Chinese sesame pork balls

Dead easy to make but packed full of flavour, and the bonus is they’re incredibly low fat too – even more so if you substitute minced pork for minced turkey breast meat.

Chinese seasame pork balls
Chinese seasame pork balls


Ingredients

  • 400g pack of minced pork (or minced turkey breast)
  • 2 tsps of Chinese five spice
  • Salt and papper
  • 1 tsp of granulated garlic powder
  • 100g sesame seeds
  • 100 ml gluten free soy sauce
  • 3 tbsps of Honey

Cooking method

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180c
  2. Add the mince, five spice, salt and pepper and garlic granules into a bowl and combine
  3. With your hands, make small balls with the mixture approx the size of a golf ball – mixture should make 8-10 balls
  4. Put the sesame seeds on a plate and roll each ball in them until they’re entirely covered
  5. Put the balls onto a baking tray covered with silver foil and cook for 30-40 minutes. They’re cooked when the sesame seeds turn light brown
  6. While the balls are cooking add the soy sauce and honey to a pan and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer until the sauce has reduced to a syrup-like consistency. 
  7. When ready to serve pour the sauce of the balls.

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 30 minutes

Serving ideas: serve with Stir fried vegetables, courgetti, rice or noodles


Advertisements

Lemon, honey and ginger prawns with wild rice and quinoa.

If you like a sweet and sour combo then you’ll love this recipe. Quick, easy and cheap to make it’s a great mid-week meal  suitable for the whole family.

Lemon, honey and ginger prawns
Lemon, honey and ginger prawns

Ingredients

  • 400g of raw prawns
  • A selection of veg to stir fry (I’ve used sugar snap peas, yellow pepper, baby corns and courgette)
  • 100g wild whole grain rice
  • 100g red quinoa
  • 1 lemon
  • 2 inch cube of fresh ginger chopped finely
  • 2 tbsps honey
  • 1 organic Kalo vegetable stock cube
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • Pinch of salt.

Cooking method

  1. Simmer the rice and quinoa in the vegetable stock for 10/15 minutes, drain and set aside
  2. While the rice is cooking add the juice from the lemon into a pan with the ginger and honey.
  3. Bring the mixture to the boil then simmer for 3 minutes then set aside. 
  4. In a frying pan cook the prawns in half the coconut oil and add the salt before transferring them to a hot wok. 
  5. Add your vegetables (I made courgetti from my courgettes) and pour in the sauce.
  6. With the remaining coconut oil stir fry the prawns and vegetables for a few minutes then add the cooked rice and quinoa.
  7. Serve immediately. 

Preparation time: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 30 minutes (including rice/quinoa cooking time)  

Moroccan Turkey with chickpeas

A twist on the standard turkey chilli which is a staple in my household, is Moroccan turkey with chickpeas. Instead of chilli heat the flavour comes from the blend of spices which infuses the meat and chickpeas. 

Great served with a green salad, couscous, flat bread and mint and yogurt dip, or brown rice or quinoa.

Moroccan turkey with chickpeas
Moroccan turkey with chickpeas

Moroccan spice blend

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

Ingredients

  • 1 pack of ground turkey breast
  • 1 can of drained chickpeas
  • 1 carton of passata
  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • 1 red pepper finely chopped
  • 2 carrots finely chopped
  • 2 tbsps of coconut oil
  • 1 tsp salt

Cooking Method

  1. Blend all the spices together and mix with I tablespoon of coconut oil
  2. With the other tablespoon of coconut oil fry the onions, pepper and carrots and set aside.
  3. Heat the spices and coconut oil mix in a non stick pan and fry the turkey mince, once cooked through add the salt, vegetables, chickpeas and passata. 
  4. Bring to the boil then summer for 20 minutes until the sauce reduces. 

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 25 minutes

Sesame-easy salmon

I love salmon but it can get boring eating it the same old way week in, week out so to add some interest and yummy flavours try this recipe. 

The marinade adds the depth of flavour while the sesame seeds adds additional nutty flavours as well as texture. 

seasame salmon
seasame salmon
 
Ingredients 

  • 100g sesame seeds
  • 2 salmon fillets (boneless and skinless)
  • Gluten free soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 2 spring onions
  • 2 garlic cloves (crushed)
  • 1 star anise 
  • 1 inch-size piece of fresh ginger 

Cooking method

  • Heat the oven to 170c
  • Roughly chop the spring onions, ginger and garlic
  • Blend the soy and honey together and add in the onions, ginger and garlic
  • Crush the star anise in a pestle and add to the mixture. 
  • Pour over the raw salmon fillets (in a shallow dish) and marinate for 24 hours. Turn the fillets over half way through
  • The salmon should absorb most of the marinade and the texture should have become quite sticky
  • Brush off the lumps of ginger, garlic, spring onion etc so the fillets are smooth
  • Sprinkle the sesame seeds on a plate and rolls the fillets in them coating each side (or just the top if you prefer) 
  • Cook for 25-30 minutes until the sesame seeds just start to turn brown. 

Serve with courgetti, stir-fried vegetables or rice. 

Preparation time: 24 hours to marinade. 30 minutes to cook. 

Serves 2 

Banana and chocolate loaf

What else is there to make when you have a bunch of bananas that have ripened beyond being edible… banana bread of course. 

You don’t need to add dark chocolate but for me it actually helps cut through the sweetness of the bananas, as does adding nuts to the top too.

Banana and chocolate loaf
Banana and chocolate loaf

Ingredients 

  • 200g of gluten free flour, coconut flour or quinoa flour (I used coconut flour)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs (beaten) 
  • 3 mashed ripe bananas 
  • 150ml maple syrup
  • 100ml melted coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 100g crushed almonds or walnuts
  • 75g dark chocolate (70% cocoa mass)

Cooking Method

  1. Pre heat the oven to 180c
  2. In one bowl mix the flour, baking soda and salt together 
  3. In another bowl mix the eggs, vanilla essence, bananas, maple syrup and coconut oil 
  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and combine
  5. Break-up the chocolate into small pieces and add to the mix.
  6. Transfer the mixture to a lined standard size loaf (I use silicon liners)
  7. Then sprinkle the crushed nuts on the top to finish
  8. Place in the centre of the oven and bake for 45-55 minutes.
  9. Transfer to a cooling rack and remove the paper when cool. 

 

Loaf  mixture  prepared and ready to cook
Loaf mixture prepared and ready to cook
 
Preparation time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 44-55 minutes

Makes 10 slices 

Marvellous mousakka 

I’ve finally cracked how to make a white sauce that doesn’t require a thickening agent such as flour, which is great news as not only does it work on moussaka I’m betting it’ll taste great in rice or pasta (gluten free) dishes too. 

Mousakka is a bit of labour of love as it does take a bit of prep but the end result it well worth the wait.

 

healthy, clean eating mousaka
Healthy, clean eating mousaka
 
Ingredients 

  • 400g of organic beef or lamb mince
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 1 chopped red pepper
  • 200g chopped mushrooms
  • 1 clove of crushed garlic
  • 2 tbsps of coconut oil 
  • 2 tbsps of olive oil
  • 2 small aubergines 
  • 1 tsp garlic salt
  • 1 tsp mixed herbs
  • 1 small carton of passata 
  • Seasoning 

For the white sauce 

  • 1 tsp English mustard
  • 50g grated Parmesan (optional)
  • 3 tbsps of Greek yoghurt
  • 50 ml almond milk 

Cooking method

  1. Fry off the mince (with no oil) and set aside to rest
  2. Fry off the chopped onion, mushrooms, peppers and garlic in the coconut oil 
  3. Add the mince back and add the passata, mixed herbs and garlic salt and simmer for 10 minutes
  4. While the filling is simmering slice the aubergine thinly and lay on a baking tray and coat with the olive oil. Bake at 180c for 30 mins turning over half way though.
  5. For the sauce add all the ingredients – mustard, Parmesan, yoghurt and almond milk in a blender and blitz
  6. In a square oven proof dish layer the mince and aubergine and pour the white sauce on the top
  7. Optional: grate more Parmesan on the top too
  8. Bake on 180c for 20-30 minutes.

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 20-30 minutes

Serves 4 

It’s a wrap – flaxseed fabulousness 

I felt I needed a big hit of fibre today so decided to have a flaxseed wrap for lunch. The wrap literally takes five minutes to make and taste lovely. 

Flaxseed wrap
Flaxseed wrap
 
Ingredients:

  • 3 tbsp ground flaxseed (you can buy organic packets of milled flaxseed)
  • 2 tbsp water
  • A pinch of salt and pepper
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 tsp of baking powder
  • Coconut oil for frying 

Cooking Method:

  1. Whisk all of the ingredients together in a bowl
  2. Heat the coconut oil in a small omelette pan
  3. Pour in the batter and spread out evenly like you were making a pancake
  4. Cook for a minute then flip over and cook for another minute
  5. Transfer to a plate and wait for the wraps to cool down before adding the filling.

Preparation time: 2 minutes

Cooking time: 2 minutes

Makes two wraps

Chicken and chickpea slow cooker casserole 

As the nights draw in and the heating is turned on to keep the chill at bay my food choices immediately turn to hearty, bone-warming meals which quite often means casseroles, stews and roasts. 

Tonight was one of those nights so I dusted off the slow cooker and made my favourite casserole. 

Even though it’s packed with veggies – seven to be exact, it’s a firm family favourite evidenced by my two children hoovering it up in minutes!! 

Cooking in a slow cooker (crockpot) doesn’t take much brain power as you literally chuck all the ingredients in the pot and let the cooking process create the magic. The real test is being patient and letting the casserole cook for five hours plus. 

 

chicken and chickpea casserole
Chicken and chickpea casserole

Ingredients:

  • 6-8 filleted chicken thighs
  • 3 tbsps coconut oil
  • 1 carton of passata
  • 2 tsps cumin seeds
  • 2 tsps coriander seeds
  • 2 Garlic cloves
  • 1 tbsp rock salt
  • 1 onion
  • 1 courgette
  • 200g chopped swede
  • Handful of mushrooms
  • 3 carrots
  • 200g chopped aubergine
  • 1 red pepper
  • 1 tbsp onion salt
  • 200ml cold water.

Cooking method

  1. Brown off the chicken thighs in the coconut oil
  2. In a pestle and mortar mash the rock salt, garlic, cumin seeds and coriander seeds into a paste and add to the slow cooker along with the chicken and drained chickpeas
  3. Chop all the vegetables into cubes and add to the slow cooker along with the passata and onion salt.
  4. Add water and mix all the ingredients well.
  5. Turn the cooker up to high and cook for a minimum of five hours.   

Preparation time: 20 minutes

Cooking time: 5 hours

Serves 6

No flap, no crap flapjacks

I think I can safely say I am a psyllium husk convert. I discovered it in a seeded bread recipe and haven’t found anything better to act as ‘glue’ when baking without conventional ingredients.

Today I road tested it with my flapjacks. I followed no set recipe instead I just mixed all my favourite ingredients and by luck (and skill of course) created the perfect no-crumble, guilt free, flavour packed flapjack. 

 

Flapjacks
Flapjacks

Ingredients 

  • 2 tbsps of psyllium husk (buy at organic/health food shops)
  • 400g rolled oats
  • 200g jumbo raisins and cranberries
  • 3 tbsps chia seeds
  • 2 tbsps coconut oil
  • 250g of rice sugar
  • 150ml of water
  • 1tbsp vanilla essence 
  • 75g crushed walnuts

Cooking method 

  1. Pre heat the oven to 180c
  2. Line a large baking tray with foil
  3. Put all the ingredients in a large bowl and mix well
  4. Flatten the mixture in the baking tray
  5. Bake on the top shelf for 30 minutes
  6. Take out of the oven and remove from the tray also removing the foil. Put the flapjacks back on the tray and bake for a further 10 minutes. 
  7. Remove from the oven and cut into 12 squares before they cool and harden.

12 servings

 

Flapjack square
Flapjack square
 

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 40 minutes.