Sausage & Mustard lunch pasta

I’ve been trying to think of new ideas for pasta lunches that I can make and keep in the fridge, and thought sausage, Wholegrain mustard and basil would be a nice mix – so I experimented a little this evening. Tonight we are having bangers and mash using Syn free pork and Apple sausages from Joe’s butchers (online), I pinched the two spare ones before they were cooked to use them in my pasta dish. I didn’t have Wholegrain mustard or basil so used Dijon mustard and parsley instead – the result was very pleasing but will try it with the other ingredients next time.

Here’s what I did ……. I’ll omit the amounts of the ingredients, just adjust accordingly to how ever much you want to make and your own taste.

penne pasta, or other pasta shapes
2 (or as many as you like) Syn free sausages
A red onion, sliced
Dijon or Wholegrain mustard (as much or as little as you like, it’s half a Syn per teaspoon, I used about a tablespoon)
Fat free natural yoghurt (you could use fat free fromage Frais)
fresh basil or parsley
a little salt
Frylight

Cook the pasta according to the packet instructions, rinse, drain and allow to cool. Meanwhile spray a pan or wok with frylight and cook the sliced onion over a med-low heat until softened. Take the skin off the sausages and break into little chunks and toss or gently stir into the onions until cooked, remove the pan from the heat and sir in the mustard, then the yoghurt and add the herbs and season to taste.

Experiment with other veg, i.e. Diced red pepper, sweetcorn etc.

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Italian style tuna pasta bake

I’m not gonna lie ….. I didn’t like this dish…. The potential was there but it really tasted quite fishy, and I don’t do fish ! …. Prawn cocktail crisps and fish finger sandwiches are my limit !. It’s from the July 2016 mag. I had aspirations of this being a nice dish to use cold for the lunchbox, but it’s really not to my taste. If you do give it a try, let us know what you think or how you would improve or change the recipe.

Serves 4
Freezer friendly
syns per serving 1½

Ingredients

Frylight
1 onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, crushed or finely chopped
2tsp dried chilli flakes
2 x tins of chopped tomatoes
1 small pack of fresh basil
300g dried penne pasta
3 x cans of tuna in spring water, drained
1 yellow pepper, de seeded and diced
200g cherry tomatoes, halved
50g baby spinach roughly chopped
75g reduced-fat mozzerella, torn
wild rocket to serve

Method

1. Preheat your oven to 200°C/fan 180°c/gas 6. Spray a wok or large saucepan with frylight and place over a medium heat. Add the onion, garlic and 1 tsp of the chilli flakes and stir-fry for 2-3 minutes. Increase the heat to high and pour in the canned tomatoes. Tear the basil leaves from the stalks. Reserve a few leaves to serve, then srir the rest in the sauce. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to the pack instructions, draining just          before it’s done (it will finish cooking in the oven).

3. Stir the tuna through the sauce, without breaking it up too much, then stir in the  pepper, cherry tomatoes and spinach and season to taste. Gently toss the pasta through the sauce, then transfer to a medium ovenproof dish.

4. Dot the cheese evenly over the top and sprinkle over the remaining chilli flakes. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until bubbling, scatter over the reserved basil leaves, divide between four plates and serve with the rocket.

Easy chicken tikka masala

Free on Extra Easy
Serves 4
Ingredients

3-4 chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces
1 pot of Slimming World spicy tikka masala sauce
1 red pepper cut into bite sized chunks
1 onion, diced
2 tbsp fat free natural yoghurt

Method

  1. Spray a pan or wok with fry light and add the chicken, pepper and onion, cook over a med-high heat until the chicken has browned.
  2. Place the pot of frozen spicy tikka sauce in the microwave and heat on high for four minutes.
  3. pour the sauce into the pan and simmer for 10 minutes or so, remove from the heat and stir in the yoghurt. Garnish with a swirl of fat free natural yoghurt and some freshly chopped coriander, serve with rice of your choice.

 

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Slimming World spicy tikka masala sauce, available from Iceland.

Jacket Potato

The humble potato makes an inexpensive, versatile, filling and Syn free meal, full of vitamin C, fibre and potassium, they make a great standalone meal with a variety of toppings to choose from or as an ideal partner to grilled steaks, chicken etc and a nice side salad.

Whether you prefer plain or sweet potato, the baking instructions are much the same.

  • To oven bake, prick a large washed potato with a fork and place directly on the oven rack at 200°C for around 1 to hours or until the skin is nice and crispy and the potato is soft, use a sharp knife to check that the centre of your potato is cooked through – if baking sweet potatoes I would recommend placing them on a sheet of foil first as they tend to ooze juices.

Tip: spray the potato with a little fry light and sprinkle all over with salt to to make the skin crispy.

Some ideas for toppings –

Tuna and sweetcorn– Mix tuna (canned in brine or water, drained) and sweetcorn with fat-free natural yogurt or cottage cheese and/or extra light mayo (1 Syn per level tablespoon) and pile high!

Prawns with Marie Rose sauce– Mix a few tablespoons of fat-free natural yogurt with some ketchup (1 Syn per level tablespoon), a dash of Worcestershire sauce and a squeeze of lemon juice. Add as many cooked prawns as you like and stir well.

Baked beans– top your spud with lots of baked beans … add some grated reduced fat cheddar from your hexA allowance (or Syn it) If you are feeling adventurous !

Chilli– If you have some extra chilli or Bolognese left from a previous meal it will transform your spud into a delicious and filling meal.

These are a few of our faves .. If you have any yummy ideas, let me know in a comment !

Crustless Quiche

Quick and tasty, this crustless quiche is so easy to make. It’s perfect for a lunch at home, or for pack-up or picnic when you’re out and about.

Free on Extra Easy

Ingredients
Low calorie cooking spray
220g bacon, cut into 1cm pieces
110g mushrooms, sliced
2 cloves garlic
3 large eggs (I use 6, personal preference)
150g fat free cottage cheese
3–4 cherry tomatoes, halved
2 tbsp fresh chopped parsley
80g reduced fat cheddar
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Add six syns if not using reduced fat cheddar as a healthy extra.

**I add a chopped onion to this recipe, cooked with the bacon and mushrooms, omit the garlic and parsley and eat slices of the quiche cold for an on the go breakfast or snack.

Method
Remove all visible fat from the bacon and fry for a few minutes. Add the mushrooms garlic, season well and continue to cook for 4-5 minutes then set aside
Preheat the oven to 190°C/170°C Fan/Gas 5.
Spoon the bacon mixture into a flan dish.
Mix the eggs, cottage cheese, parsley and cheddar cheese in a bowl and spoon over the bacon mixture.
Top with the tomato halves and bake at 190°C/170°C Fan/Gas 5 for 15-20 minutes until just set.
Serve hot or cold with baby potatoes and a large salad.

As an alternative try different combinations of ingredients … Potato, courgette, red pepper etc.

Vegetarians, swap bacon for Quorn ham pieces for extra flavour.

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Overnight Oats

Basic Syn free overnight oats recipe

35g Oats
200g fat free natural yoghurt
Mixed berries, i.e. Blueberries, strawberries, raspberries
– you can buy bags of frozen berries/fruit that work well in this recipe.

Method

Layer the porridge, yoghurt and fruit in a jar or bowl. Cover and put in the fridge overnight so the porridge absorbs all the yoghurt.
In the morning, stir so that all the layers are mixed together and top with more fruit.

Variations

Whenever we make the overnight oats we tend to mash a banana in with the oats and a muller light flavoured yoghurt, a sprinkle of sweetener and then add whichever combination of fruit/flavourings you like, then pop in the fridge overnight.

Here are some of our favourites – experiment with the yoghurt flavours !

Cafe mocha
A vanilla and chocolate sprinkles Muller light yoghurt, 2 tbsp of freshly made strong black instant coffee, a few instant coffee granules, a sprinkling of sweetener and banana mixed into the oats.

Strawberry and Banana
Strawberry Muller light, mixed with the oats, banana, sweetener and some fresh strawberries (sliced) – reserve some strawberries to pop on top.

Blueberry
As above but use blueberries instead of the sliced strawberries … Or use both ! (Or even a frozen berry mix)
Tip: for juicy blueberries, place them in the microwave for 30-60 seconds so that most of them ‘pop’, … Don’t forget to keep some back for the topping.

Tropical
Mix frozen tropical fruits into the oat/banana mix along with a lime or passion fruit muller light.

There must be lots of other flavour combinations to try … Let me know if you find any not listed here .

 

 

Roasted Red Pepper and Tomato Soup

Ingredients
6 tomatoes quartered
4 red peppers halved
1 large onion diced
3-4 garlic cloves, peeled
300ml chicken or veg stock
salt & pepper
Fresh basil

Method
1.Add the prepared veg skin side up to a roasting tin sprayed with frylight, (I usually just fry the onions of gently in a pan sprayed with frylight as I find it easier).

2.Spray a bit of frylight on top of the ingredients add salt and pepper and place some fresh basil on top. Roast at 180 for about 50 mins or until the pepper skins blacken a bit. (Remove the onions after about 25/30 minutes if you are not doing them separately)When the tomatoes and peppers are done, allow to cool slightly and remove the skins. (If you place the peppers in a plastic food bag and leave them to cool, the skin comes away easier).

3.Make up about 300 ml of a good veg/chicken stock.Add all the ingredients to a pan with the stock and simmer for about 15 minutes.

4.Let it cool slightly then blend with a stick blender until smooth.Reheat and season to taste and serve with a swirl of fat free natural yoghurt and some freshly ground black pepper.

Enjoy!

* For a little extra kick, add a chilli, sliced in half when roasting the other veg.

 

Baked Stuffed Conchiglioni

One of my favourites .. Giant shells stuffed with flavour – this is pasta bake as you’ve never known it! – this would make a fantastic dinner party dish.

Syns per serving: 2½ Serves:4 Prep time:15 minutes Ready-in:45 minutes
Ingredients
220g dried conchiglioni rigati pasta
Low calorie cooking spray
350g <5% Mince  (or Quorn mince)p
1 small onion, very finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
100g baby spinach, roughly chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
75g quark
50g half-fat crème fraîche
A large pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
Finely grated zest of 1 unwaxed lemon
500g passata with basil
1 level tbsp grated fresh parmesan
1 level tbsp pine nuts

Serve with a large mixed-leaf salad

(about seven shells per person is a good serving)
Method
Preheat your oven to 200°C/180°C Fan/Gas 6. Cook the pasta according to the packet instructions or until al dente, then drain well and set aside.
Spray a large frying pan with low calorie cooking spray and place over a medium-high heat. Fry the mince, onion and garlic for 3-4 minutes, then add the spinach. Season and cook for a further 2-3 minutes until wilted. Remove from the heat and stir in the quark, crème fraîche, nutmeg and lemon zest.
Spread the passata over the base of a large ovenproof dish. Using a teaspoon, fill the shells with the mince mixture and arrange on top of the passata in a single layer to fit snugly. Scatter over the parmesan and pine nuts and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until golden. Divide between 4 dishes and serve with the salad.

for a veggie option, substitute the Beef Mince for Quorn.

Chana Masala

 

Free on EE, Freezer Friendly

Ingredients

Fry Light
1 Cinnamon stick (or half tsp cinnamon)
3cm piece root ginger peeled and cut into shreds (I use the ginger already shredded in the jar !)
6 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
1 tbsp medium curry powder
110g passata
1 large potato peeled and cubed (I like to par boil these)
400g can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
A squeeze of lemon juice
1/4 tsp garam masala
Salt
2 tbsp of chopped corriander (you can add mint too)

Method

Spray a large frying pan/wok with fry light and place over a medium heat. Add the cinnamon stick, ginger, garlic and most of the green chilli and stir fry for 1 min (if using cinnamon powder, add a drop of water to stop it burning).
Add the onion and cook for 6-7 minutes or until softened.

Add the curry powder and stir-fry for one minute then add the passata, the potatoes and 150ml of hot water. Stir and bring to the boil, cover and reduce the heat to low, cook gently for 10-12 minutes and then add the chick peas and cook for 5 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.

Remove from the heat, sprinkle over the lemon juice and garam masala, season and stir in the chopped herbs. Serve garnished with the remaining chopped chilli and sprinkling of chopped corriander.

Scotch Eggs

Scotch eggs slimming World stylee …. Lovely hot or cold, a great addition to your lunchbox !

ingredients

6 medium eggs
400g lean pork steaks, all visible fat removed, roughly chopped
….OR use 6 Syn free pork sausages i.e. SW ones, I use Syn free pork and apple sausages (or burgers) from Joes Sausages, an online butcher. (Remove the skin from the sausages)
125g rindless lean bacon, all visible fat removed, finely chopped
1-2 tsp mild curry powder
2 tbsp dried parsley
1 tsp dried mixed herbs
salt and freshly ground black pepper
50g dried wholemeal breadcrumbs (Syn these or HexB.. I don’t usually Syn them as there is so little on each egg)
Low calorie cooking spray

method

Preheat the oven to 200°C/180°C Fan/Gas 6.
Put four of the eggs into a pan of cold water and bring to the boil. Boil for 5-6 minutes then plunge into cold water for another 4 minutes. Carefully peel and set aside.
Place the pork meat, bacon, curry powder and dried herbs into a food processor. Season to taste and blend until fairly smooth. Transfer to a bowl and divide the mixture into four portions.
Flatten a portion of the mixture in your right hand and, with your left, take an egg and wrap the mince around it until it’s fully encased (it’s messy !). Repeat for the remaining three boiled eggs.
Spread the breadcrumbs onto a wide plate.
Beat the remaining eggs and dip each Scotch egg in the beaten egg and then roll in the breadcrumbs (the eggs, not you !)Place on a baking sheet lined with non-stick baking parchment and lightly spray with low calorie oil spray.
Place in the oven and cook for 20 minutes or until lightly golden. Cool completely on kitchen paper before packing them up in airtight containers for your picnic.

Experiment with different herbs and spices mixed in with the Sausagemeat such as paprika, chilli, mustard powder etc.

Instead of breadcrumbs, some people use smash instant mash powder to coat the eggs for a totally Syn free egg.

 

… John's Slimming Blog