Fancy a guilt-free Chinese?
If you are trying to eat healthier food or keep your weight steady, then the weekends can be a real problem. We all tend to want to treat ourselves after a week of hard work and, in many cases, we reward ourselves with food.
Often this results in a weekend takeaway, which can mean a lot of fatty, unhealthy food. But it doesn’t have to be this way!
With a bit of planning and minimal preparation, you can prepare great weekend food in your own kitchen that won’t derail your healthy lifestyle.
Here’s some great ideas for replacing the Chinese takeaway with tasty, home-cooked alternatives that can be enjoyed guilt-free. And they’ll all be ready in half an hour!
Weekend Chinese menu
Chinese Pork Ribs
12 meaty Pork Ribs
100ml Hoisin Sauce
2 tbsp Soy Sauce
1 tbsp clear Honey or Agave syrup
1 tbsp Vinegar (you can use cider, malt or wine)
1 tsp Chinese five-spice powder
Put the ribs in a large pan and cover with water. Bring to the boil and simmer for 15 mins.
Meanwhile, pour the hoisin sauce in a jug and stir in the soy sauce, honey, vinegar and five-spice.
Drain the ribs very well, then brush with the glaze – if barbequing, chill, cover and keep in the fridge for later.
Heat the grill / barbeque to high then cook for 15-20 mins, turning from time to time until shiny and slightly charred in places.
Sesame Noodles with Chicken
450g Egg Noodles
2 tablespoons Toasted Sesame Oil
1 clove Garlic, peeled
1 (1-inch) piece peeled fresh Ginger
1/2 cup smooth Peanut Butter
1/4 cup Soy Sauce
2 tablespoons dark brown Sugar
1 tablespoon Rice Vinegar
3/4 teaspoon crushed Red Pepper
1/4 cup hot water
1 Cucumber, halved and sliced
1 cup shredded cooked Chicken
6 Scallions (white and green parts), sliced
1/4 cup dry-roasted Peanuts, chopped
(Make the sauce while the noodles cook)
Bring a large pot of cold water to a boil over high heat.
When the water boils, salt it generously, add the noodles, and cook, stirring occasionally, until al dente.
Drain and rinse under cold running water.
Put the noodles in a large bowl and toss with the sesame oil.
For the Peanut Sauce:
In a blender, drop in the garlic and ginger while the motor is running.
When the chopping is complete, stop the machine and add the peanut butter, soy sauce, brown sugar, vinegar, and red pepper.
Process until smooth, then, with the blender running, slowly pour in the water.
To serve, toss the spaghetti with the Peanut Sauce, then top with the cucumber, chicken, scallions, and peanuts.
Bok Choi with Oyster Sauce & Chilli
2 tbsp Vegetable Oil
2 cloves Garlic, minced
6 heads Bok Choi, split in half lengthways, or 16 baby Bok Choi
3 tbsp Oyster Sauce
1 tbsp light Soy Sauce
1 long red Chilli, deseeded and finely sliced
Heat the oil in a wok, add the garlic and fry for 2 mins.
Tip in the bok choi and stir well over the heat for 4 mins until it wilts.
Pour in the oyster sauce, soy and 50ml water.
Simmer for a further 3 mins, then scatter over the chilli to serve.