Honey Mustard Roasted Vegetables (4)

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Fall/Winter veg. are great roasted. My combination of vegetables avoids being too sweet but you can swap in more or less any veg. you want to.

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.

6 oz. carrots – peeled and cut into bite-size pieces

6 oz. beetroot  – peeled and cut into bite-size pieces

6 oz. parsnip – peeled and cut into bite-size pieces

6 oz. butternut squash – peeled and cut into bite-size peices

6 oz. small new potatoes – leave skin on and halve

2 tbsp. olive oil – seasoned with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 tbsp. honey

1 tbsp. Dijon mustard

Place all the veg. in a large, plastic zip loc bag with the oil and salt and pepper and shake bag until veg. are evenly coated.

Place in a large roasting tin and spread the veg. out.

Cook for 40 minutes at 400 degrees then turn the oven up to 450 degrees and cook for a further 20 minutes. Turn veg. with a spatula every 15 minutes to ensure even roasting.

Mix honey and mustard in a large mixing bowl, add the roasted vegetable and toss well.

 

 

 

A Verdant Salad (4)

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This is a lovely, colorful, healthy salad and you can take a big pan of boiling water and use the same pan to cook all the vegetables one after the other. You really have to be in the kitchen for this recipe to keep an eye on the veggies as they want to be ‘al dente’. Serve with vinaigrette of your choice or mayonnaise.

4 oz baby asparagus -cut the bottom ends off

4 oz French green beans (the thin ones) – topped and tailed

4 oz yellow waxed beans – topped and tailed

4 oz snowpeas/mangetout

8 baby potatoes

2 eggs

1/2 can of hearts of palm – chopped into pieces

4 anchovies – chopped into pieces (optional)

Place asparagus into boiling water and cook for 3 minutes, remove from pan and place on paper towel to cool and absorb any water.

Repeat with green beans, waxed beans and snowpeas – cooking them one after the other.

Place potatoes and eggs in the boiling water and cook for 10 minutes.

Arrange veg. on a platter with the hard-boiled eggs (cut into 1/8ths) and hearts of palm.

Scatter pieces of anchovies over the veg.

 

Herby Hummus

This is really moreish. You can, of course, serve it as a dip with chips or veggies, but I served it as part of a main course by placing slices of lemon juice-poached chicken breast on top of it.

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When I make hummus the most annoying part of it is stirring the separated Tahini until smooth. This time I placed the whole can of Tahini in the food processor and once it was thoroughly mixed I placed the whole lot back in the can and measured out the amount I needed.

1/4 cup of smooth Tahini (see above)

Juice of 1 lemon

2 cloves of garlic – roughly chopped

1/2 cup of chopped parsley (I used Italian flat parsley as it has a smoother texture)

1/2 cup chopped cilantro

1/2 teasp. cumin

salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 can of chickpeas – drained

2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

4 tbsp. boiling water

Add the ingredients to a food processor one by one in the order given above. When you get to the chickpeas add them a tablespoon at time and then drizzle the oil and water in. This gives the mixture time to get well blended.

Sweet Potato Stuffed with Fruity Chicken (4)

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Ground chicken, prunes and apricots make an interesting mix and the sweetness goes well with the sweet potato and the addition of a dollop of mango chutney on top. You could do this with an ordinary potato too, but a sweet potato really goes well with the gentle sweetness of the dried fruits. The sweet potatoes will need to go in the oven 40 minutes or so before you start preparing the chicken mixture.

1 tbsp. canola oil, seasoned with salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 medium onion – finely chopped

2 cloves of garlic – grated

1 pound of ground/minced chicken

6 dried prunes – chopped

8 dried apricots – chopped

1 cup of chicken broth/stock (add more if necessary later on in cooking)

4 sweet potatoes – washed

Heat oil in skillet/frying pan and when sizzling add onion and cook until just browning.

Add garlic and cook for a few minutes.

Add ground chicken and let it brown, then add the prunes, apricots and broth.

Bring to a boil, then simmer for 20 minutes.

Place sweet potatoes in oven at 350 degrees  F/170 degrees C and cook for an hour.

 

A Great Little Salad (4)

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I chose a salad like this for lunch the other day and it was so healthy (I immediately felt fitter after the first mouthful!) and tasty that I had to try it at home. Omit chicken and you have a great vegetarian/vegan salad.

Take some crispy lettuce and line a serving bowl with it.

Top it with the following, arranged however you like:

Poach a chicken breast, let cool, and cut into bite-size pieces

Take a red pepper, de-seed and chop into little pieces.

Hard boil a couple of eggs and, when cool, cut into 1/8ths.

1 x can of black beans, rinsed and drained

Handful of dried cranberries

Handful of cashew nuts – roughly chopped

Drizzle over some balsamic vinaigrette made by combining 1/3rd cup of extra virgin olive oil and 3 tbsp. balsamic vinegar whisked together.