Healthy chicken and lentils stew

Healthy chicken and lentils stew

I was pondering over weekend, that my sweet spot of recipes is very Asian because I am one. And food that’s more on the healthy side than indulgent. Good for weight watchers and busy at work, again I am one of them too. Honestly I cook for myself and not just to post on the blog. It’s more like sharing what you are cooking for yourself. Given I try to choose healthier options of food instead of going on crash diets, I think I am able to create more recipes that are inline with my eating habits.

Anyway! So last week I made this real yummy stew which is protein packed. Chicken, vegetables and lentils cooked with creamy coconut milk. Good fat, protein, carbs come together in this hearty one pot meal which can be eaten just on its own or with a naan, roti, bread or even crumpets. So let’s dive in.

Ingredients

  • Chicken Breast 2 medium which will give 200-250gms of diced cubes or strips
  • 1 can of lentils; drained weight is usually 200-2350 gms. I chose brown lentils which have a great flavour. You can choose green or mixed lentils too. Suggest to use whole lentils not the mushy yellow or orange ones.
  • 1-2 small or medium carrots diced small
  • 1-2 stick of celery diced small
  • 1/2 can of coconut milk about 200 ml
  • 1 large onion finely diced
  • 2 large garlic cloves diced
  • 2-3 tbsp tomato puree or paste
  • 2 tsp mild curry powder
  • Bay leaves 1-2
  • Black peppercorns 6-8
  • Red chilli flakes (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Olive oil to cook about 2 tbsp
  • Lemon juice (optional)
  • Coriander/parsley to garnish
  • Few spoons of yogurt for garnish (optional)

Method

  • In a pan/wok heat olive oil and add bay leaves, peppercorns and chill flakes.
  • Then add the chopped onions and garlic. Fry till onions are translucent and pink.
  • Add chilli powder or paprika if you want some more heat. Add the curry powder. Add carrots and celery and cook for few minutes.
  • Now add the chicken and cook till it turns white and there are no pink bits left.
  • Now add 1 medium chopped tomato and 1-2 tbsp of tomato paste or puree. Add salt. Cook for sometime till raw smell of tomatoes is not there anymore. Add little water if it sticks or becomes too dry.
  • Once the tomatoes are well cooked, add the lentils and mix well. Now add coconut milk. Add warm water if the stew is too thick.
  • Cover the lid and keep it on low heat for 10-15 minutes. It will thicken. You can add water if you want it thinner.
  • Serve ladlefuls in a bowl garnished with coriander with yogurt. Squeeze some lime juice if you prefer.

Recipe variations : You can choose chickpeas, any kind of beans instead of lentils. For vegetarians, you can replace chicken with more vegetables like butternut squash or indian paneer. Also in the main dish you can omit carrots and celery if you don’t want vegetables. You can also add some more vegetables like spinach at the end which makes it more nutritious. Adapt the way you like it.

If you love stews, you will love my Moroccan Lamb stew with Sweet potato and Greek Youvetsi. Both are beautiful and easy recipes that saves time and makes hearty lean meals packed with flavour and nutrition

Hope you will try this and enjoy. Let me know how it turns out to be. Until next time, eat healthy.

 

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