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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Tuscan Tuna Pasta

Every family needs a collection of quick no think dinners and this one of them! 

It is so simple Riley who is 4.5 years old put it together with very little assistance. It's a great way to involve the kids in cooking and learning about food and it's no secret kids that are involved in the cooking process are more inclined to try new things so if you have a reluctant eater get them in the kitchen!

Serves 4

4 tablespoons of  garlic infused olive oil (I blitzed up 4 cloves of garlic in morning and put it in a jar with the 4 tablespoons of Extra virgin olive oil and let sit till dinner time)
1 tsp dried chilli flakes (leave out if you wish) 
100g semi / or sundried tomatoes chopped
400-500g of gluten free pasta (we use 100% non GMO Corn pasta)
425g of tuna (in either spring water or Olive oil) for a more  “meaty”  dinner use more tuna (or even salmon)
½ cup (80g) of chopped kalamata olives
Optional – ½ cup (30g) of shredded basil and ½ cup (40g) of grated parmesan if you are not dairy free. 

Combine the oil, chilli and tomatoes in a jar and shake well to combine. Set aside for about an hour. (This is more so if you are using sun dried tomatoes which tend to be drier than semi dried tomatoes) so you could leave this step out if you don't have the time).

Cook the pasta in salted water (we use Pink salt) until just tender. Drain and return to pan, 

Stir in mixture (oil/tomatoes etc) and the tuna, olives and half of the basil (if using)

Divide among four bowls and top with parmesan and remaining basil (if using- both are optional) 

Here is Riley (and Lachlan) with his pasta creation looking mighty proud :)

Very easily made vegetarian/vegan - just add more veggies such as pan fried mushrooms, capsicum, eggplants etc.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Chicken Tikka Skewers

Food on a stick, what child doesn't find it a novelty!

(For small children please watch them with wooden skewers you can cut off the ends to make them safer)

You can play with the spices on these skewers to suit your children's taste but I kept them quite mild in this trial batch so up the spices if you like them hotter.

You will need:

1/2 cup of coconut cream (use Organic if possible and look out for BPA free cans)
1 tablespoon of finely grated ginger
3 tsp garam masalla
1/4 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground tumeric
1/4 - 1/2 tsp ground chillies (OPTIONAL)
salt and pepper
1 kg diced free range/organic chicken breast cut into 2 cm cubes
Extra virgin olive oil to pan fry/BBQ

Combine coconut cream and spices in a large bowl season with salt & pepper. Add in the diced chicken and stir until evenly coated, Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours for flavours to develop.

Thread the chicken onto pre soaked wooden skewers (soaking prevents them from burning whilst cooking) and cook on a hot grill/BBQ or in a pan. Cook till golden brown and cooked through.

Serve with your favourite salad, roast veggies etc 

If you are not dairy intolerant/allergic you can use a full fat Greek yoghurt in place of the coconut cream.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Gluten free pasta with pumpkin, corn, red capsicum and zucchini

This dish is light & fresh and can be done either in the Thermomix or on a stove top. Feel free to add other veggies that will compliment the below flavours for more variety.

300g of GF pasta (We use the Pasta odora 100% Corn pasta which you can buy from the health food isle at Woolworths, it’s not organic but GMO free)
2 fresh ears of corn, husks & kernels removed – (Please use organic corn to avoid the genetically modified versions!)
1 red capsicum seeded and cut into a medium dice
1 small onion (brown) finely diced / or blizted in the thermie prior to starting
2 medium zucchini’s (about 400g total) cut into medium dice
3 cloves of garlic crushed / or blizted in the thermie prior to starting
200g of cubed pumpkin (skin off)

      Cook pasta on stove top, follow packet instructions. I salt my water – There is no need to be afraid of salt – as long as you use the right kind. Pink Murray River salt or Himalayan salt is the most beneficial to your body.

       Add olive oil (about 35g) to the Thermomix bowl and heat on Varoma temp speed 1 for 2 mins

       Add corn, capsicum and onion and cook on 100 for 3-4 mins reverse speed soft (or until onion is translucent

        Season to taste with  salt and pepper and add zucchini and pumpkin and garlic and cook on 100 reverse speed soft for approximately 4-5 mins (until pumpkin & zucchini are just tender.

       Reserve ¼ cup of the pastas cooking water and drain pasta, add the reserved water to the veggie mix in the thermomix bowl . Put pasta in serving bowl and then cover with the veggie mix and season with salt and pepper.

       For extra flavour/colour mix in ¼ cup of basil and some extra virgin olive oil to the dish ( I didn't the boys don’t like fresh herbs in their food.)

If you don’t have a Thermomix follow the above method /order using a large heavy based pan and stir frequently to avoid veggie sticking to your pan.

It's also delicious the next day for lunch! Enjoy!