Sunday, March 25, 2012

Szechuan Chilli Prawn Pizza

Loving Crust Gourmet Pizza at the moment but of course they are not the best thing for the waistline no matter how delicious they are.  So I decided to attempt making my version of one of my favourites, Szechuan Chilli Prawn Pizza.

We are no strangers to home made pizzas as you probably all know by now but we do love experimenting.  My take on this pizza was flavoursome and overall I was happy with the outcome.

Szechuan Chilli Prawn Pizza

Serves: 2
ProPoints per serve: 8

200 grams raw king prawns
1 teaspoon chilli flakes
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 zucchini, thinly sliced lengthwise
1 lebanese bread, 100g
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1/2 red capsicum, sliced
8 cherry tomatoes, halved
8 button mushrooms, sliced 
2 shallots, sliced diagonally
4 baby bocconcini, quartered
1/4 cup sweet chilli sauce

Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

Rinse prawns and pat dry.  Mix together chilli flakes and pepper.  Sprinkle over prawns and toss to coat.  Set aside.

Preheat grill, place zucchini on a flat layer on a baking tray.  Grill until golden. Set aside.

Place lebanese bread on a pizza tray,  cover with tomato paste.  Layer zucchini, mushrooms and capsicum on base.  Top with prawns and bocconcini.  Sprinkle with shallots.

Bake in oven for 10 - 15 minutes until prawns are cooked through and cheese is melted.

Drizzle with sweet chilli sauce.

(Click here for a printable version of this recipe)

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Red Curry Beef and Vegetable Parcels

I was chasing something tasty for dinner and for some reason Thai keeps popping into my mind.  The kids didn't want a curry so I had to think about making something kid friendly as I really didn't want to cook two meals just to satisfy everyone's wishes.

Knowing I had my favourite Antoniou Fillo pastry in the fridge I set about cooking a parcel with red curry beef and vegetables enclosed.  Win - win... we all love filo parcels and I got to settle my craving for Thai food.

Easy to make as I used a premade red curry paste.  Lots of vegetables in the mix and a thick sauce ensured  that this parcel was filling, tasty yet delicate.  In fact the family were upset that I had only made 4!!

Red Curry Beef and Vegetable Parcels

Serves: 4
ProPoints per serve: 11

cooking spray
500 grams lean beef strips
1 onion, thinly sliced
3 medium carrots, cut into thin batons
1 red capsicum, thinly sliced
1 green capsicum, thinly sliced
1 bunch brocolini, trimmed and halved
3 tablespoons Thai Red Curry paste
1 x 375ml Carnation Light and Creamy Coconut Flavoured Evaporated Milk
1 tablespoon cornflour
1 tablespoon water
8 sheets Antoniou Fillo pastry

Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

Spray a large frying pan or wok with cooking spray.  Cook beef strips in batches until browned but not overcooked.  Remove from pan to a plate.  Repeat with remaining batches.

Respray pan and cook carrots and onions over medium for 3 - 5 minutes or until tender.  Add a little water to the pan to assist in cooking not burning.  Add capsicums and cook for a further 5 minutes.  Add broccolini and cook for a further 2 minutes.  Stir in the red curry paste and the evaporated milk ensuring all is combined.  Mix together the cornflour and water.  Add to pan and stir until slightly thickened.  Remove from heat and allow to cool.

Once mixture has cooled slightly drain of some of the sauce to keep for later.

Using one sheet of pastry at a time.  Lay one sheet on a bench or pastry board and spray with cooking spray.  Top with a second sheet of pastry.  Place one quarter of mixture towards one end of the pastry, fold ends over to enclose, spray edges with cooking spray and roll up to form a parcel.  Repeat with remaining pastry and mixture.

Place on a foil lined baking tray and spray all over with cooking spray.  Cook in oven for 20 - 25 minutes until golden and cooked through.

Warm remaining sauce and serve with parcels.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Pork with Caramalised Pear and Blue Cheese

Honestly I love blue cheese even though I know I shouldn't so the chance to serve it as a component of a dinner meal was too hard to resist especially as we had some Roquefort in the house.  I have refrained from eating it straight from the fridge so at least I had a little will power I guess.

Beurre Bosc pears are also becoming a favourite of mine especially when roasted. The soft buttery sweetness of roasted pears compliment pork beautifully.  These served pan fried pork and a simple green leaf salad scattered with crumbled blue cheese was a delicious and quick mid week dinner.

Pork with Caramalised Pear and Blue Cheese
(recipe adapted for

Serves: 4
ProPoints per serve: 10
cooking spray
4 Beurre Bosc pears, quartered
800 grams pork scotch fillet, sliced
green salad leaves
200 grams roquefort blue cheese or similar

Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

Line a baking tray with foil and spray with cooking spray.  Place pears on tray and spray with cooking spray.  Bake in oven for 20 - 25 minutes, turning once, until caramalized and tender.  Remove and keep warm.

Meanwhile spray a frying pan with cooking spray.  Cook pork steaks for 3 - 5 minutes on each side or until cooked to your liking.  Remove from heat and allow to rest for 5 minutes.

Divide salad pears and pork amongst serving plates and sprinkle with crumbled blue cheese. Drizzle pork with pan juices if desired.

(Click here for a printable version of this recipe)

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Sweet and Spicy Fish

I purchased some beautiful looking gummy shark pieces last night and didn't want to do it an injustice by just crumbing and frying them.  I wanted something light but flavoursome yet not overpowering as to spoil the flavour of the fish itself.

I had spied a chicken recipe quite a while ago which I had kept in my mind for a rainy day but knew that the ingredients were exactly the flavours I was looking for to compliment the fish fillets.

Sweet from the honey and spicy from the subtle mix of mustard, coriander and chilli made for a wonderful flavour combination.  Not an overly heavy thick sauce either to smoother the meal rather a light jus which complimented and topped off the whole meal.

And another added bonus was the quickness in which this meal came together -  a  brilliant weeknight wonder with dinner on the table in around 30 minutes.

Sweet and Spicy Fish
(Recipe adapted from Woman's Weekly 70 Family Meals for Under $10)

Serves: 4
ProPoints per serve: 10

1 kilogram shark fillets or other firm fish fillet, cut into 8 equal size portions
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
 2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon wholegrain mustard
1 tablespoon fresh coriander, chopped
1 individual spring onion, finely chopped
2 clove fresh garlic, crushed
1 fresh red chilli, deseeded and chopped finely
1/2 cup basmati Rice

 Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

Line an oven tray with baking paper and arrange flake on prepared tray.

In a jug combine lime juice, honey, soy sauce, mustard, coriander, spring onion, garlic and chilli.  Brush half over fish fillets.  Place in oven and bake for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile cook rice as per packet instructions, drain and keep warm.

Turn fish fillets and baste with remaining sauce mixture.  Bake for a further 10 minutes.

Serve on a bed of rice and steamed vegetables of choice.  Drizzle pan juices over fish and rice.

(click here for a printable version of this recipe)

Monday, March 5, 2012

Beef and Capsicum Enchiladas

It came to that moment where I knew I wanted Mexican influenced food for dinner tonight no matter what I had menu planned.  Needless to say the stirfry beef dish was tossed and helloooooo enchiladas!!

To be honest I haven't cooked much Mexican foods from scratch, I have mastered a pretty good salsa!  El Paso has always taken up residence in our pantry as it's a quick and easy take on such a flavoursome cuisine.  I have read many recipes  for enchiladas and couldn't find one that completely took my fancy so tonight's dinner was born from a combination of about 10 or so recipes.

This dish was awesome - full of flavour along with a hint of chilli leaving a tingle on the tastebuds.  Definitely filling, one enchilada was enough for me served with salad.

Beef and Capsicum Enchiladas

Serves: 8
ProPoints per serve: 7

cooking spray
2 medium red onions, finely diced
1 teaspoon crushed chilli
2 garlic cloves, crushed
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 1/2 tablespoons dried oregano leaves
2 x 400 gram cans diced tomatoes
1 cup water
freshly ground black pepper
500 grams beef strips
2 teaspoons sweet paprika
1 green capsicum, thinly sliced
1 red capsicum, thinly sliced
8 low fat tortillas
150 grams low fat grated tasty cheese
1 spring onion, finely sliced

Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

Spray a large frying pan with cooking spray and heat over medium.  Add onion, chilli and garlic.  Cook for 5 minutes or until onion is softened.  Add cumin, cook stirring for 1 minute. Add tomatoes, water and 1 tablespoon oregano, season with salt and pepper, bring to the boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes or until slightly thickened.

Spray a 10 cup casserole dish with cooking spray.  Spread 1 cup of sauce mixture over base of dish.

In a bowl combine beef, sweet paprika and remainer of oregano.  Spray another frying pan with cooking spray and cook beef in batches, quickly until browned.  Do not cook through.  Remove from heat. 

Respray pan with cooking spray and cook capsicums for 2 minutes, stirring, or until softened.  Remove from heat.

Cook tortillas in microwave for 1 minute.  Place tortillas on the bench.  Top with 1/8th of beef strips and 1/89th of capsicum mixture.  Top with 2 tablespoons of sauce mixture.  Roll up to enclose filling.  Place in casserole dish seam side down.

Top enchiladas with remaining sauce mixture and sprinkle with cheese.

Bake for 25 minutes or until golden and heated through.  Sprinkle with spring onion and serve with salad and sour cream (optional).

(click here for a printable version of this recipe)

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Apple Pork with Cashews

I came accross this recipe while drooling my way through which is a cooking website I have to say I spend way to much time on.  But my time spent is always well worth it in my opinion!!

With an amazing combination of apple, soy and ginger the pork was cooked perfectly - still tender and succulent.    The sauce was amazing, a combination of apple and orange, neither overpowering the other.  I loved the crunchiness of the cashews which just finalised the dish.

Served with Braised Potatoes and steamed vegetables I was completely satisfied.

Apple Pork with Cashews
(recipe adapted from

Serves: 4
ProPoints per serve: 11

1/2 cup plain flour
freshly ground black pepper
4 large pork cutlets, fat removed 
cooking spray
40 grams reduced fat butter
1 cup orange juice
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 tablespoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground ginger
3 apples, sliced into rounds
1/2 cup raw cashews

Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

Place flour, salt and pepper into a plastic bag. Add cutlets, a few at a time, and toss until coated in flour. Shake off excess flour.

Heat oil and butter in a heavy-based flameproof casserole dish over high heat. Cook cutlets, in batches, for 3 minutes on each side or until golden. Remove to a plate.

Add juice, soy, sugar, ginger, salt and pepper to the dish. Bring to the boil, then remove from heat. Place cutlets into dish. Top casserole with apples and sprinkle with cashews. Cover.

Bake for 35 minutes. Remove lid and cook for 20 minutes.

(click here for a printable version of this recipe)

Friday, March 2, 2012

Braised Potatoes

Another different potato side dish - if you haven't guessed I am a little bored with mashed, baked, boiled or steamed potatoes at the moment... LOL!!

These are easy to make and cook and I think you will actually be surprised by the outcome.

Braised Potatoes

Serves: 8
ProPoints per serve: 3

cooking spray
8 medium potatoes, peeled
2 teaspoons chicken stock powder
2 cups water
freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon ground paprika
2 tablespoons reduced fat butter

Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

Spray a shallow casserole dish with cooking spray.

Slice potatoes thinly and all the way through.  Keep slices together.  Place in casserole dishes keeping the potatoes in shape.

In a large jug mix together the chicken stock and water, seasoning with salt and pepper.  Pour over potatoes.  Sprinkle potatoes with paprika.  Cover casserole dish with foil and bake in oven for 40 minutes.

Remove foil, place dobs of butter on each potato.  Return to oven and bake for a further 15 - 20 minutes or until sauce is thickened a little and the potatoes are cooked through.

(click here for a printable version of this recipe)

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Slow Cooked Italian Beef with Pasta


No traditional Welsh food for this little Welsh Lass this year as I knew it was going to be another long day at work as I was spending the day in Kilmore - a good 2 hour drive each way from home so I decided to let our beloved slow cooker work it's magic.  And once again it did.

This recipe had such a lovely flavour starting with a herbed tomato base with a hint of spice.  Jam packed with vegetables and served simply with pasta there was definitely no complaints in the Murray house.

Slow Cooked Italian Beef with Pasta

Serves: 8
ProPoints per serve: 12

1 kilogram lean beef, cut into 3cm cubes
4 medium carrots, peeled and thickly sliced
2 medium green capsicum, large dice 
2 medium red capsicum, large dice
2 medium onion, large dice
1/4 cup dried oregano leaves
2 220 gram tins diced tomatoes 
1 tablespoon beef stock powder
2 cups hot water
1/4 cup(s) tomato paste
2 clove(s) fresh garlic, crushed
2 Tbsp ground sweet paprika
1 Tbsp brown sugar
freshly ground black pepper
500 g pasta, tagliatelle
2 Tbsp arrowroot flour
1/4 cup water, extra

Place beef, carrots, capsicum and onions in slow cooker vessel.  Sprinkle with oregano leaves.  Pour diced tomatoes over meat and vegetables.

In a large jug or bowl combine together stock powder and water.  Mix well.  Add tomato paste, garlic, paprika and sugar.  Combine well.  Pour mixture over meat and vegetables in slow cooker vessel.  Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.  Mix to combine.

Cook on low for 8 hours.

During the last hour of cooking mix together arrowroot and extra water to form a smooth paste.  Gently stir through casserole.

Cook pasta as per packet instructions, drain and keep warm.

Place pasta in serving bowls and serve with Slow Cooked Italian Beef.

Note: You could easily cook this in a large casserole dish in an oven.  Heat oven to 180 degrees and cook covered for 1½ hrs. Add arrowroot mixture and continue to cook for a further 30 minutes. Cook pasta as per packet directions and serve in individual bowls with the beef.

(Click here for a printable version of this recipe)