12m +, Nut Free, Savory

Sweet and Sour Chicken

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  • 12m +
  • Nut Free
  • Diary Free
  • Can be frozen

We love a Chinese take away in our house, but since weaning The Monster I am much more conscious of the salt, sugar and MSG that goes into take away food. Sweet and Sour Chicken is one of our go-to favorites so I have worked out a recipe that contains no add salt, refined sugar or MSG and it tastes just amazing, serious you’ll love it! While there seems like alot of ingredients it is actually very simple and is ready in about 30 minutes.

I always use 2 bell peppers as they’re The Monsters favourite part of the dish, but feel free to adjust the veggies to your liking.

I serve mine with egg fried brown rice, but it will work with noodles or whatever your favourite side is.

Ingredients:

  • 3 chicken breasts (cubed)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup corn flour
  • 2 bell peppers (different colours)
  • 1 carrot
  • 1/2 a small onion
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 small tin pineapple chunks
  • 1/2 cup pineapple juice
  • 1/4 cup low sugar and salt ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar

Method:

In a bowl, combine the chicken with the soy sauce, 1 tablespoon of the cornflour, and 1 mixed egg. Set to the side while you prepare the other ingredients.

In a saucepan heat 2 tablespoons of oil over a medium heat. Add the chopped the bell peppers, carrots, garlic, ginger and onion and cook for 2-3 minutes, until softened.
Add the vinegar, pineapple juice, pineapple and ketchup, and stir. Bring the mixture to a boil and allow to thicken a little.
reduce the heat and let it simmer while you prepare the chicken.
Place the remaining corn flour in a separate bowl and add the chicken pieces that you put to the side earlier,  stir until liberally coated.
Fry the chicken for 4-5 minutes, until the coating is golden brown and the chicken is cooked throughout.

Add the chicken to the sauce, stir through and serve.

 

Enjoy

Em xx

7m +, Breakfast, Egg Free, Gluten Free, Lunchbox Idea, Nut Free, Savory, Snack, Vegetarian

Baked Beans

20180423_134837

  • 7m +
  • Egg Free
  • Nut Free
  • Gluten Free
  • Diary Free
  • Vegetarian
  • Can be frozen

 

Beans, beans they’re good for your heart, beans, beans they make you….I’ll leave it there. The Monster is a massive fan of baked beans at the moment, which is great, I mean, they’re cheap, have lots of health benefits, are good sauce of protein, etc. Expect the delicious tinned ones you find in the supermarket are often high in salt and sugar for children. The good news is that that are actually super easy to make from scratch! And they freeze well too!

Ingredients:

  • 1 can of Cannellini Beans (or bean of your choice)
  • 1 can chopped tomatoes
  • 1/2 tablespoon dried sage
  • Dash of Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon of sugar (it really is needed to balance the acidity of the tomatoes)

Method

In a blender place the tomatoes, sage, sugar and Worcestershire sauce and blitz until smooth. Pour into a small sauce pan.

Drain the cannellini beans and add to the pan with the tomato sauce. Simmer on a low heat for 30-45 minutes until the sauce has thickened and the beans are tender.

That’s it, homemade healthy baked beans!

They will keep in the fridge for 4-5 days or you can divide into portions and freeze.

Reheat in a saucepan for a 5 minutes.

 

Enjoy

Em xx

7m +, Breakfast, Gluten Free, hidden veg, Lunchbox Idea, Nut Free, Savory, Snack, Vegetarian

Spanish Omelette

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  • 7m +
  • Nut free
  • Gluten Free
  • Vegetarian
  • Lunch Box Idea

The Monster is currently not a fan of sandwiches (this could all change in a matter of hours, toddlers are fickle.) This means I have to come up with alternatives when it comes to his lunchbox for playschool. A firm favourite (for now) is Spanish Omelette. Filling, super easy to make and I can pop veggies in it too, whats not to like.

This doesn’t freeze to well unfortunately, however it does last in the fridge for about 4 days and is so good the whole family will be at it anyway so it won’t last long! It is great hot or cold.

Ingredients:

  • 5 eggs
  • 1 small potato (boiled and sliced)
  • 1/4 cup grated mature cheddar
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped veggies (I used onion, mushrooms, peppers, tomato)

 

Method:

Brush a small frying pan with olive oil. Place on a low/medium heat. In a bowl whisk the eggs and cheddar together, set aside. Put the finely chopped veggies in the pan and gently cook until softened. Pour over half the egg mix. Lay the potatoes into the egg. Pour over the remaining egg mix and continue to cook until the bottom of the omelette is set. remove from the hob and place under a grill to cook the top of the omelette until set (about 3 mins).

Turn out onto a plate. can be served hot or cold.

 

Enjoy

Em xx

12m +, Breakfast, Egg Free, Lunchbox Idea, Nut Free, Savory

Chicken and Apricot Sausages

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  • 12m +
  • Dairy Free
  • Egg Free
  • Nut Free
  • Can be frozen
  • Lunch box idea

Ok these arn’t sausages in the traditional sense but they are super tasty, really easy to make and healthy. Shop brought sausages are high in salt as well as all sorts of other hidden bits so I wanted something to replace them with that The Monster would love, and boy does he love these (to be fair I love them too and stole half his stash…opps)

You can freeze them before or after cooking (I prefer to freeze then cook as they hold more moisture) They work well in place of regular sausages but also go well in a lunchbox, or choped up in a cous cous salad, the possibilities are endless.

Ingredients:

  • 500g boneless chicken thighs (thighs contain more iron than breasts, which is vital for children)
  • 1/2 cup wholemeal breadcrumbs
  • 1 tablespoon dried tarrgon
  • 5 dried apricots (chopped)

 

Method

Pop it all a food processor and blitz until it looks like a mince texture.

Drizzle a little oil in a frying pan and place on a medium heat hob. Flour your work surface and your hands and then just roll the mixture into sausage shapes (how big or small you make them is up to you). Roll each one in a little flour and fry for about 4 minutes each side, until cooked through.

It’s as simple as that.

 

If you want to mix it up, swap all these:

  • Chicken for pork
  • Apricot for Apple
  • Tarragon for sage

 

Enjoy

Em xx

8m +, Egg Free, Nut Free, Savory

Prawn and Pea Risotto

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  • 8m +
  • Nut free
  • Egg free
  • Can be frozen

The Monster has been a fan of risotto since he was about 7m old and I now have quite a few different risotto recipes so we don’t get bored but this is definetly one of his favorite ones.

This risotto is super simple and can be made from scratch in 30 minutes so it makes a fab quick dinner that the whole family will enjoy.  For small tots, be sure to chopped the prawns finely, for whole kids leave them nice and chunky.

If freezing, once cooked portion into a muffin tray and pop in the freezer, once solid transfer to a freezer bag. Allow to defrost before reheating gently in a sauce pan (it goes stodgy if done in the microwave!)

Ingredients:

  • 400g peeled and cooked prawns
  • 1.5 cups of risotto rice
  • 1 litre of low salt vegetable stock
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 1/4 cup grated parmasan cheese
  • Pince of saffron
  • 1 lemon

Method:

Place a large frying pan over a medium heat hob. Drizzle a little oil or butter into the pan. Put your saffron into the stock. Add the risotto rice and stir so that it’s all coated with a little of the oil, spread the rice to cover the bottom of the pan. Pour in just enough stock to cover the rice, and stir until all the liquid is absorbed. Add a little more stock and repeat. Do this until all the stock is used and the rice is cooked al dente (not totally soft but cooked through) lower the heat and add the peas and prawns stirring until heated all the way through. Stir in the parmasan cheese and add a small squeeze of lemon juice.

I normally give everone a little slice of lemon so they can add more to thier dish if they wish.

Serve and enjoy

Em xx