LUXE / HEALTH ginger chicken and shiitake bowl…

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My current foodie obsession is the humble Shiitake mushroom – and now that my local supermarket seems to stock these beauties on a regular basis, I am chucking them in everything!  Not only do they add a richness to any dish you pop them into, but the benefits of Shiitake mushrooms are well documented.  In fact, these little morsels are said to boost your immune system, fight cancer, reduce inflammation in the body, support heart health and give you a good dose of B vitamins in the process.  Enjoy!

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LUXE / HEALTH Ginger Chicken and Shiitake Bowl

Ingredients:

2 chicken breasts
1/2 cup Tamari (or light soy sauce)
4 tsp. sesame oil
2 tsp. mild mustard (Dijon is my fave!)
1 generous tsp. coconut sugar
2 inches ginger, grated
1 garlic clove, crushed
Handful of Shiitake mushrooms, roughly chopped
2 bunches Pak Choy, sliced into thirds
6 spring onions, finely sliced
Soba noodles
Coconut oil
Black pepper
Toasted sesame seeds

Method:

  • Preheat your oven to 180C.  Then in a bowl, whisk together the tamari, sesame oil, mustard, coconut sugar, ginger and garlic.
  • Pop the chicken breasts in an ovenproof dish and pour over half the marinade.  Bake for 30-35 minutes until chicken is cooked through.  Once the chicken is cooked, slice finely and set aside.
  • Meanwhile, prep vegetables and heat a little coconut oil in a wok.  Add spring onions and mushrooms and toss for a few minutes until softened.  Add the remaining marinade to the pan, then add the Pak Choy and finally, the sliced chicken, tossing to coat in the marinade.  Season with black pepper.
  • At the same time, cook Soba noodles according to packet directions then rinse, drain and divide into two bowls.
  • Pile the chicken and vegetables on top of the noodles and sprinkle with extra spring onions and sesame seeds before devouring immediately!

LUXE / HEALTH lemon chicken…

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This classic chicken dish is a crowd pleaser and is just as perfect for a quick mid-week meal as it is for a dinner party.  While it’s definitely tasty served warm, the cauliflower salad makes a worthy side dish on its’ own or served up as lunch leftovers the next day.  Let me know what you think…

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LUXE / HEALTH Lemon Chicken with Cauliflower Rice

Ingredients:

For the chicken:
Zest and juice of one lemon
2 garlic cloves, crushed
Handful of fresh coriander, roughly chopped
1 tbsp. honey
4-6 tbsp. olive oil
Sea salt and black pepper
4 organic chicken breasts

For the cauliflower rice:
1/2 large cauliflower head, broken into florets
1/2 cup frozen peas, steamed
4 spring onions, finely sliced
Pinch of dried chilli flakes
Zest and juice of half a lemon
Coconut or olive oil
Sea salt and black pepper

Method:

  • In a large bowl, combine the zest and juice of one lemon, crushed garlic cloves, coriander, honey, olive oil and seasoning.
  • Add the chicken, stirring to coat well then cover with gladwrap and pop in the fridge for a minimum of 2 hours (overnight is best).
  • When you’re ready to cook – preheat your oven to 180 and pop your chicken in an oven proof dish.  Pour over the remaining marinade as this will get nice and sticky as the chicken cooks.
  • Bake for 30-35 minutes until chicken is cooked through but still moist.
  • Meanwhile, break cauli into florets, then blitz in your blender or food processor for a few seconds until it resembles rice.  Set aside.
  • In a large fry pan, heat a little coconut or olive oil, then add the cauli rice and stir for a few minutes until warmed through.  Add the zest and juice of 1/2 lemon, spring onions and steamed peas and heat through for 2-3 minutes.  Add salt and pepper to taste and a healthy pinch of dried chilli for extra kick.
  • Serve chicken sliced on a generous bed of cauliflower rice and sprinkle over any extra fresh coriander and spring onions.  Devour immediately!

LUXE / HEALTH Asian braised chicken…

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After three wonderful weeks away, it’s time to get back to reality and back into the kitchen…so here’s the perfect dish to welcome autumn.  This Asian braised chicken is a recipe I found and adapted from an old cookbook years ago and to this day, it remains a firm favourite in our household and is often the dinner I revert to when I’m lacking inspiration or energy.  It’s literally a one pot wonder so let me know what you think…

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LUXE / HEALTH Asian Braised Chicken
(Serves 4)

Ingredients:

8-12 chicken thighs
1 cup soy sauce
1 litre water
4 generous tbsp. balsamic vinegar
Cinnamon stick
1/3 cup white sugar (or caster sugar – whatever you have in the cupboard)
4-5 garlic cloves, crushed
1 inch fresh ginger, finely grated
Generous pinch of dried chilli flakes
Handful sesame seeds
1 bunch steamed broccolini or green beans
1 packet soba noodles

Method:

  • In a large saucepan, combine the soy sauce, water, vinegar, garlic, ginger, chilli flakes, cinnamon and sugar and bring to the boil.
  • Add the chicken thighs to the pan, then reduce to a medium heat and simmer, uncovered, for 50 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, in a small pan, toast the sesame seeds until golden brown.  Set aside.
  • After 50 minutes, the chicken should be cooked through and braised a beautiful golden brown.
  • Cook the soba noodles according to packet directions and drain well (they usually take about 4 minutes)
  • To serve, place 2-3 chicken thighs on a small bed of soba noodles, add the steamed greens, a little broth from the saucepan and sprinkle with sesame seeds.  Simple!

 

 

LUXE / HEALTH Chicken and Broccolini Zoodles…

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I love being in the kitchen, but some days I get home from work and stare into the fridge with little to no inspiration as to what for cook for dinner.  On days like that, this recipe is a godsend as it’s super quick to rustle up, it’s incredibly comforting and yet you’re not compromising on health as it serves up a huge dose of protein and greens.  Aaaand…it’s pretty as a picture too!

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LUXE / HEALTH Chicken and Broccolini Zoodles
(Serves 2)

Ingredients:

1 large chicken breast, sliced into strips
1 bunch broccolini, each stem trimmed into thirds
4 small zucchini, spiralised
Handful of cherry tomatoes, halved
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 red chilli, finely diced
1 small handful slivered almonds, toasted
Zest and juice of one lemon
Freshly grated parmesan, to serve
Olive oil
Salt and pepper

Method:

  • In a wok or large frypan, heat a little olive oil and stir fry the chilli, crushed garlic and chicken strips until the chicken is cooked through.  Set aside in a small bowl.
  • Steam the broccolini in a little water in the microwave for 2-3 minutes until cooked through, but still crunchy.  Drain well and set aside.
  • Toast the slivered almonds in a dry saucepan for a few minutes until golden brown.  They will smell delicious!
  • Add a little more oil to your pan, then stir fry the zucchini noodles until they are heated through.
  • Toss through the lemon zest, then add the chicken, broccolini and cherry tomatoes to the pan and heat through.
  • Squeeze over the fresh lemon juice and toss well.  The cherry tomatoes will wilt nicely as they begin to cook through, adding moisture to the dish.
  • Once the zucchini noodles have softened a little, they’re ready!
  • Tip into two bowls then sprinkle over the toasted almonds and serve with a generous crack of salt and pepper and freshly grated parmesan.

LUXE / HEALTH chicken tacos…

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Sometimes a salad just won’t cut it…and in the weekend, I often find myself craving something a little tastier!  Takeaways however, are loaded with nasties but healthy does not have to mean bland and trust me, these tacos are packed with flavour and won’t dent your clean eating regime.  Plus, they’re super simple to make and a mess to eat…win, win!

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LUXE / HEALTH Chicken Tacos
(Serves 2)

Ingredients:

For the chicken:
2 chicken breasts, sliced into strips
2 tbsp. tomato paste
1 tin black beans
1 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. ground coriander
1 tsp. chilli powder
1 tsp. dried oregano
Black pepper
Sea salt

For the salsa:
Handful fresh grape or cherry tomatoes, finely diced
1 long red chilli, finely diced
Juice of 1 lime
Olive oil
Handful of fresh coriander, chopped roughly
Black pepper
Sea salt

For the guacamole:
1 ripe avocado
1/2 red onion, finely diced
Juice of half a lemon

To serve:
Soft corn tortillas/tacos (I use gluten free)
Greek yoghurt
Fresh lime wedges
Grated tasty cheese

Method:

  • To make the salsa, mix the diced cherry tomatoes, chilli and coriander in a small bowl with the lime juice, a good glug of olive oil and salt and pepper, to taste.  Set aside.
  • To make the guacamole, mash the avocado with a fork and mix in the diced red onion and add lemon juice to taste.  Set aside.
  • For the chicken, mix all the spices together in a bowl, then heat a little olive oil in a large frypan.  Add the spices to the pan, then toss in the chicken and coat well with the spice mix.
  • Once the chicken starts to cook, add the tomato paste and mix well.  Turn the chicken occasionally so that it cooks through.
  • Meanwhile, cook the black beans in the microwave for a couple of minutes, then drain well and add to the pan with the chicken.
  • Before serving, heat the taco’s in a hot pan with a little olive oil (around 30 seconds each side), or warm in the microwave.
  • Spoon a good portion of the chicken into the warmed taco, then top with a little grated tasty cheese, a spoon of salsa, guacamole and a dollop of greek yoghurt.  Finish with a squeeze of fresh lime and enjoy!

(If you want to make these even healthier, simply replace the tacos with lettuce leaves and omit the cheese!)