Risoni and Pumpkin Salad

Risoni and Pumpkin Salad

I recently attended a bring-a-dish dinner party to farewell a friend from town who happens to be a vegetarian. I was on salad duties and decided to whip up a Pumpkin and Risoni salad which is a personal favourite of mine. It’s light, fresh and delicious. This dish is perfect for a dinner party, BBQ or to be served with grilled fish or chicken. The lemon sings through and compliments the pepperiness of the rocket and the acidic bite from the tomatoes; while the creamy pumpkin and risoni balance the dish.

Ingredients

  • 500g risoni
  • 700g butternut pumpkin – peeled and diced into 1cm cubes
  • 1 punnet of cherry tomatoes – quartered
  • 200g baby rocket
  • 1 large lemon
  • 1/4 cup of olive oil
  • Freshly ground sea salt and black pepper

Method

  1. Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees and a line a large baking tray with baking paper.
  2. Par-cook pumpkin in a lare saucepan of boiling water, drain and place on a lined baking tray.
  3. Coat lightly with olive oil, salt and pepper, place in the middle of the oven and bake 20-30 minutes or until golden.
  4. Meanwhile, cook risoni in a large saucepan of salted boiling water for 8 minutes or until cooked through as per packet instructions. Drain and cool.
  5. Using a peeler, peel the rind from the lemon and finely slice. Juice the lemon and reserve.
  6. Add pumpkin, tomato, rocket, lemon rind, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper to risoni, toss until well combined and serve.

Enjoy!

Sweet Potato, Carrot, Leek and Pumpkin Soup

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With the morning hovering below zero in Young it has been hard to drag myself out of bed of a morning and when I manage to I am normally greeted by my over enthusiastic dog, coffee and peanut butter toast. While going through the usual morning procrastination about get out of my dressing gown, brushing my hair and plying my face with make-up the other morning. I decided it was simply imperative that I make a soup to greet me when I came home for lunch; and, boy am I glad I did.

Arriving home, the smell of delicious soup filled the air. I hurried over to my slow cooker, lifted the lid and knew I was in some kind of soup heaven. So, in summary I suggest that you make this soup for lunch or dinner. You can have everything in the slow cooker and ready to go in under five minutes – yes, I know, it’s crazy quick to prepare. And, if you leave it long enough everything will have collapsed so much that you don’t even need to blend it.

Ingredients

  • 1 sweet potato or yam for our friends from the U S of A
  • 2 large carrots
  • 1 large brown onion
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 1 leek, white part only
  • 1 cup of dried yellow split peas, rinsed
  • 1/2 a butternut pumpkin – I use butternuts as I find them to have a creamier more subtle flavour but feel free to use whichever variety you have on hand.
  • 2L chicken or vegetable stock – if you use the vegetable you’ll have a lovely vegan soup
  • 2 sprigs of rosemary
  • 2 tsp of mixed dried italian herbs
  • 2 tsp of dried ground oregano
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Method

  1. Peel the pumpkin and sweet potato.
  2. Cut all vegetables and split peas into chunks and place in slow cooker.
  3. Add all spices and stock.
  4. Place slow cooker on HIGH if you would like the soup ready in around 3-4 hours or on LOW if you would like it ready in 5-6 hours or more.
  5. Cover and let cook!
  6. Uncover – remove rosemary stalks and bay leaves. Taste and add any additional seasoning needed.
  7. If you would like the soup to be free of chunks use a stick blender or blender to blend until smooth in batches.
  8. Serve in a bowl as is or with sour cream.

Tip: if you’d like to give this soup a twist add in a tin of Coconut Milk at the end, stir through and top with coriander leaves.

Enjoy!