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Previously I posted about how I planned to get back into my cooking, using Jamie Oliver’s 15-minute meals as a catalyst.

Chicken Stroganoff

Chicken Stroganoff, fluffy (brown) rice, red onion & parsley pickle

So far I have made 2 dishes from the book.  The first I will portray below.  The second (shown above) was my version of Beef stroganoff fluffy rice, red onion & parsley pickle.  I made a few changes- from Beef to Chicken; left out the thyme and the spinach; and used quick cups brown rice (40 sec in the microwave – sized for 1 – perfect!)

The first dish I made was my take on his Lamb Kofte, Pitta and Greek Salad. (page 108).   The main changes I made were to the Kofte’s- I used chicken with Italian style spices.  I was going to add spring onion but forgot it (but would use it next time).  I didn’t ‘time’ my recipe as I was just pottering around the kitchen.

The Couscous

The Couscous

The Salad

The Salad

The original ingredients will be in brackets.

Chicken Kofte Pitta's with Greek Salad

Chicken Kofte Pitta’s with Greek Salad

Chicken (Lamb) Kofte, Pitta and Greek Salad
-adapted from Jamie Oliver’s 15 – min meals
              -serves 4  (note- I halved all ingredients)

Ingredients out ~ Kettle Boiled ~ Large frying pan (high heat) ~ Food Processor (bowl blade)

400g chicken (lean lamb) mince
(1 tsp garam masala if using lamb)
if using chicken:
1 tsp Italian herbs (or sprinkle of each dried garlic, oregano, thyme, basil- which is what I had on hand)
couple spring onions finely chopped
olive oil
25g shelled pistachios
a few sprigs of fresh thyme
1 tbsp runny honey

1/2 bunch of fresh mint
1 fresh red chilli
1/2 a mug (150g) of couscous

1/2 an iceberg lettuce (I used cos)
1/2 a red onion
1/2 a cucumber
5 ripe cherry tomatoes
4 black olives (stone in)
4 heaped tbsp fat-free natural yoghurt
2 lemons
40g feta cheese

To Serve
4 pita breads

Start The Clock Cooking
In a large bowl mix the mince with salt, pepper, and the (garam masala) Italian herbs and spring onion.  Divide into 8 (or more if you want smaller kofte’s; I got 5 from about 250g of chicken mince) and with wet hands shape into little fat fingers.  Put into the frying pan with 1 tbsp of oil, turning until dark golden all over.

Tear off most of the top leafy half of the mint and blitz in the processor with a pinch of salt and pepper and the chilli until fine.  (Remove the blade, stir in 1/2 a mug of couscous and 1 mug of boiling water, put the lid on and leave to sit in the processor.  (I just cooked my couscous normally and then added chopped up mint!)

Cut the lettuce into wedges and arrange on a nice board or platter.  Peel and coarsely grate the cucumber into a bowl, season well with salt, then squeeze out any excess salty liquid and sprinkle over the lettuce.  (This is a really good way of using onion in a salad without it overpowering the salad).  Chop and add the tomatoes, then squash, destone and dot over the olives.  Mix the yoghurt in a bowl with the juice of 1 lemon, season to taste, then drizzle it over the lettuce and crumble over the feta.

Bash the pistachios in a pestle and mortar (or if you don’t have one do what i did, put them in a clean tea towel and bash them with a rolling pin till crushed).  Drain away the fat from the lamb, then toss with the bashed nuts, thyme leaves and honey, and turn the heat off.  Pop the pittas in the microwave (800W) for 45 seconds to warm through, then cut in half and add to the board with the kofte.  Fluff up the couscous, scatter the remaining mint leaves over everything and serve with lemon wedges.

Will I make this again?- Definitely! 

Chicken Kofte Pitta's with Greek Salad

Chicken Kofte Pitta’s with Greek Salad

ps: This post is for the Week 4 topic ‘bedtime’ for @52blogs.