One Tray Chicken, Pumpkin and Mushroom Bake

This was a crazy Saturday afternoon experiment. While it didn’t turn out Insta-pic perfect, it did make for some fantastic meal prep with minimal washing up.

Ingredients (serves 4) 

  • 200g Kent pumpkin
  • 2 large sweet potatoes
  • 500g mushrooms
  • 1 bunch asparagus
  • 150g baby spinach leaves
  • 4 small chicken breasts
  • 1/4 cup reduced salt chicken stock
  • 1.4 cup fresh chopped parsley
  • 4 fresh basil leaves
  • 1 microwave packet of brown, red and wild rice

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 200*C. Lightly spray a baking dish with oil.
  2. Wash and chop the pumpkin and potatoes into small pieces and add to the dish. Bake until starting to soften (15-20 minutes).
  3. Add the mushrooms, asparagus and chicken breasts to the dish and bake until the chicken is almost cooked through (20 minutes). Add the spinach leaves and herbs and bake for a further 5 minutes until the leaves are wilted.
  4. Just prior to serving, cook the rice as per the packet directions and add to the dish.

Peanut Butter Protein Brownies

Peanut butter, banana and chocolatey goodness with the added benefits of being high fibre, low in refined sugar AND high protein? These gloriously fudgy mouthfuls may just be the best brownies ever!

Ingredients (makes 9-12 depending on how you cut them!) 

  • 1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 1/2 cup flaxseed meal (can substitute with LSA)
  • 1/2 cup cacao pea protein (I use hazelnut cacao pea protein by Botanika Blends)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbs cacao (can substitute with cocoa powder, or carob for something sweeter)
  • 2 tbs coconut oil, melted
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 extra-ripe bananas
  • 3 tbsp natural peanut butter (i.e. no added oil, salt or sugar – I use crunchy PB by Mayvers)

Note if you prefer yours sweeter, you can also add 2 tbs maple syrup or coconut sugar.

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180*C and line a brownie tray with baking paper.
  2. In a bowl, mash the bananas, then add the eggs and oil and mix until well combined.
  3. Add the flour, flaxseed, pea protein, cacao and baking powder to the mix and again, stir everything until well combined.
  4. Pour the mixture into the brownie tray, then swirl the peanut butter on top (place blobs about 1/3rd of the tray apart from each other, then use a fork to swirl into the mixture).
  5. Bake until a sewer comes out clean (about 20-30 minutes). Allow to cool before cutting.

For a bit of crunch, you can also add your favourite nuts or cacao nibs to the mix! 

Muesli Banana Bites

Banana bites, doo-doo doo-doo-doo. (It’s a Muppet joke, sorry).

These tasty morsels are deliciously moreish, full of fibre and make for a satisfying snack that’s easy to hide in my scrub pocket!

Ingredients (makes 12)

  • 2 large over-ripe bananas
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk or mylk (I used hazelnut coconut milk for something different!)
  • 1/2 cup flaxseed meal
  • 1 cup raw muesli
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup coconut flour (can substitute with almond or hazelnut meal)
  • 2 tbsp melted cocoa butter (can substitute for Nuttalex or butter or coconut oil)

Method

  1.  Preheat the oven to 200*C and grease or line a 12 cup capacity muffin tray.
  2. Mash the banana and mix with the eggs, milk and butter until combined.
  3. Mix the dry ingredients together, then add the wet ingredient mix and mix well.
  4. Pour into the muffin tray and bake until golden (15-20 minutes).
  5. Serve warm with natural peanut butter or a squirt of maple syrup!

If you like them a little sweeter, try adding 2 tbsp maple syrup into the mix, or experiment by adding some chopped dates or raw dark chocolate – yum!

Pavlamingtons

The Pavlamington is the glorious love child between a rich sweet lamington and a particularly frisky meringue. This recipe is a variation of my favourite pavlova recipe by Donna Hay, made all the more exciting with the addition of chocolate, coconut and strawberry jam.

Ingredients 

  • 4 egg whites
  • 1 tsp raspberry vinegar (or white vinegar)
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • 100g dark chocolate
  • 1 cup dessicated coconut
  • 1/2 cup strawberry jam
  • 1/2 cup thickened cream

Method 

  1. Preheat the oven to 120*C and line a couple of trays with baking paper.
  2. With an electric mixer, whisk the egg whites until peaks form, then add the sugar one teaspoon at a time until dissolved. Once glossy, add the vinegar and beat for another 2 minutes.
  3. Place the meringue mixture into a piping bag fitted with a reasonably broad nozzle (or you can cut the corner off a plastic zip lock bag). Pipe the meringue into 50c piece sized discs onto the baking trays, and bake until firm (about 40-50 minutes). Set aside to cool.
  4. In a saucepan over medium heat, gently heat the chocolate and cream until melted and mixed through. Set aside to cool slightly.
  5. To assemble the Pavlamingtons, sandwich two of the meringue discs together with strawberry jam before dunking the side of the sandwich into the chocolate ganache. Roll the chocolate coated side in coconut and place in the fridge to set for 10 minutes. Enjoy!

Note: if you find your meringues start to melt when you dip them in chocolate, place the meringues in the freezer for 5 minutes before dipping. Also place the ganache in a shallow dish to ensure it cools evenly (as in a deep bowl it may still be warm on the bottom).