Tag Archives: courgette

RECIPE: Stuffed Antipasti Courgette Swirls in a Fruity Tomato Sauce with Marinated Feta (reblog)

IMG_4920As promised on Friday, I’m sharing the recipes to make the food I had with you this week! These absolutely beautiful and delicious courgette swirls are up first. I’m not going to lie to you, this dish is pretty labour intensive. It’s delicious, sure, but I for one probably shouldn’t have spent about 2 hours in the kitchen  to make this (with way too much coursework being due in way too soon and all) AND absolutely worth it!

IMG_4864The recipe itself is very simple, it’s just you know, a lot of work. I got a little fed up with chargrilling courgette slices after about 5 minutes (I’m a little impatient), so I thought I’d just do it with raw slices, but then I tried a stuffed chargrilled courgette swirl and oh my word was it tasty! It’s still delicious, when they’re not chargrilled, so if you’re a bit lazy like me, or if time simply doesn’t allow, just mix and match, chargrill some of your slices and leave others raw (they’ll get cooked in the oven anyway). Or leave all them raw to start with, it tastes good either way, it just won’t have that smoky flavour as much.

RECIPE: Stuffed Antipasti Courgette Swirls in a Fruity Tomato Sauce with Marinated Feta

IMG_4870♧ Marinate 1 package of feta by crumbling it up with a fork and mixing it with good quality olive oil1 crushed clove of garlicpepperdried thyme and dried oregano. Just do it quantities by feeling, since this depends purely on your taste. It tastes best, if you let this sit in your fridge overnight, but it’ll still be tasty if you do it just before and let the magic happen in the fridge, whilst you get on with the rest of the dish. You probably won’t need all of it to for this dish, but it’s really handy to have in the fridge (there’ll be a couple more recipes over the next couple of days giving you ideas how you can use it!)

♧ Cut off the end bits and use a vegetable peeler to cut 3 courgettes into slices (quite thick considering it’s done with a vegetable peeler, but thinner than you could with a knife.) I don’t use the very first one, because it’s just courgette skin, but then I go until it doesn’t really work anymore and repeat this procedure on each side. Keep the middle bit.

♧ In a bowl, mix your courgette slices with about a tablespoon of olive oilsalt, and pepper.

♧ Heat a griddle pan, and griddle all your courgette slices. If this gets too tedious for you, see above!

♧ Whilst this is happening (told you it’d take a while), get cracking with your filling. Mix about 1/2 pack of cream cheese with 2 heaped tablespoons of sweet corn1 crushed clove of garlicdried oregano, salt, pepper, and some curry powder. Taste to see if you like it and adjust accordingly.

♧ Then (the courgettes are probably still going, if not, just set them aside to cool), make a really simple tomato sauce: Fry 1 chopped up red onion in a little olive oil until softened. Whilst this is happening, chop up the middle bits of your courgettes, then add them to the pan. Once they’ve gotten a little colour, add 1 tin of chopped tomatoes. Play around with the flavour, i.e. maybe add a little balsamic vinegar, maybe some thyme, salt, pepper, curry powder, whatever you fancy! 

♧ Preheat your oven to 200° C

♧ Once all your components are ready, get layering! In a fairly small casserole start by covering the base with about half the tomato sauce. Then (if you have kids this is where it’s fun to get them involved) smear a little cream cheese on each courgette slice and roll it up! I find this easiest if I just put a little on half the slice, fold it over and then roll, but it’s up to your preference really.

♧ Cover with the remainder of the tomato sauce, followed by some of the marinated feta.

♧ Put the casserole and 1 half baked ciabatta in the oven until the feta cheese has reached desired consistency and the bread has a lovely golden brown colour.

Enjoy!

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Week 3 #VegBoxChallenge – The Box

Here’s what I got this week, hit me with ideas you might have :)

2013-05-03 19.06.10(One of my favourite vegetables of all time, I’m so sad you can’t really get it in the UK. And I don’t understand why, you can grow it here and it’s pretty cheap?)

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How green is my box? (I love green veg so that’s a good thing)

Who’s got cool recipe ideas for me that I absolutely have to try?

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#VegBoxChallenge End of Week 1

This is what I made with all my beautiful veg:

♔ A delicious salad inspired by Jennifer from milk and honey. My version of the recipe is here, for this I used half of the broccoli from my box.

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♔ A super tasty asparagus-broccoli quiche. Oh and it’s topped with marinated feta. Recipe here!

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♔ Antipasti courgette roll-ups filled with cream cheese and sweetcorn, in a tomato sauce topped with marinated feta. Recipe here.

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♔ Moonblush (Cherry) Tomatoes (recipe here). These were supposed to go into the salad, but since that changed, we had them in a halloumi wrap that was served with spicy rice (similar to the one at Nandos).

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♔ Salad. I smothered it in an avocado-jalapeno dressing and had it with some green pepper in a wrap. Butterhead lettuce, my actually favourite kind of lettuce, used up (no photo, sorry)

♔ Roasted beetroot, carrot and red onions with cumin. This was surprisingly tasty, thank you for the idea Anthea! Unsurprisingly, I had it in a wrap (needed to use them up, I don’t actually live on wraps) with some greek yoghurt and marinated feta. NOM.

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♔ Delightful fennel pasta. I have to say I was super surprised how tasty this was. The recipe is from here. I had it without basil, because my basil decided to be an absolute let-down and be mouldy after only two days (again, no photo sorry!)

So here’s my first blogpost reporting back what I did with all the lovely things I had in my veg box last week and how it went in general. Having made it into a challenge and blogging about it actually really helped me to force myself to use everything up. For example, whilst I had made a food plan for this week, I didn’t think the order through properly. One of our dinners should have been the butterhead lettuce with an avocado-jalapeno-buttermilk dressing, halloumi etc etc. BUT I was so focused on waiting to have it when the avocado had reached perfect ripeness, that I forgot that lettuce doesn’t last forever. So when I realised, that it already wasn’t looking its prettiest on Tuesday, I decided to just have it for lunch in a simpler version instead… I would have definitely thrown it away otherwise (I’m not proud of it, but it’s true), since I’m not a big fan of lettuce at the best of times, and quite picky with things that have gone past there best before date, if it wasn’t for knowing that I’d be annoyed to have to report back, that I threw 1 veg away.

And this post my friends I think shows that I actually made great use of everything. I’m actually very happy with how the first week went. As I said before I used up more than I probably would have otherwise, and I put in a lot more effort to make it interesting (to a big part thanks to people giving great tips), and I think it paid off. I can honestly say that I enjoyed every single one of those dishes. For everything that’s actually a recipe, I’ll post recipes on here next week (hopefully). How did you get on with your veg, what did you make?

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Autumn is coming! (And a little delicious recipe number for Ratatouille ;) )

So, it’s getting cold now. When I left the house this morning, the air was proper crisp. It wasn’t just cold, it was crisp. Amazing. I love autumn, but obviously if you (like me) still have problems to dress appropriately (although I do get better, maybe I will manage by the time I’m 30, that gives me 8 years), you might get a little cold freezing.

I might also still have the urge to not listen to my mum when she says I better take a coat and then pretend I’m not cold, even though she clearly knows I am.

Anyway, no matter how nice this cold, crisp air is, you’ll be in need of a lovely and warming dish of food at the end of the day! Unfortunately (or fortunately, who are we kidding?!) most comforting, warming food includes lots of heavy ingredients, like cream etc. I won’t deny it, a lot of nights it will have to be one of those pretty heavy numbers, but if you would like to look after that, no doubt beautiful, figure of yours a little for just this one night, why not have Ratatouille with some crispy new potatoes? We had some last night and I absolutely loved it. I find it so comforting, and it’s got so much veg in as well, which will help you get through this what will probably be a really tough winter.
P.S. Another thing that will definitely also help and that is not food related are cozy, cute, warm slippery socks! I got mine from Primark for 4 pounds. (I don’t like primark and never shop there, but I just had to get these, they’re too cute not to!)

P.P.S. I hope none of you is a health freak, I’m aware, that I do use a little bit of oil in the recipe, and potatoes are carbs and I could should? substitute them for something healthier blabla, but who says we have to go all the way?

RECIPE: Ratatouille with crispy new potatoes

1. Preheat the oven to about 200° C.

2. For two greedy people, prep 500g of new potatoes by washing them, cutting out any black bits and halving the slightly bigger ones. Then cook them in boiling, salted water for 15-20minutes (or until you think they’re done).

3. Whilst the potatoes are boiling, get on with your veg. Start by washing and cutting 1 aubergine into roughly 0.5-1cm thick slices. Lay the slices out on a chopping board and sprinkle with salt, so you get rid of unnecessary water. Wash and cut 1 Courgette into roughly 0.5cm slices and cut 1 red and 1 yellow pepper into pieces roughly as big as the courgette slices (obviously take the green bit and the seeds out!).

4. After about 10 minutes, dry the Aubergine pieces with kitchen roll (really squeeze them).

5. Put all the veg in a big bowl and mix with about 1 tablespoon of olive oil.

6. Now, to make this Ratatouille a little more interesting, chargrill it first. Yep quite a lot of effort, but it’ll be worth it, trust me! I usually start with the Aubergine slices, because they take the longest and really annoy me, just, you know, get the worst out of the way first.

7. Chop 1 red onion into little cubes. Caramelize the onion in a little bit of olive oil in a saucepan. Don’t rush it, you want it soft and delicious and not burnt and/or chewy! When you think the caramel sensation in your frying pan has almost reached perfection, add in 1 glove of crushed garlic. Let that fry for about 20 seconds, then add in 1 package of tomato passata, some chopped rosmarysaltpeppercurry powder and whatever takes your fancy and let it bubble away for a little bit to reduce (but not too much!)

8. Hopefully at some point, you will have finished chargrilling the veg. Congratulations (I mean it). Mix the veg with the tomato sauce in a casserole and top with a couple of slices of Mozzarella. Then pop it in the oven until the Mozzarella has browned a little bit.

9. Whilst that’s sizzling in the oven, finish your potatoes. Put them on an oven tray, top with some chopped rosemary, herby salt, garlic and a tiny bit of olive oil and crush the toppings into the potatoes with a fork.

10. When the Mozzarella has browned a little bit, put the Ratatouille on the bottom shelf of the oven and put the potatoes under a very hot grill for roughly 10 minutes. (But keep checking, times depend entirely on how hot your grill gets etc)

VOILA :)

P.S. If you want to be cool like us and use the ratatouille the next day for another fantastic recipe, just add another 2 peppers, 1 courgette and double the tomato sauce. I will tell you tomorrow how you can turn that into a delicious Ratatouille and Creamy Mushroom Lasagne!

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Things to Try Thursday, 5th of January 2012

SWEET
1. Fruit has fruit sugar in it, which means that roasting will lead to caramelization, i.e. goodness: Roasted Banana Muffins

2. Always up for a cheeky cheesecake. Again especially when it involves caramel: Caramel Apple Cheesecake Bars

3. Fleur de Sel can be more than interesting as well! Dark Chocolate Shortbread with Fleur de Sel

SAVOURY

1. Since it’s the new year, and we’re all trying to shift that weight we gained from the christmas holidays… Why not do it in such a delicious way: All Green Grilled Zucchini Tacos

2. Staying on the healthy track: Spinach, Feta and Blood Orange Salad

3. Pretty standard: Black Bean and Quinoa Burger

4. I love the idea of having little salsas and dips around to make every dish this little bit more interesting. This shall be one of them in the near future: Spicy Lemon Date Spread

5. Not so healthy but HELLOOOOO! Olive and Goat Cheese Turnovers (I’d probably replace goat cheese with feta cheese though)

6. These just look too pretty and delightful to be a thing. But I think they might be. Bite-sized baked brie

 

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Things to Try Thursday (15 September)

Bonjour!

SWEET

1) I completely agree with this blogpost! I don’t really like pure bananas either, but I love them in cake. So to use the words of the blogpost’s author let’s rot some bananas and make this amazing looking Buh-Nana Bread

2) Oh my life do these look delicious! Everything about them just sounds so so good: Peanut Butter Chocolate Pretzel Bites

3) Also from livelovepasta is this amazing sounding and looking recipe for Carrot Cake Cupcakes with Dulce de Leche Cream Cheese Frosting.

4) Oh and guess what, I might have found yet another recipe from the above blog that I can’t not share! (Sorry for all the Pingbacks!): Lemon Raspberry Bars

SAVOURY

1) To be honest, it’s definitely not automn-y here yet (still up to 30° some days!), but as soon as it gets even only a little bit colder, I will definitely have to try this spiced pumpkin chickpea stew!

2) Another recipe from Joy the Baker. This one sounds like it could be a good idea to take for lunch etc, it’s a Roasted Tomato and Caramelized Onion Farro Salad. NOM.

3) A while ago I posted some Courgette-Quinoa Fritters, but I might have to make these also delicious sounding Courgette Fritters first, since I can’t find any Quinoa in France.
P.S. There’s also a recipe for a delightful sounding dip!

4) And finally, I really like the sound of the Sweetcorn and Basil Polenta in this recipe!

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Things to Try Thursday (11 August)

SWEET

1) Even thought it doesn’t necessarily seem that way, it still is summer, and how much more summery than Blueberry Lemonade can it get?

2) I know at least one person, that would/will really appreciate these, but to be honest, I think most people would, because there’s nothing to dislike about the idea of Brownie Crisps and Icecream Sandwiches

3)This one just sounds and looks so incredibly light and fresh and summery and it’s got rose extract in, which makes it sound romantic too: Pink Grapefruit and Rose Cake

4) No words needed: Blueberry and Strawberry Clafoutis

SAVOURY

1) This one sounds like it could make for a nice and easy lunch: Pea, Basil and Feta Cheese Frittata

2) As mentioned a couple of times, I love butternut squash and this Butternut Squash, Feta Cheese and Rosemary Quiche just sounds too tempting to resist.

3) I’m always looking for ways to use quinoa, since it’s so healthy and keeps you full for quite a while. Quinoa combined with courgettes? Sounds good to me: Quinoa Courgette Cakes

4) BBQing as a vegetarian can become a little bit boring, especially when it’s always the old marinated feta and roasted veg (did I mention that I’m not the biggest fan of vegetables), so Aubergine Veggie Burgers sound like a good alternative to me!

5) This recipe actually includes a sweet and a savoury part, but if I actually get to try one, it will probably be the savoury one: Japaleno-Cheese Soft Pretzels (the other one included in this recipe is apple pie soft pretzels, so if you’re more of a sweet person, you should still have a look!)

6) Mushrooms, Pasta, simple, delicious, try: Wild Mushroom Pasta 

7) This one is not exactly revolutionary, I’ve had it many times, but I haven’t actually made it yet (…and the vinaigrette in this one sounds very delicious): Greek Salad

8) I haven’t exactly figured out what this one is, but it looks like it’s some sort of flatbread and even more important it’s topped with some marinated and grilled courgettes. Most of all, whatever it is, it looks like something I’d enjoy, it’s called: Piadine with Grilled Courgettes

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RECIPE: Couscous Salad “Ratatouille”

I was going to make a post about the restaurant we went to yesterday, but since I just had the most delicious salad for lunch, I thought I should share this first.
You’re probably getting annoyed: two couscous recipes in one week, but trust me, this one’s a gooden! I never used to like couscous, because it’s often really bland. The one I tried however was full of flavour and really nice for a light, healthy lunch.  Well that’s what I had it for, but I think it makes for a good salad to bring to a bbq you’re invited to, too.

I came up with this, because I love Ratatouille but since that’s a more  wintery dish, I thought I’d combine it with couscous. I know that Ratatouille is usually made by cooking different vegetables together over hours, but I prefer slicing different vegetables into thin slices and chargrilling them before combining with a herby tomato sauce.

Here is how this one works:

1) Mix 300ml of good vegetable stock with 1 tablespoon of honey and 2 tablespoons of olive oil

2) Bring to the boil, then pour over about 200g of couscous and let it do its work

3) Wash and cut 1 Courgette and 1 Aubergine into thin slices. I know you probably don’t need to anymore, but I still do it because it works and because I like the hint of saltiness it leaves on the aubergine: Put some salt on the aubergine slices to get some liquid (and therefore bitterness) out, then when they look a bit sweaty take some kitchen roll to dry them.

4) Cut up 1 red pepper

5) Mix the vegetable with a bit of olive oil

6) Chargrill the vegetable in a griddle pan. I like to do this one vegetable at a time, because they’re likely to need to be turned at the same time etc. You’ll need a bit of patience with the aubergine, but it’s definitely worth it. The aubergine slices need to be lovely and crispy

7) When all the vegetable is chargrilled, put it all together, sprinkle with salt and icing sugar and cut it into smaller pieces

8) Before you put the veg into the couscous, mix in about 3 tablespoons of tomato sauce (I used M&S margherita pizza sauce, but I think most tomato-ey things would work), some dry thyme and a bit of salt and pepper

9) Once that’s mixed, put in the vegetable which finishes the ratatouille couscous salad. I had it with a buttered sesame bagel, but as I said before, I think it would be nice as a side dish as well. If you want to make it more indulgent add some feta cheese!

Enjoy

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