recipes for healthy living

Category: Mains

Tender Juicy Fauxtisserie Chicken


You know that lovely rotisserie chicken which you can buy over the counter at some delis – well this is like this only it’s not brushed with load of fat every few minutes BUT you still get that lovely falling off the bone tender juice chicken that is so delicious. You could of course simply up the temperature to cook it a bit quicker but if you have the time, try it this way. Throw it in the oven and get out to the garden for some air!

Serves 4
2 tsp fennel seeds
1 tsp oregano
Zest of half a lemon
2tbsp fresh chopped thyme plus a few thyme sprigs (if you had lemon thyme, even better)
2 cloves garlic peeled chopped and mashed
1tbsp ground sea salt
50 ml oil
1 lemon cut in half
1 large chicken 2kg approx.
1lb baby potatoes

Oven at 150C for slow cooking
Oven at 200 for Regular Cook
Pound the fennel seeds, add the oregano garlic thyme together with the salt
Mix in half of the oil.
Dry the chicken with paper towels if it is a bit wet from the fridge
Rub the mixture all over the chicken.
Stuff one 1/2 of the lemon into the chicken.
Toss the remaining half, the thyme sprigs into your roasting dish
Place the chicken on top.
Clean the baby potatoes and cut the large ones in half, toss in the rest of the oil and season well then add to the roasting dish around the chicken.
Roast, basting the chicken and turning the potatoes every hour, until the chicken is dark golden brown, cooked through and potatoes are very tender about 3 hours. Alternatively you can up the temp and cook in about 1 and1/4 hour.

Check the chicken is done with a meat thermometer or by checking the juices run clear from thickest part of the chicken.

Sumac and Lemon Spiced Lamb Chops with Chickpea Puree

sumac lamp chops

This spice mix works so well on the lamp chops and is perfect with the chickpea puree. It is a quick and easy meal for family and friends.

Serves 4

8 lamb chops
1/2 tsp sumac
1 tsp nigella seeds
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
1 tbsp cumin and coriander seeds
1 tbsp plain flour
3 tbsp oil separated
2 tbsp fresh mint chopped
2 tins chickpeas (reserve half tin liquid)
1 clove garlic peeled chopped and mashed
1 shallot finely chopped
2 tbsp of madeira (Optional)
1 small knob of butter

Dry toast the coriander and cumin seeds until fragrant. Tip into a mortar and pestle and grind.  Tip out into a flat dish, add the sumac, nigella, zest and plain flour and mix well.
Season your lamp chops and press each side into the spice mix and set aside for 30 minutes to develop the flavors.
Meanwhile , heat 1 tbsp oil in a pan and add the shallot and garlic and cook over a gentle heat until softened. Tip in the chickpeas and the reserved liquid and simmer for about 5 minutes over a gentle heat. Tip into a blender and blend well, adding the other tbsp of oil. Taste and season with salt and pepper as required. Tip into a pot and keep warm while you cook the chops.
Heat the oil and in batches, brown the chops well on both sides. IF you wish you can complete the cooking on the pan (medium is about 4-6 minutes depending on thickness) but I like to transfer to a hot oven to complete the cooking .
Deglaze the pan with 1 tbsp madeira, add lemon juice and 30ml water and a small knob of butter. Season and add the chopped mint.
Serve the chickpea mash with 2 chops and some of the pan sauce.

Easy and delicious!

Egg and Ham Galette

egg and ham galettes


If you are a pastry maker I really hope these will appeal to you as the are easy to make,  lovely and tasty – they make a great mid week meal or for lunch at work or school. My sisters recently reminded me that they aren’t all pastry makers so if that is the case for you I would say that there are lots of good quality short crust pastrys out there so go ahead and use that if you fancy making these… no one need know!

Egg and Ham Galettes with tomatoes

Serves 6


200gr plain flour

100gr cold butter cubed

1 tsp salt

2 tbsp total of mixed chopped fresh herbs (Chives Oregano Thyme)

1 egg

3 tbsp water


60gr ham of choice – parma or serrano

60gr grated cheese – Manchego works great but simple cheddar will work too

6 small eggs

3 tbsp chopped chives

salt and pepper to taste

12 cherry tomatoes

Combine the flour, salt and herbs in a food processor. Add the cold butter and pulse until it resembles breadcrumbs.

Add the egg and 2 tbsp of the water and pulse. It it doesn/t come together add the rest of the water. Remove and gently knead to bring together into a ball, flatten and wrap in cling film and chill for at least 30 minutes. Roll out into a rectangle about 2mm thick and cut out into circles approx 6″ in diameter.

Place onto baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Spread the cheese, ham and cherry tomatoes onto the 6 circles. Bring the edges if the pastry up so it forms a basket, Make sure to bring it up by an inch as you want to ensure the egg doesn’t spill out of its basket. Crack the eggs one by one into a small ramekin (easier to pour into the pastry baskets).

Tip the egg into the pastry basket, season well, sprinkle over the chopped chives and bake in a preheated oven at 200C for about 15 minutes until the pastry is golden brown and the egg is done.  Serve as is with a lovely green salad.












Turkey Kebabs with Satay Sauce


I’m a bit tired of red meat lately so its been all veggie dishes or fish and poultry. This one is really easy and quick for a perfect mid week meal. Turkey is a great meat- high in protein and pretty lean fat wise. Try get it cooked just perfectly as nothing worse than dry meat- if then worst happens the satay sauce will help!

This makes much more satay than  you will need but it keeps in the fridge for a few weeks and is lovely with lots of things as a dipping sauce. A few large spoons of it into some warmed coconut milk makes a delicious sauce also if you want to make turkey meat balls and cook them in that for an alternative.

For the Turkey Kebabs
400gr turkey mince – seek out free range or organic if affordable
1 tsp chopped red chilli
2 tbsp chopped fresh chives
2 tbsp chopped fresh coriander
1 spring onion finely chopped
1 tsp salt
Zest and juice of 1/2 lime
1 tsp honey

Mix everything together well and divide into 4 portions
With wet hands pick up one portion and mold around a metal skewer until it is like a sausage shape and the skewer is in the middle
Into the fridge for a few minutes to chill
Line a flat tray with foil and place the skewers onto it and cook under a hot grill turning regularly until they are done – about 10 minutes in total but if you are unsure cut in and check there is no pink or use a meat thermometer.
Serve with some rice and some satay sauce for dipping.

Satay Sauce
1 tbsp rapeseed oil
1 small onion finely diced
1/2 red pepper cored and diced or 1/2 cooked red pepper from a jar
1 tsp each of ginger and garlic paste
150ml coconut milk
100ml water
4oz crunchy peanut butter
2fl oz sweet chilli sauce
2fl oz soy sauce
2 tbsp kecap manis (if you have it)
2oz toasted peanuts

Heat oil in a medium pot, add the garlic, onion, pepper and ginger.
Cook over a low heat  for about 5 minutes
Add coconut milk, peanut butter, soy, chilli sauce, and water.
Stir well to combined, Bring to the boil and then gently simmer for about 10 minutes until it has thickened and reduced a little.  Blend with an immersion blender if you like it smooth. Any extra will keep in the fridge.

Spinach and Chickpeas



This is such a delicious tasty and filling dish perfect for Autumn. Easy and quick to prepare it is the perfect vegetarian meal if you aren’t a meat eater or pair with fish or chicken if you wish. I always keep frozen spinach in the freezer and it is perfect for this dish, you don’t even have to defrost, simply stir in for the last 5 minutes. This dish is a super meal with protein carbs and good fats and would be perfect for a large family gathering as you can easily double up and make ahead without adding the spinach, then simply reheat and add the spinach as below.

Spinach and Chickpeas

Serves 4 hungry or 6 as a side

1 white onion peeled and sliced
2 cloves of garlic peeled chopped and mashed
1 thumb size piece of ginger peeled and chopped finely
1 tbsp tomato puree
1 tsp each of turmeric, ground cuimin and coriander
1 400ml tin coconut milk
2 medium tins of chickpeas drained and rinsed
200gr frozen spinach
2 tbsp oil
Salt to season

Heat the oil over a medium heat and add the onion until softened but not coloured
Add the ginger and garlic and cook out for about 5 minutes
Dont be afraid to add a splash of water if it looks too dry
Stir in the tomato puree and spices and cook for about 2 minutes
Then add the drained chickpeas and coconut milk, season well and cook for
about 10 minutes until the flavours are well developed.
Taste and be sure to add some more salt if you think it needs it.
Just before serving, add in the frozen spinach and stir through and cook for about 5 minutes.
If you have some fresh coriander, sprinkle this on top.







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