Tag Archives: feta

If I only knew what that ‘something’ was

God has all the time in the world.
~ Antoni Gaudí

Medley ingredients:
Roasted kumara with cinnamon and nutmeg.
Leek rings sautéed with butter.
A handful of fresh pomegranate seeds.
Feta cubes.
Baby spinach, gently wilted.
Fresh mint, chopped.
Squeeze of lemon.
Black pepper.

Something was still missing. Or something that shouldn’t have been there was. Anyone know what? Penny for your thoughts…

Advertisements

Prawns with Orzo, Tomato, Spinach and Feta

Life is a combination of magic and pasta.
~ Federico Fellini

One of the nicest emails you can get whilst travelling and missing your kitchen is an invitation to sample recipes from a (then) soon to be released cookbook. Especially one with such yummy-sounding dishes as “Warm Salad of Lamb, Asparagus, Spring Onions and Pomegranate Seeds with Lentil and Black Olives” and “Rolled Baklava with Orange Syrup and Greek Yoghurt”… I had a hard time deciding what to ask for!

Ultimately, I decided to request for the recipe for the “Prawns with Orzo, Tomato, Spinach and Feta” (original recipe included below) since I like every ingredient in that title and had never cooked orzo before.

It was a pleasure to cook this dish, simple yet good-looking, fresh and full of wonderful smells. I used a deep wok and modified the recipe slightly to suit what we had in our pantry (less spinach than the recipe specified, and herbs from a tube as opposed to fresh) – and used more prawns as I couldn’t find larger ones at the supermarket. Though I am sure it would have tasted even better had I followed the recipe properly, I also like that the recipe is pretty versatile and forgiving!

We had it with a squeeze of balsamic glaze, both pretty on the plate and complementary to the dish (I recommend it). Three of us ate our fill last night and we had plenty left over, which incidentally made for a delicious lunch for me today!

    Ingredients:
    16-20 large prawns, peeled
    Salt and freshly ground pepper
    1 1⁄2 cups orzo
    2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
    2 cloves garlic, smashed and finely chopped
    3 shallots, finely chopped
    9 spring onions, thickly sliced
    1⁄2 cup chicken stock
    5 large tomatoes, roughly chopped 1 cup passata
    200g crumbled feta cheese
    6 cups baby spinach leaves
    Small handful of torn fresh herbs such as dill, mint and parsley
    Extra virgin olive oil
    Method:
    Season prawns with salt and pepper.
    Cook orzo until done, toss in one tablespoon of oil and reserve.
    In a large heavy skillet heat the remaining tablespoon of oil. Add garlic and shallots and sauté for a minute. Add the spring onions and prawns, sear quickly, then remove prawns to reserved orzo. Add chicken stock, tomatoes and passata. Continue to reduce the liquid until mixture has thickened slightly. Season with salt and pepper.
    Return the orzo and prawns, half the feta, and the spinach back into the tomato sauce and toss to combine. As soon as the spinach has wilted, scatter over the remaining feta, fresh herbs and glaze with olive oil.

Thank you, publicity team at The Second Black Dog Cottage Cookbook, for the chance to sample this winning recipe :-)

For more information on The Second Black Dog Cottage Cookbook, visit Phantom House Books or their Facebook page.

Royal food for lazy folk #1

I am simple, complex, generous, selfish, unattractive, beautiful, lazy, and driven.
~ Author unknown

I was lazy tonight.

It would have taken just a few more minutes, and just another pan or two.

But I didn’t want to!

Didn’t want to fry garlic in a skillet, or cut the tails off the beans, or toast the bread, or crumble the feta nicely, or make a perfect whirlpool for my egg.

I thought about doing all those things.

But one word snatched away all good intentions. And that word (or sound, or whatever it is) was: naaaaaaaaaa.

What you do if you’re lazy like me – preheat the oven to 200°C. Get an oven-proof dish of some kind, carelessly throw in some chopped garlic + oil + washed green beans (tails intact) + tinned tomatoes + cinnamon + salt, give it a stir and bake it all up for around 15 minutes. Then poach an egg in salted water, slice some bread, crumble a sliver of feta and eat it all together.

What you do if you’re wiser than me – do the above, but don’t cut corners. “De-tail” and briefly blanch those beans. Fry the garlic, so it doesn’t taste raw and startling in your mouth. Toast your bread. Above all, make a salted whirlpool for your poor poached egg and rescue it the moment it’s ready!

Whatever you do, lazy or not, have yourself a lovely dinner.

The morning is awash with chickpeas

Outside the open window
The morning air is all awash with angels.
~ Richard Purdy Wilbur

You could paint your mornings with coffee and scrambled eggs, or crazy drivers on the motorway, or a harsh bundle of newspapers… a million ways to start the day.

Today, I started mine with a trip to the kitchen to make lunch (to bring to work) – and – chickpeas. I’ve never made anything with them, and they are still relatively new members to my palate in general. I’ve also never had a teaspoon of feta cheese and lemon juice for breakfast before, but it sure is a good idea if you need one.

Lunch will be, from Tessa Kiros’ “Falling Cloudberries”:
#32 Chickpea, Feta & Coriander Salad – Page 81

This is a shortened version of the process:
Chilli, garlic, olive oil & onion – fried.
Chickpeas, crumbled feta, parsley, (skipped the coriander), lemon juice, spring onion, salt, pepper – chopped/prepared/combined.
All of the above – mixed well.
Voila.

The morning air in my kitchen is awash with a very good smell indeed… mmm…

…oops gotta go. Have a great day!