Saturday, June 20, 2015

Weekend Cooking: Green Curry Chicken Pie

In my last Weekend Cooking post, I talked about how I find looking through relevant magazines and cook books really helps in getting and keeping my head into the right place for weight loss. Each time I receive a new magazine I spend a long time reading through the recipes and the stories and then go through it again and again. Eventually I will actively choose recipes that I think I want to try. This is one that jumped out pretty quickly from the July/August issue, and just like last week's recipe it was one that I made twice within a few days because it was such a hit. Well, and also because I had all the ingredients on hand and only had to buy an onion to make dinner. In fact, when I had the discussion with the boy to determine what he might like to eat for this week, this was the only thing he asked for again which would make it three times in less than two weeks.

Confession time. Until a few weeks ago I had never made any kind of green curry from scratch. I recently made a recipe from the Symply Too Good to be True cookbooks which I might share another time but having made that I felt that I could try and make this version without too much difficulty. It is actually a pretty easy recipe although preparing the filling does take a little time. The other recipe is probably lower calories but I must confess that I have really enjoyed being able to have some pastry without feeling too guilty.

Green Curry Chicken Pie

1/2 tspn olive oil
1 brown onion, cut into thin wedges
1 tbspn green curry paste or gluten-free curry paste
2 tbspn wholemeal plain flour or gluten-free flour
2 tspn Massel Salt Reduced Chicken Style Stock Powder**
250ml (1 cup) boiling water
80ml (1/3 cup) Trident Light Coconut Milk
2 tbspn skim milk
250g skinless chicken breast fillet, cut into 2cm cubes
200g broccoli, cut into small florets
50g (2 cups) baby spinach
1 sheet 25% reduced-fat puff pastry or gluten-free puff pastry
50g egg, lightly whisked
40g (1 1/2 cups) mixed salad leaves, to serve

**I used the reduced salt chicken stock powder I had in the cupboard

Preheat oven to 210C (fan-forced). Line an oven tray with baking paper. Put a rectangular 750ml (3 cup) ovenproof dish on prepared tray.

Heat oil in a medium non-stick saucepan over a medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, for 7 minutes or until onion begins to soften.  Add curry paste and cook, stirring for 1 minute. Add flour and cook stirring, for 1 minute. Remove pan from heat and gradually whisk in combined stock powder and water until sauce is smooth. Add coconut milk and milk, and whisk to combine.

Return pan to stovetop and cook, stirring over a medium heat for 3-4 minutes or until the mixture thickens and comes to a simmer. Remove pan from heat, Add chicken, broccoli and spinach, and stir to combine. Spoon mixture into the prepared dish.

Lay pasty sheet on a clean surface. Cut 4 x 1 cm thick strips of pastry from the perimeter of the sheet. Brush rim of dish with a little egg and press pastry strips around the rim. Brush with egg. Top with remaining pastry, rolling out slightly, if needed, to fit. Trim edges. Brush with a little egg. Cut a few small slits in the top of the pastry. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until pastry is golden brown.

Serve pie with salad leave.

Serves 2

There is also a suggestion that you could make a fish pie by replacing the chicken with boneless fish fillets and the green curry past with red curry paste. The teenage boy would not be a huge fan but it might be something I might try in future.

I will say that the pie actually looks huge so it isn't like it isn't a generous serving for two.

The first time I made this I stuffed up the pastry so I had some leftovers. Just because I could I made a really quick free-form apple pie using fresh apple. By free-form I mean that thing was messy, messy, messy but it tasted good. This was a hit with the boy, and during the course of the week he made himself another couple of pies. I did laugh though because, when I made it, it was some apple and cinnamon shoved in the middle of some pastry with the uneven sized edges folded in. His pie was beautifully presented with plaited pastry and looked very professional.  Then the second time he made a pie this is what he presented. I would point out that this was all for him though!!

Weekend Cooking is open to anyone who has any kind of food-related post to share: Book (novel, nonfiction) reviews, cookbook reviews, movie reviews, recipes, random thoughts, gadgets, quotations, photographs. If your post is even vaguely foodie, feel free to grab the button and link up anytime over the weekend. You do not have to post on the weekend. For more information, see the welcome post.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Weekend Cooking: Pork Nachos

My quest to find recipes that are healthy, tasty, acceptable to the teenage boy and diabetes friendly continues, and I have to say I think this recipe is a winner!

One of the things that I have noticed in my weight loss journey is that I am more likely to be successful when I am spending time looking through the Diabetic Living magazines that I am subscribed to and the cook books that I have (the ones that focus on weight loss and diabetes only) even if I am not picking recipes to make. It's almost as though it is part of training my brain to think differently. I study the magazines as soon as I receive them and then again and again. Luckily this is a magazine that I do find lots of tasty looking recipes in.

This recipe is one that I found in the May/June issue of the Australian version of Diabetic Living magazine.

I actually cooked this twice in the space of week. The first time was on a Sunday night when I asked a friend and her kids around for dinner at short notice. Everyone liked it but the 3 year old was particularly enthusiastic, even coming back for seconds. Mum was also impressed when I told her how many vegetables there were hidden in it! The second time was at the request of my teenage son. Again, I am not going to tell him how many vegies there actually are in it.

Pork Nachos

1 brown onion, roughly chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 stick celery, roughly chopped
1 zucchini, roughly chopped
1 red capsicum, roughly chopped
1 tspn olive oil
400g Heart Smart pork mince (very lean)
1 tbspn salt-reduced taco seasoning or gluten free taco seasoning
400g can no-added-salt chopped tomatoes
1 tspn Massel chicken style salt reduced stock powder
185 ml (3/4 cup) water
400g can no-added-salt red kidney beans, drained
80g Macro Original Corn Chips**
40g (1/2 cup) reduced-fat grated cheese
1 large tomato, chopped to serve
Coriander leaves to serve
2 tbspsn extra-light sour cream

**I couldn't find this particular brand so I just used ordinary corn chips

Put onion, garlic, celery, zucchini and capsicum in a food processor and process until finely chopped.

Heat oil in a large non-stick frying pan over a medium heat. Add vegetable mixture and cook, stirring occasionally, for 8 minutes or until vegetables soften. Increase heat to high. Add mince and cook, stirring often, breaking up any lumps with a wooden spoon, for 3-4 minutes or until mince is browned.

Add taco seasoning to pan and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add canned tomato, stock powder, and water. Bring to a simmer. Cover and cook for 10 minutes. Add beans and cook, uncovered, for a further 10 minutes or until mixture is thick.

Preheat oven to 180C (fan-forced). Spoon mince mixture into a shallow ovenproof dish. Arrange corn chips on top, pushing slightly into mince. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake for 10 minutes or until cheese melts. Top with tomato and sprinkle with coriander.  Serve with sour cream.

Serves 4.

Weekend Cooking is open to anyone who has any kind of food-related post to share: Book (novel, nonfiction) reviews, cookbook reviews, movie reviews, recipes, random thoughts, gadgets, quotations, photographs. If your post is even vaguely foodie, feel free to grab the button and link up anytime over the weekend. You do not have to post on the weekend. For more information, see the welcome post.


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