Home, Recipes, Savoury

Bacon Wrapped Cream Cheese Chicken

Cream cheese chicken.jpg                                                                       Makes 4

 

I created this dish while trying to lose weight on the low carb diet. I wanted something that comforted me like junk food did but also kept me on track. This satisfied any craving I had and now has become a common favourite in our household.

 

Ingredients:

  • 4 chicken breast fillets
  • 8 rashers of streaky bacon
  • 250g softened cream cheese
  • 1/3 cup grated cheddar
  • 1/3 cup grated mozzarella
  • salt and pepper to taste

 

Method:

  1. Preheat your oven to 180ºc. Mix the cream cheese, cheddar and mozzarella together and then season with salt and pepper to your liking.
  2. Butterfly your chicken breast and then pound it out so that its even. Season with salt and pepper. Place a couple tablespoons of the cream cheese mixture into the centre of the chicken and roll it up. Wrap the bacon around the chicken and then use toothpicks to hold it together.
  3. Preheat a fry pan on a medium high heat and then place the chicken, seam side down, into the pan. This helps close the opening to reduce the amount of filling that may escape. Sear the chicken for about 2 minutes on each side or until the bacon is slightly crispy. Place the chicken into the oven and bake for about 20-25 minutes then let it rest for 10 minutes. Serve with any veg of your choice.
Recipes, Savoury

Homemade Pasta Dough

pasta dough logo        Makes approximately 600g of pasta.

Pasta is always a great, easy dinner. Sure you can buy some great “fresh” pasta from your supermarket. But why, when it’s so easy and cheap to make it yourself in a standard food mixer?

Fresh is always best!

Ingredients:

  • 3 1/2 cups 00 flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 eggs + 1 egg yolk
  • Water

 

Method:

  1. Place the flour, egg and salt into a mixing bowl of a stand mixer with the flat beater attachment first. Place onto a low speed for about 60 seconds. Then in 1/2 tablespoon increments add water. You want the dough to come together but not to be wet.
  2. Change the flat beater to a dough hook and on a low speed let it knead for 2 minutes.  Then place it onto a lightly floured bench and knead by hand for 2 more  minutes. Cover the dough and let it rest for 20-30 minutes. Then divide dough into 4 portions and put through a pasta roller to make sheets of pasta perfect for lasagne, or you could then put the sheets through a spaghetti attachment to have with your bolognese sauce!
  3. After rolling your pasta out, be sure to use flour or semolina to keep them from sticking together. Have a big pot of boiling salted water handy and place the pasta into the pot and cook till tender, anywhere between 3-6 minutes. Drain and drizzle with olive oil to avoid pasta sticking.

 

Recipes, Savoury

Hidden Veg Bolognese

spag bol sauce logo.jpgServes 4

My fiancée is one of the fussiest eaters I know and really doesn’t enjoy eating a lot of veg. Occasionally I’ll find ways of adding veg into our meals (with him knowing of course) so we both still get some of our 5 a day. This recipe is one of the best bolognese sauces I have created to date.  If you’re a parent with fussy little ones, or even a fussy partner like me, this will please everyone!

 

Ingredients:

  • Oil
  • 500g good beef mince
  • 500g pork and veal mince
  • 1 large carrot, grated or 2 small carrots
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 zucchini (courgette), grated
  • 3 sticks celery, finely diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Pinch chilli flakes (optional)
  • 2 400g tins of diced tomatoes
  • 1 700ml jar passata
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup red wine (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon caster sugar
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • Small bunch fresh basil
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • salt and pepper

 

Method:

  1. Heat a large heavy based pot over a medium high heat and add about 1 tablespoon of oil and brown off all the mince, making sure you season with some salt and pepper. Using a slotted spoon, scoop the meat out into a bowl and then drain the fat and juices from the pot. Set meat aside.
  2. Turn heat down to a medium heat and add another tablespoon of oil. Add the onion and celery first and a little salt and cook till slightly softened. Then add the rest of the vegetables and garlic with the pinch of chilli flakes if you’re using them. Continue to cook the veg until sweated down and softened.
  3. Return the mince to the pot with the vegetables and then add the tinned tomatoes, passata, red wine, tomato paste, sugar, dried oregano, dried basil, fresh basil, 1 tsp salt and 1 tsp pepper. Mix thoroughly, turn down to low and let it simmer for about 30 minutes-1 hour (the longer the better).
  4. Taste the sauce and decide whether you need more salt, pepper or sugar. Add the milk and simmer for a further 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and with a stick blender just give the sauce a quick blitz to the consistency you desire.
    Enjoy with spaghetti, or even use the sauce for a lasagne.