oliveoilandlemon

recipes for healthy living

Tag: coconut

Spinach and Chickpeas

chickpeas-and-spinach

 

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.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Butternut squash soup with Cumin, Chives and Crispy Onions

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Even I get tired of cooking sometimes, especially January when the excess of December is still fresh in mind. That is why soup is a perfect excuse – Healthy eating disguising a bit of laziness!

I like to add some interest and the ground cuimin adds a lovely flavour and topped with chives and crispy onions brings this recipe to delicious heights. Fully of the goodness of the squash and spices and perfect to bring to work.

Makes enough for 4
1 butter nut squash peeled and chopped
1 medium onion chopped
2 tbsp oil
1 oz butter
1 tbsp cuimin seed ground
1/2 block of coconut dissolved with 1 pint of stock or 200ml coconut milk from tin
1 stock cube made up to one pint.
Chopped chives and crispy onions to serve

Heat 2 tbsp oil in a medium pan
Add the onion and sweat with the lid on for about 3 minutes
Add the ground cuimin seed, butter nut squash and the butter
Stir to mix and coat the veg with the butter as it melts.
Put lid on and cook for about 7 minutes on a medium heat to sweat the veg
Add the stock mixed with the coconut and cook until the veg is tender
Puree, taste for seasoning and serve with chopped chives and onions on top.

Coconut Prawns with Orange Dipping Sauce

Who can resist prawns? – I know I love them, just not the price. I have made a similar recipe before but this marmalade dipping sauce for me works better than else. You need the biggest prawns you can get for this recipe, don’t bother if you only have the tiddlers. This is such a moreish dish so be prepared for a scramble for the last one. If you are living in Dublin, Can I recommend the Asia Market – I often buy the frozen prawns there especially if I’m making this for a gang.

OO&L Coconut Prawns

Coconut Prawns with Orange marmalade dipping sauce
Serves 4-6

4oz coconut flakes
6oz bread crumbs – I use panko but use normal if you cant get it
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 oz plain flour
2 eggs, beaten
24 large prawns, peeled and deveined
Vegetable oil, for frying

4 heaped tbsp marmalade
1 tbsp dark rum
Pinch of chilli flakes

In a large bowl, combine coconut and the bread crumbs and season with salt and pepper.
Place flour, eggs, and bread crumb mixture into 3 separate bowls.
Dredge the prawns in flour, followed by egg finally, coat liberally with the bread crumbs.
(This order is important, as I have learnt!)
Lay them on parchment until ready to fry.
Ban all kids from the kitchen, then heat several inches of oil to 350 degrees F in a heavy bottom pot.
Fry the prawns in batches until golden brown and cooked through, about 3 to 4 minutes per batch. Be careful not to overcrowd and drain on kitchen roll.

For the Dipping Sauce: heat the marmalade in a small saucepan over low heat. Add the rum and add a few pinches of chilli flakes if you want some heat. Cook for a minute or two and serve with the prawns.

Red Peanut & Vegetable Curry for Thai New Year – Songkran

OO&L Thai Curry

I have not yet been to Thailand but was introduced to some of its food in recent years and it is one of my favourite cuisines. The heat does get to me but I find the combination of flavours, sweet sour salty & bitter usually with lots of heat compulsive eating – so while I have often been on fire, I have still found myself unable to stop tasting, so extraordinary have I found the flavours. It is easy enough to get most of the common ingredients in Dublin now so I usually make a monthly trip to the Asia Market on Drury St. to stock up on my Thai essentials. The theater alone in the shop is worth stopping by even if you don’t need anything or don’t yet know what you need.

This curry paste is easy to make once you line up the ingredients. It is apparently better to crush them in a mortar and pestle (the traditional way – I hear prospective Mothers in Law judge suitors by the size of their pestle) rather than use a food processor (I don’t judge!). I usually use about 1/3 of this paste when I’m making dinner for 2. You can up the chilli content or lower as you wish.

1/2 doz dried chillies
1 tbsp chopped coriander root
1 tbsp chopped galangal use ginger if you can’t get it
1 tbsp chopped lemongrass
1 clove garlic
3 tbsp chopped thai shallots or 1 of ours if you can’t get them
1/2 tsp shrimp paste (don’t go without it, you need this!)
4 tbsp peanuts (boiled until tender)

To make the paste add ingredients in order listed to your mortar and pestle them one by one until all blended and no large lumps are left. Set aside about 1/3 for this recipe and store in the fridge until needed.

2 chicken breasts
1 can coconut milk (400ml)
Vegetables of choice (I used tender stem broccoli blanched for 5 minutes and some cherry tomatoes)
Seasonings – Palm sugar, Fish sauce, soy sauce, as needed
Handful of Thai basil
Toasted peanuts

Poach the chicken breasts until almost cooked and slice to bite size pieces
Heat a wok and add the paste with some oil and cook out for a few minutes
Add the coconut milk and turn heat to medium and cook for about 10 minutes until the paste and coconut milk have become a lovely sauce
Season well with palm sugar, fish sauce, soy and add the chicken, broccoli and halved cherry tomatoes, and simmer to finish cooking.
Check seasoning again then top with chiffonade of thai basil and toasted peanuts and serve with rice.

OO&L Market Chillies

Show your Love ♥ Coconut & Lemon Cake with Glazed blueberries

OO&L Coconut Blueberry Cake II

love letters

My daughter is getting very hyped about St Valentine’s day – she is currently focusing on making her teacher a card, a card for Niall from One Direction (God help me, she is only 5) and a cake for her daddy. I haven’t the heart to break it to her that Daddy is not that keen on eating too much cake. I have also been told that it is OK to buy her a little teddy or bunny – ‘just something small for me’.

Victoria sponge was the first cake I ever learnt to make. I still love it and you really cant fail with this cake as long as you use soft butter and don’t overmix. Its extra special with the glazed blueberries, which make a great addition to most desserts especially a cheesecake or apple tart. The healthy part of this cake is to bring it into work and show your workmakes how much you love them and only eat one slice yourself!

Cake
4 free-range eggs
8oz caster sugar
8oz self-raising flour or self-raising gluten free flour blend
2 tsp baking powder
8oz unsalted soft butter
2 oz dessicated coconut
jam or lemon curd to serve

Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4.
Grease and line 2 x 20cm/8in sandwich tins
Break the eggs into a large mixing bowl, then add the sugar, flour, baking powder and soft butter.
Mix everything together until well combined- it is easiest with an electric hand mixer
The finished mixture should be of a soft ‘dropping’ consistency – it should fall off a spoon easily.
Divide the mixture evenly between the tins and gently smooth the surface of the cakes.
Place the tins on the middle shelf of the oven and bake for 25 minutes.
Check them after 20 minutes.
The cakes are done when they’re golden-brown and coming away from the edge of the tins.
Remove them from the oven and set aside to cool in their tins for a few minutes then run a palette knife around the inside edge of the tin and carefully turn the cakes out onto a cooling rack.
Set aside to cool completely.
To assemble the cake, place one cake half onto a plate and spread it with plenty of jam or lemon curd.Top with some more lemon curd and cover with dessicated coconut.
Serve with the blueberries and tell you’re other half you love them.

Glazed Blueberries
2 tubs blueberries – about 400g
2 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp water
1 tbsp cassis if you have it
zest of half a lemon

Heat a pan to medium and tip in the blueberries,
Sprinkle over the sugar and shake the pan
Add the water and cassis if you are using it and swirl the pan to make a glaze

OO&L Coconut Blueberry Cake

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