Friday, 29 August 2014

Coconut Prawns with Glass Noodles

This is an amazing recipe I made this evening from the Clean and Lean Diet Cookbook, a definite buy for anyone wanting to eat really healthy food. Anyone that knows me well enough knows that I absolutely love cooking and I love to experiment with new recipes and make them my own. Obviously this blog is all about losing weight and eating a healthy diet so I thought this was a perfect recipe to share, and definitely one of the best dishes I’ve cooked in a long time!


As it says on the recipe page, top tip: ginger is good for your digestive health and can help your body to break down fatty foods.


Recipe:

(Serves 4)


Ingredients:

20 tiger prawns, raw and unpeeled

2 tbsp sesame oil

2 garlic cloves, crushed

5cm piece of fresh ginger, peeled and grated

1 red chilli, finely sliced

50g creamed coconut

3 tbsp of soy sauce

250g glass rice noodles

A bunch of coriander, to garnish

1 lime, quartered, to garnish


Method:



  1. Rinse the tiger prawns under cold water

  2. In a wok, heat the oil and gently fry the garlic, ginger and chilli, until well softened. Add the creamed coconut and 120ml boiling water. The sauce should be of a thick consistency. Simmer for approximately 5 minutes; do not allow to boil.

  3. Add the prawns and continue to cook until they have turned pink.

  4. Add the soy sauce and taste. Add more of both if needed to adjust the flavour.

  5. Meanwhile, cook the noodles according to the packet instructions.

  6. Serves the prawns over noodles, sprinkled with coriander and a wedge of lime on the side.



This is my own take on the recipe, being at home meant I was able to use tiger prawns as they are quite expensive, if I was still at uni I would adapt it to what I was able to afford!! Also the original recipe used a green chilli but I decided to use a red chilli, which gave it a good kick.

 



Curry in the making!


 



The final dish!

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Green Tea

A couple of years ago I started drinking green tea. Personally, I love the refreshing taste of it but it is an acquired taste. However there are many benefits to drinking green tea which include:



  • Weight loss

  • Diabetes prevention

  • Reduces risk of heart disease

  • Reduces blood pressure

  • Prevents depression


As far as I know, none of these have been proven as such. Although these aren’t strictly the reasons that I drink the green tea, although they are an added bonus! I first started drinking fruit tea and I still drink that occasionally but soon after there were lots of good stories about how beneficial it is to your health! And I’ve enjoyed it ever since. I find that it’s a really good alternative to normal tea, particularly if you want to lose weight, as you don’t have the added calories of milk and sugar!

 



Amazing cup of green tea at Ping Pong!

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Moroccan Chicken Pot Pies with cumin and a crisp filo top

One of my favourite dishes is chicken pie, unfortunately I would normally make that with puff pastry, not good for the diet! So I’ve been meaning to try this one for a while and it was absolutely delicious, a great twist on your class chicken pie. The spices work so well with the chicken and vegetables and the filo top tastes just as great as puff pastry would, if not better! You must try it if you love chicken pie. It says to serve with a crisp green salad but personally I don’t think that’s needed, maybe a bit of broccoli if you feel you want more veg.


So here’s the recipe and some pictures to make you want to try it even more:


Ingredients:

Spray oil

2 large onions, finely sliced

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

3 cm piece of fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped

2 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp paprika

4 chicken breasts, cut into chunks

3 tbsp cornflour

600ml chicken stock

2 carrots, peeled and sliced

100g frozen peas

Salt and pepper

3 sheets of filo pastry


Method:

Preheat the oven to 180c.

Spray a little oil into a large pan over a medium heat. Add the onion and cook gently for about 5 minutes, stirring from time to time, until softened. Add the garlic and ginger and cook for a further minute before adding the cumin and paprika. Then, allow them to toast for a minute.

In the meantime, toss the chicken pieces in the cornflour and a little salt and pepper until evenly coated. Stir these into the onion mixture and cook for 1 minute. Gradually add the stock, stirring all the time to blend in the cornflour without any lumps. Turn up the heat and add the carrots, peas and seasoning. Allow to come to the boil, then pop a lid on and reduce to simmer gently for 5 minutes until the chicken is cooked through and the sauce thickened.

Meanwhile, prepare the topping, slice up the filo pastry width ways and separate the sheets.

Once ready, divide the pie filling among six ramekins or hot pot dishes. Then divide the filo strips into six bunches. Pick up the bunches and lay one messily on top of each pie. The more bits that are sticking up and messy, the more likely the filo is to crisp up. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and piping hot, the filo is crisp and golden brown and the sauce is bubbling.

Once cooked, remove from the oven and serve.



For anyone wondering, there is also only 320 calories per serving!

 




 



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Wednesday, 27 August 2014

My New Blog!


I have some good and some bad news. Obviously it will be best to start with the good news. 

 

Here it is! My brand new blog layout which is better than anything I could have ever imagined, all thanks to Zoe (Sweet Electric - http://sweetelectricblog.com)!

 

It's way easier to navigate so if you just want to read my recipes it is all under that tab. It means you don't have to scroll through my entire blog to find the one you want. 

 

Now for the bad news. As you may or may not have noticed I have stopped posting as often. There's a lot I have to focus on right now so I have to get my priorities straight. Unfortunately (or luckily?) this means I won't be posting as often for a couple of weeks. I have so many ideas of things to write about but I want to be able to put a lot of thought and effort into them so thru don't seem half hearted. 

 

In the meantime, look around the new blog layout as there are a few extras on here. For my new readers, you probably have a bit of reading to do! :) 

 

And while I actually remember (I keep forgetting something so great), I have a few exciting things coming in the next few weeks! So stay tuned!!

 

Take care! X


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Saturday, 23 August 2014

Spicy Chicken Rice

This is my take on spicy rice. If you've ever had it at nandos, it is possibly the best thing since sliced bread. It is the ultimate comfort food but without any guilt. Everyone should try this, you won't regret it.

 

Ingredients (per person):

2 oz of brown rice

½ a pepper

½ an onion

Chilli powder

1 crushed clove of garlic

1 egg

1 chicken breast

Olive oil

Soy Sauce

Butter

 

Method:

 


Start by weighing out your rice, you don't want more than this otherwise you will lose all the other ingredients and basically just eat rice. Cook the rice according to the packet instructions. Also cook the chicken breast with a bit of seasoning in the oven for 25 minutes on 180C.


 


 


 


Melt the butter in a pan. Then turn down the heat and crack the egg in the pan, then scramble it. Cook it for about 4 minutes or until it is to your liking.



 Chop up the onion and pepper and crush a garlic clove in with the onion.

 


Put some olive oil in a pan and add the onion and garlic. Let it cook on a medium heat for about 5  minutes so the onion softens. Make sure you keep stirring so that it doesn't catch.




Add the pepper and cook for a further 2 minutes, then add in the rice and soy sauce (as much to your taste) and chilli powder (again to your taste, depending on how much spice you want). Mix it all together and cook for about 3 minutes, make sure you keep stirring so you don't burn the rice.


Shred the cooked chicken so it is in smaller pieces. 



 



Add the egg and chicken and mix in with the rice mixture and cook for a bit 3 minutes to heat it all through.


And here's the delicious final dish! I could eat it all over again, it was that good. I could give nandos a run for their money :) 

Next time I would probably add carrots but we didn't have any in the house at the time. And maybe a bit more chilli powder!
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Where will I be in 5 years time?

This is a question I get asked quite a lot, even if I prefer not to be asked!


However, I’ve been thinking about it more recently. I mean my future is happening now; I’m not a kid anymore.


At the moment I’m living in Kingston which is half an hour from central London. As long as I can remember I have always wanted to live in London but for now I’m happy enough in Kingston. I would definitely want to live in or near Kingston in 5 years time.


I would also love to reach my goal weight (this will obviously happen( but also to maintain it. People will lose weight but will often gain more than they lost. So I want to be able to find the right balance to maintain my weight at a healthy level so I am not stuck in this position again.


This blog has become so important to me over the past couple of months (sorry, not sorry, that I keep going on about it). So, saying this, as it becomes more popular on a daily basis, it would be fantastic if I could make it something reasonably big. I’m already looking to invest more time into it and looking into getting a logo and better blog format. Are there any computer geniuses out there that could help a girl out?I’m really hoping to get it noticed a bit more, if you could share it with your family and friends I would really owe you one!


One other thing I’ve wanted to do for about 6 years now, but never had enough knowledge, ideas or a topic for it, is a recipe book. Now that I have managed to find my creative side, it seems like the right time to do it, or make a start at least.


The last thing of where I would like to be in 5 years time is having a flat or small house. Renting or buying isn’t really an issue. It is more the point of having my own space and being able to have it how I want it. I’ve mentioned before that I am crazy organised so I would really love to have an office space where I can have inspiration and motivation boards, shelves all neatly arranged with everything in folders and somewhere for all my stationary (I have a lot, it is practically everywhere).


Ok, so I know what you’re thinking, she hasn’t mentioned having a boyfriend, settling down and getting married. Sure it would be great if that happened but that will happen on its own and there is no need to rush that right now.



As for my career, I’m still weighing up options and I will have to keep you posted about that one.


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Friday, 22 August 2014

Fisherton Mill

I started the day by taking my Nan to Wilton Garden Centre, because I’m just a good granddaughter! I normally just like looking at all the pretty pink flowers.






We then went to Wilton Shopping Village to meet my mum and sister for a spot of lunch. I had a lovely pot of tea while the others had homemade lemonade.

 




I obviously didn’t have any but I just had to share with you all these homemade cakes.

 







For lunch we each had different things (lucky for me taking pictures). My mum had the Moroccan hummus, chickpeas and olives open sandwich. My sister had the smoked chicken and avocado salad with new potatoes, green beans, crispy bacon and Parmesan croutes. While I had a Greek salad with roast aubergine pate.

 




 




We all completely cleared our plates; it is so yummy there! My mum and sister got cake while I took a walk. I mean look at how pretty it is.

 



I then went into a cute little vintage shop which I will definitely go back to when I get paid! I got some little presents in there though.

 





 


Fisherton Mill also has a shop and gallery but we didn’t go in there today. The cafĂ© is always popular though and they have them in Salisbury and Wilton. I definitely recommend going there if you’ve never been.

 




It is clear that the food is all homemade and they change their menu relatively often so if you only go there occasionally then you will always get to choose from a different menu!


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