I love cooking, but don’t have a huge amount of time to prepare meals during the week as I commute to London every day. When I get home from work, I have about 40 mins before my husband gets home. So I like to set myself a bit of a challenge to cook a healthy meal from scratch using whatever’s in our fridge, and have it ready for when he gets home. It doesn’t always turn out brilliantly admittedly – there have been more than a few occasions when my husband has had to fake a smile when I’ve presented him with something that resembles the dog’s dinner!
I like planning what I’m going to cook on my train home from work, and usually get my inspiration from Pinterest. I don’t really like faffing around with measurements, so I tend to just guess the correct amounts to use. I’m also not a fan of fiddly things like finely chopping garlic or ginger, so I always use shortcuts, for example using a garlic mincer, or buying those little jars of ready-chopped ginger. Essentially, it’s all about speedy, simple cooking with no fuss.
As I’m trying to reduce my cholesterol, most of my evening meals are based around chicken, turkey, fish and lean beef. I bulk up my meals with lots of veg and beans, which sometimes turns a “serves 2” recipe into “serves 4”.
Here are some very easy and tasty recipes for you to try:-
1. Spiced Chicken with Apples
I like this recipe because it includes apples, which are one of the foods I’m trying to eat more of to help reduce my cholesterol. I haven’t tried the Swiss chard it recommends, because I never buy it in my weekly shop, but instead throw spinach or kale in with the chicken (along with the garlic). This also saves having to wash up another pan. You can also add butter beans or chickpeas to the chicken straight from the tin when you get to the simmer part of the recipe.
Click here to see the recipe by ‘Food Network’.
2. Terriyaki Salmon with Stir-Fry Vegetables
This goes well with brown rice, which takes about 35 mins to cook, so make sure you get your rice on the boil before starting the recipe. I like to sprinkle the cooked salmon with sesame seeds to add a bit of crunch.
Click here to see the recipe on the ‘Delicious Magazine’ website.
3. Honey Lemon Chicken
This recipe is really delicious and so easy to make. I have it with brown rice (remember to put it on the boil before you start on the recipe), quinoa or noodles. I add courgettes and peppers, which I cook with the chicken once it has sealed.
Cornstarch (cornflour) is a great gluten-free alternative to normal flour and can be used to thicken sauces. Rice wine vinegar is in the Oriental cooking section of big supermarkets (with the soy sauce etc).
You can marinate the chicken in the sauce for 10 minutes, or for up to 8 hours if you have a chance to do the prep before you go to work on the morning. I rarely prepare things far enough in advance to marinate things properly, but it will definitely make the meat a lot tastier and more tender if you have time.
Click here to see the recipe by ‘Gimme some oven’.
4. Simple Tasty Turkey Burgers
I really love burgers, so I’ve experimented with a lot of different homemade recipes. This recipe is so quick and simple, especially if you have one of those cheap mini electric choppers to do all the hard work for you.
Don’t forget to buy some nice crusty buns to serve them in, and I love to top them with a few slices of avocado. They go really well with the carrot and sweet potato fries in the recipe below.
Click here to see the recipe by ‘The Kitchen Shed’.
5. Baked carrot and sweet potato fries
I cook these a lot in our house. I always have carrots left in my fridge, as I buy one of those big cheap bags from the supermarket most weeks. This is a great way to use them up and sneak some extra veg into your meals. I never bother with the herbs – they taste great with just the salt and pepper. I add slices of green pepper too sometimes as they go really well with the orange carrots and sweet potatoes.
Be warned, they shrink a lot during cooking, so always cook more than you think you’ll need. If you’re short on time, you can stick these under the grill, but keep an eye on them as they can go from crispy to burnt in a split second.
Click here to see the recipe by ‘Wishful Chef’.
For more cholesterol-friendly recipes and tips on how to reduce cholesterol naturally, click here.