Pasta with Broccoli and Smoked Cheese

broccoli.jpgTime to prepare : 20 mins

Ingredients:
2 tblsp olive oil
1 large onion and 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
500g (1 lb) fresh pasta and
6 Lapsang Souchong Tea Bags
500g (1 lb) broccoli, divided into bite-sized florets
400g (14oz) can of chopped tomatoes
1 tblsp concentrated tomato puree
125g (4oz) either smoked or herby black olives
2 tbsp chopped fresh thyme
125g (4oz) smoked mozzarella, sliced.
To serve: sliced tomato and fresh basil leaf salad

Step One : Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Add the pasta and tea bags, stir well and cook until the pasta is al dente. Drain well and keep warm. Discard the tea bags.

Step Two : Cook the broccoli florets in boiling salted water until just tender, about 3 minutes. Drain well. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large frying pan, add the onion and garlic, and cook gently until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, tomato puree, olives, broccoli and thyme, and cook for about 3 minutes.

Step Three : Gently toss this sauce with the pasta then add the sliced mozzarella and serve before the cheese melts with a tomato and basil salad drizzled with balsamic vinegar.

LL-NUT-CIRCULATE-10SAVE-2019[10812]

Pea and Basil Tart with a Buttery Oat Crust

Recipe courtesy of Psychologies Magazine (July 2017) and taken from Food for a Happy Gut by Naomi Devlin.

Oat flour makes a crisp, rich crust – the perfect foil for a smooth pea filling and some cool probiotic labneh. The tart is easily digestible, but you could increase its probiotic value by adding a garlic clove and using the white of the onions.

IMG_1868

Serves : 4

Ingredients Oat Crust:
70g oat flour (or porridge oats, ground)
70g buckwheat flour
70g ground linseed
2 pinches of sea salt
70g cold salted butter, diced
80-100g live Greek-style yogurt

Pea and basil filling:
225g frozen peas
3 large organic eggs
150ml double cream
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon, plus juice of 1/2 lemon
Large handful of basil, plus extra to dress
3 pinches of sea salt
4 spring onions, green parts only, sliced
120g labneh
Olive oil, for drizzling
Freshly ground black pepper

Step One : For the crust, put both flours, the linseed and salt into a bowl, rub in the butter until it resembles coarse breadcrumbs, and use a knife to stir in half the yogurt. Add the remaining yogurt in teaspoons, until the mixture starts to clump, then gather into a ball and knead till smooth. Form into a disc, then wrap and chill for 20-30 minutes.

Step Two : Preheat the oven to 200oC / 390oF / Gas Mark 6 and line the base of a 23cm loose-based tart tin with baking parchment.

Step Three : Lay a sheet of clingfilm on the worktop, place the pastry on it and cover with clingfilm. Roll into a circle to line the tin, peel off the top layer of clingfilm, and ease the pastry into the corners before removing the clingfilm and trimming the top edge. Chill for at least half an hour.

Step Four : Line the tart case with parchment, fill with baking beans and bake for 15 minutes, then remove the parchment and beans and bake for 5 minutes. Set aside. Turn the oven down to 180oC / 390oF / Gas Mark 4.

Step Five : To make the filling, blanch the peas in boiling water until just cooked. Refresh in cold water, then drain and reserve 25g. Put the remaining peas into a blender with the eggs, cream, lemon zest and juice, basil and salt. Blend and pour into the case, then scatter over the onions and reserved peas.

Step Six : Bake for 30 minutes, until set. Put side till just warm, then scatter with labneh and basil and drizzle over the olive oil. Season with black pepper and serve.

TNT-OFFER-2019

Courgette Ribbon, White Bean Smash and Pesto Bruschetta

Recipe courtesy of Psychologies Magazine (Spring 2019) and taken from The Yoga Kitchen Plan by Kimberly Parsons.

Elevating toast to a nourishing light meal, this easy-to-prepare flavour hit is rich in protein and bursting with goodness. The vegan pesto is magic!

IMG_1861 (2)
Serves : 2

Ingredients:
1 large courgette, thinly sliced into ribbons
1 x 400g can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
4 slices sourdough bread, toasted
Sea salt flakes, to serve
2 lime wedges, to serve

For the Vegan Pesto:-
1 large bunch basil leaves, plus extra to serve
1 small bunch coriander
30g pine nuts or kernels, toasted
35g raw pistachio nuts
120ml extra virgin olive oil, plus extra to drizzle
3/4 teaspoon sea salt

Step One : To make the vegan pesto, place all the ingredients into a food processor and blitz until smooth. Set aside.

Step Two : Place the courgette ribbons and beans in a large bowl, add a quarter of the pesto and toss to coat.

Step Three : Spread the remaining pesto onto the slices of toast and top with the courgette ribbons and beans.

Step Four : Drizzle with olive oil, scatter over some extra basil leaves and sea salt flakes and serve with lime wedges.

TNT-OFFER-2019

Tastes of Ghana – Gari Foto

Recipe courtesy of Psychologies Magazine (June 2017) and taken from Zoe’s Ghana Kitchen by Zoe Adjonyoh.

Gari – fermented, dried and ground cassava – has no real flavour of its own apart from the sourness of fermentation. But it can take on a great deal of flavour and bulk out meagre pickings in the fridge.

IMG_1814

Serves : 6

Ingredients:
120ml (4 fl oz) sustainable palm oil or groundnut oil
2 onions, finely diced
1cm (1/2 – inch) piece fresh root ginger, grated (unpeeled if organic), or 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1 garlic clove, very finely chopped or 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
2 fresh red chillies, deseeded and finely chopped, or 1/4 teaspoon ground hot pepper or cayenne pepper
3 large ripe tomatoes, roughly chopped
1 scant tablespoon tomato puree
250g (9oz) Gari (fermented, dried and ground cassava)
6 free-range eggs
Chopped coriander, to garnish (optional)

Step One : Heat the oil in a frying pan, add the onions and saute over a medium heat for about 3 minutes until translucent.

Step Two : Add the ginger, garlic and chillies, and stir well to evenly coat the onions before adding the chopped tomatoes and tomato puree. Leave the stew to cook over the medium heat for about 25 minutes.

Step Three : As soon as you’ve added the tomatoes, start preparing the gari, which is a bit like making couscous. Place it in a bowl and gradually spinkle with 120ml (4 fl oz) lightly salted warm water to evenly moisten it, mixing it through with a fork as you go. Be careful to add the water a little at a time so that you don’t overdo it, as the mixture should just be damp, not drenched!

Step Four : Cover the bowl with a plate or clean cloth and set aside for 10-15 minutes while you prepare the eggs. At this point, choose how you want to cook your eggs. If it’s the weekend and fancy a treat, you could make poached eggs, but if you feel like something more everyday, just boil or scramble them. It’s up to you.

Step Five : Before adding your choice of cooked eggs to the dish, fold the moistened gari into the stew, which should be cooked by now, and stir through gently but thoroughly – you should get a nice pink colour to the mixture. If you’ve decided to make scrambled eggs, you can also fold them into the gari now to create a sort of gari omelette, or serve them on the side.

Step Six : Remove the pan from the heat and season to taste with sea salt and black pepper. Serve immediately, with the seasoned poached, boiled or scrambled eggs on top, garnished with some chopped coriander.

TNT-OFFER-2019

Aubergine and Lentil Vindaloo

Recipe courtesy of Psychologies Magazine (April 2019) and taken from Cooking on a Bootstrap by Jack Monroe.

If you don’t like aubergine, use mushrooms.  Lentils could also be kidney beans, baked beans, black beans, brown or green lentils, or yellow split peas – for protein.  The flavour speaks for itself, or rather shouts, sings and dances!IMG_1859

Serves: 2-4

Ingredients:
1 large aubergine or 2 small aubergines, diced
50g dried red lentils
3 onions, finely sliced
Oil, for frying
4 fat garlic cloves
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp cumin, seeds or ground
1/4 star anise, or 1/8 tsp fennel seeds
A good grind of black pepper
1-2 tsp chilli flakes
2 tblsp tomato puree
2 tblsp vinegar or lemon juice, fresh or bottled
A fistful of spinach

Step One : In a bowl, sprinkle the aubergine with a good pinch of salt, then set aside.

Step Two : Thoroughly rinse the lentils and place them in a pan.  Cover with water – no salt or they will take an age to cook – and bring to the boil.  When the water is boiling, reduce to a simmer for 12 minutes, until the lentils are soft.  Drain, rinse and set aside.

Step Three : Meanwhile, toss the onions into a large pan with a little oil and, over medium heat, soften for 10 minutes.  Add the garlic cloves, peeled but whole, and the aubergine, stirring to stop it sticking.  Cook for 15 minutes, adding more oil if needed.

Step Four : Add the cinnamon, cumin, star anise, or fennel, and pepper, but only half of your chosen quantity of chilli.  (It is easy to add, but difficult to temper down if you misjudge it, so I put in half the chilli to cook, and leave half to garnish.)  Stir well to combine, then add 200ml water to the pan, and crank up the heat to medium-high.

Step Five : Add the lentils, tomato puree and vinegar or lemon juice and stir.  Bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer and cover, stirring slowly now and again.  It should take around 30 minutes to meld into glossy, orange goodness, and the liquid should thicken to an unctuous sauce.  If it is too watery, bring it back to the boil, reduce the heat and cook a little more.  Stir through the spinach a few minutes before serving.  This vindaloo is delicious with boiled rice, which makes it go further.

Other great cookbooks that help you keep an eye on the pennies:-

Beetballs

Recipe courtesy of Psychologies Magazine (April 2019) and taken from Cooking on a Bootstrap by Jack Monroe.

These are based on a beetroot burger recipe from Lee Watson’s vegan recipe book, Peace and Parsnips.  For a gluten-free version, replace the bread with a tablespoon or two of your preferred gluten-free flour.

IMG_1858

Makes : 20

Ingredients:
200g dried red lentils
1 small onion, finely sliced
2 fat garlic cloves, finely sliced
150g cooked beetroot (not the kind in vinegar; go for cheaper, vacuum-packed beets), finely diced
2 tblsp oil, plus extra for drizzling
1/2 tsp cumin or coriander, seeds or ground
1 slice of bread or a pitta
A pinch of salt
1 tblsp lemon juice, fresh or bottled

Step One : Thoroughly rinse the lentils under a cold tap, then pop into a pan. Cover with water and bring to the boil; do not add any salt at this stage or the lentils may ‘seize’ and never soften. Sad, but true. Reduce to a simmer and cook for around 15 minutes, until very soft, swollen and translucent.

Step Two : Meanwhile, put the oil, onion and garlic into a pan. Add the finely diced beetroot and the spice of your choice, and soften over a medium heat, stirring regularly to stop the ingredients from sticking and burning.

Step Three : Skim any scum from the top of the lentils using a spoon, then drain and rinse them thoroughly. Tip into a mixing bowl along with the onion, garlic and beetroot, and mash to a pulp. An ordinary jug blender, or any kind of food processor, will make this job easier, but it’s not essential; a fork or masher and a good dollop of elbow grease will yield a pretty satisfying result, too.

Step Four : When it’s rough pulp, grate the bread into crumbs and mix through, with a pinch of salt and a good squeeze of lemon juice. Cover the mixture and chill it in the fridge for half an hour to firm up.

Step Five : When firm to the touch, preheat the oven to 180oC / 350oF / Gas mark 4. Shape the mixture into small balls and place them on a lightly greased baking tray. Drizzle the top of the balls with a little extra oil, or brush each one if you can be bothered, and bake in the centre of the oven for 25 minutes, turning over halfway through. Serve immediately.

Other great cookbooks that help you keep an eye on the pennies:-

Portobello Mushrooms with Roasted Garlic Mayo on Potato Sourdough

Recipe courtesy of Psychologies Magazine (April 2014) and taken from The Ginger & White Cookbook by Tonia George, Emma Scott & Nicholas Scott.

Roasting mushrooms brings out their earthy flavour, providing a satisfying alternative to meat. If you haven’t time to make garlic mayo, crush a quarter of a garlic clove and stir it into some mayo, or even easier, rub the toast with a cut garlic clove instead.

IMG_1834

Serves: 2

Ingredients:
4 Portobello mushrooms
1 tblsp extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for dressing
Salt and pepper
4 thick slices of potato sourdough
4 tblsp roasted garlic mayonnaise (see below for recipe)
A handful of rocket leaves

Step One : Preheat the oven to 200oC / fan 180oC / gas mark 6. Clean the mushrooms, discarding the stalks. Place them in a roasting tin, drizzle with the olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

Step Two : Roast the mushrooms for 15 minutes, until softened. Turn them over and roast for a further 10 minutes.

Step Three : Toast the sourdough on both sides, then spread the garlic mayo on the toast and divide it between two plates. Top each slice with a mushroom.

Step Four : Dress the rocket in olive oil with a little salt and pepper. Pile on top of the mushrooms and serve.

How to make your own roasted garlic mayonnaise
Preheat your oven to 200oC / fan 180oC / gas mark 6. Wrap one garlic bulb in foil and bake for 40-50 minutes, until it is really soft when squeezed. Allow to cool. When it is cool enough to handle, separate all the cloves and squeeze all the soft flesh into a bowl. Mash with a pinch of salt, then stir in 400ml good-quality mayonnaise.

Cauliflower Soup with Blue Cheese and Chutney

Recipe courtesy of Psychologies Magazine (April 2014) and taken from The Ginger & White Cookbook by Tonia George, Emma Scott & Nicholas Scott.

When cooked for a long time, cauliflower has a beautiful velvety texture with a nutty and slightly spicy flavour. It goes excellently with blue cheese, but needs some sharpness to stop the whole thing getting too cloying, so add some lemon and a dollop of chutney as a garnish.

Serves: 6

Ingredients:
2 large potatoes, cubed
1 onion, diced
Sprig of fresh thyme
50g butter
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 medium cauliflower (about 600g), trimmed and broken into 3-4 cm florets
1 litre vegetable stock
200ml double cream
Juice of 1/2 lemon
250g Dorset blue or Stilton cheese
4 tblsp chutney (pear or apply chutney)
Freshly ground black pepper
Slices of toasted granary bread, to serve

Step One : Place the potatoes and onion in a large saucepan. Add the thyme and butter, cover and cook over a low heat until the potato is tender and the onion, translucent. Add the garlic and cauliflower, stirring to coat in the butter, and cook for 5 minutes. Pour in the stock, then cover and simmer very gently for 30 minutes – or until the cauliflower is tender.

Step Two : Remove from the heat, blend the soup to a smooth puree, then return it to the saucepan and loosen with a little water if necessary. Add the cream and heat through. Season well and add lemon juice to taste.

Step Three : Set out your soup bowls. Crumble a little bit of blue cheese or Stilton into each one, then spoon on the chutney and pour the soup around it. Add a twist of black pepper on top and serve with slices of toasted granary bread.

Souper Green Soup with Pumpkin Seed Croutons

Recipe courtesy of Psychologies Magazine (September 2015) and taken from In the Mood for Healthy Food by Jo Pratt.

This soup is packed with green vegetable goodness, and vitamins and minerals galore. The soup alone is great, but the croutons are a real tasty treat to scatter over the top, too. They’re salty, crunchy and very moreish.

IMG_1824

Serves : 6

Ingredients:
2 tblsp olive oil
1 fennel bulb, finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 leek, thinly sliced
1 medium-large courgette, sliced
1 litre vegetable stock
300g spring greens, roughly chopped
100g frozen peas, defrosted
1 large handful of fresh mint leaves
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the croutons:
100g feta cheese
50g pumpkin seeds
1 tblsp olive oil
1/4 tsp dried chilli flakes
1 tsp sumac

Step One : Preheat the oven to 220oC. Make the croutons first : break the feta into small chunks and gently mix together with the pumpkin seeds, olive oil, dried chilli flakes and sumac. Spread in a single layer on a non-stick baking tray and bake for 10-12 minutes, shaking the tray once to ensure even cooking. When cooked, the feta should start to turn golden in places, and the pumpkin seeds will be crunch and puffed up. Remove from the oven and set aside.

Step Two : Meanwhile, make the soup. Heat the olive oil in a saucepan over a medium-low heat. Add the fennel and garlic and gently sauté for about 5 minutes until the fennel is softened, but not coloured. Stir in the leek and courgette and continue to sauté for 5 minutes, then add the stock. Increase the heat to medium and bring to a simmer, then add the spring greens and cook for 3 minutes. Stir in the peas, and as soon as the soup returns to a simmer, cook for 2 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and add the mint.

Step Three : Using a blender, blitz the soup until it is smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste, and serve with the pumpkin seed and feta croutons scattered on top.

Carrots !

Some interesting facts about carrots …

  • IMG_1817The British eat their way through around 700,000 tonnes of carrots every year – that’s roughly 100 carrots per person.
  • The world’s longest carrot was grown by Joe Atherton from Nottinghamshire in 2007.  It measured in at 5.84 metres – over 19 foot long.
  • An 80g serving of carrots
    • that’s around half a medium-sized carrot
    • counts as one of your five a day.
  • Today purple carrots seem quite exotic, but when carrots first arrived in Britain from Afghanistan sometime around the seventh century AD, they were actually purple.

Recipe ideas with Carrots:-

Carrot and Spring Onion Latke
Latkes are normally made with potatoes.  Carrots give them a delicious hint of sweetness.
Whisk 2 eggs in a large bowl.  Add 500g grated carrots and 3 chopped spring onions; mix, then stir in 5 tblsp matzo meal and season with salt and pepper.
Scoop a large tblsp of the batter into a hot pan and fry at a medium heat until crisp and brown.  When ready, leave to drain on a paper towel and repeat until all of the batter has been used.  Serve with sour cream or crème fraiche.

Carrot Martini

It might not be as cool as 007, but this cocktail is very refreshing.  Blend 500g carrots with 200ml pineapple juice to a puree, then strain.  Add equal part of the carrot puree and orange-flavoured vodka or marmalade vodka to a cocktail shaker half filled with ice, give it a good shake and pour into martini glasses.  Garnish with a twist of orange.

Balsamic Glazed Baby Carrots

This sweet and sticky dish goes brilliantly with roast lamb.  Saute 300g baby carrots on a medium heat in 1 tblsp olive oil for about 10 mins, or until tender.  Stir in 1 tblsp balsamic vinegar and 1 tblsp brown sugar, stir to coat and serve.

(Article from Ocado Life)