Despite warm weather on the horizon (maybe even a mini heatwave over the Easter weekend!) the evenings are still chilly and we’re still eating warming food from the oven rather than from the barbecue until then. But I have been giving the traditional slow-cooked casserole mix something of a summery lift and boosting the protein so that is very nourishing for bariatric eating.
This chicken casserole with warming spicy flavours has been given a hint of sweetness by adding apples to the pot – their subtle fragrance complements the chicken and vegetables, and the added canned green lentils (very convenient) boosts the protein considerably. It can be cooked in the oven or on the hob – whichever method suits you best.
It’s also a budget friendly recipe for great mid-week eating. I serve jacket baked potatoes with it for the rest of the family but some mash is also good. Talking of which do try my absolute favourite – a cauliflower and white bean one – no hint of cauliflower can be detected – it really is fabulous (click here to go to the recipe).
ONE-FOR-THE-POT CHICKEN, APPLE AND LENTIL CASSEROLE
low-fat cooking spray or mist
8 chicken thighs (or 4 chicken legs)
2 apples (I used South African Pink Lady ones), cored and chopped
1 red or white onion, sliced
1 large carrot, chopped
2 celery sticks/stalks, chopped
1 red pepper/capsicum, cored, deseeded and chopped
150 ml/2/3 cup unsweetened apple juice (or dry cider)
400 ml/1¾ cups chicken stock/bouillon
2 tsp ground coriander
400 g/14 oz can green lentils, rinsed and drained
salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tsp chicken gravy granules
chopped parsley to garnish
- Preheat the oven to 190 C/375 F/gas 5 if you wish to cook this in the oven.
- Spritz a large flameproof casserole with low-fat cooking spray or mist. Heat, add the chicken and cook for about 4-5 miutes, turning occasionally until browned on all sides.
- Add the apple, onion, carrot, celery and red pepper and cook for 2 minutes. Add the apple juice or cider and stock/bouillon. Stir in the coriander, lentils and salt and pepper to taste.
- Cover and cook on the hob over a low heat for 1¼ hours, or cover and cook in the oven for the same time.
- Just before serving, stir in the gravy granules to thicken slightly and sprinkle with chopped parsley to garnish.
WLS PORTION: ½
CALORIES PER PORTION: 412
PROTEIN: 45.2 g
CARBOHYDRATE: 31.9 g
FAT: 11.9 g
Image courtesy of http://www.beautifulcountrybeautifulfruit.com