Easy Moroccan Chicken one pot meal

The chill in the air is just right for warming one pot meals. Make them healthy, quick and easy to put together and you have a winner on your hands.Last year at the Cake and Bake show which I attended with a dear friend and fellow blogger ,  I ended up spending a bomb (£££!!!!) on four different sized pots – non – stick being one of their biggest virtues.One of them is a huge wok which I intend to use to make a stir fry over the weekend. The coating is said to last for years and each vessel comes with a glass lid. I can apparently also shove them directly into the oven but haven’t tried that yet. The big and rather saucepan is what I use as my crock pot for making one pot meals in. In fact there is something very comforting watching a warming curry or gorgeously tasty and nutritious one pot meals!

heaven in a saucepan - healthy , happy meals begin here!

Ok so coming back to my one pot recipe. I had a bag of baby spinach leaves in my fridge and was craving a wholesome soupy stew with lots of vegetables. So managed to gather a few things that I think would taste great together and then added in Knorr onion gravy pots and Knorr mixed chilli pot for flavour and the result was so very satisfying.  But the best part was adding in Ras El Hanout a delicious and fiery moroccan and North African fragrant spice mix. The delicate dried rose petals look so pretty , that’s why I decided to name my dish Moroccan Chicken one pot.I also devoured it for lunch today – umm.

 Moroccan Chicken one pot meal

Make this in a large quantity and it will freeze well. Batch cooking is highly recommended as it saves you time and ensures that you do not eat things that you will end up regretting when you are hard pressed for time and simply cannot cook.The freezer is a wonderful boon, use it!

I purchased a beautiful Red Leicester and Pumpkin seed batard to go with my meal – it is soul-satisfying to mop up the thick gravy with the bread while sitting on the couch watching my fav crime show on the telly, feeling all warm and happy.

The best part of this recipe is I haven’t added in potatoes or extra sugar to taste and yet the flavours are so well balanced. (Though both gravy pots do contain sugar) I love stocking up on these tiny Knorr flavour pots they are life-savers!

A recipe with enough spinach to make Popeye jump with joy! Spinach has several health benefits and is known to be a great source of folic acid and several essential vitamins and great levels of iron too. Best part is a big bag of spinach can be consumed in no time as the leaves are high in water content and it reduces in size when cooked.

 Moroccan Chicken one pot meal

Easy Moroccan Chicken one pot

Serves:4  Preparation Time: 10 minutes  Cooking time: approx 25 minutes

Ingredients:

  • Olive oil 2 tbsp
  • 1 large red onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • Mixed bag of broccoli, carrot and cauliflower – 270 gm
  • Chicken thighs – 500 gm – appox 3 big pieces
  • Trimmed green beans – 75 gm
  • Chestnut Mushrooms – 4 – 5
  • 1.5 Knorr onion gravy flavour pot
  • 1 Knorr mixed chillies flavour pot
  • 4 handfulls of spinach leaves
  • Red lentils – without skin and halved 3/4th cup
  • 1/2 tsp of Ras El Hanout
  • 1/2 tsp of roasted cumin powder
  • Water

Method:

  • Remove the skin from the chicken thighs after washing thoroughly under running water.
  • Chop the chicken thighs to make strips of the flesh leaving just enough on the bone.
  • Wash and cut the broccoli, carrots,cauliflower, green beans and chestnut mushrooms bits into bite sized pieces.
  • Slice an onion lengthwise into fine strips.
  • Remove the skin from the garlic cloves and chop into tiny bits.
  • In a large saucepan or stock pot heat olive oil on a medium flame, when the oil becomes to heat up add the finely chopped garlic and saute’ until they turn a golden brown then add in the sliced onion.
  • Stirring occasionally allow the onion to sweat and just when it begins to brown add in the chopped vegetables and saute for half a minute.
  • Then add in the chicken thighs and saute for another minute.
  • Then wash and add the red lentils , add enough water to create a thick gravy – enough to allow the lentils to cook and not soak up all the water. Then add in the Knorr flavour pots and mix well.

Big, beautiful pot of healthy goodness - absolutely irresistible!

  • Then add the washed spinach leaves, cumin powder and cover and cook on a medium flame for 15 minutes.

Gorgeous Bowl of goodness with immunity boosting spinach and delicious veggies

  • By now the lentils will have cooked and the chicken will almost be done too.
  • Then taste the soupy water and if it is too spicy add just a very tiny pinch the Ras El Hanout , I added 1/2 a tsp as the taste reminded me of garam masala. Ras El Hanout is a moroccan mixture of fragrant spices with rose petals and gives the stock pot a gorgeous full bodied flavour.
  • Cook for a further 10-15 minutes on a gentle low flame.
  • Serve in large bowls with a big portion of the pumpkin batard bread.

Moroccan Chicken one pot meal recipe

Have linked up my recipe with the #NoWasteFoodChallenge hosted by the lovely Elizabeth who blogs at Elizabeth’s Diary. Find out all about this challenge in her blog post here.

Elizabeth's Kitchen Diary

In my Veg Box – May 2014 Round up – Theme – Cauliflowers

Ok its that time to share the roundup for the May linky for ”In my Veg Box” an event run by Nayna Kanabar of Citrus Spice UK. The theme was  Cauliflowers and I am happy to say that a large variety of recipes were created by you and shared.Read on and enjoy,theres even an award winning recipe in here by Nayna!

My very first entry is from Sudha Neelam from her blog ‘Spicy Quiry Serendipitous’ .Her cauliflower and chickpeas stew recipe  is a spicy,thick,zingy recipe with thai red paste and comforting coconut milk .This scientist mum has shared a very beautiful part about her life and who all working mothers experience separation anxiety, reminds me of how my sister got back to work after having both her kids ,especially after her first baby when she braved Mumbai rains, the rush hour on her train journey and really slogged hard.She is my friend ,my philosopher and guide , but mostly she is someone I admire deeply for her steely determination, her ability to keep her family together and still achieve loads in her career.

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Next up is a very easy and tasty recipe for Cauliflower and green peas curry by Nayna on her blog Citrus Spice UK.This robustly flavoured curry is a fabulous addition to any menu, just as good with a hot roti as it is with rice or pulav ,a very worthy addition on the menu when hosting a vegetarian dinner party I think.

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Another cool link up from Nayna , her recipe for ‘Spicy Cauliflower Tempura’  won her the runner up prize in the National Vegetarian week– Betta Living ,held during 19-25 May 2014. Nayna winning entry got her a whooping prize money of  £250 prize! woohoo! Well done Nayna! Proof that cauliflowers rocks and vegetarian recipes are far from boring and actually require more creativity and culinary expertise to create flavour from simple ingredients! I also think the photo below is really beautifully done,agree?

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Linsy who blogs at Real Home Cooked Food has shared a tangy pickle based recipe for Aachari Cauliflower, Chana and Corn / Cauliflower , Chickpeas and Corn in Pickle spices. I love using pickle as marinade for my meat dishes and cauliflower take sup the flavours so readily it is a satisfying eat this dish am sure.

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After a stew and a tempura a manchurian recipe is up next.Cauliflower(Gobhi) Manchurian in Knorr Chinese Schezuan Sauce from the blog Hobby Chef  uses a store bought powdered packet sauce. Though the manchurian sauce is from a packet it looks really yummy and I’ve always like Knorr’s recipe mixes , a quick fix for days when you just can’t be bothered with making a sauce from scratch I guess, with my current crazy schedule and a cold from hell I could do with some warm soup made NOT by me 😉

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When I was in North Wales, hubster and I had fish and chips with a curry sauce at a dingy little place, the chips were blah but the curry sauce was super fab , ever since its stuck in some corner of my brain and everytime I pass by a fish and chip shop that does a fairly decent job I wonder if they have curry sauce on their menu.This Cauliflower Curry Sauce by Linzi of Lancashire is a minefield of all things good and wholesome. Its no fat,high fibre, can be made ahead and frozen for saving the day at a later date and is a fabulous way to hide veggies in a tasty sauce, if that wasn’t enough it is a versatile sauce which will go with meat ,fish or veggie curries.

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Up next another fabulous sauce this time a Hidden Cauliflower Cheese Pasta Sauce by Elizabeth of Elizabeth’s Kitchen Diary.I just happened to heard in great detail her about me section and discovered that we have both done our B.Sc in Lifesciences! I also went on to do a year of Masters in Biochemistry which I ditched and went for a MBA in Marketing when I realised I didn’t want to sit in a lab and talk to test tubes which I had named with characters from a fav sitcom 😉 Another beautiful food photo for the round up and another great recipe for making in extra portions and saving a mid week meal !

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Another gem of a recipe from Sudha our scientist mommy blogger who has taken culinary creativity to a fab new level with this dish! Kudos to her! Her recipe for Hidden Surprises – Cauliflower Stems with Potatoes is easy but she got there after one failed experiment. Inmy mind she has 2 labs one at her work and one her kitchen 🙂 Go give this fab recipe a try NOW! I know I am 🙂

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Shobhas Bengali style recipe for Bengali Style Cauliflower with Poppy seeds & Mustard Paste is simple curry but packed with earthy moorish flavours.I thoroughly enjoy Bengali food and a big fan of seafood which am sure you know by now if your read my post regularly.

Jagrutis recipe for Spiced & baked cauliflower bhaja from her blog the Turmeric Kitchen came about as a result of being forced to rest up a sprained ankle hence its something that can be created in a flash and am sure will taste brill. I love the aroma of roasted cauli and roasted garlic.

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Nayna innovative recipe for Spicy Cauliflower Couscous is a clever way to use this versatile vegetable with a small amount of spices and get something yummy on the plate for everyone to enjoy.

Spicy cauliflower couscous 1b

Another cool link up by Shobha who blogs at FoodMazaa , her Punjabi Pickle recipe is a lovely traditional recipe from the northern part of India. Pickles are to be stored for flavours to develop. I remember eating this with great relish at a Punjabi freinds place when I stayed over during my MBA final exams, I always tried to sneak in some extra pickle on my plate 😉

Another recipe for Achaari Gobhi ( Pickled Cauliflower) this time by Sarika is adapted from Sanjeev Kapoors original.

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Helen who blogs at Famly Friends and food has shared a beautiful Cauli Risotto with crispy eggs recipe ,I love eggs in any form and risotto is my go to comfort food when I am in the mood for a creamy delicious treat.

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Another recipe from Helen this time a Cauliflower with anchovy and garlic , very unusual combination with anchovies I must say !

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Sonal who blogs at simplyvegetarian777 has shared a recipe for Crunchy Gobhi Tandoori .Great idea for a summer BBQ party don’t you think ?

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Lastly my everyday recipe for a vegetable I like to have at least once a week with warm soft chapatis.

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I hope that this round up leaves you inspired to experiment with cauliflower and try any one of the many lovely recipes.

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Thanks to Nayna for letting me host this exciting linky event.
In my veg box cauliflower

 

In my Veg Box: Cauliflowers – Recipe Linky Challenge

Am back in May with another exciting challenge !This month, I am guest hosting In My Veg Box, an event run by Nayna Kanabar of Citrus Spice UK. This month’s theme is Cauliflowers.

Cauliflower – ”The kale of 2014, the budget-friendly superfood, the most underrated vegetable” is what the Huff Post,Canada mentions in a recent article about 10 health benefits of cauliflower.

Did you know that Cauliflower is an aid to weight loss! Yes! That’s why its the new kale and tastes much better too, don’t you think? My favourite new way to use cauliflower creatively is by shredding it in a food processor and cooking it with some water in a microwave as a replacement for rice.

Cauliflower is bursting with various vitamins like  Vit B and C , potassium and phosphorous that can support your body’s repair and maintenance of the nervous system, immune system, muscles and bones.

Its name is from Latin caulis (cabbage) and flower.

A brassica, like cabbage and broccoli, cauliflower is a mass of tiny, tightly packed flower heads (called curds), which grow from a thick central stem to form a single, round head, cupped by green leaves. It has a firm, almost waxy texture, and a mild, delicate flavour. Most cauliflowers are white, but it’s also possible to find green and purple varieties, as well as the sweeter Romanesco cauliflower, with its distinctive pointed florets.The orange cauliflower is also rich in beta-carotene and vitamin A.

I tasted the orange and purple coloured variants of cauliflower for the first time a few years back and my love affair with the beautiful Romanesco cauliflower has only just begun! Did you know that the English call romanesco – broccoli, the French – cabbage and the Germans and the Poles – cauliflower. Some of the undecided place it somewhere between broccoli and cauliflower. Taking into account its shape, romanesco rosettes bring to mind the pyramids or minaret towers, the theory, that it fell out of a flying saucers would seem to be rather interesting.

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Acc to the BBC Good Food Guide:  Like all brassicas, cauliflower smells very unpleasant if overcooked, so brief cooking is essential.

With me and my hubster cauliflower and green peas bhaji made using a simple hand me down recipe from my aai (mother in Marathi, my mother tongue) is a firm favourite.I make it atleast once a week. My aai, my sister and her kids love it too, we are a veggie friendly family that way!

If all this has not put you in the mood for cooking up something interesting or simple and easy with cauliflower then what will?! 😉

So get cooking,clicking and link up but first a few rules! I know , I know RULES.. But  I promise the rules are dead easy to follow!

Rules to Participate:

  1. Please prepare any vegetarian recipes using Cauliflowers and link your dish to the linky code below. You will need  to enter the name of your dish, as well as the url of your blog.
  2. Current theme is CAULIFLOWER.
  3. You must link this post to Sliceoffme and to Citrus Spice UK.
  4. Use of the logo is not mandatory but it helps to spread the word if you can use it.
  5. Multiple entries are allowed.
  6. Archived entries are also allowed, only if they are re-posted and updated with this event link, as well as the Citrus Spice UK link.
  7. Recipes must be added to the linky by 31st May 2014.

In the event of any problems with using the linky code, please email me your entry to fruitsnveg@yahoo.com. Please include your name, recipe name, url and an image no larger than 300 pixels.

Thank you! Can’t wait to see variety of recipes that I am sure are possible with the humble cauliflower! Get Cooking Bloggers!

In my veg box cauliflower

References: Wiki,Huffington Post Canada,Bonduelle

In my veg Box – Theme Cauliflowers – all entries.

Spicy Chorizo Pasta with loads of veggie goodness!

I often struggle to get the hubster to consume hero veggies like Broccoli and Mushrooms ,both which I quite frankly love .. always have ! So what started off as a veg pasta was met with a grunt and audible grumbling and had to be re-engineered to create something fabulous ! I am therefore grateful for the grumbling  – totally depends on the end result right? 😉 Its also a very good recipe to use all the veggies lying around in your fridge and many some store cupboard excesses to start that spring clean you have been itching to do ( yes I love cleaning – am quite certain I have a mild OCD too)

Preparation Time: 25 minutes Cooking Time:40 minutes Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 500 gm Penne
  • 300 gm Chorizo chopped bite size
  • Broccoli a handful
  • Button Mushrooms – half a small packet – std supermarket size-chopped bite size
  • 200 gm Sweet Corn and Red Peppers canned
  • Grated parmesan Cheese – generous amount;)
  • 1/2 of a large Red Onion
  • 4 cloves of garlic finely chopped
  • 2 large tomatoes pureed
  • Sea salt
  • 2 large tablespoons Olive Oil
  • Chilli flakes as per taste
  • 2 large Spring onion finely chopped
  • 1/4th cup low fat cream
  • Dried italian herb mix for pasta 2 teaspoons

Method:

For the creamy sauce

  • In a saucepan heat one and a half large tablespoon of oil and saute the finely chopped garlic and when it begins to brown add 2 cloves of garlic chopped spring onion and saute for about 1 min
  • Then added the finely chopped broccoli
  • Now add the chopped button mushrooms and the sweet corn and red pepper mixture.
  • Add the cream and cook on a low flame for 2 – 3 minutes,season with salt  and then add generous amounts of cheese.
  • This sauce should have a balance between creamy and chewy with the mushrooms on the broccoli can retain a bit of its crunch so if you use a lid it may overcook

Before starting on the spicy sauce boil the past in a large saucepan and add sea salt and olive  a generous splash I use flavoured oil – the bottle had a large sprig of rosemary some crushed garlic and chilli flakes tossed inside to give it a deep rich flavour- so , so good!

For the Spicy Sauce

  • In a saucepan heat half a tablespoon of oil and fry the red onion chopped lengthwise and 2 garlic cloves finely chopped.
  • Then add the bite  sized pieces of Chorizo and reduce the flame to low.
  • Let the chorizo almost start to get crispy and  then added the pureed tomatoes,dried herb mixture,chilli flakes and salt as per taste.

In a clean bowl add a generous portion of the creamy sauce, top it with cooked pasta and then add the spicy chorizo sauce.Sprinkle with as much cheese as you want and watch it melt into the steaming hot pasta.If you want just a bit of guilty pleasure drizzle some chilli olive oil on the pasta before mixing the whole thing together!

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