#TurkishByHJ – Kıymalı Fasulye-Ispanak

Kıymalı Fasulye-Ispanak

Kıymalı Fasulye-Ispanak

Mains for 5 people

This Turkish main that consist of meat & either beans (Fasulye) or spinach (Ispanak). It is ideally served with rice cooked in butter, but I am service mine with wheat which is much firmer.

 Ingredients:

  • 300g flat beans (50p)

    Kıymalı ingredients

    Kıymalı ingredients

  • 300g spinach (40p)
  • 1 tinned of chopped tomato (50p)
  • 1 red onion
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 800g lamb chops (£4.00)
  • Oregano
  • Fresh Mint (50p)
  • Fresh coriander (50p)
  • 3 Turkish peppers (25p)

    Raw wheat grains

    Raw wheat grains

  • Paprika
  • Chilli flakes
  • Black pepper
  • Salt
  • Ground Cumin
  • Vegetable oil.
  • Pomegranate (50p)
  • Natural yogurt (45p)

£7.60

Accompaniment:

  • 500g wheat (99p)
  • 50g butter
  • 25g onion

Total cost for the main £8.59 or £1.71 per person.

All the above ingredients were necessary as I tried to make this dish as authentic as possible. The most costly item on the list was the lamb chops, found in Iceland. For even lower budget, revert to chicken which can be bought from £2.00. The yogurt and pomegranates are also extra and often found in Turkish mains. Both are not really necessary. Instead of wheat, I could have stuck to rice or barley which are half the price of wheat. Excluding the yogurt and Pomegranate well as using chicken wings instead of lamb and rice instead of wheat would have bought the main’s cost down to around £5.15

Method:

Rinse and cut the lamb chops in smaller pieces big enough to be a mouth full. Place in a bowl. Peel & press the garlic over the lamb then add black pepper and salt. Mix well and set aside.

Lamb cuts

Lamb cuts

Rinse the flat beans, cut off the extremities and cut them in pieces of about 3cm in length. Do the same for the Turkish peppers and set aside. The Turkish pepper are much more flavourful than your regular green sweet peppers and they are not hot.

Cut off the spinach leaves from their stalks, rinse the leaves individually before roughly cutting them. Set aside. I used the large spinach leaves.

Peel and chop the onion, set aside. Pick off about 15 leaves of mint and a hand full of fresh coriander, rinse and chop finely. Set aside.

In a large sauce pan, heat 4 tablespoons of vegetable oil, add the meat and fry for 5 minutes turning the pieces of meat until all sides are browned. Now add ¾ of the chopped onion, mix and cover the pan. Allow the meat to sweat for 10 minutes.

Flat bean and Turkish pepper cut

Flat bean and Turkish pepper cut

Now, add tomato, cumin, paprika, chilli flakes, oregano, mint, coriander and 100ml water. Mix well, taste and adjust seasoning before covering to simmer for 20 minutes.

Halfway through the 20 minutes, add the flat beans & Turkish peppers, stirs and cover again. At the end of the 20 minutes, add the spinach stir well and cover to simmer for another 5 minutes.

By the time the spinach are softened, the meat would have been cooking for 45 minutes in total, so it should be really tender and almost falling off the bone.

Steaming Kıymalı

Steaming Kıymalı

Now on to the Wheat. The Turkish would have served the meat above with a Sade Pilavi, which means rice fried in butter, then cooked with stock… Please read the Wiki page about Turkish food, such an interesting mix of flavours and techniques. I am not using rice obviously, but I am cooking my wheat in the “Sade” way.

Rinse off the starch from the wheat, set aside. In a big enough pan with a lid, heat 50g butter and add the chopped onion. Until it starts to caramelise. Now add the wheat with a pinch of salt and stir fry for about 5 minutes to obtain a very slightly toasty smell (or burn if you will) coming from the pan.

Close up cooked wheat

Close up cooked wheat

Now pour over it 500ml of stock and cover to simmer for 30 minutes.  You will need to open the pan very often to check the water levels and add more water until the wheat softens.

Now. Wheat does not soften to the level of rice and can be very chewy, if you have never used it, after cooking it for 20-25 minutes you should be able to eat it without too much efforts.

Wheat is a great alternative to rice.

I server mine hot, topped with the Lamb Kıymalı with yogurt and fresh pomegranates jewels.

I chose to use the pomegranates instead of dry fruits because they are less sweet and bring much colour to the plate.

Kıymalı Fasulye-Ispanak serve with sade wheat , natural yogurt and pomegranate

Kıymalı Fasulye-Ispanak serve with sade wheat , natural yogurt and pomegranate

Enjoy!

To read how I came up with the menu read here… Other elements from this Turkish menu include a meze with Babaganoush, beans hummus, flat bread, cabbage dolma & tomato/almond dip

#Whats4Lunch – The hot combos 4

Spinach, Chicken and potato

Spinach, Chicken and potato

Spinach & Chicken (total spent 30p)

 Ingredients:

  • 5 – 6 cubes of frozen spinach 30p – (1 pack of 15 cubes costs £1)
  • Leftover roast chicken – A thigh or a leg (a single ready cooked thigh cost 70p at Sainsbury’s rotisserie).
  • Black pepper
  • Salt
  • Garlic granules
  • Mix herbs
  • A pinch of stock cube
  • 1 tea spoon butter
  • Chilli flakes
  • Leftover roast potato – Or jacket potato

Method:

Put 5-6 cubes of spinach in a bowl and leave out of the freezer overnight.

Seasoning the spinach

Seasoning the spinach

In the morning, squeeze out the excess of water from the spinach and season the raw spinach with black pepper from the grinder, dry garlic, chilli flakes and salt.

Now use half of the butter and mix it up in the spinach before pouring it in the Tupperware and topping it with the chicken and the potato that you would have cut in smaller pieces.

Spread the leftover butter on the chicken before placing the lid on the lunch box.

Spinach, Chicken and potato

Spinach, Chicken and potato

When you get to work, place the lunch box in the fridge and at lunch time, lift the lid a little bit to let out steam. Place the box in the microwave for 7-8 minutes.

Stir the spinach from bottom to top to spread the juices that no doubt would have cumulated at the bottom of the lunch box.

Plate and enjoy.

All the unpriced can be found in the house and the spinach had to be bought specially. So, the total spent is 30p.

#Whats4Lunch – The Sandwiches set 3

Triple decker chicken

Triple decker chicken

Triple decker chicken sandwich (total cost 76p)

Ingredients:

Triple decker 1

Triple decker 1

  • 20 fresh spinach leaves or lettuce – 10p
  • 1 fresh medium tomato 10p
  • 3 brown bread slices – 6p (pack of 24 brown slices costs 49p)
  • mustard
  • 1 leftover chicken thigh – 50p

Method:

This sandwich was made with left over roast chicken. De bone the chicken thigh, rinse and cut the tomato in about 8 slices. Rice to spinach leaves.

Lay 2 slices of bread on a flat surface and spread with a thin layer of mustard.

Triple decker 2

Triple decker 2

On top of the mustard, layer about 10 spinach leaves, then half of the chicken and 4 tomato slices.

Cover with the second slice previously speeded with mustard.

Now spread the mustard on the side of the top slice that is covering the first deck of this sandwich. Again, layer, the leftover spinach, tomato, chicken. Take the 3rd slice of bread and spread on the mustard and place it face down on the sandwich.

Triple decker 4

Triple decker 3

All you have to do now is press the sandwich down gently and cut it from corner to corner, then place both halves in your lunch container.

Et voila!

 

Triple decker 4

Triple decker 4

Triple decker 5

Triple decker 5

Triple decker 5

Triple decker 6

Click here to see the tuna pitta and the baguette avocado vegan sandwich.

Next up, the salads.

Asparagus & spinach soup

The green stuff all god for you!

The green stuff all god for you!

Serves 5

This is the starter for the Food Bank Menu.

Ingredients:

  • 50g fresh parsley (40p)

    The soup ingredients

    The soup ingredients

  • 265g drained spinach – 1 small tin (FB or 0.65p)
  • 244g drained asparagus – 1 small tin (FB or £2.00 (would be cheaper fresh))
  • 10g fresh ginger (or dry ginger 10p)
  • 50g onion (in the cupboard)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 3 heaps tablespoon dry milk (FB or 10p (or use breakfast milk))
  • 2 stock cubes (2p)

Total spend: on Food bank budget £0.52 or £0.10 per person. On low budget £3.27 or £0.65p per person.

Method:

Dice onion, garlic and ginger. It is preferable to grate the ginger if you can. If you do not have a grater, finely chop it, then bash to bring out it full flavour.

Removed parsley leaves from the stalk, rinse and chop. Set aside. Drain the spinach and asparagus, leave them for 5-10 minutes in the sieve to allow as much liquid from the tin as possible to drain away.

Prepare the stock; place the stock cubes to dissolve in 800ml of boiling water and stir in the dry milk until all the granules have dissolved set aside.

Not exactly green from the tin

Not exactly green from the tin

In a deep pan, heat 3 tablespoons oil and fry for two minutes the ginger, onion and garlic.

Add the asparagus and spinach salt and pepper then fry until the all he water left in them evaporates. This will take about 5 minutes to 7 minutes on medium heat. Do not cover the pan.

Add the stock and bring the contents of the pan to boil until it no longer foams. That will take another 5 minutes.

Taste and adjust the seasoning. Now add the parsley and simmer for just 3 minutes to wilt it. Do not let the parsley lose its colour.

Remove the pan from the heat and using a hand blender, liquidize the content of the pan until smooth before serving as suggested with home made croutons (see how to make them here).

Serving suggestion

Enjoy!