Paella

A friend at work asked me if I could post my recipe for paella so here it is 😊 I cooked the whole chicken thighs separately last night and added them at the end but usually I cook the meat in the pan at the start. It’s a very versatile meal- sometimes I omit the prawns and other times I add a seafood mix. I especially love serving it at the table in my large cast iron pan as it reminds me of seeing paella being cooked at Spanish markets.

Paella

Serves 4 (large portions!)

INGREDIENTS

8 chicken thighs

1 red pepper, roughly chopped

1 red onion, roughly chopped

1 chorizo ring, sliced

2 tbsp olive oil

2 cloves of garlic, crushed

1 tsp paprika

1 tsp smoked paprika

1 tsp dried thyme

1 pinch of dried chilli flakes

Seasoning

350g paella rice

1.75 pints of chicken stock

3 tbsp frozen peas

14 cherry tomatoes, halved

200g cooked king prawns

METHOD

1. Cook the chicken thighs in the oven at 190oC for 45 minutes. Once cooked remove from the oven and set aside.

2. While the chicken is cooking, fry the onions, pepper and chorizo in the olive oil for 5 minutes.

3. Add the garlic, spices and thyme and fry for a further minute.

4. Season and stir in the paella rice ensuring it gets coated in oil.

5. Pour in 1 pint of the chicken stock and the frozen peas and simmer for around 25 minutes.

6. Keep an eye on the paella rice, stirring occasionally to ensure it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan.

7. Top up with the chicken stock every so often when it starts getting a bit dry so the rice is submerged.

8. After 20 minutes add the cooked prawns and stir through.

9. Most of the stock should have been added (you may need to add more/less- taste the rice to see if it’s cooked). Finish by stirring through the tomatoes and giving them a couple of minutes to warm up.

10. Serve with the cooked chicken thighs on top.

Fajitas!

Homemade fajitas!!! You can’t beat a fajita can you?! 🤤 I used to buy the kits but for the last year or so I make them from scratch as the chicken fajita seasoning is so simple to make and the guacamole and salsa are so much tastier made fresh. The @morrisons mexican rice was a cheat but it was really tasty and only cost 47p!

Fajita chicken

I fry 3/4 sliced chicken breasts with sliced red onion and pepper and then sprinkle on around half a tsp of cayenne pepper, paprika, smoked paprika and cumin. Then I add a pinch of dried chilli flakes and a little water to stop it sticking.

Salsa

The salsa is simply 4 chopped salad tomatoes, with 1 small onion diced, the juice of half a lime, a pinch of dried chilli flakes and a small handful of fresh coriander chopped.

Guacamole

Chop 2 avocados, squeeze half a lime over, add 1 small crushed garlic clove, a handful of chopped fresh coriander, a pinch of chilli flakes and seasoning. Roughly mash with a fork.

Basa and Chorizo Bake

If you’ve seen my meal plan for this week you’ll know this was supposed to be haddock and chorizo bake but unfortunately we couldn’t find any of the haddock fillets in the freezer section at @Lidl so we chose basa instead but any white fish would work. I really like having the cook from frozen fillets in as they’re such a life saver when I’ve forgotten to take anything out of the freezer! 🙈🤣 I made this for three of us so up the amount of fish if you’re cooking for more and add an extra tin of tomatoes.

Basa and Chorizo Bake

Serves 3

INGREDIENTS

350g new potatoes, halved

1 red onion, chopped

1 red/orange pepper, chopped

100g chorizo, skin removed and sliced

1 tbsp olive oil

1 garlic clove, crushed

Seasoning

3 sprigs of fresh thyme

400g chopped tomatoes

380g @lidl frozen basa fillets

METHOD

1. Preheat the oven to 180oC.

2. Parboil the potatoes for 10 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, fry the chorizo in the oil to release it’s flavour.

4. Add the onion and pepper and fry gently until soft.

5. Add the garlic and cook for a further 1 minute.

6. Drain the potatoes and add to the pan, stir to coat in the oil. Cook for another 3 minutes until beginning to brown.

7. Sprinkle in the thyme leaves and season.

8. Pour in the tomatoes and stir.

9. Put the fish fillets on top and cook in the oven according to their instructions.

10. Serve!

Karahi Curry Night

You can’t beat a slow cooker curry night! This is as quick and simple as it gets. Just veg, a jar of sauce and chicken. Dead easy and the smell when you walk in through the front door after a long day at work is divine. Serve with microwave rice and naan and it can be on the table in no time.

I put 1 chopped onion and 1 chopped pepper in the slow cooker with 5 skinless and boneless chicken thighs. Poured over @morrisons karahi sauce and cooked on low for 11 hours. Served with @morrisons pilau rice and @lidl peshawari naan bread.

Sundried Tomato, Pepper and Chilli Pasta

Super quick and easy meal tonight. I made it for three of us so up the ingredients if you want to serve more.

Serves 3

INGREDIENTS

6 sun-dried tomatoes in oil

10 cherry tomatoes, halved

1 red/yellow pepper, chopped

1 red onion, chopped

1/2 tsp crushed chillis

200g mozzarella, drained and cubed

Fresh basil

Seasoning

1 tbsp olive oil

300g pasta (I used @morrisons trottole)

METHOD

1. Finely chop the sun-dried tomatoes in a food processor with a little of the oil from the jar.

2. Cook the pasta according to the instructions.

3. Gently fry the onion and pepper in the oil until soft and golden. Turn off the heat. Add the chilli.

4. Add the tomatoes and stir.

5. Drain the pasta and put back in it’s pan.

6. Stir in the finely chopped sun-dried tomatoes and cubed mozzarella.

7. Season again if necessary and serve with torn basil on top.

Peanut Chicken Noodles

Here’s my peanut chicken stir-fry, an adaption of Tom Kerridge recipe as I decided not to buy the chilli oil, rice wine vinegar, tahini, Sichuan peppercorns and peanuts- it was just going to be too expensive and also wasteful as I know many of these ingredients would have gathered dust in my cupboard! I used sesame seeds that I had in instead of the peanuts to garnish the stir-fry.

I invested in an @oxo good grips julienne peeler to get the carrot and cucumber thinly sliced- it was really easy to use. The cucumber was really nice to sprinkle on the stir-fry before eating, not something I’ve done before but I’ll definitely do it again.

Peanut chicken stir-fry

Serves 4

Peanut sauce

3 tbsp crunchy peanut butter

2 tbsp clear honey

3 tbsp soy sauce

1 tbsp sriracha sauce

2cm minced ginger

2 cloves garlic, crushed

3 tbsp water

660g udon noodles

2 tbsp sesame oil

3 chicken breasts, cut into strips

200g mange tout

2 carrots, cut into thin strips

4 spring onions, sliced at an angle

1 red pepper, thinly sliced

Garnish

1/4 cucumber, thinly sliced

Sesame seeds

1. Cook the noodles in boiling water for 2 minutes, then drain and put in cold water.

2. Mix all the peanut sauce ingredients together and set aside.

3. Heat the oil in a wok and add the chicken. Cook for 5 minutes on a high heat.

4. Add the carrots, mange tout, pepper and spring onion and fry for another 2 minutes.

5. Drain the noodles and add them to the wok together with the peanut sauce. Toss gently and heat through for a few minutes.

6. Serve with the cucumber and sesame seeds on top.