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Cover: Charlie's Chicken

09Jul 12

Hot and Zingy Chicken and Rice

Here’s a one pot Chinese chicken dish that’s fast to prepare and is full of wonderful oriental flavours. It’s a great mid-week meal which is simply yet beautifully presented; with finely sliced spring onion and plenty of coriander sprinkled over hot and zingy chicken and rice. Sometimes I substitute the ginger for fresh, finely sliced lemongrass to give this dish more of a Thai twist. It is one of our staple recipes that comes out every couple of months. We had the family over to stay this weekend, and we cooked this dish because it is so tasty, and you can prepare it quickly in the kitchen; leaving more time to catch up with loved ones that you haven’t seen for a while. It was the first time my husband’s parents made the 4 hour drive to come and stay under our roof, and a special time was had by […]

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03Jul 12

Chestnut Spaghetti with Chicken Livers

Fresh ribbons of pasta topped off with soft livers, and plenty of crunch; chestnut spaghetti with chicken livers is an unusually satisfying dish. Let’s face it; chicken livers are not everybody’s favourite; perhaps they’re one of those things, like Marmite, that you either love or hate! If you’re one of the lovers, you’ll enjoy the combination of the soft livers with the crunch of the chestnuts in this dish. If you’re still not convinced, well, what’s the harm in giving it a try? You might just enjoy it, and livers are packed with nutrients, you know. If livers really don’t float your boat, you could make this prawn and courgette tagliatelle instead. I recommend fresh pasta for this meal; or for the deeply committed pasta lover, you may want to make it yourself for the most delicate of textures and the best of tastes. Print Chestnut Spaghetti with Chicken Livers […]

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25Jun 12

Chicken and Pesto Tart

Here’s a really lovely midweek meal to put together in no time and leave cooking whilst you relax or get on with other things. Chicken and pesto are always a wonderful combination. Sometimes I make this chicken and pesto open tart with green pesto, as in this recipe – but I also like to vary it with red pesto or aubergine and olive pesto when I can find it. Another nice variation is to throw over a few walnuts or almond pieces 10 minutes from the end of the cooking time to add a little crunch. We had friends over at the weekend who are about to go abroad to their homeland to get married (exciting times), and we served up this chicken and pesto open tart and tucked into it together, accompanied by a glass of sparkling white wine – now that we are getting into the warmer season. […]

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20Jun 12

Chicken and Pineapple Skewers

Now that the summer is coming, I’m starting to think more about eating outside. Chicken and pineapple skewers can be cooked on a barbeque or in the kitchen under the grill as in this recipe. Juicy pineapple goes really well with the subtlety of chicken, and peppers are always mouth-watering when grilled or flame roasted. This side dish is great accompanied by a rice dish. Why not try this Indian-style brown rice? I use tins of pineapple chunks for my chicken and pineapple skewers so that I can add the juice to the marinade, and save on preparation time. For a nice variation to the peppers, and as a further time saver when you need it, thread whole cherry tomatoes onto the skewers instead.   Print Chicken and Pineapple Skewers Author: Charlie Locke Recipe type: Side Dish Prep time:  20 mins Cook time:  15 mins Total time:  35 mins Serves: 6-8   Ingredients […]

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01Jun 12

Lemon and Sesame Chicken Breasts

Lemon and sesame chicken breasts – a lovely recipe for the height of spring; with plenty of refreshing lemon juice in the sauce. Lemons are very rich in vitamin C, but did you know that they also contain potassium, iron and vitamin B6, amongst other nutrients? Lemons store for longer in the fridge, but if you take them out and allow them to come up to room temperature before extracting the juice, they are much easier to squeeze, and so the juice comes out more easily. Lemon has antibacterial properties because of its high acid content. The origin of this wonderful fruit is not entirely certain, but its cultivation can be traced far back to Burma, China and India; spreading from there around the warmer climes of the world. Christopher Columbus brought lemon seeds to Hispaniola during his voyages in the mid 15th century. Did you know that lemon trees […]

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26May 12

Brandied Chicken Liver Paté

Ah, good old chicken liver paté, a taste from childhood that I’ve only recently rediscovered.  It was only yesterday, in fact, when my daughter and I went over to a friend’s house to play after school.  She and her buddy drank juice, drew great big pictures on a large sheet of paper in green and yellow, and then watched a movie.  And us two mums spread brandied chicken liver paté onto warm slices of wholemeal pitta bread and sipped on a small glass of good red wine in the kitchen, all the while chatting over life, the universe and everything.  An evening very well spent in good company. You can do a lot with paté. Try this recipe for a multicultural sarnie called a banh mi, using paté as its main ingredient. There are plenty of great shop-bought patés, but it’s very rewarding making it at home too, so here’s […]

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24May 12

Chicken Risotto with Green Peas

Risottos are a filling and healthy food to prepare on a budget.  Chicken risotto with green peas is a refreshing blend of spring vegetables, chicken and lemon. (I also recommend this mushroom risotto.) Ingredients: 600g risotto rice 2 large onions, peeled and finely sliced 3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced 2-4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil A generous splash or two of Martini, or white wine 6 chicken breasts sliced into diagonal strips about 1.5cm wide, skin removed 1.5L prepared, hot chicken stock 300g peas 300g courgettes, halved then sliced into long, thin strands – or however you prefer them 2-3 tbsp crème fraiche or double cream 2 tbsp fresh coriander, roughly chopped 1 tbsp fresh parsley, roughly chopped A generous twist or two of freshly squeezed lemon juice Salt and fresh ground black pepper to season Steps: Heat the olive oil in a large heavy-bottomed pan.  Sauté the onions […]

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19May 12

Roast Chicken Legs with Home-Made Chilli Chips

Chicken and chips: a good old British classic, right?  But these are home-made chips, and you’ll eat them fresh, hot, crispy and spicy.  And that’s a real treat!  Roasting chicken always fills the house with a homely, cosy smell; and chips have to be near the top of the list of the ultimate comfort foods – go on, admit it! Roast chicken legs and home-made chilli chips is a good Sunday roast alternative to throw in to the mix of home cooking once in a while.  Children will love it, though you may want to leave out the chilli powder for them; just pop some chips in a separate bowl before adding the spice.  Sure, those chips are full of calories, but if you enjoy them occasionally and don’t get tempted to make them every other day, that’s fine isn’t it?! (Also, try these lemon and parsley chicken with chips […]

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11May 12

Chicken and Avocado Baguette with Pesto Mayonnaise

Here’s a delicious sandwich to enjoy at home or out on a picnic.  Chicken and avocado baguette with pesto mayonnaise makes for a simple lunch bursting with flavour.  Chicken is full of protein and is relatively low in fat.  If you are looking for an overall low-fat option, substitute your mayonnaise for a low-calorie version and either leave out the olive oil altogether, or use very little. Avocado is said to be one of the human super foods.  It contains many different types of nutrients, including potassium, fibre, folic acid, B-vitamins and vitamins E, C and K, amongst other things.  There are more than 80 varieties of avocado, and it is also known as the alligator pear because of the texture of the variety called Haas, which can be used to make baked avocados.  Some avocados have a really smooth skin though, like the Florida variety. It has been scientifically […]

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08May 12

Chicken Fricassee

  Chicken fricassee is a bright and colourful dish which combines the meat with a mix of vegetables which are roasted together in a stock. You can thicken the sauce into a white gravy at the end of the roasting time with cream if you wish, but here is the light version for you.  It’s a great meal for a Sunday to share with family or friends.  Enjoy it with a light and fruity red wine, or a crisp dry, herby white. (For a vegetarian version, try this lentil fricassee.) Ingredients: 4kg chicken pieces; breasts and legs, skins on, boned 6 cloves garlic whole and with skins left on 90ml extra virgin olive oil 225g shallots, with skins left on and cut into halves 300g courgettes, cut in half lengthwise and then into chunky strips 200g cauliflower, cubed 3 large carrots, peeled and sliced into medium-size rounds 900ml chicken stock […]

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