Spiralized…. spagetti bolognese

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Spagetti bolognese or Spagetti Med Köttfärssås is such a standard dinner in so many households across the world.  I don’t tend to eat gluten free pasta myself but I sometimes gives the kids Spelt Dinkel) pasta as a slightly better alternative.  Today I used my new Spiralizer that makes pasta likes spirals out of vegetables.  This time I used Courgette/Zucchini and post spiralizing I poured boiling water over them and let it sit for a 2 minutes before serving.  If you don’t have a spiralizer you can soon order one here!

Otherwise for my version of bolognese I tend to be very un Italian, but it is a great way to get vegetables into kids!

Bolognese

  • 500 grams of minced beef
  • 2 tbsp rapeseed oil
  • 1 onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • half a courgette
  • a large carrot
  • 3 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1 tin of tomatoes
  • 1/2dl of red wine if you have some open… we tend to…
  • 1 tsp boullion powder
  • salt and pepper (about 1/2 tsp each)
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • Optional – chopped capers or chopped black olives… I do this finely and the kids don’t know and love it!
  1. head the oil and while it does
  2. chop all the vegetables – finely if you have picky kids
  3. cook all the vegetables until the onion is see through
  4. add the mince and born this
  5. add the rest of the ingredients
  6. stir once in a while whilst it is bubbling away for minimum 20 min but much more if you have the time. A hour or 4 later it would be even more tasty albeit keen an eye on the liquid levels.
  7. Serve with spiralized vegetables, on top of an avocado or some broccoli – raw carrots tend to work with the kids!

Mini Meal Planner with Minced meat

I think it is important to realize that everyone is not as cooking crazy as myself hence not willing or able to spendIMG_0718 as much time cooking as I do. For me it is more than a hobby hence I can justify more time!  I think it is really good to make one thing and then spread it over a few days in different formats. As there is nothing more boring than eating the same thing for days on end – it is the sure way to overindulging in something completely different. You can of course also freeze these cooked to split up the minced meat frenzy and/or have a sallad dinner one night in between!

I actually thought I may have curbed my Finn Crisp addiction (I eat them with butter and some salt.. I try and stop at 4, I think I just had 10!) but no… always harder to eat well again after a day of not doing so.  But what I have realized is that now at least my bad is rye crackers with butter, not a 250 gram of milk chocolate! Also I don’t feel as guilty – guilt is such an overused emotion with such ridiculous things! I will have to get better!

So 500 grams of mince… what can you do with it? My basis for three days on 500 grams of mince for 2 adults and 2 children is a bolognese sauce with a lot of vegetables.

1. Bolognese sauce with extra vegetables MEAL 1

Heat 2 tbsp of rapeseed oil and cook on low heat any or as many of the below vegetables you like (and your kids like and you have at home):

Onion

Garlic

Pepper

Carrots

Courgette/Zucchini

Mushrooms

Cabbage… etc take what you have!

Chop them all finely – even grate some if you think the kids will not like the bits. If they are really picky even blitz all the vegetables with the tins of tomatoes and then remove from pan and brown the mince. They won’t even know. My kids eat capers all the time this way!

When the onion is translucent (see through) add:

4tbsp of tomato puree

500 grams of mince and brown thisIMG_0560

When browned add:

2 tins of tomatoes

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pepper

1 tsp dried oregano (optional)

1/2 tsp cinnamon

Cook it all through until you have a vegetable stuffed mince (rough bolognese sauce)

(you could also add a tin of chickpeas, kidney beans or other beans in the end)

Now take out about 1/3 for eating as is on top of some cooked broccoli, an avocado or some spiralized vegetables and eat like a bolognese sauce! Cool the rest for other days or freeze it!

2. Lasagna (oven on at 200 degrees C) MEAL 2IMG_0716

Take another third of mince and layer this with ribbons of zucchini (courgette).

The white sauce I made from:

25 grams butter (melt and then add the psyllium husk and po fiber to thicken)

1 tbsp psyllium husk (fiberhusk)

1 tbsp po fibre

2.5 dl milk or dairy free alternative

salt and pepper

100 grams grated cheese as usual I use cheddar. Half in white sauce half on top! The sauce is not a very nice consistency … but I promise it tastes nice. I am not crazy on white sauce in standard lasagna, hence I don’t use a lot of it here.

Then cook in the oven for 25-30 min until golden and bubbling.  Eat as is or with a green salad.

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3. Cowboy Soup MEAL 3

Cowboy soup is something the kids get at school and when I made it the first time I was impressed by how easy it was and how tasty!! They highlighted it didn’t taste as good as schools however…

Fry another onion in 2 tbsp of oil and add:

1 tbsp cumin (spiskummin)

2 tsp paprika powder

Warm spices through then add last third of bolognese mixture. Add:

1 tin of tomatoes

2-3 tins of water (start with 2)

1 tsp of bullion powder

1 tbsp dried basil

1 tbsp Dijon mustard

salt and pepper and

tin of beans – cannellini beans are nice

Add some spinach at the end to just wilt into the soup if you have it in the cupboard!

Serve as a chunky soup!

This is a very easy way to use less meat and cook simply and to make cooking during the week quick!  Good luck.

Cauliflower and Mince Bake… no shepherds or cottages were harmed in the making of this!

I think the very traditional British ‘pies’ with mashed potato on top ate very satisfying and sometime you need that.  So what to substitute mash for. I made this very easy and basic version with cauliflower mash on top and it was delicious. I have to try it next as topping for a fishy equivalent as I absolutely love fish pie. My problem used to be that I always felt so full i thought i may vomit afterwards!

Cauliflower and Mince Bake

(P.S. there is a reason that I am not calling this a cottage or shepherds pie substitute as albeit it could be categorised in the same family is the fact that when people say ‘this gluten free pizza is as good as standard gluten/wheat based pizza’ I think you are set up for failure. You may have thought it was delicious if you didn’t compare!!

P.P.S. another interesting (well to me) thought is that fact that wouldn’t life be so much easier if we stopped comparing things. We worry about our kids and peer pressure but even as an adult you look at your neighbours,peers and people in the street. Albeit you may not say like a 6 year old ‘I want that’ you or I certainly from time to time think it.  Why do I waste energy on wanting things and believing the grass is always greener somewhere else. It is just my head being a bitch!  I don’t think I am overly materialistic but I think todays society seeds WANT.  I will try and want less… I watched http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1626146/ (Hectors Search for Happiness) maybe not the best movie I have ever watched, but easy fun and a good topic.  Maybe I will start what my grandfather did with his family every morning – laughing atIMG_0440 the breakfast table for 2 minutes, great medicine!

Anyway… here goes

Cauliflower and Mince Bake (finally) Serves 6

Oven on 200 degrees Celsius – 40 minutes (including prep time)

I actually made a little one for the kids as we are going out tomorrow then their dinner is sorted!

One medium cauliflower – chopped upp and steamed until soft (about 10 min depending on the size you chop the cauliflower into)

one onion chopped

2 cloves of garlic

one onion

half a courgette/zucchini

Chop all finely and cook until transparent – add mince and brown, add plenty of salt and pepper (tsp of each) and some dried herbs (1tbs – oregano or herbs de Provence)

Place in oven proofed dish when cooked through

Whizz steamed (or boiled) cauliflower with 25 grams of butter, 1 tbs of olive oil and plenty of salt and pepper.  Put the mixture on top of the mince mixture.

Grate plenty of strong cheese on top – I tend to use mature cheddar (100 grams)

Place in oven until bubbling and golden around 20-25 minutes!

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Taco Deluxe – Slow cooked beef

To make my slow cooked beef for my deluxe taco’s I use one portion of the Taco seasoning and add:

collage taco

one small onion – chopped

2 garlic cloves  (in addition to the one in the seasoning) – chopped

2 tbs of oil for frying

Cook all the seasoning and the above for a few minutes and them brown the beef.

1 kg of Chuck Steak (Högrev)

Then add:

One small chopped chilli

1 tin of tomatoes

1/2 dl of red wine

Place in the oven in a pot with a lid for a minimum of 6 hours at 100 degrees C – but another 2 hours is no problem.  I would either do it over night and just reheat it when you are eating it or if you can all day!

Serve with your usual Taco condiments.  I always have Salsa, Guacamole, Turkish Yogurt/Sour Cream and grated cheese (I love cheddar). This time I also made a coleslaw which I can add recipe for later.

I would say I loved the food but when our guests arrived the red wine started to flow hence I chatted and laughed way to much!  A great Friday evening dinner – quick to prepare (say around 15 min) and very tasty – I had the leftovers with half an avocado and some scrambled eggs. Delicious!!

The rest of the weekend we ave pottered in the garden, drunk coffee had Saturday sweets (in Sweden this is a very common tradition and one we have not let go despite eating very healthily at other times). Mr M. and I don’t tend to have any… albeit last night the kids had not finished theirs hence I went to bed sugared up feeling way to full! Sunday morning football for eldest and run for me! Ready for the week ahead!

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