Potato & Pea Balti

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 4
Prep & Cooking time: 35-40 minutes

Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamin A, B-Vitamins, Vitamins C & K, protein, fibre, iron, magnesium, manganese, potassium and (per serving) is low in sugar and saturated fats!

OK, so it was another curry night here at Eat2Health, but (to some of you) this recipe might seem a little like it’s from Cheaty-McCheat’s kitchen… and we can appreciate that this idea is partially true! We sourced and used a reasonably healthy (jarred) curry sauce. Everyone is entitled to have a ‘night off’ from a full-blown cooking marathon from time to time…we just have to be mindful about the products we choose to use, and of course consider ways in which we can easily improve the nutritional balance of our meals…

Which is what we took on board when using this sauce!

Our product instructed the user to cook it with chicken and fresh chillies and then serve it with naan bread. Firstly, this might be the authentic and traditional method, but the chicken is a no-go for us. Secondly, we’ve commented about how we feel about naan bread before…and thirdly, where are the recommendations for vegetables?! Even though this sauce was made from some veggies (but the first ingredient was water by the way!), it’s not going to go far to account for your 5-A-Day quotas. 

We decided to use hearty potatoes, robust peas and some fibrous and nutritious tomatoes, bell peppers and spinach instead! We added extra flavourings, such as the ginger, chilli and turmeric etc. because we knew the tomatoes would dilute the sauce slightly; herbs and spices are always a healthier way to flavour your meals without adding extra salt.

The result was a delicious and healthy meal! Balti’s by nature are tasty, tangy and not overly spicy; admittedly I found ours a bit spicy… I guess the ginger, chilli and mustard seeds added some extra heat! Once I just added some plain/unsweetened soya yoghurt, everything was fine! 🙂 You could also try serving this curry with some of our savoury flat bread (as a tasty addition and/or to diffuse the heat!), but we found this curry super filling as is.

Per serving the sauce provided: 62kcal, 3g Sugar, 4g Fat, 0.3g S/Fat and 0.5g Salt. Like any processed foods, the fat, sugar and salt contents must be considered; there is no point in buying a product with very little sugar and/or fat but it still contains high/unhealthy levels of salt (and vice versa!). Amusingly (to us anyways!) this product we used had less salt (per serving) than our favourite baked beans that we occasionally buy!

One last thing before we cook! As it’s coming to the end of the UK’s ‘National Salt Awareness Week’, we hope that you’ve been taking note of some of the advice brought to your attention not only by us, but by lots of other social media sources! Let’s all work hard at getting the national salt intake average down from 8.1g to the government recommended levels of 6g/day.

 

Let’s all Eat2Health everyone (#lesssalt!)! 

 

Quick facts:

  • The word Balti roughly translates to ‘bucket’. This is because the word refers to the type of cookware used and not to the ingredients. This type of curry is traditionally cooked in a steel or iron (and even copper coated) pan that looks quite similar to a Chinese ‘wok’; the pan is called a karahi (a ‘Balti pan/bowl’).

Traditionally it can be prepared with meat and vegetables and is served with naan bread; it’s considered a medium-hot curry (but we think this rating can be loosely translated- depending on your heat threshold!).

  • Per serving (*based on 4 servings), this recipe provides you with approx. 4 portions of fruit/vegetables towards your 5-A-Day!

 

 

Ingredients:

+++++++++++++++++++++++++1kg           Baking potatoes
+++++++++++++++++++++++++300g       Frozen garden peas
+++++++++++++++++++++++++200g       White onion
+++++++++++++++++++++++++4g             Garlic cloves
+++++++++++++++++++++++++90g          Raw ginger root
+++++++++++++++++++++++++16g           Red Chilli
+++++++++++++++++++++++++100g        Frozen sliced bell peppers
+++++++++++++++++++++++++140g         Frozen spinach
+++++++++++++++++++++++++                 Fry spray (low-fat cooking oil)
+++++++++++++++++++++++++1g             Turmeric
+++++++++++++++++++++++++4g             Brown mustard seeds
+++++++++++++++++++++++++285g        Balti curry sauce (one jar)
+++++++++++++++++++++++++400g       Tinned plum tomatoes

 

 

Directions:

 Wash and chop the potatoes into small bite-sized pieces.

 

 

Place the potatoes into a large saucepan full of cold water or a medium-low heat. Bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer. Cook for 10-15 minutes or until tender. Drain.

 

 

In the meantime, place the peas into a steamer pot with some water. Bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer. Steam for 3-4 minutes or until tender. Drain.

 

 

Meanwhile, place the bell peppers and spinach into two separate microwaveable dishes. Place the dishes into the microwave. Heat the vegetables on a defrost setting. Drain.

 

 

In the meantime, peel and dice the onion and garlic. Wash, peel and grate the ginger. Wash, remove the stem, de-seed and dice the chilli.

 

 

Place a large saucepan over a medium-low heat. Spray it with a little low-fat cooking oil.

 

 

Add the onion, garlic, ginger and chilli. Gently fry for 1-2 minutes or until softened.

 

 

Add the bell peppers. Mix to combine.

 

 

Add the turmeric and seeds. Mix to combine. Gentry fry for 30 seconds or until fragrant.

 

 

Pour in the sauce. Add the tomatoes. Stir to combine.

 

 

Add the potatoes, peas and spinach. Gently stir to combine.

 

 

Allow to curry to simmer for approx. 5 minutes (or longer if desired). Remove from the heat.

This step is just really to heat the sauce; if you prefer richer flavours, allow it to simmer for a big longer.

 

 

Cover with a lid. Allow it to rest 5-10 minutes (if you have time). We always find that the flavours taste best when the meal is not boiling hot!

 

 

Serve warm. Ladle into a large serving bowl and garnish with some fresh coriander and mustard seeds(if desired).

We garnished ours with a bit of semi-defrosted coriander- hence why it doesn’t look as vibrant as fresh coriander!

 

 

Enjoy!

 

 

If preferred…

  • Make this a two-pot dish! Cook all of the ingredients in one large saucepan (except the potatoes) and adjust the cooking times accordingly.
  • Use a variation of vegetables and/or legumes, pulses or baked tofu! Curries are very adaptable and taste great with most plant-based foods! Non-vegans can add a combination of lean meat, poultry or fish with a medley of vegetables!
  • Create your own balti paste using fresh ingredients; make it as neutral or as spicy as you like!

 

Sources:
The Curry House

Tofu, Pea & Oyster Mushroom Stir-Fry

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 4
Prep & Cooking time: 65-75 minutes

Notes: This recipe contains: B-vitamins, Vitamins C & E, protein, fibre, calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, potassium, phosphorus, and (per serving) is low in salt and saturated fats!

This stir-fry recipe can be summed up into three words: spicy, fresh and delicious! It’s a simple recipe with a spicy sauce; it uses the Eat2Health’s ‘baked tofu’ as seen in previous recipes! If you prefer things a little less heated, use half the amount of raw chilli and chilli flakes. 🙂

 

If your short on time, prepare the tofu the day/night before!

 

 

 

Ingredients:

 

 

Nutritional Info:

NB: To reduce the fat content further, omit the rapeseed oil and use more low-fat cooking oil instead and slightly reduce the quantity of tofu used.

 

 

Directions:

Open and drain the tofu. Place it between two heavy chopping boards for approximately 20-30 minutes to remove any excess water.

 

In the meantime, heat the oven to 200°C/400°F. Line a baking tray with a silicone mat or parchment paper. Spray it with a little low-fat cooking oil (if desired).

We used approx. four ‘sprays’ and then spread it across the mat with a silicone spatula.

 

 

Meanwhile, wash, remove the stem, de-seed and dice the chilli. Wash, peel and chop the ginger. Peel and dice the garlic.

 

 

Wash the peas. Wash and dry the mushrooms. De-shell the nuts (if applicable). Wash, trim the ends and slice the onion.

 

 

 Drain and chop the tofu into small pieces (cubes). Place them onto the baking tray. Lightly spray with some low-fat cooking oil.

We used approx. three more ‘sprays’.

 

 

Place the baking tray into the oven. Bake for approx. 20 minutes or until lightly golden. Remove.

 

 

Meanwhile, place a small saucepan over a medium-low heat. Add the onion, water, sugar, starch and chilli flakes. Whisk together until the flour and sugar have dissolved. Pour in the vinegar. Season it to taste with some salt. Mix together.

NB: We have advised you to use slightly less water than we have here.

 

 

Keep whisking until the sauce begins to thicken. Remove from the heat.

It will develop a glossy appearance from the starch.

 

 

 In the meantime, cook the noodles according to the packet instructions. Drain.

Ours took 3 minutes to cook!

 

 

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a non-stick wok over a medium heat.

 

 

Add the chilli, ginger and garlic. Gently fry for 1-2 minutes, or until softened.

 

 

Add the peas. Gently fry for 1 minute.

 

 

Add the mushrooms. Gently fry for a further 1-2 minutes.

 

 

Add the baked tofu. Gently mix together.

 

 

Pour in the sauce. Mix together. Stir the mixture until the sauce comes to a gentle boil.

 

 

Remove from the heat. Add and stir through the nuts.

You might see the odd noodle in our wok; we changed our minds at the last moment! We were going to mix the noodles into the mixture, but felt there was already enough going on in the wok!

 

 

Serve warm. Transfer the noodles into a large serving bowl. Top with the stir-fry mixture.

We garnished ours with a sprinkling of sesame seeds. 🙂  How does everyone rate their ‘chop stick’ skills?!

 

Enjoy!

 

 

Refrigerate any leftovers in a resealable container; reheat and consume within 3 days.

Vegan ‘Shepherd’s Pie’ With Lentils

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 4-6
Prep & Cooking time: 80-90 minutes

 

Recipe adapted from: Coeliac UK

Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamin A, B-Vitamins, Vitamin C & K, protein, fibre, iron, potassium, some magnesium, zinc, calcium and is low in fats!

This recipe may not be as traditional or authentic as some British folk would prefer, but let’s face it- it’s a recipe that’s been adapted several times over the last 100 years or so! I think it’s a great recipe for those cold winter nights that are upon us, or for anyone implementing healthy lifestyle changes, and it’s definitely a meal the whole family can enjoy. The bottom line is, it tastes great, it’s easy to prepare and the ingredients are very interchangeable and inexpensive!  

 

NB: Based on four servings, this recipe provides approximately: 400kcal, 2.3g fat, 0.45g s/sat per serving. (*A standard supermarket version with lamb could provide 10g-20g of fat from the meat, butter, cream or full-fat milks they use in their recipes.)
*Based on a cursory look at some of the main supermarket brands.

 

NB: I used two peppers as I had some to spare!

 

Ingredients:

++++++++++++++150g      Brown lentils
++++++++++++++2L           Vegetable broth (low-sodium/DF/GF)
++++++++++++++1000g    Rudolph Potatoes
++++++++++++++4g           Garlic cloves
++++++++++++++170g      White onion
++++++++++++++160g      Carrots
++++++++++++++180g      Red bell pepper (I used 2 because I loads to spare!)
++++++++++++++100g      White mushrooms
++++++++++++++100g       Garden peas
++++++++++++++ 8g           Corn starch
+++++++++++++                  ‘1 kcal’ Fry spray (low-fat cooking oil)
++++++++++++++3g           Seasoning mix (Sweet paprika, Cayenne pepper & Dried Basil)
++++++++++++++30ml       Unsweetened Soya milk
++++++++++++++7g            Vegan (reduced fat) soya margarine
++++++++++++++                 Salt
++++++++++++++                 Pepper
++++++++++++++40G         Tomato Puree
++++++++++++++1g            Dried Thyme

NB: If using frozen vegetables, defrost them before use. 

 

Directions:

Wash and drain the lentils; remove any stones. Prepare the broth.

 

Place the broth into a large, non-stick saucepan over a medium heat. Add the lentils. Cook according to the packet instructions and then drain.

  Reserve 600ml of the cooking liquid before draining.

 

In the meantime, wash, peel and chop the potatoes into quarters. Place them into a separate, large saucepan full of cold water over a medium heat. Bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer. Cook for 15-20 minutes or until tender. Drain and leave to dry.

 

Meanwhile, peel and finely grate the garlic. Peel and chop the onions. Wash, trim the ends, peel and dice the carrots. Wash, remove the stem, de-seed and dice the bell pepper. Wash, dry and slice the mushrooms. Wash and drain the peas. Place the corn starch into a small dish. Add some cold water and stir/whisk until dissolved; creating a slurry.

Meanwhile, ladle out some cooking liquid and transfer it into a large measuring jug.

 

Heat another large non-stick saucepan over a medium-low heat. Spray with a little low-fat cooking oil. NB: Add a little of the reserved cooking liquid to help ‘steam-fry’ the vegetables. Add the garlic, onion, paprika, cayenne pepper and basil. Stir to coat. Gently fry for 1-2 minutes or until softened.

NB: I used 1g of each herb/spice to make the seasoning mix.

 

 

Add the carrot, bell pepper, mushrooms and a little more cooking liquid. Stir together. Cover and allow to steam-fry for a further 10 minutes; stirring occasionally. Add the peas 5 minutes before the end of cooking. Stir together.

 

Heat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Get out a large, heat-proof casserole dish.

 

 

In the meantime, prepare the mashed potato topping. Transfer the potatoes into a large mixing bowl (or use the same pot they were cooked in). Add the milk and margarine. Season it with some salt and pepper to taste. Mash until smooth and creamy.

NB: I didn’t want to scratch my pot so I used this plastic bowl; one more cooking utensil to wash at this point wasn’t going to make a difference!

 

 

 

Add the lentils, puree and the remaining cooking liquid into the saucepan. Stir together. Add the cornstarch mixture. Stir to combine. Stir and allow the mixture to thicken slightly; approximately 2-4 minutes. Remove from the heat.

NB: You might have to gently whisk the corn starch mixture again before adding it into the saucepan.

 

 

Transfer the mixture into the casserole dish.

 

 

Top with the potatoes.

NB: I gathered some with my hands, made ‘patties’ and gently placed them on top of the mixture. It really doesn’t take as long as it sounds!

 

 

Smooth with a silicone spatula, sprinkle over the thyme and roughen the surface with a fork.

 

 

Place into the oven. Bake for 30 minutes, or until boiling and slightly brown on top.

NB: Mine just started to bubble over but I caught it just in time ( I was attending to the queue of dishes)!

 

 

Serve warm in a lipped serving plate.

NB: This represents one serving. *Based on this meal serving four people.

 

 

Next day leftovers!

NB: Enjoy hot or cold with additional vegetables if desired. This portion was unheated and enjoyed straight from the fridge!

 

If preferred…

  • Use seasonal vegetables or any others you desire to create your favourite vegetable medley!
  • Substitute the lentils for prepared dehydrated soya mince or some beans.
  • Try using different herb and spice blends; use fresh if available and/or convenient.
  • If your not vegan, try adding a small portion of low-fat cheddar cheese into the mashed potatoes before baking.

Vegan Thai Yellow ‘Laska’ Soup With Rice Noodles

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 4
Prep & Cooking Time: 60 mins

Recipe adapted from: Elephantjournal.com

Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamin A, B-vitamins, Vitamins C & K, protein, fibre, iron, calcium, magnesium and potassium.

If you’re looking for an alternative cuisine… than look no further! This recipe is easy to execute (it doesn’t involve any frying) and packs so many wonderful textures and flavours! 

This soup is just under 300kcal/serving, but it still has 10g of saturated fat/serving (even with the reduced fat coconut milk). Plant-based diets are predominately healthy, but using coconut milks or oil, palm oils or cocoa butter can offer high intakes of saturated fats. Unfortunately, coconut oil, creamed coconut etc is made of approximately 90% saturated fat/100g.

We’re sure that when compared to some ‘authentic Thai meals’, it may be considered a ‘healthier’ option. We would recommend having a small portion, or try using half the amount of the reduced fat coconut milk and/or substitute it for unsweetened soya or almond milk; try making your own curry paste to also help reduce the amount of fat in this dish.

With any food or meal, just be mindful of the portion size and the overall fat/sugar/salt contents; all in moderation folks!

 

NB: We couldn’t source fresh lemon grass this week, so we have used a lemon grass paste instead.  We did not use the rapeseed oil. Also, this is NOT an advertisement for Amoy; the purchase of these items was solely influenced by their prices at the time of purchase.

 

Ingredients:

++++++++++++++++++++++++396g      Firm tofu
++++++++++++++++++++++++               ‘1 Kcal’ Spray (low-fat cooking oil)
++++++++++++++++++++++++100g       Carrot
++++++++++++++++++++++++60g         Fresh ginger root
++++++++++++++++++++++++2              Stalks of lemon grass (approx. 10g)
++++++++++++++++++++++++160g       Red bell pepper
++++++++++++++++++++++++100g       White mushrooms
++++++++++++++++++++++++40g         Spring onions
++++++++++++++++++++++++80g         Green beans
++++++++++++++++++++++++16g           Fresh basil
++++++++++++++++++++++++16g           Fresh Coriander
++++++++++++++++++++++++140g        Fresh bean sprouts
++++++++++++++++++++++++                Zest and juice of one lime
++++++++++++++++++++++++500ml    Vegetable stock (low-sodium, DF, GF)
++++++++++++++++++++++++400ml    Tin Reduced-fat coconut milk
++++++++++++++++++++++++30g         Thai yellow curry paste
++++++++++++++++++++++++300g       Rice noodles
++++++++++++++++++++++++10g           Peanuts (unsalted/not roasted)

NB: Check your rice noodles before cooking; do they need to be cooked or stir-fried before hand? Ours allowed us to add them straight into the soup to cook. Also, if you are using frozen vegetables, defrost them first.

 

Directions:

Open and drain the tofu. Press between two heavy chopping boards for 30 minutes to remove any excess water.

Heat the oven to 200°C (400°F). Line a baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper. Spray it with some low-fat cooking oil. Spread to coat.

In the meantime, prepare the vegetables. Wash, trim the ends, peel and then chop the carrot into ‘matchstick’ pieces. Wash, peel and chop the ginger into thin pieces. Wash, trim the ends, lightly crush with the back of a large spoon and then roughly chop the lemon grass. Wash, remove the stem, de-seed and thinly slice the bell pepper into strips.

Wash, pat dry and roughly slice the mushrooms. Wash, trim the ends and chop the onion into large pieces. Wash, trim the ends, and halve the beans. Wash, dry and roughly chop the basil and coriander. Wash and drain the bean sprouts. Wash, zest and then juice the lime. Prepare the vegetable stock.

Ingredients ready to go!

 

Meanwhile, drain and chop the tofu into bite-sized pieces. Place it onto the baking sheet. Lightly spray it with some low-fat cooking oil. Place it into the oven. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until lightly browned. TIP: You can refer to our previous recipe is you need some visual guidance for this step.

In the meantime, place a large non-stick saucepan over a medium heat. Add the stock, milk, carrot and ginger. Bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer. Add the lemon grass and curry paste. Stir to dissolve. Cover with a lid. Allow it to cook for 5 mins.

It smells delicious right from the start 🙂

 

 

Add the bell pepper, mushrooms, onion, beans, basil and coriander (save a little for garnishing if you like) to the pan. Bring back to the boil. Reduce to a simmer. Cook for 10 mins.

 

 

In the meantime, prepare the rice noodles according to the packet instructions (at this stage if required). Drain.

Add the bean sprouts and rice noodles into the soup. Cover with a lid. Allow to cook for a further 3-5 mins or until the rice noodles are tender.

NB: Our vegetable stock has turmeric in it; another reason it’s so vibrantly yellow!

 

 

In the meantime, roughly chop the nuts; you can see we have everything else ready to go!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

 

Remove from the heat. Pour in the juice. Add the tofu. Mix together gently.

 

 

We find because there is so much going on in the pot, it’s easier to use a spaghetti ladle to scoop out the larger pieces first….

 

 

…and then ladle the broth over it.

 

Once served, sprinkle over the zest (as mush as desired); top with the nuts and reserved coriander leaves (if using).

NB: The contents of this bowl represents 2 portions.

NB: The contents of this bowl represents 2 portions.

 

Enjoy!

If preferred…

  • Try different vegetables: pak choi, baby corn, water chestnuts, fresh red chillies, mange tout, sugar snap peas, red onion, fresh garlic, some torn baby spinach or maybe some cubed sweet potato or butternut squash.
  • Try using: fresh or dried Kaffir leaves instead of lime zest, Thai basil leaves instead of standard basil, fresh oyster or enoki mushrooms instead of standard white ones, replace the fresh lemon grass for a puree (if you can’t source the fresh variety or your trying to save money), or try brown basmati rice in place of the rice noodles.
  • Try making your own fresh curry paste (if you have the time) instead of using store bought varieties; this will help cut down on the salt and fat contents.
  • Add some fish sauce to the broth if you are not a vegan/vegetarian (but be mindful of the salt content).