Chicken, Bacon, Spinach & Mushroom Lasagna

Pieces of free-range chicken breast, outdoor reared smokey bacon, spinach from our allotment (with a little help from Sainsburys) and chestnut mushrooms, layered between sheets of lasagna and wrapped in a cheesey sauce. A bit more time required than the usual fast healthy food, but worth it for no cooking the next day! I made this on Sunday and enjoyed it again on Monday.

Serves 4 :: 60 mins prep :: 25 mins cook :: Lazy Leftovers :: 700 calories per portion

Ingredients

2 free-range, organic chicken breasts

6 rashers of outdoor reared, oragnic bacon (fat removed)

400g spinach

300g chestnut mushrooms

1 white onion

8 sheets of no pre-cook lasagna

1 tbsp olive oil

4 cloves of garlic (crushed)

1tsp rosemary

1tsp bay leaves

1tsp oregano

Black pepper

2 tbsp butter

2 tbsp flour

50g cheddar cheese

50g parmesan cheese

300 ml semi skimmed milk (or enough to make a sauce consistency)

Directions

1. Heat the oven to 200C degrees or equivalent.

2. Dice the onion, chop the chicken into small pieces, cube the bacon, slice the mushrooms and crush the garlic.

3. Heat the olive oil on a very low heat in a large pan and gently fry the onion for a few minutes, then add the garlic and chicken. Once the chicken is sealed add the bacon and mushrooms.

4. Meanwhile, use a pestle and mortar to grind black pepper, rosemary, bay leaves and oregano and add to the pan, stirring until the mushrooms are soft.

5. Wash the spinach and add to the pan, putting the lid on to help steam it and reduce it quickly. You may need to add it in two batches. Once cooked down turn off the heat under the pan. Don’t worry if you find you have a lot of juices in the bottom of the pan, use gravy granules to thicken the sauce or if you prefer drain off. You do want some juices as these will evaporate in the hot oven.

6. Add butter to another pan on a low heat and once melted, add the flour to make a roux. Add a little milk and stir until smooth, then repeat until you have a sauce consistency. Grate in a little cheddar, adjusting to taste and keep on a very low heat (stirring regularly), while you create your lasagna.

7. Take a lasagna dish and spread out half the chicken and mushroom mixture onto the bottom, then arrange the lasagna sheets, then half the cheese sauce. Repeat with a second layer, making sure all the lasagna sheets are covered with sauce (to help them cook) and finish with grated parmesan.

8. Put in the oven for 25 minutes until golden brown on top and serve.

Red Wine & Mushroom Chicken

Free-range chicken breast in a red wine and mushroom sauce served with parsley mash and green beans. This tasty little dinner can be rustled up in under half an hour and came into being as I had 1 leftover chicken breast (uncooked), but it could just as easily be made with cooked turkey leftovers. See my Foodwitch Factoid below for details.

Serves 2 :: ready in 30 mins :: 450 calories per serving :: one-off wonder

Red Wine & Mushroom Chicken

Red Wine & Mushroom Chicken

Ingredients
1 free-range chicken breast
1/2 red onion
4 flat mushrooms
400g brown lentils
2 tbsp flat leaf parsley
100 ml red wine
4 garlic cloves
2 tsp butter
2 tsp olive oil
1 tsp dried rosemary
30 ml semi skimmed milk
Black pepper
Sea salt
2 potatoes
200g green beans

Method:
1. Cut the potatoes into small pieces (leaving skins on) and bring to the boil in a large saucepan of water, then boil for 20-25 minutes until cooked.
2. Peel and chop the red onion. Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan on a medium heat and gently fry the red onion until soft.
3. Meanwhile, peel and crush the garlic cloves. Cut the chicken into small pieces.
4. When the onion is starting to soften add half the garlic and the chicken. Strirfry for 5 minutes until the chicken is sealed and starting to colour.
5. Slice the mushrooms and add them to the chicken together with 1 tsp butter, 1 tsp rosemary and the remaining garlic. Add a few generous twists of black pepper and fry until the mushrooms are soft. Add the wine and lentils, then simmer for a further 10 minutes (so the sauce reduces).
6. Cook the green beans and chop the flat leaf parsley.
7. Mash the potaoes, then add the milk, remaining butter, salt, pepper and parsley and mix together. Adjust to taste as necessary then serve.

Foodwitch Factoid
As this recipe only uses 1 free-range chicken breast between 2 servings, it’s great value for money and good if you find yourself with an extra portion of chicken after entertaining. You could also use cooked chicken or turkey (perfect turkey leftover recipe) – just skip stirfrying the chicken for 5 minutes and follow as above. The great thing about using this recipe with turkey leftovers is that the strong flavours of red wine, garlic and rosemary would work really well with the dark turkey meat as well as the breast meat.

You could also serve this recipe with rice instead of potatoes and green beans for about 50 calories less per portion.