Archive for the ‘dieting’ Category


Vegetable Nut Roast

September 26, 2007
Vegetable nut roast

When I was trying to come up with a nut roast recipe, this was the other on my shortlist. It has a much higher nut content than the cheese and tomato version. This also makes it more crumbly, but also gives it more of a crunch, and a definite nuttiness!

Recipe for vegetable nut roast
600g mixed nuts: peanuts, cashew nuts, hazelnuts, walnuts
100g mixed seeds: pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, flax seeds
225g tin of green lentils
1 medium aubergine
2 sticks celery
1 medium carrot
1 medium courgette
1 onion
2 cloves garlic
100g brown bread crumbs
1 egg
2 tsp oregano
1 tsp thyme
1 tsp marjoram
1 tsp paprika
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tablespoons mango chutney
50g cheddar cheese
salt and pepper

First, put half the nuts in a blender and whizz until they are in fine, 1mm chunks, then whizz the other half until they are a little finer and put into a large mixing bowl.

Finely chop the onions and garlic, then gently fry them in a large frying pan. Chop the aubergine into 1cm cubes and add to the pan with the herbs, spices and seasoning and cook until soft.


Meanwhile grate the carrots, celery and courgette and then add to the pan and cook together for about 10 minutes.


Stir in the soy sauce, mango chutney and egg and then add the drained lentils, nuts and breadcrumbs and mix it all together evenly. Then transfer it all to a large silicon loaf tin, top with the grated cheese and cook at 190°C for 45 minutes.


When it’s cooked, let it cool for a couple of minutes, then carefully turn out onto a chopping board, where it can be sliced to serve.

– If all the grating and chopping is a pain, you can cheat by chopping it in a food blender – it saves load of time. The end result will be smaller pieces than if you had grated it, but that really doesn’t matter in the finished nut roast.

– If you or any of your diners think nut roast as a main course is not manly enough, it can also be served as a delicious side dish with pork or chicken, or any other meal you fancy putting it with (this made it much more palatable for Mr Rice).

– This nut roast freezes really well. Just cut the slices to the size you want, then wrap carefully and tightly in cling film. Re-heat it in the microwave with some extra grated cheese instead of cheese on toast!

© Katheryn Rice 2007


Mr Rice’s Halloumi and Chorizo Sandwiches

September 1, 2007


Mr Rice is getting into the high protein, lower carb way of eating, and he cleverly used this as a basis for these no bread, high-protein sandwiches.

Halloumi and Chorizo both have very strong flavours, but rather than clashing, they go very well. The salty, chewy cheese really teams up well with the tangy, chewy meat. I think what makes it works so well is that the flavours are equally sttrong, so rather than one dominate the other, they both get their message across. The houmous underneath smoothens everything out, and it’s all wrapped up in a crispy lettuce leaf. Maximum protein and minimum carbohydrate.

Recipe for Mr Rice’s Halloumi and Chorizo Sandwiches
½ pack of Halloumi Cheese
8 slices of Chorizo
4 crisp lettuce leaves
½ tub of houmous

Slice the halloumi into cm thick portions and cook on both sides under a medium grill. Grill or fry the chorizo slices. Assemble as follows: lettuce, houmous, chorizo, halloumi.

Fold the lettuce around the topping and tuck in.

© Katheryn Rice 2007


Courgette & Ginger Muffins

August 18, 2007

These weird-sounding cakes give you the feeling you are eating something pretty healthy whilst still tasting lovely. My initial reason for making them was thatI had too many courgettes, thanks to a bumper Abel & Cole delivery. And again, the organic grocers have come up trumps with a really original recipe, which I have adapted here, to include more protein and slow-burning carbohydrates. Courgette is not an obvious cake ingredient, but it adds a really light taste, lots of moisture and a soft little crunch.


Recipe for Courgette and Ginger Muffins
50g wholemeal plain flour
150g ground almonds
1 tsp grated fresh ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp salt
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
½ tsp baking powder
2 medium courgettes, grated
120ml vegetable oil
240ml honey
2 eggs, beaten
ginger syrup
zest of one orange
100g stem ginger
2 tbsp pumpkin seeds
2 tbsp sunflower seeds
2 tbsp linseeds

200g cream cheese
3 tbsp unsalted butter
50g icing sugar

In a medium sized bowl mix together the flour, ground almonds, fresh ginger, cinnamon, salt, bicarbonate of soda and baking powder. In larger bowl, combine the vegetable oil, honey, eggs and ginger syrup and stir thoroughly until combined, then add the courgettes and mix well. In a third, smaller bowl mix the orange zest, chopped stem ginger and all the seeds until everything is equally distributed. Then add this lot to the courgette mixture, and finally add the flour mixture. Stir carefully until all properly combined, and transfer straight to your cooking tins. These quantities make a fair amount of mixture, and it’s up to you what kind of tins you use. I use a combination of large and small muffin tins, and a flat tray-bake style tin as well.

Cook in the oven at 180C for 20-25 minutes, until golden and a tester comes out clean. Leave to cool for a while before removing them from the tins to a cooling rack.

Whilst the muffins are cooking, make the icing. Mix all the ingredients together, using an electric whisk, until the mixture is pale and fluffy, then cool in the fridge until needed. Smooth the icing generously over the muffins and chill in the fridge. They are lovely and moist, so will not dry out in the fridge. They also freeze really well.

© Katheryn Rice 2007


Beetroot, carrot and potato cakes

August 11, 2007

You need to limber up for a bit of a grating session for this recipe but it’s well worth it. I’ve adapted it from an Abel & Cole recipe, using wholemeal flour and also including lentils, adding protein and lowering the overall GL value.

Recipe for beetroot, carrot and potato cakes
2 medium beetroots, greens removed, peeled & grated
2 medium carrots, skin on, grated
2 medium potatoes, skin on, grated
½ medium onion, thinly sliced
½ tin of green lentils
1 egg, beaten
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
25g wholemeal plain flour
3 chopped spring onions
1 garlic clove, crushed
3 tbsp olive oil

Preheat oven to 150C/300F/gas2. Combine all the vegetables in a large bowl, then mix in the lentils, egg, salt and pepper. Sieve in the flour and seasoning and stir well until it’s all blended.

Heat half the oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. Using 2-3 tablespoons of mixture per cake drop four cakes into the frying pan. Flatten each out with a spatula, and cook until just browned and cooked through, which should take 3-4 minutes per side. Be careful that the pan isn’t too hot, or the cakes will burn before they’ve cooked in the middle. When they are done on each side transfer the cakes to a tray in the oven to keep warm, then repeat with remaining mixture until finished.

Serve with a green salad, houmous and if you’re feeling frivolous, put them under the grill and melt some cheese on top.

© Katheryn Rice 2007


Weird but tasty snack – Oatcakes with cream cheese and anchovies

June 3, 2007


I used to eat anchovies on hot buttered toast, but I don’t eat much toast these days. This is a slightly healthier, low GL version. Oat cakes have a wholesome, rough texture, so slather on some smooth cream cheese and then blast it with the tang of the anchovies. A delicious post-pub snack.

© Katheryn Rice 2007


Roasted vegetable & feta quiche with lentil and oat base

May 21, 2007


The special base for this quiche has been on my list of things to do for ages.

I love making quiche. It’s so versatile, and perfect for taking to work or as a packed lunch. You can put all your favourite foods in, in whatever combinations you like, and apart from the pastry it is pretty healthy. So, how can you make quiche without pastry? With a lentil and oat base of course!

Recipe for Quiche with a lentil and oat base

125g red split lentils
1 onion chopped and sauted in bit of oil and butter
50g rolled oats
50g ground almonds
1tbsp tomato puree
1tsp dried herbs, or cumin, or garlic
50g grated cheese
1 beaten egg (or egg white if preferred)
Salt and pepper to taste

2 onions
1 red onion
1 red pepper
1 yellow pepper
1 Courgette
200 ml milk
2 eggs
4 tbsps creme fraiche
50g grated cheddar
200g feta, chopped into cubes

Chop all the vegetables, drizzle with oil and roast in the oven at 200C, stirring every 15 minutes while you prepare the base.

Boil the lentils in twice their volume of water for about 25 mins and keep stirring until they break down into a thick paste. Add the oats, almonds, tomato puree and seasoning so it forms a sticky dough. It’s too soft and moist to roll out, so press it into a flan dish with your hands. If it’s too moist add a few more oats and almonds. If it’s too dry add a little more water.
Carefully press the mixture into the base of the tin, levelling it out so it is at least 1cm thick all the way round. Bake the base in the oven for 15 minutes at 200C.


Meanwhile, prepare the filling. In a bowl, beat the eggs, then add the milk, cream fraiche and seasoning and whisk together until smooth. When the base is ready, place half of the feta evenly on the base, then spread the vegetables out on top, followed by the rest of the feta. Then pour the milk and eggs mixture over the whole thing, and top with the grated cheese. Cook for 30 minutes, or until the top is golden brown.

Let the base cool for ten minutes, then slice and serve with a salad of your choice.


  • Invest in a silicon rubber flan tin – this base is really sticky, and is tricky to get out of a metal base. The silicon base is much more manageable.
  • Baking the base blind dries it out. If it is too thin, tiny holes will appear in the base, causing the filling to leak out as you pour it in.
  • Be careful with the filling you use. Fillings with high water content, like asparagus or courgettes are likely to release more water during the cooking process. This can soak the base and make a watery quiche. Soak up the excess water with kitchen paper, or if you have time, leave the filling to dry out for a couple of hours before you cook it.

© Katheryn Rice 2007


Some facts about lentils

May 20, 2007


Later on today I am going to make something I have been planning to cook for ages: quiche with a lentil and oat base. In my bid to eat more healthily and follow some of the Holford Principles, I am trying to avoid carbohydrate-heavy food like pastry.

In the meantime, here are some wiki facts about lentils:

  • They contain 26% protein – the highest content in any vegetable except soy beans
  • Other goodness includes a high proportion of fibre (31% in green lentils, 11% in red lentils) and B vitamins
  • Lentils have virtually no fat
  • Half of the world’s lentil production takes place in India
  • The largest exporter of lentils is Canada
  • You can make a kind of savoury pastry from lentils and oats

© Katheryn Rice 2007

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