Home' Advocate Communications : Fiordland Advocate 20 March 2009 Contents Page 8 | 20 March, 2009
Budget meals need not be boring
meals. Quite the opposite in fact. Many
enticing ethnic dishes are prepared from
cheaper meats and include low-cost
spices, protein-packed lentils or beans
and seasonal vegetables.
The current trend of ‘growing your own’
means you can vary the vegetables in a
recipe without a trip to the supermarket.
Herbs are truly cheap and easy to grow
and the surplus can often be dried or
frozen for future use.
Cheaper cuts of meat often have loads
more flavour than the more expensive
ones so try gravy or shin beef for stewing
rather than topside. However, cheaper
cuts do require longer, low-heat cooking.
Therefore it’s best to cook double the
amount required, reserving one half for
another meal. And if you’re using the oven,
ensure there are several dishes or foods
that can be cooked at the same time. For
example, baked potatoes or kumara or a
casserole of mixed vegetables. Of course
a dessert can be cooked as well.
Cooking in a frying pan, electric frypan
or microwave can help reduce fuel costs
that may offset the use of more expensive
Carbohydrate foods such as rice, pasta,
grains, potatoes and pumpkin are on the
‘eat more’ list recommended by major
nutrition groups. Fortunately most of these
are relatively inexpensive and can form
the base of many meals.
Indian Style Meatballs with Lentils
500g minced lamb or beef
2 tablespoons curry powder
2 teaspoons grated root ginger
2 tablespoons olive oil
1⁄2 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 cup basmati rice
3-31⁄2 cups vegetable or chicken stock
400g can brown lentils, rinsed and drained
2 cloves garlic, crushed
420g can tomato pasta sauce
Combine the mince, 1 tablespoon of the curry powder and
1 teaspoon of the root ginger. Take tablespoonfuls of the
mixture and roll into balls.
Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large non-stick frying
pan. Sauté the balls for about 4 minutes or until browned.
Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate.
Heat the remaining oil. Add the cumin seeds and cook for
1 for minute. Stir in the rice. Add 2 cups of the stock and
bring to the boil. Cover and cook on low heat until the liquid
is absorbed by the rice. Add more stock if necessary and
cook until the rice is tender. Stir in the lentils.
Add in the garlic and remaining curry powder and root
ginger to the pan.
Stir well then add the tomato pasta sauce, any remaining
stock and the meatballs. Cover and simmer for about 5
minutes to heat through.
Excellent served topped with yoghurt and accompanied by
steamed vegetables. Serves 5-6.
Lamb Pita Sandwich
400g lean minced lamb
2 tablespoons yoghurt
1⁄2 teaspoon each: ground cinnamon, paprika
pinch each: salt, cayenne pepper
1 onion, sliced
2 tomatoes, sliced
1⁄4 cup chopped mint
freshly ground black pepper to taste
4 small pita breads
Combine the mince with the yoghurt and spices. Form into
4 patties. Cook under a hot grill or over the barbecue for
about 4 minutes each side. Do not overcook. Meanwhile,
combine the onion, tomatoes, mint and pepper. Warm
the pita breads briefly in the microwave. Spoon the onion
mixture into the halved pita pockets and top with the lamb
patties. Serves 4.
1.25kg trimmed stewing beef
1⁄4 cup flour
1-2 tablespoons smoked or plain paprika
salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 packet dry onion soup mix
11⁄2 cups water
2 onions, sliced
1 tbspn each: caraway seeds, chopped parsley, vinegar
1 teaspoon mixed dried herbs
Preheat the oven to 160°C.
Cube the beef. Combine the flour, paprika and seasonings
in a bowl. Toss the meat in this until well coated. Heat
the oil in a large casserole suitable for the hob and oven.
Sauté the meat in batches, until browned.
Combine the soup mix with the water and add to the
casserole with the onions and seasonings. Cover and
cook for 2 hours, until tender. Delightful served with
baked potatoes and casseroled mixed vegetables.
350g chicken livers
2 tablespoons finely grated
3 large cloves garlic, finely
1⁄2 teaspoon each: ground
1 tspn ground coriander
2 tablespoons each: lemon
juice, sweet chilli sauce
4 medium potatoes,
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 tablespoons each:
chopped coriander or
Drain the chicken livers and pat dry.
Slice into strips. Combine the root ginger,
garlic, turmeric, cumin and coriander,
lemon juice and chilli sauce in a bowl.
Add the chicken livers and stir well to
Prick the skins of each potato a couple
of times. Place on a paper towel in a
microwave oven. Cook on high (100%)
power for about 3 minutes per potato,
that is, about 12 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat the oil in a non-stick
frying pan. Add the chicken livers and
cook for about 2-3 minutes each side.
They should be browned on the outside
but still a little pink inside. Toss in the
fresh herbs. Add more lemon juice, if
Slice open the baked potatoes and fill
with the chicken liver mixture. Great
served with a salad or steamed greens.
Spicy Chicken Liver Baked Potatoes
Thrifty Tasty Treats
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