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South American Style Brunch February 2, 2015

I recently started following Jamie Oliver on Instagram. Okay, I’ll admit it, I have a crush on him. I just love his food. It’s just rustic, with lovely accessible ingredients. I often buy cookbooks because the recipes look fantastic but I never end up making them because the ingredients are too hard to find or the recipes are too complex and I couldn’t be bothered. I’m all about hassle free cooking and I think Jamie is the master. Anyway, Jamie posted this recipe on Instagram recently and I loved the sound of it, so decided to give it a shot during the week. The original recipe uses Quinoa but I didn’t have any in stock, I substituted it for long grain rice and it worked out quite well. I will be saving this to my favourites for sure. I went a bit light on the chilli and chilli sauce, I will be a bit braver next time around.

Serves 6


200g quinoa

Sea salt

Olive oil

Pinch of cumin seeds

1 x 400g black beans or black eyed beans, drained and rinsed

1 long fresh red chilli, finely sliced

1 fresh jalapeno chilli, freshly sliced

2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

A pinch of golden caster sugar

Extra virgin olive oil

Juice of half a lime

Freshly ground black pepper

6 large free range eggs

1 ripe avocado

200g of ripe cherry tomatoes, quartered

2 spring onions, finely sliced

A small bunch of fresh mint

A small bunch of fresh coriander

Hot chilli sauce, to serve


1. Cook the quinoa according to packet instructions, with a good pinch of salt. Meanwhile, add a good glug of olive oil to a frying pan and place over a high heat. Once hot, add the cumin seeds and then fry for 30 seconds, then add the beans and a pinch of salt and continue cooking for 5-8 minutes, or until crisp all over.

2. While the beans are cooking, place the sliced chillies into a bowl with the vinegar, sugar and a pinch of salt and set aside.

3. Drain the quinoa well, then drizzle over a little extra virgin olive oil and lime juice and season lightly. Spread on a tray and leave aside to cool slightly.

4. Transfer the cooked beans to a bowl. Wipe the pan clean and return to a medium heat with a splash of olive oil. Once hot crack in your eggs and fry to your liking.

5. Transfer the quinoa to a large serving plate, layer the eggs on top and spoon over the crispy beans. Halve and de-stone the avocado, then scoop out and dot over the flesh. Scatter the tomatoes, spring onions and chillies on top, then drizzle of some of the pickling juice. Pick and roughly chop the mint and coriander leaves and sprinkle on top, then add a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and serve with plenty of hot chilli sauce.

Note: I used a mixture of Jalapenos in a jar and fresh. The version in a jar comes in a pickled sauce, so I just re-cycled this with a little sugar.

P.s. If you are a Jamie Oliver fan, I would highly recommend following him on Instagram, he posts a new recipe each day.



Chilli and Lemongrass Chicken November 14, 2014

Filed under: Chicken,Healthy Eating,Rice and Grains — delishuss @ 9:08 am
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I was looking for a quick and healthy chicken dish to cook mid-week. I had a look on the Google and came across this recipe. It’s from The chicken is really tasty but I think the rice is lacking something. I added some soy sauce which made it a little less bland. That said, it’s a lovely meal.

Serves 4


1-2 long red chillies, chopped

1 lemongrass stem (inner core only), finely chopped

3cm piece ginger, chopped

3 garlic cloves

3 tablespoons honey

1 1/2 tablespoons mirin

3 teaspoons fish sauce

2 tablespoons sunflower oil

700g chicken breast fillets, sliced

2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 cup (200g) jasmine fragrant rice

2 spring onions, thinly sliced

1/2 cup Thai basil leaves, roughly chopped

1/2 up coriander leaves, roughly chopped

200g snow peas, blanched, refreshed, thinly sliced


1. Whiz chilli, lemongrass, ginger and garlic into a paste. Add honey, mirin, fish sauce and 1 tablespoon oil and blitz until combined.

2. Toss chicken in a bowl with half the marinade. Chill for 15 minutes. Combine soy with remaining marinade. Set aside.


3. Meanwhile, cook the rice according to packet instructions. Keep warm.

4. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a wok or large pan over medium-heat. Add half the chicken and cook, turning, for 5-8 minutes until browned and sticky. Repeat with remaining 1 teaspoon oil and chicken. Keep warm.


5. Meanwhile, toss spring onion, basil, coriander and snow peas with the rice.

6. Spoon rice into serving bowls and serve topped with chicken and reserved saue.


Jambalaya July 3, 2013

Filed under: Fish,Meat,Rice and Grains — delishuss @ 10:34 am
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I picked myself up a slow cooker. I was surprised at how popular they are here in Australia considering how warm a place it is. It’s more the convenience of it I think; you bung the food in the cooker, leave it for the day and hey presto a lovely cooked dinner waiting for you when you get home. I wasn’t really sure what the process was so I bought myself a cookbook to try out a few ideas from it (Simple & Delicious Slow Cooker)

One of the first recipes I tried out was this Jambalaya. I will be straight with you, I thought the flavour would be a bit punchier. Maybe a bay leaf or bouquet garni might work to give it a bit more flavour. Here you go.

Serves 6


1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

2 tsp chopped fresh thyme

350g/12 oz skinless, boneless chicken breast, diced

2 tbsp corn oil

2 onions, chopped

2 green peppers, deseeded and chopped

2 celery sticks, chopped

115g/4oz chorizo sausage, sliced

400g/12oz canned chopped tomatoes

2 tbsp tomato puree

225ml/8floz chicken stock

450g/1lb raw prawns, peeled and deveined

450g/ 1lb cooked rice

Salt and pepper

Snipped fresh chives, to garnish



1. Mix together the cayenne pepper, 1/2 teaspoon of pepper, 1 teaspoon of salt and the thyme in a bowl. Add the chicken and toss to coat.

2. Heat the oil in a large heavy-based saucepan. Add the onions, garlic, green peppers and celery and cook over a low heat, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Add the chicken and cook over a medium heat, stirring frequently, for a further 5 minutes until golden all over. Stir the ham, chorizo, tomatoes, tomato puree and stock and bring to boil.

3. Transfer the mixture to the slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 6 hours. Add the prawns and rice, re-cover and cook on high for 30 minutes.

4. Taste and adjust the seasoning, adding salt and pepper if needed. Transfer to warmed plates, garnish with chives and serve immediately.


Sweet and Sour Chicken February 8, 2012

I was going through an oldish Weight Watchers magazine to see if there was anything nice to cook and I realised that I never posted this recipe. This is yummy, it’s not that gloopy texture that you can get in the Chinese take-away. Don’t get me wrong, I like Chinese but I think it often leaves you feeling bloated and stodgy. This is nice and light, might be a good one for a Friday night.

36 propoints per recipe

9 propoints per serving

Serves 4

15 minutes prep, 15 minutes cooking time



230g can pineapple chunks or rings in natural juice

100ml chicken stock

1 tbsp soy sauce

1 tbsp rice or white wine vinegar

2 tsp tomato puree

1 tsp clear honey

2 tsp cornflour

200g long grain rice

Calorie controlled cooking spray

500g skinless boneless chicken breast, chopped

1 onion, sliced

1 large carrot, sliced thinly

1 courgette, chopped

1 red pepper, de-seeded and chopped

1 yellow pepper, de-seeded and chopped

2 tomatoes, chopped

Fresh coriander leaves, to garnish



1. Drain the juice from the pineapple into a jug and add the chicken stock, soy sauce, vinegar, tomato puree, honey and cornflour. Stir to blend, then set aside. Chop the pineapples into pieces if you’ve bought rings.

2. Cook the rice according to the pack instructions.

3. Meanwhile, mist a wok or large frying pan with cooking spray. Add the chicken and stir fry over a high heat for 3-4 minutes, until browned.

4. Add the onion, carrot, courgette and peppers to the chicken and continue to stir fry for 3-4 more minutes.

5. Stir sauce and add it to the chicken and vegetables, along with the pineapple and tomatoes. Stir until thickened, then turn the heat to low and cook for 4-5 minutes. Serve with the rice, garnished with coriander, if you like.



Indonesian stir-fried rice (Nasi goreng) January 18, 2012

Filed under: Curries,Rice and Grains — delishuss @ 10:38 pm
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I saw this recipe on Saturday Kitchen. It’s one from Rick Steins. It’s very unusual but I like it a lot. Okay before you go any further I will say that this recipe is quite complicated, not from a skills point of view but just the number of ingredients in it. That’s another thing, there are a lot of ingredients in the recipe that I’m not sure would be in everybody’s food cupboard. With all that said, it’s a really nice take on a rice stir fry. If you try it let me know how you get on.

Serves 4


For the Balinese spice paste (Base gede)

  • ¾ tsp black peppercorns
  • ¼ nutmeg, freshly grated
  • 15g/½oz candle nuts, macadamia nuts, cashew nuts or roasted peanuts
  • ½ tsp sesame seeds
  • 30g/1oz shallots, peeled, roughly chopped
  • 15g/½oz fresh root ginger, peeled, roughly chopped
  • 20g/¾oz galangal (or extra ginger), peeled, roughly chopped
  • 7g fresh turmeric, peeled, or ½ tsp ground turmeric
  • 1½ fat lemongrass stalks, hard outer leaves removed, core chopped
  • 10g/¼oz garlic
  • 1 medium-hot red chilli, seeds removed, roughly chopped
  • 2 red bird’s-eye chillies, roughly chopped
  • ½ tsp shrimp paste
  • 1½ tsp palm sugar
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1½ tbsp vegetable oil
  • ¼ lime, juice only

For the Indonesian stir-fried rice

  • vegetable oil, for shallow frying
  • 375g/13¼oz shallots, peeled, thinly sliced
  • salt, to taste
  • 300g/10½oz long grain rice
  • 520ml/18¾fl oz water
  • 100g/3½oz fine green beans, trimmed, cut into 2.5cm/1in pieces
  • 20g/¾oz garlic, peeled, finely chopped
  • 2 medium-hot red chillies, seeds removed, finely chopped
  • 1 red bird’s-eye chilli, thinly sliced
  • 1 medium carrot, peeled, thinly sliced
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 tbsp ketjap manis
  • 250g/9oz cold, cooked leftover turkey, cut into small pieces
  • 1 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 8 spring onions, trimmed, thinly sliced

To serve

  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 4 large free-range eggs
  • ¼ cucumber, sliced
  • 2 medium-sized tomatoes, sliced
  • ready-made prawn crackers
  • spiced pickles

Preparation method

  1. For the Balinese spice paste, grind the peppercorns, nutmeg, nuts and sesame seeds to a fine powder in a spice grinder. Transfer the mixture to a food processor, then add the remaining Balinese spice paste ingredients and blend to a very smooth paste.
  2. For the Indonesian stir-fried rice, heat enough vegetable oil to reach 1cm/½in up the sides of a large frying pan over a medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, add 175g/6¼oz of the sliced shallots and fry, stirring regularly, until the shallots are crisp and golden-brown. Remove from the pan using a slotted spoon and set aside to drain on kitchen paper. Sprinkle with a little salt, then set aside to cool. When cool, keep in an air-tight container.
  3. Pour the rice into a heavy-based, lidded saucepan 20cm/8in in diameter. Add the water and bring it quickly to the boil. Stir once, then cover the pan with a tight-fitting lid and reduce the heat to low, until the water is barely simmering. Simmer for 10 minutes, then remove the lid and fluff the grains of rice with a fork.
  4. Spread the steamed rice onto a baking tray. Set aside to cool (but do not refrigerate).
  5. Cook the beans in a pan of boiling, salted water for 2-3 minutes, or until just tender. Drain well, then refresh under cold water and set aside.
  6. Heat two tablespoons of vegetable oil in a wok (or large, deep frying pan) over a high heat, until just smoking. Add the remaining sliced shallots, the garlic, chillies and carrot and stir-fry for 2-3 minutes, or until the carrot is just tender.
  7. Stir in the Balinese spice paste and stir-fry for a further minute, then add the tomato purée and ketjap manis and stir-fry for 20-30 seconds.
  8. Add the cold turkey, cooked rice and blanched green beans and stir-fry over a high heat for 2-3 minutes, or until heated through. Add the soy sauce and spring onions and stir until well combined, then remove the pan from the heat. Set aside and keep warm.
  9. Just before serving, heat the oil in a large frying pan, crack in the eggs, one at a time, and fry for 1-2 minutes, or until cooked to your liking, spooning the hot oil over the yolks as they cook.
  10. To serve, spoon the Indonesian stir-fried rice into the centre of four warm serving plates. Sprinkle over the crisp fried shallots. Top each serving with a fried egg. Serve with baskets of prawn crackers and a plate of spiced pickles.



Salsa Chicken with Beans and Rice October 1, 2011

Filed under: Chicken,Rice and Grains,Weight Watchers Recipes — delishuss @ 6:43 pm
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I got this recipe from the Weight Watchers ‘One Pot Meals’ cookbook. It’s dead easy to make. I suppose it’s quite high in points but it is a good filling meal so you wouldn’t be eating for a while afterwards and it would probably stop you from snacking so it’s worth it.

14 propoints


300g jar salsa

200ml chicken stock

300g butternut squash peeled, de-seeded and cut into chunks

1 red pepper, de-seeded and cut into chunks

75g dried basmati rice

15g chopped fresh coriander

300g skinless bonesless chicken beast, cut into chunks

410g can red kidney beans in water, drained and rinsed



1. Tip half of the jar of salsa into a lidded pan then pour in the stock. Add the squash and pepper, and then cover and simmer for 10 minutes.

2. Add the rice, half the coriander and the chicken then cover the pan and cook gently for about 8 minutes until the rice is tender and the chicken is cooked through.

3. Stir in the beans. Cover and leave for a few minutes to settle. Serve with the remaining salsa and scatter with the rest of the coriander.



Pardina lentils with white wine, Serrano ham and pimentón August 14, 2011

Filed under: Rice and Grains — delishuss @ 6:43 pm
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I saw this recipe on Saturday’s Kitchen on BBC. They showed some footage from Rick Stein’s Spain. He does some really tasty looking dishes on that programme. I couldn’t find pimentón so I just used smoked paprika instead, not sure how different the flavour would be. I served it with some pan fried haddock and baby potatoes.

Serves 6


Preparation method

  1. Check over the lentils for any little stones, then rinse in cold water. Tip them into a saucepan, add enough cold water to cover them by 5cm/2in and bring to the boil over a high heat. Reduce the heat
  2. and leave them to simmer for about 30 minutes or until just tender but still a little al dente. Drain, reserving the cooking liquid, and set to one side.
  3. Put the olive oil, garlic, onion and carrot in a wide, shallow pan over a medium heat and cook gently for 15 minutes or until the vegetables are soft and just beginning to colour. Add the Serrano ham and fry for another 5-6 minutes.
  4. Stir in the pimentón, tomatoes and wine and simmer for 5-6 minutes or until the mixture cooks down into a thick sauce.
  5. Stir the lentils into the sauce with 150ml/5fl oz of the reserved cooking liquid, the chopped parsley, 1½ teaspoons of salt and some pepper. Simmer for a further 5-6 minutes.

Paella June 18, 2011

Filed under: Fish,Meat,Rice and Grains,Uncategorized — delishuss @ 4:44 pm

This is my version of a Paella. I’m not sure if it’s authentic but it’s really yummy. It gets my thumbs up anyway.

Serves 4


3 chicken breasts, chopped

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Olive oil

100g chorizo, sliced

1 onion, finely chopped

1 chilli, finely chopped

2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped

2 litres of hot chicken stock

2 large pinches of saffron

1 heaped teaspoon of smoked paprika

200g chopped tomatoes

Small bunch of flat leaf parsley, chopped

2 handfuls of peas, fresh or frozen

10 king prawns


  1. Heat a little olive oil in a large deep pan and fry the chicken and onion until golden brown on both sides. Add the sliced chorizo and fry for a couple of minutes. Then add the chilli and garlic and cook until soft.
  2. Add the rice, mix and cook for 3 minutes. Add the saffron and paprika and stir. Next add the chopped tomatoes.
  3. Add half the chicken stock and leave to cook on a medium heat, stirring occasionally.
  4. After 20 minutes the rice should be nearly cooked. At this point, pour in the rest of the stock along with the peas, and prawns.
  5. Place a lid on the pan and cook for 10 minutes more.
  6. Finally, serve sprinkled with chopped parsley and a wedge of lemon.

Easy Spiced Lamb May 2, 2011

Filed under: Meat,Rice and Grains,Weight Watchers Recipes — delishuss @ 4:13 pm
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I love lamb and mix that with spices and you’ve a winning combination in my mind.  This is a weight watchers recipe from the Oriental Express cookbook.

Propoints value per serving – 1o

Serves 4


200g dried brown basmati rice, rinsed

125g fine green beans, trimmed

125g small cauliflower florets

low fat cooking spray

1 onion, chopped

3 large garlic cloves, chopped

2.5cm fresh root ginger

1 large courgette, diced

350g lean diced lamb, visible fat removed

50g dried apricots, chopped into small pieces

2 tablespoons garam masala

1/2 teaspoon chilli powder

salt and freshly ground black pepper


1.  Put the rice in a lided saucepan and cover with 450ml water. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to its lowest setting, cover, and simmer for 25 minutes until the water is absorbed and the grains are tender. Set aside for 5 minutes, covered, then remove the lid and leave to cool slightly.

2. Bring about 2.5cm of water to the boil in a lidded pan. Put the green beans and cauliflower in a steamer basket and place it over the pan. Cover and cook for 5 minutes until al dente. Alternatively, bring a small amount of water to boil and cook the vegetables for 5 minutes and then drain. Refresh under cold running water and then set aside.

3. Heat a large lidded non-stick frying pan. Spray with the cooking spray and stir fry the onion over a medium heat for 4 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger and courgette and stir fry for 3 minutes. Next, add the lamb and stir fry for a further 3 minutes until browned.

4. Add the apricots and spices, stir and then ad the green beans, cauliflower, rice and 5 tablespoons of water. Stir until combined and then cover with a lid and heat through for 5 minutes. Season before serving.


Risi e bisi- Rice and peas May 1, 2011

Filed under: Meat,Rice and Grains — delishuss @ 10:55 pm
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I got this recipe out of ‘Mama’s Italian Cookbook’. It’s similiar to a risotto. Lovely and comforting food. Give it a go, you won’t be disappointed.

Serves 4


1 litre chicken stock

6 tbsp butter

3 shallots, finely chopped

115g/4 oz pancetta or rindless lean bacon, diced

225g rice

150ml dry white wine

175g petis pois, thawed if frozen

Salt and pepper

Parmesan cheese shavings to garnish


1. Pour the stock into a large saucepan and bring to the boil.

2. Reduce the heat and leave to simmer gently.

3. Melt 4 tablespoons of the butter in a large, heavy-based saucepan.

4. Add the shallots and pancetta and cook over a low heat, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes, until the shallots are soft.

5. Add the rice and cook, stirring constantly, for 2-3 minutes, until all the grains are thoroughly coated and glistening.

6. Pour in the wine and cook, stirring constantly, until it has almost completely evaporated.

7. Add a ladleful of hot stock and cook, stirring constantly, until all the stock has been absorbed.

8. Continue cooking and adding the stock, a ladleful at a time, for about 10 minutes.

9. Add the peas, then continue adding the stock, a ladleful at a time, for a further 10 minutes, or until the rice is tender and the liquid has been absorbed.

10. Stir in the remaining butter and season to taste with salt and pepper.

11. Transfer to a warmed serving dish, garnish with cheese shavings and serve immediately.