5 DAYS TO PAYDAY MENU

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DAY ONE: Roast Chicken, Potatoes & Mixed Vegetables

Serves 4, prep time 20 minutes, cooking time 45-50 minutes

INGREDIENTS
1 large free-range chicken
2 tbsp olive oil
Rock salt
Fresh ground black pepper
15-20 small unpeeled potatoes
2 large lemons, 1 sliced
6 garlic crushed
1 handful chopped fresh rosemary

FOR THE GRAVY
3 tbsp of cold water
2 tbsp of cornflour
1 ½ pints of chicken stock
1 vegetable stock cube
Juices from the roasting tray

METHOD
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Wash and trim the chicken. Rub the chicken with oil, salt and black pepper. Place the chicken in a large roasting tray, lift the skin from the breast and slide in the lemon slices. Tuck the skin back under the chicken. Now push the garlic cloves, quartered lemon and rosemary into the chicken. Use cocktail sticks to hold the skin closed. Place the chicken in the oven for around 45-50 minutes. Meanwhile, bring a large pan of salted water to the boil and add the potatoes and two cloves of garlic. Cook for 10-12 minutes, then drain. Place the potatoes in the tray with the chicken and baste. Sprinkle with some more chopped rosemary and return to the oven. Now prepare the gravy, heat the chicken stock in a pan. In a cup mix the cornflour with cold water and pour into the pan. Crush in the vegetable cube and bring to the boil. When the gravy has thickened, remove from the heat and leave to one side. After 45 minutes check the chicken’s cooked by pushing a fork into the breast, if juices run clear it’s cooked. Ten minutes before the chicken’s done prepare some vegetables, (I’ve used some mixed seasonal vegetables). When the chicken is cooked remove it from the tray and place on a serving board. Remove the potatoes from the tray, stir the juices and stir into the gravy pan. Carve and serve with the roasted potatoes, vegetables and gravy.

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DAY TWO: Chicken Caesar Salad

Serves 2, prep time 15 minutes

INGREDIENTS
FOR THE DRESSING
1 garlic clove crushed
4 tinned anchovies
2 tbsp of grated parmesan
5 tbsp mayonnaise
1 tbsp red grape vinegar
½ tsp of salt

FOR THE CROUTONS
2 slices of toasted fresh bread
2 tbsp olive oil

FOR THE SALAD
2 cups of sliced cooked chicken
1 large romaine lettuce sliced
Parmesan shavings
4 anchovies chopped
Salt & pepper

METHOD
In a pestle and mortar, bash the garlic with the anchovies into a smooth paste. Add the grated parmesan, mayonnaise, add the red grape vinegar, season to taste and mix. Chill the dressing, while you prepare the croutons. Place the bread under a grill until golden, remove from the grill and brush with olive oil. Return to the grill until crisp. Remove the crusts and cut the bread slices into equal squares. Place the lettuce in a serving dish and mix with half the dressing. Top with chicken and anchovies, add the shaved parmesan. Scatter over the croutons, then drizzle with the remaining of the dressing and serve.

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DAY THREE: Chicken Stir Fry

Serves 4, prep time 15 minutes, cooking time 20 minutes

FOR THE EGG
1 tbsp of oil
4 free-range eggs
2 tbsp of sesame oil
1 tbsp of soy sauce
Salt & pepper

FOR THE RICE
2 cloves of garlic
1 red pepper diced
1 red chopped red onion
1 tbsp of sliced fresh ginger
1 small tin of sweetcorn
1 cup of cooked edamame peas
2 cups of cooked chicken
3 cups of cooked rice
Handful of chopped coriander
1 tbsp of flaked chillis
2 chopped spring onions to serve

METHOD
In a jug, whisk all the egg ingredients and season. Preheat the grill to a medium temperature. Heat the oil in a pan and pour in the eggs, move and tilt the pan, so the egg is even. Cook for 3-4 minutes. Check the underside of the egg is cooked then place under the grill for 5 minutes until golden. Remove from the heat and allow to cool, then slice into even squares and set to one side. In a wok heat some oil, saute the onion, garlic and ginger. Next, add the red pepper and season, stir for three minutes.  Add the peas and sweetcorn, keeping the ingredients moving in the wok. Next, add the cooked chicken, and a splash of soy sauce and stir in some chilli flakes. Then gradually stir the cooked rice. Finally add the egg, coriander and stir for a couple of minutes. Remove from the heat and serve topped with some chopped spring onions.

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DAY FOUR: Chicken & Sweetcorn Soup

Serves 4, prep time 15 minutes, cooking time 20 minutes

INGREDIENTS
2 ½ pints of fresh chicken stock
2 chopped garlic cloves
1 tin of creamed sweetcorn
1 small tin of sweetcorn
4 sliced spring onions, keeping some to serve
2 cups of shredded cooked chicken
2 tsp soy sauce
1 tbsp sweet chilli sauce
2 egg whites
1 tbsp sesame oil
Salt & pepper

METHOD
Pour the chicken stock, garlic, creamed sweetcorn, corn kernels and half the spring onion into a large saucepan over medium heat. Season, cover and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer for ten minutes. Add chicken, soy sauce and sweet chilli sauce and stir. Simmer for 10 minutes or until heated through. Stir in egg white and sesame oil. Remove from the heat and serve with some toasted bread and topped with remaining spring onion.

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DAY FIVE: Vegetarian Omelette

Serves 2, prep time 10 minutes, cooking time 10 minutes

INGREDIENTS
Oil for frying
1 chopped onion
1 chopped garlic clove
4 free-range eggs
1 handful of cooked green beans
1 handful of butternut squash
1 handful of edamame beans
10 small roast potatoes, halved
1 cup of grated mozzarella
Salt & pepper

METHOD
Preheat the grill to a high heat. Heat the oil in the pan and gently fry the garlic and onion until softened. Pour in the beaten egg, even out in the pan and cook for two minutes. Add the cooked vegetables and season. Place the potatoes on top, sprinkle over half the grated cheese. Place the pan under the grill until the cheese melts. Remove from the heat and add the remainder of the grated cheese and serve.

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