Warm butter bean salad

We normally make our bean salads using tinned beans but have now taken a conscious decision to us dried beans moving forward.  Although they are more time consuming to prepare we feel happy knowing what we are cooking and think  it is probably a healthier option.

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What do I need to make it?

 

  • 1 cup dried butter beans soaked overnight and pressure cooked
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • 1 big green chilli sliced
  • 1 plum tomato de-seeded and chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic minced
  • Handful fresh parsley chopped
  • 1 tsp sumac
  • Knob of butter
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • Salt and pepper to taste

 

How much will I make?

3-4 side portions

How do I make it?

Pressure cook the butter beans and drain any remaining liquid.   Heat a saucepan with butter and olive oil.   Saute the garlic over medium heat for a minute before adding the onions and green chilli.   Continue cooking over medium heat till the onions are translucent – add the cooked butter beans, sprinkle the sumac and salt and pepper and switch of the heat.   Dress with lemon juice – add chopped tomatoes and fresh parsley and give it a good mix.   Serve warm or at room temperature.

Mushroom pasta

If you love mushrooms and pasta this recipe is for you.   We picked up some large closed cup mushrooms last week and decided to make a dry warm pasta dish for dinner a couple of nights back.   The dish is incredibly quick to prepare and tastes great.

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What do I need to make it?

  • Pasta of choice for 2 persons
  • 10-12 large closed cup mushrooms quartered
  • 4 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 small shallot chopped
  • `1 Thai red chilli finely chopped
  • 1 tsp dry oregano
  • Large knob of butter
  • Handful of fresh parsley to garnish
  • Salt and pepper to taste

How much will I make?

Serves 2

How do I make it?

Cook the pasta with some salt and olive oil and keep aside (save some of the cooking liquor for later).   Heat a large pan with butter – saute the garlic and red chilli for a minute before adding in the shallots.   Cook over medium heat till the shallots turn translucent.   Sprinkle a teaspoon of the oregano, give it a good mix and then add the mushrooms.  Cook for ten minutes or till mushrooms begin to take on a bit of colour.  Adjust the seasoning and garnish with fresh chopped parsley.    Add the boiled pasta to the dish – if it sticks to the pan use some of the cooking liquor to loosen up the dish.   Serve with a sprinkling of grated Parmesan cheese.

Salad therapy – pepper prawns with avocado and rocket leaves

We have been rather quiet this week but have been collecting a few recipes which we couldn’t find time in the day to post.   One of us had a pretty big milestone birthday mid-week – officially in a new age bracket statistically speaking!  The first recipe we would like to share is a warm pepper prawn salad served with avocado and baby plum tomatoes on a bed of rocket leaves.

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What do I need to make it?

  • 1 packet of rocket leaves
  • 12 baby plum tomatoes halved
  • 2 small avocado’s pitted and cubed
  • 20 jumbo prawns
  • 1 small shallot finely chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 Thai red chilli chopped
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • Handful of coriander leaf stems chopped finely
  • Handful of fresh basil chopped
  • A generous knob of butter
  • Salt and pepper to taste

How much will I make?

Serves 2

How do I make it?

Sprinkle some salt and pepper on the prawns and keep them aside for half an hour.   Heat butter in a pan and add the chopped garlic to it – saute for 30 seconds before adding the chopped shallots and red chilli.   Continue to saute till the shallots go translucent before adding the prawns.   Cook on both sides till done – shouldn’t take more than 8-10 minutes.   Garnish with chopped coriander stems and basil.   Squeeze the juice of half lemon and serve hot on a bed of rocket leaves, avocados and baby plum tomatoes.

Red chicory with feta cheese

Red chicory is normally not on our shopping list, although it should be, as it makes an incredibly tasty salad option.   Interestingly we weren’t able to find too many recipes on the internet but we came across one by Angela Hartnett which we like and thought we would share it with you.

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What do I need?

  • 3 red chicory heads – stem cut
  • 1 orange peeled – each segment cut in three
  • 1 small apple sliced into sticks
  • 1 small red onion sliced
  • 6-8 green queen olives sliced
  • Handful walnuts toasted
  • 100 gm of feta cheese
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • Salt and pepper to taste

How much will I make?

2 large main portions or 4 sides

How do I make it?

For the dressing, whisk the olive oil and vinegar with some seasoning till it emulsifies.  Layer chicory leaves in a salad bowl and add the other ingredients before drizzling a generous portion of the dressing.  Enjoy.

Horse Gram Series – Sundal (warm salad)

January is a month when the realization of the excesses of the festive season hits most people and almost everybody wants to detox and diet.  Horse gram is one of the pulses which ancient Indian medical sciences of Ayurveda and Siddha claim to have many medicinal properties including liver and kidney detoxification and weight loss (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Horse_gram).  Horse gram is also good for coughs and colds.   We have some horse gram in our store cupboard and have decided to make a weekly dish to tide us through the winter and try to combat the many winter viruses that afflict us.  This is the first dish in the horse gram series with more to follow.  Horse gram is a hard pulse and takes very long to cook, so remember to soak the horse gram at least  for 8 hours prior to cooking it.

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What do I need to make it?

  • 1 cup pre soaked  horse gram
  • A pinch of turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • A pinch of asafoetida
  • 1/4 tsp mustard seeds
  • 3-4 dried red chillies
  • 8-10 curry leaves
  • 3 tbsp freshly grated coconut
  • Juice of half a lime
  • Salt to taste

How much will I make?

Serves 4-6 side portions

How do I make it?

Pressure cook the horse gram with a pinch of turmeric powder and two cups of water. Once cooked drain  any excess water and set aside. (Do not throw away the cooking liquor as this can be used to make a delicious and healing  horse gram soup (recipe to follow)).  Heat oil in a wok.   Add a pinch of asafoetida and the mustard seeds.  Once the mustard seeds crackle add the dried red chillies and the curry leaves. Saute for a couple of minutes before adding the cooked horse gram and salt.  Saute the horse gram for a few minutes, garnish with freshly grated coconut and squeeze the juice of half a lime.  Serve warm.

Salad therapy – roasted corn and coconut

A simple salad to pull together as an accompaniment  or a summer barbecue staple.

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What do I need to make it?

  • 2 ears of corn
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • 1 green chilli chopped
  • 1 small green pepper chopped
  • 3 tbsp grated coconut
  • Handful fresh coriander chopped
  • Juice of half a lime
  • Salt to taste

How much will I make?

Serves 4 as a side dish

How do I make it?

Roast the corn cobs over an open flame and then shuck them once cooled.     Place all the ingredients in a bowl and mix together.

Salad therapy – roast chicken & rocket

We shared with you a simple recipe to use up some of the Christmas leftovers in a hearty corn soup – here’s another recipe using the remainder of the leftover chicken.   What initially started of as a filling for a Vietnamese rice paper roll ended up as a topping for a warm salad (had a bag of rocket leaves that was going to go past it’s expiry date and needed to be used).  In hindsight, we think this would have worked even better on a bed of iceberg lettuce or on some plain boiled Jasmine rice.  We have used the same core ingredients as with the tarragon butter made for the roast chicken (recipe below) and embellished it with more fresh herbs to give it a Vietnamese slant.  We have managed three wholesome meals with one medium sized bird – the humble Christmas roast chicken – the gift that keeps giving 😉

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What do I need to make it?

  • 1 bag of rocket leaves
  • 500 gm shredded roast chicken
  • 2 Thai red chillies chopped
  • 2 long red chillied chopped
  • 4 large closed cup mushrooms sliced
  • 3 cloves of garlic minced
  • Handful of fresh tarragon chopped
  • Handful of Thai basil, mint and coriander leaves chopped
  • 100 gms of peanuts roasted, skinned and pounded to a coarse powder in pestle and mortar
  • Knob of butter
  • Salt to taste

How much will I make?

2 large portions or 4 side salads

How do I make it?

Melt a knob of butter in a large frying pan and saute chopped garlic for 30 seconds.   Add the chillies and stir for another minutes before adding the chopped tarragon and sliced mushroom.   Saute over medium heat for a few minutes – sprinkle some salt and then add the shredded chicken.   Warm the chicken through for five minutes – switch of the heat and add the remaining fresh chopped herbs.   To serve, place a generous portion of the warm chicken on a bed of rocket and garnish with the ground roasted peanuts.  Enjoy.