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      17.01.2012 22:24
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      Great tasting meal that's easy to cook

      I actually got this recipe off of my mother's friend who we often have round for dinner and vice versa. After a few visits she presented us with this meal about a year ago and I was blown away by the taste so I just had to ask for the recipe. The sauce is very creamy but actually the whole meal is quite healthy. All of the items should be obtainable through your local supermarket - even the pak choi, though it did take me a while to find it the first time. Now at university I still make this recipe on the odd occasion for a treat. It is lovely but probably suited to a less chaotic, home kitchen environment. ---MAKES FOUR PORTIONS--- ---INGREDIENTS--- 400g dried spaghetti 15g butter (or spread if you want to be really healthy) 1 onion (finely chopped) 2 cloves garlic (crushed) 300g frozen cooked prawns (thawed) 2 tomatoes (diced) 75g pak choi leaves (finely shredded) 100ml cream (double cream if you really want a treat) 100ml crème fraiche Salt and pepper to season ---METHOD--- - Cook the spaghetti according to the packets instructions. Meanwhile heat the butter in a frying pan, add the onion and garlic and fry until softened. - Add the prawns and fry for 2-3 minutes, stirring often. - Then add the tomatoes and shredded pak choi leaves, reserving a few strands to garnish. - Add the crème fraiche and cream, season to taste and bring to boil. - Drain the cooked pasta ad mix with the prawn sauce. - Serve at once, garnished with the reserved pak choi. Of course you can experiment with different creams and make it as thick or thin as you like. Trying different leaves is also fun and adds variety. So go on then, try it yourself and feel free to leave a comment if you have found something that goes particularly well with this.

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        15.01.2012 19:08
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        A tasty low fat meal

        As I have mentioned in some of my other reviews, I am currently on Weightwatchers. I find it great, as not only am I losing weight, I am also cooking more from scratch, which I really enjoy. Each food you eat has a certain number of Weightwatchers points, according to its nutritional value. You are allocated a specific number of points each day depending on your height and weight. The minimum you can have is 26. This is the number of points I am on each day, and I'm finding that thanks to several delicious low fat recipes, I am never hungry and am able to eat all day long while staying within 26 points! This is the best recipe I have found so far. It is ridiculously quick and easy to make, filling, very tasty, healthy and low in points - around 14 per serving depending on the brand of pasta you use. It is adapted from a recipe I originally saw on the Weightwatchers website. *Makes 2 portions* INGREDIENTS 1 pack of spinach and ricotta tortellini (such as Giovanni Rana) 200g butternut squash 1 courgette 2 tsp olive oil 100g spinach 40g feta cheese METHOD 1) Cut the squash and courgette into chunks and coat with the olive oil (I sometimes shake some balsamic vinegar over them also). 2) Roast the vegetables at 200C for around 20 minutes, turning every so often. 3) About 2 minutes before the vegetables are done, bring a lightly salted pot of water to the boil. 4) Cook the pasta according to pack instructions - generally for about a minute. 5) Just before draining the pasta, add the spinach and cook until it is wilted. 6) Drain the pasta and share between 2 bowls. 7) Top pasta with the roasted vegetables. 8) Finally, sprinkle the pasta and vegetables with the feta cheese. The amounts of squash, courgette and spinach I have given is of course just a rough guide; you can add as little or as much as you like. I was surprised how tasty this was. The roasted vegetables are tender and tasty, with the feta giving them a salty kick that stops them from tasting bland. I make this dish around once a week as I like it so much. You could also adapt it to use different vegetables - I might add aubergine or even sundried tomatoes next time for a change. Yum!

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          08.10.2011 14:03
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          An delicious low carb dinner!

          My husband is a Personal Trainer, so has to look good all the time. We only recently got married as well, and in the run up to the wedding I was determined to lose weight. We try to eat no carbohydrates during the week for dinner, so I have spent a long time trying to find exciting, carb free alternatives for our evening meals. Then I stumbled upon the recipe for cauliflower pizza. Yes you heard right. And if you are turning your nose up in disgust at the prospect, it is amazing!! My friends all laugh at me when I suggest it, but once I tell them about it, they are dying to try it too! It's not a pizza with cauliflower on top - the base itself is made out of cauliflower - a much healthier alternative! The downside to this, is it is quite fiddly, but gets easier the more you do it. What you need is; a cauliflower, an egg, mozzarella and then the usual pizza toppings - we use some kind of tomato paste like Sacla, and then add whatever we want - pepperoni, olives, mushroom, pineapple - whatever you fancy at the time! Firstly you need to 'rice' the cauliflower (this makes a great carb free alternative to rice too!). There are 2 ways to do this - I grate it in the food processor and then cook in the microwave, but you could cook it first and then grate when it's slightly cooled. You then mix the 'riced' cauliflower with an egg, and some chopped mozzarella. I have only found this recipe with cup measurements (1 cup cooked, riced cauliflower, 1 egg, 1 cup mozzarella) but I tend to make it up as I go and it seems to work OK - no complaints from hubby anyway! So you mix these ingredients together. Then you press into some kind of oven proof dish for cooking - like a flan dish. Then bake for about 15 mins at 230 degrees. When it is cooked, remove from oven, cover with your choice of toppings and grill until golden brown. It is nice and filling, without leaving you with the horrible bloated feeling that pizza gives you, and the fact that you can create your own toppings means it doesn't get boring! I would advise anyone to try this - it is a definite favourite in our home! 5 stars!!

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            05.08.2011 15:00
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            meatballs

            So iv been trying to lose a bit of weight since i had my son ryan about 17 months ago so iv been to weight watchers and i did slimming world and i still had no motivation i still kept eating rubbish that i shouldnt so i thought iv got to this its driving me mad having a muffin top!!!!!!!!! so i thought id start by cutting down then i thought of asking friends what they liked to eat and making it a heathier choice i love to cook anyway so i thought i start by cooking things that are better for you by cutting the saturated fat out!!!!!! and things that ppl like myself eat on occasions!!! Spaghetti and Meatballs!!!!!! Serves about 4-6 ppl cooking time is about 1 hr Calories 325 grams of fat is 9.5g if ur on weight watchers is 9 pro points!!!!!!! INGREDIENTS 400g lean minced beef (10% fat) 1 small onion, finely chopped 1 eating apple, peeled and finely chopped (or grated) 1 red pepper, cored, seeded and finely chopped The leaves from a few sprigs of oregano or 1 tsp of dried Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper 1 tbsp olive oil, for frying or use 4 sprays of fry light as its healthier for your sauce- 1 small onion, finely chopped 2 tsp olive oil 4 x 225g packs cherry tomatoes on the vine, halved 1 tsp red wine vinegar Pinch sugar How to make meatballs with spaghetti 1. Mix the minced beef, onion, apple, red pepper, oregano, salt and pepper by squishing it all together with your hands. Divide into 16 smallish balls. Chill in the fridge while you make the sauce. 2. To make the sauce heat the oil in a pan, then add the onion and cook slowly for 8-10 minutes or until the onion has softened and started to go golden. Tip in the tomatoes, add the red wine vinegar and sugar and simmer very gently, uncovered, for about 20 mins. Leave to cool then blitz the sauce in a blender. 3. Heat a tbsp of oil in an ovenproof non-stick frying pan, wipe out with kitchen paper, then add the meatballs and fry gently and slowly over a low heat for 10 mins, turning them over once with tongs or two spoons. (You may need to do this in batches if your pan is not very big.) Drain off any excess fat, pour in the sauce and finish off cooking for 15 mins. 4. Bring a big saucepan of salted water to the boil, then boil the pasta for 10 minutes or until al dente. Serve topped with the meatballs and sauce. i hope you enjoyed your meatballs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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            15.03.2010 22:49
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            Get your five a day

            If you only eat one vegetable then make it broccoli, full of nutrients this superfood has many health benefits. It boosts the immune system, system, supports cardiovascular heath, builds bones and is full of antioxidants. Parsley is another nutrient packed herb that should be used for more than decoration. benefits include blood building, parsley is very rich in iron, its also full of antioxidents, its high vitamin C content makes it a good immune booster. Ingredients (Serves 4) Broccoli x2 Packet parsely or white sauce or make your own white sauce. Chopped fresh parsley, about 2 good tablespoons. Potatoes, around 1kg depending on how much mash you like. Cheese, grated for topping, again depending on how much you like. Sliced tomatoes. Steam or boil the broccoli untill just tender and place in an ovenproof dish. Boil and mash potato. Make parsley sauce either by adding chopped fresh parsley to a packet mix or to white sauce made from scratch. Poor the sauce over the broccoli then put the mash potato on top, sprinkle with grated cheese and arrange sliced tomato on the top. bake for 30 minutes on 200 (fan oven) I like to serve this with a small salad, baby leaf spinich and tomato and some sweetcorn. This provides 4 of the 5 a day veg/fruit recommended. Add a fruit for pudding and you have your 5.

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              06.03.2010 19:09
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              -

              Like a lot of people these days, I'm always on the quest for delicious and filling low calorie meals. This past month I've been eating the recipe I'm going to share with you pretty much everyday. I think it's absolutely delicious, and the friends who have eaten it with me have agreed. My apologies if the simplicity of this insults your intelligence. Recipe 1 - 1 serving -------------- Ingredients: 100g skinless chicken breast a small handful of brown rice (this usually weighs around 35g once cooked) 100g of mixed vegetables (recently I've been using the frozen mixed vegetables from asda) 15ml of light soy sauce (Blue Dragon do a delicious one) Method: 1. Cook the chicken breast according to the cooking instructions on the packet (it's different for any kind of chicken you use) 2. 20 minutes before taking the chicken out of the oven, you want to put the rice in a pan of boiling water, boil for a couple of minutes and then leave it on a medium heat for the next 16/17 minutes. 3. 10 minutes before the chicken is ready, start cooking your vegetables. You can boil them, but I prefer to steam mine for 10 minutes. 4. Once everything is fully cooked, drain the vegetables and rice and put them into a bowl. Then slice up the chicken into cubes or strips and add it into the bowl. Then add your soy sauce and mix it through. This is a really delicious way of getting protein, grains and vegetables into your diet, and is very healthy (opt for fresh vegetables and chicken for the healthiest option). For the exact calorie count, you'll have to calculate it yourself due to different chicken/vegetables/rice. Thanks for reading!

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                04.03.2010 21:06
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                one hell of a salad

                175g/6oz Puy lentils 2 bay leaves 2 tbsp olive oil 10 rashers smoked streaky bacon, rind removed, finely chopped 3 shallots, finely chopped 2 carrots, finely chopped 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped 2 small celery sticks, finely chopped 2 large handfuls fresh chanterelle mushrooms, wiped clean sea salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper dash red wine vinegar extra virgin olive oil small handful fresh parsley, chopped For the duck 4 wild duck breasts salt knob of butter Method 1. Place the lentils and the bay leaves into a pan and cover with cold water. Bring them to the boil, then drain. Refill the pan with cold water to just above the level of the lentils. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes, or until tender. Add more water if the level falls below the lentils. 2. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a frying pan over a medium heat. Add the bacon and fry until just beginning to colour. 3. Add the shallots, carrots, garlic and celery and fry until the vegetables are soft and the shallots are golden-brown. 4. Add the chanterelles and cook for one minute. 5. Drain the cooked lentils, then return to the pan they were cooked in. Add the bacon and mushroom mixture and stir to combine. Season, to taste, with sea salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper. 6. Add a dash of red wine vinegar and cook over a low heat for five minutes. 7. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and stir in the chopped parsley. 8. For the duck, using a sharp knife, finely score the skin of duck breasts in parallel lines, then season well with salt. 9. Melt the butter in a frying pan over a medium heat. Add the duck breasts skin-side down and place a small plate on top so the breasts stay flat and cook evenly. Cook for 5-6 minutes, or until golden-brown, then turn the duck breasts over and cook for a further 1-2 minutes, or until cooked to your liking. Remove from the pan and leave to rest for five minutes. 10. To serve, spoon equal portions of the lentils onto four plates. Slice each duck breast and arrange over each portion of lentils.

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                  27.01.2010 16:44
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                  Please see recipe

                  My mom has always had high blood pressure since I can remember, her mom died of a stroke and her dad died of a heart attack (A sign there to look after your heart!). My moms been told (which I've been telling her for years) that she must lose weigh as now her cholesterol is very high and diabetes is a high risk. Now that the doctors has explained to her what could happen if she does book her act together, my mom has started eating healthy and cutting down on them horrid cigarettes. As one of the things I did at college was heath, fitness and nutrition now's a good time I really get to put it to good use. As most people are aware heart disease is one of the uk's biggest killers, I really don't want my mom to fall into that statistic! Will not go into all the facts now as to what makes a healthier heart and what you can do to help, as I shall also be doing a review on hearts at a later date. First things first my mom loves, breads, take always, cigarettes, coffee's and lots of cider (Merry Down to be precise) I really needed to adapt what she loves and make a healthy version for her to enjoy! Banana & Raisin Tea Bread (Makes 12 medium slices) Ingredients 3oz Melted unsaturated spread 5oz Wholemeal self-raising flour 3oz Wholemeal plain flour 1 tsp Baking powder 1 tsp Ground Cinnamon 3oz Brown sugar 3 Bananas (Mashed) 3 ½ oz Raisins 2 Smalls eggs lightly beaten 1 - Grease proof (using baking paper) a 2lb loaf tin or use a non-stick one. Melt the spread in a small saucepan. 2 - Sift the flours, baking powder and cinnamon into a large bowl and stir in sugar, bananas, melted spread, raisins and the eggs then beat the mixture until all is smooth looking. 3 - Pour the mixture into your loaf tin and bake in a preheated over at 180c for about 50 minutes until a skewer comes out clean. 4 - Stand the tin on a wire rack until cooled before turning it out. 5 - Serve and enjoy! Very happy to report my mom loves this and a whole 190 calories for the lot is fantastic! A handy fact If your diet contains more servings of fruits, vegetables, grains, nuts and beans, low fat and fat free dairy produce and more emphasis on foods that provide potassium, calcium and magnesium help you to prevent high blood pressure. Mango & Pineapple Pavlova (Makes 4 servings) Ingredients 3 Egg whites 6oz Caster Sugar 1 tsp Strong black coffee 8oz Natural fromage frais 4oz Mango (diced) 4oz Fresh pineapple (diced) 1 or 2 Passion fruits 1 - Whisk the egg whites in a bowl until they are stiff, fold in 1 tbsp of sugar and the gradually whisk in the remainder. The meringue must be glossy and form peaks when spoonfuls are dropped into the bowl. 2 - Fold in the coffee, and then spread the mixture over a large sheet of baking paper to form roughly a 8 inch circle. Cook in a preheated oven at 120c for about 50 minutes until the meringue is crisp. Remove from the over and cool. 3 - When the meringue is cold spread on top with the fromage frais and arrange the mango and pineapple on top. Drizzle the passion fruit seeds and juice all over the pavlova then serve. Nutritional Tip As a Pavlova is an easy, quick and a very much loved dessert, I'm happy to report that its surprisingly low in fat as its made from egg whites and using fromage frais, instead of high fat cream and adding a variety of fruit that you like. Orange and yellow fruits like mango's and pineapples are bursting with A, C and E antioxidant vitamins great for a healthy blood flow. Over combinations for a fruit pavlova could be: Strawberry and mango Raspberry and blueberries Cherries and nectarines Pineapple and papaya All of which are great for a happy heart. Mouth-watering taste too! Vegetarian cider & sage sausages (Serve's 4 people) Ingredients 6 Vegetarian sausages (quorn) 1 Onion (sliced) 2 Celery sticks (sliced) 1 Green pepper (sliced) 2 Carrots (sliced) 2 tbsp Plain flour ½ pint Medium-dry cider 200ml Vegetable stock (Homemade works best) 1 tsp dried sage Freshly ground black pepper 1 - Heat your casserole dish adding the sausage cut them into chunks, cooking for around 8 - 10 minutes stirring frequently until browned all over. Remove the sausage and set aside. 2 - Pour a little water into your casserole dish adding all the vegetables, simmering gently for about 5 minutes. Add the flour and cook for a further 1 - 2 minutes. 3 - Adding in the cider and stock bring to the boil remembering to stir occasionally too. Reduce the heat and return the sausages to the dish add the sage and season with black pepper to taste. 4 - Cover and cook for a 20 - 30 minutes stirring now and then adding a little more stock if needs be. Once cooked you could serve with garlic mash, roasted vegetables or wholemeal rice all work wells. This dish my mom likes best with garlic mash, and settles her craving a little for cider, the reason why I didn't use meat sausages as generally they contain a lot of fat's bad for your heart so in keeping with healthier foods I think quorn sausages are best. I do hope these recipes give you some idea on eating healthy without the bland taste of salads every day! Please do give them a try!

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                    17.01.2010 15:08
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                    Tasty use for a new superfood

                    In line with my New Year's Resolution to try new, healthier recipes, I've been reading up on the benefits of coconut oil. Along with its' numerous antiviral and antibacterial properties, it also seems to be useful in weight loss and management. Although it's a very concentrated source of saturated fats, populations with the highest consumption of coconut oil also have very low incidence of cardiovascular disease. One in the eye for the idea that all fats are evil, perhaps? Anyway, I found this recipe that features my new found super-food, in a capacity other its usual use as just a frying oil - somewhat unusually, it's a sweet dish, and a very nice one at that: Chocolate Coconut Bark Ingredients 4 tbs of virgin coconut oil, melted (coconut oils are solid at room temperature, but melt easily) 1 Heaped Tbs cocoa powder 2 tbsp honey, or agave nectar (adjust according to your tastes - I have quite a sweet tooth) 2 oz of chopped toasted nuts (almonds and walnuts work particularly well) Method 1) Mix the melted oil with the cocoa powder. 2) Add honey to taste 3) Stir in the chopped nuts 4) Pour the mixture onto a flat surfaced tray or plate. 5) Place the mixture in the fridge or freezer until set. 6) Cut into pieces and eat. I've also read of version's that replace the cocoa powder and nuts with peppermint oil. I guess the variations are pretty numerous - almond essence with chopped almonds; dessicated coconut instead of the nuts....whatever takes your fancy really, as long as the base of coconut oil and sweetener remains constant. Hope you enjoy it!

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                      04.11.2009 16:19
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                      A delicious and verstaile fat free sauce for topping pasta

                      ~~~~~~~~~~~ INTRODUCTION ~~~~~~~~~~~ I do like a bit of pasta, but one of the things I quickly learned when I started to watch my weight was the veritable minefield of horrors lurking in most ready made sauces - such as added fat, sugar and salt - which can turn an otherwise impressively healthy dish into a dietary catastrophe. After spending far too much time perusing the ingredients of every possible variety of pasta sauce - all in a vain attempt to find a quickie solution - I decided there was nothing for it but to make my own from scratch. What follows is the end product of almost ten months of testing and tweaking - a truly fat free tomato based pasta sauce that is readily freezable if made in quantity. This is my holy grail - a dieter's dream - because on the Slimming World plan that I follow, it is completely "free". I call it a Meaty Primavera Sauce because it's heavy on the veggies, but the extra lean mince (steak or lamb - either will do) adds both body and flavour. If you want a veggie option, just leave out the meat. This is a very versatile sauce and it's very easy to get creative with the ingredients. The only thing missing is olive oil - but you can add some of that too if you don't mind the extra calories. ~~~~~~~~~~ INGREDIENTS ~~~~~~~~~~ Makes enough for four generous servings: 1 whole red pepper - sliced 1 whole green pepper - sliced 1 medium red onion - sliced (or roughly chopped) 2 large cloves of garlic - crushed 1 small can of sweet corn (frozen will also do) 1 small red chilli, deseeded and finely sliced 1 carton of good quality passata (I use Napolina) 1 can of good quality chopped tomatoes (Napolina for me) 1 tablespoon of tomato puree 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar 250 to 300g sliced mushrooms 500g extra lean steak or lamb mince (optional) Fry Light Extra Virgin Olive Oil Salt & pepper to taste ~~~~~~~ COOKING ~~~~~~~ Coat a large, lidded, heavy based saucepan with Fry Light and put it on high heat on the hob. Chuck in the garlic, red onion and chilli, and fry for two or three minutes or until the onions start to brown off a little. Then add the meat (skip this if you want a veggie option), stirring vigorously until there is no pink meat evident. Then add in the chopped peppers, and keep stirring for another two or three minutes. Finally, add the mushrooms. Once the mushrooms shrink and give off water, wait until it evaporates and the bottom of the pan starts to sizzle before adding the chopped tomatoes, passata and tomato puree and sweetcorn in quick succession. Give it a good old stir, and then add salt and pepper to taste and finally, the balsamic vinegar. Put the lid on, and reduce the heat so that the sauce starts to simmer gently. Cook for an additional half an hour to forty five minutes on low heat, stirring occasionally to allow the sauce to thicken. Make sure you taste it and add salt and pepper if required. Once you are happy with the thickness, turn off the heat and let it cool for three or four minutes before adding it on top of whatever kind of pasts you fancy. Once the leftover has cooled, you can store it for up to three days in the fridge, or three months from frozen. ~~~~~~~ SUMMARY ~~~~~~~ I tend to have mine with shaped pasta such as fusilli or penne as it holds the sauce better., and I top it with parmesan shavings. For some reason, it tastes even better the day after it is made, and, as such, it's well worth making in advance. For variety, I sometimes use chopped bacon, trimmed of all visible fat, or capers and anchovies. In addition, if you want to go vegetarian, it works equally well with Quorn mince and a dash of Worcestershire sauce in place of the balsamic vinegar and lamb/steak mince. © Hishyeness 2009

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                        20.07.2009 01:17
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                        Great dish, will be making it again :)

                        I have been eating so unhealthy the last while, so I decided that today I was going to make a change in my diet and cook some thing a bit more healthier for myself. I was browsing through the healthy cook books at home and found a chip topped mediterranean pie that actually looked nice and has loads of great ingredients that I liked in it. The Ingredients that youll need for this dish are: (serves 2-3 people depending on appetite 1 pepper 200g lean mince 1 onion 2 cloves of garlic 1 400g of tinned tomatoes (or tomato pasta sauce) 2 tbsp of tomato sauce Mixed herbs Oven chips (low fat option) Cheese (preferably low fat mozzerella) (other vegetables can be used depending on tasted) Method 1.) Chop all your vegetables to prepare them to be added to cooked mince. 2.) Cook mince in a wok or pan until brown along with onion and garlic. 3.) Add the vegetables to the mince, except for the chopped tinned tomatoes and cook for around 4 minutes. 4.) Add tinned tomatoes to the mix along with the tomato sauce and cook for a further 3-4 minutes. 5.) Put mince mixture into a oven proff dish and cover the top with frozen oven chips and cheese. 6.) Cook in the oven for around 20-25 minutes until the chips are browned and cooked on the top of the pie. 7.) Serve and enjoy. I was really pleased with the way my pie turned out, as all low fat products were used it was a nice healthy meal with lots of vegetables and flavour in it, though if you use tinned tomatoes instead of a tomato pasta sauce you may find that the dish is a little bit watery, though that could just have been my opinion (or dodgey cooking lol). If you enjoy dishes like spagetti pomodoro or bolognaise you will probably love this, its a really tastey and different dish to make and isnt to bad for you either, what more could you ask for!

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                          14.07.2009 13:08
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                          A good mid-week dish

                          Chicken Rolls You will need: 1-2 chicken thighs per person 1 cocktail stick per thigh some cream cheese (philli, or triangles, or whatever you have) somthing to stuff it with, i.e asparagus spears What to do: Heat oven to 200C or equivilent (around 375F or gas 5-6) Take a chicken thigh and bung it in a food bag, or wrap in clingfilm. Take a rolling pin or similar and bash the chicken until flattened and thinned (this is great after a bad day - let all those grievances out!) Repeat with all the chicken thighs. Now, spread some cheese on the bashed thigh. as little or as much as you like, of whatever variety you like too. Garlic & Herb varietys add extra flavour. but what ever you have lying around the fridge will work Chuck on your filling (asparagus here but you can do it with almost any veg that cooks quick like peppers or mushroom (tho use a hard type or they'll go soggy)) and roll up as tight as you can. Stab with a cocktail stick where the join is to secure. Repeat with all bashed thighs. Chuck them in a oven proof dish, join side down. Cover with foil Bung them in the oven for 20 minutes. When the buzzer sounds, take out and remove the foil. Stick back in for another 5 minutes to brown and finish cooking. When you serve, please remind people you dont eat the stick (you'd be surprised). Goes great with fresh veg and new pots. As this is a recipe I've kind of thrown together, I can't give you any nutritional values, sorry. you could use breast if that's what you have to hand, but I find thigh is easier to bash and has a better flavour. Go experiment with fillings - the world is your oyster (tho I'm not sure oyster would work as a filling for Chicken Rolls.....)

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                            27.06.2009 11:14
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                            Healthy, cheap and easy tabouleh recipe

                            Growing up in my family, there was never bread in the middle of a dinner table but always a gigantic bowl of some sort of salad. Its formed a habit with me now (happily a healthy one for a change!) and I have salad with every single meal - literally everything. I get called weird when I have pie and salad, or chinese and salad which I can understand but I just like that freshness to balance everything out. One of my favourite types is the traditional middle eastern Tabouleh. Originating from Arab lands (Lebanon, Syria, Jordan) it is now popular the world over and can be found in certain supermarkets and delis. It is often included as part of a mezze in restaurants. I have eaten many different variations of this but decided to come up with my own twist because I am a massive fusspot and really hate the inclusion of certain ingredients in ready bought tubs of Tabouleh. Plus its so easy and cheap to make, why buy it? So here it is, my "Tabouleh with a Twist": Bulgar Wheat (about half a packet) Bunch of mint Bunch of parsley Juice of a lemon grated rind of a lemon Olive oil Salt Red, yellow or orange pepper - deseeded. *********************** Preheat the oven to highest heat, once hot place the pepper (cut into quarters) with some olive oil onto a baking tray and roast in oven until pepper is soft )but not burnt). Remove from oven and chop. Rinse the bulgar wheat in a sieve under the cold tap Boil a large saucepan of water, add salt and add the bulgar wheat Boil until the bulgar is soft but has a little texture to it (maybe about 10-15 mins) Drain thoroughly and place into a large bowl Add the chopped roasted pepper, finely chopped mint and parsley (I use quite a bit of these herbs). Stir through. In a separate bowl mix the juice of a small lemon, the grated rind, a good old slug of olive oil and a little salt. Mix and pour over the tabouleh and stir it through. ****************** Tabouleh traditionally includes onions which you can of course add I just dont like them. Also the roasted peppers are optional. I know I have been a bit lax with quantities of say olive oil, but just taste it and see if it needs a little more of something - that's pretty much how I do it! I actually prefer this dish served at room temperature rather than from the fridge - the flavours stand out more and the bulgar wheat tastes better to me. Finally if you wanted to vary this, you can use wild rice for a rice salad dish which is equally as tasty, its just bulgar wheat is very good for you as it contains more fibre, vitamins and has a lower G.I than say rice or couscous. Goes particularly well with fish, chargrilled or roasted meats, grilled Halloumi cheese or just on its own!

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                              25.06.2009 15:07
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                              Simple and healthy with lots of taste.

                              This Thai Noodle salad is a mix of a few recipes which I have tried in the past, I think I've finally cracked it, this is a great little dish for a light lunch or served with grilled chicken, prawns or beef for a more substantial meal. I have listed this under Healthy Recipes as it is mainly raw salad ingredients, it does include a commercial sweet chilli sauce which does have sugar in it (I use a Waitrose one which has 67 calories and 15.8g sugar per 30ml serving). Still - life's a bit more exciting with some spice!! As the salad has chilli/chilli sauce it can be quite spicy, but the amount of chilli can be reduced, if needed. It only takes 10 minutes of chopping and mixing to put together. Quantity here serves two. It does seem to be best if dressed immediately prior to eating otherwise some of the herbs tend to wilt. I recently served it with skewered chilli prawns at a barbeque and had lots of compliments about it. Hope you enjoy it too. **Ingredients For the salad: 1 Carrot and half a Cucumber sliced into long thin slices. 4 Tomatoes - sliced or quartered. Watercress - one bag or large bunch. Coriander leaves - one handful. Mint leaves - one handful. Rice noodles - enough for 2 people. For the dressing Sweet chilli sauce - 2 tblspns (buy at most supermarkets) Juice of one lime. Thinly sliced red chilli - I use half of a small one but would suggest you start with a small amount and add to taste. Sugar - a pinch (just normal granulated will do). Thai fish sauce (Nam Pla) - 2 tblspns. **Method Mix all the dressing ingredients together and put to one side. Wash and chop the salad ingredients, place these in the serving bowls with the cooked, and slightly cooled, noodles. If you are adding meat/prawns, grill these now. Dress the salad just before serving. Top with sliced meat or skewered prawns, if using.

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                                06.06.2009 13:04
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                                Healthy filling meal

                                Healthy Wholesome, filling and cheap! This is a lovely filling and warming very easy to make casserole that we have on a regular basis. I use various beans but usually add a tin of kidney beans as well. The sugar may seem a strange addition but it seems to bring out the flavour of the tomatoes. If you want to serve it as a vegetarian dish just leave out the sausages! Another good thing about this dish is that the beans count towards your 5-a-day fruit and veg! Serves 4, preparation time 5 minutes, cooking time 15 minutes. 8 sausages 1 Large onion chopped 2 cloves of garlic crushed 1 chilli (more if you dare) or chilli sauce (optional) 3 x420g cans of mixed beans 2 x 420g cans of chopped tomatoes large pinch of mixed herbs tbsp sugar black pepper Olive oil for frying (A note about Salt - we don't use salt in our house but if you are used to taking salt you may wish to add some, but try without first as it is better for you without added salt!) Cook the sausages under the grill and set aside. In a large pan lightly fry the onion and garlic and fresh chilli (if using) in a little olive oil. Drain and wash the beans and then add to the onion and garlic along with the chopped tomatoes, season with the herbs, and black pepper add the sugar and chilli sauce (if using) then bring to the boil and gently simmer for 10 minutes. Add the sausages and heat through. Serve with crusty warm bread and enjoy!

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