Wintry Chicken Cacciatore recipe

Halloween has been and gone and we’re now unmistakably into the winter season, so it’s time to make the most of the veggie of the moment – butternut squash – with this rich and delicious Chicken Cacciatore.

For those of you like me and using Weight Watchers to manage your weight, this is the ideal warming dish for those chilly winter nights when you just want to crawl up under a blanket and eat comforting food. A steal at eight WW points, and under 400 cals, you can add some carbs like crusty bread or rice and still have a low point dish.


ChickenCacciatore

Ingredients (serves 2)

Time to make: 90 minutes

Half a butternut squash, chopped into chunks

Eight black olives, whole

One onion, roughly chopped

Two garlic cloves, finely chopped

One slice of pancetta, finely sliced

One leek, chopped

One sprig of rosemary, finely sliced

One bay leaf, whole

One tin of tomatoes

Splash of balsamic vinegar

250 mL chicken stock

Two small chicken breasts, chopped

150g mushrooms, whole

One deseeded chilli (if you want to add a bit of spice)

Olive oil

Chicken Cacciatore 2

This delicious and simple dish can be made the night before because the flavours infuse overnight and make it even tastier to eat. It’s also three of your five a day, so you can feel totally virtuous eating this bad boy.

Instructions

  1. Set the oven to 190 C
  2. Add the pancetta and rosemary to a pan with the olive oil. Cook on a medium heat for two minutes
  3. To the pan add the onion, chilli (if using) and garlic and cook for ten minutes
  4. Once the onions are looking translucent, add the butternut squash, the mushrooms, the bay leaf and the chicken
  5. Add the chicken stock and balsamic and reduce down slightly
  6. Then add the tinned tomatoes and bring to a simmer
  7. Add in the olives and stir
  8. Put the dish in the oven with the lid on, and cook for one hour

And added bonus, I washed off the seeds from the butternut squash, added them to the pumpkin seeds I’d saved from my Halloween display (#wholesome) and roasted them with salt and chilli powder – delicious! They tasted like popcorn, very very tasty and have since used them on salads to add a bit of crunch.

Pumpkin seeds

Have a great week everyone!

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Skinny eats: Chicken Roulade with Cabbage

Even though it’s only the end of August, I look out the window to a torrent of rain, bluster and grey skies. How depressing.

So I warmed up the house with this wintry and filling recipe. At 12 Weight Watchers, it’s slightly more than I’d usually use up in one meal, but you get a lot of munch for your points so I think it’s worth it as a treat.

In addition to that, cabbage is one of the world’s healthiest vegetables – packed with cancer preventing minerals and vitamins – at an absolute steal in comparison to other ‘super-foods’ like its more popular cousin, kale.

cabbage

Ingredients (serves two):

  • Two chicken breasts
  • 80g feta cheese
  • Rocket
  • Half a red cabbage, shredded
  • Two rashers bacon, fat trimmed and chopped
  • 75ml Balsamic vinegar
  • One granny smith apple peeled and chopped
  • One onion, chopped
  • One calorie spray
  • Salt and pepper
  1. Cover the chicken on both sides with cling film, get a rolling pin and bash it till it’s flat – very satisfying!
  2. At one end, add the feta, salt, pepper and rocket and roll tightly and wrap in the cling film, twisting the ends, set aside
  3. Meanwhile, fry up the onion and bacon together in a hot pan using the one calorie spray
  4. When browned, add in the cabbage and fry for a further 10 minutes
  5. Add the balsamic vinegar, stir, put on the lid and leave to simmer for 50 minutes, stirring occasionally
  6. Meanwhile, poach the chicken parcels in enough water to cover them completely for 10 minutes
  7. Heat a pan with some one calorie spray, unwrap the chicken carefully so as not to unravel the roulades, then add to the pan and cook for a further 10-15 minutes to brown and finish off

Serve by slicing the chicken into 2cm slices, and laying on top of the cabbage. You can have this as it is, or add some roasties for another 5-8 WW points (depending on how many you have).

NOM.

Skinny eats: Spaghetti al la Puttanesca

I’m on Weight Watchers and am discovering ways of cooking delicious, flavoursome meals without compromising on taste or texture.

The thing I’m enjoying the most about this process is eating so many more vegetables that usual. I have been doing Meat Free Mondays recently which is a fantastic idea on so many levels, because you can do your bit for the environment whilst enjoying healthy, disease-preventing meals.

This meal in particular is AMAZING, one of my favourites, and hits the mark on price and taste at just 3 Weight Watchers points.

Spaghetti al la Puttanesca

OK…so if you happen to eat this on a day not beginning with M, then you can add the anchovies, but it can also make an amazing vegetarian dish.

Ingredients (serves two)

  • Handful of capers
  • One garlic clove, chopped
  • Handful of black olives, chopped
  • 1 chilli, chopped
  • 4 Anchovies
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 calorie spray
  • Tinned tomato
  • Courgette spaghetti
  1. Heat the 1 calorie spray on the hob and then add the capers, olives, garlic, chilli and anchovies. Cook on a medium heat for around 4-5 minutes or until the garlic is soft
  2. Meanwhile, drain the courgette spaghetti (it gets quite soggy) and put it in a sieve over a bowl. Lightly sprinkle the salt and leave to drain
  3. Add in the tinned tomatoes, turn up the heat and simmer for around 10-15 minutes
  4. Once cooked, drain the courgette and add into the sauce. Stir and serve.

So simple, quick, easy and tasty. It’s a great meal for when you’re craving a big dinner but don’t have many points left. It’s also good for after the gym.