Sunday, 28 October 2012

beef hotpot (Slimming World friendly)...


This cold Autumnal weather I love to make real comfort food and make the most of my slow cooker too. This recipe is great as you throw almost all the ingredients apart from the topping in the slow cooker and let it get on with it. I just used carrots and onions this time with the beef but you can use root vegetables like swede and parnsip in it too if you like them and I serve it with peas and cabbage so you get your 1/3 superfree if on the slimming world extra easy plan . Its a good one to cook on low in the slow cooker while at work then when you come in just have to put the topping on and put in the oven.
Beef Hotpot
1 lb lean braising steak (cubed)
1 large onion (chopped) 
2-3 large carrots (sliced)
1/2 pint beef stock
1 tsp dried or fresh thyme
1/2 tsp salt 
1/2 tsp pepper
some dried potato powder (like smash)
2 large potatoes (sliced very thinly) 
spray oil


Put the steak, onions, carrots, stock, thyme and salt and pepper in the slow cooker and cook on low for 6-8 hours or high for 4 hours until steak is tender. Thicken the gravy with a little dried potato (syn free so an easy way to thicken a gravy without extra syns) Taste for seasoning.

Put the beef mixture into a casserole dish and top with overlapping slices of the potato then spray lightly with oil sprinkle with a little salt and pepper and place in the oven at gas 5/375/190 for about an hour until potatoes are cooked and browned on the top. Its a good idea to place the dish on a baking sheet you can see from the pic the gravy sometimes bubbles up over the top of the dish during cooking and will save your oven :  )

Serve with extra vegetables and is syn free on extra easy ...enjoy x

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Pasta kale and white bean soup (slimming world friendly)

Since coming back from holiday and being right back on the slimming world plan one thing thats really helping is taking my lunch into work. Unfortunately we don't have a microwave now so I invested in a food flask to take soups and stews to work so save money and stick to the plan too...everyones a winner :  )

I was having a look for soup recipes I could adapt and found this one it makes a really thick and hearty soup more like a stew really , made a few adjustments so it was slimming world friendly.

Pasta, kale and white bean soup

3 slices smoked lean back bacon (sliced)
1 onion (chopped)
3 carrots (peeled and chopped)
2 cloves garlic (crushed)
1 tbsp tomato puree
1 tsp sage
2 tsp thyme
3 pints chicken stock
8oz small pasta like conchigliette (or break up some linguine or spaghetti )
1 can cannelini or haricot beans (drained and rinsed)
1/2 bag chopped kale
salt and pepper
spray oil

Spray a large pan with spray oil , add the bacon and cook for a few minutes. Add the onion and cook for a few more minutes until the onion has softened. Add the carrots, garlic, tomato puree, thyme and 1/2 tsp salt and pepper and cook for a few more minutes. Add the chicken stock, bring to the boil then turn heat lower and simmer for 10 minutes. 

Add the pasta and simmer  for another8 minutes then add the beans and kale and simmer for a further 10 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. If its too thick just add some more water.

Syn free on extra easy ....Enjoy!!!