I have been spending some more time with my spiraliser, which resulted in my trying out this cool recipe from Oh My Veggies. The flavours are so fresh and zingy and it’s 100% gluten free and vegan friendly. And like most spiralized recipes it doesn’t take very long to make at all!
The secret to this couscous with a kick is the spicy harissa paste in its dressing.
Summer couscous salad
125ml chicken stock
200g tinned chickpeas, drained
2 courgettes cut at a slant
150g cherry tomatoes, halved
250g haloumi cheese, thickly sliced
For the dressing
60ml olive oil
Juice of half a lime
1 cloved of garlic finely chopped
Pinch of sugar
1 teaspoon of harissa paste
Put the couscous in a bowl and pour over the stock. Cover and set aside for 5 minutes. Mix together all the dressing ingredients. Stir the couscous with a fork and mix in the chickpeas and dressing. Set aside.
Put a little olive oil in a frying pan over a medium-high heat. Fry the courgette slices until golden brown on both sides and then set aside on a piece of kitchen paper.
Add a little more olive oil to the pan, return to the heat and then put the tomatoes in the pan cut side down. Fry for a couple of minutes until lightly brown. Set aside with the courgettes.
Wipe the pan out, add a little more olive oil, return to the heat and fry the haloumi until golden on both sides.
Arrange the couscous, courgettes, tomatoes and haloumi onto two plates and serve.
This is a great mid-week meal that can be thrown together with very little effort – in fact my slightly less experienced husband made this according to instructions while I was out for a run. You can serve it with some brown rice to make a vegetarian meal or it would make a great side at a BBQ.
Warm roast vegetable, chickpea and feta salad
1 red onion
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
200g sliced button mushrooms
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 teaspoon of dried oregano
1 tin chickpeas, drained
50g feta or goat’s cheese, crumbled
Handful of fresh parsley, finely chopped
Preheat your oven to 200 C. Chop the courgettes, aubergines and red onion into 1 inch chunks and put in a large bowl. Add the mushrooms, garlic, olive oil, garlic and a little salt and pepper to the bowl. Mix well so that all the veg is coated in oil. Line a large baking dish with foil and spread the veg across it evenly. Pop in the oven and bake for 45 minutes.
When the veg is ready, allow to cool for about 10 minutes. Then add the chickpeas, feta and parsley and mix gently.
Serves 4 when served with rice.
As the weather warms up, I am finding myself craving salads more and more for dinner. I am not much of a leaf eater though. The best way to put me off a salad is by putting in piles and piles of leaves, which is why I love this hearty salad, which made a great main meal for Paul. I and it packs both a flavour and colour, which is precisely what a spring salad should do.
Grilled asparagus and courgette salad with haloumi, semi-dried tomatoes and basil oil
Adapted from cooksister.com, originally a Yotam Ottolenghi recipe
350g cherry tomatoes, halved
24 asparagus spears
2 large courgettes
250g haloumi, sliced into 0.5mm thick slices
A large handful of rocket
A little flour
For the basil oil
60ml olive oil
1 garlic clove, roughly chopped
25g fresh basil leaves
1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar
Pinch of salt
Pinch of black pepper
Preheat your oven to 170 C (160 C for a fan oven). Toss the cherry tomatoes in a couple of tablespoons of olive oil and season with a good whack of salt and pepper. Spread the tomatoes out skin side down on a baking tray lined with baking parchment paper. Bake in the centre of the oven for 50 minutes.
In the meantime, bring a large pan of water to the boil. Trim the hard woody ends off the asparagus and add them to the boiling water. Boil for 4 minutes. Then drain the asparagus and put them in a bowl of cold water. Drain and repeat until the asparagus spears are cold. Toss the asparagus spears in a couple of tablespoons of olive oil and season with a good pinch of salt and pepper. Set aside.
Cut the ends off the courgettes and slice very thinly using a vegetable peeler or mandolin. Toss the slices in a couple of tablespoons of olive oil and season with a good pinch of salt and pepper.
Now grill the asparagus spears and courgette slices. You can either do this using a hot griddle pan on the stove top, or like I did it, using a George Foreman grill or similar. Either way you want to grill the veggies until they are just tender and have those sexy grill marks on them. No more than 2 or 3 minutes at a time. If you are going to use a pan I would suggest adding a little oil to it to make sure things don’t stick. Set aside the veg to cool a little.
Lightly dust the haloumi slices in flour and grill for 2 minutes on each side in your griddle plan or on the George Foreman. Set aside to cool a little.
To make the basil oil, put all the ingredients in a blender and whizz until smooth.
Arrange the rocket leaves in the bottom of a large salad bowl or platter. Arrange the remaining veg and haloumi over the top. Drizzle with basil oil
Serves 2 – 3 as a main course or 4 -6 as a side.
This is an easy, cheap and very healthy veggie recipe that packs a real flavour punch. It also keeps really well so it’s great for making a big batch and then bringing in to work for lunch.
1 onion, chopped
1 courgette, sliced
1 carrot, peeled and chopped
1 red or yellow pepper, roughly chopped
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 small can sweet corn (or equivalent frozen)
200g baby tomatoes, cut in half
1 tsp chilli powder
1 tsp coriander
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 standard size can mixed pulses (or chickpeas or kidney beans)
500ml vegetable stock
500ml tomato passata
2/3 cup bulghar wheat
Heat a little olive oil in a large saucepan. Add onion, courgette, carrot, pepper and garlic and sauté over a medium heat for 7 – 8 minutes. Add the corn, baby tomatoes and spices and cook for 3 more minutes. This makes a pretty spicy chilli but if you want your head blown off you can add more chilli powder.
Add the pulses, stock, passata and bulghar wheat and bring to the boil. Simmer for 15 minutes (or however long it tells you your bulghar wheat will take to cook on the packet. It can vary).
Allow to cool and thicken a little before serving.
Serves 4 – 6.
If you’re looking for a Starbucks-style cakey muffin, these are probably not for you but if you want something wholesome and healthy for breakfast, I’d recommend these. They’re super moist and keep very well.
Courgette and see muffins
Source: Adapted from Baking Mad with Eric Lanard
225g wholemeal flour
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons cinnamon
A pinch of salt
200ml semi-skimmed milk
4 tablespoons vegetable oil (I like to use grapeseed but any lightly flavoured oil will work… don’t use olive oil though)
5 tablespoons clear honey
150g (about 3) courgette, coarsely grated
50g seeds (Pumpkin or sunflower or sesame or linseed or a mixture, whatever you’ve got)
A couple of tablespoons of oats
Heat the oven to 180 C (or 170 for a fan oven). Line a 12 hole muffin tin with paper cases. Mix together the flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon in a large bowl. In a separate bowl mix together the milk, eggs oil, honey and courgette. Fold the wet ingredients into the dry and mix until just combined. Spoon the mixture into the paper cases so that they are 2/3 full to leave room to rise. Sprinkle the top of each muffin with some seeds and oats. Bake for 25 – 30 minutes. Cool in the tin for 5 minutes and then place on a wire rack to cool completely.
Can be served with a little plain yoghurt and honey if you want to jazz them up. Makes 12.