SONY DSCchicken kale broth

Working in Soho, you’re constantly surrounded by good food. Great for a catch up over ramen at Bone Daddies or general food coma at Burger & Lobster. Steak for £10? Yeah, you can get some of that too. Yes I’m looking at you, Flat Iron.

Not so great for the good ol’ diet. Realistically eating whatever you want for lunch every day, be it burgers, Thai, steak or Szechuan, is not gonna be a good look in the long run. So eventually like me, you’ll come to the conclusion that if you continue to eat like Adam Richman you’ll be left in need of a new wardrobe and a new job that pays enough to afford your fourth extortionately priced yet oh so good lunch of the week.

After what can only be described as gaining the freshman 10, I looked to my colleagues for some foodspiration seeing as they’re total babes with bangin’ bods. Apart from a lot of herbal tea and avocado on rye, in this office a hot box is the epitome of a perfectly balanced lunch. Think brown rice topped with some sort of stew or curry that ticks a ton of WF, GF, LF, low GI and DF boxes.

Great, I thought, finally on the straight and narrow. I’m going to be a goddess in no time! Until of course I started to receive threats of a £5 daily charge for dipping into a previously non-existent overdraft. Unarranged, might I add. Those fiends.

Taking matters into my own hands, I set to work in creating my own LF, V, low GI, GF and everything else lunches. Whipped up in a mere 30 minutes and costing a fraction of what you’ll be charged in Soho, this here is a healthy alternative to those Ari Golds and tastier than a ham sandwich.

Chicken and Kale Broth

Serves 2 generously

800ml vegetable stock
3 heaped teaspoons of fresh pesto
200g cooked skinless chicken, pulled into chunks
175g wild mushrooms, roughly chopped
150g curly kale, chopped
75g garden peas, fresh or frozen
a few sprigs of lemon thyme
Salt
Pepper
50g brown rice and 50g Camargue red rice (optional)

If making the rice, rinse well and cook together in the same pan according to packet instructions. Drizzle with olive oil, lightly season and set aside. This should take about half an hour.

To make the broth, add the pesto and the stock to a pan and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and add the chicken, cooking for around 15 minutes. Tip in the rest of the vegetables and simmer for a further 5 minutes. Season to taste and stir in the lemon thyme.

Serve on the mixed rice with as much or as little broth as you like  – soup or hot box!

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