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Winter Warmers For Colder Nights – Part 1

The nights are getting colder, the skies are getting darker and the temptation to reach for the takeaway menu is higher than ever. We know that when it’s cold and dark outside it can be easy to ditch the healthy option and go for something a little more comforting. There are plenty of easy-to-cook comforting meals that go easy on the waistline.

Take a look at our top 3 favourite healthy and hearty winter warmers for colder nights.

  1. Prosciutto, kale & Butter Bean Stew
    Taking just 25 minutes to make this low calorie, low-fat dinner will warm you up and keep your tummy happy!

    prosciutto-kale-butter-bean-stewIngredients
  • 80g pack prosciutto, torn into piece
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 fennel bulb, sliced
  • 2 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes
  • 4 thyme sprigs
  • 150ml white wine or chicken stock
  • 2 x 400g cans butter beans
  • 400g can cherry tomatoes
  • 200g bag sliced kale

Method

Fry the prosciutto in a dry saucepan over a high heat until crisp, then remove half with a slotted spoon and set aside. Turn the heat down to low, pour in the oil and tip in the fennel with a pinch of salt. Cook for 5 mins until softened, then throw in the garlic, chilli flakes and thyme and cook for a further 2 mins, then pour in the wine or stock and bring to a simmer.

Tip both cans of butter beans into the stew, along with their liquid, then add the tomatoes, season well and bring everything to a simmer. Cook, undisturbed, for 5 mins, then stir through the kale. Once wilted, ladle the stew into bowls, removing the thyme sprigs and topping each portion with the remaining prosciutto.

 

2. Winter Vegetable & Lentil Soup
Treat yourself to this healthy soup, packed with immunity-boosting qualities.

winter-soup

Ingredients

  • 85g dried red lentils
  • 2 carrots, quartered lengthways then diced
  • 3 sticks celery, sliced
  • 2 small leeks, sliced
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 3 large garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tbsp vegetable bouillon powder
  • 1 heaped tsp ground coriander

Method

Tip 85g dried red lentils, 2 quartered and diced carrots, 3 sliced celery sticks and 2 sliced leeks into a large pan with 2 tbsp tomato purée, 1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves, 3 chopped garlic cloves, 1 tbsp vegetable bouillon powder and 1 heaped tsp ground coriander.

Pour over 1½ litres boiling water from the kettle, then stir well. Cover and leave to simmer for 30 mins until the vegetables and lentils are tender.
Ladle into bowls and eat straight away, or if you like a really thick texture, blitz a third of the soup with a hand blender or in a food processor.

 

3. Moroccan Roast Lamb with Roasted Roots & Coriander
A tasty Moroccan roast lamb dish for a low-calorie meal packed with flavour!

         moroccan-roast-lamb-with-roasted-roots-coriander

Ingredients

  • ½ leg of lamb, around 800g
  • 2 red onions, cut into wedges
  • 1 butternut squash, skin left on, cut into wedges
  • 1 celeriac, peeled and cut into wedges
  • 2½ tbsp cold pressed rapeseed oil
  • 2 tbsp ras el hanout
  • 8 garlic cloves, skin on
  • 1 small bunch coriander
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 1⁄2 green chilli, deseeded

Method

Take the lamb out of the fridge while you chop the onions, squash and celeriac. Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Trim any excess fat off the leg of lamb, then cut a few slashes into the meat.

Rub ½ tbsp oil and 1 tbsp ras el hanout over the lamb and season with salt and pepper. Put the onion, celeriac, butternut squash into a large roasting tin with the garlic. Toss with the remaining ras el hanout, remaining oil and some salt and pepper. Nestle the lamb into the tin and put in the oven to roast for 40 mins.

Take the lamb out of the oven and leave to rest. Put the veg back in the oven for 20 mins. Meanwhile, blitz the coriander, cumin seeds, lemon zest, lemon juice and green chilli together in a mini food processor until finely chopped and vivid green.

Carve the lamb, put on a platter, then pile on the veg. Sprinkle over some of the coriander mixture before taking the platter to the table for everyone to help themselves.

Let us know what you think of these winter warming, vitamin-packed meals. If you have any favourite recipes we would love to hear them. Comment below. In part 2 we bring you even more delicious, healthy and comforting meals.

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