Spring Vegetable Pasta

Garden Green Pasta

Green Pesto Pasta

This delicious pasta dish will ensure you and your family are getting your daily dose of greens! Ready in a flash, and with a chilli pop that will keep you warm in winter, it’s the perfect weeknight main meal or side to grilled meat.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of Green Vegetables – I used McCain Garden Greens – cooked as per packet instructions
  • ¼ cup of olive oil
  • 3 cloves of garlic – halved and finely sliced
  • 1 long red chilli – halved, seeds and membrane removed, and finely sliced
  • The juice of 1 lemon
  • 500g of Orecchiette pasta
  • 1/3 cup of green basil pesto
  • 100g of rocket
  • Shaved parmesan to serve
  • Salt and pepper to season

Spring Vegetable Pasta

Method

  1. Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling water, to al dente, and drain, reserving ½ cup of pasta water.
  2. Heat olive oil in a large pan over a medium heat. Add sliced garlic and chilli and cook for 2 minutes, stirring. Add pesto, pasta, Green Vegetables, lemon juice and season to taste. Mix well and cook for 2 minutes. Add reserved pasta water sparingly to lubricate the pasta and create a dry sauce.
  3. Divide rocket evenly amongst bowls, top with Garden Green Pasta and serve topped with shaved Parmesan.

Enjoy!

Soda Bread

Soda Bread

Soda Bread

On Christmas Day my family indulged in a gigantic Christmas lunch with all the trimmings. Afterwards, we sat back, entered our food coma’s and emerged from them around the same time the Griswalds realise their Great Aunt has wrapped her cat as a Christmas present. Now, I don’t know if it was jelly-soaked wrapping paper, the deflating Turkey or the flow of toxic camper-van toilet waste into the gutter, but it was at this time that my brother announced it was time for his annual Pork and Cheese toasted sandwich.

In this particular sandwich my brother attempts to fit as much leftover pork, gravy, vegetables and cheese as possible, on a sandwich without incurring the much feared toastie-blowout. The toastie-blowout is a catastrophic Australian-ism thats possible occurrence will strike fear into the hearts of even the most fierce and weathered tradies, not dissimilar to the fabled “Drop Bear”, it is where your cheese and filling squirts out of the sandwich only to bake onto your jaffle maker. Life can be so cruel.

Upon him entering the kitchen, banshee-esque screams could be heard throughout the neighborhood as he realised there was no bread he could eat, he is allergic to yeast.  DUN-DUN-DUUUUN. Being the wonderful and modest sister I am, I stepped in and decided to whip him up a batch of yeast-free soda bread. Recipe below in case you ever find yourself or a loved one in such circumstances, or if you simply want some delicious bread.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups plain flour
  • 1 cup of rice flour
  • 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp of garlic powder
  • 1 tsp of onion powder
  • 1 tsp of ground cumin
  • 2 tsp of fennel seeds
  • 60g butter, at room temperature
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 tsp white wine vinegar
  • Butter, to serve

Method

  1. Preheat fan-forced oven to 180°C. Combine the flour, bicarbonate of soda, salt, onion powder, garlic powder, ground cumin and 1 tablespoon of the fennel seeds in a bowl. Rub the butter into the flour until it resembles fine breadcrumbs.
  2. Make a well in the centre of the flour mixture. Add the milk and vinegar and use a round-bladed knife in a cutting motion to mix until the mixture starts to come together. Use your hands to bring the dough together in the bowl. Turn onto a lightly floured surface and gently shape into a ball. Use your hands to roll the dough into a 40cm-long log. Cut into 8 equal portions.
  3. Shape each dough portion into a ball and place on a large baking tray. Use a sharp knife to score a cross into the top of each ball. Sprinkle with remaining fennel seeds. Bake in oven for 25 minutes or until the bread is golden and sounds hollow when tapped on the base. Serve warm with butter.

Enjoy!

Pea and Avocado Gazpacho

Pea and Avocado Gazpacho

This is honestly one of the easiest dishes I have ever made – measure, blend and top. It is delicious, in fact I surprised myself with how good it tasted, and it can be ready in a flash. The vibrant green of the gazpacho against the red of the prawns gives this dish instant visual appeal which means it’s a sure thing for summer get together’s, parties or Christmas do’s.

Ingredients

  • 4 cups of McCain Frozen Peas – thawed
  • 3 cloves of garlic – crushed
  • 3 cups of vegetable stock
  • 1 ripe avocado – mashed
  • 2 tbs of lemon juice
  • ½ cup of thickened cream
  • 500g cooked peeled prawns
  • 1 red chilli – halved, seeds removed and finely sliced
  • ½ cup of pea shoots
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • ½ cup of McCain Frozen Peas – thawed, to serve
  • Salt and pepper – to taste
  • Oil olive – to serve, if desired.

Pea and Avocado Gazpacho Progress

Method

  1. Place McCain Frozen peas, garlic, vegetable stock, avocado and lemon juice in a large bowl and add in batches to a blender blitzing until smooth.
  2. Stir through the thickened cream and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Place the prawns, chilli, lime and pea shoots in a small bowl and toss to coat.
  4. Divide the gazpacho evenly among bowls, top with prawn mix, scatter with remaining McCain Frozen Peas and drizzle with olive oil, if desired.  Serve.

Pea and Avocado Gazpacho

15 Minute Monday – Creamy Mushroom Sauce

Creamy Mushroom Sauce

I love mushrooms, I can’t get enough of them – breakfast, lunch or dinner – they are a welcome inclusion to any meal. I especially love mushroom sauce/gravy, the pub kind is particularly delicious atop a perfectly cooked steak. Without heading out the pub every time I wanted this and to cut out unneeded  additives

Ingredients

  • 2 tbs of olive oil
  • 1 tsp of crushed garlic
  • 1 cup of thinly sliced brown mushrooms
  • 150ml of lite thickened cream – you can add more if you like it extra saucy
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Method

  1. Heat olive oil in a small frying pan over a medium heat, add garlic and stir until fragrant.
  2. Add mushrooms and stir to coat and allow to brown slightly, approx. 2 minutes. Pop a lid on the pan and allow the mushrooms to soften and appear golden, approximately 4 minutes, stirring to ensure they don’t burn or stick.
  3. Remove lid, season with salt and pepper, add cream and stir until the cream reduces slightly or you can’t resist eating it!.

Best served atop a medium-rare steak, steamed greens and my delicious white bean and chickpea ‘mash’.

Enjoy xx

 

15 Minute Monday – White Bean and Chickpea Mash

White Bean and Chickpea Mash

White bean and chickpea ‘mash’ is the perfect accompaniment to steak and veggies or as a side for Christmas roasts. This garlicky, lemony, ultra-fabulous, utterly addictive bean mash is a wonderful substitute for those looking to kick potatoes.

Ingredients

  • 1 can of white beans – drained
  • 1 can of chickpeas – drained
  • 1 tsp of dried rosemary
  • 1 tbs of crushed garlic
  • 1/4 cup of olive oil
  • 1/4 cup of lite thickened cream
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Method

  1. Heat olive oil in a small pot over a medium heat. Add garlic and rosemary and cook, stirring until fragrant.
  2. Add white beans, chickpeas and lemon juice to the pan and allow to cook, stirring for 3-5 minutes or until warmed through.
  3. Add cream to the beans and use a potato masher or fork to roughly mash/squish the beans.
  4. Season with salt and pepper and serve!

Enjoy xx

Beef Kofta

Beef Kofta

Ingredients

  • 500g premium beef mince
  • 1 brown onion – finely diced
  • 4 cloves of garlic – minced
  • 1/2 cup of loosely packed coriander leaves – roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander seeds
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp of dried ground onion
  • 1 tsp of dried ground garlic – I like garlic
  • Freshly ground salt and pepper – to taste, about 1/2 tsp each

Method

  1. Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Shape mixture into small football shaped sausages – you should get about 15-20 per 500g of mince.
  3. BBQ, grill or pan fry until cooked.
  4. Serve with salad, pita bread, natural yogurt and lemon wedges.

Enjoy!

Char-grilled Chorizo Rolls

Image: Gourmet Traveller http://bit.ly/15JFCsP

Image: Gourmet Traveller http://bit.ly/15JFCsP

The final weekend of the NRL season is here and what better excuse to fire up the barbie?! This year, ditch the bulk-buy snags and horrible, artificially flavoured chicken kebabs for a delicious char-grilled chorizo roll. Served with two yummy sauces and salad sides, these rolls are sure to be a hit.

Ingredients

  • 6 fresh smoked chorizo – if you use fresh chorizo you may need to increase your cooking time
  • 6 soft torpedo rolls, split lengthways
  •  Rocket

Ingredients – Roast tomato salmorejo

  • 500 gm (about 2 punnets) cherry tomatoes
  • 90 ml extra-virgin olive oil
  • 90 gm coarsely torn crustless sourdough bread
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp sherry vinegar

Ingredients – Salsa vinagreta

  • 40 gm tiny salted capers, rinsed
  • 1 hard-boiled egg, coarsely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 cups (firmly packed) flat-leaf parsley
  • ½ cup (firmly packed) oregano
  • 200 ml extra-virgin olive oil
  • 50 ml white wine vinegar

Method

  1. For roast tomato salmorejo, preheat oven to 200C. Place tomatoes on an oven tray, drizzle with 30ml olive oil, season to taste and roast until dark golden (8-10 minutes), transfer to a food processor. Combine bread in a small bowl with 60ml cold water, stand until soft (2-3 minutes). Add to food processor with garlic, process until smooth, then, with motor running, add remaining oil in a thin steady stream until emulsified. Add vinegar, season to taste, process to combine. Makes 250ml, will keep refrigerated for up to five days in an airtight container.
  2. Meanwhile, for salsa vinagreta, process capers, egg and garlic in a food processor until finely chopped. Add herbs, process until coarsely chopped, then, with motor running, add oil in a thin steady stream and process to a fine paste. Add vinegar, season to taste and set aside. Makes 250ml, will keep refrigerated for up to five days in an airtight container.
  3. Preheat a char-grill or barbecue to high heat. Cook chorizo, turning occasionally until browned (6-8 minutes). Split lengthways, then stuff into rolls and serve with wild rocket, salsa vinagreta and tomato salmorejo.

Best washed down with an icy cold beer!

Enjoy!