Back to school and no fuss midweek meals

It’s time to breathe a sigh of relief that the long Christmas holiday is over and the teens are back to school. Although it does come with the added stress of early morning starts and the inevitable rushing around to make dinner as soon as I walk into the house at night due to the constant calls of  ‘I’m starving….whats for dinner?’! I know that i have spoilt my boys with good food and home cooked meals every night… The plus is that they eat absolutely everything and are fun to cook for and dine with… the negative is that their expectations are high! Ready meals, takeaways and convenience food are not an option, although Dominoes is a treat they love to have when their friends are over. At least now they are relatively self sufficient at lunchtimes and will cook or ‘find’ food themselves – the lunchtime staple this holiday was either instant noodles (indomie) with a fried egg and spring onions on top or  toasted sandwiches with brie and chutney…or cheddar cheese & kimchi (actually delicious!) So my challenge is always to come up with tasty healthy food which is super quick to prepare…. and doesn’t involve huge amounts of washing up afterwards! Midweek meals are all about one pot/pan wonders.

Earlier this week, using some tofu, spring greens and leftover Miso Marinade, I made a version of a Malaysian favourite, fried Koay Teow – Rice noodles. Heavy on the veg, light on the noodles, and nowhere near as oily as you would find in the street stalls. The tofu was marinaded for about 30 mins and then panfried before cutting into cubes, which added flavour and depth to the dish. This recipe is based on my fried noodles in an earlier blog post  (Just soak the dried rice noodles before cooking in hot water until they are soft).

Knowing my fridge was almost empty, last night i racked my brains to come up with something using what was in my fridge and cupboards..i didn’t have time to do a ‘top up’ shop. I sometimes make a really delicious Peter Gordon dish of roasted chicken, sweet potato and lemon, so I thought that I could try to recreate something similar with the chicken breasts, cavolo nero, sweet potato and red onion I already had.

Wash 3 large sweet potatoes, keeping the skin on, and cut into large chunks.

Slice 1 large red onion. Mix with the sweet potato and 2 Tbs Olive oil and a sprinkling of salt, along with 1/2 tsp of Za’atar and Sumac. Put this into a roasting pan and into a hot over 220 degrees C.

Cut 3 chicken breasts in half and marinate for 20 mins with 2 Tbs Pomegranate Molasses, 1 tsp Za’atar, juice of half lemon, a drizzle of olive oil and some salt. Add to the part cooked sweet potatoes and onions and mix. Put back in the oven.

Take one packet of Cavolo Nero, wash and cut into rough slices. When the chicken/sweet potato is almost done (about 15 mins from the chicken going into the oven), put this cavolo nero on top, drizzle with about 1 Tbs of pomegranate molasses and some olive oil and salt. Cook for a further 10 minutes on high  heat until the Cavolo Nero is a little crisp on the edges, and just cooked.

Toss everything together gently and squeeze over 1/2 lemon, another drizzle of pomegranate molasses and 1 tsp of Za’atar. I then added a few spoonful of greek yoghurt and let it amalgamate with the heat of the dish. I served this in the roasting pan I cooked it in… not only easy but it means you don’t leave behind all the delicious juices on the bottom of the pan.

A very easy and delicious supper… packed full of superfoods, high GI and low carb too.

 

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