Posted in I'm Enjoying

I’m Enjoying…. in May 2013

I’m Enjoying….

….Jamie, Jamie, Jamie.

Jamie Oliver Salad & Parcels with book
After finally splashing out on a fancy food processor what better recipes to put it to the test with than with ‘Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals’ – Delicious, Nutritious, Super-Fast Food.  So far I’ve tried 3 recipes from the book with great success.  Now maybe it’s my faffing and to-ing and fro-ing from cupboards to fridge and back again but it takes me 15 minutes to get organised and then I’m ready to cook, so for me it’s more like 30 minute meals but I’m more than happy with that.  So far I’ve tried out three recipes.  The ‘Blackened Chicken –  San Fran Quinoa Salad’ is amazing, the ‘Modern Greek Salad – Spinach, Chickpea & Feta Parcels’ are superb for the vegetarian in your life and finally the ‘Golden Chicken – Braised Greens & Potato Gratin’ is a winner for midweek family dining.  If you’re simply after some tasty salad recipes then I’ve reproduced Jamie’s San Fran Quinoa Salad and the Modern Greek Salad on previous posts on the blog.

….Dunnes Stores.
Paul Costelloe Platter Dunnes Stores

Dunnes Stores has continuously developed and improved their homeware department over the past number of years and having designer Paul Costelloe on board – who is designing menswear for them now too – is an absolute coup.  I’m loving his rustic/mediterranean influenced pottery range that’s in-store now.  Their Carolyn Donnely e c l e c t i c range is well worth checking out too.

….Baking Bread.
Knorr Gluten Free Focaccia

Knorr kindly sent me a selection of their Create More sauces and Knorr Professional Mixed Herbs Puree.  I made this gluten-free focaccia studded with olives, sun-dried tomatoes and rosemary and generously basted with their Professional Mixed Herbs puree mixed with some rapeseed oil.  We like to dip our bread into a dish of olive oil with a floating slick of balsamic vinegar.

….Irish Tomatoes

Irish Flavorita Tomatoes

I bought these delicious tomatoes in my local SuperValu last year and I’m delighted to see them back on the shelves again.  They’re called ‘Irish Flavorita Tomatoes’ and as the name suggests they are lovely and sweet and flavoursome.

….Slipping into Summer
Harissa Hummus on board

At last the sun has decided to breakthrough here in Ireland and after a long hard winter and a distinctly chilly Spring we’ve been given a tease of summer lately with a little bit of heat.  As summer approaches I’m embracing salads and Jamie’s super easy recipes as previously mentioned.  I’ve also experimented with another hummus, this time flavoured with harissa paste that has been lingering in the fridge for an unknown amount of time so its time to use it up!  This Harissa Hummus is a quick and easy  dip, perfect to entertain with, served with some spicy pita chips and something refreshing, crisp, white and chilled.  Now that to me says summer.

Talk to you in June! Enjoy, x  Sheila

Posted in What's for Dinner Mom?

Jamie Oliver’s Modern Greek Salad

I love having little ‘aha’ moments and I had one of those while making this salad.  Jamie said to ‘Scratch a fork down the length of the cucumber all the way round……’ before slicing and lo and behold this produces very prettily bevel-edged slices.
Sliced Cucumber
So that’s how they do it, aha.
Jamie Greek Salad in Dunnes Platter
The ‘Modern Greek Salad’ comes from a recipe in ‘Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals’ cookbook and this particular recipe is accompanied by ‘Spinach, Chickpea & Feta Parcels’ in the book.
Jamie Picture Mod Greek Salad
Jamie Oliver Salad & Parcels with book

I thought the salad was deliciously refreshing and if you’ve a good sharp knife then there is no need to pull out the food processor to do your slicing.
Red Onions Up Close
Jamie Oliver Modern Greek Salad CloseUp
Jamie Oliver’s ‘Modern Greek Salad’ (not exact reproduction):
You will need:
1 cucumber
1 red onion
1 lemon
Handful fresh coriander
Handful fresh mint leaves
20g blanched almonds
Handful of black olives
400g tomatoes (Jamie’s recipe = 650g mixed ripe; I used Irish Flavorita)
1 romaine lettuce (not in my shop so I used 2 baby gem)
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil or rapeseed oil
Method:
Rinse the cucumber, coriander,  mint, tomatoes and lettuce then use kitchen towel to roughly dry them.
‘Scratch a fork down the length of the cucumber all the way round……’ then finely slice.
Peel and finely slice the red onion.
Place the onion and cucumber into a bowl, squeeze over the juice of the lemon and season with some salt.
Finely chop the coriander and mint and add to the onion and cucumber and mix through with a fork to combine.
Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a frying pan over a medium heat and add the almonds and black olives, leave to heat through for a couple of minutes.
Meanwhile slice the tomatoes and arrange on a serving platter.
Slice the lettuce 1cm thick and scatter over the tomatoes.
Scatter over the onion, cucumber and herb mixed followed by a drizzle of 1 tbsp of oil.
Top with the heated almonds and olives from the pan.
Enjoy.
‘Til next time, Sheila.

Posted in What's for Dinner Mom?

Jamie Oliver’s San Fran Quinoa Salad

Taken from the ‘Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals’ cookbook this salad is accompanied in the book by ‘Blackened Chicken.’  This was a recipe that suited my tastebuds perfectly but my kids thought it too ‘adulty’ so it might be one to reserve for a dinner party or a nice lunch with more sophisticated company than ungrateful sprogs.
Jamie Oliver Blackened Chicken
If you’re new to Quinoa you might like to know that it is pronounced keen-wah.  It’s virtues are also raved about by Goop front woman Gwyneth Paltrow – you know the one, she writes cookbooks and does a bit of acting on the side.

Jamie Oliver’s ‘San Fran Quinoa Salad’ (not an exact reproduction)
You will need:

300g Quinoa
1 red chilli
100g baby spinach
4 spring onions
1 bunch fresh coriander
1 bunch fresh mint
1 ripe large mango
2 limes
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil or rapeseed oil
1 ripe avocado (Mine wasn’t ripe enough so left it out)
50g feta cheese (I used 100g)
1 punnet of cress (I couldn’t get  hold of this so left it out)
Method:
Place the quinoa in a saucepan, just cover with boiling water and simmer with a lid on while you prepare the salad (take care not to let it dry out completely and top up with water if necessary).
Put the red chilli, baby spinach, spring onions, coriander and  leaves of the mint into the processor and blitz until finely chopped.
Peel and cut the mango into cubes.  Halve the avocado and remove the stone.
Drain and rinse the cooked quinoa under a cold tap and drain again.
Place the quinoa on a large serving platter then mix through the blitzed spinach mixture.
Squeeze over the juice of the two limes and drizzle over the 2 tsbp of oil and mix again.
Top with the cubed mango.
Using a spoon scoop out curls of avocado and top the salad with this and crumbled feta.
Snip the cress on the top.
{picture above shows salad topped with blackened chicken – simply  chicken rubbed with smoked paprika & allspice and then pan-fried before being sliced up}
Enjoy,
‘Til next time, Sheila