recipes for healthy living

Tag: spicy

Spicy Baked Beans

I’m back training – before work at 630am in the gym you will find me working hard (thanks Nigel my PT!)…. excuse me while I just polish my halo 🙂

As a result I have been trying to up my protein content and have been adding this dish as a side dish in the evening . Whether you are training or not, You will want to make these beans, – a bit like mexican refried beans but nicer in my opinion, full of flavour, spicy, bubbling, and you can make them as hot as you like. Delicious straight from the oven with some tortilla chips as a party starter, with chicken or the next day reheated with eggs.

spicy beans with poached eggs

Spicy baked beans – serves 3-4 as a side
2 cans of beans of choice (please, don’t use Baked Tomato beans)…
1/2 medium Onion finely chopped
1/4 cup Sour Cream or Creme fraiche
2 tbsp chopped Jalapenos or 1 small chilli chopped finely
4 oz Grated Sharp Cheddar Cheese
3 Tablespoons tomato salsa or finely chopped tomato which has been deseeded
Some Tabasco sauce and salt and pepper to taste

Oven at 180C
Drain beans and lightly mash
Add all other ingredients, stirring to combine.
Spread into an ovenproof baking dish and bake for 20 to 30 minutes until hot and bubbly.
Serve as a dip or on the side with some mexican style chicken.
Any leftovers are delicious reheated and served with poached eggs the next day.

spicy beans

Union Square Cafe Spicy Nuts

Anyone lucky enough to spend time in New York might have had a visit to Union Square Cafe. I’ve been lucky enough to be there a few times including an enforced 2 weeks stay during the Volcano episode two years ago. I was quite upset at being stuck there for so long but I hear that my friends and family were finding it hard to feel any sympathy for me – forced to spend time in New York on your own with the city at your disposal… understandable I suppose. This nut recipe is based on the nuts that Union square cafe serve if you are having a cocktail while waiting for a table. I recommend omitting the cocktail unless it’s a very special night!.. The original recipe uses quite a bit of sugar in place of the honey but the honey works just as well in my opinion. The nuts are great snack option with protein, good fats, minerals and vitamins. Low and slow is the best way to roast the nuts to preserve the best of them so not too hot.

Union Square Café Spicy Nuts
– This would serve a good few people as an appetizer with drinks or reduce the quantities and make for a delicious snack during the day.

500gr assorted unsalted nuts including cashews, brazil nuts, hazelnuts, walnuts, pecans and whole unpeeled almonds.
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons Maldon salt
1 tablespoon butter melted
1 tsp honey
2 heaped tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh rosemary

Preheat oven to 150C
Toss the nuts and spread out on a baking sheet
Toast for about 15 – 20 minutes in the oven until they become light golden brown
In a large bowl combine the rosemary, cayenne, honey, salt and melted butter
Thoroughly toss the nuts in the spiced butter and serve warm.


Gluten Free Spicy Seed Bread

Gluten Free Spicy Bread
My quest for decent gluten free baked goods continues and I was really pleased with how this tasted. It did not rise as much as I anticipated but even so stayed nice and soft, a lovely crumb outside and the spices and fruit are really lovely. I made a sauce vierge gently heating olive oil with some crushed coriander seeds and the bread is lovely dipped into it or just with some butter. … a bowl of soup is all you need and it’s a lovely filling meal.

Makes 1 500gr loaf
5 oz gluten free flour white mix
2 oz polenta
3 oz chickpea flour
2 tsp fast action dried yeast
1 tsp salt
1 tsp caster sugar
1 tbsp black onion seeds
1 tbsp cumin seeds
2 tsp ground coriander
¼ tsp dried chilli flakes
2 oz dried mango or apricots chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
7 fl oz hand hot water

Heat oven to 200C
Place flours, yeast, salt, sugar, spices and dried fruit in a bowl and stir to combine
Mix the oil and water in a separate bowl, add to the dry ingredients and combine to form a stiff dough
Spoon into a greased tin, cover with a clean damp tea towel and leave in a warm place to rise almost to the top of the tin
Place in your preheated oven and cook for 20 – 25 minutes until firm to the touch
Tip out of the tin and onto the wire rack…. lovely!

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