Fennel Gratin – 251 calories

Fennel – you either love or hate this vegetable.  It has a very distinct flavour and in my opinion, a great accompaniment to fish….

Fennel Gratin – 251 calories

Preparation Time:   5 mins

Cooking Time:  25 mins

Serves:   4

Calories per serving:   251.3


Ingredients

Fennel, Bulb                         –      2½ Medium Bulbs/750g

Cheese, Parmesan               –      15g

Breadcrumbs, Panko             –      30g

Cream, Single, Fresh            –      1 Sm Pot/142150ml

Mature Cheddar Cheese       –      40g

Salted Butter                        –      20g

Cornflour                              –      2 Tbsps/30g

Semi-Skimmed Milk              –      60ml


Method

Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6.

Trim the fennel tops, then cut into thin slices. Grate the two cheeses and combine with the breadcrumbs in a bowl.

Place into a microwave steamer and cook on full power for 4 – 5 minutes until softened.

Arrange in an even layer in an ovenproof dish, season with salt and pepper. 

Put the cornflour into a small pan and mix to a paste with the milk. Add the butter. Heat over a low heat (stirring constantly) until a thick sauce is achieved. 

Once the sauce has thickened, remove from the heat and slowly add the cream, stirring as you do this.

Pour the creamy sauce over the sliced fennel, stir the mixture to ensure all the fennel is covered.

Sprinkle the breadcrumb / cheese mixture evenly over the dish and place in the pre-heated oven for around 20 minutes until golden brown and bubbling. 

Ideal as an accompaniment to fish.


Nutrition Information

Nutrition Data Per Serving

Calories (kcal)   251.3

Protein (g)   8.6

Sugars (g)   5.1

Fat (g)   16.7

Fruit & Veg   2.5

Carbohydrate (g)   16.9

Fibre (g)   4.5

Romano Peppers Stuffed with Creamy Turkey Mince – 231 Calories

56537286066__5cc73973-8364-44db-a965-8fd745513b7c.jpgA few remaining peppers to be harvested which have been sheltering in the greenhouse –  here’s what we decided to do with them!  Leeks and savoy cabbage bulked them out and added fibre and cream cheese with Dijon mustard added a lovely creamy taste.

Preparation Time: 20 minutes

Cooking Time: 40 minutes

Serves: 4

Calories per serving: 230.8

Ingredients

Turkey, Mince, Lean, 7% Fat – 250g

Leeks, Raw – 100g

Romano Peppers, Capsicum, Red or Green – 4 Peppers/320g

Lemon Juice – ½ Juiced/18ml

Mustard, Dijon – 2 Tsps/10g

Soft Cream Cheese – 25g

Cabbage, Savoy, Raw, Average – 120g

Stock Cubes, Chicken – 1 Cube/6g

Olive Oil – 10ml

Butter – 5g

Cheese, Cheddar, Mature, Average – 50g

Method

Preheat the oven to gas 7, 200 degrees C.

Halve the peppers lengthways and scrape out the seeds with a teaspoon (discard the seeds).

Transfer to a lined baking tray (or two smaller trays). Use a pastry brush to paint over 5 ml of the olive oil, season, then roast for 15 mins.

IMG_0043Meanwhile, heat a large frying pan over a medium heat and add 5ml of the oil and the butter.

Add the leek and cabbage and cook over a low heat (covered) for around 30 mins, stirring regularly until softened and translucent. Don’t allow to brown.

Remove cabbage and leek mixture in a bowl and return pan to the heat. Turn up the temperature to medium. Add the mince and brown, stirring to break up any clumps. Add the stock cube and simmer for 2-3 mins. Add a little water if it starts to dry out.

Add back the leek and cabbage mixture, the lemon juice, mustard and finally the soft cheese. Stir into the sauce until melted.

When the sauce coats the mince, season to taste.

Pile the filling into the peppers, scatter with the Cheddar, then return to the oven for 20 mins until the cheese is golden. Serve up 2 halves per plate with a handful of rocket.

Nutrition Data Per Serving

Calories (kcal) 230.8

Protein (g) 17.1

Sugars (g) 7.2

Fat (g) 14.5

Fruit & Veg 1.9

Carbohydrate (g) 7.9

Fibre (g) 3.4

Crunchy Topped Fish Pie – 343 calories

IMG_0038 4Traditionally a fish pie is topped with mashed potato, but this easy topping is a mixture of mature cheddar, Parmesan and Panko breadcrumbs. Lowers the calories, less preparation and adds a lovely “crunch”!

Shown served with mashed carrot and swede and savoy cabbage. Total 450 calories.

Preparation Time: 20 mins

Cooking Time: 40 mins

Serves: 4

Calories per serving: 343.1

Ingredients

Leeks, trimmed-200g

Flour, Plain-50g

Butter-25g

Milk, Skimmed-500ml

Haddock, Loin Fillets-250g

Cod, Loins-145g

Frozen peas-120g

Breadcrumbs, Panko-30g

Cheese, Cheddar, Mature-50g

Cheese, Parmesan-2 Tbsps/20g

Method

(1) Wash, trim and finely slice the leeks. Grate the two cheese (together in a medium bowl)

(2) Heat a large oven and flame-proof casserole on a medium heat on the hob and melt the butter. Add the sliced leeks, and fry over a low heat with the lid on until soft (but not browned).

(3) Place the fish fillets together in a large lidded microwave dish. Add 200ml of the milk, and cook on full power in a microwave for 4-5 minutes until fish is cooked. Once cooked, being careful not to burn your fingers, remove the fish fillets from the milk into a plate (reserving the milk for later). Remove any skin or bones from the fillets. Break carefully, using a fork, into large flakes.

(4) Sprinkle the flour over the frying leeks and stir until butter has been absorbed by the flour. Lower the heat (very low).

(5) Add 300ml of cold milk, a little at a time, stirring the mixture well to avoid lumps.

(6) Add the milk from the poached fish a little at a time, keeping the heat low and avoiding lumps.

(7) Once all the milk is added, keep stirring the mixture until it thickens to the consistency of thick custard.

(8) Add the peas and stir through.

(9) Add the fish and combine, being careful not to break up the flakes.

(10) Grate the two cheese into a medium bowl and add the panko breadcrumbs. Combine. Sprinkle over the fish mixture, ensuring everything is covered.

(11) Place in the hot oven, and cook for 20-30 minutes or until the top is golden brown.

(12) Serve with green vegetables – savoy cabbage is perfect!

Nutrition Data Per Serving

Calories (kcal) 343.1

Protein (g) 32.4

Sugars (g) 8.6

Fat (g) 12.6

Fruit & Veg 1.1

Carbohydrate (g) 24.6

Fibre (g) 2.8

Pork Steak Roasted with Tomato, Chorizo and Spicy Beans – 381 calories

IMG_0001This was an adapted recipe and absolutely delicious. Quite easy too and healthy – plenty of protein.

Pork Steak Roasted with Tomato, Chorizo and Spicy Beans

Preparation Time: 15 mins

Cooking Time: 1 hr

Serves :4

Calories per serving: 381

Ingredients

Pork Loin Steak – 4 x 100g/400g

Sausage, Chorizo – 43g

Oil, Olive – ½ Tbsp/7.5ml

Carrots, Raw – 80g

Onions, Brown – 100g

Garlic, Raw – 2 Cloves/6g

Celery – 1 stick – 50g

Paprika – 1 Tsp/2g

Lemon, Fresh (zest and juice) -1 Lemon/115g

Peppers, Chilli, Red – 1 Pepper/13g

Bay Leaves, Dried – 2 or 1 Tsp/0.6g

Rosemary, Dried -1 Tsp/0.7g

Tomatoes, Chopped, Canned – 2 Cans/800g

Beans, Cannellini, Drained – 2 cans/480g

Parsley, Dried -0.4g

Oil, Olive, Extra Virgin -10ml

Method

Preparation: Peel and finely chop the onion and garlic. Wash and finely dice the celery stick.

Finely chop the chilli pepper. Cut the chorizo into slices and remove skin (if present). Zest the lemon and juice.

Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 4, 180C (350F).

In a small bowl combine the paprika, lemon zest, half the lemon juice, a little salt and the virgin olive oil. Brush this mixture all over the pork and allow to sit for a couple of minutes (or overnight) while you prepare the tomato mixture.

Heat a little oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. Add the celery, onion and garlic and cook for a couple of minutes. Then add the chilli, bay leaf, rosemary leaves, tomatoes, water and beans.

Season with a little salt and black pepper. Stir well. Bring up to gentle simmer. Cook (covered) for around an hour, stirring every 15-20 minutes.

Remove the lemon zest from the pork steaks. Grill the pork loin steaks under a medium grill for 5-7 minutes each side.

Stir the remainder of the lemon juice and parsley through the bean and tomato mixture. Discard the bay leaf. Taste and season with a little more salt and pepper if necessary.

Serve up the grilled steaks alongside the tomatoey bean mixture.

Nutrition Data Per Serving

Calories (kcal) 381.5

Carbohydrate (g) 22.6

Fat (g) 16.2

Fibre (g) 9.5

Fruit & Veg 5.0

Protein (g) 33.5

Brunch; sausages, tomatoes and mushrooms: 367 calories

IMG-2313I LOVE sausages, but they can be extremely calorific and not particularly healthy.  One only has to look at the “traffic light” information given on the packaging to understand that these need to be eaten occasionally!

Screenshot 2018-11-10 at 13.29.24

However, going for a “meatier” good quality sausage can be worth it, even if it’s higher in calories.

The way I get around this is to making my sausage go further! For example, these good quality Cumberland supermarket sausage were 271 calories per 2 (grilled) sausages.

I’m only on an allowance of 1100 calories, so I have to be creative.

I only have 2 meals a day – lunch and dinner. At the weekends we will often have “brunch” and dinner.

Today is a brunch day. By slicing the sausages lengthwise, we have just 1.5 sausages each – reserving the other for another meal. 246 calories for 1.5.

Half a tin of plum tomatoes : 42 calories

Half a pack of chestnut mushrooms (16 cals) fried in 3g of butter and 1tsp of olive oil (65 cals). In my experience, adding a small amount of good quality oil/butter or both is worth the calories as it really adds to the flavour and to the appearance. They can also contribute to helping me feel fuller for longer.

Whole meal was therefore 367 calories.

I did use 2 mini pitta breads lightly toasted (44 cals each) to mop up all the lovely juice from the tomatoes!

That, alongside my regular cups of tea will keep me sustained until this evening now….

Making healthy swaps – turkey chilli with 50/50 rice and stir fried cabbage/leek – 448 calories

IMG_2310The chilli was bulked out with finely diced carrot and celery. Turkey mince is very low in calories (this was 7& fat so still plenty of flavour). The chilli was 196 calories.

Stir fried cabbage and leek = 74 cals replaced some of the rice. It also enables you to get more of your vegetable portions in.

Just 40g of brown rice = 140 cals.

20g soured cream = 38 cals (no low fat or reduced fat – the real thing!).

Turkey chilli, serves 4 196 calories

Turkey, Mince -250g

Onions, Raw -100g

Celery, 1 stick -85g

Garlic, Raw, Average-2 Cloves/6g

Chilli Powder, Average-¾ Tsp/3g

Paprika, Average-1 Tsp/2g

Mixed Herbs, Average-1 Tsp/5g

Oil, Olive, Average-6ml

Double Concentrated Tomato Puree -35g

Carrots, Raw-110g

Beans, Kidney, Red, Canned, in Water, Drained -1 Can/240g

Peppers, Chilli, Crushed -¼ Tsp/0.125g

Tomatoes, Chopped, Canned -400g

Water, Mineral Or Tap-40ml

Method

Preparation: Peel and finely dice the onion. Peel and finely dice the garlic clove. Finely dice the celery. Peel and finely dice the carrot.

Put the olive oil into a pan and warm over a moderate heat.

Add the onions, carrot and celery, and let them cook until soft and pale gold. Add the garlic and continue to cook for 5 minutes. Add the chilli flakes.

Add the minced turkey to the pan, and let it brown lightly, stirring occasionally.

Add herbs, the tinned tomatoes, water and tomato puree. Bring back to a simmer and leave to cooked, covered, for about 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes. Add the drained beans after the first 30 minutes. Add a little water it it is drying out too much.

Let the mixture simmer for a good 5-7 minutes until thoroughly hot.

Serves 3 – 4 depending on how hungry you are!

 

Nutrition Data Per Serving

Calories (kcal) 196.1

Carbohydrate (g) 15.2

Fat (g) 7.1

Fibre (g) 6.1

Fruit & Veg 2.4

Protein (g) 16.3

Tuna steak, bubble and squeak! 459 calories

IMG_2305

Had this delicious dinner tonight.

A chunky Yellow Fin Tuna Steak (Aldi, frozen) at just over 100 calories (107 cals), bubble and squeak made with left over mash, stir fried cabbage and leek fried in a little olive oil (286 cals) and 75g green beans (18 cals).

The marinade was a simple soy sauce, lemon juice and honey mix (48 cals).

Cheap, easy to cook and very delicious and healthy!