Chicken in Sweet Pepper Sauce | Low Fat Recipe | Reflux Recipe

As a reflux* sufferer, I often use peppers as a tomato substitute, but they are so much more!

Peppers add a delicious sweetness and richness to many dishes, and this chicken in sweet pepper sauce is no exception.

This recipe makes lots and lots of sauce, that you can then re-use as a soup or as a base sauce for other dishes.  The chicken quantities below are for 4 people, but because it makes so much more sauce, you can just add more chicken thighs for more people.

chicken with sweet pepper sauce

Ingredients (for 4 generous portions)

  • 8 skinless boneless chicken thighs, all visible fat removed
  • 4 big cloves of garlic, finely chopped (leave the garlic out if this triggers your reflux – there are plenty of flavours to make up for the lack of garlic)
  • 2 medium onions, or one large onion, finely sliced (again, if onions trigger your reflux, do not add them)
  • 4-5 peppers (orange, yellow, red), cut into large, approx. 2cm squared, chunks
  • 2tbsp olive oil
  • 1tsp dried oregano
  • enough boiling water to just about cover all the contents of the pan (if the pan is small and deep, don’t try and cover the contents or the dish will be too watery) – aim for about 700ml
  • 1 chicken stock pot (or any good quality chicken stock cube)
  • optional: a few handfuls of black olives in brine (brine drained)
  • fine sea salt

Method

Remove all visible fat from the chicken, keeping the pieces whole.

Finely chop the garlic (if using), slice the onions (if using) and chop the peppers, keeping all the ingredients separate.

Heat the oil in a non-stick casserole dish, on a high heat.  Season each piece of chicken with a sprinkling of sea salt on both sides and brown in the hot oil.  If your casserole dish is quite narrow, you may have to do this in batches.  Remove the browned pieces from the casserole dish (they just need to be lightly browned, but don’t cook them at this stage).

Add the onions to juices and turn the heat down to medium-low.  Cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally, allowing them to soften and start turning translucent (but careful not to let them brown), then add the garlic, stir and cook for another minute.

Add the chicken pieces back in, then add the peppers, olives (if using), the oregano, the chicken stock pot (or cube) and the water and stir.

Turn the heat up and bring to the boil.  Cover with a lid and reduce the heat to a gentle simmer.  Cook for 45 minutes or until the chicken is cooked and almost falling apart and the peppers are very soft.

Carefully remove the chicken pieces (including any small pieces that may have broken off) and the olives.

Place the peppers and onions into a blender, with some of the juices, making sure your blender jug is heat proof.   When all the peppers and onions have been removed from the casserole dish, you can place the chicken and olives back in and cover with a lid, to keep warm.  If your blender isn’t very big, do this in batches to avoid spilling hot sauce!  As always, when blending hot liquids, leave the centre piece off the lid and cover with a folded tea towel, then start blending slowly at first. Blend thoroughly to a smooth consistency.

Place a sieve over your casserole dish and gradually pour the sauce through the sieve back into the juices, using a spoon to help you.  Towards the end, you should just be left with minimal pepper paste and the pepper skins, with all the silky pepper sauce having been sieved into the remaining juices.  Stir.

Serve with mashed potato, cous-cous, polenta or rice.

Any left-over sauce will make a great soup the next day!

Gloriously Low-Fat, Gloriously Reflux-Friendly, Gloriously Good!

*Please note I am not a doctor, speech therapist or in any way medically qualified.  The recipes are a combination of my interpretation of the rules outlined in the ‘Dropping Acid – The Reflux Diet’ book and ingredients that work for my reflux.  If you believe you suffer from reflux, please seek advice from a medical professional to confirm your diagnosis and work out the best course of treatment/management for you.  I hope that my recipes can help you as part of this management.  The recipes are, by their nature, very low in fat, so are also suitable for anyone wishing to follow a low-fat diet. 

No Tomato Bolognese | Reflux-friendly Bolognese | Low-Fat Bolognese

This sauce is an alternative to traditional bolognese sauce, using roasted sweet pepper sauce instead of tomatoes.

It is not only reflux*-friendly and low-fat, but so delicious, I think I might actually like it more than traditional bolognese sauce!!!

I am usually very critical of using garlic in a bolognese sauce – it should just be ‘soffritto’ (finely chopped carrots, celery and onions, fried off in olive oil), beef, tomatoes and salt.  And of course if, as a reflux sufferer, garlic affects you, then you can make the roasted sweet pepper sauce without garlic – simply roast the peppers with a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkling of fine sea salt (don’t use herbs as they’ll affect the taste of the bolognese sauce!).  But, if you can tolerate roasted garlic, then it’s well worth sticking to using it in the pepper sauce as it adds extra depth of flavour.

no tomato bolognese | reflux friendly bolognese | low-fat bolognese | bolognese with roasted sweet pepper sauce

Ingredients:

  • Roasted sweet pepper sauce (Make this in advance and refrigerate or freeze before using – this will make the cooking process for the sauce very quick! – and make it slightly runnier than usual, using approximately 200-250ml of chicken or vegetable stock when blending/’cleaning out’ the blender.  How much sauce you use in your bolognese will depend on how meaty or ‘saucy’ you like it – if you haven’t previously frozen the roasted pepper sauce, you can freeze any you don’t use.)
  • 500g lean minced beef (I use 5% fat minced beef)
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped (leave out the onion if this affects your reflux)
  • a sprinkling of sea salt
  • 1tbsp olive oil

Method: 

If you have already made the roasted sweet pepper sauce, the bolognese is very quick to make, so put on your pasta water (with a good handful of coarse sea salt and a drop of oil, of course) before you start.  Your sauce will be ready even before your pasta is cooked.

Place the finely-chopped onions in a non-stick sauté pan with the oil and cook on a medium heat for approximately 5 minutes, making sure the onions don’t brown – stir frequently and get them to the point where they are translucent and mostly cooked.  (Skip this step if your reflux prevents you from using onions)

Turn the heat up to high and add the minced meat with a sprinkling of salt.  Separate the meat as you brown it, making sure it doesn’t form big clumps.

Once the meat is browned, add enough roasted sweet pepper sauce to get the desired sauce consistency.  Turn the heat down and simmer for 5 minutes, until the sauce is piping hot and the meat is cooked through.

Serve with your pasta – cooked ‘al dente’, of course!

Gloriously simple, Gloriously Low-Fat, Gloriously Low-Cal, Gloriously Reflux-Friendly, Gloriously Good!

*Please note I am not a doctor, speech therapist or in any way medically qualified.  The recipes are a combination of my interpretation of the rules outlined in the ‘Dropping Acid – The Reflux Diet’ book and ingredients that work for my reflux.  If you believe you suffer from reflux, please seek advice from a medical professional to confirm your diagnosis and work out the best course of treatment/management for you.  I hope that my recipes can help you as part of this management.  The recipes are, by their nature, very low in fat, so are also suitable for anyone wishing to follow a low-fat diet. 

 

Roasted Courgette and Sweet Pepper Soup | Low Fat Courgette and Pepper Soup | Reflux Recipe

Roasted Courgette and Sweet Pepper Soup | Low-Fat Courgette and Pepper Soup | Reflux Recipe

I had the idea for this roasted courgette and sweet pepper soup when I made the roasted sweet pepper sauce.   This soup variation is delicious, rich, filling and low-fat, as well as reflux*-friendly.

Although it takes a little bit of time to make (not too much time), it is actually a very easy recipe.

If you are a reflux sufferer who does not tolerate garlic, simply leave it out of the recipe.  The soup will still taste delicious as the other ingredients pack a powerful flavour punch!   For those around your dinner table who do not suffer from reflux, this soup is delicious with the addition of a sprinkling of ground chilli flakes (these can be added to individual portions so everyone can have the soup as spicy – or not – as they wish).

Roasted Courgette and Sweet Pepper Soup | Low Fat Courgette and Pepper Soup | Reflux Recipe

Ingredients (for 8 generous portions as a main meal)

  • 10 peppers (mixture of red, orange and yellow – red and orange are tastier, in my opinion, than yellow, so I use more of those)
  • 8 large courgettes
  • 2 bulbs of garlic
  • 4tbsp olive oil
  • a generous sprinkling of dried oregano
  • sea salt
  • 1l chicken stock (or vegetable stock for a vegetarian / vegan alternative) – I use Knorr Chicken Stock Pots (2, dissolved in 1l boiling water)

Method

Pre-heat your oven to 220°C (fan).

Cut the courgettes into quarters lengthways, then cut each length into roughly 1.5cm pieces.  Place into a large roasting tin (you may need to spread these over two roasting tins, as there will be quite a lot to start with), drizzle 2tbsp olive oil over the top, add a light sprinkling of sea salt and a generous sprinkling of oregano (how much oregano you use depends on how much you like the taste).

De-seed and cut the peppers into large chunks.  Remove all the garlic cloves from their bulbs, removing any excess/loose ‘skin’, without peeling the garlic cloves.  Lightly squash the cloves, using the side of a large knife and pressure from the palm of your hand – enough to burst the skins a little and flatten the cloves a bit, but not enough to peel the cloves or break them up.  Place the peppers into a large roasting tin (or two, depending on the size of your tins!), drizzle 2tbsp olive oil over the top, add a light sprinkling of sea salt and a generous sprinkling of oregano (how much oregano you use depends on how much you like the taste).

Place your tins in the oven (you may need to do this in stages if you can’t fit them all in at once).  Roast for approximately 40 minutes, mixing halfway through cooking.  You are aiming for the vegetables to be very well cooked and soft, with blackened bits, and for the garlic cloves to have gone very soft.

Put the roasted courgettes (and any remaining roasting juices) into a blender, add just a little bit of chicken stock (enough to aid the blending process) and blend to desired consistency (I like to leave a little bit of courgette texture so I don’t blend it to a completely smooth consistency, but almost).  Transfer the resulting purée into a large pan / stockpot.

Tip: If you are doing this while it is still hot, ensure the jug on your blender is heat proof, that the jug is not over-full (do in batches if needed) and that the removable centre section of the lid is removed.  Before you start blending, place the lid (with the hole in the top) firmly on the jug, then loosely hold a tea towel folded into a square over the hole.  Doing this will ensure that steam can escape and that your hot sauce doesn’t burst out of the blender.

Repeat the process with the peppers and garlic, including skins.  Do not pour the blended peppers directly into the blended courgettes, but pour them into a fine sieve resting above the courgette ‘soup’.  Do this in small batches and, using a spoon, stir the sauce so that it can go through the sieve, leaving behind only the tiny pieces of garlic and pepper skins. Keep doing this until you have sieved the entire contents of the blender and you cannot push any more pulp through the sieve. Use the rest of the chicken or vegetable stock stock to ‘wash out’ the blender jug and get every drop of this delicious roasted sweet pepper purée into your bowl.

Stir the courgette and pepper purées well to ensure they are completely mixed together.  Taste and, if required, adjust seasoning by adding salt.  The roasted courgette and sweet pepper soup will be quite thick, so you can add additional stock to make it runnier, if you prefer.

You can make this in advance and then re-heat it in a pan.  Serve hot with delicious fresh bread of your choice!

Any leftovers (if there are any!) can be refrigerated or frozen to be eaten another day in its soup form or used as a sauce for pasta, fish, and meat.

Gloriously Simple, Gloriously Low Fat, Gloriously Reflux-Friendly, Gloriously Good!

*Please note I am not a doctor, speech therapist or in any way medically qualified.  The recipes are a combination of my interpretation of the rules outlined in the ‘Dropping Acid – The Reflux Diet’ book and ingredients that work for my reflux.  If you believe you suffer from reflux, please seek advice from a medical professional to confirm your diagnosis and work out the best course of treatment/management for you.  I hope that my recipes can help you as part of this management.  The recipes are, by their nature, very low in fat, so are also suitable for anyone wishing to follow a low-fat diet.