Sunday, 14 September 2008

not rocket science guacamole salad

guacamole salad with couscous and apple

i accidentally bought a bag of 20 avocados for a quid at the market at the end of the day ... so expect a rush of guacamole. here i added it to some leftover couscous, with a bit of apple for fresh crunch, which you can of course leave out if you fear fruit in salads (and yeah, yeah, i know the tomato's really a fruit). you could also add in something toasted - pine nuts or sunflower seeds - for extra protein if you were feeling like heating something.

  • 1/2 small bowl couscous, already rehydrated with some veg stock and cooled
  • 1/2 a ripe avocado, chopped into quite fat chunks
  • 1/4 - 1/2 red chilli (depending on how much of a wuss you are), finely chopped
  • 1/2 granny smith apple, chopped (you could use any variety, except golden delicious cos they are horrible)
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • handful rocket, roughly chopped
  • squish of lime juice
  • splash balsamic
  • salt, pepper

  1. place the couscous in a bowl and toss in the rest of the ingredients. This ain't rocket science.

Tuesday, 9 September 2008

leftova tortilla

tortilla leftova
a spanish-esque tortilla is a proper recycling way to use up the random stuff hanging round the fridge - basically all you need on top is eggs, potatoes and onions. it takes a while but it's really nice the next day for lunch ...this serves 2 with some leftover for lunch the next day, or no lunch if your other half porks it all.

  • 6 eggs, free range naturally. i used medium, but don't stress if they are larger or smaller
  • 2 onions
  • 5-6 medium potatoes (use any cooked leftover ones if you want - just add them later in the process)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 red chilli (optional)
  • leftover veg - i had some borderline spinach but you could use anything
  • salt & pepper

  1. Chop the onion and put in a small squat frying pan to soften in olive oil over medium heat for about 5 mins
  2. If you're using raw potatoes, chop small and bung into onions
  3. Add the chopped garlic and chilli, salt and pepper and fry gently for about 15 mins until the potatoes are cooked
  4. Add your random veg and stir to cook
  5. Beat all the egss in a large bowl
  6. Once the veg is cooked, tip everything out of the frying pan into the eggs and mix well. If you're using cooked potato, add it now.
  7. Sloop the eggy mixture back into the pan and turn the heat down very low.
  8. Leave for 15-20 mins until set on the bottom. Either slide onto a plate and flip upside down back into the pan, or - much easier - put the pan under the grill to cook the top.
  9. Serve in wedges.

Friday, 5 September 2008

spinach sort-of pesto = spesto? spinesto? spinachesto?

spinach sort-of pesto = spesto? spinesto? spinachesto?

pulverise spinach, especially spinach that's looking a bit sorry for itself, with toasted seeds, lemon, oil and garlic for an irridescent sauce - here i bunged it on some egg noodles but it's also good with pasta, or simply as a dresssing for veg.

  • 1/2 bag spinach - about 100g, plus any other nearly-dodgy salad knocking around - rocket works well
  • juice of half a lemon
  • handful sunflower seeds (or pine nuts or any other tasty nuts you have that need using up)
  • glug of olive oil
  • clove garlic
  • spinkling dried chilli
  • salt, pepper
  1. toast the seeds (or nuts) lightly in a frying pan. if you burn them, you'll have to chuck them out because they taste really nasty.
  2. once they're toasted, bung in a food processor or liquidiser. put the olive oil in the still-warm frying pan and lightly fry the garlic - again, if it overcooks it'll be bitter so keep an eye on it. cooking the garlic takes the edge off...
  3. place everything else in the processor and squish on high until it's a sauce. serve ...

Wednesday, 3 September 2008

tomato³ sauce

tomato³ sauce

a lush tomato sauce, given depth with 3 types of tomatoes (canned, sundried and pureed) and various green flavours chucked in ... ace with pasta or spread on a pizza base. The pomegranate molasses brings out the sweetness of the tomatoes but it's probably only on sale in poncy-ish delis so you can use sugar instead. It's also a good recipe in which to hide veg that you or your recalcitrant other halves might dislike (I hid half a marrow in this one).

  1. medium onion, chopped
  2. 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  3. teaspoon of capers, chopped
  4. handful of green olives, chopped
  5. sprinkling dried chilli
  6. sprinkling of herbes de provence
  7. can of tomatoes
  8. large handful sundried tomatoes (6-8)
  9. teaspoon tomato puree
  10. any spare veg that needs eating up
  11. pinch of sugar or glug of pomegranate molasses
  12. salt & pepper to taste

  • If your sundried tomatoes are dried (rather than in oil), cover them with hot water and leave to sit for a few minutes.
  • Heat a glug of olive oil over a lowish heat and fry the onions for a few mins until soft
  • Turn up the heat and chuck in the garlic - stiring to prevent it burning and tasting horrible.
  • When you can smell the garlic, add the capers, olives, chilli and dried herbs and stir for a further minute.
  • Add the can of tomatoes, tomato puree, chopped sundried tomatoes and sugar or molasses. If you've soaked the sundried tomatoes, bung the tomatoey water in too.
  • Add the requiring-hiding veg and stir together.
  • Let simmer for at least 20 mins ,stirring occasionally, to go all gloopy and delicious. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Use with your favourite pasta, bung in a lasagne or spread on a pizza base.

Monday, 1 September 2008

confusingly tasty cottage sprout salad

cottage sprout salad

i wasn't going to blog this, cos it didn't taste that interesting until i added the last ingredient - the caramelised onions, which really sorted out the flavours ... and even made plain cottage cheese vaguely edible.

  1. a medium onion
  2. large handful sprouts (i had cress, mustard, beansprouts)
  3. 2 tbsp plain cottage cheese
  4. 1 tsp capers
  5. sprinkling dried chilli

  • chop the onion and spread on a plate. bung in the microwave for at least 5 mins on high to caramelise.
  • put the sprouts in a bowl, add the chopped capers and cottage cheese. add the chilli, if using, and squish it all together.
  • when the microwave goes bing, stir in the warm onions. the sweetness of the onions balances the tartness of the sprouts.... mmmm.