Curried Apricot & Raisin Couscous

Lunch, Salad

Couscous is a perfect option for batch cooking. Cooking in batches at the start of the week or over the weekend is the secret to maintaining a healthy diet or working towards a nutrition goal.

As it is officially summer at home in Ireland, it’s time for salads. Adding some grains to your salad is an easy way to bulk up your lunchbox at work. I have used giant or Israeli couscous here but regular couscous, bulgur wheat, rice or quinoa would be perfect replacements.

Serves 4 as a side.

Couscous, dried fruit, curry, Delalicious

  • 200g couscous grain
  • 400ml boiling hot water
  • 2 tbsp curry powder
  • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 6 dried apricots, diced
  • 2 tbsp raisins
  1. Mix the couscous with the water in a bowl or saucepan. Cover and allow the grain to absorb all the water or cook the grain as per packet instructions.
  2. Add all remaining ingredients and mix well.Couscous, dried fruit, curry, Delalicious
  3. Taste and if you prefer a stronger curry flavour just add some more.

 

 

 

How to Stay Healthy with JUST EAT

Reviews

JUST EAT have asked me to find the healthy side of takeaways. I will be letting you all in on my discoveries over the next six months so lots of eating on my part and lots of places for you to add to your list of favourite takeaways.justeat_apptile-logo-1As you all know my food blog Delalicious focuses on providing you with healthy, wholesome and easy recipes to make at home. As a sportswoman and Physiotherapist, I’m keen to stay healthy and in shape to ensure I work and play to my potential. Some people might think I never eat out or allow a chip pass my mouth, they do and especially after winning a big football match but it’s not my everyday food choice!! Healthy and takeaway aren’t two words that usually go hand in hand but I’ve discovered that they can; so read on to see how I managed to eat healthily using the JUST EAT app for one week.

What I found the hardest thing about this blog post was actually stopping myself from taking a portion of my curries, fish pies or stews out of the freezer the night before and giving my chopping board and knife a rest for the week….I know how sad but I do love to cook! But I also love to eat so this post was very easy to complete.

Monday: I had a light training session this evening so I decided to try out Chopped. Everybody raves about the place and I can see why, they have a wide array of salad combinations with DIY options and choices specific to meet your training needs. I opted for the Pulled Pork Salad with the Soup of the Day which was Mushroom – not my favourite but it is pot luck. Smoothies are also on the menu – I would highly recommend the Peanut Butter smoothie (it hit the spot after training)!! The best bit was that I when I went to collect my food after ordering online via the app, there was a queue of people a mile long to order but I got to jump straight to the top….waiting would not of been the ideal when your starving after work!!

Tuesday: After a gym session, I was ravenous and needed something fast. A great little place called Jolin’s Vietnamese Coffee House has popped up near my house and I got some gorgeous Vietnamese Beef Salad and Prawn Fresh Summer Rolls which had me nearly booking a flight to Vietnam they were so good. Jolin took such care in my order, as she cooked the beef right in front of me to ensure maximum freshness and taste.

Wednesday: I was racing around all day between work, football and blog stuff. Green Beards was my saviour as I was passing through Donnybrook and they have such tasty salads, smoothies and protein balls to choose from; I was in heaven! As you know salads can so easily go soggy but Green Beards have mastered this by using glass jars and layering the ingredients ensuring the delicate greens are on top away from any liquids. I opted for their Quinoa, Chickpea, Aubergine & Pomegranate Salad, a Honey Badger smoothie for after training and I picked up a few protein balls too. All their packaging is reusable, which earned them extra brownie points from my inner eco-warrior.

Thursday: Had a half day from work and decided something light and filling was needed to keep my energy levels going. Tolteca was the answer, I literally ordered on the app just as I left work and the delivery guy arrived as I pulled into my house. I opted for their Barbacoa Burrito Bowl with extra guacamole…. you can never have enough!!

Friday: The weekend had finally arrived and Aoki Sushi was my choice. They have a really big selection of all kinds of sushi, sashimi, noodles, ramen, teriyaki…the list goes on but I opted for a chefs special Sushi and Sashimi selection (it’s massive so I had plenty for lunch the next day) and a Teriyaki Salmon with extra vegetables instead of rice. Everything was light, fresh and really filled me up!

Saturday: Brunch is the only answer for Saturdays and Póg answered the sirens from my hungry belly. The Póg breakfast menu has tons of choice so it was tough to whittle down my decision. In the end I went for the Breakfast Parfait (with frozen yoghurt!) and the Nut Butter Toast Breakfast all from the comfort of my bed. The toast is deliciously good, I was there trying to savour each bite of the slice when I discovered a second layer with another slice…let’s just say I was a very happy girl!

Sunday: After a tough match, comfort food was on my mind and Camden Rotisserie answered the call as they know how to create the perfect succulent roast chicken. They have a wide choice of sides, protein only options and salads to choose from. I went for the Butterflied Chicken with a Goats Cheese Salad. All the food was cooked to perfection and full of flavour …. if you haven’t already, you need to experience the chicken! The portions are massive for one person so I had plenty of leftovers for my lunch in work the next day.

So, as you can see there are plenty of healthy options available on JUST EAT; so get ordering! If I’ve left your favourite healthy takeaway option out let me know in the comments below and I’ll try squeezing it into my next review.

Keep an eye out for my next post in December or follow me on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for some more healthy eating inspiration!

BBQ Season is Here

Dinner, Lunch, Salad

The sun is out in Ireland for an hour, it’s a summer month so that means only one thing in about every second household ……the return of the BBQ! BBQ’s need not be all about the meat; salads, sides and tasty marinades are very important in my book. Here are a few of my favourite things to have at a BBQ.

  1. Sticky Pork Ribs – I adore ribs, so messy but so tasty!!Processed with VSCOcam with m5 preset
  2. Corn on the Cob – I tend to use vacuum-packed corn as it’s very readily available, simply cook as per instructions on packet, melt some butter, add finely grated parmesan to the butter and roll the cooked corn in this mix, finish over a medium heat on the BBQ until golden.
  3. BBQ Baked Sweet Potato – this was a wonderful mistake. Simply cut the sweet potato 3/4 way down the middle, cover in tin-foil and bake in the BBQ for 20 mins.
  4. Citrus Chicken – full of fresh summery flavours, simply marinade and cook on the BBQ, I love this the night before matches in the summer.Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset
  5. Asian Prawn Salad – finish the prawns on the BBQ instead of using the oven.IMG_2876
  6. Nectarine & Mozzarella Salad – perfect as a light nibble whilst everyone gathers for the feast.IMG_3048

Quinoa & Bulgur Salad

Lunch, Salad

This salad is perfect for your lunchbox, a quick lunch or dinner served with some salmon, shredded chicken or simply on its own. It’s great for using up any leftover roasted veg too. The tahini dressing also works great instead of mayonnaise in coleslaw.

Serves 4-6.

  • 100g quinoa/bulgur wheat
  • 500ml water
  • 1 pre-cooked beetroot
  • 2 small carrots
  • 1/2 small sweet potato
  • 2 tbsp pumpkin/sunflower seeds
  • 2 tbsp dried cranberries
  • 1/3 cucumber
  • 1 spring onion
  • 2 celery stalks

Tahini Dressing:

  • 3 tsp tahini
  • 1 tsp dried coriander
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp cottage cheese
  • 4 tbsp water
  1. Rinse the quinoa & bulgur in a fine sieve whilst you bring the 500ml water to the boil. Once the water begins to boil, add the rinsed grains, place the lid on the saucepan, reduce to a simmer and cook until all the water is absorbed about 20mins. Take off the heat, remove the lid and allow to cool.
  2. Preheat an oven to 200C. Melt 2 tsp coconut oil in a roasting tray. Peel the carrots and sweet potato and cut into cubes with the beetroot. Mix the veg thoroughly with the coconut oil and roast in the oven for 20 mins. Once cooked, set aside to cool. 
  3. Place the seeds & cranberries into a bowl and cover with boiling water. Strain just before adding to the salad.
  4. Finely slice the spring onions. Slice the celery stalks into rounds. Slice the cucumber in half and remove the soft centre before cutting into rounds.
  5. For the dressing: stir all the ingredients together until they are smooth. 
  6. To assemble: place the cooled quinoa & bulgur into a large mixing bowl with the remaining ingredients and dressing. Stir to combine. 

Beetroot, Basil & Toasted Almond Salad

Salad

This is my new favourite salad; the combination of the basil, beetroot, balsamic and toasted almonds makes for some really fresh flavours that will banish any blues and kick-start your taste buds.

  • 2 large cooked beetroots
  • 1/4 cucumber
  • 1 large celery stalk
  • 5 large basil leaves
  • 1 tbsp flaked almonds
  • 2 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard.
  1. In a bowl; chop the beetroot and cucumber into bite-sized chunks, finely slice the celery into rounds and roughly chop the basil leaves. 
  2. Place the flaked almonds in a pan and gently toast over a low heat for a few minutes until they begin to brown. 
  3. Mix together the remaining ingredients for the dressing until the mustard is well combined. 
  4. Stir 4 tsp of the dressing through the vegetables and simply finish by sprinkling the toasted almonds over the top.

Chicken Salad Tower

Dinner, Lunch, Salad

This is a quick and easy salad that is filled with essential protein (chicken), slow release carbohydrates (sweet potato), good fatty acids (avocado) and  guarantees your five a day of vegetables. I entered this dish into JCI Dublin‘s competition to promote healthy eating amongst Dublin dwellers.

 Serves 1.

  • 1/4 sweet potato
  • 2 tsp coconut oil
  • 3 large kale leaves
  • 2 spring onions
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • Sea salt
  • 1 medium carrot
  • 1 cooked & vacuum packed fresh beetroot
  • 1 small apple
  • 1/4 cucumber
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1 pink radish
  • 1 chicken breast
  • 2 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tsp tahini
  • 2 tsp sesame oil
  • 2 tbsp water
  1. Pre-heat an oven to 180C.
  2. Cut the sweet potato into about 1 inch thick fingers. Melt the coconut oil in a roasting tin, once melted add the sweet potato and place in the oven to roast for about 20 minutes or until soft through. 
  3. Strip the kale off the stalk and shred with your fingers into bite-sized pieces. Remove the stalks and outer layer of the spring onions and finely slice. In a bowl, add the lemon juice and a pinch of sea salt to the kale and spring onion. Massage the kale until the leaves darkens. 
  4. Remove the apple core and top and tail the carrot before coarsely grating them with the beetroot.  
  5. Prepare the cucumber and radish by thinly slicing into rounds.  
  6. Cut the avocado in half, scoop out the flesh with a teaspoon and thinly slice.
  7. Pre-heat a frying pan over a high heat. Chop the chicken breast into thin strips and place on the pan. Turning regularly until cooked through.
  8. For the dressing, simply mix together the tahini, sesame oil and balsamic vinegar until it forms a thick paste. Gradually mix through the water until it begins to thin but isn’t watery.
  9. Simply assemble the salad by laying the foundation with the sweet potato, followed by a layer of cucumber slices, kale salad, carrot/beetroot/apple slaw, avocado slices. Finely top with the chicken strips, radish slices and a drizzle of the dressing.

Nectarine & Mozzarella Salad

Lunch, Salad, Snack

This is a lovely light salad for lazy summer days when you don’t feel like something heavy or what to waste a minute inside away from the sun! Works great on its own as a sharing starter plate, add some grilled chicken as a lunch option or simply as a side for a BBQ.

  • 2 ripe nectarines
  • 2 fresh mozzarella balls, strained
  • 5-6 fresh basil leaves
  • 2 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp honey
  1. Simply de-stone the nectarines, slice into segments and place around the outer edge of a large plate.
  2. Slice the strained mozzarella into even rounds and add to the centre of the plate.
  3. Gently tear the basil leaves in half and scatter over the plate.
  4. For the dressing, mix the remaining ingredients together until it thickens and using a spoon lightly drizzle over the plate.

Crisp Asian Prawn Salad

Dinner, Fish, Lunch, Salad

This salad is bursting full of light, fresh and crisp flavours, the perfect answer to a summer’s evening. I’m not the biggest shellfish fan but the lime and coriander prawns are slowly converting me; shredded chicken or beef would also work well!

 Serves 2.

  • 1/2 head of broccoli
  • 5 tbsp frozen peas, defrosted
  • 4 spring onions
  • 2 medium carrots
  • 2 large celery sticks
  • 2.5 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 100g frozen shelled prawns, defrosted
  • 1/2 juice of a lime
  • handful of chopped fresh coriander

Dressing:

  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp fish sauce
  • 1 tbsp water
  1. Bring a pan of salted water to the boil and blanch the broccoli divided into small florets for 2 minutes. Remove the broccoli and allow to cool and dry on kitchen paper.
  2. Assemble the salad bowl, by finely slicing the spring onion and celery. Using a Julienne slicer or knife, cut the carrots into thin matchsticks. Add these along with 2 tbsp sesame seeds, the peas and cooled broccoli to a large mixing bowl and gently mix together. 
  3. For the dressing; simply whisk all the ingredients together stir through the vegetable mix.IMG_2871
  4. Bring a small frying pan with 1 tsp coconut oil to a high heat. Once heated, add the prawns and gently toss until they begin to turn white. Add the lime juice and coriander and continue to toss until well combined. Remove from the heat and allow the juice to reduce. 
  5. To assemble; place some salad on a plate, toss over the prawns and finish with a tsp sesame seeds and a sprinkle of coriander.

Put a Spring in Your Step

Salad

As the days are getting longer and the sun has finally arrived, it means salad is in season!! The two recipes below work great on their own or as a side with any meat, quiche, frittata, sandwich or BBQ. The dressing can be stored in the fridge and added to any kind of salad.

Broccoli, Feta, Hazelnut, Tomato:

IMG_1642

  • 1/2 head of broccoli
  • 8 cherry tomatoes
  • 1/4 pack Feta cheese
  • handful hazelnuts
  • 3 tbsp “The Frenchie” dressing
  1. Toast the hazelnuts on a frying pan or in a medium heat oven until the skin begins to loosen, remove from the oven and allow to cool.
  2. Cut the broccoli into small florets, quarter the tomatoes, cube the feta cheese and place in a bowl.
  3. Once the hazelnuts are cooled, place them in a tea towel and rub together until all the skin is removed.
  4. Add hazelnuts and dressing to the bowl and mix well.

Carrot, Courgette, Sesame Salad:

IMG_1640

  • 1 large carrot
  • 1/2 courgette
  • 2 tbsp mix of pumpkin and sunflower seeds
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 2 tbsp “The Frenchie” dressing
  1. Lightly toast the pumpkin and sunflower seeds over a medium heat until you see the seeds begin to swell, remove from the heat and allow to cool.
  2. Coarsely grate the carrot and courgette into a bowl.
  3. Add all the seeds and dressing and mix well.

The Frenchie Dressing:

  • 2 cloves garlic crushed
  • Generous squeeze of lemon juice
  • Fresh pepper
  • 5 tbsp olive oil
  • 5 tbsp sesame oil
  • 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar 
  • 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp honey
  1. Add all ingredients to a jar, put on the lid and shake until well combined.
  2. Taste and season with more pepper, honey or lemon juice as required.
  3. Keep in the fridge for up to a month.