Chicken Satay and Lettuce Wraps. Mid Week Meals

Back to work today, which was hard after a lovely 5 day break 😔

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Last night I took out 3 Aldi Chicken breasts from the freezer and defrosted overnight in the fridge. Satay chicken for dinner 😍 I would normally use boneless chicken thighs, but we have had BBQ a lot recently and the breast what what I had left.

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I cut these into large strips

IMG_4137marinated in chilli (as much as you like) 2 crushed cloves of garlic, soy sauce, a squirt of honey and a tablespoon of Veg oil.

IMG_4139for at least an hour, overnight would be good

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Thread these onto skewers ready to BBQ – you can oven bake or grill just as easily I am just taking advantage of Hubby’s BBQ addiction 🙃

For the Satay sauce I am using the Thermomix but this can be made in a pan, just takes more stirring.

 

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Into the bowl, I add a peeled, halved small onion and a peeled cloves of garlic and a s much Chilli as you fancy, whizz these on speed 4 for 5 seconds, then scrape down the bowl add a tablespoon of Veg oil and cook for 5 minutes, heat 100 speed stir (or finely chop the onion and garlic and sweat off in a pan)

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Add a heaped tablespoon of brown sugar, cook again at heat 100, speed Stir for 3 minutes. (Or add to pan and gently stir till sugar starts to caramelise) Add a teaspoon of dark soy sauce

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3/4 jar of peanut butter

IMG_4143and half a can of coconut milk, at this point it will look revolting and cook for 5 minutes heat 100 speed 2.

This sauce can be adjusted to taste, more soy, more sugar etc and can be cooked down to a thickness you like, or loosened up by adding more coconut milk.

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The Satay sauce keeps well in a jar in the fridge and reheats well. A good dipping sauce for crunchy Veg too 😉

IMG_4146We BBQ the chicken till cooked through then, for Aldi super 6 Romaine lettuce leave to wrap with the chicken and drizzled Satay sauce – I love this sauce – Yummmm….

 

IMG_4147Dinner is served 😍

The men had Wraps and salad.

 

 

 

Party Prep 🥂

Tomorrow we are hosting a Birthday BBQ for our Daughter and her friends for her 21st.

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Today is prep day and we have been out shopping, the BBQ meat is from Iceland, as I saved some vouchers especially for this purpose- just the normal Burgers, sausages plus spices Chicken Wings and Tiger Prawns as they are her favourite – we are not going OTT. I have some Field Mushroom and Halloumi for the Veggies 😋

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I also got some frozen Macaron- they are so pretty and taste amazing and at this price I couldn’t make them.

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For a healthy sweet kick, sliced watermelon

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To go with savoury I am making 2 basic salads, one a giant Cous Cous Salad – I boil this in plenty of water for 10 minutes or until tender, drain and pop back into the pan with a good glug of olive oil to keep it from sticking together – I am leaving this to cool, and will add finely sliced spring onion, cucumber, red pepper and a whole pack of chopped coriander and mint, Stir though with salt, pepper and lemon juice till ‘right’

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The other a homemade coleslaw

IMG_4089I make this in the Magimix with the slicing and grating blades – I could make it in the Thermomix, but it Chops the veg and I prefer it sliced – this will be finalised tomorrow.

Instead of a Birthday cake, I am making 21 cupcakes, the base recipe I use is from Nigella’s Domestic Goddess book. These will be made tomorrow.

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I make my own icing sugar in the Thermomix a kilo of icing sugar costs £1.70 on Sainsbury’s website, a kilo of Aldi granulated sugar is 59p

IMG_4067I add 250g of sugar and a teaspoon of cornflour to the Thermomix bowl and whizz at speed 10 for 10 seconds, stop, shake the bowl, and whizz again for another 10 seconds – I pop a sheet of kitchen roll between the measuring cup and the lid to prevent a billow of icing sugar

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Repeat this till the sugar is used – hey presto – a kilo of icing sugar 🤗

I am keeping these simple with pale pink rosette icing with shop bought ‘toppers’

When Grace was tiny, she couldn’t pronounce ‘Grace’ and as everyone called her Gracie, she shortened her own name to Ce-Ce (see-see) that was lengthened to Cupcake – like Families do 🙄  So her birthday cake had to be Cupcakes 😇

IMG_4080For drinks, I said I would provide a toast drink, we are making Strawberry Dachari’s for those who like them from Homemade frozen Stawberry purée , vodka, Lime juice, crushed ice, whizzed up in the Thermomix 😉 Aparently Cocktails are very ‘in’, I personally would prefer an Expresso Martini 😇

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We also have a huge bottle of Prosecco to toast her with – I might even share it with others 🤣 Loads of soft drinks too

I am sure she will have a fab night, they are going onto a night club afterwards – we will be on Cleanup duty then flaking out 🤣 Just one more 21st to go (youngest) then they can arrange their own parties 🤗

Cauliflower Tikka Masala – Meat Free Monday – World Meat Free Day

Monday again, very busy week ahead…. 😏

Anyway, dinner, fancied a curry, so thought I would try Cauliflower Tikka Masala, I found the recipe Here and by pure coincidence they have a lovely video of their trip to the Isle of Wight, so if you are interested in our little piece of the world, do have a look 😊 Its on the right hand side of their page

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Now onto food… the original recipe is for 6 people, so I have halved it and, of course fiddled to use what I have

I am making the sauce with the help of my Thermomix, but this could easily be made with a knife and some patience 😉

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Into the Thermomix bowl, I added a halved, peeled large onion, 2 cloves of peeled garlic, a good inch of peeled ginger, a fat red chilli (I used chilli flakes as didn’t have fresh) and whizzed on speed 8 for 5 seconds, scrape down the bowl and add the stalks and some leave from a bunch of coriander – whizz for another few seconds.

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Into a large pan, add a splash of Veg oil, gently heat, then add the aromatic mixture, stir through till starting to cook.

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Then, add a big blob of tomato purée, 1 teaspoon each of Garam Masala, turmeric and half a teaspoon each of ground coriander, paprika and cinnamon.

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At this point

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add a tin of coconut milk

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Stir together and let it simmer for a few minutes to let it reduce a little – season to taste – I added some lemon juice to brighten the flavours a bit.

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I took a whole Cauliflower and cut into medium-sized florets,

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popped into the sauce to cook through and thicken up 10 minutes or so should do it.

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Serve with whatever you fancy – Poppadums – rice – naan – a big old salad

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I am adding a spoon of Greek Yoghurt (which means it’s no long vegan) and a good dusting of chopped fresh coriander 😍

Kerala King Prawn Coconut Curry and Cauliflower Rice

The weather has turned yuk, the wind was so strong last night I thought our house was going to be doing a ‘Dorothy’ from Wizard of Oz 🤣

Anyway, I want something warming and I found This Recipe on BBC food, and thought it looked good.

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I start by defrosting Iceland King Prawn, they take a few hours , or overnight in the fridge.

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When defrosted, drain and mix in the juice of half a lemon, and leave to marinate whilst you make the sauce.

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I am using my trusty Thermomix, but as the link shows it’s easy to make without 🙃

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Into the Thermomix bowl, I add a halved, peeled medium onion, 3 fat, peeled cloves of garlic, a peeled inch of fresh ginger

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whizz these at speed 9 for a few seconds, scrape down the bowl

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then add the stalks and a few of the leaves of a bunch of coriander and whizz again for 2-3 seconds at speed 4, scrape down again.

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Heat a little veg oil in a heavy bottomed pan, then scrape the onion/garlic mix into the land and gently cook till softening.

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Add a half teaspoon of turmeric, 6 cardamom pods, a teaspoon on cinnamon and enough chilli powder to please your palate

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Stir though and continue to gently cook.

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Add a can of coconut milk, stir in and cook again for a few minutes, till slightly reduced

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season to taste.

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Add the prawns, and cook for a few minutes till the prawns are pink and plump and just cooked through.

Whilst your sauce is cooking, make the Cauliflower rice.

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Now, if you have never heard of this, you must have been in hiding – I wasn’t convinced when I first heard about it- but it works, with a decent curry sauce, you really can’t tell the difference to actual rice 😊

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This is mega easy to make, take about 1/4 of a small/medium cauliflower per person and either grate,

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or put into a food processor and whizz for a few seconds till the Cauliflower looks like – you guessed it – rice!!!! 🤗

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I then pop the Cauliflower rice into a microwaveable dish and cook for 2 minutes, Stir though, and that’s it – ready to serve

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A spoonful or 2 of the cauliflower rice, topped with the creamy Prawn curry and a sprinkle of fresh coriander to finish 😇

I love Prawn curries, and will choose that above almost anything else on a menu – perfect midweek treat.

 

 

 

Spaghetti, Meatballs, Homemade pasta sauce back to work bluerhhhh…

You know those days where you really wished you stayed in bed….  well this is one of them, so lazy dinner, Spaghetti and Meatballs for the Menfolk – I do make my own pasta sauce though 😉 I may just have an omelette with salad as I am too hot to be bothered with much.

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I am using a pack of 20 mini Meatballs which are in the freezer from Musclefoods, I will gently fry these off till browned and cooked through, ready to stir though the pasta and sauce.

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For the sauce – made in the Thermomix, I add a halved peeled onion, 2 peeeled cloves of garlic, a roughly chopped carrot and a roughly chopped stick of celery and whizz on speed 6 for 10 seconds, scrape down the bowl

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add salt and pepper then add a glug of olive oil and cook at heat 90 for 5 minutes, speed Stir.

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Add a tin of tomatoes, a squirt of tomato purée, and some fresh oregano or dried mixed herbs, a pinch of sugar cook for 20 minutes, varoma heat, speed 1 – I place the rice bowl,on top of the lid to prevent sauce from splashing as it cooks down.

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Hey presto – spaghetti sauce 😊 A fresh tasty version, not the sweet sticky neon red gloop you can buy in a jar 👍

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I set this to one side, rinse the bowl and top up with water to 2 ltr mark, add a pinch of salt and ‘cook’ at heat 100, reverse speed 1 till it gets to temperature – add a handful of spaghetti and watch it do its little dance for 10 minutes, till cooked through.

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Drain the spaghetti, add to the Meatballs, add sauce and mix together

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Dinner is served – not a jar in sight 😉

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And a quick shot of mine 😊 A cheddar cheese omelette 😜

Smoked Haddock, Poached Eggs over Mashed Potato with Hollandaise Sauce

I hope those of you in the UK are enjoying the long weekend- we spent yesterday doing, well, nothing special – we just relaxed Hubby pottered in the garden, I grumped over the amount of summer clothes that I couldn’t wear 😎

Today needs to be a little more productive – washing done and out on the line between the showers, house vacuumed and tidied and dinner planned.

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As its just the 2 of us, I have defrosted some Iceland Smoked Haddock and will have with Poached eggs over a little mashed potato with a hollandaise sauce. I got the idea from Great British Chefs, but have changed it a lot 😉

Before you throw your hands up in horror, I don’t do low fat, at my peak fittest (and slimmest) I was on a high protein way of eating, so that’s what I plan to do – I am mourning the loss of bread already ☹️

My beloved Thermomix comes into play, but you can obviously make Poached eggs and Hollandaise the traditional way.

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To start I cut and mashed 2 medium potatoes, mainly for Hubby – I am sure you don’t need me to tell you how to boil spuds 😉 I made these in my chefs pan, then popped into a plastic tub to reheat in the microwave for a couple of minutes before plating up.

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In the same pan add a tablespoon of butter and 200ml milk, lay the smoked haddock fillets in skin down and gently bring to a simmer for 10 minutes.

IMG_3817In one Thermomix jug add 4 egg yolks (save the white for meringue) 160g unsalted butter, the juice of half a lemon and a little salt and pepper – put the whisk attachment in and set aside for when the next stage is complete.

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I heat 2 Litres of water in the Thermomix to heat 70, speed 3 – when upto temperature pop eggs into the rice basket and cook at heat 70, speed 3 for 10 minutes. These can be cracked like you would raw eggs on top of whatever you are serving and you will have perfect Poached eggs – so easy…..

Remove when done and immediately put the egg mix on for 8 minutes, heat 90 speed 3 for the hollandaise. Here is a Link to the recipe I use

Heat the Mash, de-skin the smoked Haddock and pop onto a plate. Now, all hands on deck to plate up.

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A spoon or 2 of mash – Topped with the fish fillets

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The Poached eggs ‘cracked’ onto the fish

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Finished off with a spoon of Hollandaise.

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It isn’t the prettiest dish, but it is delicious – this is Hubby’s plate, mine was fish with egg and a little sauce 😉

Some like it HOT – Fiery Chilli Jam

We love a bit of homemade Sweet Chilli Sauce  , but I thought, when Aldi had their chilli’s in their Super6 I would spice things up a bit….

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This is made in the Thermomix, you can make in a pan, it will be REALLY HOT, so please be careful, burning sugar in your skin is no laughing matter

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I start with 2 red bell peppers, red chilli’s, 3 cloves of garlic and a 2 inch peeled piece of ginger – you are looking for 500g in total weight once chopped.

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This all goes into the Thermomix bowl and is chopped at speed 4 for 5-7 seconds make sure it’s all chopped evenly.

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Then add 180g sugar and 100ml white vinegar and 50ml water, mix to combine

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Cook for 35 minutes, varoma heat, reverse speed ‘stir’ I stopped the Thermomix about every 10 minutes, just to scrape down the bowl.

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Just before the time is up, soak 2 small jars in boiling water till sterilised – I do the jam Funnel at the same time – drain then set up ready for the jam.

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Pop,the lids on, I then turn them upside down (use oven gloves) to ensure a good seal for the lid. Leave to cool.

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This is very spicy, but delicious  – you have been warned 😇

I wrote this post just prior to Youngest having his Uni issues – so as I am busy today, I thought I’d post it