Sunday, July 17, 2011

Miracle 6 Calorie Chocolate Jelly

This is a bit of a miracle chocolate dessert, ideal for chocolate cravings when you're on a diet!  If you follow Slimming World, then this dessert is free on all plans (even if you end up eating all 5 portions!).

Agar-agar is a seaweed, that can be used like gelatine, the difference being that it is vegan, high in fibre and some essential minerals and expands in the stomach making you feel fuller.  It's a great snack.  I've already given a few agar agar recipes on this blog, but this is my first chocolate one!  It also doesn't need a fridge to set even during the summer (setting temperature is 50C).  Currently it's about 35C in my kitchen (trust me, not pleasant!) and it set in about 30 minutes on the bench.  The setting time for this agar-agar recipe is a bit longer than most because it contains chocolate which is high in oxalic acid.  This setting property of agar-agar also means that it's ideal for picnics because it doesn't melt in summer temperatures.

Agar-agar is very versatile.  This is a pure chocolate recipe, but you could cut back on some of the water and add juice or anything you like really (adjusting the syns of course!), once you've melted the agar in the water. Definitely recommended!  Agar-agar jelly is usually quite a bit firmer than regular jelly but with the addition of cocoa powder, this jelly is much softer.  A fantastic way to quell those chocolate cravings!

I made 4 tubs and 1 rabbit mould jelly with 600ml water.

Nutrition Data  (total for 5 portions)
Calories: 28
Carbohydrate: 6g
Protein: 1.5g
Fat: 1g
Dietary Fibre: 3g

4g pack agar-agar
7g cocoa powder
1tbsp zero calorie sweetener, to taste

  • Boil 400ml water.
  • Put cocoa powder in a jug and slowly mix in the water and sweetener.  Sprinkle in the agar powder, stirring continuously.  If using agar granules/flakes, then boil for a few minutes in a saucepan stirring continuously.  Quickly stir in 200ml cold water.
  • Immediately pour into 5 moulds or small containers and put on a bench to set.  Once cool, chill in the fridge.

Multicoloured Potato Salad

This very simple salad is jam-packed with healthy vegetables, and is extremely filling.   If you are able to get a mix of coloured salad potatoes, so much the better!

Nutrition Data (for entire salad)
Calories: 1082
Carbohydrate: 184g
Protein: 55g
Fat: 16g
Dietary Fibre: 34g

Ingredients (serves 5 as a snack or 2 as a main course)
340g new potatoes
400g tin Four Bean Salad (drained weight 240g)
250g pack frozen mixed vegetables (peas/sweetcorn/carrots)
20 green olives stuffed with parmesan cheese
450g tub fat free yoghurt
15g wholegrain mustard

  • Boil or steam the potatoes in their skins for 20 minutes, then cool in cold water, drain and quarter.
  • Mix the yoghurt with the mustard, stir in the frozen vegetables (no need to thaw), the whole green olives and the bean salad.  Stir in the chopped potatoes.
  • Chill and serve.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Chicken, Bacon and Boursin Rolls in White Wine

This is absolutely delicious!  It's not an original recipe, and there do seem to be many variations on the internet.  It looks impressive, but is very easy!

2 small chicken fillets
2 slices of bacon
40g Boursin (soft garlic cheese)
80ml white wine
freshly ground black pepper

  • Preheat the oven to 190C.
  • Put the chicken fillets flat in a plastic bag and flatten them as much as possible with a rolling pin or heavy tin.
  •  In the middle of each fillet, put 20g of Boursin and roll the chicken up.
  • Roll a slice of bacon around in the other direction to cover the cheese, and keeping the ends underneath the chicken roll.
  • Put both rolls in an ovenproof dish (I use the Lekue steamer), and pour over 80ml white wine.
  • Cover and bake in the oven for 15 minutes, and then uncover and continue to bake for another 10-15 minutes until the bacon is browned.
  • Serve with new potatoes and a selection of vegetables.

Barley, green olive and mozzarella salad

This came about as a bit of a 'what have I got in the cupboard to use up?' moment...    Some time ago I bought some barley on a whim, and have added it to rice from time to time.  Well, it really needs to be used up now, along with the mozzarella that is due to be used before tomorrow.

Ingredients (serves 2 generously - the picture is a third of the total)
1 cup of barley
1 red  onion
1 cucumber
tin of sweetcorn
1/2 can red kidney beans, drained
1 can stuffed olives (40)
100g mozzarella
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp honey

  • Cook the barley according to instructions (I use a rice cooker with double the amount of water), and allow to cool.
  • Chop the onion, chop the cucumber and mozzarella into 1cm pieces and halve the olives.
  • Make the dressing by whisking together the olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice and honey.
  • Toss all the ingredients together and store in fridge until ready to eat.