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Thursday, 19 April 2018

Fancy a curry night


19th April 2018
Don’t get side-tracked by people who aren’t on track.
It’s almost the weekend again, that’s come round quick, got the coffee morning to look forward to this Saturday, raising lots of money for the Stroke Association, a truly good cause both my parents suffered from strokes, I remember dad had a few and mom has had a couple of mini strokes which added to her Alzheimer’s, they’ve come a long way with research though, so let’s raise them more money for more studies.   Of course the best way to help prevent a stroke is to eat a healthy diet, exercise regularly, and avoid smoking and drinking too much alcohol.  

I’ve found a few recipes in this month’s Co-op magazine that’ll help us eat a healthy diet, whilst still having a Friday night curry night, they’re all below.

I myself am having pizza for my Friday night fakeaway tea, the M&S ones that are low in points compared to others.  I’ve got leftover chicken in the fridge, might make that thing with a can of white kidney beans and the juice, then add a bit of garlic paste, soy sauce and a chicken stock cube, it was really good the last time I had it.  Although the forecast for today is hot, so maybe a chicken salad or sandwiches.  We’ll see, not good that I don’t have a plan on a Thursday though….

Right here’s to getting on with my day, chicken and rice, there sorted and quick and easy too, eggs for breakfast, I know some say they get fed up of eating chicken and eggs, which is what we’re looking at in meetings this week, but I like chicken and eggs and they’re not the only thing I eat, it’s all about variety.

Butter chicken and rice
Feeds 4, 9SP per serving, ready in 45 minutes

1 tbsp vegetable oil (4SP)
1 onion, thinly sliced
1 tsp chilli powder
½ tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp ground cumin
2 cloves garlic, crushed
3cm ginger, grated
2 tbsp tomato purée (1SP)
400g can chopped tomatoes
4 chicken breasts, chopped
15g unsalted butter (6SP)
2 tbsp 0% fat Greek style natural yogurt
240g white basmati rice (24SP)
Chilli and lime slices (optional)
Small handful coriander leaves

Heat the oil in a pan and fry the onion with 1 tbsp water on a medium heat for 6 mins, until starting to turn golden. Stir in the chilli powder, cinnamon and cumin and another 1 tbsp water, and cook for 1-2 mins. Add the garlic and ginger and cook for another minute.

Add the tomato purée, chopped tomatoes and 200ml water. Stir, then cover and simmer over a low heat for 10 mins.

Stir in the chicken and simmer for 10 mins more. Add the butter and stir in as it melts. Turn the heat off and stir in the yogurt.

Meanwhile, cook the rice according to the pack instructions. Serve the rice with the curry, scatter with the coriander, and garnish with chilli and lime slices, if you like.


Cauliflower pakoras (V)
Made with a moreish, spicy batter, these low-fat nuggets are baked rather than fried.

Feeds 4, 4SP per serving, ready in 35 minutes

1 Co-op British cauliflower, cut into florets 
2 Co-op British free range eggs
2 tsp turmeric
4 tsp curry powder (3SP)
1 tsp chilli powder
6 tbsp Co-op 0% fat Greek style natural yogurt
100g breadcrumbs (10SP)
1 tbsp sunflower oil (4SP)
Sliced red chilli (optional)

Preheat the oven to 220°C/fan 200°C/Gas 7 and line a baking tray with greaseproof paper. Cook the cauliflower florets in a pan of boiling water for 2 mins. Drain and refresh under cold water. 

In a bowl, beat the eggs, stir in the turmeric, curry powder, chilli powder and yogurt, then season. Add the cauliflower florets and toss until coated. 

Put the breadcrumbs on a plate and roll the florets in them to coat. Arrange on the baking tray, drizzle with the oil and bake for 18-20 mins, until golden. Garnish with slices of red chilli, if using.

Frying pan naan breads (V)
Four ingredients and 15 minutes — yep, that’s really all it takes to make these second-to-naan breads.

Makes 4, 8SP per serving, ready in 15 minutes,

100g Co-op 0% fat Greek style natural yogurt 
½ tsp salt
250g Co-op wholemeal self-raising flour (25SP)
15g Co-op unsalted butter, melted (6SP)

Put the yogurt and salt in a bowl and mix with 100ml water. Add the flour and stir in with a knife until the mixture looks crumbly. Briefly knead to form a smooth dough.
Cut into 4 pieces and roll out each one with a rolling pin, until about ½ cm thick, shaping into ovals. 
Heat a frying pan over a medium heat and dry fry the naans in batches. Cook for 1-2 mins on each side, turning when golden, until they are puffed up and cooked inside.
Serve brushed with the melted butter.

Beef samosas

These tasty parcels of crisp filo are filled with spicy British mince.
MAKES 8, 4SP per samosa, ready in 1 hour

1 onion, finely chopped
1 tbsp sunflower oil, plus 2 tsp for brushing (6SP)
1 clove garlic, sliced
1 tbsp medium curry powder (2SP)
100g Co-op 5% fat British lean beef steak mince (2SP)
100g Co-op Jersey Royals, diced (2SP)
50g Co-op frozen peas
4 sheets filo pastry (15SP)

Preheat the oven to 200°C/fan 180°C/Gas 6. Fry the onion in the oil with 1 tbsp water for 5 mins. Stir in the garlic, curry powder and 1 tbsp water and cook for 1-2 mins more.

Add the mince and brown. Stir in the veg and 100ml water, cover and simmer for 10 mins, until the liquid has evaporated. Leave to cool. 

Cut a sheet of filo in half to make 2 squares, then cut each square in half again to make 4 rectangles. Repeat with the other filo sheets. 

Spoon an eighth of the mixture into the bottom-left corner of one rectangle, then fold the bottom-left corner over to the centre on the right-hand side. Next, fold the bottom-right corner up to the top-right corner. Finally, fold the bottom-right corner up to the top-left corner to make a triangle, then brush with oil to seal. Put the triangle on another rectangle of pastry, fold up and seal again. 

Brush with oil and place on a tray, then repeat to make 8 parcels. Bake for 15 mins, until golden, then serve.

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