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Friday, 20 May 2016

Caramelised onions anyone?

20th May 2016
He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has.  Epicetus

Weigh day! I think it's a loss, we shall find out later, but I've done my 7 days of tracking, eaten some lovely meals.  Yesterday I stuffed peppers with the chilli con carne made with quorn and topped with cheese, they were good and only 5sp, and then I had a slice of AnnMaries pie, so that blew 15sp, was delicious though, beans, mash and cheese inside puff pastry.  I still wanted tea later so had a packet of Barenaked noodles with mushrooms and soy sauce for 2sp.  No the noodles aren't as good as real noodles which would set me back a lot more points, for for 1sp a packet they're not bad at all, rinse them off first and they're sound.  I had tried the skinny ones a long time ago and they were horrid, but these were okay, if you were to use them in a recipe with other stuff and sauce, they'd be a great way to save points.
I'm really enjoying the veggie chat in my meetings this week, I'm getting loads of ideas from my members of stuff to try, and it's helping me remember recipes I've tried in the past including this one;

Caramelised Onion and Mushroom Lasagne

8 Smart Points per serving ~ 6 Servings ~ Prep Time:  25 min ~ Cooking Time:  45 min ~ Easy

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 large onion(s), thinly sliced
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 sprig fresh rosemary, finely chopped
100 ml water
2 teaspoon vinegar, balsamic
2 teaspoon muscavado sugar, dark or light
1 pinch salt, and black pepper, freshly ground
5 spray low-fat cooking spray
250 g mushrooms, closed cup, sliced
1 tablespoon butter
3 level tablespoon flour, plain
600 ml skimmed milk
135 g lasagne sheet, (9 sheets)
40 g parmesan cheese, finely grated
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg, ground, optional

Heat olive oil in a large non-stick frying pan over a high heat. Add onions and cook, stirring occasionally for 6-8 minutes until golden brown. Add garlic and rosemary and cook for 1 minute. Stir in water, balsamic vinegar and sugar. Cook until water evaporates – about 1-2 minutes. Tip into a large bowl, season with salt and pepper and set aside.

Coat same frying pan with low fat cooking spray. Place over medium-high heat and add mushrooms. Cook for about 2 minutes until browned, then add to onions, stirring to mix.
Preheat oven to Gas Mark 4/180°C/fan oven 160°C/ 350°F.

To make sauce put butter, flour and milk into a non-stick saucepan, all at once. Heat, stirring constantly with a small whisk until the sauce boils and thickens. Add half the cheese. Season and add nutmeg, if using.

To assemble, spread a thin layer of sauce over the base of a baking dish measuring about 18 x 28cm. Place 3 lasagne sheets on top. Spread with sauce and half the onion mixture. Lay 3 more lasagne sheets on top. Repeat with sauce, onion mixture, final 3 lasagne sheets and remaining sauce. Sprinkle the rest of the cheese evenly over the surface.

Bake for 30-35 minutes until golden brown. Rest for 5-10 minutes before serving.

And this one;

Upside Down Caramelised Onion Tart
Ratings (4)
3 Smart Points per serving ~ Serves 6 ~ Prep time: 20 min ~ Cook time: 30 min ~ Easy

Soft, caramelised onions with just a hint of apple taste terrific in this clever inverted tart.

25 g Butter   
3 large Onion(s), sliced   
1 medium Apple(s), (eating), peeled, cored and sliced   
1 teaspoons Caster Sugar   
2 teaspoons Vinegar, All Types, balsamic or red wine vinegar   
5g Thyme, Fresh, leaves (1 tsp)   
4 sheet(s) (small) Filo Pastry   
5 spray(s) Calorie controlled cooking spray   
1/8 teaspoons (level) Ground Nutmeg   
 4 sprig(s) Thyme, Fresh, to garnish  

Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 6/200°C/fan oven 180°C/400°F.

Melt the butter in a large frying pan and fry the onions over a low heat until softened. Add the apple and cook for another few minutes until tender. Add the sugar and cook gently for another 8-10 minutes until caramelised, then stir in the vinegar and thyme leaves. Transfer the mixture to a shallow 18cm (7 inch) baking tin, or use a heavy-based frying pan that can withstand oven temperatures.

Cut the sheets of filo pastry in half, to give 8 sheets that will fit over the baking tin or frying pan. Spray the sheets lightly with low fat cooking spray and layer them over the onion mixture. Tuck the pastry edges down the sides of the tin.

Bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown. Cool for about 10 minutes, then invert the tart onto a serving plate. Sprinkle with a little freshly grated nutmeg or black pepper. Serve, garnished with sprigs of thyme.

I do love caramelised onions, although I'm not loving anything this morning, I woke up feeling sick, it feels like morning sickness, if I'd had sex, I'd be worried!  Googled it and would you believe, it's another symptom of the onset of menopause - YAY, ain't us woman blessed!  Hey ho, it'll wear off I'm sure, I'll try a piece of toast, see if that helps, I sure as hell won't be trying the banana and cheese omelette that was mentioned in my meeting this morning that's for sure.

I'm off, the only good this about feeling like this is knowing it isn't morning sickness!  Hope it passes soon, I don't feel ill just queasy, weird.

Have a fabulous Friday, I'll see some of you later - second night at Essington, let's hope it's a great as the first one was!

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