Thursday 26 June 2014

Chorizo and egg bake

Today's dinner was protein packed, super quick and very filling. It totally hit the spot. I absolutely love Spanish smoked chorizo and always have a pack of it in my store cupboard. It reminds me of Goan sausage curry, which I am absolutely crazy about. I might attempt it some time with the Spanish chorizo, but today it contributed to a simple egg bake. If you don't eat pork you can use any other sausage, just add some paprika and some extra garlic to it. If you don't eat meat at all then make it with lots of vegetables - it tastes really good too. 
Since it was just the 2 of us, there is some left over, so tomorrow's breakfast is sorted :)

Serves 3-4

140 gms smoked chorizo sausage chopped

5 eggs
100 gms grated cheddar cheese (I used low fat cheddar)
1 onion finely chopped
4 cloves of garlic finely chopped
1 red chilli chopped (You can use green chilli)
Salt and pepper to taste
Steamed vegetables as a side (optional)


Preheat the oven to 170 C

In a bowl, whisk the eggs, add the grated cheese, onion, chorizo, garlic and chopped chilli. Season with salt and pepper.

Transfer to a lightly greased baking dish and bake for 20 minutes.

Serve with some steamed vegetables or salad. We had it with steamed broccoli, seasoned with some garlic salt. :)

Tuesday 24 June 2014

Mushroom, roasted tomato and garlic pasta

Today I left work a bit late and was all set to order a takeaway. But I was pleasantly surprised on reaching home - Salil was in the kitchen making pasta. This wasn't the surprising bit (he does like to cook and is very good at it). The surprising bit was that he was actually writing down the recipe for the blog! :). 

The pasta was perfect, the roasted garlic bits tasted brilliant and I absolutely loved the simplicity of the dish.

Serves 2-3

100 gms uncooked spaghetti
250 gms cherry tomatoes halved
4 garlic cloves peeled and sliced
250 gms chestnut mushrooms
3 spring onions chopped (keep the white and green separate)
1/2 tsp chilli flakes
1/2 tsp pepper
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp fresh rosemary chopped
Parmesan to garnish (optional)
Salt to taste


Preheat the oven to 180 C. 

In a baking dish , toss the tomatoes, garlic, 1 tbsp olive oil, rosemary and chilli flakes. Season with salt and pepper. Mix well and bake for 25 minutes

Meanwhile, cook the pasta in some salted water. Once cooked drain and keep aside. 

Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a pan and cook the white part of the spring onions for about 1-2 minutes. Toss in the mushrooms and cook for 8 - 10 minutes or until the mushrooms have softened. 

Add the cooked pasta and the roasted tomatoes and garlic and toss everything together. Garnish with the rest of the spring onions (the green bit)

Serve with some parmesan on top (optional)

p.s The ingredients and the method were perfectly written down...I've trained Salil well ;)


Wednesday 18 June 2014

Cottage pie with Quorn mince

Another simple weekday dinner. I love cottage pie - it is so comforting!

I have become a fan of frozen Quorn mince lately and always have it stored in my freezer. There are so many vegetarian dishes you can make using it as a substitute to meat - chilli con carne, spaghetti bolognese, lasagne, to name a few. 

I already had the rest of the ingredients, so this did not require any previous planning at all. I also used a food processor to chop the onion and carrots...much simpler and way quicker.

Some of my friends have been asking me to post a vegetarian recipe. This one's for you guys! :)

Serves 3-4


750 gms of potatoes, peeled and chopped
25 gms butter
3 tbsp of milk
1 tbsp dried parsley
400 gms Quorn mince
1 medium onion finely chopped
1 bay leaf
2 carrots finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, crushed
2 green chillies finely chopped
2 tsp cumin powder
1 tbsp fresh rosemary, chopped
400 gms can of chopped tomatoes  
200 ml water
1 veg stock cube (You can use chicken or beef if you wish)
1 egg, beaten 
Salt and pepper to taste


Add the stock cube to 200 ml of boiling water and keep aside to dissolve.

Bring a saucepan of water to a boil. Add the potatoes and cook until tender - around  15 to 20 minutes. Drain the potatoes and mash till smooth. Add the butter, parsley and milk, mixing thoroughly. (Add more milk if required)

Preheat the oven to 200 C. In a large frying pan, heat a tablespoon of oil. Add the onion, carrots, garlic, green chillies and the bay leaf and fry for 4-5 minutes on medium heat. Add the frozen Quorn mince  and the cumin powder and cook for further 5 minutes. Then add in the tomatoes, chopped rosemary and stock. Bring to a boil and turn off the heat.

Remove the bay leaf and transfer the Quorn mince to an oven proof dish in a single layer. Add the mashed potatoes on the top, covering the quorn mince and fluff the mash layer with a fork. Lightly brush the surface with a beaten egg. Cook in the oven for 20-25 minutes.  

* You can also add a layer of grated cheese on top of the potatoes. Skip the egg if using cheese.


Tuesday 10 June 2014

Chicken fajitas

Today while coming back from work I passed Chiquitos (a Mexican restaurant) and I thought why not make fajitas tonight. I had all the ingredients I needed, except the tortilla wraps which I picked up from Sainsburys on my way. On the train home, I was thinking and planning of ways to make it quick and simple while keeping it healthy. 

The salsa and guacamole are quick fixes and super easy. I haven't used any cream in the guacamole and instead of sour cream I used fat free fromage frais.  With a bit of multi tasking, and help from the hubby, a fabulous dinner was ready in no time! 

Serves 2-3


For the fajitas

2 skinless chicken breast fillets
1 tbp oil
1 tsp smoked paprika
1/4 tsp cumin powder
zest of 1 lime
Juice of 1/2 a lime
About 1 pepper (I used 1/4 of a red, yellow and green pepper each)
Fat free fromage frais (you can use sour cream) - 
Grated cheddar cheese
4  tortillas

For the salsa

1/2 a small onion, finely chopped
A handful of cherry tomatoes
1 green chilli finely chopped
1 tsp lime juice
Salt and pepper
Few sprigs of coriander

For the guacamole

2 ripe avocados
1 tsp lime juice
1 tsp finely chopped onion
Salt and pepper to taste
A few sprigs of coriander
A pinch of paprika or chilli powder


Cut the chicken into thin strips. In a bowl, add the oil, a tsp of smoked paprika, a tsp of cumin powder, lime zest and juice of half a lime. Mix well. Add the chicken and coat well. Keep aside to marinate while you prep the rest of the ingredients.

Prepare the salsa - chop the cherry tomatoes into quarters, add the finely chopped green chilli, finely chopped onion, lime juice and the coriander. Season with some pepper. Add salt just before serving.

Prepare the guacamole - Halve and stone the avocado and scoop it out of its skin into a bowl. Add the finely chopped onion, lime juice and coriander. Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle over a pinch of paprika.

Cook the chicken and peppers - Heat a grill pan on high heat. De-seed the peppers and cut them into strips.

Once the pan has heated, add the chicken and cook for 3-4 minutes, turning frequently. Toss in the peppers and cook for a further 2-3 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through. Season with salt and pepper.

Heat up the tortillas in the microwave or in the oven (as instructed on the pack) 

Assemble everything on a platter. Layer up the chicken and peppers along with the salsa, guacamole and cheese on the tortilla. Roll it up (if you can)!

Have a fantastic supper!

Monday 2 June 2014

Spicy tandoori chicken leg

Just the mere mention of tandoori chicken makes my mouth water.  It had been so long since I had a tandoori chicken leg! The chicken tikka however is quite a staple - at restaurants or home-made. So this time I had to give the tandoori chicken leg a go.  It is such a simple dish yet packed with so much flavour; wonder why I don't make this more often! 

Instead of using ready-made masala, I made the marinade from scratch. However, tandoori masala powder is easily available in super markets. All you need to do is mix some of the tandoori  malasa or chicken tikka masala with yoghurt and some oil or butter and marinade the chicken in this. Usually restaurants add red food colouring, but I used kashmiri chilli powder which gave it the lovely red colour.


2 whole skinless chicken legs 

For the marinade

1/4 cup thick yoghurt
2 tsp ginger garlic paste
1 & 1/2 tbsp kashmiri chilli powder (adjust as per taste)
1 tsp dried kasuri methi 
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp oil
1 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp garam masala
salt to taste 


With a knife, score the chicken legs a few times. 

In a large bowl, mix all the marinade ingredients. Give the marinade a quick taste and adjust seasoning if required. Then add the chicken legs and coat them well with the marinade. Leave to marinate overnight if possible or at least 3-4 hours. The longer the better.

Cook on the barbecue or in an oven at 200 C for about 35-40 minutes, turning occasionally, until the chicken is cooked. (Cooking time could vary depending on the size of the chicken legs).

Serve with naan, roti or salad. Since I had the barbecue on, I quickly grilled some cherry tomatoes and mushrooms. 

I would recommend eating the tandoori chicken with your hands and pretend no one's watching. Believe me somehow it just tastes better!

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