties, I like to caramelise each side adding more flavour, these take approx 7 minutes to cook, once cooked leave the lamb to rest while you toast your pittas, spring open and paint on the mango chutney, this makes the mango flavour go further therefore keeping the calorie count down. 
Stuff the pittas with the spinach and watercress salad and your rested lamb kofte.  The hot and spicy flavours from the lamb will ooze out acting like a oil dressing on the salad in the pitta bread making this a really flavoursome supper without being full of fat or calories.

10 Nov 2013


This is a great healthy low fat filling dinner, full of antioxidants that stimulate liver support and antibacterial properties from the garlic and circulation stimulation from the chilli, along with beatcarotenes that protect the heart, riboflavin, niacin, vitamins C, B2, B12, selenium and zinc from a sprinkling of  Furikake (furry car key) a natural Japanese seasoning of black and white sesame seeds, nori seaweed and red shiso leaves.
Approx:  319 kcal / 4.8g fat / 0.8g sat fat / 42.6g carbs / 33.2g protein
(serves 1)
125g turkey breast sliced
10ml soy sauce
100g broccoli florets
50g greens sliced
40g red pepper diced
1 garlic clove grated
1 tsp grated ginger
1/2 tsp Harissa paste
75g cooked brown or white rice
pinch of Japanese furikake seasoning
This only takes 15 minutes to prepare and cook.  First put the rice in a sauce pan with twice the amount in water and simmer for 6 minutes, take off the heat but do not lift the saucepan lid, leave to one side for 10 minutes and you will have perfect cooked rice ready to serve.
Put a pan of water on to boil, once simmering add the broccoli and greens and blanch for 4 minutes, remove from the heat, meanwhile heat a non stick pan and pan sear the turkey with the soy sauce, add the garlic, ginger and red pepper, then add the broccoli and greens once blanched, add a little of the greens water if the turkey is sticking, add the harissa paste and season to taste, serve with rice and a sprinkling of furikake seasoning and crushed chillies.

7 Nov 2013


This is a non guilt full flavour low fat chicken and wild mushroom stroganoff filo pie, the filo pastry is low in fat and does not disappoint as a pie crust.  The hot smoked paprika rich creamy wild mushroom and dark chicken meat filling is everything it promises to be, Ooh I Love a Pie...
Each pie approx.: Kcal 309 / 23g fat / 5.2g sat fat / 26.6g carbs / 14.5g protein
Such a passion for the Mushroom and Pie, I love this time of the year where mushrooms are growing wild everywhere.  We have recently been on a mushroom foray and found 28 different species of mushrooms in our local woods.  I was most pleased when we were encouraged to pick some, we took a Cep, Chicken of the Woods and some winter Chanterelles , I look forward to learning more in depth knowledge to forage for mushrooms on our own, but I am secretly still a bit of a scaredy cat at the moment!
(makes 4 pies)
300g mixed mushrooms
4 chicken thighs meat only
1 small onion fine diced
2 cloves garlic fine diced
salt and pepper
1 tsp smoked hot paprika
2 tbsp ghee
250ml white wine
1 chicken jelly stock pot in 100ml water
1 can low fat Campbells mushroom soup
200g crème fraiche 1/2 fat
1/2 juice of a lemon
1 pack of filo pastry
Pan fry the onions and garlic in a little of the ghee until soft but not coloured, remove to the side, gently cook the mushrooms for two minutes, mushrooms only need to kiss the pan, remove and place with the onions, now add the chicken thigh meat and sear, sprinkle over the hot paprika and season, add the white wine which will de-glaze the pan lifting all the gorgeous flavours into the sauce and reduce by half, add the chicken stock, crème fraiche, Campbell's mushroom soup and stir well. 
Add back in all the mushrooms, garlic and onion to the sauce and bring up to a simmer and taste for seasoning, then leave to one side to cool before we place in the pie crusts.
I have allowed two sheets of filo per pie, which is generous and gives more depth to the pie crust,this is so you really feel you are getting more pie crust than you should when on a reduced calorie intake.  Line your individual or one large pie tin with the filo pastry, this is such a forgiving pastry so don't worry if you tear the sheets, make sure that the filo goes up and hangs over the top of the pie tin by a few inches, this is because you will fold these overhangs into the centre of the pie to create the pie crust top, brush with egg wash and bake for 20-25 minutes and enjoy.

4 Nov 2013


Love this time of the year, it is great fun to make and decorate these muffins with the children and even more fun to eat them!  Recipe below and then each muffin once cooled is topped with coloured butter icing then as follows:
Ready to roll regal icing red, yellow and blue.  I grated the blue icing to create the strands, and then shaped the lips and teeth and eyebrow, the eye is a chocolate covered candy ball.
On a piece of grease proof paper draw a witches head, then using coloured icing pens fill in the face and ice on the features, leave to dry.  Using some black regal ready to roll icing shape the hat and with the coloured icing pens draw a green ribbon and black square buckle.
Take an Oreo cookie, roll out some white regal icing and cut in to strips roughly the same thickness and then wrap up the Oreo cookie and with the icing pens draw on the eye with two colours looking through the bandages.
This is really quite simple but stunning, chocolate butter icing topped with a peeled Satsuma and a stalk made from celery, Ta-daa !
Using the black icing pen draw on your spiders web and with some black regal icing make your spider and place him/her on your web.

Again quick and easy on some grease proof paper draw a skull and using the icing writing pens fill in and draw your skull, decorate the eyes and mouth, leave to dry and peel off and stick on.
(makes 12)
2 eggs beaten
200g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla
125ml vegetable oil
250ml milk
Blueberries or chocolate chips
400g self raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
Beat the eggs until light and fluffy, add all of the sugar and vanilla and beat for a further couple of minutes, gently whisk in the oil and milk and your choice of flavours, chocolate chips, fresh blueberries which melt while cooking so you have pockets of gorgeous blueberry jam, how about cherry's and chocolate or banoffi and banana.
Now mix all the dry ingredients together, the flour, baking powder and salt, give a little whisk, this is to remove the lumps and easier than using a sieve, fold into the wet mixture, the secret to a good muffin is not to over mix, you will want some little clumps of flour in the mix, this puffs up during cooking giving you that classic muffin top.  Fill your muffin cases two thirds only, this allows the muffin to rise up nice and high.
Bake in a pre-heated oven 170 degrees for 23 minutes, eat immediately or leave to cool and then decorate. 

3 Nov 2013


This is a wonderful simple quick recipe for all the pumpkins we have carved out over Halloween, a rich coconut vibrant zingy curry that is perfect for a almost winter's night, warm creamy and  huggingly comforting, for some heat sprinkle over fresh sliced chillies.
1 glug of ooil
1 onion fine diced
1 tbsp grated ginger
2 grated garlic cloves
2 tbsp curry powder
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 jelly chicken or veg stock
300ml water
1ltr coconut milk
Diced pumpkin
1/2 lime juiced
bunch fresh coriander
salt and pepper
Pan fry the onion, ginger and garlic in the ooil for five minutes until soft but not coloured, add the curry powder, turmeric and seasoning, pan fry for a few a couple of minutes, then add the chicken or vegetable jelly stock pot, water, coconut milk and bring to a simmer, add the diced pumpkin, or squash and simmer for 30 minutes until cooked, sprinkle over the coriander and serve with rice.
For great presentation serve the curry in a baked pumpkin, bake a hollowed out pumpkin in a moderate oven for 50 minutes and fill with the hot coconut curry.