This morning I had a request from Mark for some stew or casserole recipes. Well by coincidence I cooked a healthy chicken casserole over the weekend which would suit him admirably. It’s made with skinless and boneless chicken thigh fillets which when cooked become meltingly tender. I like this dish for a number of reasons….it uses low cost and seasonal ingredients like leeks (so it makes a great Bariatric Budget Buster recipe); it cooks quickly on the hob as a one-pot dish (so less washing up); has a fabulously high amount of protein (even a bariatric portion weighs in at 19g); and it uses the only herbs in my garden that have survived the cold snap…bay leaves and fresh thyme. The recipe serves 3 (allowing 2 thigh fillets for a normal sized portion) but could be stretched for heartier appetites with a little extra mashed potato if liked. It also freezes well.
HEALTHY CHICKEN AND LEEK CASSEROLE
low-fat cooking spray
6 skinless and boneless chicken thigh fillets (about 500g/1lb)
2 cloves garlic, finely sliced
400g/14 oz pack trimmed leeks, thinly sliced
400g/14 oz can haricot/Navy, Boston, White or Fagioli beans, drained and rinsed
3-4 fresh sprigs of thyme
1 fresh or dried bay leaf
150 ml/2/3 cup chicken stock/bouillon
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. Lightly spritz a frying or saute pan with low-fat spray. Heat, add the chicken thighs and cook over a high heat until browned on all sides. Drain on absorbent kitchen paper and keep warm.
2. Add the garlic and leeks to the pan and cook over a low heat for 3-4 minutes until softened but not browned. Add the beans, thyme, bay leaf, stock/bouillon and salt and pepper to taste. Simmer for a further 4 minutes.
3. Arrange the chicken thighs on top of the beans, cover and cook over a low heat for 15-20 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and tender.
WLS PORTION: 1/2
* Suitable for freezing
CALORIES PER PORTION: 370
Image courtesy of Waitrose