Easy Banting Weeknights Five easy comfort-food recipes
Try these five Banting-friendly suppers from Nick Charlie Key’s book, Jump On The Bant Wagon. It’s full of easy-to-make comfort foods that are delicious and can be whipped up after a day at work
Bangers & Cauliflower Mash
Serves 4 to 6 4 large onions, thinly sliced butter for frying salt and pepper simple cauliflower mash (recipe below right) 12 pork bangers 1 handful grated mature Cheddar cheese 1. Preheat the oven grill. 2. Fry the onions in some butter and allow to caramelise. 3. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. 4. Make the cauliflower mash using the recipe below. 5. Place the bangers on a baking tray under the grill and check them after 10 minutes. 6. Turn and allow the other side to crisp up. 7. Serve with warm mash and top with the onions and a sprinkling of grated Cheddar.
SIMPLE CAULIFLOWER MASH
Serves 4 to 6
1 head cauliflower 50g butter, melted 60ml fresh double cream 5ml grated nutmeg salt and pepper
1. Cut the cauliflower into florets and steam until soft.
2. Place the cauliflower in a colander and squeeze out the excess water.
3. Transfer to a mixing bowl and blend using a stick blender.
4. While blitzing, add the butter and cream. Sprinkle in the nutmeg and mix through well. Season to taste.
5. Keep blitzing until the mash has a smooth texture.
Fish with Vegetables Baked in Foil
Serves 6 1,5kg white-fish fillets ½ leek 1 large onion 2 to 3 cloves garlic 2 red or yellow peppers, deseeded 12 cherry tomatoes 1 head cabbage salt and pepper fresh thyme or parsley 125ml white wine 45ml olive oil 150g butter 1. Preheat oven to 200°C. Line a roasting pan with foil. 2. Cut the fish into appropriate portion sizes and place in the roasting pan. 3. Slice and chop all the vegetables and place them evenly around the fish. Add the seasoning and herbs. 4. Drizzle with wine and oil, and add little pats of butter. 5. Cover the pan with another piece of foil and fold at the joints. Bake for 40 minutes. 6. Serve with aïoli, pesto mayonnaise or any other rich and creamy dip.
baconwrapped chicken stuffed with Jalapeño & Cream Cheese
Serves 2 to 4 4 skinless chickenbreast fillets salt and pepper 120g cream cheese (any flavour; I’ve used both herb and sweetchilli versions with great success) 3 to 4 fresh or pickled jalapeño peppers, deseeded and diced 150g Cheddar cheese, grated (I like to use mature Cheddar for the robust flavour, but that’s really up to you) 8 to 10 rashers bacon (enough to fully wrap the chicken breasts) 1. Preheat oven to 200°C. 2. Lay the chicken breasts out on a chopping board or clean work surface and pound them flat with a meat mallet (or similar blunt object). 3. Season both sides of the flat chicken with salt and pepper. 4. Place a quarter of the cream cheese down the middle of each flattened chicken fillet, add the diced jalapeños and sprinkle the Cheddar cheese on top. 5. Roll up the chicken breast with the filling tight inside. Wrap the chicken in enough bacon to cover the outside of it and place in a greased baking dish. 6. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes until cooked, but be careful not to let it overcook and dry out.
Spicy Meat Curry
Serves 4 olive oil for frying 1 onion, chopped 5ml crushed garlic 15ml mild or medium curry powder 5ml ground coriander 5ml ground ginger 5ml turmeric 4 pods cardamom 1 chilli, deseeded and chopped (optional) 800g chicken, beef, veal or lamb cubes 1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes 1 red pepper, deseeded and sliced 350g green beans, sliced into 3cm lengths 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed salt and pepper 1. Heat the oil in a pot and fry the onion and garlic until soft. 2. Add the curry powder, coriander, ginger, turmeric, cardamom and chilli (if using), and cook for 5 minutes. 3. Add your choice of meat to the curry mixture and brown it. Add the chopped tomatoes and mix through. 4. Add the red pepper, green beans and sweet-potato cubes. 5. Transfer everything to a pressure cooker and cook for 45 to 60 minutes. Season to taste.
Serves 4 to 6 MINCE SAUCE olive or coconut oil for frying 1 onion, chopped 10ml crushed garlic 1 x 250g punnet mushrooms, sliced 500g beef mince 1 x 115g tin tomato paste 1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes 150ml water 30ml dried Italian herbs 15ml salt (or to taste) 30ml xylitol cayenne pepper (optional) 200g grated Cheddar cheese PASTA 2 brinjals 125g baby marrows (optional) CHEESE SAUCE 250ml whipping cream 250g mascarpone cheese 3 egg yolks nutmeg and salt to taste 1. For the mince sauce, heat some oil in a pot and fry the onion and garlic until soft. Add the mushrooms and fry until soft and cooked through. Add the mince, stirring until browned. Stir in the tomato paste, followed by the tinned tomatoes and water. 2. Add the herbs, salt, xylitol and cayenne pepper, and stir through. Leave to simmer for 30 minutes, uncovered, while you prepare the other elements of the dish. 3. Thinly slice the brinjals and salt them on one side. Leave to sweat and then pat dry on both sides with paper towel. Fry in a frying pan with coconut or olive oil until brown on both sides. 4. Remove from the pan and set aside, ready for layering. 5. Thinly slice the baby marrows lengthways and set them aside, ready for layering. For the cheese sauce, beat the cream, mascarpone and egg yolks together until creamy and smooth. Add nutmeg and salt to taste. 6. Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease an ovenproof dish. 7. Layer the dish as follows: start with a layer of mince sauce, followed by a layer of brinjals and baby marrows, some cheese sauce and a layer of grated cheese. Repeat the layers. 8. Bake for 45 minutes. Allow to stand for 20 minutes before serving.
TIP: When frying the onions, make sure the heat is set at mediumlow so as not to burn them while extracting maximum flavour and sweetness.
TIP: Any white fish with a mild taste, like hake, kingklip or cod, will work for this recipe.
TIP: Be careful not to overcook the chicken, as it can dry out.
TIP: Use your choice of chicken, beef, veal or lamb, according to your taste or budget.
TIP: Use a variety of chopped fresh herbs like basil, origanum, thyme, marjoram and rosemary instead of the dried herbs.
Jump On The Bant Wagon by Nick Charlie Key (Human & Rousseau), R230, Takealot