Friday 26 August 2011

Pan Fried Lemon Fish

I used Plaice fish for this recipe but I think it would be great with any light flavored fish, like white fish, cod, haddock or sea bass, anything with a mild flavor. Really simple meal, throw it together and you’re done with dinner. Serves 2. Sorry I forgot to take a photo!


2 Plaice Fillets
1 lemon
1 onion
3-4 cloves garlic
3-4 leaves basil (fresh or frozen, not dried)
1 glass white wine
½ chicken stock cube
2 tbsp. flour
2 tbsp olive oil

To cook:
Dice the onion and garlic, set aside.
Lay the fillets on a plate and salt and pepper them.
Squeeze half the lemon on the fish.
In a large sauté pan, heat oil, when hot add the onions and garlic, and quickly sauté.
When soft, add the flour, and cook into oil for about 5-7 minutes.
Sprinkle on the stock cube.
Add the glass of wine and reduce down to on low.
Add the basil leaves and salt and pepper to taste.
Next add the fish fillets to the sauce, cover and cook for another 5-10 minutes.
To finish squeeze the other half of the lemon on the fish and serve.

Wednesday 24 August 2011

Hugo's Pasta Mama

My 51st post is not even my recipe! But it comes from a restaurant in Los Angeles called Hugo’s and I saw it on a special about favorite comfort foods. This looked so delicious I had to track down the recipe and make it, and it was amazing. It’s so simple and I just looked at the ingredients and simplified it for me as I made it for myself as a test. So you can adjust the pasta and eggs according to your size needs. It’s also a really good idea to weigh your pastas and rice, it makes eating the right portion easier. I suggest this because as an American in this country weighing my food was another transition to get it right, and turned out it was the best thing for my eating habits, no longer eating for two!


1 serving of pasta (I used egg tagliatelle)
1 large egg beaten
1 garlic clove
Handful parsley
2 tbsp parmesan cheese
1 tbsp olive oil

To start:
Make the pasta according to the directions, set aside.
Mince garlic.

To cook:
Add oil in a skillet until hot, sauté the garlic.
Quickly add the pasta and stir around. 1-2 min. If your pasta has gotten dry add a few tbsp. water.
Add the egg, parsley and mix thoroughly until the egg is cooked.
Add the parmesan and serve warm.

Monday 22 August 2011

Beefy Rice Skillet

This is one of those throw together dinners that turned out delicious. It also fed us for a few days which was a plus. So it will serve a family of 4 easily with a side salad. I served mine with steamed cabbage.

400-500g ground beef (Or 1lb)
1-2 small courgettes (zucchini)
1 onion
2 cloves garlic
½ red pepper
1 can crushed/chopped tomatoes
1 c white rice
2 cups water
1 tbsp. oil
1 beef bouillon cube
1 tsp. cumin powder
1 tsp. chili powder
*TINY* pinch cinnamon (it brings out the flavor, don’t overdo it ;)

To Start:
Dice onion, red pepper, courgettes, garlic; set aside.

To cook:
Heat a large skillet with oil and brown the beef.
Add the veggies and sauté for about 5 minutes.
Next add the rice and the seasonings and cook for 5 minutes being careful not to burn the rice.
Add the can of tomatoes and water; bring to a boil then turn down to low, cover and simmer for 20 minutes.

Friday 19 August 2011

Gina's Tuna Pasta Mama

This recipe was requested by a couple people and here it is! There are a few ingredients that can be omitted or changed in quantity if you want more or less of it. I usually only make this for myself and use whole wheat fusilli pasta, and boil it for longer than it says so it turns soft enough to resemble white pasta with all the whole grain nutrition! Also if I keep my portion of pasta down I can compensate with veggies and get a couple portions of pasta salad! Try it!

75g (per person ~3/4c) whole wheat fusilli pasta
1 can tuna drained
2 hardboiled eggs
1 tomato
Half green pepper
1 ribs celery
1 small can of black olives (~100-150g)
½ red onion
½ c frozen peas
3 tbsp. – ¼ c light mayonnaise
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tbsp. of ranch dressing packet
Fresh pepper

To start:
Start the water to boil the eggs and continue until you peel them.
Start the water for the pasta, and continue until done.
Note: place the frozen peas in the colander and when you drain the pasta the hot water will thaw the peas.

To finish:
Fine dice tomatoes, green pepper, celery, onion, and egg and place into large bowl.
When the pasta is done add to the bowl, mix up with the seasonings and mayonnaise adjusting seasoning as you like.
This will keep well for two days.

Wednesday 17 August 2011

Beef Stroganoff According to Gina

This is one of my favorite things to throw together as a quick weeknight meal. The only thing I strongly advise is to watch carefully the temperature before you decide to add the sour cream. The sauce will break and it will look ugly and curdled. Other than that, simple easy! Feeds 4. It was so good I forgot to snap a photo!

350-400g (14 oz) beef – I like to use the stir-fry strips.
200-300g mushrooms – any kind you like
1 onion
3 cloves garlic
½ beef stock cube
Hot water
1-2 tbsp. tomato puree
1 c low fat soured cream (or cream, crème fraiche, yogurt)
1 tbsp. oil
2 sprigs fresh thyme

To start:
Dice onions, garlic, set aside.
Slice mushrooms.

To Cook:
Heat oil in a pan.
When hot add the beef, onions and garlic. Stir-fry till beef becomes browned.
Next add the mushrooms and thyme then fry for a further 5 minutes.
Add the puree, stock cube and a little water to get the juices moving.
Take off heat and just stir until the pan has cooled a bit.
Add the soured cream, and stir continuously.
Season, and serve over rice or egg pasta.

Monday 15 August 2011

Simple Tomato Basil Pasta Sauce

This came to me as I got some delicious tomatoes and basil in the veg box so I decided to make a light meal that turned out to be extra delicious and very simple with few ingredients. You can make this and store in the fridge for a few days. It would also be a great appetizer on top of toasted bread, or you can add shellfish. Get crazy. This serves 2.

6 whole tomatoes (more or less depending on how big they are)
5 cloves of garlic (yes this has to be)
1 small onion
2 tbsp. olive oil
6-10 fresh basil leaves
Water for thinning out the sauce
Salt and lots of freshly ground pepper
Handful of parmesan cheese
~150g of fresh egg tagliatelle

To start:
Dice the tomatoes, onions, garlic.
Shred the basil.

To cook:
Heat the olive oil in the pan; when hot add the tomatoes, onion and garlic.
Turn down the heat to a simmer. Cook the tomatoes stirring constantly for 5-10 minutes.
Smash down the tomatoes as much as you can to release the juice.
If it cooks too fast and the juices run out you can add a little water to thin it out.
When it’s cooked down, add the basil, salt and pepper.

Serve over al dente pasta and sprinkle with parmesan cheese and more pepper.

Friday 12 August 2011

Crujiente Papas con Paprika

So this is the simplest recipe for a quick side dish, thanks Diana for checking my Spanish. These are "Crispy Potatoes with Paprika". The crispy potatoes you get from baking without having to fry them which is a plus! The paprika adds a really nice warm feel to them. Try!

New Potatoes (small potatoes, adjust quantity to your needs)
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. paprika
½ tsp. garlic powder
Freshly ground pepper

To cook:
Wash potatoes, and par boil them for 10 minutes.
Drain and put on a foil lined baking tray.
Smash the potatoes with the back of a spoon, not to mush, just to open them.
Drizzle the olive oil all over the potatoes.
Sprinkle all the seasonings on top.
Bake in a 200C (~400) oven for 16-20 minutes.

Wednesday 10 August 2011

Creme Fraiche Baked Salmon

Sometimes trying to find something different to cook for dinner with the same proteins can be difficult. I’ve really learned to just start making the most of what’s in my kitchen and ordering staple ingredients that can have multiple uses. It’s important to me that the food I put in my body is not only tasty but good for me. You can’t get much better than this, a delicious and elegant recipe for all occasions. Made the recipe for 2 but easily can add more fish.

2-4 salmon fillets or Scottish trout fillets
½- 1c reduced fat crème fraiche
2-3 garlic cloves
½ c freshly grated parmesan cheese
Handful of parsley

To Start:
Chop garlic, parsley and grate cheese (reserve a few pinches of cheese for the top of the fillets).
Mix all together with crème fraiche.

To cook:
Spread the mixture on top of the fillets and sprinkle the remaining Parmesan on each fillet.
Place on an oiled foil lined baking tray.
Bake at 180C or ~350F for 10-12 minutes.

And voila, you’re done. Serve with salad and potatoes. Keep an eye out for my crispy paprika potatoes that I made with this.

Saturday 6 August 2011

Easy Weeknight Thai Curry

I didn’t realize how easy this recipe was going to be to make but when I set out to make it, the cook time was unbelievably fast. I recommend this as a quick dinner, and it’s very easily adaptable to what you have around the house. I reduced the fat by using a low fat coconut milk, but a full fat coconut milk will yield a thicker sauce which might appeal to some. Serves up to 4. My photo my not have come out the best but it is very delicious!!

400g diced chicken breast
300g baby aubergine (baby eggplant, this is optional but reall is delicious)
1c slice fresh or frozen okra
2 tbsp. thai green curry paste
1 tbsp. lemon grass paste
1 can reduced fat coconut milk (full fat is fine)
1 small onion
1 chili
Handful Coriander
2 garlic cloves
½ lime
Basmati rice for serving

To start:
Dice onions, garlic and chili.
Slice aubergine in half or quarters.
Slice okra.

To Cook:
Heat a pan with oil.
When hot add chicken, aubergine, okra, onion, garlic, chili and stirfry until chicken is nicely brown.
Next add the coconut milk, coriander, and lime juice.
Cover with a lid and cook for about 15-20 minutes until chicken is cooked through.

Friday 5 August 2011

Grilled Marinated Prawns with Creamy Blue Cheese Sauce

I would normally never make something as rich as this for a dinner, but I had a few ingredients lying around, and a tiny bit of patience to cook with. I wanted something hearty and tasteful but also was within the confines of my restrictive diet. I have to tell you about this product before I continue with the recipe, hopefully you can find this alternative to cream in every grocery store, but it’s delicious and has nearly a quarter of the calories that regular cream has. It is absolutely delicious and acceptable in replacing in any dish with cream. If you’re not able to find this then a simple cream sauce will work equally well (if you want to know how to make one let me know).

Ingredients for Marinated Prawns:
300-400g fresh Prawns
Handful fresh parsley
1 small chili
3 tbsp oil
3 garlic cloves
Juice half a lemon

Ingredients for Pasta Sauce:
3 cloves garlic
3 tbsp flour
250ml Alpro Soya Cream
50-100g blue cheese (as much as you like, depending on how much you like it)
½-1 c milk (depending on how thick you like it)
¼ grated parmesan cheese
1tbsp. butter

To start Marinate the Prawns:
Chop, chili, garlic, parsley add to a zip lock bag.
Add oil and lemon juice and put in the fridge until you’re ready to cook.

For the Sauce: (Also good time to start up the pasta water)
Melt the butter in the pan and add the garlic, when the garlic becomes fragrant turn the hob down to the lowest setting.
Add the flour and make sure it’s incorporated completely and cook the paste for about 5-6minutes, being careful not to darken the ‘roux’.
Next add the cream and milk stirring with a wisk to remove lumps. Cook about 5-8 minutes on low heat, pepper only at this point.

Next Cook the Prawns:
Heat a grill pan on high heat.
Dump all the prawns in the pan and flash cook them until just done. Turn off heat and let rest.

To Finish:
Add the parmesan cheese into the sauce, if needs more milk to thin it, add some.
Add the drained pasta with a little water into the sauce, and then add the prawns. Voila!

Wednesday 3 August 2011

Lighten Up! Southern Jambalaya

This recipe is definitely not Texan, but I can say it’s been part of my life as I am from the South. If I cook it the traditional way I use American long grain rice and chorizo sausage (Spanish dried sausage), and it really got greasy, so I tried to change a few ingredients lower some of the fat, and add some more nutrition. I replaced the white rice with whole grain brown basmati rice and replaced the sausage with a smoked reduced fat pork sausage. This recipe makes a lot, enough to feed more than 4, but it also freezes well and makes great freezer meals.

400g (12-14oz) diced chicken breasts
200g prawns (shrimp)
1 200g link of sausage (preferably reduced fat)
1 large onion
3-4 ribs celery
1 bunch of spring onions
1 large red pepper (or whatever colour you want)
3-4 cloves garlic
2 c brown basmati rice (or whatever you have)
4 cups water (about 2 pints)
1 chicken stock cube
4 tbsp. Paprika divided
1 tsp. cayenne
1 tbsp. brown sugar
2 tbsp. olive oil ( you will need less if you use chorizo sausage)

To start:
Dice celery, onions, pepper and garlic set aside.
Dice into chunks the chicken, and slice the sausage set aside.
Make your stock.
Keep your spices out.

To Cook:
In a large stock pot, heat oil.
When hot add chicken, sausage and half the paprika and sauté about 8 minutes until the chicken is half cooked.
Remove from pan.
If you need more oil add another tbsp., and then add the vegetables, garlic and brown sugar. (if dry add ¼ c water. Sauté until vegetables begin to soften.
Add the rice and the stock, stir and bring to a boil, about 5 minutes.
Continue stirring, and add the remaining spices.
Make sure the pot is at a steady simmer and keep it there for 20 minutes.
Return to stir, and add prawns/shrimp, sliced spring onions last 5 minutes of cooking.
The Jambalaya will be done when the rice is soft. If it hasn’t gotten soft enough simply add more water.

Monday 1 August 2011

Oven Fish Sticks 'n' Zucchini Strips

Try this dish and you’ll never go back to boxed frozen fish sticks ever again. I had some salmon fillets and I wanted to try something new, as well as a new side dish, instead of the boring 'ol chips or fries. This recipe serves 2.


250g salmon fillets (I used 2 fillets, about 5-6oz each)
1 c bread crumbs
¼ c parmesan cheese
½ c flour
2 egg whites
2 medium zucchini
1-2 tomatoes
1 tbsp. olive oil
Garlic powder
Salt /pepper

Dipping Sauce ingredients:
2 tbsp. light mayo
2 tbsp. Maille Dijon mustard
Juice of half a lemon
Pinch Paprika

To start:
Make a breading station - three bowls
1- flour, salt, pepper, garlic powder
2- bread crumbs and parmesan cheese
3- egg whites slightly whipped

Pre-heat oven to 200C or 400F
Slice zucchini into thin half centimeter strips (the idea is to make them look like fries).
Quarter the tomatoes
Cover a baking sheet with foil.
Lay zucchini flat and spread apart so that each piece is exposed.
Sprinkle with tomatoes.
Lightly drizzle the olive oil over the zucchini and tomatoes, and salt and pepper.
Place into the oven.

To finish the fish: (Using one hand only for the breading part makes a huge difference)
Line another baking dish with foil and use spray oil to prevent sticking.
Cut the pieces of salmon into half inch pieces, about the length of your finger too.
Dip each piece in flour completely covering it.
Next dip into the egg whites.
Next dip into the bread crumb and make sure completely coated.
Place on the baking dish, and repeat until all salmon is done.
Place in the oven and the zucchini should be done at the same time the salmon is finished in 15-20 minutes.

Preparing the dip:
Mix all ingredients and serve individually in dipping bowls.

Note: Forgive my sloppy plating, I started eating before I realized I hadn’t snapped a photo!