When it comes to making healthy choices in your nutrition plan and not falling for the quick fix option of reaching for something ready made from the supermarkets, the key is to be well ahead in your planning.
I plan a Sunday afternoon once a month to make a few stock items to have in the fridge or freezer ready to pull out and whip up a meal in minutes. Soup is an obvious one and you can find a few recipes on our blog, but sauces are also a great way to save the headache of starting from scratch.
You can store these sauces in a jar in the fridge or freeze into ice cube blocks ready to throw straight into the pan.
Here’s two of our favourites, a thai green curry sauce and a basic indian curry sauce. All you need to do is fry up your meat or vegetable choices, add a few teaspoons (or more if you like it spicy!), and a tin of organic coconut milk. The curry sauce can also be used with cream and a tomato base to. Then let the aromas fill your house as you get ready to enjoy your own creation.
Experiment, play with your food and enjoy!
THAI GREEN CURRY SAUCE
The ingredients may be lengthy but you can keep most of these items in the pantry for ages an the end result is well worth the extra trip to the shops. Easy, quick and so tasty. If you love thai food then this is the perfect recipe. When you are ready to cook with it, just stir it into the pan after you’ve cooked off your veggies and meat and add coconut milk or cream. Serve with fresh coriander.
2 x lemon grass stalks
2 x shallots
4-6 medium green chillis
2 garlic gloves
Bunch of fresh coriander
1 x line (juice and zest)
8 caffir lime leaves
1tsp coriander seed
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp black pepper
Put everything into a blender and whizz up on high speed until it forms a coarse paste. Store in the fridge for up to 3 weeks.
BASIC INDIAN CURRY PASTE
This is a basic curry sauce, which can be frozen in batches and transformed into two different curries: Creamy korma by adding coconut milk or madras by adding tomatoes perfect.
WARNING! Freezing intensifies the seasoning, so taste the curry sauce and adjust the seasoning to taste.
3 large onions, roughly chopped
12 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
8cm piece fresh ginger, roughly chopped
2 tsp cumin seeds
2 tsp fennel seeds
2 bay leaves
1 cinnamon stick
6 tbsp groundnut oil
1 tbsp ground coriander
1 tbsp ground turmeric
2 tbsp tomato purée
1 tsp salt
Place the chopped onions, garlic and ginger in a food processor and blitz to make a paste.
Heat a large non-stick frying pan, add the cumin seeds, fennel seeds, bay leaves and cinnamon stick and let them sizzle for a minute. Add the oil and, once hot, pour in the paste from the food processor and fry for 10-15 minutes until golden brown.
Add the ground spices, tomato purée and salt and pour in 600ml water. Bring to a simmer for 10 minutes until thickened.
Leave to cool completely, then divide evenly between containers, label and freeze for up to 3 months.