Chicken and Bacon Chilli

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This delicious recipe was one that I rustled up after a long day at work one night. It had been a dark, cold Autumn night and I wanted a relatively quick recipe, somewhere between a chilli and stew that would warm me up whilst snuggling up under a blanket.

Yet again I raided my fridge to find a few leftover rashers of bacon and a chicken fillet. Thankfully the other ingredients are staple cupboard items that I knew would partner really well together so I threw them in.

All in all, once I’d fried the ingredients up and left them in the saucepan to simmer, I was sat down to eat within 25 minutes of starting. The addition of rice really filled me up and possibly in the future I would consider using brown rice, as I often think it can add texture to a tomato based recipe.

However, the true beauty of this dish is that you can use up whatever is in your fridge and really enjoy it. I managed to get two very large meals out of this – perfect for freezing and eating on a night when you are in a rush or can’t be bothered to cook.

Ingredients

  • 1 onion
  • Dairy free butter
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 3 rashers bacon
  • Tin kidney beans
  • 400g plum tomatoes
  • Chicken fillets
  • ½ teaspoon Cadbury cocoa powder
  • Drizzle Worcester sauce
  • Splash BBQ sauce
  • 100ml chicken stock
  • Yellow pepper
  • Half mug of Basmati rice
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Coriander
  • Teaspoon mild chilli powder

 

– Heat a chunk of butter and leave to melt. Next fry the bacon until brown

-Add the chicken and cook until golden

– Cook the onion and peppers and stir until soft. Next add the garlic

-Stir in the cocoa powder, chilli powder, kidney beans and tomatoes

– Add the rice and then the stock and mix well

– Stir in the BBQ sauce and Worcester sauce and mix well

– Season well with salt and pepper

– Bring to the boil and then leave to cook on a low heat for 20 minutes

– Serve with coriander

A not so traditional Spaghetti Bolognese

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There’s one recipe that never fails to be met with lots of ‘mmms’ when it’s placed on the dinner table and that is Spaghetti Bolognaise. It’s easy to make and has all of the ingredients you could wish for; hearty meat, a delicious sauce, a sprinkling of cheese and a messy face when you’ve finishing eating.

Now, if you’ve been to Italy then you will know that as a nation we’ve killed the traditional Bolognese recipe. Not only are we using the wrong pasta – a proper Bolognese is partnered with tagliatelle, but we do inexcusable things like add herbs to our recipe. I will hold my hands up and say, I’m guilty of all of these sins!

However, if like myself you are gluten free and living anywhere but London where there is a huge selection of gluten free goodies, you will know how difficult it is to source tagliatelle. It’s one of those rare delicacies that I stock up on when I come across it, usually in farm shops or strangely enough, service stations. I agree that Bolognese with tagliatelle tastes more delicious, the thickness of the pasta soaks up the mince and juices more, but we will have to go on with what we’ve got and let’s face it, I love basil and oregano so they are thrown in to many of my meals for added flavour.

In my recipe, I’ve missed out on some traditional ingredients such as carrots as unfortunately we ate them all with our Sunday roast. But, with a little love and care, a generous glug of wine and some yummy bacon, I can promise you won’t miss them at all.

Little tip: My family go to special measures to obtain David’s Chilli Oil – it really adds depth and flavour to even the blandest of dishes and is perfect for use in chilli’s, spaghetti and curries.

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Ingredients (Serves 2)

  • 400g Steak mince
  • Olive oil
  • 1 onion
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 rashers bacon
  • Sprinkle dried rosemary
  • 1 tsp basil
  • ½ tsp oregano
  • 400g tin plum tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1 beef stock cube
  • 1-2 tsp chilli oil depending on heat (I used David’s Chilli Oil)
  • A good glug of red wine (I just went for it but around 100ml)
  • 1 tsp cooking salt
  • Generous sprinkle of pepper
  • Gluten free spaghetti or tagliatelle
  • Dairy free cheese (I usually use Violife)

 

  • Heat up 1 tsp olive oil in a medium sized saucepan. Chop up the bacon into squares and add to the pan, heating for 10 minutes or until golden
  • Chop up the onion and cook until soft
  • Next, throw in the garlic and rosemary and stir in
  • Add the mince steak and breakdown, stir until browned
  • Add the plum tomatoes, crumble in the beef stock cube and sprinkle in the basil and oregano
  • Add the chilli oil and pour in a good glug of wine
  • Bring to the boil and then leave to simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally and adding seasoning as desired
  • Cook the spaghetti according to packet instructions
  • Grate a handful of cheese
  • Once the sauce is nice and thick, drain the spaghetti and add the bolognaise on top
  • Sprinkle on the cheese and some basil to finish

Buon Appetito!

 

Paprika chicken with mango, avocado and sweet potato in a red wine vinegar and honey dressing

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I’ve never been one to make a boring salad. Some people will rustle together some tomatoes, cucumber and lettuce and call it done, but I like to go to town with a salad and throw in some really simple but delicious ingredients.

I invented this dish after raiding the fridge and wondering what I could put together in under half an hour with leftovers and it’s one of the best salads I’ve ever tasted. The sweetness of the mango and honey, mixed in with the spice of the paprika and the creaminess of the avocado work really well together and it makes for a great weeknight meal when you’re in a rush to get to yoga.

If you fancy adding a few carbs into the mix, slice up a nice, fresh ciabatta and layer on the ingredients for a quick, on the move meal.

 Ingredients

  • Chicken breast or leftover meat
  • 1 – 2 tsp of paprika
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 1 mango
  • 1 red or yellow pepper
  • Half sweet potato
  • Mixed salad leaves
  • Red wine vinegar
  • Honey
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

 

  1. First preheat the oven to 190 degrees Celsius and layer the bottom of a tray with foil
  2. Make slashes on the top of the chicken and place on the tray, sprinkle with 1-2 tsp of paprika depending on personal spice preferences and season with salt and pepper
  3. Chop the sweet potato into chunks and drizzle a generous amount of olive oil onto the whole tray. Place in the oven and cook for 25-30 minutes
  4. Chop the mango into chunks and the avocado and pepper into slices
  5. Meanwhile, layer a plate with the salad leaves and prepare the dressing by adding a tsp of red wine vinegar, honey and olive oil into a mug and mixing well
  6. After 15 minutes into cooking, add the pepper onto the tray
  7. Eight minutes before full cooking time, add the mango and avocado to the tray and drizzle on the dressing to complete
  8. Once the chicken is cooked, take out the tray and add the ingredients to the salad