Sausage, Garlic and Red Wine Casserole Low Carb Mid Week Meal

Sausage and Red Wine Italian Style Casserole – ‘bung it all in ‘ easy midweek Supper which uses all those leftover Veg sat in the bottom of the fridge 😊

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I have lots of bits and bobs to use up in the fridge, and fancy something hearty, so I pulled some Sausages from the freezer last night and popped them in the fridge to defrost ready for today.

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In a heavy based pan or Casserole dish add a good splash of olive oil, add the sausages and cook till browned on the outside- remove and set aside.

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To the still hot pan, add sliced celery, 3 cloves of crushed garlic

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2 peeled finely sliced red onions, I added a small diced carrot, 2 bay leaves and some Rosemary, stir well till softening.

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I go the sliced bell peppers.

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Add the browned Sausages, I have sliced each into 3, leave while if you wish.

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a good glass of red wine and a pack of passata, these are strained tomatoes, a thick tomatoey paste 😊

Stir though well and place in a hot (180) oven for an hour.

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Remove, add some Spinach and some chopped flat leaf parsley stir through, taste and season – if it’s a bit ‘wet’ – remove the lid and return to the oven for another 15-20 minutes till thick and unctuous.

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Mine is by itself  – well apart from a glass of red 😉

I made some mash for the menfolk 🤗

Greek Garlic Chicken Salad

Greek Garlic Chicken Salad – Delicious Garlic and Lemon infused Chicken Breast with a crisp, crunchy dressed Salad- Yum…

IMG_4596Well there was a storm last nigh, just not here… we had a few spots of rain with some rumbles of thunder far away in the distant mainland 🙄 I will start doing a rain dance later – which would certainly sound like thunder 🤣🤣

Back to the food, I had planned a BBQ today, but due to the lovely  shade of grey in the sky, I will cook some Chicken Breasts on the stove top.

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I marinate these juicy Chicken Fillets in a mixture of the juice of a lemon, about a third to double olive oil (depending on size of the lemon), a table spoon of red wine vinegar, 2 fat crushed cloves of garlic, large teaspoon of dried oregano and a pinch of salt and pepper

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I put my dressings into a clean old jar – just shake to combine any leftovers can sit in the fridge for upto a week 🙃

IMG_4599Reserve about a third of the mix to use as a marinade, the rest, pour over the Chicken Breast – I have lightly scored each Breast so they absorb as much of the flavour as possible, it also reduces the cooking time.  Leave to marinate for at least an hour, overnight would be great 👍. *Please don’t use any of the marinade you put on the chicken on the salad – you will be ill and no one wants that x

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Whilst you are waiting, make some delicious Tzatziki – Thick Greek Yoghurt with finely diced, deseeded cucumber, a squirt of lemon juice, a tiny splash of olive oil, a clove of crushed garlic, a sprinkle of dried oregano, shake to mix together, season to taste and pop in the fridge till ready.

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The Greek salad is a mix of thickly sliced cucumbers, sliced lengthwise first, then on to ‘half moons’ (I remove the seeds) a very finely sliced small red onion, tomatoes chopped into bite sized pieces.

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I add cubes of Feta Cheese and a sprinkling of lovely fat olives 😍 Drizzles with the reshaken reserved dressing.

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The Chicken can be pan fried in a medium hot pan for 15-20 minutes – I pop them into a hot oven for 5 minutes or so to finish off, the liquid should run clear.

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Leave to rest for a few minutes before serving up.

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I wish I had the Greek Taverna to eat it in 😉

Hubby and Youngest have the addition of some lightly buttered Jersey potatoes

 

Butter Chicken Fakeaway Curry quick, easy, delicious Midweek Meal

Butter Chicken – a simple but delicious and fast Curry for a midweek Fakeaway.

Waiting for the storm to arrive, it’s too sticky here to cook much and we need a good storm to clear the air.

IMG_4582I am using the chicken Slow Cooked at the weekend, a tasty way to use the Rubber Chicken 😍

I am using my Thermomix, and This specific recipe, with a few changes to suit what I have in, this can easily be made in a pan, just a bit more fiddling around.

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I start with adding 4 fat cloves of peeled garlic to the bowl, a deseeded red chilli (or more if you like it hot) and a peeled Thumb sized piece of ginger (roughly chopped) chop at speed 7 for a few seconds.

Scrape down the bowl and add a peeled, quartered medium onion (I used 2 small) and chop again at speed 5 for a couple of seconds – scrape down again *This can all be done by had or in another type of food processor

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Add 100g butter, 3 teaspoons of Garam Masala, 2 each of ground paprika, coriander, cumin, turmeric, 1 of ground cardamom and a half teaspoon of ground cinnamon.

Cook for 5 minutes, heat 100 speed stir – or gently fry in a pan till softened – this smells amazing at this point 🤤

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Use a silicon spatula to loosen the mix and then add a tin of coconut milk, 200g of tomato purée, the juice of half a lemon and a good pinch of sea salt

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if you are using raw chicken, chop approx a kilo into bite sized pieces and add now – cook for 25 mins at varoma heat at reverse speed Stir or mix together and stir over a medium heat for 35 minutes.

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As I am using cooked chicken, I chop and add that after 15 minutes and continue for a further 10 minutes till fully heated through.

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I add a good drizzle of double cream, do it by taste and another little stir to combine – season to taste.

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I am serving mine by itself with a little Greek youghurt and some chopped fresh coriander.

Hubby will have his with rice too 😊

Really quick and blooming gorgeous

 

 

 

Papoutsakia – Meat Free Monday -Baked Aubergine

Vegetarian Papoutsakia is simply Baked Aubergine stuffed with onion, pepppers, Courgettes in a delicious cinnamon spiced tomato sauce, topped with cheese,  Papoutsakia Roughly translates as ‘Little Shoes’ you can see why 🤣 When foods this good who needs meat.

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I start by peeling and dicing a medium onion, 2 fat garlic cloves, and gently frying in a little olive oil, salt and pepper,

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as they start to soften, add a chopped medium bell pepper, I am using yellow as that’s what I have it, but whatever you have got. I finely dice a medium Courgette and add to the pot.

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When these have cooked down a little, add a good squirt of tomato purée, a teaspoon of ground cinnamon, the same of cumin and dried oregano, stir through.

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Then add a tin of chopped tomatoes, a splash of balsamic vinegar, stir through, cook till thick and unctuous.

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Whilst the sauce is reducing, cut an Aubergine in half lengthways, score the white flesh and drizzle with olive oil, season well.

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Pop these into an ovenproof tray and into a hot oven (200) for 20-30 minutes till soft but still holding their shape.

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Add the tomato mix to the sunken flesh of the Aubergine (use a spoon to press down if not sunken) top with torn Mozzarella and Parmesan, a drizzle of olive oil a sprinkle of Oregano and back into the oven for another 10 minutes till soft, golden and bubbling.

IMG_4581Serve with a side salad and a large glass of chilled wine 😉

 

 

Slow Cooked Whole Chicken Meal Planning

The weather is cooler, and Hubby and Youngest are missing a ‘proper’ dinner i.e Meat and 2 veg 🙄 So they will have a Local Meat Pie, Mash, peas and gravy.

For me, I am cooking Chicken.

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I bought a plump whole chicken from Aldi this week, and rather than make a traditional roased bird, I am going to slow cook it. This will make several dinners for us, a curry for Tuesday, a low carb Chicken and Cauliflower gratin, Chicken Salad and soup for me for a week of work lunches, I could stretch it further, but the menfolk are big eaters and 12 meals out of one bird isn’t too bad 😇

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Previous Rubber Chicken Meals, Roast, Pie, Sweet and Sour Chicken and Soup from 1 bird

I have done ‘Rubber Chicken’ before Here is a link to several posts, very worth it if you are saving a few pennies, and don’t want to compromise on flavours.

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I pop the whole chicken into the slow cooker, with just a little salt and pepper on it, This will cook for about 6 hours and produce moist juicy chicken that literally falls off the bone.

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The bones will be put back into the pot with a little more water (the chicken juices are left in there) then add some carrot, celery, garlic and onion, along with some thyme and Rosemary

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this is cooked overnight to make a really good stock.

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This will be chicken soup for my work lunches 😊

I am having a chicken salad for dinner to use up some of Veg in the fridge.

 

Steak Night with Bacon Wrapped Asparagus – Saturday Supper

Just us two tonight, so I am treating Hubby to his favourite Steak 😉 I will keep it brief as there is only so much I can say about steak and salad 🤣🤣

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I have a pair of Sirloin steak, which will be seared with plenty of butter in a amazing hot pan.

I have got some Asparagus too, it’s one of my favourite veg, and sadly our home grown is over, so I am using Aldi Asparagus, which will be wrapped in Smoked streaky bacon and oven roasted till crispy 😍

Hubby will have a jacket potato with his, I will have Spinach stir fried with butter and nutmeg.

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Homemade Lemon Curd Icecream with Homemade Meringue and Homegrown Raspberries for Hubby’s dessert,

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with strawberries and cream for me.

 

Getting Pickled – Butter Pickles or Pickled Courgettes

Anyone that grows their own veg will understand that feeling when your Courgette plants are growing faster than you can eat them.

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Today, I am making some pickled courgettes to have with Cheese, or on a burger etc. These are known as Butter Pickles in America as they are so good you can have them with just bread and butter 🤗

Its such an easy recipe, very frugal and they taste delicious.

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We have 2 Courgette plants in the garden, and we pick at least one a day from each plant, but after some rain they can shoot out many more 🤗

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I start by finely slicing the courgettes, and a small onion, these go into a large bowl to be brined, cover the veg with cold water and add 2 tablespoons of salt. Leave for at least an hour, this forces out moisture from the courgettes and makes it crunchy when pickled.

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In a pan, add 500ml of vinegar, I am using Aldi White vinegar at 39p a bottle, but you can you cider vinegar, which is more expensive, but is a lovely mellow flavour.

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To the vinegar, add 100g sugar, a teaspoon of mustard powder, a quarter teaspoon each of mustard seeds, chilli flakes, turmeric and celery seeds

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stir together bring to a simmer for a couple of minutes ensuring the sugar has dissolved – leave to cool till warm not hot.

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Drain and rinse the courgettes and dry as much as you can, I used a clean tea towel.

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Pop into sterilised jars, and top up with the vinegar. Kilner Jars are lovely but expensive, I live the Aldi Jam Jars which look like Bonne Mamon ones, but half the price.

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Leave for a few days, they taste best from the fridge – unopened they will last a couple of months, which is great to stretch seasonal Veg out 👍

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I have also ‘flat’ frozen some of our herbs, coriander

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And Basil

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Simple, snip, wash, dry and pop into a freezer bag as flat as possible and freeze overnight, when frozen shake down in the bag and seal – easy and herbs on tap 😇