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
I completely forgot to take a picture of my rainbow rice dinner – an Abel and Cole recipe. But I thought I’d share with you a much better picture that I took yesterday…
My beautiful engagement ring 🙂
- Meat free week – Day four (dreamalittledreamalot.wordpress.com)
- Meat free week – Day two (dreamalittledreamalot.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!
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!
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.
Having enjoyed eating this so much the other night I felt I had to share my most awesome dinner with you, courtesy of the Cinammon Kitchen’s Vivek Singh, Miss Masala and Coconut Raita and their most delicious recipes…
Miss Masala's Breaded Fish - I used Ling
Rack of lamb with Saffron sauce and gujarati dahl
Miss Masala – she’s not got the recipe for the fish online – you’ll just have to buy her book! 😉
Cinnamon Kitchen Rack of Lamb recipe
Gujarati Dahl recipe from Coconut Raita.
- Curry. Are we doing it justice? (thefatoftheland.wordpress.com)
- Garam Masala Tuesdays: Mutton Patiala (thenovicehousewife.wordpress.com)
- Karimeen Pollichathu. (meenuskitchen.wordpress.com)
On Friday I decided to treat us to some MASSIVE steaks from our local butchers for dinner to serve with some spicy potatoes and green salad…but then I got them home and realised they needed something more to do them justice – a little Googling later and the lovely Coconut Raita provided me with an excellent recipe for coriander pesto that more than did the steaks justice.
Our ribeye steaks
Smoked chilli and sea salt saute potatoes
Cooked ribeye steak with the obligatory red wine 😉
Although Mr B was slightly of the opinion that I was trying to kill him – after making a SERIOUSLY hot South Indian potato curry earlier in the week – with my second intensely heated dish of the week, it was actually delicious and a meal I would definitely recommend!
I’m not sure how many of you, like me, have been watching the new series of Masterchef? I’m a serious Masterchef nut, I watch all the versions including professional, celebrity and real…I even watch Australia (well, every other episode – why is it SO long as a series?!? And I really didn’t like the winner) but I still managed to miss the beginning of the new series 😦 It’s what comes with no longer watching adverts I guess…we missed the first episode of Hustle too…anyway, I digress! So Masterchef, what I have seen of it, has inspired me to get back into cooking a few new things…or new varieties of old things. Hence this recipe!
So with no further ado, the delicious recipe…
Super spicy falafel, minted meatballs, yoghurt dip, chopped salad and grilled pitta
Serves 2 (with a nice amount of leftovers for lunch the next day!)
For the falafel:
- 1 tin chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1 red chilli (maybe don’t use a birdseye though like I did!)
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 2 heaped tsps tahini
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp ground black pepper
- sesame seeds for rolling
For the meatballs:
- 150g pork or turkey mince (I’m unsure as to which mine was!)
- 5 tbsps chappatti/gram flour (though plain flour would work)
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 white onion, roughly chopped
- 2 tsps mint sauce
- 1tsp salt
- 1tsp ground black pepper
- extra flour for rolling
For the yoghurt dip:
- 1/2 – 1/3 tub of plain yoghurt
- 2 tsp mint sauce
- 1 tsp good quality olive oil
- salt and pepper
For the chopped salad:
- 1/2 red pepper
- 1 little gem
- 1/4 of a cucumber
Pack of wholemeal pitta breads
- Preheat the grill (I have a super rubbish oven so I guestimate the temp – maybe 200?). You need to make the falafel and meatball mixtures first…
- Falafel – in a small blender put all the falafel ingredients – leaving out the sesame seeds. Whizz up until everything’s smooth and you’ve got no lumps of chickpea – I like to shake the blender whilst it’s whizzing to get all the bits out of the corners…though I’d make sure you have a good grip on it… 😉
Falafel mix, ready for rolling into balls
- Put this is a bowl and check the seasoning. Rinse out the blender.
- Meatballs – in the blender put all the meatball ingredients (except the extra flour) and whizz until all smooth. put the mixture in a bowl, if it’s still quite runny (it wants to be starting to ‘bind’ at this point), add a little more flour.
Pork/turkey meatball mix, ready for rolling
- You know want to roll both the falafel and meatballs into small balls (think ping pong size) – rolling the falafel in the sesame seeds and the meatballs in the flour – alternatively you could throw sesame seeds everywhere as I did!
Falafel ready for the oven
- Put all the balls on baking trays, ready for being grilled.
- Put the falafel under the grill for 10 minutes, turn and cook for another 10. Take out and replace with the meatballs. Cook the meatballs for the same time – 10 minutes one side, then 10 on the other. Put the falafel and meatballs on a big platter and put at the bottom of the oven (leaving the grill on) to keep warm.
- Whilst these are cooking, prepare the yoghurt dip and the salad.
- Dip – all you need is to bung all the ingredients in a bowl and mix – super simple 😉
Yoghurt dip (with a little Betty)
- Salad – chop all the ingredients into roughly 1cm square chunks – though being precise is in no way essential. Toss together and put in a bowl.
- You are now ready for the pitta, I did 2 per person but Mr B looked at me like I was starving him and had 3…maybe, I might have joined him 😉 Anyway, put however many pittas you are having on a baking tray and bung under the grill for 3-5 minutes, turning after 2.
- Put the pittas on the serving platter with the meatballs and falafel and serve it all together.
Spicy falafel, meatballs with yoghurt dip, chopped salad and grilled pitta (plus fire)
N.B. A large glass of red wine and open fire seriously improve your enjoyment of this dish!
P.S. Who’s your favourite Masterchef contestant? The crazy Japanese lady is HILARIOUS! 🙂
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