Grilled Balsamic Chicken on a Bed of Caprese Salad

Ingredientschicken-salad

  • 1 medium sized boneless chicken breast per person (the quantities of other items in this recipe make enough for 3-4 chicken breasts, so multiply or subtract amounts according to the number of people you’re planning to feed).
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar, the best you can find (extra required for drizzling)
  • 4 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp each of fresh basil, rosemary, and parsley
  • 60ml lemon juice
  • fresh buffalo mozzarella
  • 1 Romaine lettuce, or any other ‘fancy’ lettuce (not Iceberg)
  • 1 large plum or beef tomato, sliced
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Method

Mix the olive oil with the lemon juice and balsamic vinegar, and add the garlic powder and cayenne pepper, and then about half of the fresh herbs. Marinate the chicken for 45min to 1 hour. On a high heat, grill the marinated chicken until the juices run clear, and then serve on a bed of mozzarella and lettuce, with drizzled olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

Healthy Pizza

Doughpizza

  • 275g bread/strong flour
  • 130g wholewheat flour
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • A little seasalt
  • 1 sachet dry yeast
  • cooking spray or a little olive oil

Sauce

  • 1 handful fresh basil leaves
  • 4 chopped tomatoes
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • 2 cloves garlic, sliced
  • salt and pepper

Topping

  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1-2 packets low fat mozzarella
  • 2 Tbsp grated Parmesan
  • 200g fresh spinach, steamed and squeezed dry
  • 120g low fat ricotta
  • red pepper flakes
  • a little torn fresh basil
  • ½ small onion, finely sliced
  • 3 button mushrooms, washed, peeled, and sliced
  • salt and pepper to taste

Method

Combine the dough ingredients, and knead. Make 2 balls of dough and mist with a little cooking spray or olive oil. Let them prove for 1 hour in a warm place.

For the sauce, combine the all the ingredients except the basil and cook together on a medium heat for 15min, mashing the tomatoes, until the sauce thickens. Add the basil just before removing from the heat.

Roll out the 2 dough balls into 2 very thin pizza bases, and brush with olive oil. Cook at 260C for 8-10 minutes, then remove from the oven and add the sauce and topping. Cook for a further 6 to 8 minutes before removing from the oven and adding ricotta and pepper flakes.

Tuna Linguine for 4

Ingredientspasta

  • A little seasalt
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 340g linguine
  • ½ tsp chili flakes
  • 4 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 2 Tbsp capers
  • 225g olives
  • 1 tin tuna
  • 1 tin plum tomatoes
  • pepper
  • 1 handful basil leaves

Method

Cook the pasta in a large pan of salted water, until al dente. At the same time, toast the chili flakes in a little olive oil, before adding the other ingredients and heating through. Reserve the basil. Drain the pasta and mix with the other ingredients, topping with the handful of fresh basil and a little olive oil.

Amatriciana bucatini for 5-6

Ingredientsspaghetti

  • 200g pecorino
  • 2 small red chilies
  • 250g bacon, cut into slices, or pancetta cubes
  • 500g bucatini pasta
  • 2kg fresh tomatoes

Method

Make a homemade passata by whizzing the tomatoes in the blender, before passing them through a sieve with a wooden spoon into a large pan. Simmer on a low heat for 20-30min.

Put the bacon and chilies in a cold pan, and turn the heat to medium. The fat will melt and the bacon and chilies will cook together. After 8-10min, add the passata, and cook for another 5min.

At the same time, cook the pasta in a pan of salted water. Drain, add the sauce and the pecorino, and stir well. Remove the whole chilies. Sprinkle the remaining pecorino on the dish to serve.

Garden Minestrone

IngredientsMinestrone Soup

  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tsp chopped fresh oregano
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 400g squash, cubed
  • 400g courgettes, cubed
  • 1 large carrot, finely chopped
  • 130g fresh sweetcorn
  • 520g tomatoes, chopped
  • 1.2 litres chicken or vegetable stock
  • 115g macaroni
  • 1 tin cannellini beans
  • 170g fresh spinach
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 115g Asiago cheese

Method

Add a little oil to a pan and gently fry the vegetables until tender, reserve the tomatoes. Put ¾ of the tomatoes in the blender along with ⅓ of the stock, and whizz them together. Add the mix to the pan, along with the remainder of the tomatoes and stock, bring to the boil, then cook on a low heat for 20min.

Add the macaroni and beans to pan, cook until macaroni is tender. Remove from heat. Stir in spinach, salt, and a little pepper. Serve in bowls with a sprinkling of cheese, and a little ground pepper if desired.

Plum & Amaretti Semifreddo for 8

Ingredients

  • 85g amaretti biscuits, broken into pieces
  • 300ml double cream
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1 Tbsp Disaronno
  • 350g caster sugar
  • 450g ripe plums, de-stoned

Method

Place the plums in a pot with 2 tbsp water and 110g sugar. Cover, and cook over a medium heat for 10min until soft. When slightly cooled, whizz with a hand blender. Pass the plums through a sieve to remove the skins.

Place the rest of the caster sugar in a pan with 150ml water on a low heat. Boil for 5min.

To prepare the crispy meringue, whisk the egg whites until stiff. Beat the sugar mixture with the egg white until very thick. In a separate dish, whip the cream until it forms soft peaks, then gently mix in the Disaronno, plums, amaretti biscuits and the meringue. Pour into a tin lined with clingfilm, cover with more cling film, and freeze until set (usually several hours). When you are ready to serve the semifreddo, remove from the freezer 5min ahead before scooping.