Ceylonese chicken curry

Food mean different things to different people, personally food is health, food is habit, culture, identity, comfort, nourishment, colour, beautiful and tasty!

My love for good food goes beyond borders, firstly nourishment but tasty too! if you know me personally this won’t be news to you.

This recipe is a healthy twist to the regular chicken ceylon. I have tweaked it to suit our nutritional needs and taste buds ( spicey!), I added legume (chickpeas) a good source of protein and fibre, frozen peas , a case of making the best of your store cupboard and fridge essentials.

I was a bit unsure if the kids would like it, as they would not normally have peas or any strong texture in their curry. But as a parent i take it seriously to let my kids learn how to appreciate and enjoy meal times. Interestingly, it worked so well. They loved it and my 5 years old who would normally pick out any sign of vegetable in his plate was happy with it and said ”peas” are my favourite vegetables mummy.. phew! We’ve gone from being allergic to vegetables to ”favourites” now… so glad ( will save you the story today).. As a mom with former picky eaters ( fingers crossed) I can say that exposing kids enough times to different flavours and textures the right way will more likely make them try new foods. Don’t be afraid to play around with textures and flavours, that’s a good way to get started.

Other vegetables in this recipe are; onions, fresh turmeric, celery, carrots, ginger, garlic , peppers and tomatoes. these work well for that perfect home made curry paste. trust me once you’ve tried making your base from scratch, you’ll never go back to the shop bought ones.

Fresh vegetables
Home made curry paste

This recipe is loaded with aromatic spices and a lovely mixture of coconut and cashew flavour with chilli ! gives this dish it’s dreamy creamy texture you won’t forget in a hurry, please if you do cook this curry be sure not to miss the coconut and cashew unless you have nut allergies.

It’s a good combination of nutrition and taste.. healthy is not boring and bland!

Unsalted Cashew nuts

We know life can be so busy and it is no doubt taking its toll on our health and wellbeing, eating a nutritious diet and maintaining a healthy weight is increasingly difficult for most of us thanks to takeaways too. This is not to make it normal or judge anyone but just to recognise how our fast paced life impacts our health and wellbeing. Eating out all the time not only affects our budget but has serious health implications like not meeting recommended dietary intakes of key nutrients which can later lead to nutrient deficiencies and weakened immune systems .

It’s no news that poor diet low in fruits and vegetables can predispose one to diet related conditions e.g type 2 diabetes, heart problems , stroke, high blood pressure and some types of cancer. I can’t share my story of type 2 diabetes enough, one of the reasons i started this platform was to share my food experience and journey with the hope to inspire a positive shift in food culture as well as keep myself accountable.

As a busy working mom of 3 , One of the ways i have managed to keep on top my diet and that of my family is to plan our meals, I am a big believer of batch cooking and freezing, you not only save cost, you save kitchen time and importantly able to eat a nutritious balanced meal at least few times a week depending on batch size. Any way of squeezing in more vegetables into your diet counts!

This recipe is freezer friendly and loaded with more than 5 of your at least 5 servings of vegetables. Let’s get cooking!

Note: Play around with the strength of the spices to suit you.

Ingredients

  1. pack of chicken breast fillets(500g)
  2. 1 tsp chilli ( adjust heat as you like)
  3. 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  4. 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  5. 1/2 tsp fenugreek or mustard seeds
  6. 1/4 tsp ground fennel
  7. 1/4 tsp cloves
  8. 1/4 tsp cardamom
  9. 1 stick dry cinnamon
  10. tbsp olive oil
  11. fresh curry leaves
  12. 2 organic reduced salt chicken stock cubes
  13. Tin canned chickpeas
  14. 300g frozen peas

Paste: 2 medium onion, 4 cloves fresh garlic, 2cm fresh ginger, 2cm fresh turmeric, 4 carrots, 3 sticks celery, 1 red bell pepper, canned tomatoes and 2 tbsp tomato paste. put all these together in a food processor, add 1 tbsp olive oil and blend to a smooth paste and set aside. You can add the cashews and blend together or blend separately (whatever works for you)

Blended cashew and coconut cream

You can make this in batch and freeze for future use .(saves time)

Method

  1. Heat the remaining olive oil in a pan, add curry leaves and fenugreek or mustard seeds, fry till fragrant , then add chicken breast pieces and coat all over, cook for about 5 mins.
  2. Transfer paste into, throw in cinnamon stick cover pot and simmer for 10 mins .
Curry paste
  1. then pour in coconut cream, blended cashew nut, chickpeas and peas cook for further 5 mins and take off the hob.
  1. Enjoy with your meal base of choice. Rice, quinoa, cauliflower rice, beans, potatoes, chapati, naan bread or pitta bread.

Happy cooking!

Cardamom- Garlic-ginger chicken stir fry

Here’s a stir-fry recipe that takes just 20mins to put together, you’ll love it! an example of flavour explosion that you won.’t forget in a hurry, It  is Citrusy, minty, spicy, musty, herbal and sweet . thanks to the cardamom, ginger, garlic and chili , you will taste all of these flavours in every bite!  Plus the crunch of the baby corn and mangetout!( snow pea)  All these in 20 minutes!  Enjoy!

I would recommend using coconut aminos in this recipe, as it is a healthier alternative to your regular soy sauce, it is soy and gluten free ( great for people with soy and gluten allergy) and has a low GI which means your blood sugar is not spiked ,it is also packed with 17 different amino acids the building block of protein which is vital for body building and repair. Great stuff!

Remember the idea behind healthy cooking and eating lifestyle is to as much as we possibly can , eat in ways that promotes the best health for us and this might mean reading ingredients label, understand how the contents might impact us. Then swapping to closest alternative and this is what I tend to practice, again this might not be for everyone. That being said, I have used worcestershire sauce in this recipe because that’s what I had at hand ( ran out of coconut aminos)

I have also used a lot of ginger in this stirfry , this is mainly to do with my choice of base , chinese lettuce! have you ever wanted salad but didn’t want it cold? looking for a hug in poor ol salad?? this exactly how to get that much needed hug in a salad, all the flavours will mask the presence or the absence of the base. This is a go to bowl when you’re trying to stay light ( tracking your makros) or not very active. If you don’t like ginger, that’s OK!  You can still try it but go easy on the amount of ginger that you add to it. You might just end up loving it!  

Can’t manage spicy food? don’t worry just de- seed the chilli once you have cut the chili in half; and then cut them into thin strips.

Don’t have cardamom?? Ok! ginger and garlic are a good pair and would still give you a flavour burst, but the combination of cardamom, ginger and garlic in this stir fry is what makes it unique. again nothing is set on stone , cooking is all about being creative, feel free to play around with what you have at hand.

Other serving suggestions( depending on your health goals): steamed coarse bulgur wheat, quinoa, cauliflower rice, salad, brown rice, or white rice.

Let’s get cooking!!

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3-4 cardamom seeds
  • 1 onion grated
  • 100 grams chicken breast strips
  • 1 tbsp worcestershire sauce
  • 2.5cm ginger peeled and grated
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 pack stirfry kit ( tender stem broccoli, baby corn, mangetout and bok choy/ pak choi)
  • 2 pcs fresh red and green chilies, thinly sliced.
  • 1\2bunch of chinese lettuce sliced( optional base)

Method

  1. Place a pan over medium-high heat.Add olive oil on pan.
  2. Allow oil to heat up a bit then add garlic, onion, cardamom and ginger Cook until fragrant. 3mins( save some ginger for later)
  3. Then add the chicken and cook on each side until nicely firm (about 10mins)
  4. Add worcestershire sauce and all the vegetables and Stir fry until chicken is fully cooked.( 5mins) then add the remaining ginger and stir for another 2mins
  5. Take off the hob and serve with base of choice!

enjoy!

click link for printable recipe https://sites.google.com/site/healthfulnonyecom/cardamom-garlic-ginger-chicken-stirfry

Chicken chow mein

Here’s a 15mins easy week night dinner idea that is deliciously satisfying, a healthier twist to the original Chinese chicken chow mein.
interestingly guilt free and under 500kcal . Healthy eating is not at all boring, it involves a bit of getting creative, for me it means eating the world, the more diverse, the more nutrients you harvest and the healthier you get. you can still enjoy your favourite comfort meal by simply swapping the ingredients to healthier alternatives closer to what you are used to .

I find organic Edamame spaghetti/noodle to be a better pasta alternative, it is gluten free(great option for those with gluten allergy) ever since I discovered it, it’s been a keeper. if you click on featured recipe in my home page you will find another Edamame spaghetti recipe with a much detailed information about the nutritional content (it will be worth checking).

https://healthfulnonye.com/2018/08/05/organic-edamame-spaghetti-in-cherry-tomato-sauce-with-pan-seared-salmon-fillet/

Having said that, shirataki noodles also works very well with this recipe. it might be worth trying other alternatives out there, sure there are a lot of them now. Any noodles will do this job so well! So the next time a craving for Chinese food strikes , whip up this recipe in just 15mins and you will be glad you did.

//pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/js/adsbygoogle.js (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({});

So, Let’s get cooking!

Notes: feel free to try other vegetables( baby corn, fine bean, bean sprouts etc , frozen versions will work just fine too. play around with meat types as well. This recipe is also adaptable to vegetarian or vegan.

Difficulty: easy

INGREDIENTS-

  • 100g chicken breast
  • 80g organic edamame spaghetti (cook according to instruction on pack)
  • 1/2 Pack of mushroom ( washed and sliced)
  • 100g Bok choy/ Pak choy
  • 1 Carrot ( peeled and sliced)
  • 2 Cloves garlic-Red and green pepper( deseeded &chopped)
  • 1 Scotch bonnet (optional)
  • 1 onion /shallot/spring onion
  • 1 cm fresh ginger ( peeled and grated)
  • 1 Teaspoon soy sauce or coconut amino
  • 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

Method
1- Heat oil in a skillet and stir fry chicken, onion,  garlic, and ginger till fragrant


2- Add remaining vegetables, soy sauce and pepper. reduce heat and cook for 3mins to soften vegetables
3- Add spaghetti to the vegetable mix,  stir well and cook for another 3mins Then turn off the hob and  Serve just enough and enjoy

//pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/js/adsbygoogle.js (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({});

Printable recipe- click on link https://sites.google.com/site/healthfulnonyecom/chicken-chow-mein