Advanced search

Stuck in a dinner rut - new ideas needed please......

(17 Posts)
sweetheart Thu 04-Sep-08 12:48:27


I'm always looking for new dinner ideas as I get bored with the usual all the time.

Typically we eat:-
Saus & mash
Saus casserole
toad in the hole
Chicken Chasseur
Spag Bol
chicken, cream, lemon and grape thing - not sure what it's called!
tuna steaks
sweet chilli / kung po prawn
pasta bake type things

I usually coock stuff which doesn't take too much time/preperation etc and that are low fat / calories as I'm usually on some kind of diet!

Any ideas would be very gratefully received - thanks!

RebelMum72 Thu 04-Sep-08 13:01:58

I know what you mean - we got so sick of eating the same things all the time, even though they were nice things!

I now do menu planning, so we have a few things a week which we know and love wink and then at least 1 or 2 new recipes or things we don't have very often.
I collect recipes from the internet - I've got a big folder full of the ones that I've tried and we've enjoyed. And I find the Sainsbury's Magazine has really good recipes in it too (I've collected them for years, I find them more useful than most of the cookbooks I've got!).

But none of that actually answers your question as to new ideas, so this is a selection of things we've had over the last couple of weeks:

- Homemade Pizza (a "spanish" one with Serrano ham, grilled peppers (from a jar) and olives, and a tuna and mushroom one)

- Moroccan Chicken and Chickpea Tagine which I'm serving with Sweet Potato and flatbread (this makes a nice change to the usual curry flavours - it's the same sort of thing)

- Mushroom Risotto (usually do some sort of risotto almost every week as it's easy to do, doesn't take long and we all love it! I'm trying a Pumpkin Risotto this week)

- Salmon Pasta Bake

- Gnocchi with a Spinach and Cream Cheese Sauce

- Spicy Turkey Wraps (actually, wraps are also something we do quite often as you can stick anything you want in them)

- Warm Mixed Sausage & New Potato Salad with Course Grain Mustard Dressing

- Vegetable Frittata (again, really easy to do, and as long as you've got potatoes, eggs and onions, you can stick anything else into it)

Hope some of that help! If you need more specific recipes, let me know

sweetheart Thu 04-Sep-08 13:19:20

Thanks for that - I am very similar actually in the fact that I meal plan and every now and again try and find new things to throw in. Some have actually stuck as regulars now. I try and get a good mix of chicken / pork / beef or mince / fish accompanied by potato / rice / pasta / noodles etc.....

The morrocan chicken sounds lovely if you could post the recipe and not sure what Gnocchi is but the spinach and cream cheese sounds nice so I could give it a try if you don't mind.

Thanks very much!

dizzydixies Thu 04-Sep-08 13:20:37

I made a sausage, red onion and apple casserole that I got the menu for off here last night and it was lovely

took no time at all to make and I know you make sausage casserole but this one was lovely and different to our usual sausage casserole offerings smile

dizzydixies Thu 04-Sep-08 13:21:26

here you go!

Bewilderbeast Thu 04-Sep-08 13:24:54

Smoked haddock stovie - haddock, onions, potatos, black pepper and water, takes 30 mins and one pan, tastes lovely.

Spaghetti carbonara, ready in under 10 mins, easy and yummy especially with some garlic bread.

4 hour lamb shoulder at a weekend, bit different to a roast and you can bung it in and ignore it with minimum effot - nice served with mash.

Mushroom risotto - 25mins again nice with some garlic bread or bruschetta

Chorizo hash or chorizo stew both easy to knock together with storecupboard ingredients

sweetheart Thu 04-Sep-08 13:28:58

thanks dizzy - I've scoured the recipe list already and jotted down some good ones - yours being one of them grin

sweetheart Thu 04-Sep-08 13:30:52

thanks bewilder - do you have any recipes for the lamb, rissotto and the chorizo stew? I'm rubbish at making things without a recipe to follow blush

NoblesseOblige Thu 04-Sep-08 13:32:11

stirfrys are always quick and easy and you can bung anything in smile

TillyScoutsmum Thu 04-Sep-08 13:33:47

Thai Chicken Rice Quick, very tasty and reasonably low fat

Another favorite is Jamie Oliver's Salmon in parma ham with herby lentils. About 15 mins start to finish and again, really, tasty and fairly healthy. Let me know if you want the recipe

Mercy Thu 04-Sep-08 13:35:25

Veg stir fry
Omelettes & salad
Baked salmon with new potatoes and peas
Home-made burger, chips and salad (not exactly low fat though!)

RebelMum72 Thu 04-Sep-08 13:38:55

Gnocchi are basically like pasta or dumplings but made with potato - I buy them fresh (you can make your own, but I haven't noticed any difference if you buy a good quality one) see here for more. They are a really good alternative to pasta.

The recipes: (amounts are for 2 adults and 1 small child that eats a remarkable amount considering he's only 18mon!)

-500g fresh gnocchi
-1 pack cream cheese eg philadelphia (you can use low fat, won't make any difference)
-400g frozen chopped spinach (can obviously also use fresh)
-1 clove garlic, crushed
-any grated cheese for melting on top
-salt, pepper and nutmeg to taste

The instructions for gnocchi usually say to boil them, but I find they are too sticky and mushy then, so I fry them in a little butter or oil until they are slightly brown and crispy on the outside.
In the mean time, melt/cook the spinach in saucepan and then mix in the cream cheese until melted, and garlic. Add salt, pepper and grated nutmeg to taste.

Mix together with the gnocchi, scatter the grated cheese on top and stick under the grill for a few minutes until lightly browned.

Ta-da! Very, very simple but remarkably tasty (if you like spinach!)

The Moroccan Tagine is a customised version from a recipe in Sainsbury's Magazine years ago. I make no claim to its authenticity, but it is rather tasty!

-Chicken Breast or Thighs (whichever you prefer, light or dark meat, and amount depends on how many are eating - I use 2 cb for us)
-1 medium onion, chopped
-1 tsp ground cinnamon
-1 tsp ground ginger
-1 tsp turmeric (originally saffron but I never have any at home!)
-1/2 tsp ground coriander
-2 garlic cloves, crushed
-1 heaped tsp marigold boullion powder (or similar)
-1 tsp tomato puree
-1 can chickpeas, drained
-1 tsp cornflour (for thickening, you can leave it out if you like)

In a largish casserole dish, fry the chicken pieces in oil until lightly browned. Remove from the dish and turn down heat.
Fry the onion until soft, then add garlic and all the spices and stock powder. Return chicken, and mix well. Add enough hot water to cover the chicken, then mix the cornflour with a little cold water and stir that in and add the tomato puree. Allow to cook on a low heat for about 20mins or so. Stir in the chickpeas, allow to warm through, and that's it!
You can serve it with couscous, which would be traditional, or rice, bread or potatoes.

sweetheart Thu 04-Sep-08 15:04:05

ohhh back from lunch and loads of ideas - thanks!

We have had stir fry's in the past but dh see's them as uber healthy and therefore tasteless - even though I think I make a mean stir fry! He's not into "diet food"!!!!

I'm just getting to grips with fish and can stomach cod. tuna, sordfish and prawns but haven't ventured much further yet - I have tried salmon but find the flavour too fishey I'm affraid but thanks for the ideas.

sweetheart Thu 04-Sep-08 15:05:39

rebel what on earth is marigold boullion powder???? I've never heard of it!

sweetheart Thu 04-Sep-08 15:06:44

Also, could you tell me where to look in the supermarket for gnocchi? Will it be with the rice / pasta etc???

Bewilderbeast Fri 05-Sep-08 20:47:24

rebelmum I am stealing both those recipes they sound fab
sweetheart you can get fresh gnocchi in the fresh pasta section or you can get it in the dried pasta section. Marigold boullion is a powdered stock you can get both veg and chicken, it is generally considered to be the best powdered stock you can get.

I'm not a recipe follower as such so here goes:

Ok lamb recipe

turn oven to maximum heat

score a lamb shoulder either a half or a whole depending on hom many you are feeding. Bung lamb in roasting tin. peel 6-8 garlic cloves and chuck over the lamb. Throw over one pack of fresh rosemary. Drizzle a generous amount of olive oil over the lamb. tightly cover the tin with two layers of foil. Put in oven, turn oven down to 170 degrees leave lamb in for 4 hours. Eat!


melt some butter in a glug of olive oil
dice an onion and soften in the butter and oil until it becomes transparent.
add chopped mushrooms of your choice, 1-2 cloves chopped garlic and carnoroli or arborio rice (about half a box of rice will generously feed 3) and stir for 1-2mins until the rice starts to go translucent and is well coated in the butter and oil.
Add a glass of white wine or vermouth. When the wine has almost boiled away turn the heat down and add about half a pint of stock (make up one pint with 1 heaped tsp of marigold powder, half a handful of dried porcini mushrooms a large bay leaf and boiling water). When the stock has almost all been absorbed add more. Keep doing this until the rice just resists when you try to bite it if you run out of stock just make more or add hot water. Stir the risotto frequently during cooking. When cooked it should not be wet (damp maybe but there should be no visible liquid). Turn off the heat, stir in grated parmesan and a knob of butter. Leave for 2 mins - season with pepper and serve.

Chorizo stew

chop an onion, carrots, potatos and celery and a chorizo. fry veg briefly add chorizo, fry until it starts to release its oils. Chuck into stew pan or slow cooker. Add a tin or 2 of plum toms/chopped toms or passata. Add some mixed herbs/herbs de provence or thyme and salt and pepper and a tbsp of tom puree. Cook until just before the veg is ready to give in to a prod with a knife add a tin or two of chickpeas/black eye peas/kidney beans/haricot beans basically whatever you happen to like. Cook for anothe 20-25 mins. Add a cup of frozen peas, cook for 5 mins more. Serve with crusty bread/couscous

primigravida Sat 06-Sep-08 08:24:48

I can't do links but is excellent for both recipes and meal planning.

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: