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  • Recipes

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    Veggie burgers

    Delicious, high fibre bean burgers – the trick to these is baking the beans first to dry them out – result is veggie burgers that don’t fall apart! Each burger is around 160kcal so eat 2-3 with just a big salad if you’re trying to lose weight.

    (serves 4-6, makes 12 burgers)

    2x 400g tinned beans (black / red kidney / pinto / cannellini or a mix of beans), well drained

    OR 480g drained weight or home-cooked beans

    1 tbsp olive oil

    1 red pepper

    1 small onion

    3 garlic cloves

    1½ teaspoons ground cumin

    1 teaspoon chilli powder

    1 teaspoon paprika

    200g oat bran (or breadcrumbs if you’re stuck)

    120g Feta cheese

    1 large egg

    1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

    1 tbsp ketchup, bbq or hoisin sauce

    • Preheat oven to 160°C. Spread beans evenly onto a baking sheet lined with baking parchment and bake for 15 minutes until slightly dried out. Keep the parchment on the tray for later and increase oven temperature (or change to grill) to 190°C after beans are done.
    • While beans are in the oven, peel and roughly chop onion, wash and roughly chop pepper, peel garlic. Place in food processor and finely chop.
    • Heat ½tbsp oil over medium heat, add chopped pepper, onion & garlic mixture and cook about 5-6 minutes until soft.
    • Place egg in the food processor bowl with the cumin, chilli powder, paprika, oat bran, Worcestershire sauce, ketchup (or other sauce). Pulse a few times, then add the Feta and beans. Pulse the mixture again, leaving some little chunks of beans and cheese. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
    • Dampen hands slightly and form into 12 burgers, handling as little as possible. Brush the paper lining your baking tray with a little oil (or use spray oil) and place the burgers
    • Bake in the oven (now at 190°C) for 20 minutes (turning after 10 min) or grill for 7-8 mins each side.
    • These can be frozen after cooking.

    Chicken broth

    Bone broths are a fantastic source of minerals and amino acids, one of very few foods containing collagen – essential for healthy skin, hair, nails and bones. It has anti-inflammatory amino properties, a healthy balance of minerals and electrolytes and is gentle and healing for the stomach and gut – great for anyone with digestive disorders. Use broth as it is for a light soup drink or make your favourite soup or casserole recipe using it as stock. The chicken from this recipe will be delicious and tender; use it to make a chicken salad, or cut up and added to the broth with chopped vegetables to make a chicken soup

    1 chicken, approx. 1.3Kg (3lb)

    1 Leek or onion, roughly chopped (no need to peel the onion and the tough, outer leaves of the leek can be used as long as they are scrubbed clean)

    1-2 sticks celery, roughly chopped

    1-2 carrots, roughly chopped (no need to peel, or top & tail, just wash well)

    Other vegetable trimmings if available, like parsley or mushroom stalks

    12 peppercorns

    1tsp sea salt

    2 bay leaves

    1. Put the vegetables in a large pot, place the chicken on top and cover with cold water. Add peppercorns, bay leaves and salt.
    2. Cover and bring to the boil, then simmer for about an hour and a half
    3. Turn off the heat and leave the chicken in the stock overnight or for several hours until it cools down.
    4. Place in the fridge and when well chilled, skim fat from top of the liquid.
    5. Remove the chicken, strain the stock. Bring to the boil and simmer to reduce the stock down to make a tasty broth.

    Roast vegetable & chicken gratin

    (serves 2-3)

    This is a healthy, low carb alternative to lasagne; the vegetables are roasted first, then layered with cooked chicken and tomato sauce, topped with a little grated cheese and baked in the oven. It’s a great way to make your chicken go further and eat a healthier balance of less meat and more veg! Serve with steamed broccoli or a big green salad.

    2 tbsp. olive oil

    1 small-medium onion, peeled and chopped

    1-2 cloves garlic, finely chopped or pushed through a garlic press

    1tsp dried oregano

    1 tin plum tomatoes, chopped

    1 large aubergine, sliced lengthwise into ½cm slices

    1 large or 2 small courgettes, sliced lengthwise into ½cm slices

    6-8 mushrooms, washed and sliced thickly

    1 pepper (red, green or yellow), cut into large dice or slices

    1 large cooked chicken breast / leg meat / bought cooked chicken slices, in bite-sized chunks

    30g low fat cheddar or Edam cheese, grated

     

    • Place aubergine slices on a tray or a clean surface and sprinkle liberally with salt on both sides. Leave for half an hour and then rinse off and pat dry using kitchen paper or clean tea towel.
    • Heat oven to 200 degrees C. Put 1 tbsp olive oil into roasting tin, heat for 5 minutes and spread over tin using a pastry brush. When hot, add aubergine slices and roast for 15-20 minutes, turning halfway, until some parts of the slices start to turn golden brown. Add slices of courgettes, mushrooms and peppers to the roasting tin, drizzle with a little of the oil, season with pepper and a little sea salt and continue to roast for 15-20 minutes.
    • Fry onion in ½tbsp olive oil over gentle heat for about 3 minutes. Add garlic and oregano, cook for a further minute. Add tin of tomatoes, bring to the boil and simmer for 5-10 minutes.
    • Place layers of roast vegetables and chicken pieces in a lasagne dish with blobs of tomato sauce, finish with grated cheese and bake for 30 minutes or until cheese is golden brown.

    Vegetable, beef & bean curry

      (serves 6)

    The idea of this recipe is to show how you can boost your vegetable intake and reduce meat portions in a family dish. Beans are great for adding protein and fibre… you can modify the spices (and omit the coconut milk) to make it like a Bolognese or a chilli, so versatile and so healthy – the vegetables are almost invisible so it’s great for fussy eaters!

     

    Ingredients:

    2 tbsp oil (eg coconut, rapeseed or olive)

    450g Minced round steak (or turkey / pork steak)

    2 medium onions

    2 large carrots

    1 large courgette

    3 Peppers (any colour)

    2 tins cannellini beans

    ½ tin (200ml) coconut milk (freeze the remainder)

    3 tsp mild curry powder (or your own combination of herbs /spices)

    2 tbsp tomato puree

    1 tbsp Soy sauce

    ½ beef stock cube in 100ml hot water

    Freshly ground sea salt & black pepper to taste

    1. Start by preparing all the vegetables. Wash all the veg in cold water. Peel and quarter onions and peppers and chop finely in a food processor (or by hand if you prefer!). Set aside in a bowl.
    2. Peel carrots and use food processor again, this time with the grating disc to grate carrots and courgettes.
    3. Heat 1tbsp oil in a large pan or wok, add minced beef and stir-fry until browned all over. Remove from the pan and set aside.
    4. Heat the other 1tbsp oil and add onion and pepper mixture, fry for a couple of minutes then add the grated carrots and courgettes. Stir well over a medium heat for a couple more minutes.
    5. Add curry powder and stir in well, then add tomato puree, coconut milk, stock and soy sauce.
    6. Stir in the mince and drained cannellini beans. Simmer for 15-20 minutes. Taste and season to your liking.
    7. Garnish with a sprig of fresh herbs and a little sprinkle of grated cheese if you wish.

    Printable version can be downloaded here: Vegetable, bean & beef curry

    Celeriac, ginger & apple soup

    Serves 6

    1 tbsp olive oil

    2-3 cm (about a thumb-sized) piece fresh ginger

    1 medium celeriac

    1 leek or small onion

    1 medium eating apple

    1 sprig fresh thyme (or ¼ tsp dried) optional

    3 vegetable stock cubes or 4 tsp Marigold bouillon

    approx. 1500ml boiling water from kettle

    Freshly ground black pepper to taste

    1. Prepare ginger by peeling and cutting into small dice or strips
    2. Wash and chop leek (or onion)
    3. Wash, peel and cut celeriac into pieces approximately 2cm cubed
    4. Core and slice the apple, no need to peel
    5. Heat oil in a large, heavy based pot
    6. Add ginger and stir for a few moments until aromatic
    7. Add celeriac and leek, stir briefly then add stock and sprig of thyme, cover and simmer 15 minutes until vegetables are soft.
    8. If using fresh thyme, remove the sprig now.
    9. Add chopped apple, simmer about 5 minutes more and then blend the soup, adding seasoning to taste. download printable recipe here: Celeriac, ginger and apple soup

    Superfood Salad

    Choose some green leafy veg: as much as you like and any combination of: baby spinach, oak leaf lettuce, radicchio, rocket, kale, rocket, beet leaves etc

    ¼-½ ripe avocado

    A little lemon juice or lime juice (optional)

    ¼ Mango

    1 small cooked beetroot

    1 large ripe tomato

    ½ Pepper (any colour)

    1 tbsp mixed seeds (eg pumpkin, sunflower, chia, poppy, hemp…)

    For Balsamic Dressing (10 portions, keeps well in fridge):

    50ml Balsamic vinegar

    100ml olive oil

    1tsp Dijon mustard, pinch sea salt and ground black pepper

    Place ingredients in a jug, whisk well together and pour into a bottle or jar with a lid to store.

    1. Wash leaves in a basin of cold water, place in salad spinner, spin and when leaves are well drained, put them into your salad bowl
    2. Add ¼ – ½ avocado, depending on size, peeled and cut in chunks and add to the bowl. Squeeze a little lemon or lime juice over it to complement the flavour and prevent it turning brown if you like.
    3. Wash and cut into chunks and add to the bowl
    4. Peel mango, cut into chunks and add to the bowl
    5. Cut pomegranate horizontally in half (leaving the stalk end intact), hold skin side up over your salad and bash the pomegranate skin with a heavy spoon or rolling pin. The seeds will tumble out into your salad with no mess and none of the woody white pith
    6. Cut washed pepper and cooked beetroot into bite-sized chunks and add to the bowl
    7. Sprinkle over seeds and a little dressing. Toss all together and enjoy!

    You can download printable version of recipe here: Superfood salad

    Colcannon

    A traditional Irish dish, Colcannon is a great way to encourage people who ‘don’t like greens’ to eat these intensely nutritious dark green leafy veg in a delicious combination of creamy mashed potato with the fresh flavour of scallions

    1kg potatoes

    250g kale or cabbage

    4 Scallions

    20g butter

    75ml milk

    2 tbsp chopped parsley (optional)

    2 tbsp chopped chives (optional)

    Freshly ground black pepper to taste

    1. Wash and peel potatoes and put on to boil (if you have a steamer, use a pot that the steamer will fit over) in cold, salted water. Simmer, covered, until cooked
    2. Strip leaves from kale stalks, wash and roughly chop or tear leaves and put on to steam over potatoes for about 8 minutes. If you don’t have a steamer, put into boiling water and cook about 8 minutes until just tender, then drain well. When cool, squeeze out excess water and chop kale if you prefer it in smaller pieces.
    3. Chop scallions finely
    4. Drain potatoes when cooked, put back into pot and allow to dry a bit more then mash well, add butter, milk, chopped scallion, seasoning (taste to check) and fresh herbs if using.

    Download printable version of recipe here Colcannon

    Banana Nut Muffins

    Dry ingredients:

    100g wholemeal flour

    50g plain flour

    75g porridge oats

    50g mixed seeds (eg pumpkin, sesame, linseed (flaxseed), sunflower, chia)

    1 teaspoon baking powder

    1 teaspoon baking soda

    ½ teaspoon salt

    1tsp cinnamon

    4 very ripe bananas (about 550g before peeling)

    125ml buttermilk (or mix milk with 1tbsp lemon juice, or use half milk half natural yoghurt)

    1 large egg

    1 teaspoon vanilla extract

    3 heaped tablespoons crunchy peanut butter (about 200g) or just use nuts – any kind

    1. Pre-heat fan oven to 180o Line 12 medium muffin cups with paper baking cups.
    2. Combine all the dry ingredients in a bowl.
    3. Roughly chop bananas and put into food processor. Add buttermilk, egg and vanilla and process until smooth.
    4. Add peanut butter and process briefly until just mixed.
    5. Remove the lid and add the dry ingredients all at once, then ‘pulse’ by allowing the food processor to work just for a second at a time until ingredients come together, do not overmix or beat.
    6. Use a spoon or spatula to check it is mixed through.
    7. Fill muffin cups to the top. Bake for 25 minutes or until golden brown and firm on top.
    8. Remove from the tin and cool on a wire rack.

    Chocolate beetroot cake / brownies

    A gorgeously moist chocolate cake, no-one would guess it’s sugar free… Xylitol is a natural sugar substitute, you can use it exactly as you would normal sugar but it’s very low calorie, harmless to teeth and suitable for diabetics… best of all it tastes just like sugar but without the sugar rush! For an extra treat try this cake with a dollop of crème fraiche or softly whipped cream.  A word of warning – xylitol is very toxic to dogs so none of this for your dog!!

     

    200g plain flour

    50g Bourneville cocoa powder

    1½tsp baking powder

    Pinch of salt

    300g beetroot (you can cook it yourself or buy ready-cooked in vacuum packs)

    3 large eggs

    200g Xylitol sugar substitute (or sugar)

    1 tsp vanilla extract

    200ml rapeseed oil

    • If you need to cook your beetroot, place in cold water, cover and bring to the boil, simmer for about 30-40 minutes until tender. Cool and then remove peel.
    • Preheat oven to 160oC (fan). Grease a 21cm (8”) round cake tin OR a brownie tin (approx. 9×13”)
    • Sieve together flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt in a large bowl
    • Cut beetroot into quarters, place in food processor and process briefly, scrape down sides. Add eggs one at a time, with motor on again then add xylitol, oil and vanilla and process again.
    • Add the mixture to the dry ingredients, folding in gently. Pour the mixture into the baking tin and bake 35-50 minutes (in a round cake tin it will be 45-50mins, brownie tin 35-40), until a sharp knife inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean.
    • Allow to cool in the tin for about 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool.

     

    Asparagus Soup

    Asparagus is available most of the year and makes a delicious soup, the addition of a little blue cheese (or any soft cheese) gives it a luxurious feel without being too rich.

     

     

     

    Serves 6

    15ml/ 1 tbsp olive oil

    1 medium leek, chopped

    6-8 sticks celery

    500g asparagus (about 24 spears)

    25g blue cheese (eg Cashel Blue) or any soft cheese such as Philadelphia or soft goat’s cheese

    2 vegetable stock cubes dissolved in 900ml boiling water

    Freshly ground black pepper to taste

     

    1. First wash and chop the leek and celery, remove the woody base from the asparagus (no more than 1cm, the rest can all be used) and chop the spears.
    2. Heat oil in large saucepan and add leek and celery, stir fry for 1-2 minutes, reduce the heat and cover, continue to cook gently for another couple of minutes until softened.
    3. Add asparagus, stir and then add stock. Bring to the boil, cover and simmer for 5-8 minutes until vegetables are soft. Crumble in the blue cheese and stir through.
    4. Remove from the heat. Liquidise and add freshly ground black pepper to taste. Add more water if desired.