Month: January 2015

Quick Cook Lunch Recipe – Tuna Fish in Tomato sauce with Rice

Move over Jamie OliTuna Fish in Tomato Sauce Cookingver. There’s a new guy in town and he can rustle up a random yet tasty meal for lunch/ dinner in under 20 minutes.

They say that Necessity is the mother of all invention. It certainly was today. I was forced to be creative when making my lunch as I forgot to defrost the Turkey Breast quick cook steaks I usually have. It was actually a blessing in disguise as I am perpetually bored of eating the very same thing for lunch every single day.

I am currently on an exclusion diet as part of my effort to overcome and conquer my debilitating Irritable Bowel Syndrome – Diarrhoea (IBS-D). I was diagnosed with Lactose intolerance over 9 years ago and have been on a dairy free diet ever since, but I still suffer the ill effects of IBS-D on a daily basis. I have been on various exclusion diets and diet regimes before, all to no avail.

However, I persevered in my quest to eliminate any possible foods that may be continuing to inflame or cause my IBS-D and that is how I discovered the magic of cooking with coconut oil as a substitute for vegetable or seed oils (such as vegetable oil, corn oil, sunflower oil and rapeseed oil). Using only coconut oil to cook the food I eat has really helped reduce my IBS-D symptoms and has also had the side effect of helping me lose over 1 1/2 stone of weight.KTC_Coconut_oil I still need to do more research around coconut oil as there seem to be many health benefits but it is also high in saturated fat, which increases cholesterol in the body, which can lead to heart attacks! I try not to use too much though.

So this is the place I started from this afternoon, when I realised I had the choice between eating a sandwich which would make me ill or trying to conjure up a suitable Free From lunch. I am currently excluding all dairy, wheat, gluten, high fibre (onions, mushrooms, spinach, all nuts, the skins and seeds of all vegetables and fruits such as potatoes, tomatoes, courgettes/ zucchini, cucumbers) and vegetable/ seed oil ingredients from my diet. I am only using coconut oil to cook with, although I can still use salt, pepper, ground coriander, ground paprika and ginger in my meals, but not garlic or any chilli power!

Having so many restrictions on what I can eat and cook with is very limiting, but it forces you to be creative. All I had in my kitchen was some Tuna Fish cans (in spring water as opposed to sunflower oil – the tuna in sunflower oil cans used to inflame my IBS-D a lot, because of the oil), rice, tomato passata, dried herbs, salt, ground pepper, ground coriander, ground paprika and a jar of ginger paste. This is what i came up with. My low fibre, dairy free, wheat free, vegetable/ seed oil free, IBS friendly Tuna Fish in Tomato sauce with rice quick cook lunch.

Ingredients:

  • 1 can of Tuna Fish in Spring Water
  • 250g Tomato Passata (no skins or seeds)
  • 1 tablespoon of Coconut Oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon of Salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon of ground pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon of ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon of ground paprika
  • 1 teaspoon of garlic paste
  • 1 tablespoon of dried mixed herbs
  • 1 tablespoon of dried basil
  • 1/2 carrot – peeled
  • 1/2 courgette – peeled
  • 160g of cooked basmati rice

Serves: 1 or 2 people depending on hunger!

Time to cook: Less than 20 minutes. The rice takes 16 minutes to cook in our 1000 watt microwave. The actual Tuna in Tomato sauce takes only 10-13 minutes to cook, depending on how hard or soft you like your vegetables. A low fibre diet recommends cooking vegetables thoroughly and not eating raw vegetables.

Instructions:

  • Make the rice. I just made the rice in the way I usually do, which is to put 1 cup of dried rice into a corning-ware dish, wash the rice to remove the starch, add 2 cups of water, then microwave the rice for 8 minutes uncovered on medium power, then put a microwave cover over the corning-ware dish and heat for another 8 minutes on medium power. This cooks enough rice for 4 people. You can just cook the rice as you usually do or even substitute in Gluten Free Pasta (if you want the recipe to be wheat and gluten free). I don’t use ready-made Microwave rice such as Uncle Ben’s (the one’s that cook in just 2 minutes) as they have sunflower oil in them.
  • While the rice is cooking in the microwave:
    • Peel the carrot and cut it into small chunks and put it to one side.
    • Peel the courgette and cut that into small pieces and put with the carrot pieces.
    • Turn on the hob, to medium heat, and put the saucepan on it. It needs to be a little bit hot for the coconut oil (which is solid in the jar) to melt.
    • Put the 1 tbsp of Coconut oil, the salt, pepper, coriander, paprika, and ginger paste into the saucepan and mix together.
    • After about 30 seconds add the Tuna Fish (drained of it’s spring water form the can) into the saucepan. Stir the oil/ spice mix and tuna together.
    • After another 30 seconds add the cut up pieces of carrot and courgette to the tuna fish and pieces mix in the saucepan.
    • After 1 minute add the Tomato passata to the saucepan and stir all the ingredients together.
    • Let the mix fry for about another 1 minute.
    • Then turn down the heat to low so that the sauce in the pan is just simmering.
    • Add the Dried mixed herbs and dried basil to the sauce and stir in.
    • Cover the saucepan and let the sauce cook on low heat for around 10-13 minutes.
    • After the Tuna Tomato sauce has cooked you can just add it to the cooked rice and you have what is hopefully a tasty Free From lunch full of proteins and carbs that is suitable for people with Lactose, Wheat an gluten intolerances or people on Low Fibre or other exclusion diets.

This is what the finished meal should look like. Apologies for the photo being very basic and lacking style, it was a quick smart phone moment.

 

Free From Tuna Tomato Rice

Free From Tuna Tomato Rice

 

 

 

 

New Year Update and Parenting a 6 year Old Tip of the Day – 16th January 2015

This is my 1st post of 2015! Happy New Year Everyone.

It has been a while since my last post so there may not be anyone out there. If there is then let me thank you for reading and let me assure you that there are many more posts on the way.

Before the Tips – What’s new in Kam’s world?

My wife gave birth to our second daughter 3 1/2 weeks ago so I have been composing a post with lots of tips for parents of newborn babies. We need all the help we can get and I thought it would be great to share the few tips we have discovered and uncovered beneath the pile of milk soaked muslin cloths.

Amongst all the chaos of dealing with the 2 kids, the hurricane of tea drinking visitors wishing to share the joy of our newborn with us, Christmas, and my sister having a baby just 2 weeks after our second daughter was born, I somehow managed to watch the Doctor Who Christmas Special “Last Christmas” last week. I have also finished reading the Christmas edition of Doctor Who Magazine and I watched 2 classic Doctor Who serials (spoiler alert – Colony in Space is brilliant) between rocking my baby daughter to sleep and failing to be of any use when it came to helping my 6 year old daughter with her maths homework. I am working on Doctor Who blog posts in addition to the parenting ones too.

I also discovered the magic of cooking with coconut oil over the last few months, which has really helped calm down my IBS-D and as a side effect helped me lose over 1 stone of weight. Blog posts on this subject to follow.

The Tips – Space Books

Anyway, back to the theme of this short post. I will endeavour to post a useful tip related to the subjects I blog about here at Kamblog. Today’s tip is a Parenting one related to the love of science fact (as opposed to science fiction) that my fiction-hating 6 3/4 year old daughter has developed recently. My daughter refused to read or be read any fiction books with the exception of Mr.Men or Little Miss books, but she adores all things space themed.

These 2 books have been the most fun to read with her and are the best in terms of the right level of detail and ease of understanding.

See Inside Space – Usborne Flap Book

Official Link | Link on Amazon.co.uk

See Inside Space Usborne Flap Book

See Inside Space Usborne Flap Book

This is by far the best book about Space for kids that we have at home.

The Usborne See Inside Flap Book series, which covers lots of different subjects such as the Human Body, Castles, History, Nature and more, is a must for every parent of a children in Primary/ Elementary school.

This book, like all the other flap books, is full of useful information that even the adult readers will find informative. It is written in a really accessible, fun and humorous way that appeals to my daughter. She has now started to open the flaps and read the facts to me. This Book on Space is also full of facts about the Big Bang and the history of man’s fascination with space and space exploration. I find it’s open and honest style refreshing. For example on the Big Bang page it asks the reader How Do We Know and Who actually saw the Big Bang and is not afraid to tell us Nobody saw it and we really aren’t sure why it happened! Letting kids understand that science hasn’t answered every question we have and that’s OK is so empowering.

The illustrations are visually striking and although there is a lot of information in this book, the way it is presented is so clever that you and your child don’t feel bogged down or bored reading it.

If you only ever get one book about Space then this is the one I recommend. It’s has proven a useful aid to this science-fiction loving father when I watch Doctor Who and need to refresh my memory about certain space related facts. If my daughter can get over her dislike of fiction then hopefully this book will sow the seeds of curiosity and a fascination with space and time that might make her a Whovian one day (one can hope!)

National Geographic Little Kids First Big Book of Space

Official Link | Link on Amazon.co.uk

Little Kids First Big Book of SpaceThis book is clear, colourful, and up to date with modern space facts (many libraries still have books where Pluto is one of the “9 Planets in the Solar System”) such as Pluto being classified as a Dwarf Planet these days. My daughter loves it and we keep re-reading it, which is helpful as it tells you the correct way of pronouncing Dwarf Planets Ceres and Makemake, so I no longer embarrass myself as the amateur science geek that I in fact am. I highly recommend it. National Geographic also have a great Space themed sticker book that my sticker loving daughter can’t get enough of.

 

Bonus Tip – This is an activity book rather than a straight-forward fact book but it’s great nonetheless.

Super Space Sticker Activity Book (National Geographic Kids)

Official Link | Link on Amazon.co.uk

Kids Super Space Sticker Book (National Geographic)

Kids Super Space Sticker Book (National Geographic)

 

My daughter loves sticker books and this is great because in addition to stickers of stars, planets, aliens and more it also has drawing activities, maze, pattern and spelling games.

 

 

 

 

I hope that you found these Space Book recommendations useful and that you enjoyed the 1st post of a new year. With so much going on in the life of Kam I certainly have much more to blog about and share with the cybersphere.