Delishuss Blog

Just another site

Pork, Veal & Ricotta Meatballs with Cavolo Nero August 2, 2015


This is another Weight Watchers recipe. If I were to make it again, I would make a few tweaks. It would probably increase the propoints value of the recipe but I would switch out the ricotta for feta cheese. I found the meatballs to be a little lacking in flavour. I used breadcrumbs instead of rolled oats just because I had some leftover bread. I couldn’t find Cavolo Nero in the supermarket so I use kale instead, probably a bad idea as it didn’t really wilt down very well and was a bit hard. Next time I would just add some spinach instead close to the end of the cook until wilted. I did taste pretty good in the end but it would be even better with the suggested tweaks.

12 propoints value

Serves: 4

Prep time: 10 mins

Cooking time: 20 minutes


1/4 cup (20g) trraditional rolled oats

400g pork, veal mince

4 green shallots, thinly sliced

1 small zucchini, finely grated

1/3 cup (80g) reduced fat fresh ricotta cheese, crumbled

1 tsp olive oil

1 red onion, finely chopped

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1 tbs baby salted capers, rinsed, finely chopped

2 cups (500ml) tomato pasta sauce (I used passata instead)

100g trimmed cavolo nero (Tuscan cabbage), coarsely chopped

250g spelt spaghetti

Salt and pepper to season


1. Blitz the oats in a food processor until finely chopped. Combine oats, mince, shallots, zucchini and ricotta in a bowl. Season well with salt and pepper.

2. Roll the mince mixture into balls. To prevent the balls sticking to your hand, you can spray them with some olive oil spray.

3. I cooked these in two batches to prevent them becoming soggy. Heat a frying pan and add some olive oil. Fry half of the mince balls until brown, turning frequently to coat all sides. Transfer to a plate. Do the same with the remainder of the balls. Re-add all the meatballs to the pan and reduce the heat. Add a lid and let the meatballs cook for 10 minutes. This is to ensure that the meatballs are cooked through on the inside. Remove from the heat.

4. Cook the pasta according to the packet instructions.

5. While the pasta is cooking add the onion to the same pan as the meatballs and saute for 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another minutes. Add the capers and the pasta sauce and bring to the boil. Add the meatballs and the cavolo nero and cook for another 3 minutes until the cabbage is wilted.

6. Serve the meatballs with the pasta and enjoy.


Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni June 13, 2015

Filed under: Italian,Pasta,Vegetarian — delishuss @ 7:27 am
Tags: , , , ,

I went to this brilliant cheese making demo (Mad Millie). I was in food heaven. We made ricotta, mozzarella, feta and yoghurt. I gave the ricotta a shot myself last weekend. I reckon it was a success but I realised pretty quickly that even I wouldn’t consume that much cheese on my own so I thought I would use it in this recipe. One of my lunch club girls made it before, mine is probably a much less healthy version. The filling of the Cannelloni tubes is a bit tricky, well more messy than tricky. Might be a good one to get the kids involved in, if you have some. I used 2 teaspoons to fill them; 1 to fill them with the ricotta mixture and the other one’s handle to push the mixture in. You could use a piping bag if you had one, it would be much handier.

The photo doesn’t do this justice, it’s oozing with deliciousness.

Serves 4-5 people


10 cannelloni tubes (instant kind)

1 tin of tomatoes with garlic and herbs

100ml passata

1 onion, diced

1 garlic clove, minced

1 teaspoon of allspice (I didn’t have nutmeg so used this instead)

Oil spray

250g ricotta cheese

50g Mozzarella cheese, shredded

50g parmesan, shredded

250g baby spinach

1/2 egg, beaten

2 tablespoons fresh basil

Salt and pepper


1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.

2. Heat a frying pan and spray some oil on it. Fry the allspice and the garlic for 2 minutes. Add the spinach; it does seem like a lot of spinach but it wilts away to nothing. On that note, let it wilt down and then remove from the heat and cool.

3. In a big bowl, beat the egg and the ricotta until smooth. Season with salt and pepper.

4. Add the spinach to the ricotta mixture.

5. Re-heat the same pan that you used for the spinach. Spray some more oil on the pan and saute the onions until soft and golden.

6. Add the tin of tomatoes and passata and simmer until the sauce has thickened.

7. While the sauce is reducing start preparing the cannelloni tubes. Add the ricotta filling into the tube with one teaspoon and push the mixture down with the handle of another teaspoon. Fill the remainder of the tubes in the same way.

8. Once the sauce has reduce, tear the basil and add to the sauce. Season the sauce with salt and pepper.

9. Add the cannelloni tubes to an oven proof dish. Pour over the sauce and sprinkle the cheeses over the sauce.

10. Bake in the oven for 40 minutes until the cheese has melted and is golden brown.

11. Serve with a green salad.



Beef Ragu August 17, 2014

Filed under: Favourites,Italian,Meat,Pasta,Soups and Stews — delishuss @ 7:41 am
Tags: , , , ,


I’ve been on a mini-holiday, just at home but it’s been a nice relaxing couple of days. I have been going a bit mad with the slow cooker. I made this Ragu and also pulled pork: I’m really enjoying using the slow cooker at the moment. I’ve had the best results with fattier cuts of meat. I’ve tried a curry recipe with lean lamb steaks and it shriveled up to nothing. I didn’t have a recipe for this one, I just winged it. I have another recipe on the blog for ragu, I reckon this is the better of the two.

6 serves


1.2 kilos stewing beef, chopped into chunks

1 onion, chopped

2 medium size carrots, roughly diced

5 cloves of garlic, crushed

2 oxo cubes

250 ml beef stock

250 ml red wine

Boquet garni

1 tin chopped tomatoes

4 slices of parma ham, chopped

1 sachet of tomato paste (25g or so)

4 tablespoons of olive oil

Salt and pepper to season



1. Heat a large frying pan and heat 2 tablespoon of the oil. Saute the onions and the carrots. Remove from the frying pan.


2. Heat the remainder of the oil and add half of the beef. Brown and remove from the pan and repeat with the remainder of the beef. While the 2 batches is browning, add the garlic and pancetta and fry off for about 3 minutes. Add the meat and the veg to the slow cooker.


3. Add the wine and the stock to the frying pan and bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer and add the tomato paste. Simmer for 5 mins and add the sauce to the slow cooker.


4. Sprinkle the two oxo cubes over the meat. Unwrap the bouquet garni. Remove some of the stalks of thyme and rosemary and take off their leaves and sprinkle over the meat. Tie the bouquet garni back up and add it to the slow cooker.


5. Pour over the tin of tomatoes and stir through. Season with salt and pepper.

6. I cooked it in the slow cooker for about 6 hours on high. You could do it on low for 8 hours if you have the time.  Once it has finished cooking. Remove the bouquet garni and any large leaves of rosemary or thyme stalks.



7. Serve with rigatoni pasta or any pasta of your choice. I threw the pasta into the ragu before serving to soak up some of the juices.


Note: Half way through the cooking, you can place a piece of kitchen paper on top of the liquid and soak up some of the fat on top. Some chefs recommend using slices of bread.


Italian Pork Bolognaise with Spaghetti February 13, 2012

Filed under: Healthy Eating,Meat,Weight Watchers Recipes — delishuss @ 10:32 pm
Tags: , , ,

I tried this recipe tonight as I thought the picture in the booklet looked nice. It’s a recipe from the Weight Watchers- Filling and Healthy Day booklet. I’ll be straight with you there wasn’t a whole of flavour in it, so I added some liquid stock and some tomato relish along the way to give it a bit of umph!

There’s no propoints for this recipe, it’s one from the new plan where you can just choose foods from the filling and healthy list. They also didn’t include the quantities for this recipe so I have added my guesstimates below.

Serves roughly 4


500g pork mince meat

1 onion, finely chopped

1 carrot, diced

1 celery stick, diced

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1 can tinned tomatoes

1 tsp healthy oil

1 tsp chopped fresh rosemary

1 tsp chopped fresh thyme

2 tsp liquid stock

3 tsp tomato relish

Salt and pepper



1. Fry extra lean pork mince with the oil.

2. Add diced onion, carrot, and celery.

3. Stir in the garlic, rosemary and thyme

4. Add the tin of chopped tomatoes, relish, and stock and simmer until reduced and thick.

Serve with cooked wholemeal pasta and a green salad dressed with lemon juice.



Margherita Pizza January 16, 2012

Filed under: Italian,Weight Watchers Recipes — delishuss @ 10:16 pm
Tags: , ,

I often fancy a little indulgence at the weekend, pizza would be up there on my list of treats. So I was delighted when I saw this healthy option by Weight Watchers. I got the recipe from the February issue of the Weight Watchers magazine. I’m always put off by the effort involved in making pizza from scratch but this is really handy. Worth trying some weekend when you can take it at your leisure.

13 propoints per serving

serves 4


200g strong white bread flour

200g plain white flour, plus tbsp extra for kneading

1 tsp salt

1 tsp (1/2 c 15g sachet) fast action dried yeast

2 tsp olive oil

250ml tepid water

To top the pizza

1 x speedy tomato sauce recipe (see bottom of recipe)

150g cherry tomatoes, quartered

2 tbsp shredded fresh basil

125g pack reduced fat mozzarella cheese, drained and diced

25g freshly grated parmesan cheese


1. To make the pizza dough, combine both flours in a large mixing bowl with the salt and yeast. Make a well in the centre and add the olive oil and almost all of the tepid water. ( The water should feel just warm, if it is too hot, it may kill the yeast). Use a table knife or kitchen spoon to bring the liquid and flour together, adding just enough to make a soft dough that comes together without being sticky, leaving the bowl clean.

2. Dust the work surface with 1 tbsp of the extra flour and start to knead the dough. Using the heel of your hands, roll the dough away from you, pressing down firmly as you do so, then bring the dough back towards you and repeat with the other hand, so you are rolling the dough back and forth, alternating your hands as you roll. Knead for 3-4 minutes until the dough feels soft, springy and elastic. If you prod the dough,, the indentation should spring back lightly.

3. Return the dough to the mixing bowl and cover with clingfilm. Lease to rise for 1 hour or until it has doubled in size. Preheat the oven to gas mark 7/220 degrees celsius/200 degrees celsius with fan oven.

4. While the dough is rising, make the speedy tomato sauce.

5. Punch the dough down to deflate it, then divide it into 4 balls. Dust 2 baking trays with a little of the remaining flour and use the rest to roll out the dough.

6. For each pizza, shape a ball of dough into a fat disc, then use a rolling pin to gently press down on the dough, start to flatten it into a neat circle before you roll out. Use the rolling pin to roll out to a 20cm disc. Transfer to a baking tray. Repeat for the other dough balls.

7. Spread pizza with a quarter of the sauce, then scatter with the cherry tomatoes, basil, mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Season generously with black pepper and leave to rise for 10-15 minutes.

8. Bake in the oven for 12-15 minutes until the bases are risen, golden brown and crisp at the edges. Swap the trays over after 8-10 minutes.

Speedy Tomato Sauce

Place a 400g can chopped tomatoes, 1 crushed garlic clove, 1/2 tsp grated lemon zest, 1/4 tsp mixed dried herbs and 1 tsp castor sugar in a lidded saucepan and bring to the boil. Cover and then simmer for 10 minutes, stirring once or twice, then season to taste.


Pasta Arabiata December 26, 2011

Filed under: Pasta — delishuss @ 7:07 pm
Tags: , , ,

Belated Happy Christmas everyone. I hope you all had a nice enjoyable day.

As like most houses on Stephen’s Day, there was some leftover ham from the Christmas dinner. I didn’t fancy having  turkey and ham again so I decided to whip up some pasta. I thoroughly enjoyed this recipe. It was ready in a matter of minutes. Fantastic.


Serves 1


1 tablespoon of olive oil

75g pasta of your choice ( I used Fusilli)

1/2 an onion, chopped

1 clove of garlic, crushed

1/2 red pepper

200g of arabiata style chopped tomatoes (can be found in Lidl), alternatively if you can’t get those, just use half a finely chopped chilli and fry off with the garlic.

75g-100g chopped ham (gamon style ham)

40g grated cheese

Salt and black pepper



1. Start by putting the pasta on to boil. Cook according to the packet instructions.

2.  Meanwhile, heat a saucepan and add the oil. When the oil is hot, add the peppers and onion and cook for 5-6 minutes.

3. Add the garlic and cook for another 2 minutes.

4. Then add the ham and fry to a further 2 minutes.

5. Add the chopped tomatoes, bring to the boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer for about 10 minutes.

6. Taste and season if necessary. Stir in the cooked pasta.

7. Remove to a serving dish. Sprinkle over the cheese and place under the grill for a few minutes until the cheese is melted.

Then relax, have a glass of wine and put the feet up.


Ragu alla Bolognese May 18, 2011

Filed under: Meat,Pasta — delishuss @ 9:05 pm
Tags: , ,

Hi there, I have to confess sometimes I resort to a jar of sauce for a Bolognese. Really there’s no excuse, as sauces are so easy to make. Here’s an authentic Italian recipe for you, from ‘Mama’s Italian Cookbook’. Very tasty, yum. Hope you enjoy it.

The recipe serves 4


25g dried ceps

125 ml lukewarm water

1 tsp butter

50g pancetta, diced

1 small onion, finely chopped

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

2 small carrots, finely diced

2 celery sticks, finely diced

300g beef mince

1 pinch sugar

Freshly grated nutmeg

1 tbsp tomato puree

125ml red wine

250g passata

1 oxo cube (not in the original recipe)

Salt and pepper


1. Soak the ceps in the water for 20 minutes.

2. Melt the butter in a saucepan, add the pancetta and fry.

3. Add the onion and garlic and fry until the onion is translucent. Stir in the carrots and celery and cook for a few minutes, stirring frequently.

4. Add the beef and fry, stirring constantly. Season with salt and pepper, a pinch of sugar, oxo cube and some nutmeg.

5. Stir in the tomato puree and cook for a minute or two then add the wine.

6. Mix in the passata. Thinly slice the ceps and add them to the sauce.

7. Pour the soaking water through a fines sieve into the suace. Thicken the sauce by cooking it over a low heat for 1 hour.


Spaghetti with Meatballs December 27, 2010

Filed under: Meat,Pasta — delishuss @ 8:14 pm
Tags: , ,

I got a couple of new cookery books as presents so I will be bombarding you with more recipes :-). This one is from Mama’s Italian Cookbook. It’s very tasty. The recipe requires passata; I had some left over tomatoes, so I used those and some passata. I’m not a big passata fan, maybe it’s the type I’m using but I always find it has a strange after taste. Does anyone know of a good brand that they can recommend?

Serves 6


1 potato, diced

400g/14 oz beef mince

1 onion, finely chopped

1 egg

4 tbsp chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

plain flour, for dusting

5 tbsp virgin olive oil

400ml/14 fl oz passata

2tbsp tomato puree

400g/ 14 oz dried spaghetti

Salt and pepper

6 shredded fresh basil leaves and freshly grated Parmesan cheese, to garnish


1. Place the pototo in a small saucepan, add cold water to cover and a pinch of salt, and bring to the boil.

2. Cook for 10-15 minutes, until tender then drain. Either mash thoroughly with a potato masher or fork or pass through a potato ricer.

3. Combine the potato, mince, onion, egg and parsley in a bowl and season with salt and pepper.

4. Spread out the flour on a plate. With dampened hands, shape the meat mixture into walnut sized balls and roll in the flour. Shake off the excess.

5. Heat the oil in a heavy-based frying pan, add the meatballs and cook over a medium heat, stirring and turning frequently, for 8-10 minutes, until golden all over.

6. Add the passata and tomato puree and cook for a further 10 minutes, until the sauce is reduced and thickened.

7. meanwhile, bring a large saucepan of lightly salted water to the boil. Add the pasta, bring back to the boil and cook for 8-10 minutes, until tender but still firm to bite.

8. Drain well and add to the meatball sauce, tossing well to coat. Transfer to a warmed serving dish. Garnish with the basil leaves and grated Parmesan cheese and serve immediately.


Italian Style Tomato Soup September 13, 2010

Filed under: Soups and Stews,Starters,Vegetarian — delishuss @ 10:28 pm
Tags: , ,

This is very simple to make. It’s pretty healthy as well. You would probably get about 6 servings out of this.


1x400g can chopped tomatoes

1 jar passata

1 large onion, chopped

1x 400g butter beans

2x leeks, chopped

2x cloves, garlic crushed

300ml stock

handful of chopped basil

Salt and black pepper


1. Fry off the onions and leeks in a lidded saucepan for 2-3 minutes at high heat. Reduce the heat, cover and saute for 3 more minutes. Add in the garlic and stir, fry for another 1 minutes.

2. Add in the tomatoes, passata and stock and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes.

3. Add the butter beans and basil and stir. Cook for a further 5 minutes.

4. Season to taste and serve.

This would be great served with the Traditional Soda Bread With Sundried Tomato & Parmesan.


Italian Chick Pea and Pasta Stew August 22, 2010

Filed under: Healthy Eating,Pasta,Vegetarian,Weight Watchers Recipes — delishuss @ 8:32 pm
Tags: , , ,

This is good for making at the weekend and freezing or also good for family dinner. The portion sizes are pretty decent also.

Serves 4

3 points per serving


175g (6oz) farfalle

low fat cooking spray

1 large onion, chopped

1 celery stick, sliced

 2 carrots, diced

850 mil (1 1/2 pints) vegetable stock

1 x 400g can chopped tomatoes

1 tablespoon tomato puree

2 bay leaves

2 sprigs of fresh rosemary (left whole)

1 x 400g can chick peas drained

250g (9oz) spinach, washed, thick stalks removed and leaves sliced

Salt and freshly ground black pepper


1. Cook the pasta according to the packet instructions. Drain.

2. Meanwhile, spray a  large saucepan with the cooking spray and add the onion, celery and carrots. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring regularly. Add the stock, tomatoes, tomato puree, bay leaves and rosemary and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Add the chick peas and cook for another 10 minutes. Remove the rosemary sprigs and bay leaves.

3. Stir in the spinach and cooked pasta and cook for a final 2 minutes. Season. Serve in large bowls.

Variation- For a meat variation, you can add 250g (90z) lean thick cut ham, cubed with the chick peas in step 2, for an extra 1 1/2 points value per serving.