Meal Plan 6th - 12th July 2015

Another late publishing of a meal plan, sorry!!! We had another wedding in the weekend, and the drive home should of taken 5 and a half hours, but took 9 whole hours... The joys of travelling with children ha!

So I won't chit chat about the meal plan I will just give it to you... 

Click to enlarge...

Crumbed weiner schnitzel 

I love this Chelsea Winter recipe for weiner schnitzel, its amazing, I highly recommend.

I made a few changes to this recipe...

  • I omitted the flour from the recipe. Dip the schnitzel in egg and then the crumb recipe below. 
  • Instead of using breadcrumbs, I made a mxiture of 1 cup almond meal, 2 tablespoons of fresh chopped parsely, 1 lemon zest finely grated, 3 tablespoons of parmesan cheese. 
  • In the sauce, I used fresh oregano instead of dried - only because I have a oregano plant! And I added two more cloves of garlic than the recommended amount. 

Beef & Pumpkin Lasagna 
I use a recipe from Simon & Alison Holst, Best Mince Recipes, Hynhman Publishing, Amberley, Pg 33; and I make some changes to it... One big one if the pumpkin slices used instead of lasagne sheets. I have also taken out the can of tomato puree and 1/2 tsp sugar.

1 large onion (red or white)
3 cloves garlic
2 tbsp olive oil
500g minced beef
1 can diced tomatoes (or 400g fresh tomatoes chopped finely)
2 tablespoons tomato paste

red capsicum (my extra)
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp fresh basil, chopped (or 1 tsp dried basil)

1/2 pumpkin, thinly sliced

25g butter
3 tbsp flour
1/2 tsp salt
grated nutmeg and pepper to taste
2 cups milk
1 1/2 cups grated cheese

1 Preheat the oven to 180C on bake. Chop the pumpkin up into thin even sized pieces. Coat in coconut oil and sauteed for one to two minutes. Will need to be done in two to three batches. Place onto a large plate, we will use later. 
2 Using the same pan, heat the olive oil in a large frypan and lightly brown the chopped onion and garlic. Add the mince meat and cook, stirring frequently, until it has lost all its pink colour.
3 Stir in the tomatoes. Bring to the boil, then lower the heat and leave to simmer gently while you prepare the cheese sauce.
4 Melt the butter in a medium sized pot. Add the flour and seasonings and stir well over low heat for 30 seconds. Pour in half the milk and bring to the boil, stirring frequently. Add the remaining milk and bring to the boil again, still stirring, then remove from the heat and stir in 1 cup of the grated cheese.
5 Spread a third of the meat sauce in the bottom of a lightly oiled 20 x 30cm casserole dish. Put half of the pumpkin over the meat. Spread the next third of the mince mixture over the layer of pumpkin, add another layer of pumpkin. Repeat with the last layer of mince and pour the cheese sauce over top. 

6 Make sure the cheese sauce is spread evenly and the whole surface is covered. Sprinkle with the remaining grated cheese and dust lightly with paprika.

7 Bake at 180C for 40-50 minutes, until the pumpkin is cooked; then leave to stand for 15 minutes before cutting. If you are using lasagna sheets instead of pumpkin bake for 30-45minutes

Note: If you have some water/broth coming out of your lasagne, the trick is to take out a little piece of one corner, get a spoon and scoop it out. You can tip the lasagne up a little so it pours down into this hole you have made. The more you get out, the less soggier it will be! 
8 Serve with a crisp green salad.

I found a gorgeous looking coleslaw salad in the recent New Zealand Healthy Food Guide; that I thought would go nicely with this meal.

Winter coleslaw
New Zealand Healthy Food Guide. Edited by Niki Bezzant (Editor-in-chief). Published by Healthy Life Media Ltd. Takapuna, Auckland. July 2015. Pg78. 

1 1/2 cups finely shredded cabbage (red, white or a mix)
3 cups finely chopped broccoli

2 courgettes, grated
1 carrot, grated
1/4 red onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons chopped parsley

2 tablespoons balsamic dressing (2 parts balsamic vinegar to 1 part olive oil)
black pepper, freshly ground

1 Mix all ingredients together. Chill and serve with the lasagna.

Unfortunately for me... I forgot to write the ingredients down on my grocery list, so I wont be enjoying coleslaw with my lasagna, hopefully next time!!

Chicken Laksa 
New Zealand Healthy Food Guide. Edited by Niki Bezzant (Editor-in-chief). Published by Healthy Life Media Ltd. Takapuna, Auckland. July 2015. Pg84. 

200g vermicelli noodles (optional - Im also thinking of serving this with cauliflower rice)
olive oil spray

1 large onion, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons laksa paste

500g chicken breast fillets, sliced
2 cups reduced salt chicken stock
1 x 165ml can coconut milk (recipe calls for reduced fat, but I will use full fat)1 tablespoon fish sauce

1 teaspoon sugar (I will exclude)
2 kaffir lime leaves
1 x 3cm piece fresh ginger, peeled, thinly sliced
1 large carrot, peeled, thinly sliced diagonally
4 cups bok choy, trimmed, leaves separated, reserved (I am using broccoli instead - it was on special)
150 snow peas, trimmed, halved (I am using green beans instead, again, on special)lime juice, to taste
1 1/2 cups bean sprouts

1 Put vermicelli noodles in a large heatproof bowl, cover with boiling water and leave to soak for 3 minutes. Drain and set aside.
2 Spray a large wok (or saucepan) with olive oil and set over medium heat. Add onion and stir until lightly golden. Add laksa paste and stir for 1-2 minutes, or until fragrant. Add chicken and cook, stirring, for 2-3 minutes, or until slightly golden. Add stock, coconut milk, fish sauce, sugar, lime leaves, sliced ginger and 2 cups water and stir well.
3 Increase heat to high and bring mixture to the boil. Add carrot to wok. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through. Add bok choy and snow peas and cook for 1 minute. Remove wok from heat and add lime juice to taste.
4 Divide reserved vermicelli noodles among 4 bowls. Ladle hot laksa over noodles, top with bean sprouts and serve.

Duck with bacon, & walnut & orange 

One from last week... I am making this recipe up, I am yet to decide how I am going to cook the duck, so I think I will be updating this recipe after I have cooked it! My current thinking is to wrap the duck in bacon, along with some garlic, ginger and chinese five spice - but unsure how I will cook it, or how long for... I will serve the duck alongside a very simple salad, consisting of baby spinach, orange segments and chopped up walnuts. Duck & orange go together nicely so this should work, fingers crossed!

Cauliflower & zucchini pizza bases, topped with lamb, kumara & rosemary

Pizza base
1/2 head cauliflower
zucchini/4 cups grated zucchini(courgettes)
garlic cloves, finely grated
eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup ground almonds (almond flour or almond meal)
1 tsp dried oregano
 & pepper

Caramelised onion
1-2 onion
25g butter
2 garlic cloves (finely chopped)
1 tsp coriander
1 tsp cumin
Tomato sauce/pasteYou could either use tomato paste, or make your own sauce, for example simmer 1 can of chopped tomatoes, 1 finely chopped onion, 4 crushed garlic cloves, 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil, for 30 minutes, or until thicken.

Based on New
 Zealand Healthy Food Guide. Edited by Niki Bezzant (Editor-in-chief). Published by Healthy Life Media Ltd. Takapuna, Auckland. July 2015. Pg79. 

1/3 grated parmesan cheese
250g lean cooked lamb, thinly sliced
1 onion, thinly sliced
1 kumara, cubed and cooked
1 red capsicum, diced
2 cups baby spinach
3-4 sprigs rosemary
fresh ground black pepper4 tablespoons natural yogurt 

Heat oven to 200C. Cut the cauliflower florets off the stalk. Blitz the cauliflower in a food processor until finely chopped. Transfer all the cauliflower into a bowl, cover with cling film/gladwrap, and microwave on high for 5-6 minutes until softened. Tip onto a clean tea towel and leave to cool.
While the cauliflower cools, peel and grate the courgettes/zucchinis, place the zucchini into the food processor and quickly blitz. Tip onto a clean tea towel, scrunch up the tea towel and squeeze as much liquid out as you can, then transfer to a clean bowl. Once the cauliflower is cool enough to handle, squeeze as much liquid as you can out as well, following the same method as the zucchini. Place the cauliflower on top of the zucchini. Stir in the ground almonds, eggs, oregano, garlic, and a good seasoning of salt and pepper.
3 Line two 20cm pizza base trays (see photo below, it is not essential to use pizza base trays, but it does make it easier) with baking paper. Place half the cauliflower & zucchini mix into the centre of the trays, then using the back of a spoon, spread out the mixture evenly oven the tray. If you don't have pizza base trays, you can make the pizza bases by making two mounds with the cauliflower and zucchini mixture, then spread to form two pizza bases. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until beautifully golden brown.

Pizza base tray
Start with caramelising the onions, roughly chop the onion, place into a large frypan over a low to medium heat with the rest of the  ingredients and stir on regular occasions for around 30 minutes. Once cooked set aside.5 Keep the pizzas in the pizza bases/containers, to put the pizzas 'together'; start with the tomato paste or sauce. Sprinkle over parmesan cheese, lamb, vegetables (including the caramelised onion & baby spinach), and rosemary. Season with pepper. 
Bake the pizzas for 12-15 minutes at 200C. Top with a little yogurt. 

I hope you enjoy this week!! 

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