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Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Healthy Chicken Caesar Salad

For Christmas I received Jamie Olivers '15 Minute Meals' cookbook. I was somewhat dubious as to whether the meals would really only take 15 minutes, however the recipes looked tasty so I was keen to try them.

The first recipe I tried was the Caesar Salad. I made it one night after having spent the day at the beach with family. Earlier in the week my Husband and I had tagged all the meals we liked to look of and we had written out a shopping list of the ingredients we needed to buy. Whilst the initial cost was expensive, many of the ingredients are used in more than one recipe.

With all the ingredients for the salad on hand I set about making the salad. I followed his instructions in getting all the ingredients out and on the bench, including setting up all the tools i would need to make the meal.

The meal was so simple to make and really did only take me 15 minutes to make.The taste. OH MY GOD! AMMAAZZZIIINNNGGG. Yes. It certainly is worth the capitals and multiple letters.

What really made this salad was the crunchy polenta coated chicken and the to die for sauce. It is not really a normal caesar salad, or a normal dressing. The dressing is creamy, garlicy and has a great basil flavour. Thankfully there was way more dressing than was needed so I used the leftover dressing on my salads for lunch the rest of the week. Yum!

Also, the chicken was so simple to make that I have made the chicken on it's own as a chicken schnitzel a few times since. The polenta gives the chicken the crunchy coating like a fried schnitzel, but without all the oil.

  • For the chicken:
  • 2, 3.5-ounce skinless chicken breast
  • 1/2 teaspoon sweet smoked paprika
  • 2 heaped tablespoons of finely ground polenta
  • Olive oil
  • For the salad:
  • Ciabatta loaf of bread
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 2 red radicchio (Iused some chicory I had for another recipe)
  • 4 slices of pancetta
  • 2 heads romaine lettuce
  • 10 cherry tomatoes
  • 2 large jarred red peppers
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • 1 bunch watercress
  • For the dressing:
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 2 lemons
  • 2 ounces parmesan cheese plus extra to serve
  • 8 anchovies
  • 4 heaped tbsp of fat free natural yogurt
  • 1 splash of Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon of red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon of english mustard
  • 1/2 bunch of fresh basil

On a large sheet of wax or parchment paper, toss the chicken with paprika, polenta and a pinch of salt and pepper. Fold over the paper, then bash and flatten the chicken to roughly 1/2-inch thick with a rolling pin.
Put into the frying pan with a tablespoon of olive oil and brown until golden and cooked through, turning after about four minutes. Cut four thick slices of ciabatta, place on a griddle pan and remove when nicely charred on both sides.
Squash the unpeeled garlic through a garlic crusher into a blender. Squeeze in the lemon juice, crumble in the Parmesan and add the rest of the dressing ingredients. Blitz until smooth then season to taste.
Rub the toasts with a halved garlic clove and cut into strips. Quarter the radicchio and add to the griddle pan with the pancetta to char for a couple of minutes.
Roughly slice the lettuces and arrange over a large serving board or platter. Scatter over the ciabatta strips half the tomatoes and slice the peppers, then add to the board. Toss a splash of balsamic with the radicchio and arrange on top.
Slice the chicken, lay it around the salad, drizzle over the dressing, crumble over the crispy pancetta and snip over the watercress. Use a speed-peeler to shave over the extra Parmesan.
Serves four

Saturday, 9 March 2013

Aussie Curves - Military

Military? What the heck?

That was my first thought when I saw military on the list. I was stumped. I tried to think of what I could wear. Cargo pants and I are not friends. They do nothing for my already wide thighs.

Military jacket? Years ago I owned the most DIVINE military style coat. It was a full length, latte colour, with a high neck and double breasted brass buttons. Sadly, I put on weight and can no longer squeeze my arms into it. My mother gleefully claimed it, and I must confess it looks better on her than it ever did on me. She loves it because during winter she can pop it on over anything she is wearing and pop into the shops and look chic and stylish.

I do however love the colour 'army green'. As a matter of fact, I refer to my eye colour as being 'army green'. It is the closest colour that matches the shade of green in my eyes.

Top - Avella by Big W
Skirt - Target
Boots - Williams
Hat - Sportsgirl
Necklace & Bracelet - Lovisa

After some thought I came up with this look. I think that is what is so exciting about Aussie curves challenges. They make you rethink fashion, and put together different looks. I always try to shop my wardrobe, and have never gone out and purchased anything other than accessories to fit in with a theme. It may help that I have a huge wardrobe, which no matter how often I downsize still seems to be bursting at the seams.

For this week's look I used my top as the starting point. I was going to pair it with skinny leg jeans, however it was a sunny day and I was going to wear the outfit while grocery shopping. I swapped the jeans for a denim skirt, popped on some boots, a military style cap and some some accessories. I actually really liked how the whole look came together and think it has a definite military feel to it.

Do you have a piece of clothing that you adored, but can no loner wear? What was it and why did you love it?

Be sure to check out what the other AC ladies are wearing this week!

Aussie Curves - Retro

Oh dear....

I have been really quite behind in updating and taking part in the Aussie Curves challenges lately. I have no real excuse other than time running away from me each week. Never mind, I have managed to get this weeks theme done by the skin of my teeth!

I found this dress during the New Year sales and knew that it would be perfect for retro week!

The cut of the dress is beautiful. The tie up bust is really flattering for my small chase size. The length is also perfect. I love the cherry pattern as well.

My only problem with the dress is the back. It was a lovely cut out back, however I am a little short-waisted and so the stretch panel at the back does not sit right. It sort of folds out a bit.

I am not too worried though, as I love everything else about this dress.

Dress - City Chic
Shoes - Rivers
Bangle - Secondhand
Earrings - Handmade

I put this outfit on and headed out for lunch with some friends when tragedy struck! My shoes broke! The stitching on one of the buckles popped off, making hte shoes completely unwearable. My Husband was sent off to find me a pair of shoes as I could not walk in them. There was a multipurpose discount shop nearby so he dashed in there and picked up a pair of sandals. They were not really he kind of shoe I would normally wear, but they were only $3 and definitely better than walking shoe less!

So tell me, have you been out and had a wardrobe malfunction? Were you able to find a solution?