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Cajun chicken quinoa lettuce bowls: Recipe and playlist

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It looks like I’m on a one woman quinoa crusade at the moment. I can’t get enough of the stuff. Those little nutty grains are just so yummy, and I always feel better eating them rather than pasta or white rice. The lettuce bowls are really easy to do but I think they are a bit more exciting than just serving the chicken with a simple side salad.

Playlist to accompany your cooking

Recipe

Ingredients – Serves two, or one with good lunch leftovers

2 chicken breasts
1 cup quinoa
1 tbsp cajun seasoning
1 larger red onion – cut into slices
2 peppers – cut into slices
6 spring onions – cut into small pieces
1 chicken stock cube
Iceberg lettuce

Method

Pre-heat the oven to 180C (fan oven).

Cut the chicken breast into bite-sized pieces and coat in the cajun seasoning.

Bake in the oven for around 20 minutes.

While the chicken is baking, wash your quinoa under the tap to rinse off the bitter coating. 

Add the chicken stock cube to boiling water, and cook the quinoa for 15 minutes.

While the quinoa is cooking, stir-fry the onion and pepper pieces for a few minutes until softer, but still with a crunch. Add the spring onion for the last couple of minutes. 

Drain the quinoa, and toss everything together.

With the iceberg lettuce, carefully peel off to form ‘bowls’ and serve the quinoa inside. 

Dress with a ranch dressing, or olive oil and balsamic vinegar. 

Photos on the way! They’re currently being held prisoner on my old phone, which doesn’t want to give them up without a fight.

Whiskey and ginger sour: Recipe and playlist

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The sun is shining, the weather is sweet yeah (as a certain Bob Marley sang), which means it’s cocktail time. Yes yes, I know it’s cocktail time all year round, but any excuse and all that… 

While this may not be a particularly fruity, summery number, it is sweet, sour, and you will be wanting more. It works especially well if you’re watching Mad Men, or sat in a smoke-hazed room wearing braces and a hat. Other locations and occasions are acceptable.

Old Fashioned and an Iced tea

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Fresh basil pesto: Recipe and playlist

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The humble pesto: is there anything that isn’t improved by a big dollop of basil? This is one of those recipes that is so easy, and so quick, I’m annoyed at myself for not making it before. I’ve treated myself to the odd jar of fresh pesto at the farmers market, but mainly I’ve ploughed through jar after jar of Sacla.

If you have a spare five minutes, this is perfect for a quick midweek meal, either on pasta, or whatever your pesto preference. And you’ll feel so much more satisfied than reaching for that stockpiled Sacla.  

Pesto on pasta

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Huevos Rancheros: Recipe and playlist

Huevos rancheros for dinner? ‘You must be crazy Hogg, eggs are for breakfast’ I hear you cry. Well, these particular eggs are rich, spicy, definitely filling enough for dinner, and are quick and easy to put together and pop in the oven. 

Huevos rancheros

Huevos rancheros (with slightly overdone eggs. I’m not a runny yolk kinda gal)

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Quinoa, butternut squash and halloumi salad: Recipe and playlist

Quinoa, halloumi and butternut squash salad

I bought myself some quinoa a while ago, but it’s just been sat in my cupboard, until today. I decided it was time to give it a go, after all, the sun is shining and cooking with quinoa is about as adventurous as I’m going to get today. If I can get through this recipe without writing ‘buttnut’ again, it will be a success. Read the rest of this entry

Tempura vegetables: Recipe and playlist

Tempura vegetables and sweet chilli sauce

Although I still get a bit panicky when faced with frying food, I really wanted to have a go at some tempura vegetables. What better way of enjoying lovely, healthy vegetables than covering them in batter and frying them? My slight obsession with sweet chilli sauce helps too, as it is the perfect accompaniment to this quick and easy Japanese dish.

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Coffee semifreddo: Recipe and playlist

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You should never break a promise, but it appears I have. I’ve left you all hanging (well perhaps one or two of you) with a lack of coffee semifreddo recipe to accompany your chocolate torte. I teased you with the torte, but what’s a torte without semifreddo (still wonderful but that’s not the point)?

As it’s stopped raining 24/7 and is down to around 23/6, this refreshing semifreddo is great in the sun on a lazy summer(ish) afternoon in front of the Olympics.

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