Category Archives: Main Course

You will find a number of delicious Main Course recipes here suitable for whether you are Vegetarian, Vegan or Gluten Free.

There are a range of Main Course recipes here including quick mid-week meals and easy slow cooker dishes. Whatever your time restraints you will find a tasty recipe here! 

As well as recipes to fit any time pressures, you will also find recipes for any season. Whether you want a warming and comforting meal for the colder weather, or a light and fresh meal for the summer; you’ll find it all here! 

Popular Main Course Recipes:
Bibimbap
Chicken & Ham Hock Filo Pie 
Vegan Lentil Chilli 
Vegetable & Red Lentil Curry

Vegetable Fried Rice

A quick, easy & delicious recipe perfect for a midweek meal. This Vegetable Fried Rice takes no time to cook & can be adapted to which vegetables you have.

A quick and easy recipe 

This Vegetable Fried Rice is so quick and easy to make. The vegetables take a few minutes to prepare but shortcuts can always be made. I like to dice my vegetables quite small and neatly, but if you don’t have the patience for this you can leave them a bit chunkier. Bear in mind that they will take a couple of minutes longer to cook. Also if you cut the vegetables to different sizes, don’t add them all to the pan at the same time. Add the harder vegetables that will take longer to cook a few minutes before the softer quicker cooking vegetables. 

Aside from cutting vegetables, this recipe is pretty much adding things to a pan and stirring. It is cooked in no time at all and with minimal effort. 

You could make this more of a Chinese feast and make my Baked Sweet & Sour Chicken and Chicken Chow Mein to serve with the Vegetable Fried Rice. 

Can I add different vegetables or meat?

Yes to both of these. I tend to always have peppers, carrots and broccoli in my fridge so these are my go-to for this recipe. You can use courgettes, mushrooms, cabbage, peas; the list goes on! You can also add as many vegetables as you like, my recipe is just a guide. 

With meat, I would recommend adding cooked meat. It is a great recipe to use up leftovers from either a roast or any other meal. Chicken, beef or pork would work particularly well. I added some leftover Korean Belly Pork which was incredibly delicious. If you did want to add meat, I would add it to the pan with a small amount of oil and let it heat through and crisp up slightly. I would then remove it from the pan and set aside and add it back to the pan with the rice. 

Why is this Vegetable Rice Different?

There are lots of fried rice recipes out there, so what makes this Vegetable Fried Rice different? My twist comes from the chilli garlic sauce. I am a bit obsessed with it at the moment! You might have seen it in my Pork & Green Bean Stir Fry. It is by the well known brand from Lee Kum Kee. You can buy it in larger supermarkets as well as Asian supermarkets. It is quite spicy so add a small amount at first. The recipe below says to use half a teaspoon which should be mild to medium depending on your tastes. Feel free to add more if you like it spicy. 

Why use cold cooked rice?

All fried rice recipes require cold cooked rice. The sign of a good fried rice is seeing the individual grains of rice in the finished dish. If you were to use warm rice, it might turn out mushy or soggy. 

If you are using leftover rice, make sure you refrigerate it quickly after cooking it. Also make sure it is piping hot and fully reheated before serving. I know a lot of people feel a bit nervous about using leftover rice so I tend to use a packet of microwave rice. This is because I very rarely have leftover rice and also because it is so incredibly easy. It also means you don’t have to think ahead and make sure you have cooked rice the night before and you can make Vegetable Fried Rice whenever the fancy takes you.

5 from 3 votes
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Vegetable Fried Rice

A quick, easy & delicious recipe perfect for a midweek meal. This Vegetable Fried Rice takes no time to cook & can be adapted to which vegetables you have.

Course Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine Chinese
Keyword Vegetables, Eggs, Fried Rice
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Servings 2
Calories 352 kcal
Author Curly

Ingredients

  • 1 small carrot peeled & diced
  • ½ pepper diced
  • 3 spring onions sliced
  • 100 g tenderstem broccoli sliced
  • tbsp vegetable oil
  • 250 g cooked rice cold
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ tsp chilli garlic sauce
  • 1 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp shaoxing rice wine
  • ¼ tsp dark soy sauce

Instructions

  1. Start by preparing all of your vegetables, try to cut them to a similar size. Set aside

  2. Add ½ tablespoon of oil to large pan or wok on a medium/high heat. Whisk the eggs and add them to the oil. Stir continuously until the eggs are cooked. Remove from the pan and set aside

  3. Add another tablespoon of oil to the pan over a high heat and add the vegetables. Cook for up to 5 minutes stirring nearly all the time

  4. Add the cooked rice and the chilli garlic sauce. Stir through making sure you get rid of any lumps of rice. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring continuously

  5. Add the soy sauces and shaoxing and stir through for a minute or so before serving

Recipe Notes

Make sure you use cold cooked rice. 

Nutritional information is given as a guide only and my vary.

Nutrition Facts
Vegetable Fried Rice
Amount Per Serving
Calories 352 Calories from Fat 135
% Daily Value*
Fat 15g23%
Saturated Fat 10g63%
Cholesterol 164mg55%
Sodium 649mg28%
Potassium 305mg9%
Carbohydrates 41g14%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 3g3%
Protein 11g22%
Vitamin A 4704IU94%
Vitamin C 29mg35%
Calcium 58mg6%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Sweet Potato & Chickpea Curry (Vegan)

This Sweet Potato & Chickpea Curry is deliciously comforting & creamy making it the perfect mild curry. It is vegan & gluten free making it a real crowd-pleaser.

Curries are easier than you may think!

I am not very adventurous at all when I visit Indian restaurants. I always order chicken tikka masala which is why I came up with my Skinny Chicken Tikka. But in recent years, I have started to become more adventurous with my Indian cooking at home. Since finding out I like coconut milk and ground coriander, the world has been my oyster! With a few basic Indian spices in your cupboard, you really can’t go wrong. 

One of our favourite recipes in my house is my Vegetable & Red Lentil Curry. That is another vegan recipe but uses a spice paste for ease. I wanted to make another delicious curry completely from scratch that was just as easy. 

Indian food is ideal for Vegetarian and Vegan recipes

Ignoring the fact that large numbers of people living in India are vegetarian; the cuisine is perfect for vegetarian and vegan meals. As someone that isn’t vegan, I think that when you are creating meat free meals for people that typically eat meat they need to have lots of flavour. This is especially the case for people that may not be as enthusiastic to try meat free meals. My thinking is that if a meal is packed full of flavour, people will hopefully not miss the meat! 

Although this Sweet Potato & Chickpea Curry is mild, it has lots of flavour. Not only is it vegetarian and vegan, it is also gluten free and dairy free. This makes it a great meal which should appeal to a large number of people with various dietary requirements. 

A mild but flavoursome curry 

This Sweet Potato & Chickpea Curry is quite a mild curry. I chose to keep it mild so that it would suit most people’s tastes. It also makes it easier for people to add spice if they would like to. If you do like a bit of heat, you could either add chilli powder or fresh chillies. I would add this with the rest of the spices and then you can check the spice level and add more if needed before you add the cavolo nero. 

Cavolo nero probably isn’t the most traditionally used ingredient in Indian cooking, but it works really well. I’m not really a fan of spinach which is more commonly used which is why I used cavolo nero. You can use spinach or kale if you would rather not use cavolo nero.  

5 from 7 votes
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Sweet Potato & Chickpea Curry (Vegan)

This Sweet Potato & Chickpea Curry is deliciously comforting & creamy making it the perfect mild curry. It is vegan & gluten free making it a real crowd-pleaser.

Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Keyword Vegetarian, Curry, Vegan, Sweet potato, Chickpeas
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 410 kcal
Author Curly

Ingredients

  • ½ tbsp sunflower oil
  • 1 onion diced
  • ½ tbsp ginger paste
  • 1 cloves garlic paste
  • 800 g sweet potato (2 large) peeled and diced
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 2 tbsp garam masala
  • 1 ½ tsp sea salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • 1 ½ tbsp tomato puree
  • 500 g passata
  • 400 g tin of chickpeas drained & rinsed
  • 400 ml tin of light coconut milk
  • 300 ml vegetable stock
  • 100 g cavolo nero

To finish

  • fresh coriander

Instructions

  1. Heat a large pan over a medium heat before adding the oil. When warm, add the onion and allow to soften without colouring for a couple of minutes

  2. Add the ginger and garlic paste to the onions and allow to cook for minute or two, stirring frequently

  3. Add the diced sweet potato, all of the spices and tomato puree. Mix to coat the sweet potatoes in all of the spices

  4. Pour in the passata, drained chickpeas, coconut milk and stock. Stir thoroughly and then turn the heat down to low so that the curry is barely bubbling. Cover and leave to cook for 30 minutes, stirring every so often

  5. After 30 minutes, remove the lid and check the sweet potato is cooked by inserting the point of a knife. If the knife doesn't go in easily, let the curry cook for another 5-10 minutes

  6. Wash the cavolo nero and remove the middle stalk. Slice and add to the pan. Stir through and leave to cook for 10 minutes without the lid on

  7. Serve scattered with fresh coriander with rice, poppadoms or naan bread

Recipe Notes

Nutritional information is given as a guide only and my vary.

Nutrition Facts
Sweet Potato & Chickpea Curry (Vegan)
Amount Per Serving
Calories 410 Calories from Fat 27
% Daily Value*
Fat 3g5%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Sodium 1323mg58%
Potassium 1332mg38%
Carbohydrates 58g19%
Fiber 11g46%
Sugar 17g19%
Protein 6g12%
Vitamin A 29215IU584%
Vitamin C 21mg25%
Calcium 105mg11%
Iron 5mg28%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Pork & Green Bean Stir Fry

Incredibly tasty and so quick to make. This Pork & Green Bean Stir Fry is the perfect midweek meal that you can have on the table in 20 minutes. 

Pork & Green Bean Stir Fry time saving tips 

I love Asian cooking but sometimes the prep can take longer than cooking the whole meal. Like my Bibimbap; it’s delicious but I definitely wouldn’t call it an quick and easy meal because there is quite a bit of chopping and individual cooking involved. 

This Pork & Green Bean Stir Fry is definitely the opposite. I have used pork mince because there is no chopping involved. Straight to wok noodles make this quicker and easier and it also means you only need to use one pan. The final time saving tip is to use jars of garlic and ginger paste. I really don’t like mincing garlic and ginger so I use these the majority of the time. But for speedy meals like this they really are a godsend. 

Easy adaptations 

As with a lot of recipes, this Pork & Green Bean Stir fry can be adapted to your tastes. If you would like to make this gluten free, use gluten free soy sauce and swap the noodles for rice noodles. If you want to make this vegetarian or vegan, you could use tofu instead of the pork mince. If you’re not a fan of noodles, leave them out and serve it over rice. 

How spicy do you like your food?

The spiciness is what most people may want to tweak with this recipe. The essential ingredient for this is the garlic chilli sauce. I use garlic chilli sauce from Lee Kum Kee which is a very well known brand. You can buy it in larger supermarkets as well as Asian supermarkets. It is quite spicy so don’t get too carried away! I have used one teaspoon in the recipe below which I would say is mild moving slightly to medium spiced.

If you’re making this for children or people that are more sensitive to spice, I would recommend adding ¼ teaspoon at a time. Personally I wouldn’t leave it out altogether because it does add a lovely flavour to the dish. If on the other hand you love a bit of spice, add as much as you like. Two teaspoons should provide you with a lovely heat. 

5 from 4 votes
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Pork & Green Bean Stir Fry

Incredibly tasty and so quick to make. This Pork & Green Bean Stir Fry is the perfect midweek meal that you can have on the table in 20 minutes. 

Course Main Course
Cuisine Chinese
Keyword Pork, Noodles, Green beans
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Servings 2
Calories 683 kcal
Author Curly

Ingredients

  • 250 g pork mince (5% fat)
  • 150 g green beans
  • 4 spring onions
  • 2 tsp garlic paste
  • 2 tsp ginger paste
  • 1 tsp garlic chilli sauce
  • 300 g straight to wok medium noodles (2 x 150g packets)
  • 1 tbsp sunflower oil

For the sauce

  • 2 tbsp shaohsing rice wine
  • 2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • pinch caster sugar
  • 5 g basil leaves (small handful)

Instructions

  1. Slice the spring onions on the diagonal. Cut the ends off the green beans and cut them into three. Set to one side

  2. Measure out the ingredients for the sauce and set aside

  3. Heat ½ tbsp of oil in a wok or large pan over a high heat. Once the oil is hot, add the pork mince and break it up so there aren't any large lumps. Cook for 2-3 minutes or until the pork is browned, stirring often. Remove it from the pan

  4. Heat ½ tbsp of oil in the same pan. When the oil is hot add the spring onions, green beans, minced garlic, ginger. Stir continuously for 2-3 minutes

  5. Add the browned pork mince back to the pan and then add the chilli paste

  6. Stir for a minute before adding in the noodles. Break them up and then add the sauce. Stir for 1-2 minutes before tearing in the basil leaves

  7. Stir through the basil and serve

Recipe Notes

Nutritional information is given as a guide only.

Nutrition Facts
Pork & Green Bean Stir Fry
Amount Per Serving
Calories 683 Calories from Fat 306
% Daily Value*
Fat 34g52%
Saturated Fat 11g69%
Cholesterol 90mg30%
Sodium 1086mg47%
Potassium 641mg18%
Carbohydrates 10g3%
Fiber 3g13%
Sugar 3g3%
Protein 25g50%
Vitamin A 889IU18%
Vitamin C 17mg21%
Calcium 72mg7%
Iron 3mg17%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Chicken & Chorizo Filo Pie

This Chicken & Chorizo Filo Pie is packed full of tasty flavours and is healthier than you may think! The subtle heat from the paprika and chorizo add a lovely warmth to this delicious pie. 

Chicken & Chorizo Filo Pie

A delicious flavour combination 

Chicken and chorizo is such a great flavour combination. Chicken is a meat that calls out for flavours to be added to it. One of my most popular recipes is my Slow Cooker Chicken & Chorizo Stew so lots of other people clearly like the combination too! 

This Chicken & Chorizo Filo Pie is a based on my Chicken & Ham Hock Filo Pie. My lovely friend that makes a lot of my recipes told me she was actually substituting the ham hock for chorizo. So I decided to take that and make a new recipe. 

A tasty and healthier pie

We’d all like to eat a tasty pie lined with pasty from time to time. But all of that pastry isn’t the healthiest of meals. This Chicken & Chorizo Filo Pie is a healthier way of enjoying a delicious pie. The filo pastry is much lighter than other pastries but still offers the crispness we all look for. 

It’s not just the pastry that is healthier! The sauce is deliciously creamy but there is no cream in sight. It only takes a few minutes to make and is really simple. My one tip would be to not rush it and make sure all of the stock has been absorbed before adding more. If you don’t, the worst that will happen is your sauce may be a little lumpy but I doubt you will be able to tell in the finished dish. 

Is this Chicken & Chorizo Filo Pie spicy?

This pie is mild enough to suit most people’s tastes. Usually chorizo comes in two varieties, normal and spicy. You can choose which you would like depending on whether you would like to add a little more spice to your pie. 

The paprika in the recipe adds more of a warmth to the pie than spice. You can use regular or spiced paprika, whichever you prefer. I used a heaped teaspoon of paprika but you can easily add more or less to suit your family’s tastes. 

Can I use leftover cooked chicken?

You can definitely use leftover cooked chicken for this recipe. My Chicken & Ham Hock Filo Pie is actually based on using cooked chicken. I would add around 200g of shredded cooked chicken at the stage that you re-add the vegetables and chorizo to the sauce. It would be a great way to use leftover chicken from your Sunday roast. 

However if you do want to use fresh chicken, you can use thigh or breast. I prefer to use thighs because I think they have more flavour and stay moist during cooking. You can definitely use chicken breasts if you would prefer. 

5 from 3 votes
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Chicken & Chorizo Filo Pie

This Chicken & Chorizo Filo Pie is packed full of tasty flavours and is healthier than you may think! The subtle heat from the paprika and chorizo add a lovely warmth to this delicious pie. 

Course Main Course
Cuisine British
Keyword Chicken, Chorizo, Pie
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours 30 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 469 kcal
Author Curly

Ingredients

  • 240 g chicken thighs (2 large thighs) boneless & skinless
  • 100 g chorizo
  • 1 leek sliced
  • 1 red pepper sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • ½ tsp sunflower oil
  • 1 ½ tbsp olive oil
  • 3 tbsp plain flour
  • 250 ml chicken stock
  • 250 ml semi-skimmed milk
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • pinch black pepper
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp thyme leaves
  • 5 sheets filo pastry
  • spray oil

Instructions

  1. Remove any fat from the chicken thighs and cut them into large chunks. Set to one side

  2. Slice the red pepper, and wash the leeks and slice. Set aside

  3. Remove the casing from the chorizo, cut in half and then slice

  4. Heat a large frying pan over a medium heat and add the chorizo. Cook for 2-3 minutes stirring frequently

  5. Remove the chorizo from the pan and set aside. Add the chicken thighs into the same pan and cook for 5 minutes until brown

  6. Add the pepper, leek and garlic to the pan and cook for 5 minutes until soft. Add ½ tsp oil to help prevent it sticking to the pan

  7. Remove all of the ingredients from the pan and set aside while you make the sauce

  8. Add the olive oil to the same pan on a medium low heat. Add the flour and stir to make a paste

  9. Gradually add the chicken stock a small amount at a time making sure the chicken stock is absorbed before adding more

  10. Once all of the chicken stock has been absorbed, add the milk a little at a time. Once all of the milk has been added, leave the sauce to thicken for 2-3 minutes

  11. Preheat the oven to 170°C (fan assisted, 190°C non fan)

  12. When the sauce has thickened, add the chicken, vegetables and chorizo to the pan. Stir to make sure everything is coated

  13. Add the paprika and thyme leaves and stir through

  14. Pour the pie filling into an oven proof dish

  15. Unwrap the filo pastry and crumple each sheet on top of the pie filling making sure there aren't any gaps. Spray thoroughly with oil and bake in the oven for 25 - 30 minutes until the pastry is golden brown

Recipe Notes

I use a baking dish approximately 20x20cm and 4cm deep.

Nutritional information is given as a guide only.

Nutrition Facts
Chicken & Chorizo Filo Pie
Amount Per Serving
Calories 469 Calories from Fat 261
% Daily Value*
Fat 29g45%
Saturated Fat 8g50%
Cholesterol 88mg29%
Sodium 886mg39%
Potassium 509mg15%
Carbohydrates 28g9%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 6g7%
Protein 22g44%
Vitamin A 1696IU34%
Vitamin C 41mg50%
Calcium 98mg10%
Iron 3mg17%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Slow Cooker Cuban Pork

Tender, citrus flavoured pork; if you haven’t tried Slow Cooker Cuban Pork before you’ll want to now! With this one recipe there are so many ways to enjoy it and make the most of any leftovers. 

   

What is Slow Cooker Cuban Pork?

I hadn’t heard of Cuban Pork until I stumbled across a recipe on Pinterest years ago. As with lots of pins on Pinterest, I forgot about it until recently. I did some research and found that the common ingredients in Cuban Pork is citrus juice; usually lime and orange juice and cumin. 

I love cooking large joints of meat in the slow cooker because it helps keep them really tender. It is also an incredibly easy way to cook them because as long as you have enough liquid so it doesn’t dry out, you can really leave it alone. 

Who doesn’t love easy cooking?

Sometimes you do want to be hands on in the kitchen and make something that needs concentration. And then other times you don’t! This Slow Cooker Cuban Pork couldn’t be easier because you essentially chuck it all in the slow cooker in the morning and it’s ready by dinner time!

To make things even easier, I kept the fat and rind on the pork shoulder. It is much easier to remove from the meat once it has cooked because it will easily pull away. By leaving the fat on, it also helps keep the meat extra moist in my opinion. If when you buy you pork it doesn’t have the fat and rind on it, that obviously isn’t a problem!

After you have removed the fat, the most taxing thing you will have to do for this recipe is shred the pork. By this time the pork is so tender it is incredibly easy to shred. 

How to serve Slow Cooker Cuban Pork 

One of my favourite things about this recipe is its versatility. Cuban Pork is traditionally served with rice and black beans with some of the cooking juices drizzled over. The way I served initially was in a bread roll along with my Mexican Sweetcorn Salad. If you would like to serve it like this, I would recommend allowing the juices to drain off if you don’t want them dripping down your arm! A simple way to do this would be to heat some of the pork in a dry frying pan for a couple of minutes. 

When making this Slow Cooker Cuban Pork, my plan was to use it for multiple recipes. The quantities in this recipe would feed 6-8 people. But you really want to make sure you have some leftovers to make my Cuban Pork Sandwich and Quick Pulled Pork Pizza. Look out for these recipes coming in the next few weeks! 

5 from 3 votes
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Slow Cooker Cuban Pork

Tender, citrus flavoured pork; if you haven't tried Slow Cooker Cuban Pork before you'll want to now! With this one recipe there are so many ways to enjoy it and make the most of any leftovers. 

Course Main Course
Cuisine Cuban
Keyword Slow Cooker, Pork, Crock pot, Cuban
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 8 hours
Total Time 8 hours 15 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 248 kcal
Author Curly

Ingredients

  • 1.4 kg pork shoulder
  • 200 ml orange juice freshly squeezed
  • 100 ml lime juice freshly squeezed
  • 6 cloves garlic peeled
  • 1 onion cut in half
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tbsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • pinch black pepper
  • ¼ tsp chilli flakes
  • 1 dried bay leaf
  • 1 tbsp cornflour

Instructions

  1. Remove any string from the pork and place it in the slow cooker. Add all of the ingredients apart from the cornflour to a jug and whisk them together before adding them to the slow cooker

  2. Cook on low for 7½ hours before removing the pork from the slow cooker. Remove the fat from the pork and shred using two forks

  3. Add the shredded pork back to the slow cooker. If you would like to thicken the juices, mix the cornflour in a glass with some of the juices. Add back to the slow cooker and cook for a further 30 minutes

Recipe Notes

Nutritional information is given as a guide only. 

Nutrition Facts
Slow Cooker Cuban Pork
Amount Per Serving
Calories 248 Calories from Fat 90
% Daily Value*
Fat 10g15%
Saturated Fat 4g25%
Cholesterol 95mg32%
Sodium 306mg13%
Potassium 616mg18%
Carbohydrates 9g3%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 4g4%
Protein 29g58%
Vitamin A 100IU2%
Vitamin C 25mg30%
Calcium 39mg4%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Mauritian Chicken Curry

Bring a bit of Mauritius into your house with my tasty Mauritian Chicken Curry. Delicious and simple to make; cooking from scratch doesn’t have to be complicated.                       

A trip to Mauritius 

Until a few months ago, I used to work in travel. A couple of years ago I was lucky enough to go on a work trip to Mauritius. These work trips were as great as they sound. We’d get to go abroad for around a week to experience a country and visit hotels so we could make better recommendations for our clients. They heavily involved being wined and dined and a fair amount of time to experience the hotel relax.  

As part of this trip to Mauritius, we had some free time to explore the capital, Port Louis. I obviously found myself at the food and spices market. When I was buying some vanilla pods, the trader gave me a piece of paper with a couple of recipes on. One of them was for a Mauritian Curry. 

What took me so long to make my own version of a Mauritian Chicken Curry?

I loved the idea of making my own version of an authentic Mauritian curry, but there was one ingredient stopping me. The recipe that I was given used roasted coconut. I don’t like coconut. It wasn’t until I made a delicious beef rendang a week or so ago that used coconut milk that made me realise with the rest of the spices you couldn’t pick out a specific coconut taste. 

I decided that the next recipe I developed had to be a Mauritian Chicken Curry that I had been scared of for the last two years! Instead of using roasted coconut I would just use coconut milk instead. 

Mauritius’ unique and mixed food culture 

Mauritius was colonised by the Dutch, French and British which saw an influx of slaves and immigrants from Africa, India and the Far East. All of these influences have given Mauritius a unique and delicious cuisine. 

I was able to get the basics from the recipe I was given; chicken, curry powder, cinnamon and chilli. But it wasn’t written in the clearest English. This gave me the perfect opportunity to get creative and come up with my own interpretation. 

How spicy do you want your Mauritian Chicken Curry?

This recipe is deliberately easy to adapt the spice level. If you would prefer to keep it mild, leave out the red chilli altogether. If you like a bit of spice add up to two chillies. Obviously chillies vary in heat but generally speaking the smaller chilli the hotter it will be. 

What to serve with this Mauritian Chicken Curry 

I like to serve this with  some simple Basmati rice. It would also be delicious with some chapatis. I can also personally recommend accompanying this with an ice cold beer. I would be rude not to would it! 

5 from 2 votes
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Mauritian Chicken Curry

Bring a bit of Mauritius into your house with my tasty Mauritian Chicken Curry. Delicious and simple to make; cooking from scratch doesn't have to be complicated.

Course Main Course
Cuisine International, Mauritian
Keyword Chicken, Curry, Mauritian
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 4
Calories 410 kcal
Author Curly

Ingredients

  • 500 g chicken thighs boneless & skin removed
  • 1 onion
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 inch ginger peeled
  • 1 red chilli
  • ½ tbsp sunflower oil
  • 1 tbsp garam masala powder
  • ½ tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tbsp mild curry powder
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • 400 g tinned tomatoes
  • 400 ml light coconut milk
  • 3 Kaffir lime leaves
  • 1 stick cinnamon
  • 2 tomatoes large
  • 250 ml water

Instructions

  1. Remove any fat from the chicken thighs and cut them into large chunks. Set to one side

  2. Add the onion, garlic, ginger and chilli to a food processor and mix until finely chopped

  3. Heat the oil in a large pan before adding the onion, garlic, ginger and chilli. Cook for 2-3 minutes until slightly softened

  4. Add the garam masala, mild chilli powder and ground coriander and stir until completely mixed. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring often

  5. Add the chopped chicken and cook for 5 minutes until the chicken is opaque

  6. Add the chopped fresh tomatoes, tinned tomatoes, light coconut milk and water. Add the cinnamon stick and Kaffir lime leaves before bringing to the boil

  7. Cook uncovered for 30 minutes until the sauce has thickened. Make sure you stir every ten minutes or so to prevent sticking

  8. Remove the cinnamon stick and Kaffir lime leaves before serving with rice

Recipe Notes

Nutritional information is given as a guide only.

Nutrition Facts
Mauritian Chicken Curry
Amount Per Serving
Calories 410 Calories from Fat 261
% Daily Value*
Fat 29g45%
Saturated Fat 12g75%
Cholesterol 123mg41%
Sodium 479mg21%
Potassium 487mg14%
Carbohydrates 12g4%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 3g3%
Protein 22g44%
Vitamin A 715IU14%
Vitamin C 27.3mg33%
Calcium 35mg4%
Iron 1.2mg7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Chicken & Basil Pasta

Quick, easy and tasty. This Chicken & Basil Pasta is the perfect midweek meal that is deliciously creamy but healthier than you might think. 

My take on a recipe 

One of my favourite things about cooking is being able to adapt recipes. When I was at school, I would make a chicken and basil pasta that used double cream and dried basil. I think it was a Nigel Slater recipe but I could be wrong. It is a delicious recipe, but double cream isn’t an everyday ingredient in my opinion. I love cream, but I prefer to look for healthier alternatives.  

Go-to creamy pasta sauce 

Low fat cream cheese is my go-to base for creamy pasta sauces. It provides a deliciously creamy sauce but with a fraction of the calories that you might find in other sauces. It is also a great ingredient to keep in your fridge. It has quite a long expiry date on it so I tend to always have at least one low fat and one full fat cream cheese in the fridge. The low fat is so I can whip up a tasty pasta sauce and the full fat is for cream cheese frosting. 

So quick and easy

When I say this Chicken & Basil Pasta is quick and easy I really mean it. You can make this meal in twenty minutes which is perfect for a midweek dinner. If you have any leftovers it is great for lunch the next day too. 

Although I love fresh basil, if you don’t have any you can use dried or frozen pasta. This would make this recipe even easier to make! 

Do I have to use linguine? 

Not at all. I used linguine because I like it, you can use whatever pasta you like or happen to have in the cupboard. This Chicken & Basil Pasta can easily be made gluten free by using gluten free pasta and flour. 

5 from 4 votes
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Chicken & Basil Pasta

Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian, British
Keyword Chicken, Pasta, Basil
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 2
Calories 595 kcal
Author Curly

Ingredients

  • 150 g pasta
  • 200 g chicken breast (1 breast)
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • pinch black pepper
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 100 g low fat cream cheese
  • 40 ml semi skimmed milk
  • 1 tbsp plain flour
  • 30 g Parmesan finely grated
  • 10-15 basil leaves

Instructions

  1. Cook your pasta in salted boiling water as per the packet's instructions 

  2. Cut the chicken into fine slices 

  3. Add the olive oil to a pan on a medium high heat. Once the oil is hot, add the chicken and stir until it is golden brown 

  4. Turn the heat to low and add the salt, pepper and garlic 

  5. In a separate bowl, mix together the low fat cream cheese, milk and flour 

  6. Once the pasta is cooked but still al dente (with a slight bite), add it to the chicken. Make sure you reserve the water the pasta has cooked in 

  7. Add the cream cheese mixture and stir through. Add a splash of pasta water to loosen the sauce to your preference 

  8. Add the Parmesan and tear in the basil. Stir through and serve immediately 

Nutrition Facts
Chicken & Basil Pasta
Amount Per Serving
Calories 595 Calories from Fat 153
% Daily Value*
Fat 17g26%
Saturated Fat 8g50%
Cholesterol 102mg34%
Sodium 1186mg52%
Potassium 688mg20%
Carbohydrates 64g21%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 6g7%
Protein 41g82%
Vitamin A 530IU11%
Vitamin C 1.2mg1%
Calcium 291mg29%
Iron 1.6mg9%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Easy Vegan Bolognese

Easy Vegan Bolognese is simple, healthy and really tasty! It is such an easy recipe to make and packed with nutrients it is definitely worth trying. 

If you are a regular to my blog, you’ll know that one of my aims this year was to eat less meat. So far I have made Vegan Lentil Chilli, Roasted Halloumi & Za’atar Tray Bake and Sweetcorn & Cavolo Nero Quesadillas. These have been popular which has lead me to come up with more veggie recipes.

Why not use Quorn?

Adapting a bolognese seemed like an obvious choice for me. As I have said previously, I’m not too keen on using meat replacements like Quorn. I know a lot of people use and love Quorn, but not using it lets me come up with more creative ways than swapping the mince for Quorn. Also I’m sure there are quite a few lovely recipes already out there using Quorn for bolognese. 

Using lentils instead of meat

As in my Vegan Lentil Chilli and Vegetarian Lentil Curry, I have used lentils in this Easy Vegan Bolognese. I am new to using lentils but have been really loving them! They help bulk out a dish and make it more filling. I think they also create a slightly meaty texture which helps if you are feeding non vegetarians!

In previous recipes I’ve used red split lentils which worked really well. This was my first recipe using green lentils. I wanted to use the green lentils for this Easy Vegan Bolognese because they hold their shape better than red lentils. 

Can I cook this in a slow cooker?

Yes this Easy Vegan Bolognese would work really well in a slow cooker. I haven’t tested it yet, but I would add all of the ingredients apart from the lentils. I’d cook it for 2 hours on high before adding the lentils and cooking for a further 2-3 hours. I would also reduce the amount of water to 200ml. 

Is this Easy Vegan Bolognese healthy?

The good news is yes! I didn’t set out to make this recipe, vegan or super healthy. But I am pleased that it ended up that way! Lentils contain lots of protein as well as fibre and other nutrients you can’t find in meat. On top of that, this Easy Vegan Bolognese is really low in calories too! 

4.88 from 8 votes
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Easy Vegan Bolognese

Easy Vegan Bolognese is simple, healthy and really tasty! It is such an easy recipe to make and packed with nutrients it is definitely worth trying. 

Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian, Mediterranean
Keyword Vegetarian, Vegan, Bolognaise
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 45 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 126 kcal
Author Curly

Ingredients

  • ½ tbsp sunflower oil
  • 1 onion diced
  • 3 carrots diced
  • 2 sticks of celery diced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • tbsp tomato puree
  • 400g tin chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tsp mixed herbs
  • ½ tsp dried basil
  • ½ tsp dried rosemary
  • ½ tsp mustard powder
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • tsp Bouillon powder
  • 2 dried bay leaves
  • 390g tin green lentils
  • 300 ml water

Instructions

  1. Add the oil to a pan over medium heat. Add the diced onions, carrot, celery, garlic and tomato puree and allow to soften for 10 minutes 

  2. Add the tinned tomatoes, dried herbs, mustard powder, salt, pepper, Bouillon powder and bay leaves. Stir to mix through completely 

  3. Add 200ml of water and stir through. Leave to cook partially covered with a lid for 30 mins on a low heat, stirring occasionally 

  4. Drain and rinse the lentils in cold water before adding them to the pan

  5. Add another 100ml water before partially covering with a lid and leaving to cook on a low heat for another hour. Stir every so often and add a little more water if needed 

Recipe Notes

When using tinned tomatoes, I like to fill the empty tin with water to add to the recipe. It catches the last of the tomato juice. 

If at any point it starts looking too dry, add a splash more water.

If it looks too watery towards the end of the cooking time, remove the lid and turn up the heat slightly. 

Nutritional information is given as a guide only. 

Nutrition Facts
Easy Vegan Bolognese
Amount Per Serving
Calories 126 Calories from Fat 27
% Daily Value*
Fat 3g5%
Sodium 770mg33%
Potassium 1332mg38%
Carbohydrates 71g24%
Fiber 32g133%
Sugar 8g9%
Protein 27g54%
Vitamin A 7830IU157%
Vitamin C 19.5mg24%
Calcium 110mg11%
Iron 8.7mg48%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Roasted Halloumi & Za’atar Tray Bake

Delicious roasted vegetables subtly seasoned and topped with halloumi. This Roasted Halloumi & Za’atar Tray Bake is so easy to make and will soon become a family favourite! 

 
As I have mentioned previously, Mr Curly and I are trying to eat less meat this year. So far I have made a Vegan Lentil Chilli and revamped my Vegetable & Red Lentil Curry. Both of these went down really well which gave me the confidence to create more veggie recipes!

Just because a recipe is vegetarian does not mean it shouldn’t be exciting and full of flavour. I love tray bakes because of their simplicity and how easy they are to adapt. I already have a Sausage & Mustard Tray Bake recipe and when I thought of what I could replace the sausages with, halloumi instantly came to mind. Who doesn’t like halloumi?! It is a favourite cheese with so many people that it was a no brainer to use. 

The za’atar and smoked paprika drizzle provides a really subtle flavour to the tray bake. if you haven’t heard of it before, za’atar is a blend of Middle Eastern herbs and spices typically including oregano, thyme, sesame seeds and sumac. I didn’t want to over power the halloumi because it is quite a mild flavoured cheese. I also didn’t want to mask the flavours of the tasty veggies! 

You can use whatever vegetables you like in this Roasted Halloumi & Za’atar Tray Bake. It is also a great way to use up veggies that you might have lurking in your fridge. Roasting vegetables very forgiving and crisps them up nicely so you will never tell if they were slightly wrinkly! 

I like my halloumi to me quite well cooked. If I’m grilling it I like to get dark grill marks because I love the flavour and crispiness it gives to the cheese. If you prefer it paler and softer, cook it for less time. 

You can serve the Roasted Halloumi & Za’atar Tray Bake as it is or I like to serve it with some steamed broccoli. 

5 from 8 votes
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Roasted Halloumi & Za'atar Tray Bake

Delicious roasted vegetables subtlyseasoned and topped with halloumi. This Roasted Halloumi & Za'atar Tray Bake is so easy to make and will soon become a family favourite! 

Course Main Course
Cuisine Mediterranean, British
Keyword Vegetarian, Roasted Vegetables, Halloumi, Za'atar
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 523 kcal
Author Curly

Ingredients

  • 4 potatoes
  • 1 sweet potato
  • 3 carrots peeled
  • 2 parsnips peeled
  • 1 pepper
  • 1 courgette
  • 1 red onion
  • 225 g halloumi

For the drizzle

  • 1 tbsp za'atar
  • ½ tbsp smoked paprika
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • twist black pepper
  • tbsp water if needed

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 180ºC (fan assisted, 200ºC non fan)

  2. Cut the vegetables into similar sized chunks and add them to a roasting tray

  3. Mix together all of the drizzle ingredients together in a bowl. Add the water if it needs loosening slightly to be pour able

  4. Pour the drizzle over all of the vegetables and thoroughly mix them until they are completely covered. Roast in the oven for 10 minutes before turning and cooking for a further 10 minutes 

  5. Slice the halloumi into roughly ½ cm slices. Lay them on top of the vegetables and roast for a further 15-20 minutes until the halloumi is cooked to your liking

Nutrition Facts
Roasted Halloumi & Za'atar Tray Bake
Amount Per Serving
Calories 523 Calories from Fat 225
% Daily Value*
Fat 25g38%
Saturated Fat 11g69%
Sodium 1341mg58%
Potassium 1614mg46%
Carbohydrates 57g19%
Fiber 13g54%
Sugar 10g11%
Protein 20g40%
Vitamin A 12820IU256%
Vitamin C 52.2mg63%
Calcium 712mg71%
Iron 9.4mg52%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Chorizo & Cavolo Nero Hash

This Chorizo & Cavolo Nero Hash has quickly become a favourite and regular recipe in my house! It is so delicious and perfect at anytime of day. 

As I have mentioned in previous posts, I have been ordering organic vegetable boxes for a couple of months now. The company I order them from let you be extremely flexible with what you have in your box. They provide you with a set box each week but you can swap any vegetables you don’t fancy for one you do. This is great, but after a few weeks it meant I was playing it a bit safe. 

So a few weeks ago I decided to make as few swaps as possible and try some new vegetables. Cavolo Nero was available that week and although I had heard of it; I hadn’t tried it before. The recipes I saw when I had a quick look were hearty stews and soups which all looked delicious. Instead, I decided to tweak my Mexican Eggs recipe to come up with this Chorizo & Cavolo Nero Hash.  

Since I first made this Chorizo & Cavolo Nero Hash  a month or so ago, we have had it every week since. We absolutely love it! It is a great mid-week meal because it is quick to make. The only step that takes a few minutes is chopping the potatoes. That is because I finely dice them which means they cook quicker. If you would prefer you can cut them into bigger pieces and then just cook them for a bit longer. 

Cavolo nero is also known as black kale and Italian kale to name a few. It is packed full of nutrients and iron as well as looking quite pretty in my opinion! I really recommend that you give it a try, but if you decide it’s not for you, you could swap it for normal kale or spinach in this recipe. 

You could easily have this Chorizo & Cavolo Nero Hash for brunch, lunch or dinner. It is very versatile and also easy to cook for a lot of people. It also is great for leftovers. I quite like to make more than we will want to eat and have it for lunch the next day (minus the egg!). 

5 from 8 votes
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Chorizo & Cavolo Nero Hash

This Chorizo & Cavolo Nero Hash has quickly become a favourite and regular recipe in my house! It is so delicious and perfect at anytime of day. 

Course Main Course
Cuisine British, International
Keyword Chorizo, Cavolo Nero, Potato Hash
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 2
Calories 746 kcal
Author Curly

Ingredients

  • 600 g potatoes unpeeled
  • 120 g pepper (1 large pepper)
  • 50 g cavolo nero
  • 100 g chorizo
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 2 cloves garlic minced

To finish

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tbsp sunflower oil

Instructions

  1. Prepare the cavolo nero by washing thoroughly and removing the central stem. Then slice it into strips. Leave to one side

  2. Cut the potatoes into a small dice and boil them for 5-7 minutes until you stick the point of a sharp knife in them

  3. While the potatoes are cooking, dice the pepper into a similar size as the potatoes and heat ½ tbsp olive oil in a pan over a medium heat

  4. Add the peppers to the oil and cook for a couple of minutes until softened. When the potatoes are cooked, drain them and add them to the pan with the peppers. Add the other ½ tbsp olive oil if needed

  5. Remove the skin from the chorizo and dice. Add to the pan along with the cavolo nero, salt and garlic

  6. Leave to cook for 2-3 minutes until the cavolo nero is wilted. In the mean time fry the eggs in the sunflower oil  

  7. Serve by spooning the hash into a bowl and topping with a fried egg 

Recipe Notes

Make sure you wash the cavolo nero thoroughly.

Nutritional information is given as a guide only. 

Nutrition Facts
Chorizo & Cavolo Nero Hash
Amount Per Serving
Calories 746 Calories from Fat 351
% Daily Value*
Fat 39g60%
Saturated Fat 11g69%
Cholesterol 207mg69%
Sodium 1885mg82%
Potassium 2296mg66%
Carbohydrates 77g26%
Fiber 22g92%
Protein 31g62%
Vitamin A 565IU11%
Vitamin C 35.1mg43%
Calcium 386mg39%
Iron 17.1mg95%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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