As Mr B is off ‘out and about’ this week (again), I’ve been struggling to muster any kind of enthusiasm for cooking – I hate cooking for one! – but completely forgot to cancel/reduce my Abel & Cole order so have masses of veg that I need to eat all by myself…a large box designed to feed 4 for a week will not beat me!
So, with this in mind, I came up with/stole/borrowed a few ideas from around the web and came up with the most delicious salad I’ve had in a long time…anything with halloumi is a winner for me anyway!
I sort of used this recipe but also sort of didn’t…quantities of each ingredient are completely up to you based on your greed/number of people etc.
Halloumi, broad bean and mushroom salad recipe
- Pod the broad beans, blanch them in boiling water (basically till they float to the top – about 2 mins).
- Rinse with cold water and then ‘pod’ again so the tough outer skins are taken off.
- Chop up some mushrooms roughly (I have no idea what variety I had but something sort of shitake like) and fry in a pan with a little oil.
- Once the mushrooms have started to shrink add the podded, podded broad beans and lots of salt and pepper.
- Fry till they all the beans look a little golden (about 3 mins).
- Meanwhile prepare your salad, I just had some lettuce from the box (not a clue what type!), cucumber and tomato.
- Slice your halloumi up.
- Remove the beans and mushrooms from the pan and add the halloumi to the pan.
- Fry the halloumi till it’s golden on all sides – keep turning and don’t be tempted to add oil as it really doesn’t need it. Should be about 3 mins.
- Meanwhile make your salad dressing – I just guestimated and added a little virgin olive oil, some balsamic, some Dijon mustard and some agave syrup to a jam jar, seasoned and then shook to combine but you can get more fancy and make something from a recipe obviously.
- Once the halloumi is cooked, add the mushrooms and beans back to the pan, stir to combine and put on top of the prepared salad.
- Drizzle with your salad dressing – et voila! I served mine with olive oil and rosemary bread, courtesy of the Co-op…
Olive oil and rosemary bread
It’s also very nice cold for lunch the next day, not that that is what I am scoffing whilst writing this…ooops, bean in the keyboard
Whilst I have been still maintaining my meat free outlook (avoiding ‘rubbish’ meat wherever possible), I did have some meat over the last week or so – strangely I didn’t really enjoy it though…?! I am proud that I had a veg curry when we went to a curry restaurant though – the fact that it nearly blew my head off is another story entirely. Note to self: ’fairly hot’ means ‘sort of inedible’.
Anyway, this week I got a most awesome recipe card with my box so have followed two meat free recipes this week – delicious! The third one is coming tonight – Brocoli and Feta soup (though I may have to lie to Mr B and pretend it’s peas – he has some weird thing with brocoli…like him and Swindon really).
So, the recipes…
Spanish Potatoes with poached egg – essentially patatas bravas but easier (don’t bother peeling the potatoes).
Little Italian Courgette cakes – like carrot cake, odd sounding but strangely delicious and very low in fat.
Spanish potatoes with a poached egg
Little Italian Courgette Cakes
Visiting my parents on Saturday didn’t result in me eating meat as I thought it would. I had a verge version of the fig, balsamic and pancetta starter – with brie – and then a very nice puttanesca a la delia. Delicious!
Grilled balsamic figs with brie, gran padano shavings and rocket salad
- Meat free week – Day four (dreamalittledreamalot.wordpress.com)
- Meat free week – Day two (dreamalittledreamalot.wordpress.com)
- Puttanesca (postmoderncuisine.wordpress.com)
Black bean fajitas with tomato salsa and blackened onions
Recipe was my concoction and involved black turtle beans – let me know if you want the recipe!
We went to the lovely Tampopo last night for dinner – somewhere I would most definitely recommend – and both managed to remain on the meat free wagon…
I’m even quite looking forward to the bean burritos with guacamole that I have planned for this evening!
Pad Krapow with prawns and Hokkein noodles
The third day of meatlessness is going well…though I’ve been fantasising about salami
Asparagus, caramelised onion and pea spaghetti with herb salad and roasted corn on the cob
If you want the recipe, let me know!
Seeing as I completely forgot to take a picture of the lentil and squash curry Mr B cooked me as I was too busy wolfing it down, I thought I’d share a little peek at some of the things I’ve been making for my shop…felt flower brooches with vintage button centers.
Not long now! (yes, I am obsessed with pixlr o' matic!)
Having eaten a little too much meat over the weekend and having lots of veg in our box, I thought I’d share our week of meatless meals…
Butternut squash and chick pea curry with grilled pitta
Courtesy of eatlikeagirl. Delicious – sweet, coconutty and peppery.
So it turns out that a new laptop does not an un-lazy lady make – I can find a million and other reasons not to blog, or sew, or generally do anything except be tired and exhausted! But on to the real matter at hand here – a ridiculous excess of turnips!
If any of you, like us, get vegetable boxes, you might find, like us, that you’re often frantically searching for something, anything to do with the ridiculous number of some veg or other that happens to be in season. In this instance, the vegetable in question is turnip…aren’t turnips only used in pasties…? So a brief amount of searching on my phone later and I was inspired to come up with recipe one of two (Mr B’s been tasked with finding something for tomorrow night’s dinner that is equally as turnip excess busting)…
Turnip and bacon risotto
8 rashers streaky bacon
1 white onion, finely diced
1/2 red pepper, finely diced
2 small turnips, peeled and finely diced
1 pint chicken stock
2 handfuls arborio rice
1 small handful cheese (a mixture of blue cheese and parmesan is best I think)
2 handfuls spinach
- Fry the bacon in a deep frying pan until nicely crispy, remove and chop into bite sized pieces.
- Using the oil from the bacon (add a little more olive oil if needed), heat and add the onion and pepper.
- Fry for 2-3 minutes until softened.
- Add the turnip and fry for 3-5 minutes until it starts to soften.
- Add the rice to the pan and stir till all the grains are nicely coated.
After the first ladle of stock
- Add the stock a couple of ladles at a time and keep stirring regularly. Doing it this way (in a frying pan) you can add more liquid each time and you don’t have to stir it quite so often (thank you Mr Slater!).
- Keep doing this until the rice is cooked but till has a good bite to it. If you run out of stock before this happens then use white wine or just plain water is fine.
Stirring through the spinach, bacon and cheese
- Stir through the spinach, chopped bacon and cheese and season generously with pepper (it can take a lot of pepper!). You’re unlikely to need much salt – depending on the saltiness of the bacon you use.
- Serve with a grating of parmesan on top and a grind of black pepper.
Turnip and bacon risotto
I was also a little productive with food over the weekend – I got a MASSIVE red cabbage in my Abel and Cole box on Friday along with some cooking apples and loads of onions and a lovely recipe for red cabbage so it was inevitable. I did then have to think of something vaguely GI-like to have with it so the following was born…
First of all, follow this recipe for the cabbage – I’ve never actually followed a recipe for cabbage that took less effort so I’d definitely recommend it and the finished results were fantastic! Though there’s a lot of chopping to start with (cabbage, apple and onion), you can then just leave it in the oven and check on it every now and then. I did roast mine for longer than the 90 minutes they suggest as I like my cabbage super soft and almost treacley – I’ve now got 5 massive portions in the freezer that I reckon will last through till Christmas – can’t wait to have some with my Christmas ham…that I’ve been thinking about since September…sad I know
All chopped up and ready to go
I then decided to do some puy lentils to go with – using this recipe – except I halved it and added two finely diced carrots to the lentils whilst they boiled and left out the chorizo as I decided this might make it a little healthier! I also used balsamic vinegar instead of red wine as it was all I had…other than malt but it worked really nicely – make sure you season them really well before serving though!
Super rubbish picture of the lentils cooking
Red onions for the lentils
Whilst they were boiling away I put the chicken in a pre-heated oven (around 180 degrees C). The chicken was lovingly prepared by Mr B, who rolled a rasher of streaky bacon around each breast and held in place with cocktail skewers. You could also choose to stuff something inside the chicken but we went for simple…
Chicken roasting in the oven
The chicken takes about 25 minutes or until the bacon is crispy, just make sure it doesn’t go dry!
Then it’s a case of pulling the chicken, lentils and cabbage all together, hot, on one plate…et voila!
Roasted chicken with puy lentils and braised red cabbage
And it was delicious!!!! Try it and let me know what you think?
- Curried lentil soup (independent.co.uk)
- Spanish Lentils (foodrecipes.wordpress.com)
- Learn to Love: Red Cabbage (fitsugar.com)