Beetroot Risotto

Colourful Beetroot Risotto for a veggie meal or side dish

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If you’ve seen my Beet, Carrot and Barley Salad you’ll know that thanks Grigson’s Vegetable Book, my bible for all things vegetable, I now know how to prepare and cook beetroot!  This recipe brings together the heavenly combination of beetroot and goats cheese with risotto.

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Panko chicken and pea rice

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I’m really excited that this little dish turned out so well!  It’s a great healthy alternative to fried chicken nuggets and equally delicious with sweet potato wedges.  Lentil loves eating them with his hands too and dipping them in sauce.

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Homemade take-away curry

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OK, I know it’s a contradiction in terms!  But you can cook take-away style food at home.  It’s quick, much healthier and you can serve in take-away boxes for a really authentic experience!  It’s also much cheaper than ordering a take-away.

I wanted to introduce Coco and Lentil to some gentle curry flavours and spices without creating too complex or piquant a first dish.  As this recipe is really easy and quick to make it’s perfect for a midweek dinner.  The mango chutney adds a refreshing element.

 

Makes 2 adult and 3 child portions.

The what:

600g chicken fillet, sliced into bite-sized pieces

2 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp paprika

1/2 tsp turmeric

6 tbsp natural yoghurt

60g raisins

2 small red onions, sliced

1 tbsp olive oil

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For the mango chutney:

1 mango, skin removed and finely chopped

1 red onion, finely chopped

lime juice

1 clove garlic, finely sliced

2 small apples, peeled and finely chopped

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The how:

Add the spices to a large bowl and mix in the yoghurt to make the marinade.  Stir in the diced chicken, mix well ensuring all the chicken is coated and place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.

To make the chutney, simply add all the ingredients to a bowl and mix well.  Cover and place in the fridge until needed.

When the chicken is ready to be cooked heat the olive oil in a large saute pan, add the red onion and cook for 2-3 minutes to soften.  Next add the chicken and cook on medium heat for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Add the raisins and cook for a further 10 minutes. Make sure the chicken is cooked through before removing from the heat.

Serve with rice (brown if you’re feeling very healthy) and the mango chutney.

Enjoy!

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Beef stir-fry

This tasty little dish provides a gentle introduction to some oriental flavours, helped along by the novelty of eating with chop sticks or “chip chops” as Lentil calls them!  There are loads of different types of toddler training chop sticks available online or in some high street stores.

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The what:

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300g rump steak

70g green beans, trimmed and chopped in half / three

1cm fresh ginger, finely chopped

1 clove of garlic, finely chopped

80g bean sprouts

small handful of coriander, finely chopped

4 spring onions, sliced

1 tbsp olive oil

Noodles / rice to serve

Tip:

If meat is tough it takes too long for kids to chew with their little milk teeth.  They soon get bored and lose their appetite, or they just spit it out! So if your meat is a little on the tough side, cut it into smaller pieces and cook for a little longer to tenderise.

The how:

Heat the olive oil in a heavy-based frying pan.  Add the garlic, beef and ginger and cook over a high heat until the meat is browned.  Next add the green beans, spring onions, beansprouts and cook for a further 5 minutes until the meat is cooked through and the beans have a bit to them. Take off the heat and sprinkle with the coriander.

Serve with rice or mashed potato and don’t forget the “chip chops”!

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Buttery Buttermilk Chicken

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Lentil Is going through the painfully slow process of getting his back teeth at the moment which can affect his appetite for days at a time.  Having endured a few days of very little eating, mealtimes becoming a bit of a battlefield, I was delighted when he devoured this little dish!

Makes 3-4 portions

The what:

10g unsalted butter

3 mini chicken breasts, cubed

50ml buttermilk

6 mushrooms, sliced

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

1 onion, chopped

a squidge of tomato puree

4 tbsp creme fraiche

1 tsp lemon juice

a tbsp parsley, finely chopped so the little ones don’t spot any big green leaves they don’t want to eat!

pepper to season

Serve with about 25g per portion of pasta or rice.

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The how:

Marinade the chicken in buttermilk for about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile saute the onion, garlic and mushrooms in the butter on medium heat.  Remove from the pan and set aside.  Turn up the heat and cook the chicken for 7-8 minutes until it is cooked through.  Next re-add the onions, garlic and mushrooms and stir.  Add the tomato puree, creme fraiche and lemon juice and cook for a further 2 minutes.

Season with pepper and mix in the parsley.

Serve with pasta or rice.

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