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). 

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 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.

Onion Rice

A tasty twist on an otherwise plain side dish.

Servings:    1Onion Rice

Pro Points:    7pp

Simple Start

/Filling & Healthy:    0pp

Preparation time:     5mins

Cooking time:    20mins

Ingredients

  • 60g brown rice
  • 2 onions, 1 chopped roughly, the other sliced thinly
  • 1 vegetable stock cube
  • Spray oil

Method

  1. Put the rice into a small saucepan and crumble in the stock cube.  Cover with boiling water so that the water level sits above the rice to a depth of about 1inch.  Add the chopped onion, stir once and bring back to the boil.
  2. Reduce the heat and simmer until the water has been absorbed (approx.. 10mins).  Turn off the heat, cover the saucepan and leave to stand for 10mins.
  3. Meanwhile, heat a small frying pan over a low and spray with oil.  Add the sliced onions and fry stirring frequently until golden brown (add a splash of water to prevent the onions from sticking if required).
  4. Serve the cooked rice topped with the fried onions as an accompaniment to your choice of meat and vegetables.

Top tip: Stir in frozen peas and sweetcorn at step one and add cooked pieces of chicken, pork, beef or fish before serving for a tasty main meal.