Friday, October 15, 2010

Delicious Chicken & Cashews with Noodles

Using the TMX to stir fry was a bit scary.  I was worried I'd end up with a mush of cooked vegies.  So, I watched carefully with this one, but didn't pay attention to times.    Also, when it came to cooking the chicken,  I...errrr... chickened out.  It was stirring slowly around in there and I suddenly thought it was going to end up an uncooked mush (not much faith in the TMX?) so I tipped it out to a hot fry pan.

The golden syrup came out in a great big blob when the lid just popped off... so I'd estimated the quantity.  Teaches me to buy sauce bottles from $2 shops!!  When it comes to a noodle dish, I really do miss that smooth texture of the sauces on the noodles.  I hoped I could replicate this and I think I got it!!

Ingredients:
  • 500g chicken breast
  • 1-2 tabs canola oil
  • 1-2 garlic cloves - crushed
  • 1 carrot - finely sliced - matchsticks
  • 2 sticks celery, finely sliced
  • bamboo shoots - sliced into matchsticks
  • snow peas - sliced roughly diagonally
  • 100-125g raw cashews
  • 2 spring onions - finely sliced diagonally
  • 1 tab corn flour
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tabs golden syrup
  • 1 tsp sea salt
Method:
  • Pre-heat TMX on Varoma temp for 2 minutes on Speed 1
  • Add garlic and set to Varoma temp for  7 minutes, reverse speed 1, then after 1 minute, while it continues to cook...
  • Add carrot, celery, bamboo shoot through hole in lid
  • Meanwhile, in fry pan, brown chicken
  • Add cashews to TMX through hole as it continues to stir fry
  • Combine corn flour, water, golden syrup and salt in a small bowl and have it ready to go in
  • Add cooked chicken through hole
  • Add Snow Peas, Spring Onions as it continues to cook in TMX and, finally add corn flour mixture
  • Allow to cook a further 3-5 minutes to get really well combined
  • Serve over wide rice noodles (with no colours, preservatives etc)
Verdict:
WowWowWow!!!! Even I had seconds.  The Breatharian didn't have any,  but that's par for the course.  Ms D & C absolutely inhaled it...  Ms C again declaring it the 'best dinner ever'!  Honestly, she's going to have to tone it down a tad.  There's just no in between with this one.  :)  Mr frillypants also loved it.  I only missed out on thirds because I was stuck under a feeding baby.  For this meal I also put the bowl on the table with it all mixed in and everyone got to serve their own seconds and thirds.  They enjoyed doing this and meant they didn't need to wait while I fed Mr JA.

Tweeks:
No tweeks...  it was scrummy yummy!!!  Obviously you could make it with whatever veg is in the fridge,  but I think it makes it more special to use a different 'set' of veg for a different 'cuisine'.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Butternut Pumpkin Lentil Spaghetti

Or:  "Lentil Pasta - Best Ever (2)"

I was making lentil pasta, opened the pantry and discovered I didn't have the ingredients I wanted.  No worries!   It's lentil pasta!  It's very forgiving.  After searching the pantry and fridge I decided to have a go at a pumpkin slant.  Should be tasty?  Yep!  It was.

Ingredients
  • 2 cans Lentils - drained and rinsed (keep separate)  (this time I used dried brown and red lentils,  so soaked them a while first.)
  • 1 can borlotti beans - drained and rinsed
  • 1 can chickpeas - drained and rinsed
  • oil or butter
  • 1-2 cloves garlic
  • l/2 - 1 leek - cut into chunks
  • 1 medium carrot - roughly chopped into chunks
  • 100g or so of Butternut Pumpkin - peeled and roughly cut into large chunks
  • zuccini - peeled& roughly chopped
  • 1/4 - 1/8 cabbage
  • tsp salt
  • tsp citric acid
  • 1 - 2 tabs brown sugar
Method
  • put in garic and leek into TMX and give it a quick whizz to chop
  • scrape down and add butter
  • Saute on 100 deg for 2 minutes on speed 1.
  • Add carrot, pumpkin and zucchini and pulverise for about 5-8 seconds on speed 7
  • Add beans (retain some beans to add whole later) and cabbage
  • A couple of whizzes on turbo will see it done
  • Add about 500-800g water
  • Add salt, citric acid and brown sugar and lentils and whole beans
  • Cook on 100 degrees for 30 minutes on Reverse Speed 1-2 (check it for water during the process and add a little if necessary)  (20 minutes if you're using canned lentils)
  • Check and see if it's ready,  if it's still tasting a bit 'cabbage-y' or raw, then keep cooking for perhaps another 20 minutes or so.
  • Serve over spaghetti...  
Verdict:
 The kids came home with Mr Frillypants from swimming lessons and asked what was for dinner.  When I said 'Lentil Pasta' I was met with "Yes!!".  It always surprises me that this is one of their favourite meals.  I mean...  it's just so disgustingly healthy!!!! Anyone would think I'd just said we were having pizza... from the Pizza Shop... with that reaction.

Tweeks:
I have tweeked the 'best ever' recipe to get this one.  Who knows,  I may tweek this again.  But this was damn tasty.  I'm wondering if I could dare add ricotta cheese,  but that can have a texture to it that can be off putting for little kids.  So, maybe I shouldn't risk it?  Thoughts?

This has zucchini and butternut pumpkin, which are both moderate in Salicylates.  If you're sensitive or have had some more Sals recently,  maybe leave out the zucchini.  

Friday, October 1, 2010

Chicken in Maple Marinade

I'm pretty proud if this one,  because I made it all up myself...  and it worked!!!  Hooray!!! 

Meanwhile, I thought I had ordered the Fed Up dvd produced by Sue Dengate, but what arrived was the book!  I was peeeved at myself and thought with all the discussions I've had over the last nearly 2 years, I knew A LOT about it.  Anyway, faced with the book I decided to read it and... just... wow!  Even if I did know quite a bit,  I sure understand a whole lot more now.  And that's soooo important.

So, I've ordered and received the dvd now and I look forward to watching and then sharing that.  Its blurb says it is a great tool for convincing schools, dads and in-laws.  Wow!  They really know their audience.  hee hee.  My next mission is to bring this message to Ms C & D's school, where they keep giving Ms C food!!!  It's not bad food necessarily.  It's just bad for Ms C!  And if I don't know about it, I can't make adjustments at home to compensate.  Wish me luck as I try to string some words together in the Principal's office.  (gulp)  And if you have ever done this,  any words of wisdom would be great.

INGREDIENTS:
  • Chicken breast, enough for your brood, cut into largish pieces
  • Maple syrup (not maple flavoured)
  • Pear ketchup
  • Salt
  • Garlic, crushed
  • Leek, sliced
METHOD:
  • Saute leek, allow to cool
  • I started with about 1/2 cup of syrup and ketchup and then increased until I felt I had enough to cover the meat I had  
  • Add garlic, leek and salt
  • Cover chicken and allow to marinade for at least 30 minutes
  • Cook in covered fry pan on gentle heat so you don't burn the sauce
  • Serve with mashed potato and steamed veg
Verdict:  Well,  Ms C has a habit of overstating things, but I was pretty chuffed when she declared "This is the best dinner ever!!"  Everyone else liked it so this is one for the family recipe book.