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Celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay shares 2 healthy recipes that deliver on flavor


You may know the fiery Gordon Ramsay from his reality TV cooking show, “Hell’s Kitchen,” where he turns up the heat on contestants.

Off camera, he’s a fitness fanatic and health-conscious eater and now he’s sharing a collection of his healthy recipes that don’t compromise on flavor in his new cookbook, “Healthy Lean & Fit.”

Home cooks Shannon Odom and Loc Vu were selected to prepare two of Ramsay’s dishes in front of the star chef. After tasting them side by side, Ramsay chose Odom’s take on his “fried” chicken sandwich as the winning dish.

He also presented her with a trip to Las Vegas where she will visit two of the Michellin-starred chef’s restaurants.

Ramsay believes eating well is important, whether it’s for training or just trying to live healthier.

Grand Central Life & Style
Gordon Ramsay’s cookbook “Healthy Lean & Fit: Mouth-watering Recipes to Fuel You for Life.”

His cookbook collects 108 recipes which take different health-boosting benefits into account from nourishment and weight loss to pre- and post-workout dishes that build strength and energy.

His “fried” chicken sandwich, for example, delivers all the taste of a not-so-healthy food with better-for-you ingredients like baked chicken with a nice crunch and Greek yogurt for a creamy dressing.

Californian fried chicken sandwich

PHOTO: Gordon Ramsays Californian fried chicken sandwich.Grand Central Life & Style
Gordon Ramsay’s Californian fried chicken sandwich.

Ingredients:
1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
1 cup buttermilk (or 2 eggs, beaten)
8 cups puffed rice
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons onion powder or granulated onion
4 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon dried sage
8 mini chicken breast fillets
4 whole-wheat buns
1 ripe avocado, peeled, pitted, and sliced
½ head iceberg lettuce, shredded
Mexican hot sauce, such as Cholula (optional), to serve

Yogurt dressing:
1/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/2 garlic clove, crushed
1 teaspoon cider vinegar
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

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.

Dip a piece of chicken into the flour so 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 sheet. Repeat with the remaining chicken pieces.

Put the sheet into the oven and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until the chicken is golden and cooked through, turning halfway through cooking.

Meanwhile, make the yogurt dressing: Mix together the yogurt, crushed garlic, and vinegar with a little salt and pepper. Taste and add more vinegar if needed.

Slice open the buns and divide the avocado slices among them. Top with the shredded iceberg lettuce.

Once the chicken is cooked, place on top of the lettuce and spoon over dollops of the yogurt dressing, as well as a drizzle of hot sauce, if desired. Close the buns and serve immediately.

Barbecued spatchcocked Cornish game hens with roasted corn salsa

PHOTO: Gordon Ramsays barbecued spatchcocked Cornish game hens with roasted corn salsa.Grand Central Life & Style
Gordon Ramsay’s barbecued spatchcocked Cornish game hens with roasted corn salsa.

For the marinade:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small onion, peeled and finely diced
Sea salt
2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
2 tablespoons tomato puree
2 tablespoons maple syrup
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1/2 to 1 tablespoon soy sauce, to taste


How to spatchcock a bird:
To spatchcock a cornish game hen, turn it breast side down with the legs toward you and, using sturdy kitchen scissors, cut along either side of the backbone and remove it. Open the bird out and turn it over so you can flatten it with your hand.

For the hens and the salad:
4 Cornish game hens, spatchcocked
4 ears corn on the cob, husks removed
Juice of 1 lime
1 1/2 teaspoons chipotle paste
1 tablespoon maple syrup
2 tablespoons olive oil
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 red pepper, seeded and diced
1 small red onion, peeled and finely diced
3 to 4 cilantro sprigs, stems chopped, leaves reserved
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, adzuki beans, or pinto beans, drained and rinsed

Instructions:

To make the marinade, place a small saucepan over medium heat and add the olive oil. Once hot, sauté the onion with a pinch of salt for five minutes, or until softened.

Add the garlic and continue to cook for one minute, then add the remaining marinade ingredients. Stir well and simmer gently for five to six minutes. Taste and adjust the seasoning as necessary, adding more soy sauce for a more savory flavor. Leave to cool.

When the marinade has cooled down, put the Cornish game hens into a container and pour over the marinade. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and put it into the fridge for at least an hour, or up to 2 days.

When ready to cook, light the grill or preheat the oven to 350 degrees and remove the birds from the fridge to let them come to room temperature.

To barbecue, when the coals are medium-hot, put the birds on the grill for 20 minutes, or until cooked through, turning after 10 minutes.

To oven-cook, put the marinated hens on a roasting sheet, breast side up, and into the oven. Roast for 30 to 35 minutes, until cooked through, basting occasionally. (If the extremities of the birds look like they might burn, cover with a piece of aluminum foil for the remainder of the cooking time.)

Meanwhile, heat a grill pan or grill until very hot and cook the corn on all sides until lightly charred. This will take 7 to 10 minutes. (To barbecue the corn, place the cobs on the grill before the chicken while the coals are still very hot.)

While the corn is cooking, put the lime juice, chipotle paste, maple syrup, olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper into a jar with a tight-fitting lid and shake until combined.

Remove the kernels from the cobs by placing the cobs on their ends on a cutting board and running a sharp knife along the cobs. Put the kernels into a large mixing bowl.

Add the red pepper, red onion, cilantro stems and beans and pour in the dressing. Toss well to make sure everything is coated, then taste and adjust the seasoning as necessary.

Once the birds are cooked, remove from the oven and leave to rest for 5 to 10 minutes. Sprinkle with the cilantro leaves and serve with the corn salad and lots of napkins!



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