Sunday, 22 April 2012

Roasted Skinny

There are some things in this life I am happy to compromise on and some I am not. Since having children I have scaled down my make up purchases for example, both brands and quantity. I still like quality though so shopping around is key, and one area I am super picky is my cooking. I don't like using processed foods for the most part and would rather not make certain things than do them badly or compromise on my way. Pigheaded, maybe, but it's the way I am.

Take a traditional Sunday roast for example. It certainly is possible to cook a Roast and make it low syn, but it really is an area I don't like to budge on. My way of dealing with this is to cook it "properly", but rarely - in the 12 weeks I have been doing SW I have had two roasts. Both with my mum and dad - to be honest were it just me I might not have bothered at all but when we get together with my family it's the family meal my mum most enjoys.

A roast for me contains the main event joint (obviously), minimum two veg (usually steamed broccoli and carrots chez Bee), roast potatoes, creamy mashed potatoes, Yorkshire puddings and lashings of thick gravy (made with the meat juices).

As long as you don't add fat to the joint the meat is free. So far so good. See also the veg - that's a no-brainer, presuming of course you don't toss your freshly steamed veg in melted butter that is. Again the roast potatoes are manageable - using frylight instead of oil or lard you will still get lovely crisp potatoes. I do think plenty of seasoning is needed though when using frylight because what is does lack is taste.

It gets more difficult now.

I like my mash creamy and smooth with plenty of butter and salt. Yorkshire puddings are full of flour and milk and cooked in fat (frylight won't do here). Gravy is not the same without the meat juices and gravy granules for me are a no-go. It's worth pointing put that these aren't things we ate a lot before anyway so not having them weekly is no major problem. These are all high syn ingredients and i would rather not have mash than use smash, or ready made Yorkies. I'm not saying there is anything wrong with using these ready mades, but it's not my way.

This afternoon I served a roast chicken, cooked with the cavity stuffed with half a lemon, half a dozen garlic cloves and a small bunch of thyme. The skin is off limits (apart from a little nibble) so frylight and a bit of seasoning sealed the deal there. I served it up as a gravy free spring/summer roast, alongside baby potatoes roasted with garlic and frylight, and a large side salad of mixed leaves, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, red pepper, feta cheese (my healthy extra for the day) and dressed with a red pepper a chilli fat free dressing with pickles on the side. Definitely a win for us, and sure to continue being a family favourite.

Ps the wine was Banrock Station Light. Slightly sweeter than my usual taste but slightly skinnier too.

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