California ‘Fried’ Chicken Sandwich – Gordon Ramsay’s Ultimate Fit Food

Ultimate Fit Food

Gordon Ramsay’s Ultimate Fit Food ($39.99), published by Hachette Australia.

Photographer Jamie Orlando Smith

 

 

California ‘fried’ chicken sandwich

SERVES 4

As a family with four teenage children, we are always looking for healthy ways of preparing not-so-healthy fast food favourites like pizza, burgers and fried chicken. This recipe is brilliant because it looks and tastes like a fried chicken sandwich, with the satisfying crunch from the chicken and the creaminess of the mayo, but is actually made with baked chicken and a yoghurt dressing. The kids love it, we know they’re eating well and everyone’s happy.” p. 224

50g wholemeal flour
200ml buttermilk (or 2 eggs, beaten)
150g puffed rice
2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp onion powder or granules
4 tsp paprika
1 tsp dried sage
8 mini chicken breast fillets
4 wholemeal buns
1 ripe avocado, peeled, stoned and sliced
½ iceberg lettuce, shredded
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Mexican hot sauce such as Cholula (optional), to serve

FOR THE YOGHURT DRESSING

75ml Greek yoghurt
½ garlic clove, crushed
1 tsp cider vinegar

California "fried" chicken sandwich

 

  1. Preheat the oven to 180˚C/gas 4.
  2. Put the flour, buttermilk and puffed rice into three shallow bowls. Season the flour with salt and pepper. Add the garlic powder, onion powder, paprika and dried sage to the buttermilk and mix well. Crush the puffed rice with your hands so that the pieces are broken down slightly but not powdered.
  3. Dip a piece of chicken into the flour so that it is completely covered. Remove and shake off any excess, then dip into the buttermilk. Allow any excess buttermilk to drip off, then put the chicken pieces into the puffed rice. Turn over to make sure they are completely coated, then place on a baking tray. Repeat with the remaining chicken pieces.
  4. Put the tray into the preheated oven and bake for 25–30 minutes, until golden and cooked through, turning halfway through cooking.
  5. Meanwhile, make the yoghurt dressing; mix together the yoghurt, crushed garlic and vinegar with a little salt and pepper. Taste and add more vinegar if needed.
  6. Slice open the buns and divide the avocado slices between them. Top with shredded iceberg lettuce.
  7. Once the chicken is cooked, place on top of the lettuce and spoon over dollops of the yoghurt dressing, as well as a drizzle of hot sauce, if desired. Close the buns and serve immediately.

PER SERVING

KCAL 510

FAT (g) 13.0

SATURATES (g) 4.0

CARBS (g) 67.0

SUGARS (g) 10.0

FIBRE (g) 8.0

PROTEIN (g) 27.0

SALT (g) 1.30

 

 

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Frozen Berry Breakfast Bowl – Gordon Ramsay’s Ultimate Fit Food

Ultimate Fit Food

Gordon Ramsay’s Ultimate Fit Food ($39.99), published by Hachette Australia.


Photographer Jamie Orlando Smith

 

 

FROZEN BERRY BREAKFAST BOWL

SERVES 4

The ladies in my life love a bowl of berries like this in the morning. I think it’s because it tastes a lot like ice cream! Acai berries are one of the latest superfoods to reach our shores from South America and, among the many wondrous claims made of them, they are said to boost energy levels. So, no more excuses for staying in bed . . .” p. 196

Frozen Berry Breakfast Bowl

6 tbsp acai juice or 4 tbsp acai powder
300g frozen berries, such as blueberries, raspberries, strawberries or mixed berries
4 bananas, peeled, broken into pieces and frozen for at least 2 hours
Water, coconut water or apple juice, if needed
1 fresh banana
4 small handfuls of granola
2 handfuls of fresh blueberries

  1. Put the acai juice or powder, frozen berries and frozen bananas into a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. If the mixture looks like it needs some help blending, add a small amount of liquid, a little at a time, to get it going. The mixture should blend to a soft-serve ice cream consistency rather than a smoothie consistency.
  2. Transfer to serving bowls and top with sliced fresh banana, granola and fresh blueberries. Serve immediately, before it starts to melt!

TO MAKE IT LEAN

Leave out the acai juice or powder and replace it with an extra 100g of frozen berries if you’re watching your weight.

PER SERVING

KCAL 332

FAT (g) 12.0

SATURATES (g) 4.0

CARBS (g) 43.0

SUGARS (g) 33.0

FIBRE (g) 10.0

PROTEIN (g) 7.0

SALT (g) 0.04

 

Post Script: Gordon Ramsay’s Ultimate Fit Food – Mouth Watering Recipes to Fuel You For Life.

Ultimate Fit Food

Gordon Ramsay’s Ultimate Fit Food:

Mouth-watering recipes to fuel you for life

Gordon Ramsay

Hachette Australia

Hodder and Stoughton

ISBN: 9781473652279

 

Description:

The definitive cookbook for eating well to achieve optimum health and fitness, by one of the world’s finest chefs and fitness fanatic, Gordon Ramsay.

The dream combination – a Michelin-starred super chef who is also a committed athlete. Gordon knows how important it is to eat well, whether you’re training for a triathlon or just leading a busy active life. And just because it’s healthy food you don’t have to compromise on taste and flavour.

The book is divided into three sections, each one offering breakfasts, lunches, suppers, sides and snacks with different health-boosting benefits. The Healthy section consists of nourishing recipes for general wellbeing; the Lean recipes encourage healthy weight loss; and the Fit section features pre- and post-workout dishes to build strength and energise.

This is the ultimate collection of recipes that you’ll enjoy cooking and eating, and will leave you in great shape whatever your fitness goals.

 

My View:

In the words of Gordon Ramsay (p13) …this is not a diet book telling you what (and what not) to eat, nor is it full of faddy ideas about eating cabbage soup or living off grapefruits or eating like a caveman. It works on the very simple premise that what you put into your body makes a difference to how it functions.  It also acknowledges that the body has different requirements depending on what you are expecting it to do.”  Greta advice from an award winning chef turned ultramarathon runner, Gordon Ramsay.

 

Tasty recipes, I particularly like the section on “Nourishing breakfasts” which includes chia puddings, apple spiced porridge, toasted oat soda bread, frittata…and the “Boosting breakfasts” which include breakfasts shakes, frozen berry breakfast bowls, huevos rancheros ( a favourite of mine).  These are easy to make, quick, fresh and delicious.

 

I am sure there is something that will appeal to all tastes and needs in this book.

 

 

 

 

Post Script: The Wanted – Robert Crais

The Wanted

The Wanted

Elvis Cole #17

Robert Crais

Simon & Schuster

ISBN: 9781471157509

 

Description:

It seemed like a simple case before the bodies starting piling up. Investigator Elvis Cole and his partner, Joe Pike, take on the deadliest case of their lives, in the new masterpiece of suspense from the #1 New York Times bestselling author.

 

When single mother Devon Connor hires private investigator Elvis Cole, it’s because her troubled teenage son Tyson is flashing cash and she’s afraid he’s dealing drugs. But the truth is devastatingly different. With two other partners in crime, he’s been responsible for a string of high-end burglaries, a crime spree that takes a deadly turn when one of them is murdered and Tyson and his girlfriend disappear.

 

They stole the wrong thing from the wrong man. Determined to get it back, he has hired a team that is smart and brutal, and to even the odds, Cole calls in his friends Joe Pike and Jon Stone. But even they may be overmatched. The hired killers are leaving a trail of bodies in their wake. A few more won’t make any difference.

 

 

My View:

Elvis Cole #17!!! How is it that I have only just been introduced to Robert Crais? Pleased to meet you by the way Robert.

 

Despite being book 17 in this series it was easy to read this as a standalone, but you won’t want to do that such is the calibre of the writing, the realistic characterisations, the dialogue – witty, a little self-deprecating at time. Robert are you sure you are not really an Australian? You share our trade mark sense of humour.

 

The plot is twisty and fast paced, the villains are ice cold mercenaries, and our heroes are…everything you could possibly want…

 

If I had to use one word to describe this read I would loudly proclaim SATISFYING!!!!  Now to find the first sixteen books in the Elvis Cole series.

There is nothing better than discovering a fantastic new to you author unless it is the discovery of said author’s backlist to feast on.

 

Guest Review – Wolfsangel – Liza Perrat

 

Wolfsangel

Wolfsangel

Liza Perrat

Perrat Publishing

ISBN: 9782954168128

Description:

Seven decades after German troops march into her village, Céleste Roussel is still unable to assuage her guilt.

  1. German soldiers occupy provincial Lucie-sur-Vionne, and as the villagers pursue treacherous schemes to deceive and swindle the enemy, Céleste embarks on her own perilous mission as her passion for a Reich officer flourishes.

When her loved ones are deported to concentration camps, Céleste is drawn into the vortex of this monumental conflict, and the adventure and danger of French Resistance collaboration.

As she confronts the harrowing truths of the Second World War’s darkest years, Céleste is forced to choose: pursue her love for the German officer, or answer General de Gaulle’s call to fight for France.

Her fate suspended on the fraying thread of her will, Celeste gains strength from the angel talisman bequeathed to her through her lineage of healer kinswomen. But the decision she makes will shadow the remainder of her days.

A woman’s unforgettable journey to help liberate Occupied France, Wolfsangel is a stirring portrayal of the courage and resilience of the human mind, body and spirit.

 

Brenda’s Review:

The happiness that Céleste Roussel had taken for granted with her family on their farm had disappeared with the occupation of their small village of Lucie-sur-Vionne by German soldiers. Her father had been taken to a labour camp early in the occupation, so running the farm was left to Céleste, her mother and brother Patrick. He and his best friend Olivier quickly became part of the French Resistance, doing all they could to drive the Boche from their lives.

Céleste soon took the eye of a certain German officer, and found her feelings reciprocated. She knew it was wrong – the hatred felt toward the Boche was in them all. Her determination to assist the Resistance saw her embark on dangerous missions; all the while keeping her secret life hidden from all but a few. But the arrest and deportation of family members was the beginning of the end. Would the angel talisman which had been with generations of her family’s women, and now belonged to Céleste keep her safe? Would she ever see her family again?

Wolfsangel by Aussie author Liza Perrat is absolutely outstanding! The second in the Bone Angel series, nevertheless it can be read as a standalone. The Author’s Note at the end of the book was extremely interesting and shows, though it is complete fiction, Wolfsangel is based on a factual event which occurred on 10th June 1944. I didn’t think I could hear of more shocking atrocities committed by the Germans in WWII, but it seems I now have! Brilliantly written, and highly recommended. A 5 star read which will be in my top reads for 2018.

Post Script: Anatomy of a Scandal – Sarah Vaughan

Anatomy of a Scandal=Entitlement exposed.


Anatomy of a Scandal

Anatomy of a Scandal

Sarah Vaughan

Simon & Schuster

ISBN: 9781471164996

 

Description:

You want to believe your husband. She wants to destroy him.

Gripping psychological drama for fans of Apple Tree Yard, The Good Wife and Notes on a Scandal.

 

Anatomy of a Scandal centres on a high-profile marriage that begins to unravel when the husband is accused of a terrible crime. Sophie is sure her husband, James, is innocent and desperately hopes to protect her precious family from the lies which might ruin them. Kate is the barrister who will prosecute the case – she is equally certain that James is guilty and determined he will pay for his crimes.

 

A high-profile marriage thrust into the spotlight. A wife, determined to keep her family safe, must face a prosecutor who believes justice has been a long time coming. A scandal that will rock Westminster. And the women caught at the heart of it.

 

 

My View:

Anatomy of a Scandal=Entitlement exposed.

Privilege, entitlement, the boys club, he said she said…such a relevant narrative that explores themes that fill our news feeds, make headlines and fill our courts. Who do you believe? For me that answer is simple.  As I started reading this book I experienced a niggling prickling of my #metoo conscience, you know that little voice that says “ look out, take care, give a wide berth…be aware, don’t relax too much, danger, danger.” I felt the possessiveness, the strong sense of entitlement, the threat that emanated and vibrated on the pages; the tension, apprehension, a subtle soundtrack as I read on. How did this narrative make you feel?  Enough said – you must read this yourself and come to your own conclusion.

 

This is an extremely well- constructed, topical narrative that is simultaneously a court room drama and a slow burning suspense told from multiple point of views and time lines. A great read, a timely read.

 

 

 

 

This is an extremely well written, topical, contemporary narrative that is simultaneously a court room drama and a slow burning suspense told from multiple point of views and time lines. A great read, a timely read.

 

 

 

Guest Review: The Last Train – Sue Lawrence

The Last Train

The Last Train

Sue Lawrence

Allen & Unwin

ISBN: 9781760630867

 

Description:

At 7 p.m. on 28 December 1879, a violent storm batters the newly built iron rail bridge across the River Tay, close to the city of Dundee. Ann Craig is waiting for her husband, the owner of the largest local mill, to return home. From her window Ann sees a strange and terrible sight as the bridge collapses, and the lights of the train in which he is travelling plough down into the freezing river waters.

As Ann manages the grief and expectations of family and friends, amid a town mourning its loved ones, doubt is cast on whether Robert was on the train, after all. If not, where is he, and who is the mysterious woman who is first to be washed ashore?

In 2015, Fiona Craig wakes to find that her partner Pete, an Australian restaurateur, has cleared the couple’s bank account before abandoning his car at the local airport and disappearing. When the police discover his car is stolen, Fiona conducts her own investigation into Pete’s background, slowly uncovering dark secrets and strange parallels with the events of 1879.

 

Brenda’s Review:

What an outstanding opening! Ann Craig and her two children, Lizzie and James, were watching the storm through the window of their home in Dundee. They were also watching for husband and father, Robert Craig’s train to arrive – due at 7pm it would travel over the River Tay on the newly built rail bridge. The storm was a vicious, violent one – the lights of the train showed its imminent arrival, when suddenly those lights dipped and vanished as the bridge collapsed…

28th December 1879 was the night of the disaster on the River Tay, when many lives were lost. Ann and her children were steeped in grief, along with the whole town – trying to come to terms with the enormity of the catastrophe encompassed them all.

2015 and Fiona Craig was shocked to discover her partner of three years had disappeared; clearing out her savings account and abandoning his car at the airport. Pete was an Australian restaurateur and it seemed the upcoming review of his restaurant had spooked him. But why? Fiona had no idea – and her son Jamie was devastated by Pete’s disappearance.

As Fiona searched for answers about Pete, she also began an investigation into the accident over the River Tay all those years before. Her interest was initially for her job but gradually she was immersed in the past. What was the connection to her family? It seemed there were secrets everywhere…

The Last Train by Sue Lawrence is an excellent read! I thoroughly enjoyed it – set in two-time frames and told by Ann in 1879 and Fiona in 2015, I was totally engrossed. Subterfuge, intrigue, mystery and deceit – all rippled through The Last Train. Ann wasn’t a nice person! But she loved her children 😊 Highly recommended – a 5 star read.

With thanks to Allen & Unwin for my hardcopy to read and review.