Cottage Pie with an Indian Twist

Serves x4

You will need:

700g minced (lamb or beef)

1 diced white onion

1 small red chilli – diced finely

1 sliced leek

2 diced carrots

2 diced celery sticks

2 cloves of crushed garlic

Some puréed ginger

Spinach – approx 250g (enough to top sauce)

Glug of olive oil

2 large tomatoes diced

1 tsp turmeric

1tbsp coriander

1tbsp cumin

300ml Chicken stock

1 large cauliflower head

Knob of butter

Double Cream

Grated cheese for topping

Salt & Pepper

Preheat oven to 180.

Put the carrots, onion, celery, leek, chilli and garlic in a pan with the olive oil and cook until soft.

Once the vegetables are soft, add the meat and continue cooking. Once meat has browned, then add in tomatoes, ginger and stir around.

At this point, remove all leaves and core from cauliflower, stick the cauliflower in a steamer and steam until soft. Leave to one side with lid off to allow the steam to fully evaporate.

Now add the dry spices. Stir around and cook for a further 5 minutes. It should smell great around now. Add the stock, cover and leave to gently cook and bubble away for approx an hour. The sauce should reduce and thicken in this time, remove lid and cook for a further 20 minutes.

Sounds quite excessive cooking time, but this really allows the sauce to reduce and thicken to a great consistency – no one wants a sloppy cottage pie. Place sauce in an oven proof dish.

You should now have a lovely rich sauce. Top with spinach.

Now to concentrate on cauliflower mash. Put the cauliflower in a large dish with some butter and cream, salt and pepper and mash until it is the consistency that you are looking for. Add more butter and cream if needed.

Now add this smooth mash to your sauce and top with grated cheese of your choice.

Now place the cottage pie in the top part of the oven on approx 180 for 30 minutes and then remove, leave to rest for 5 minutes and serve – enjoy

Spicy Sausage Sauce

Ideal as a pasta/zucchini noodle sauce

Serves x4

1 tsp of sweet paprika

1 tsp of dried thyme

1/2 tsp of chipotle chilli flakes (or normal chilli flakes – use a teaspoon if you like very spicy foods).

Approx x5 sausages – skin removed

1 large red onion – diced

2 cloves of garlic – finely chopped

125ml of dry white wine

1 tin of chopped tomatoes

Salt & Pepper

Olive oil

Firstly, put a glug of olive oil in a pan and then add the paprika, chilli flakes and thyme.

Cook this for approx 3-5 minutes. Now add the sausage meat by crumbling it into the pan and add the diced onion, chopped garlic and cook for a further 10 minutes until the onions and garlic are soft – breaking the sausage meat up with the back of a wooden spoon.

After 10 minutes add the wine, tinned chopped tomatoes and season – now leave to bubble away on a low heat for a further 30 to 40 minutes, the sauce should thicken and become a beautiful rich colour.

I served a low carb pasta equivalent (actually 0 carbs) called pure noodles, these were a little like linguine and actually quite good, but you can serve it however you like.

I topped the pasta sauce with a large serving of grated pecorino, but Parmesan works just as well.

Low Carb Parmesan Chicken Strips

If you love breaded chicken, then you will love these low carb chicken strips.

You will need (feeds 4)

2 beaten eggs

X4 chicken breasts cut into strips

4 slices of cooked crispy bacon

150g almond flour

150g grated Parmesan

Salt & pepper

Handful of fresh chopped herbs

Firstly, cut your chicken into strips and preheat your oven to around 200 degrees

then take your beaten eggs and put on a plate. Now take your bacon and put it in a blender and blitz for 10 seconds. Now add almond flour, Parmesan, herbs and blend for around 20 seconds – then tip this mix onto a plate.

Now dip your chicken strips firstly into the egg and then into the dry mix, coat both sides and set aside.

Take a baking tray and lightly oil. Now lay the strips in a line (not overlapping) onto the sheet. Take a little olive oil and gently sprinkle over the top of the chicken and place in a hot oven for around 20-30 minutes; halfway through, turn chicken over.


You can also shallow fry them, I used avocado oil as it cooks well at high temperatures. You can shallow fry them in the hot oil for approx 15 minutes – again turning half way through making sure they don’t burn.

Remove from oven or pan (whichever cooking method you opted for) when brown and serve with whatever low carb dip you fancy (guacamole, hot sauce to name two).

Roasted Cauliflower

You can pretty much roast most vegetables but roast cauliflower is delicious and a great alternative to your normal steamed veg.

Preheat oven to 180.

Take your cauliflower and remove all leaves and the bottom part of the core of the cauliflower.

Now quarter the cauliflower. Take each quarter and cut into a further 2/4 pieces depending on how large you want your pieces.

Place florets onto a greased baking sheet and season with salt and pepper and a little olive oil. At this stage you can pretty much add any other seasoning that you fancy. I used a little garlic salt, turmeric and paprika – but you could use any flavour combinations that compliment your meal (bay, lemon, garlic, herbs, chilli). Now roast for 10 minutes.

After 10 minutes turn the florets and place back in the oven for a further 15/20 minutes (if you want to add cheese, add it at this point).

After 20 minutes your cauliflower should be cooked – test by piercing with a fork (cauliflower should feel soft).

Served below with roast chicken.

Core – what core ?

Well that was an experience. My first core stability session of 2019, pretty much discovered that I have no core !

For those of you that don’t know me, I run: slowly, but I run. If there is “bling” aka medal involved, then I pretty much throw myself in feet first. Generally I find a race/event and then drag/bully my running buddies into entering. We then all spend the next however many weeks fretting about the upcoming event until race day. We then complete the event, feel pretty heroic and invincible, aka smug and apply for another event and so the cycle goes on.

This new year I desperately wanted to do something other than running, something along the lines of yoga ….. every class I’ve looked at is in the evening and this just doesn’t work for me; has to be a morning event or I talk myself out of it. Long story short; my fabulous husband talked (bullied) me into going to a core stability session with him. It will be “fun” I think he said. We tipped up in our Lycra and tough mudder t-shirts ready to attack this core stability session.

If I’m honest, I felt a little relieved when I arrived as we were the youngest people there by far, lots of “older” women all with their own mats, and I had a silent chuckle to myself thinking well if they can do it, how hard can it be? I didn’t laugh again. These women were all pretty amazing and incredibly flexible, clearly age is just a number – go ladies.

After 40 minutes of quite (or so I thought) strenuous core exercises I was definitely feeling it. The main things I took away from this session was I definitely cannot swing one arm forward and one backward at the same time!! If I have a core, then it was most definitely hiding and not coming out to play.

However, even though there was no bling on offer, I’m definitely signing up for the next session and this time I’m dragging my core out from it’s hiding place.

Massive Meatballs filled with Cheese

12 Huge meatballs served with a cauliflower mash and rich gravy.

You will need

750g pork and beef mince

1 large onion – diced

2 sprigs of rosemary – finely chopped

Splash of Worcestershire sauce

Splash of water

Hard Cheese of your choice cut into 12 small ish cubes (I used vintage Red Leicester)

*1 slice of low carb bread – made into breadcrumbs (I blitz in a blender).

Salt & Pepper


Small diced red onion

Knob of butter

Sprig of rosemary – finely chopped

500 ml Beef stock

200 ml Red wine

2 tsp English mustard

Malt vinegar – splash

Tablespoon of arrowroot mixed with tablespoon of cold water to make a paste


Firstly add some olive oil to a pan and add the diced onion, chopped rosemary, splash of Worcestershire sauce and water. Leave to soften for about 20 minutes (medium heat).

Once the onions have softened, remove from heat to a large bowl. Now add the mincemeat, breadcrumbs and some seasoning; then using your hands mix up the meatball mixture.

Once combined make into 12 balls. Then dice your cheese into cubes.

Now make a small hole in each meatball and add the cheese, making sure that each meatball is completely sealed with the meat mixture.

Place on a tray and cover with cling film and place in the fridge until needed later.

Now to the gravy….. melt butter in a pan with small diced onion and chopped rosemary, cook until soft. Now add the stock, wine, mustard, vinegar and seasoning. Simmer for approx 30 minutes. Now add arrowroot mix and stir (or cornflour if you’re not doing low carb – same quantities).

Now take your meatballs out of the fridge and drizzle with some olive oil. Place them in a really hot oven (around 220/240) for approx 15 minutes or until a lovely golden brown. Remove from the oven and pour the gravy over the meatballs and place back in the oven for 5/10 minutes, then serve.

Serve with cauliflower mash and some seasonal greens.

*I have also blitzed up some pork scratchings if I don’t have low carb bread (one small packet).

Chicken liver pate

Love this. Chicken liver pate with cream and butter, delicious

Makes 4 little pots

400g Chicken livers

One onion, diced

Clove of garlic, chopped

200g unsalted butter

Sprig of thyme

Pinch nutmeg

2 bay leaves

50ml brandy

3/4 tablespoons of double cream

(Butter tops – 100g and some cranberry sauce)

Melt approx 50g of butter in a pan and soften the onion, add bay leaves, garlic, nutmeg and thyme and cook for a few minutes.

Add the liver and cook until cooked through, then add the brandy and cook until most of the liquid has evaporated – should be 1-2 minutes.

Take off the heat. Now remove thyme and bay leaves and put everything else in a blender, blitz until smooth.

Place the remaining butter in a pan and melt, then add this to the blender and blitz. Now add some salt and pepper and the cream and blitz again. Once everything is smooth and combined pour/spoon into ramekins.

Now to make the butter topping – melt butter in a pan and then leave to settle. Once the butter has settled remove the clear liquid and put on the top of the pate. Then spoon a little cranberry sauce in the middle and top with a little more of the melted butter – until everything is covered.

This will keep in a fridge for 3/4 days.