Shaksuka

A flavoursome dish that works for any time of the shaksukaday.

Serves: 2

Smart Points: 8

No Count (substitute the flatbread for Weight Watchers pitta bread)

Cooking time: 2 mins prep

10 mins cooking

Ingredients

  • 1tsp rapeseed oil
  • 1 medium onion, roughly chopped
  • 1/4tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 pinch chilli flakes
  • 1tbsp tomato puree
  • 400g tinned, chopped tomatoes
  • 4 handfuls of spinach
  • 4 medium eggs
  • 2 individual seeded flatbread

 

Method

  1. Heat the oil in a large non-stick frying pan over a medium heat.  Add the onions and cook for 2-3mins until softened and beginning to brown.
  2. Add the cumin, smoked paprika, chilli flakes and tomato purree.  Stir and cook for another 1 minute.
  3. Add the tinned tomatoes and spinach and stir well until the spinach has wilted.
  4. Make 4 holes in the mixture and tip an egg into each one.
  5. Cover and cook for approximately 3 minutes until the whites of the eggs are cooked but the yolks are still runny.
  6. Serve with the toasted flatbread.

 

Easy Red Lentil Soup

An easy to make soup that’s perfect for autumn

Servings:    6

Smart Points:    2

No Count

Cooking time:    5mins prep + 30mins cooking

Ingredients

  • 1tsp healthy oil
  • 2 medium onions, finely chopped
  • 250g carrots, finely chopped
  • 110g red lentils
  • 3 vegetable stock cubes made up with 1.7l boiling water
  • salt & pepper

Method

  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan. Add the onion and carrot and cook gently until soft, without browning.
  2. Add the stock and the lentils.  Cover and simmer for 30 minutes.
  3. When the lentils and vegetables are tender, blend until smooth.
  4. Reheat.  Season to taste and serve.

Minestrone Soup

A filling yet summery soup.Minestrone Soup

Servings:    4

Smart Points:    4

No Count   (if made with wholemeal pasta.  If made using white pasta, allow 1SP/serving)

Cooking time:    10mins prep + 35mins cooking

Ingredients

  • 1tsp healthy oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 leek, sliced
  • 1 small potato, diced
  • 400g tin chopped tomatoes
  • 1tbsp tomato puree
  • 1 vegetable stock cube made up with 600ml boiling water
  • 2tsp dried thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 30g soup pasta or macaroni
  • 200g tin baked beans
  • salt & pepper

Method

  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan. Add the onion, carrot and garlic and cook gently until soft, without browning.
  2. Add the leek and potato and cook gently for 5 mins.  Add a splash of stock if the vegetables begin to stick to the bottom of the saucepan.
  3. Add the tomatoes, tomato puree, stock, thyme and bay leaf.  Bring to the boil, cover and simmer for 20mins.
  4. Add the pasta and baked beans then simmer for a further 10mins until the pasta is just cooked.
  5. Season to taste, then serve.

Top Tip: Sprinkle with a tablespoon of freshly grated Parmesan before serving for an extra 2SP per serving (dish will no longer be vegan). 

Ratatouille with Chicken

A tasty, versatile sauce that makes and excellent accompaniment to pasta, rice or potatoes.

I served mine with 60g wholewheat pasta twists for an extra 6pp.

I served mine with 60g wholewheat pasta twists for an extra 6 Pro Points.

Servings:    6

Pro Points:    2

Filling & Healthy:    0 (if using oil from your daily allowance)

Cooking time:    40 minutes

Ingredients

  • 4tsp healthy oil
  • 1 red onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 aubergine, cut into large chunks
  • 1 large courgette, cut into thick semi-circles
  • 1 red and 1 yellow pepper, cut into large chunks
  • large handful of cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1tsp chilli flakes
  • 1tbsp mixed herbs
  • 5 cloves garlic, 3 unpeeled, 2 peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 medium (165g each) chicken breasts
  • 2x 400g cans chopped tomatoes
  • 2ooml chicken stock made with 1 stock cube
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree
  • large bunch fresh basil, torn roughly

 

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 200c/fan 180/Gas Mark 6.
  2. Put all of the chopped vegetables into a large roasting tin.  Lightly crush the 3 unpeeled cloves of garlic under a large flat knife or using the heel of your hand and add to the tin.
  3. Drizzle 4tsp of the oil over the vegetables and sprinkle with the mixed herbs, chilli flakes and a good pinch of salt and pepper.  Toss the vegetables well until they are all coated with the oil and seasoning.
  4. Lie the chicken breasts on top of the vegtables and put the tin into the oven to roast for 30mins (after 15mins, toss the vegetables again).
  5. Meanwhile, heat the remaining oil in a large pan over a med/low heat.  Add the chopped garlic and gently stir fry to 1min.
  6. Add the tinned tomatoes, tomato puree and stock to the garlic and bring to rapid simmer for 3mins before adding the chopped basil.
  7. When the vegtables are soft and the chicken is cooked through, chop the chicken into bitesize pieces before adding the whole lot, including any roasting juices, to the tomatoe sauce.
  8. Bring the sauce to a rapid simmer for a few minutes.  Check the seasoning and serve.

Top Tip: Leave out the chicken and use vegetable stock to make this a 0 Pro Points, vegan/vegetarian dish. 

Asian Quinoa Stir-Fry

I made this Asian Quinoa Stir-Fry tonight for dinner for myself and my sister from the January 2015 edition of the BBC Good Food magazine. Asian Quinoa Stir Fry

It’s a vegan-friendly, wheat-free recipe and came in at 7pp on the Weight Watchers Plan.

It was simple to prepare, really tasty and felt incredibly healthy to eat.  The only change I’d make if cooking it again would be that I’d use less liquid than it states in the recipe as mine turned out quite soupy.

Spicy Chicken, Tomato & Chickpea Soup

An incredibly simple, tasty and filling soup.Spicy Chicken, Tomato & Chickpea Soup

Servings:    4

Pro Points:    7

Simple Start:    Yes

Filling & Healthy:    0

Cooking time:    1 hour 35 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1tsp healthy oil
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 medium (165g each) chicken breasts, cut into small cubes
  • 1/4tsp chilli powder
  • 1tsp ground turmeric
  • 1tsp ground cinnamon
  • 150g tomato puree
  • 1.5l vegetable stock made with 2 stock cubes
  • 410g can chickpeas, rinsed
  • 40g whole wheat pasta, broken into small pieces
  • 3tsp dried mint
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 2tbsp 0% fat natural yogurt

 

Method

  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan. Add the onion then cover and cook gently until soft, without browning.
  2. Add the meat and brown well.
  3. Add the spices and tomato puree. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring frequently.
  4. Gradually add the stock over a period of 15 minutes in order to maintain a thick consistency. When all the stock is added, cover and simmer for 30-40 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Add the chickpeas then simmer for a further 5 minutes.
  6. Stir in the pasta and simmer for 7 minutes.
  7. Add the mint and simmer for 1 minute more.
  8. Stir in the lemon juice and season to taste.
  9. Serve garnished with 1/2tbsp yogurt per person.

Persian Beef Pilaf

Persian Beef Pilaf The recipe I used as the basis for this dish was from a soup cookery book.  Although it is cooked in a broth, by the end of the cooking process there wasn’t much liquid left and it was more like a wet pilaf.  Most importantly, it was really tasty and filling!

Servings:    7

Pro Points:    6

Simple Start:    Yes

Filling & Healthy:    0

Cooking time:    1hr 10min (+1hr soaking time)

Ingredients

  • 1.2l water
  • 2 beef stock cubes
  • 225g extra lean steak mince
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 75g yellow split peas (soaked for 1 hour in plenty of water)
  • 1tsp ground turmeric
  • 1tsp ground allspice
  • 1/2tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2tsp ground black pepper
  • 1tsp salt
  • 225g brown rice
  • 350g spinach, chopped
  • 25g dill, chopped
  • 75g spring onions, chopped
  • 150g 0% fat natural yogurt

For the garnish

  • 1/2 medium onion, finely sliced
  • 1tbsp chopped fresh mint
  • 1tsp healthy oil

 

Method

  1. Pour the water into a large saucepan, add the stock cubes and bring to the boil.
  2. Add the beef, onion, soaked yellow split peas, spice and salt. Cover and simmer gently for 30 minutes.
  3. Add the rice and simmer for a further 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Add the spinach, dill and spring onions then simmer for a further 10 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, make the garnish: fry the onion in the oil over a moderate heat until golden brown. Add the mint then cook for a further 5 minutes until crisp. Set aside.
  6. Stir the yogurt into the rice mixture and heat through.
  7. Serve with the garnish sprinkled on top.

 

 

Bacon, Mushroom & Tomato Pasta

This is one of my staple mid-week recipes. It is quick, economical and it’s so easy that Mr FFF actually cooked the dish pictured all on his own. And to give him the full credit he deserves, he didn’t even make much mess!

Servings:   2

This batch loving prepared by Mr FFF

This batch loving prepared by Mr FFF

Pro Points:   7

Simple Start:   0

Filling & Healthy:   0

Preparation time:     5mins

Cooking time:   15mins

Ingredients

  • 120g dried wholemeal pasta
  • 4 bacon medallions, chopped
  • 150g mushrooms, sliced
  • 400g tin chopped tomatoes or 4 fresh tomatoes chopped
  • 2tsp mixed herbs

 

Method

  1. Fry the bacon and mushrooms in a non-stick saucepan until the bacon is just cooked.
  2. Stir in the tomatoes and bring to the boil.
  3. Reduce the heat and stir in the mixed herbs.
  4. Simmer the sauce while you cook the pasta according to the instructions on the packet.
  5. Season the sauce to taste and serve on top of the drained pasta.

 

Top tip: Add a pinch of dried chilli flakes to give this dish a fiery kick.

Spicy Bean Soup

This is so incredibly quick and easy I almost feel fraudulent for posting it as a recipe.  But it’s so delicious and filling I thought it would be mean not to share.Spicy Bean Soup

Servings:    2

Pro Points:    4pp

Simple Start: Yes

Filling & Healthy:    0pp

Preparation time:     0mins

Cooking time:    10-15mins

Ingredients

  • 400g tin mixed bean salad, drained and rinsed
  • 400g tin chopped tomatoes
  • Handful chopped, frozen spinach
  • Handful of frozen sweetcorn
  • 1/2tsp chilli flakes
  • 1/2tsp paprika
  • 1/4tsp ground cumin
  • Vegetable stock cube

Method

  1. Put all the ingredients into a medium saucepan and bring to the boil.
  2. Stir in hot water until the soup reaches your preferred consistency.
  3. Bring back to the boil then reduce the heat and simmer until cooked through (approximately 5-10mins).
  4. Serve.

Top tip: If you have any, stir in some chopped fresh coriander before serving.

Chicken Fajitas

A little taste of Mexico that’s quick and easy to prepare and cook.Chicken Fajitas

Servings:    2

Pro Points:    10

Simple Start: 0 treats

Filling & Healthy:    0 weeklies

Preparation time:     10mins

Cooking time:    15mins

Ingredients

  • 2 medium chicken breasts, cut into strips
  • 1 medium onion, cut into wedges
  • 2 peppers, cut into strips
  • 1/2 – 1 tbsp fajita seasoning mix
  • 4 Weight Watchers soft tortillas
  • Spray oil

 

Method

  1. Put the chicken into a bowl and spray with the oil.  Sprinkle over the seasoning and stir until the chicken is well coated.
  2. Heat a non-stick frying pan over a high heat and spray with oil.  Add the chicken to the pan and stir until sealed on all sides.
  3. Add the peppers and onions and continue stir frying for approximately 5mins until the chicken is cooked through and the peppers and onions have softened.
  4. Meanwhile, heat the tortillas according to the instructions on the packet.
  5. Divide the chicken mixture between the tortillas.  Roll up and serve with potato wedges and salad (remember to add the Pro Points of the wedges if you are counting).

 

Top tip: For a more indulgent dish, add your choice of salsa, guacamole, sour cream and grated cheese before rolling your fajitas

**Remember to add in the relevant Pro Points values for any additional toppings**