Healthy recipes for the New Year


As usual, this January will come with all of the typical promises, but there’s something that feels extra healthy about this new year. 2016 was a health-kick year, with spiralisers spinning out of control and more lunchtime chats about kale than you can shake a stick of celery at.

To help you on your eat-well way, we called upon our prep kitchen queen Jo, the lady who makes all of the delicious food we show on air look so tempting, for some tasty recipes. She used Panasonic‘s fantastic combi microwave oven, our Today’s Special Value on New Year’s Day, to make all of them!

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When we say healthy, this isn’t the type of meal that leaves your tummy wanting more. ‘I tried to come up with recipes that I would like to eat, and would also help towards my (more than likely futile) New Year’s resolution.’ Jo explains, “These dishes are flavoursome and nutritious, but also hearty without being heavy.”

We’re not a fad diet kind of crowd, Jo has a very easy-to-follow view on keeping healthy. From these recipes, you’ll see how ‘Food should always be as full of flavour as possible, and most of the time this flavour is added by using butter, sugar and cream. I try to replace these items with ingredients that aren’t as calorific, but still pack a flavour punch, like rapeseed oil instead of butter.

Scarlett & Mustard have a fabulous range of flavoured rapeseed oils that only require a small amount to add loads of flavour to the dish. I try to use a wide selection of herbs and spices to make things interesting, but find that sometimes just a little lemon zest or juice can lift and enhance a dish very easily.’

Plus, most importantly, it doesn’t have to cost half the earth for you to say a healthy hello to 2017: ‘For me,’  Jo shares, ‘eating healthily doesn’t have to cost that much more than eating normally, nor does it have to be coconut water, goji berries and the like. Fresh fruit and vegetables, fresh lean meat and fish are all good for you if you cook them right, and make sure you don’t add lots of butter and cream.

The Panasonic Steam Combination Oven will help with the time aspect, as you can combine the grill and steam functions with the microwave, allowing you to achieve the same results but quicker. I also love cooking with the Cook’s Essentials Slow cooker, I prep dinner the night before, put it on low before I leave for work and by the time I’m home, dinner is done.’





  • 3 smoked haddock filets
  • 450ml of milk
  • 375g basmati rice
  • 300ml water
  • 1tsp ground coriander
  • 1tsp turmeric
  • 2 1/2 tsp curry powder
  • 1tsp salt
  • Pepper to taste
  • 3 soft boiled eggs

Serves: 3 – 4

Time: 15 minutes

Skill: Easy


1. Place the smoked haddock in a shallow microwave-proof dish and sprinkle with a little pepper to taste

2. Add the milk and cover with cling film

3. Select ‘microwave’ and cook on high for 6 1/2 minutes

4. Remove from the microwave and allow to cool slightly before removing the cling film

5. In a microwaveable bowl, place the rice, water, salt and milk from the poached and smoked haddock

6. Cover with cling film and microwave on high for 8 minutes

7. Remove the cling film from the rice and stir to fluff

8. Flake the haddock into bite-size pieces and stir through the rice

9. Halve the boiled eggs and add to the dish

10. Serve and enjoy!


Roasted butternut squash with spiced quinoa



  • 1 butternut squash, halved length ways and seeds removed
  • 340g uncooked quinoa
  • 500ml vegetable stock
  • 1tbsp rapeseed oil
  • 1 tin black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 tin sweetcorn
  • 1tsp ground cumin
  • 1tsp ground paprika
  • 1tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1tsp chilli flakes
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • Chopped flat leaf parsley for garnish

For a simple and tasty side, mix feta, tomato, and red onion with a splash of olive oil

Serves: 2

Time: 40 minutes

Skill: Easy


1. Place the halved butternut squash on to the ‘Panacrunch’ pan and drizzle with rapeseed oil

2. Place into the microwave and close the door

3. Select the ‘microwave’ function to high, and set the time for 15 minutes

4. After 15 minutes, remove from the microwave and scoop out the cooked butternut squash flesh

5. Add this to the spiced quinoa mix and stir thoroughly

6. Spoon the mix back into the butternut squash shells and place back in the the microwave

7. Select the ‘Panacrunch’ setting and choose ‘frozen potatoes’

8. Add a weight of 400g and press ‘start’

9. Once the timer has gone off, remove from the oven and sprinkle with crumbed feta and plenty of freshly chopped parsley


Granola-topped baked apples



  • 4 apples, cored
  • 2 tbsp mixed dried fruit
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1tbsp honey, plus extra for garnish
  • ½ tsp Vanilla extract
  • 4 slivers of butter or coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp granola
  • Crème fraiche for serving

Serves: 4

Time: 10 minutes

Skill: Easy


1. In a bowl add the mixed fruit, cinnamon, honey and vanilla extract and mix well

2. Place the cored apples onto the ‘Panacrunch’ tray and fill the middle of the apples with the dried fruit mix

3. Top with the granola and a sliver of butter or coconut oil and place into the Panasonic oven

4. Press the grill setting four times until the grill, microwave and ‘Panacrunch’ setting is lit up. Set the time for 5 minutes and press start

5. Depending on the size of the apples you are using, you may need to increase the time slightly

6. Once cooked, remove from the oven and serve with the crème fraiche and a drizzle of honey


1 Comment

  1. Cheryl Cole December 26, 2016 at 6:33 am -  Reply

    Keep and print off

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