Humous a delicious Mediterranean Dip

April 29th, 2013


1 400g (13oz) tin of chickpeas, rinsed and drained
2 Cloves Garlic
3 tablespoons lemon juice
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons sesame oil
2 \tablespoons soy sauce
Freshly ground black pepper

Put all ingredients in food processor and blitz until smooth.
add additional pepper, soy or lemon juice to taste

As a variation you could add either 1 tablespoon of toasted sesame seeds or 1-2 tablespoons of tahini.

Serve in a bowl with a little olive oil drizzled on top and a sprinkling of chilli powder or paprika.
Eat with crudities, spread on oatcakes, wholemeal toasts or wholemeal crackers.

Quick Salmon Dinner

April 29th, 2013

Heat oven to 180 degrees.

While this is happening, take a square of foil that will be big enough to wrap your salmon in.

In the middle of the square, lay down some veg, whatever you want, but I find thinly sliced carrots, leeks, fennel, cucumber, courgette as nice options (you don’t have to use all - vary it for different meals).
Lay your salmon on top of the veg, season it, lay a slice of lemon on top of the fish and drizzle some olive oil over the top. Then fold the two opposite ends of foil towards each other and wrap it up. Then take the other ends, fold them up and crunch them up so that any fluid won’t leak out.

By now, the oven should be warm, slide the foil parcel onto a baking tray and into the oven for 20-25 minutes.

Open the foil carefully and serve the salmon with the veg in the parcel with some more side veg, potatoes, rice.
Delicious and in less time than you can go and get a take-away!

Snapper in Banana Leaf

April 29th, 2013

This method for grilling fish uses a banana leaf to hold the fish together, steam it to perfection, while allowing the flavor to gently soak into the package. This is a great way of grilling fish that is delicate because the banana leaf holds it all together and lets you add anything you want to the packet. You can buy banana leaves from Asian or Caribbean food shops.
Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes


2 pounds snapper
2 tablespoons fresh coriander root, chopped
1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, crushed
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 large banana leaf
vegetable oil


Combine garlic, black pepper, coriander root and ginger in a blender or food processor. Mix into a paste. Add soy sauce and continue blending until well mixed. Set aside. Clean and pat dry the snapper with a paper towel. Rub mixture over the surface of the fish. Set aside for about 30 minutes. Preheat grill. Take a banana leaf large enough to wrap the fish (you can cut up the fish if you can’t find a large enough leaf) and wash it thoroughly. Blanch the banana leaf in hot water for a few seconds to soften it. With a knife or scissors remove the thick spine from the leaf and place it on a working surface shiny side down. Brush vegetable oil over the part of the leaf the will be in contact with the fish. Place the fish on the banana leaf and fold leaf to completely enclose the fish. Secure with toothpicks or skewers.
Place the package on a medium hot grill and cook on each side for about 8 to 10 minutes. Watch carefully to prevent the banana leaf from burning. It will blacken in parts but it shouldn’t be allowed to burn through. After about 16 minutes remove the packet from the grill to a place where you can work on it and gently open enough to test the fish for doneness. The fish should flake easy with a fork and have an opaque appearance through to the center. If the fish isn’t done, secure the package and return to the grill. When the fish is done transfer it to a serving platter and serve. It’s more dramatic if you open the banana leaf at the table

Swordfish a la Siciliana

April 29th, 2013

Preparation Time: 15 Minutes
Cooking Time: 20 Minutes

Serves 6


3 ounces raisins
5 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 pound ripe tomatoes, diced
10 green olives, pitted and minced
2 ounces pine nuts
1/4 cup capers
2 pounds swordfish steaks
salt and pepper to taste


Soak raisins in lukewarm water for 30 minutes. Drain and set aside. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
Heat olive oil in a large saucepan or skillet over high heat. Saute onion and garlic until soft. Stir in raisins, tomatoes, olives, pine nuts and capers. Cover pan, reduce heat to medium and cook for 15 minutes.
Season the steaks with salt and pepper. Place in a lightly oiled baking dish and cover with the cooked sauce. Bake in preheated oven for 15 to 20 minutes, until steaks are firm.

Quinoa with Toasted Almonds & Dried Cranberries

April 29th, 2013

Quinoa With Toasted Almonds & Dried Cranberries

Quick & Easy!

This quinoa stove top casserole recipe is delicious by itself, and goes well with moist curry dishes, or stews and casseroles

Not boring! Quinoa has lots of flavor, and the veggie cube, cinnamon & bay leaf, almonds and cranberries add even more flavor. And, of course quinoa is always gluten free.

4 - 6 Servings: This quinoa stove top casserole cooks quickly because the almonds and quinoa are roasted, and then boiling water is added. The quinoa should be drained well before roasting.


1 cup quinoa
1/2 cup slivered blanched almonds
1 tsp light olive oil
1 1/2 cups boiling water
1 vegetable stock cube
1/2 tsp salt
1 cinnamon stick
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup dried cranberries

1.Soak the quinoa 15 minutes in cold water
2.Stir the quinoa with your hand, pour off most of the water and drain through a fine mesh strainer
3.Shake dry in the strainer, then set the strainer over a bowl.
4.Heat a wide bottomed pan on medium heat and add the light olive oil
5.Stir and toast the sliced almonds until golden, then remove from pan
6.Add the quinoa. Stir and toast until dry and turning color
7.Add boiling water, veggie cube, salt, bay leaf and cinnamon stick, and dried cranberries
8.Bring back to boil, cover, turn the heat to simmer, cook for 10 minutes or until all the water is absorbed
9.Remove from heat and allow to sit five minutes with the lid on
10.Fluff gently with a fork and serve

Roasted Root Vegetables

April 29th, 2013

Use a wide, shallow casserole or baking tray so that the vegetables roast evenly.
Preheat the oven to 175 degrees C (340 degrees F)

3.5 oz (100g) leeks diagonally sliced
3.5 oz (100g) parsnips
5 oz (150g) Sweet potato
5 oz (150g) celeriac
7 oz (200g) thinly sliced red onion
3.5 oz (100g) carrot
3.5 oz (100g) beetroot
4 whole cloves of garlic (keep skin intact)
1 teaspoon caraway seeds
5 tablespoons olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
1x 13 oz (400g) tin chick-peas, drained and rinsed
Drizzle of lemon juice and olive oil

Cut all the vegetable except the onion an leeks into even sized chunks.
Put them into the casserole/baking tray with the garlic and the caraway seeds.
Toss them in the olive oil to coat them and season with the black pepper.
Roast for about 1 hour, turning occasionally.
When almost done, fold in the rinsed and drained chickpeas and return to the oven for a further 10 minutes.

Before serving, drizzle with a little more olive oil and lemon juice to taste and serve.

Chicken,with Roasted Fennel & Citrus Rice

April 29th, 2013

2 tsp fennel seeds
1 Tbs freshly chopped oregano
1 garlic clove peeled and crushed
salt & freshly ground pepper
4 chicken quarters
1/2 lemon finely sliced
1 fennel bulb trimmed
2 tsp olive oil
4 plum tomatoes
25g/1 oz stoned green olives

For the rice:
225g/8 oz long grain rice I usually use a blend of different ‘rices’. My favorite is a brown basmati and wild rice mix.
finely grated rind and juice of 1/2 lemon
150ml orange juice
450ml/3/4 pint boiling chicken or vegetable stock

To garnish:
fennel fronds
orange slices

1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees C/ 400 degrees F/ Gas mark 6.
Gently crush fennel seeds, mix with oregano, garlic, salt and pepper.
Place between the skin and flesh of the chicken breasts, carefully do not to tear the skin. Arrange the lemon slices on top of the chicken.

2. Cut fennel into 8 wedges. Place on baking tray with the chicken. Lightly brush the fennel with the oil. Cook the chicken and fennel on the top shelf of the preheated oven for 10 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, place rice in a 2.3l/4 pint ovenproof dish. Stir in the lemon rind and juice, orange juice and stock. Cover with a lid and place on the middle shelf of the oven

4 Reduce the oven temperature to 160 degrees C/ 350 degrees F/ Gas mark 4. Cook the chicken for 40 minutes more, turning the fennel wedges and lemon slices once. Deseed and chop the tomatoes. Add to the tray and cook for 5-10 minutes. Remove from oven.

5. When cooled slightly, remove chicken skin and discard. Garnish with fennel fronds, orange slices and serve

6. Fluff rice, and sprinkle stoned olives over dish. Garnish with fennel fronds, orange slices

Tuna Steak with Lime, Sweet Peppers and Tomato

April 29th, 2013

This is a dish to exhibit the meatiness and sweet flavours of tuna. In this simple recipe, all the flavours compliment each other perfectly. There are some zingy sweet-sour notes played by the vinegar, lime and sugar.

4tbsp olive oil
4 shallots, finely chopped
1 red pepper and 1 yellow pepper, stem, ribs and seeds removed
1tbsp red wine vinegar
1 firm dark green lime, grated rind (no pith) and 2tsp juice
2tsp sugar
4 firm, ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded and diced
salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 tuna steaks, weighing about 175g each
about 16 basil leaves, torn up

Heat half the oil in a medium saucepan and soften the shallots in it for 5 minutes. Cut the peppers into 1cm dice, add to the pan and cook gently, covered, for 10 minutes. Add the vinegar, lime rind, lime juice and sugar. Cook a further 5 minutes, uncover and let the liquid evaporate. This should only take 1-2 minutes. Add the tomatoes and cook under the lid for a further 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and season lightly with salt. You can make this ahead up to this point.

Meanwhile, heat the grilling pan to very hot. Brush the steaks with some of the remaining oil, season with salt and pepper, and cook for a couple of minutes each side, depending on how thick they are. This would be sufficient for a thickness of 15mm. Tuna is much better cooked rare, like (beef) steak.

Have the sauce very hot and stir in the basil leaves. Place a tuna steak on each of 4 plates and pour the sauce around, finishing off with the remaining olive oil.

Perfect with salad or steamed greens.

Roasted Vegetables with a twist

April 29th, 2013

Roasted vegetables with a twist.


1 small butternut squash, cubed
2 red bell peppers, seeded and diced
1 sweet potato, peeled and cubed
3 baking potatoes, cubed
1 red onion, quartered
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
salt and freshly ground black pepper


Preheat oven to 475 degrees F (245 degrees C).
In a large bowl, combine the squash, red bell peppers, sweet potato, and potatoes. Separate the red onion quarters into pieces, and add them to the mixture.
In a small bowl, stir together thyme, rosemary, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Toss with vegetables until they are coated. Spread evenly on a large roasting pan.
Roast for 35 to 40 minutes in the preheated oven, stirring every 10 minutes, or until vegetables are cooked through and browned.

Quick Beef Stroganoff

April 29th, 2013

Quick Beef Stroganoff

3 minute steaks, cut into 1/2 inch strips
2 Tablespoons oil
1 onion, sliced
1 clove garlic, crushed (optional)
1 can of mushroom soup
1 cup plain yogurt
3 ounce can of mushrooms
2 Tablespoons ketchup
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

Brown the steak strips in the oil. Add the onion and garlic. Stir fry for 5 minutes until onion is translucent. Combine remaining ingredients, add to meat. Heat on low temperature until flavors blend. (Do not boil.) Serve this easy quick Beef Stroganoff over a melody of steamed green vegetables.