Most people love a good meatball and by using extra lean mince you can easily incorporate them into your healthy eating plan. There are lots of reduced calorie meatball recipes around, but Beef Kofta Curry from Pinch of Nom has recently become one of my favourites.
The jewel in this recipe’s crown is the butternut squash based sauce. It adds a real depth of sweetness to the curry which also includes regular curry powder, tomato puree and garlic. You can enjoy this meal with or without rice, but don’t forget to add on the additional calories if you do and only have a small portion – a 125g serving of rice will set you back a whopping 173 calories! As I can take it or leave it, my portions of rice are typically 35g to 50g max.
Butternut squash is a fantastic vegetable which can keep for ages in your fridge. You only need 225g for this recipe, so you’ll have plenty leftover. If so, why not give Home-made Butternut Squash Tortellini or Curried Butternut Squash and Apple Soup a try?
Recipe: Beef kofta curry
Calories: 201 calories per serving (without rice or naan bread)
Book: Pinch of Nom – Everyday Light
Prep time: Approx 10 mins
Cooking time: Approx 35 mins
Ingredients: Low-calorie cooking spray, 1 onion (peeled and diced), 3 garlic cloves (peeled and crushed or grated), 1tbsp curry powder, 1tbsp tomato purée, 750ml beef stock (2 gluten-free beef stock cubes dissolved in 750ml boiling water), 225g butternut squash (peeled and chopped), 400g 5%-fat beef mince, 10g fresh coriander (chopped), sea salt, freshly ground black pepper, 75g fat-free natural yoghurt, 50g uncooked rice per portion to serve – cooked according to packet instructions (add 173 calories per 125g cooked serving)
Cost per portion: Approx £1.23 (without rice or naan bread)
Method: Spray a saucepan with low-calorie cooking spray, add the diced onion and cook over a medium heat for 4-5 minutes, until soft and beginning to brown. Add two-thirds of the garlic and all the curry powder and continue cooking for 1 minute, allowing the flavour of the spices to be released.
Add the tomato purée, stir well, then add the beef stock. Add the butternut squash, stir and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 20-25 minutes.
Meanwhile, make the beef kofta meatballs. Place the beef mince in a bowl with the remaining garlic and half the chopped coriander and season. Mix well, then divide into 12 even pieces and roll into balls.
Spray a wok or frying pan with low-calorie cooking spray. Add the meatballs and fry over a medium-high heat, turning frequently, for 5-10 minutes, until the meatballs are browned on all sides and cooked through. Set aside in the pan.
When the squash is soft, remove the pan from the heat and blitz with a stick blender until smooth. Carefully pour this curry sauce into the pan with the cooked meatballs, stir well, then cover and simmer for 5 minutes.
Remove the pan from the heat, stir the natural yoghurt and remaining fresh chopped coriander through, and serve with cooked rice.
Cool within 2 hours of cooking, then divide into servings (3 kofta per portion) and freeze. Reheat in the oven or on the stovetop until piping hot.