Lockdown dinner recipes for when you're running out of inspiration

Lockdown dinner recipes for when you're running out of inspiration
Photo credit: HelloFresh

We're in the third week -  and almost at the halfway point - of the COVID-19 level 4 lockdown. This means that for many of us, the same old dinner recipes we're rolling out night after night are beginning to wear a little thin. 

A lack of takeaways available and a solid three, maybe four dinners in my cooking arsenal (at least half of them pasta) means that in my house we've gotten to the 'cheese on toast' stage of lockdown - delicious, but not exactly nutritious. 

Luckily the team at HelloFresh have come to the party with a little extra lockdown inspiration. They've gathered a list of some of their yummiest family-friendly recipes which are guaranteed to keep the whole household happy.

If you're working from home these can easily be whipped up for lunch. There are also a couple of vegetarian options - handy for those days the supermarket meat aisles get stripped bare. 

Bon appetit! 

Garlic and oregano halloumi tacos with lemon aioli and caramelised onion 

 

Garlic and oregano halloumi tacos with lemon aioli and caramelised onion.
Photo credit: HelloFresh

The ultimate in one-handed food, these tacos with delicious herbed halloumi, lemon aioli and sweet-sticky caramelised onion are best enjoyed sans cutlery.

Ingredients:

  • 2 red onions
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 blocks halloumi cheese
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 cucumber
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • Garlic aioli
  • 12 mini flour tortillas
  • 1 head cos lettuce
  • 2 tomato
  • olive oil
  • 4 tsp brown sugar
  • 8 tsp water
  • 8 tsp balsamic vinegar

Method: 

  1. Thinly slice the red onion. Finely chop the garlic (or use a garlic press). Thinly slice the cucumber into batons. Thinly slice the tomato into half-moons. Shred the cos lettuce (see ingredients list). Cut the halloumi into 1cm-thick slices. Place the halloumi slices in a small bowl of cold water and set aside to soak for 5 minutes. TIP: Soaking the halloumi helps mellow out the saltiness!
  2. In a medium frying pan, heat a drizzle of olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring often, until softened, 5-6 minutes. Add the balsamic vinegar, water and brown sugar and stir to combine. Cook until dark and sticky, 3-5 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl.
  3. While the onion is caramelising, combine the garlic, dried oregano, a pinch of pepper and a drizzle of olive oil in a medium bowl. Drain the halloumi, then pat dry with a paper towel and add to the bowl with the garlic-herb mixture. Toss to coat.
  4. In a small bowl, combine the garlic aioli with a good squeeze of lemon (see ingredients list). Slice any remaining lemon into wedges. TIP: Add as much or as little lemon juice as you like, depending on your taste.
  5. Wash the frying pan and return to medium-high heat with a drizzle of olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the halloumi and cook until golden brown, 2 minutes each side. While the halloumi is cooking, heat the mini flour tortillas in a sandwich press, or on a plate in the microwave for 10-second bursts until warmed through.
  6. Bring everything to the table to serve. Fill each tortilla with some cucumber, tomato, cos lettuce, caramelised onion and halloumi. Drizzle with the lemon aioli. Serve with the lemon wedges.

Cheesy chicken enchiladas with pickled onion & cos salad

Cheesy chicken enchiladas with pickled onion & cos salad.
Photo credit: HelloFresh

These easy chicken enchiladas get their signature cheesy topping from some time under the grill, making them a faster and simpler way to enjoy the classic Mexican flavours!

Ingredients: 

  • 1 red onion
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 tomatoes 
  • 4 chicken thighs
  • 1 packet enchilada sauce
  • 12 mini flour tortillas
  • 2 handfuls shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 1 bunch coriander
  • 1 bag cos lettuce mix
  • 2 pottles Greek yoghurt
  • Olive oil
  • ½ cup white wine vinegar
  • ½ cup water

Method:

  1. Thinly slice the red onion. In a small bowl, combine the rice wine vinegar, water and a good pinch of sugar and salt. Scrunch the onion in your hands, then add it to the pickling liquid. Stir to coat, then set aside until serving time.
  2. Finely chop the garlic (or use a garlic press). Grate the carrot (unpeeled). Cut the chicken thigh into 2cm chunks. In a medium bowl, combine the chicken and Tex-Mex spice blend with a drizzle of olive oil. Toss well to coat.
  3. In a large frying pan, heat a drizzle of olive oil over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, add the chicken and cook, stirring, until browned, 5-6 minutes. Add the carrot and cook, stirring, until just softened, 2-3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, 1 minute. Add 1/2 the enchilada sauce and cook, stirring, until just heated through, 1 minute. Remove from the heat. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Preheat the grill to medium-high.
  4. Line the base of a medium baking dish with baking paper. Lay the mini flour tortillas on a chopping board. Spoon the chicken mixture down the centre of a tortilla, roll the tortilla up tightly and place, seam-side down, in the baking dish. Repeat with the remaining tortillas and chicken mixture, ensuring the tortillas fit snugly together in the dish. Spoon the remaining enchilada sauce over the tortillas and sprinkle with shredded Cheddar cheese. Grill the enchiladas until the cheese is melted and golden, 5-8 minutes.
  5. While the enchiladas are grilling, roughly chop the tomato and coriander. In a large bowl, combine onion pickling liquid (1 tsp for 2 people / 2 tsp for 4 people), olive oil (2 tsp for 2 people / 4 tsp for 4 people) and a pinch of salt and pepper. Add the cos lettuce mix and tomato and toss well to combine. TIP: Toss the salad just before serving to keep the leaves crisp.
  6. Drain the remaining liquid from the pickled onion. Divide the chicken enchiladas between plates and top with Greek yoghurt and pickled onion. Sprinkle with coriander and serve the salad on the side.
  7. Drain the remaining liquid from the pickled onion. Divide the chicken enchiladas between plates and top with Greek yoghurt and pickled onion. Sprinkle with coriander and serve the salad on the side.

Cheesy veggie-loaded grilled gnocchi with sugo sauce

Cheesy veggie-loaded grilled gnocchi with sugo sauce.
Photo credit: HelloFresh

Soft pillowy bundles of potato gnocchi, smothered in cheese and baked until deliciously golden and oozy. Now, if that hasn’t got your mouth watering, wait until you pull this dish of bubbling goodness from your oven.

Ingredients: 

  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 2 brown onions
  • 2 stalks of celery
  • 2 carrots
  • Dried oregano
  • 1 large packet gnocchi
  • 2 tins tomato paste
  • 2 tins chopped tomatoes
  • 2 cubes vegetable stock
  • Large handful of shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 1 pinch chilli flakes
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 bag rocket leaves
  • 2 courgettes
  • olive oil
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 60 g butter
  • 4 tsp brown sugar
  • 2 tsp balsamic vinegar

Method: 

  1. Finely chop the brown onion and courgette. Finely chop the garlic (or use a garlic press). Grate the celery (or finely chop if you prefer!). Grate the carrot (unpeeled).
  2. In a large frying pan, heat a drizzle of olive oil over a medium-high heat. Add the onion, courgette, garlic, celery, carrot, dried oregano, a pinch of chilli flakes (if using) and the salt. Season with pepper and cook until softened, 5-6 minutes.
  3. While the veggies are cooking, heat a generous drizzle of olive oil in a second large frying pan over a medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, add the gnocchi (see ingredients list) in a single layer and fry until golden, 6-8 minutes. Add extra olive oil if the gnocchi sticks to the pan. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper
  4. Allow the undersides to become golden before tossing! TIP: Fry the gnocchi in batches if it doesn't fit in a single layer.
  5. Add the tomato paste to the pan with the veggies and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the chopped tomatoes, butter, brown sugar, crumbled vegetable stock (1 cube for 2 people / 2 cubes for 4 people) and a pinch of pepper. Stir to combine and simmer until fragrant, 5-7 minutes.
  6. Preheat the grill to medium-high. Spread the gnocchi over a medium baking dish and top with the sugo sauce. Sprinkle with the shredded Cheddar cheese. Grill until the cheese is melted and golden, 5-10 minutes. While the gnocchi is grilling, thinly slice the cucumber into half-moons. In a medium bowl, combine the balsamic vinegar and olive oil (2 tsp for 2 people / 4 tsp for 4 people). Add the cucumber and rocket leaves and toss to coat.
  7. TIP: Toss the salad just before serving to keep the leaves crisp!
  8. Divide the cheesy veggie-loaded grilled gnocchi with sugo sauce between bowls. Serve the rocket salad on the side.

Find more recipes from HelloFresh here

 

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