Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Sweet chili sauce (Slimming World friendly)

I love sweet chili sauce and although shop bought is not very high in syns this sauce makes it very low in fact it's practically negligible per portion. The beauty of making it yourself is you can also control the heat if you love chilis then put more in if you aren't too keen on lots of heat just use one or two and if you like it very mild then use just one or two but take the seeds out as well as that makes it milder. I don't like to use aspartame based sweeteners as I don't feel they are very good for you so use stevia or splenda but use what you like.

Sweet chili sauce

2-6 fresh red chilis (trim end off and remove seeds if liked)
2 cloves garlic
250ml cider vinegar
100ml water
2 tsp cornflour
4 tbsp powdered sweetener
1 tsp salt

Place the garlic and chilis in a food processor and blitz just for a couple of seconds you don't want a puree just for the chilis and garlic to be finely chopped. Add to a saucepan along with the cider vinegar and water and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to simmer and simmer for about five minutes. Mix the cornflour with a little cold water in a small dish and whisk well until smooth then add to the saucepan whisking well and continue to cook for a few more minutes until slightly thickened. Add the salt and sweetner and cook for another minute or two. Have a taste and see if you need more sweetener or salt.

Makes approximately 250ml keeps in the fridge for a couple of weeks and is 3 syns for the total amount so is approximately 1/4 syn per tablespoon  serving. 

Wednesday, 7 February 2018

Beef Strogonoff (Slimming World friendly)

I love strogonoff but it is usually high in syns and fat but this version is Slimming World friendly. It is based on the one in Tom Kerridges new book 'Lose weight for good' but I thought I could make his recipe lower in syns but keeping all the flavour. I made this with beef but you can use pork and for my taster in class the other night I made a mushroom version which is vegetarian but if you wanted to make it vegan just use a thick soy yogurt in place of the greek yogurt at the end and of course ensure your stock is vegan friendly. 

Beef Strogonoff 

1 large onion (finely sliced) 
3 cloves garlic (crushed ) 
1 beef stock cube or stockpot
400ml beef stock (made from a cube or stockpot)  
2 tsp sweet smoked paprika 
1 tbsp tomato puree 
250g chestnut mushrooms (sliced) 
1 tbsp dijon mustard
3 thin cut frying steaks (all visible fat removed) 
2 tbsp fat free greek yogurt
low calorie spray oil 
salt and pepper 

Spray a large deep frying pan or wok with the spray oil and add the onion, Fry gently over a low heat until soft, Stir in the garlic and cook for a few more minutes. Add the stock cube or stockpot, paprika and tomato puree and cook for a few more minutes stirring well add a splash of water if it starts to stick. Add the beef stock, mushrooms and mustard. Bring to the boil then reduce to a simmer and let it simmer for 10-15 minutes until reduced and slightly thickened. 

Meanwhile spray the thin steaks with oil and season with salt and pepper and fry in a separate pan for a few minutes each side then put to one side to rest while you finish the sauce.  

Take the sauce off the heat (this is important or it will curdle) and gently stir in the yogurt until well mixed, Cut the steaks into strips and add to the pan. Taste to see if you need anymore seasoning. 

Serves 4 and is Syn free 

Wednesday, 24 January 2018

Easy salmon fishcakes (Slimming World friendly)

This is such a simple recipe takes just minutes to make, I was given the recipe from a patient of mines relative who said she heard it's the recipe they use for the fishcakes in the London restaurant The Ivy I can't confirm or deny this but all I know is they are really tasty,

You use small amount of tomato ketchup in this but split into portions it is negligible for syns but I do have a syn free ketchup recipe on the blog too just look for it in the search box on the right hand side about half way down.

 I made a Slimming World friendly sweet chili sauce to serve with these and I'll post that soon.

Easy salmon fishcakes

350g cooked salmon
350g cold mashed potato
1 tbsp tomato ketchup
1 tsp mustard
1 tbsp chopped parsley (if liked)
low calorie spray oil

Put the potato, mustard, ketchup and parsley into a bowl and then break up the salmon and mix everything well together. You don't want it too smooth it's good to have some texture to the mixture.

The easiest way I found to shape the fishcakes was to line an empty (clean!) tuna can with clingfilm then place the mixture into this then you can just tip it out onto a baking tray lined with a piece of baking parchment (greaseproof) and repeat until all the mixture is used up. You can of course just shape them by hand if you prefer. 

Spray the fishcakes with the spray oil and bake in the oven Gas 6/200/400 for 20-30 minutes

Makes 6-8 depending on how you shape them and are syn free

Friday, 19 January 2018

Winter coleslaw (Slimming World friendly)

During the Winter months it's not always so easy to have so much speed food when you don't fancy salad, I make this to take to work with my lunch or in the evening as a side dish with my evening meal. I keep it simple only using three different vegetables but you can vary it how you like if you don't like red cabbage try white cabbage, You could add spring onions or beetroot if you like or even chopped apple. Using a bottled ready made dressing makes it even easier to make. It's simple to prepare and keeps for up to 5 days in the fridge.

Winter Coleslaw

1/2 red cabbage (core removed and sliced )
1 red onion (peeled and sliced thinly)
2 large carrots (peeled and grated)
1/2 bottle of any fat free vinaigrette (check it's syn free)

Place everything in a large bowl and mix well, (It's easiest to do this with your hands) then cover and keep in the fridge.

Syn free

Saturday, 30 December 2017

Turkey curry (Slimming World friendly)

I love turkey curry made with the leftovers of the Christmas turkey, I know it always makes me think of Bridget Jones Mum turkey curry buffet but for me it's a great way of using leftover turkey. I'm not keen on turkey sandwiches and this recipe means if you really want to get right back on it then this is syn free. 

It's a really simple recipe I love it as it is but if you prefer a creamier style curry you can add some fat free Greek style natural yogurt at the end but make sure you take it off the heat first or it might curdle. 

Turkey Curry

1-2lbs leftover turkey (skin removed cut into chunks) 
2 large onions (peeled and cut into chunks) 
1 tin chopped tomatoes 
2-3 tbsp curry powder ( mild or hot depending how you like it) 
2 cloves crushed garlic
1 tbsp grated fresh ginger (or use frozen or from a jar)
1 pint chicken stock (from a cube or stockpot is fine) 
2 tsp salt 
low calorie spray oil

Spray a large pan or a wok with some of the spray oil and add the onions, Fry over a lowish heat until they start to soften, Add the garlic and ginger and fry for a few more minutes. Next add the curry powder and keep frying if it starts to stick add a little of the chicken stock. 

Add the chicken stock, tinned tomatoes and the turkey, Stir well and bring to a simmer. Simmer for about 20-30 minutes until the sauce has reduced and become thicker. Add the salt and stir well then taste in case you might need a little more. 

Syn free 

Happy New Year!!

Thursday, 28 December 2017

Bubble and squeak (Slimming World friendly)

This is a Boxing Day tradition in my house it's a fab tasty way to use up your leftover veg and potatoes from Christmas Day but it's very good any time of the year. A friend of mine said it was always their Monday night dinner to use up the leftovers after a Sunday roast.

I have been known to cook extra veg and potatoes just to be able to make this the next day. I'm sorry quantities aren't exact but it depends what you have left over. You need more or less equal veg to potatoes and you need mainly green veg such as cabbage, peas, sprouts but I also put in some leftover roasted carrots and parsnips as well.

It's hardly a recipe but my method is here ...

Bubble & Squeak

Leftover vegetables
Leftover potatoes
salt and pepper
low calorie spray oil

I find the easiest way to mash them is to put them in a roasting pan so you have plenty of space, Mash the veg and potatoes together well I use a potato masher but you can use a fork too just make sure everything is well mashed and mixed. Season with some salt and pepper while mashing.

Spray a small frying pan with the spray oil and place a few spoonfuls of the mixture in so when pushed down to fill the pan you have a layer about 5cm thick. Fry over a medium heat for 5-10 minutes then try and peek underneath hopefully there will be a nice brown crust developed.

Tip out onto a plate then respray the pan and slide it back into the frying pan to make a crust on the other side.

I like to serve topped with fried or poached eggs.

Syn free as long as your veg and potatoes weren't roasted in oil xx

Wednesday, 20 December 2017

Christmas popcorn (Slimming World friendly)

Christmas popcorn (slimming world friendly)

I love finding recipes that I can adapt to make them slimming world friendly. My niece told me about this she saw it on Kirstie Allsop crafty Christmas. (Thanks Naomi :) Popcorn popped with no oil is quite low in syns only 5 syns per 25g and it weighs very light.

I popped the popcorn in the microwave in a plain brown paper bag just put a couple of tablespoons of the corn kernels in the paper bag and roll the top down a little way then microwave for just one minute , You will hear it popping in there and then after a minute you can check the corn has popped. I weighed the popcorn as I went and for this recipe used 50 grams of popped corn which made 8 portions of this popcorn. be very careful not to overcook as burnt popcorn is horrible :(

Christmas Popcorn 

50g popped popcorn
4 tbsp mincemeat

Place the popcorn in a bowl and mix in the mincemeat . It's best to do this with your hands and mix it all really well so the popcorn is well coated.

Spread the popcorn on a large baking tray and bake it at gas 5/ 375/190 for 5 minutes then check it, If its very lightly brown it is done if not pop back in for another minute or two. Leave to cool then break up.

I bagged it up in measurements of one cup and this made it just over 2 syns per portion. I took it to my class tonight for taster night and it went down very well. I may make a bowl of this to put out as a snack on Christmas Day too.

Have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!! Xxx