Category Archives: Lunchbox

Sweet Potato and Spinach Bake

IMG_3995I followed this recipe word for word from the BBCgoodfood website. For once I did not change a thing :) Whilst sweet potatoes are more nutritious than regular potatoes, I would not classify this recipe as low in carbohydrates or calories.

The sweet potato is low in Sodium, and very low in saturated fat and cholesterol. It is also a good source of dietary fiber, Vitamin B6 and Potassium, and a very good source of Vitamin A, Vitamin C and Manganese. However, it has a relatively high sugar content. Have a look.

As I said in my introduction, I followed the recipe to the letter, but found that it needed a longer cooking time as some of the sweet potato slices weren’t cooked through. Do check it after 45-50 minutes by inserting a knife into the centre to check how done the sweet potato is, but you may need to cook it for up to 65-70 minutes in all.

I also cooked the spinach separately as pouring hot water over it does not suffice to defrost it properly (the fact jumped out at me when I read the recipe since I use frozen spinach very often) and used about 350g instead of 250g. It made for a lovely thick layer of spinach and it could have done with more too.

It is best to let the dish sit for a while after removing from the oven; the result was slightly watery but this improved with time and it was even better the next day after re-heating!

It is possible to refrigerate this dish (after cooling at room temperature) and enjoying over 2-3 days after re-heating.

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Spiced Lentils with Baked Egg

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Inspired by this recipe, meal times for beginners could hardly be easier. Just a few ingredients for a wholesome and tasty meal. You couldn’t ask for much more. If you’re in Malta, the taste is very similar to that of the filling in our pea cakes (pastizzi tal-pizelli) – what are you waiting for? Another link here, because I couldn’t resist this lovely post.

Back to our lentils – perhaps Summer isn’t the best time for this, but believe me it’s worth the heat from your oven if you can face it. If you need a better reason (other than the tasty result of this recipe) read about how good they are for you. The slow energy release will keep you full and happy for hours too.

You will need (to make about 4 portions):

6 spring onions, finely chopped

2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped

500g orange lentils, I used the dried variety (no need to pre-soak)

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 teaspoons Garam Masala

4 eggs

1 litre vegetable stock

To make:

Rinse the lentils under running water in a colander.

Heat up the oil and fry the spring onions and garlic until tender. Add the lentils and Garam Masala and stir to blend. Add the stock. Let it come to the boil and cook for about 20-25 minutes until tender, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking to the bottom of the pan. If need be, add more hot water a little at a time so that the lentil mixture doesn’t dry up too much.

You should have the consistency of a paste by the time the lentils have cooked sufficiently.

In the mean time heat your oven to about 180 C.

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Divide the mixture into 4 individual-portion ramekins and dig a small hollow in the middle of each, then crack an egg carefully into it, trying to keep the yolk intact. Garnish with salt and pepper.

If you would like to keep some leftover lentil mixture for another time, let it cool to room temperature then store in the fridge (for use over the next few days) or freezer (to use within 3 months). All this before adding the egg of course.

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Cook for about 15-20 minutes until the egg sets to your liking.

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