Meal Planning Monday 29 August

I’ve got to go back to work tomorrow after 2-and-a-bit weeks of GLORIOUS holidaying around the lovely British coast. Bye bye sea and sand, hello office😦

Hoping my tasty meals can cheer me up!

Monday lunch – Feta and Black Olive Salad
Monday dinner – Chicken, Tomato Rice and Corn-on-the-cob

Tuesday lunch – Roast Garlic and Basil Hummus and Oatcakes With Tomatoes
Tuesday dinner – Almost Veggie Chilli (I spiced it up with some left-over bacon) with brown rice (who knew brown rice was so tasty and chewy and a million miles away from white rice which I always find far too bland to enjoy?!)

Wednesday lunch – Roast Garlic and Basil Hummus and Oatcakes With Tomatoes
Wednesday dinner – Lentil, Tomato and Bacon Pasta

Thursday lunch – Ham and Tomato Sandwich
Thursday dinner – Pork Chop With Chunky Cannellini Bean Mash and Peas

Friday lunch – Ham and Tomato Sandwich
Friday dinner – Out

Saturday lunch – Poached Eggs on Toast with Tomatoes
Saturday dinner – Steak With Chunky Cannellini Bean Mash and Peas

Sunday lunch – Poached Eggs on Toast with Tomatoes
Sunday dinner – Fish Cakes and Peas

Nando’s Mediterranean Salad

Nando's Salad 2

Every time I go to Nando’s I order the Mediterranean Salad with a side order of chips. I’m not like that at other restaurants. Ok – I am totally like that at my local Thai restaurant, where I love their Thai Green Curry so much I know I can never beat it with anything else. I will never order it again with chilli chips though. That was just OTT. Anyway, I’m digressing…

The Mediterranean Salad at Nando’s is sooooooo utterly moreish. I think it’s partly due to the salty feta and olives, and mainly due to the scrumptious salad dressing they serve. I can’t find it ANYWHERE in the shops – or online. Can anyone help?

Nando's Salad 2

So I’ve left it out here, and just used a sprinkling of extra-virgin Greek olive oil and lemon juice. This was still DIVINE and put a real spring in my step. Would be great with chips…

Nando’s Mediterranean Salad
(serves 1)

100g feta cheese, cubed
50g sun dried tomatoes
about 12 olives, pitted
about a 4-inch chunk of cucumber, chopped
2 tomatoes, quartered
1 handful spinach
1 handful mixed leaves
splash extra-virgin olive oil (I used Greek – it has a really peppery flavour)
juice of half a lemon
dried oregano


1. Just mix it right up and sprinkle with the oregano!


Warm Roasted Mushroom and Egg Salad

Egg and Roasted Mushroom Salad

If you’re a regular reader you’ll know I’m into my salads, and always trying to make them a little different. I love eating mushrooms raw in salads, but this time I decided to roast the mushrooms and boil the eggs at the last minute, adding both warm to the leaves and tomatoes.

I’ve never made a warm salad before, as I’m always a little concerned the raw ingredients will go soft – but I can confirm, as long as you add everything together at the last minute – there’s still plenty of crunch going on. Roasting the mushroom also means you get all the lovely juices to sprinkle over the salad.

The result was a happy, healthy little lunch that left me smiling and satisfied.

Hope you enjoy!

Warm Roasted Mushroom and Egg Salad
(serves 1)

1 large flat mushroom
drizzle of olive oil
1 tomato, quartered
handful of spinach
handful of mixed salad leaves
half a grated carrot
2 hard-boiled eggs
juice of half a lemon
salt and pepper


1. Pre-heat the oven to 200 degrees and roast the mushroom, drizzled with the olive oil, for 10 minutes.
2. Boil the eggs until cooked to your liking.3. Chop up the eggs and mushrooms and combine with all the other ingredients.

Coconut Rich Energy Balls

Coconut Energy Balls (2)

Here’s another energy ball recipe, adapted from Deliciously Ella’s grand recipe. I had lots of desiccated coconut left over from when I made these lovely little treats, and I fancied a bigger hit of coconut in each bite anyway, so I just added lots more to the mix.

They’re SUPREME for keeping you going between meals – and I’ve been enjoying them as a post-swim snack too. Rock on.

Coconut Rich Energy Balls
(makes around 25)

150g desiccated coconut (plus extra for rolling the balls in once finished)
80g roasted almonds
200g dates
2 tablespoons peanut butter
2 tablespoons coconut oil
splash water

1. Roast the almonds for around 10 minutes at 180 degrees

2. Add all of the other ingredients to the food processor and whizz

3. Shape into about 25 balls, rolling each one in the desiccated coconut

4. Chill in the fridge for a couple of hours

Meal Planning Monday 22 August 2016

It’s a jumbled-up meal plan this week as I’m away until Wednesday, have guests on Friday and we’re both out at the weekend – but I’ve started a little diet to help shed a few post-holiday pounds, and determined to keep on track. And on the subject of weight – why do people say it’s easier to eat healthily in the summer? Erm… cold rosé in the beer garden, sausages on the BBQ, hummus, hummus and more hummus on a picnic??

Anyway, this is what I / we’ll be eating in this busy little week

Monday lunch – picnic of a big M+S salad, with one of their lovely dips
Monday dinner – out – maybe an Italian?

Tuesday lunch – another big M+S salad for another picnic
Tuesday dinner – out again – tapas?

Wednesday lunch – takeout sushi
Wednesday dinner – and another trip to M+S for a picnic for the train home🙂

Thursday lunch – Omelette + tomatoes
Thursday dinner – Sweet Potato Falafels with Salad

Friday lunch – Omelette + tomatoes
Friday dinner – BBQ at ours!!!

Saturday lunch – Scrambled egg on toast
Saturday dinner – Veggie Chilli

Sunday lunch – Home made chunky vegetable soup
Sunday dinner – Pasta With Tomato and Spinach Sauce

Hope this gives you some ideas!




White Asparagus, Roasted Beetroot and Pepper Salad

White Asparagus, Roasted Beetroot and Pepper Salad

It’s the sprinkles that make this salad special. Warm nutty pine kernels and little pops of pomegranate bring the roasted veg alive, and make this more than just another virtuous lunch (although I like a good dose of piety with my meal planning).

We first had white asparagus while holidaying in Germany. They seem to go in for it there, although it’s perfectly common in jars in supermarkets in the UK. It’s very tender and more mild-flavoured than green. Great for the months of the year when fresh asparagus is not in season (so most of the time).

It’s a little bit bitter, as is the beetroot, so the sweetness of the pomegranate and pepper contrasts really nicely. I’d forgotten about it until I saw a little jar in my local supermarket, but it’s firmly Back On The Menu and just makes this salad a little bit different.

I’m linking up with No Croutons Required, hosted jointly by Jacqueline at Tinned Tomatoes and Lisa at Lisa’s Kitchen.

Hope you enjoy!

White Asparagus, Roasted Beetroot and Pepper Salad
(serves 2)

1 red pepper
splash olive oil
2 tablespoons pine nuts
1 x 190g jar white asparagus, drained and chopped
1 pack of vacuum packed beetroot, quartered
3 fresh tomatoes, quartered
seeds from one pomegranate
splash cider vinegar
salt and pepper


1. Drizzle the pepper with olive oil and roast at 180 degrees for around 30 minutes
2. Heat the pine nuts in a dry pan for about 5 minutes or until they turn brown. Watch them really carefully as they burn really quickly!
3. Once the pepper has roasted, cut it up into small pieces and then mix with all of the other ingredients.

No Croutons Required - Call for Vegetarian Soups and Salads Submissions for March


Peanut Butter Energy Balls

Peanut Butter Energy Balls

I don’t even want to begin this post without referencing Deliciously Ella. I’ve just bought her cookbook, and already made the Squash Risotto, which was delicious. As many people will know by now, since in a few year’s she’s become one of the biggest new foodies on the scene, she eats only plant-based food, making her diet vegan and dairy free. She also avoids any processed food and gluten, for personal health reasons.

One of the reasons I bought her book is that we love eating vegetarian food, but since Mr Roast Chicken can’t eat cheese – or really any rich, creamy cheese-like sauces – we usually opt for non-dairy vegan food when we’re going veggie, and I need some more inspiration for different yummy ideas.

It’s a great book – and I can’t wait to try the other recipes – her chillies and curries look pretty delicious.

I loved the sound of her Classic Almond and Cacao Energy Balls,  but I don’t really like raw cacao, and love peanut butter – so I made a couple of swaps to make these Peanut Butter Energy Balls. The recipe is very much based on Deliciously Ella though – so I wanted to make sure she’s properly referenced.

Hope you enjoy – next up for me will be trying these with cashews🙂

Peanut Butter Energy Balls

Peanut Butter Energy Balls
(makes 25)

100g oats
200g roasted almonds
400g medjool dates
2 tablespoons peanut butter
splash water
2 tablespoons coconut oil
desiccated coconut, to roll the balls in


1. After you’ve roasted the almonds (just put them in a tray at 180 degrees for 10 minutes), blend them with the oats in the food processor.

2. Add all of the other ingredients to the food processor and whizz up.

3. Shape into about 25 balls, rolling each one in the desiccated coconut.

4. Chill in the fridge for a couple of hours before devouring🙂