Wednesday, 19 September 2012 - , , , , , , , 0 comments

RECIPE : Pesto-Infused Wheatberry & Chicken Parcels with Wasabi Mayo

I've been trying to think of a recipe for a chicken 'parcel' idea for a while - something that isn't fried and is delicious served cold. When I discovered these wheatberries last week, I realised that I had found my missing ingredient!


These little parcels are so pretty and very filling. The starchy, pesto-flavoured wheat berries and tasty chicken, blended together and wrapped in lime-drenched courgette ribbons, make a fabulous starter at 4pp/approx.160kcal per portion, or a light main meal at 8pp/approx.322kcal per portion. They look so impressive too, but are really very easy to make.

I featured wheatberries  in my CUPBOARD LOVE section earlier this week. They do a similar job to brown rice but, to me, the texture and flavour is far superior. They are also lower in propoints and calories, which is always a bonus in my book!


You will need:
(Serves 2 as a main course, 4 as a starter)

100g wheatberries
(If you can't find wheat berries, replace with brown rice but you will have to adjust propoints/calories accordingly)
Water 4 times the volume of the wheatberries
1 tablespoon green pesto
1/2 a low-salt chicken stock cube
130g cooked chicken

(I used this Moroccan variety from a supermarket. If you cook your own, make sure it's really tasty).
Small bunch coriander
6 spring onions
2 tablespoons lighter than light mayonnaise (85% less fat)
Courgette ribbons made with a vegetable peeler or mandolin
Juice of 1 lime
Bunch of chives

To serve:
(1 extra propoint/40kcal per serving)

1 Tablespoon Helmans wasabi mayonnaise per portion


Weigh out the wheatberries then add 4 times their volume of water to a pan.

Add the pesto and the 1/2 stock cube. Bring to the boil and cook for 25 minutes until all the liquid has been absorbed.

Allow to cool, then mix with the cold chicken.

Pop into a food processor and 'pulse' to blend the ingredients together, but retain most of the texture of the wheatberries. The mixture needs to be slightly sticky so that it binds together, but retain its 'bite'.

Put the mixture into a bowl. Add the chopped coriander, sliced spring onions and the light mayo to bring everything together. Season to taste.

In a separate mixing bowl, squeeze the lime then slice the courgette into ribbons, straight into the lime juice. This will soften the courgette and drench it with citrus flavour.

Weigh the chicken mixture then divide into 8 equal portions.
For each 'parcel', make a cross shape using 2 courgette ribbons.

Form the chicken mixture into neat 'patties' by pressing it together firmly. 

Fold up the courgette ribbon neatly against the patty.

Fold up the other ribbon to make a satisfyingly neat parcel.

My intention was to tie the chives around the parcel to finish it beautifully...however my supermarket chives were too short! So I tied 2 together then tucked them around and under the parcel to give the effect of being tied. Do what works best for you!

Arrange simply on your serving plate with a few sprigs of fresh herbs. This dish is pretty complete as the courgette acts as a refreshing contrast to the patty. You could serve with a simple salad of mixed leaves.

If you have enough pro points/calories, I can highly recommend serving this dish with a tablespoon of wasabi mayo. It just seems to bring all the flavours together and will get your palate dancing all the way to food Heaven!


Little parcels of deliciousness.




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