Indian Vegetarian Dish


Yellow Dal is comfort food at its best, it is a simple dish but a staple in most Indian homes. Growing up my mum always cooked us Yellow Dal with Rice and it something we devoured. I’m so glad I’ve introduced this Yellow Split Pea Dal Recipe to my kids. On our meat-free days my boys are content with a bowl of steaming rice and dal.

The yellow split peas is boiled until it’s soft and it is then cooked with a variety of spices. The tempering of the spices is what takes the dal to a whole new level. My favourite way to serve this dish is with rice but you can have it with your favourite bread too.

Everyone has their own method of cooking this dish. I remember my mum spending hours tempering her spices and creating a delicious mix to add to her dal. I must admit I am a lazy cook, for me it’s the easy way out as long as my food still tastes delicious without the added effort I am happy. It is about the flavour after all, right?

We call it yellow dal due to the fact that turmeric is added to it, this is what gives this Yellow Split Pea Dal Recipe a beautiful golden hue. I find my dried beans and peas takes much longer to boil in Johannesburg, due to the high altitude. If you didn’t know this “low air pressure causes boiling water to evaporate more quickly in high altitude”, now you should understand why our dried beans and peas take longer to cook. It’s why I have invested in a pressure cooker, makes life so much more simple.

This recipe makes a great dish for vegetarians and you can make it ahead and freeze. My fussy family will never eat food that’s pre-cooked and frozen but I have frozen cooked dal in the past, heated and served it to them. They didn’t know the difference. My hubby even went to the extent of complimenting me on how delicious the dal was, or should I say “leftover dal”. I hope you get to make a fresh pot of dal and enjoy!

You may want to try some of my other vegetarian recipes from my blog too, here’s the links below: https://itsallaboutthekitchen.co.za/recipe/dhall/

https://itsallaboutthekitchen.co.za/recipe/sauteed-okra-lady-fingers/

My friend Sonila makes a delicious Yellow Split Pea Soup, so if you want to try something different check her recipe out at:

https://mediterraneanlatinloveaffair.com/instant-pot-yellow-split-peas-soup-with-spinach/

https://mediterraneanlatinloveaffair.com/instant-pot-yellow-split-peas-soup-with-spinach


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Yellow Split Pea Dhall Recipe
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Instructions
  1. Soak dhall overight or for a few hours. Add the 3 cups of water with the turmeric and boil on the stovetop or in a pressure cooker until it's soft and smooth
  2. Heat butter ghee or oil and add mustard seeds, cumin seeds and fenugreek seeds. Once it starts bursting add spring onion (optional) curry leaf, chilli and onion and sauté until onion is translucent
  3. Add garlic and fry for a minute
  4. Add the tomato and cook on a low heat until the tomato is cooked
  5. Add the cooked dhall and season with salt, Add more water and bring to a boil, allow it to simmer on the stove for about 20 minutes. Water can be added according to your preference, if you prefer a thick dhall add less water, if you prefer it more liquid then add less water.
  6. Garnish with coriander
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South African Indian Dish

I have no time to try out new recipes so I am sticking to my old time favorites, at least until we move. Nothing beats the comfort of familiar homecooked food when stress levels are high. So if you need some comfort food why not try this Spicy Lamb Kebab Chutney, a typically South African Indian version of meatballs.

The tomato sauce or chutney for this sauce is made from tomatoes with a few simple spices and can be used as a base for many other dishes too. You will see from the recipe that the kebabs are spicy so you don’t need an overly spiced chutney. Feel free to reduce to the amount of chilli and chilli powder according to your preference.

Spicy Lamb Kebab Chutney is also a great make ahead dish. It freezes well so you can cook a big batch and freeze them for those lazy days or if you need a meal in a hurry.In our home we usually serve this lamb dish with Roti or naan bread, you always have to have that bread to dunk into the tomato chutney.

The lamb kebabs can be shallow fried or cooked in the oven but be sure not to overcook them. It just needs a few minutes of cooking on each side, they need to be tender and succulent.My food processor is one of my most loved gadgets in the kitchen, makes life really easy. I used mine to blend the ingredients for the kebabs, I didn’t make mine into a fine paste. I prefer my onion and herbs a little chunky but you can make yours into a smooth paste, especially if you don’t really like tasting the onion

Please do try my recipe and I would love to hear your comments.

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Spicy Lamb Kebab Chutney
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Instructions
  1. To make the lamb kebabs add one onion, 2 green chillies, ginger/garlic paste, kashmiri chilli powder, cumin, turmeric, garam masala, salt, mint and coriander leaves to a food processor and process until it resembles a rough paste or smooth if your prefer
  2. Chop up the spring onion and add to this mixture. Add mince and egg and mix it well
  3. Divide the mixture into equal sized balls and side aside
  4. Heat 2 tablespoons oil and fry the lamb kebabs and set aside. Be careful not to overcook them.
  5. For the Chutney Heat 2 tablespoons oil and add the onion, chilli and curry leaf
  6. Saute the onion until it's translucent. Add the garlic and saute for another minute
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Cooked the South African way with the addition of Coconut Cream.

Green Bean Curry has always been a popular dish in our home, except that we never cooked it with any sort of cream or milk. This Green Bean Curry with Coconut Cream is a first for me but it was amazing. I have seen recipes for Green Bean curry with coconut milk, cooked the Sri Lankan way. I thought let me follow my usual recipe and just add coconut milk to it and see what it tastes like but only to discover I had no coconut milk. I settled for coconut cream instead.

Surprisingly this Green Bean Curry with Coconut Cream tasted divine, I was a bit sceptical about what it would taste like but I loved it. Will definitely be cooking this dish again. We do cut up our green bean a little differently when using it in a curry, it is sliced thinly and sort of diagonally, I think the reason for this was for quick cooking time. Not sure if there’s another reason but it’s how my mum did it and it works well.

If you want an even more simple green bean recipe then maybe you should try this fried green bean recipe https://itsallaboutthekitchen.coif .za/recipe/fried-green-beans/

You can serve this Green Bean curry with some Basmati rice or roti. I personally prefer it with roti, almost all veggie curries taste delicious with roti. I haven’t yet posted a roti recipe but you can check out my tips on getting perfect rotis https://itsallaboutthekitchen.co.za/roti-making/

Will definitely try and share a recipe soon. The South African way of making roti is definitely not the same as it’s made in India but it’s what we are used to, soft, buttery rotis.

Please do try this recipe. You are most welcome to mail me at any time if you need help with my recipes. I love sharing and I always love to help. It’s great when I hear from people that have tried something that I’ve posted, makes my blogging journey worth it.

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Green Bean Curry with Coconut Milk
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Instructions
  1. Heat oil, add onion, fenugreek seeds, curry leaf and chilli
  2. When onion is translucent add garlic and fry for minute
  3. Add masala,, chilli powder and turmeric. Add a few drops of water and fry for a minute
  4. Add the sliced green beans and season with salt. Simmer on low heat until green beans is cooked
  5. Add the coconut cream and cook until it's heated through. Serve hot
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Easy One-Pot Dish

I hope you’re all having a great weekend! I had a lovely morning with my friend Michelle, she took me out for a pre-birthday breakfast at my favourite place called Harpers and what a delicious one it was. It’s always nice to have a break catching up with girlfriends, sometimes I get so caught up with being busy I forget what it’s like to relax and have a meaningful chat with friends. This past week I met my friend Donna and today it was Michelle so I’ve had my fix for the next few days. My birthday is in a few days and I’m too scared to even mention my age anymore. After that lazy morning this Spicy Lemon Garlic Fish is the perfect quick and easy dinner.

This world of blogging can be very daunting somedays and I have been a little stressed the past few days as I just couldn’t get the technical side of things right. So you can imagine breakfast with my friend was a welcome relief.

I also have a darling blogging buddy Sonila Cami who runs the blog called Mediterranean Latin Love Affair . She is so kind and helpful through this journey and always encourages and motivate me to do better. I am slowly connecting with more people in the blogging world and it feels great to know that I am not alone in my struggles to get things right. The world is full of amazing people and I am so grateful to have them in my life.

Sometimes we have a goal in mind but don’t always look at the bigger picture. It’s what I often do, jump into things without really analysing it enough. Like what I did with my blog, I jumped in and I thought it would be a walk in the park but was I in for a surprise. It is hard work and it takes constant learning, I am learning something new every single day or should I say every hour of every day. It’s not as easy as clicking a pic and typing a recipe.

Just a little word of advice, go live your dream but just be a little more prepared than I was, you will enjoy it so much more. Now that I’ve got all that off my chest let me get on with sharing my Spicy Lemon Garlic Fish recipe.

Fish can be a delicious protein but it has to be perfectly cooked. Also ensure that your pan is heated before you cook your fish or it will stick. I did not use a non-stick fan but my fish was still intact. It also only requires a few minutes on the heat so keep an eye on it.

Please do try my other fish recipes, just click on the link below:

https://itsallaboutthekitchen.co.za/recipe/moroccan-fish-skewers-with-saffron/

https://itsallaboutthekitchen.co.za/recipe/spicy-hake-fishcakes/

https://itsallaboutthekitchen.co.za/recipe/fish-biryani-basmati-rice/

https://itsallaboutthekitchen.co.za/recipe/thai-style-salmon-fishcakes/

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Spicy Lemon Garlic Fish
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Instructions
  1. Marinate fish with cumin, chilli powder, garlic, lemon juice and zest. Season with salt and pepper and refrigerate for half an hour
  2. Heat the olive oil on medium/high heat and sear fish on both sides, about a minute per side. Set aside
  3. In the same oil saute the green pepper together with the chilli and garlic. When the pepper is almost cooked, add the tomatoes and cook until it starts to burst
  4. Return the fish to the pan until it's cooked. Season with more salt if required. I cooked the fish for about 3 minutes on each side. However, time will vary depending on thickness of the fish
  5. Squeeze the juice of 1 lemon over the fish and remove from heat.
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I guess my family can only do so much roast veggies and salads. Today it’s a Creamy Spicy Chicken Pasta, my kids favourite comfort food.

This easy Creamy Spicy Chicken Pasta Recipe is so simple, you can have a meal on your table in less than 30 minutes. It’s comforting, spicy and oh so yummy!

I love spicing up my chicken before I add them to pasta. It makes it all the more delicious. I’ve tried making it with cajun spice, garlic and chilli, hot chilli sauce and many more spicy variations. Everyone needs a bit of spice in their lives every once in a while, even on a hot summer’s day.

If you are daring enough you can even add a bit of chilli when marinating your chicken with the spices for this recipe.

Making a white/bechamel sauce can be intimidating at first, I was scared to make one when I was younger too. Mainly because I thought I would have a lumpy sauce, and yes I did have lumpy sauce in my early days of cooking. However, I quickly figured the secret to getting a smooth sauce, my trusted old whisk, it works like magic. Use a whisk to stir your sauce and you will never have lumpy sauce again.

As we all know Chicken Breasts are also tricky to cook, it can overcook very easily and the it becomes all chewy. Nobody wants that as it just ruins a good dish. I cook my Chicken Breasts on medium to high heat and I cook it just enough on both sides, usually about 4 to 5 minutes per side. I make a little slit in the centre of the breast to check if it’s cooked, no fancy gadgets required.

My kids love a saucy dish so I add a little less pasta to this Creamy Spicy Chicken Pasta just so they can enjoy that sauciness. You can add more pasta if you wish. When boiling your pasta you need to pop your pasta into a pot of boiling water, add some salt and it’s good to go. I do not add oil to my pasta as I find that the sauce adheres to the pasta better without the oil.

Here’s a list of some of my other delicious Chicken Recipes:

https://itsallaboutthekitchen.co.za/recipe/lemon-garlic-chicken/

https://itsallaboutthekitchen.co.za/recipe/chilli-chicken-indo-chinese-recipe/

https://itsallaboutthekitchen.co.za/recipe/butter-chicken/

Another delicious recipe to try from https://mediterraneanlatinloveaffair.com

https://mediterraneanlatinloveaffair.com/creamy-spinach-and-mushrooms-chicken/


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Creamy Spicy Chicken Pasta
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Instructions
  1. Marinate the chicken breasts with the chilli powder, cumin, garam masala, ginger/garlic paste, lemon juice, buttermilk and some salt and pepper. Refrigerate for an hour.
  2. Make the white sauce by melting the butter on medium heat. Add the flour and cook for about 2 minutes. Remove the mixture off the stove and whisk in half the milk, a little at a time. Using a whisk prevents a lumpy sauce.
  3. Return the sauce to the heat and keep stirring. Add the remaining milk and cream and stir until it thickens forming a smooth, silky sauce. Season with salt and pepper. Should cook for about 8 minutes. Place a clingfilm over the sauce to prevent a skin forming on top and set aside
  4. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil on medium to high heat and fry the chicken. About 4 minutes on each side until chicken is soft, tender and cooked all the way through
  5. Boil pasta in a pot of boiling water with some salt, should be al la dente. You can chop up the chicken breasts and mix it all together with the sauce and pasta or you can mix the pasta with the sauce and place the sliced chicken on top. I prefer to mix it all together as the flavours really get in
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I have fond memories of this dish growing up, Yellow Potato Curry with Cumin. You must wonder why the name Yellow Potato, well that name comes from the addition of turmeric that turns the potato into a beautiful hue of yellow.

My mum often made us sandwiches topped with this curry and a spread of grated mango pickle/atchar on top. It was the most delicious thing ever. I didn’t think my sandwiches were anything to rave about when I was at school. However, I had a friend that thought I had the most scrumptious food in my lunchbox and couldn’t wait for me to share my mum’s delicious sandwiches with her. Who would have thought sandwiches made with Yellow Potato Curry with Cumin would be such a hit.

Turmeric is a natural anti-inflammatory and has great health benefits, it’s why I love using turmeric in my cooking. The added bonus is that this dish is vegan and the addition of mint adds a new spin to the classic recipe. Mint may not always seem like the perfect herb to pair with potatoes but the flavour is amazing.

The best way to eat this dish is with freshly baked bread. Although my family prefers rice or roti. Do try it with some bread and let me know what you think, it may be an overload of carbs but it’s worth it. If you have some pickle/atchar in your cupboard even better, nothing beats the cumin potatoes with that hint of tanginess.

It’s not even suppertime and I’m already salivating. The best food is made with simple ingredients, it’s why I’m not into gourmet food, takes too much effort with way too many ingredients. I don’t have the time nor the patience for that. I will leave that to the experts. Well if you looking for a quick dinner then this is your recipe. You may also want to try some of my other great potato recipes.

https://itsallaboutthekitchen.co.za/recipe/old-fashioned-potato-salad/

https://itsallaboutthekitchen.co.za/recipe/indian-inspired-fried-potatoes/


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Yellow Potato Curry with Cumin
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Instructions
  1. Heat oil and add cumin seeds
  2. Once the cumin seeds start to burst add the onion, curry leaf and chillies
  3. When the onion is transluscent add the potatoes and turmeric. Season with salt
  4. Saute the potatoes for a minute. Add half cup of water and simmer on a low temperature until potatoes are soft and tender. During the cooking process you can add a little more water if it dries out before the potatoes are cooked
  5. Mix in the mint leaves and serve hot
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I first tasted this Creamy Tuna Sauce when a friend shared some with me. It was made by a friend, she is also an amazing cook and I hope I have done justice to this recipe. She did mention the ingredients used in creating this recipe but I didn’t get any exact measurements so I made up the recipe from what I remember.

We were going away on holiday when I made this sauce so I didn’t have time to post the recipe. It’s a lovely dish to cook in Summer as you can eat it hot or cold. I did taste it both ways and it was still delicious. My husband and I love eating it with crackers, it makes the perfect dip. You can also serve it on a bed of pasta or make a pasta bake with a generous sprinkling of cheese…yum! Now that we are back home it’s back to the kitchen, I do love cooking but every once in a while it’s lovely to have a break from it.

It’s amazing how stress-free life can be when you away from “reality”, not having to bother with cleaning and cooking or any of the million things that awaits us at home everyday. I desperately needed that break, away from the hustle and bustle of Johannesburg but I must admit it’s good to be back home. I missed my own bed. There’s definitely only a limited number of days you can actually enjoy living out of a suitcase in a hotel room. Durban was beautiful, it’s always warm and welcoming, we love the people and we definitely enjoy the hospitality we receive from our families in Durban. My mum and mum-in-law are also great cooks so I enjoyed being spoilt with their special dishes, they love cooking for us. Now I am too afraid to get on that scale…it may just break!

Hubby and I have both agreed it’s healthy eating again, now that we have nobody special to cook for us. I think this Creamy Tuna Sauce can pass as healthy, a dash of cream can’t do much harm can it?

In my recipe I did include sugar as one of the ingredients but if your sauce is not too acidic you can omit the sugar. I find that the level of acidity varies with the different brands of passata and sometimes you don’t need much sugar.

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Creamy Tuna Sauce
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Instructions
  1. Heat olive oil. Sauté onion until translucent
  2. Add garlic, chilli and dried herbs, fry for a minute.
  3. Add the passata, season with salt. Cook for a few minutes until the oil surfaces to the top.
  4. Add fresh cream and tuna. Heat through and serve
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I did post another version of my Vegetable Breyani or Biryani previously. However, this South African Vegetable Biryani is a long winded version and I would say more delicious. It is worth all the effort you put into it though.

This flavour-packed rice dish is an absolute favourite amongst vegetarians and goes down a treat even with meat-eaters. I call this South African Vegetable Biryani my “wedding version” as it tastes just like the one that was served at Indian weddings.  Especially if it’s accompanied by Dhall, you can double the recipe here, and a crunchy carrot salad. In South Africa Vegetable Biryani is typically served with dhall, do try it and you will thank me.

My list of spices may seem like a lot but it is these long list of spices that brings this delectable recipe together. South African Vegetable Biryani is a bold and flavorful dish. If it’s too spicy for you then you can always cool it down with some yogurt or raita. Lots of different vegetable can be used to create this dish but I prefer to use firm vegetable. There’s nothing worse than a mushy biryani. You have to be careful not to overcook your rice too.

Cooking the Biryani in the oven for an hour definitely keeps the grains whole and separated. I find that I am more in control of my cooking when it’s cooked in the oven. Biryani can easily scorch on the stovetop, if you not careful and it can be easily overcooked too. Rice is usually half-cooked before being added to the spiced veggies and you can add some turmeric or a little sprinkling of egg-yellow food colouring for the yellow colour. I love the addition of potatoes and you can steam and fry your potatoes. This method keeps the potatoes whole and speeds up the cooking process.


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South African Vegetable Biryani

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Instructions
  1. Cook the rice together with the elachie, cinnamon stick, some salt and turmeric (only if you not using food colouring) and set aside. If you are using food colouring sprinkle some over the rice but do not mix yet.

  2. Steam potatoes for a few minutes until almost cooked, season with some salt and shallow fry. Set aside

  3. Heat 1 tablespoon butter and 1 tablespoon vegetable or light olive oil. Add the cumin seeds and once it starts to burst add the cinnamon stick, black cardamom, star aniseed. Once fragrant add the bay leaf and onion together with the thyme and curry leaf

  4. Once onion is translucent add the ginger/garlic paste and fry for a minute

  5. Add the ground cumin, coriander, turmeric, garam masala, soomph, chilli powder and masala. Add a few drops of water and cook for a couple of minutes

  6. Add the vegetable, mix well. Season with salt. Cover and cook on medium heat. After 5 minutes add the mint and tomatoes. If your vegetable is drying up too quickly add some water and lower the temperature until the vegetable is cooked and tender.

  7. Add the rice and potatoes to the veggies. Mix it all together. Add a cup and a half of water. Scatter the cubes of butter over the rice and cook in the oven at 180 degrees celcius for 1 to 1&1/2 hours.


Recipe Notes

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For the vegetable, you can steam it for a few minutes until it's tender or you can cook it from scratch with the spices. I did steam my vegetable before adding to my spices. When adding the food colouring to the rice let is stand for a few minutes before using a fork to mix the colouring into the rice, this way it you will create little specks of colour in the rice. Do not substitute the butter with margarine, the flavour will definitely not be the same.


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I know, you must think I’m crazy, making lamb stew in summer. My 10-year-old has been nagging me to make him Lamb Stew for a few weeks now. I’ve brushed off his request but today the weather was slightly cooler, a little overcast and looked as if it was going to rain. So I thought it was my chance to get that Lamb Stew out-of-the-way, I hope he won’t ask again until Winter arrives.

You should have seen that face light up when he got home from school. It makes it all worth it if my kids are happy. It’s also a good way to get them to eat their veggies, what’s more nutritious than a wholesome stew loaded with veggies.

If I had more time in the day I would make some freshly baked bread rolls to go with the stew. Nothing beats dunking some fresh bread into all that delicious sauce. I don’t have time so they will have to settle for store-bought bread rolls. I have a cousin who makes a super delicious lamb potjie and my kids think it’s the best thing ever. A potjie in the week will obviously not be a wise decision so I normally turn it into a stew. She did give me the recipe but I didn’t make it exactly like her potjie,  however, it still tastes absolutely yummy. You can’t beat the comfort you get from a good home-cooked stew.

I added carrots, baby marrows and potatoes to my stew but you can use any veggies of your choice. Please be careful when adding veggies to the stew, as some cook quicker than others.  It’s also best to let your stew simmer on low heat until you get melt-in-your-mouth lamb. Please do try it, if you want to wait until Winter that’s okay too.

 

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Easy Lamb Stew
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Instructions
  1. Heat oil on medium heat. Mix the flour into the lamb cubes and season with a little salt and some pepper. Brown meat and set aside
  2. In the same pot add onion, bay leaf and thyme, rosemary and chilli. Add a few drops more oil if required. Once onion is translucent add the garlic and sauté for a minute
  3. Add the chilli powder and fry for a minute. Add the lamb back to the pot and mix well.
  4. Add the tomatoes and cook until the sauce is nearly dry. Mix the stock cube in one cup of warm water and add to the lamb
  5. Cook for about 15 minutes until lamb is half-cooked. Add the carrots and potatoes. Simmer on low heat until the potatoes and carrots are tender. Add another half cup of water if required
  6. Add the baby marrows and cook until they are tender
Recipe Notes

If you the tomatoes are too acidic you can add a pinch of sugar to your stew

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Summer calls for light, summery dishes with minimal effort and this dish is just that, Lemon Garlic Chicken. We have experienced some unusually hot days and I promise it’s on days like these you would rather let your family go starving. But being a mum I will go on a guilt trip if I don’t feed my family. I therefore settled on cooking something light, delicious and easy. And oh yes it is healthy too so that’s an added bonus.

I am trying to eat healthy, ,most days I win. Chicken is so versatile, there are endless healthy dishes you can make with it. It’s why I always have chicken breasts in my freezer.  I also found these beautiful rainbow carrots at the grocery store and I just loved the colours. I had to buy it because it just looked so pretty but I had no idea what I would cook with it at the time.

Seeing I had the carrots and some baby potatoes, Lemon Garlic Chicken seemed like the obvious choice. It’s all made in one dish, you pop everything into it and into the oven it goes. You only have to check it after an hour, blissful cooking. I added 8 garlic cloves, the garlic cloves were about medium size. If you are using bigger garlic cloves you can use a little less but the more garlic the better. You will see that I love throwing in my herbs, it just adds a whole lot of flavour that way. It’s easy to pick them out when serving. But you can do it your way.

From my experience with cooking chicken breasts you cook it on a low heat for a long time or you flash fry them. It’s the only way to get succulent, tender chicken. I cooked this dish for about an hour and a half, mostly because the potatoes needed to cook for a while until it was soft.  This resulted in the most tender chicken breasts. If you love Chicken with a little spice then you may want to try Creamy Sundried Tomato Chicken

 

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Lemon, Garlic Chicken
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
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MAIN COURSES CHICKEN
RECIPES MAIN COURSES
Servings
Ingredients
MAIN COURSES CHICKEN
RECIPES MAIN COURSES
Servings
Ingredients
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Add to Shopping List
This recipe is in your Shopping List
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees celcius
  2. Scrub the carrots and potatoes and set aside. Add a few drops of olive oil to a pan and brown the chicken breasts for a few seconds on both sides. Add the chicken breasts, carrots and potatoes to an ovenproof dish. Season with salt and pepper. Drizzle a generous amount of olive oil and then sprinkle in the herbs. Pour the lemon juice over.
  3. Cover the dish with foil and bake until chicken is moist and tender and potatoes and carrots are cooked
  4. Cut up the chicken and serve with the veggies. Drizzle the remaining juices over and serve
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