Thursday, 14 August 2014

Gluten free "cheese" crackers with fennel ... and some gnomes

 For a while now I have been thinking of trying some GF biscuits - but savoury ones, because we're not a very sweet household.  Today I had a chance to try some.  The first batch was over cooked - but later ones came out better.  Today I made gnomes, cacti and guitars - but you can make whatever you fancy.

My decorated effort was a gnome - with sundried tomato hat and jacket, olive taponade wellies, olive eyes and cashew cheese beard.  Cashew cheese recipe - more or less this - from Chocolate and Zucchini.
The biscuits I made up myself ... )all ingerdients are "ish"

120g gluten free plain flour
75g polenta
salt and pepper
80g cold margarine (olive oil spread)
1 tbsp fennel seeds
1 tsp mustard
1 tsp crushed garlic
cold water

Rub fat into dry ingredients, herbs and spices.
When it looks like breadcrumbs, add enough cold water, and stir/kneed to bring it together.

When it is pastry-like - roll out between 2 pieces of floured greaseproof paper - cut out - lay onto greaseproof paper lined baking trays, pierce with a fork, and bake in pre-heated oven (about 10-12 minutes)

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Peanut spicy vegetable casserole with cheesy noodles

Years ago I was cooked something similar to this by a Nigerian friend.  It had chicken in it, and it was very very hot - and it was served with rice.  A few years later (and still some years ago) I was served a veggie version (green beans, tomatoes and peanut butter with chili) with the added cheesy noodles.  It is now a real "go to" comfort food - the lovely silky mild noodles with the spicy and sweet peanutty sauce/casserole (with or without chicken).

olive oil
chopped onion
chopped celery
chopped mushrooms
chopped green beans
chili flakes
peanut butter
chopped tomatoes
salt and pepper
lime juice

grated cheese

Sweat off onions and celery, in olive oil, until a bit soft.   Then add other veg, chili flakes, peanut butter and garlic.  Add some water and cover.  Simmer until softish, then add tomatoes.  Stew until soft and delish (you could steam the green beans and toss them in the sauce later, for a different texture).

Cook noodles.  When cooked stir in grated cheese and butter until noodles are all coated.

Serve, and squirt with lime juice.

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Re-imagined salad nicoise

The end of the veg box included courgettes, cabbage, green beans and tomatoes.  The new veg box brought lots of things, but including some nice new potatoes - so I re-imagines a salad nicoise - green beans in a tasty sauce - new potatoes and boiled eggs (could have added tuna, but preferred to stay veggie today).  Also, a spoonful of steamed cabbage - we have so much, and it's really nice, so why not?

Easy bits, boil - washed and chopped, diced new potatoes, steam - green beans and chopped cabbage on top.

Gently cook chopped celery, courgette, shallot and tomatoes in olive oil with garlic, wild rosemary and a few chili flakes.  Cook them slowly, stirring now and again, until they are all soft and silky in the olive oil.  Boil eggs - peel shells off.

Mix beans and veg sauce - serve with potatoes, eggs and cabbage.

Scoff - have seconds!

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

Potato, cauliflower and courgette curry with rice

Stressful day (again) and latish home - but a rummage in the fridge and cupboards and this was on the table in about 45 minutes.


Olive oil
1 onion, chopped
curry spice mix (whatever sort you have really)
crushed garlic
4 potatoes, diced
1 courgette, diced
1/2 cauliflower
tin tomatoes
frozen peas

rice - cooked according to packet instructions.

1.  Sautee onion, in olive oil, until a bit soft.
2.  Add spice mix, garlic and potatoes, stir around.
3.  Add courgette cauliflower florets, stir around.
4.  Add stock, make sure it's not catching on the bottom of the pan and leave to simmer for a while.
5.  After 20 minutes or so taste and adjust seasoning - add a teaspoon of sugar if it is too hot.
6.  Keep adding stock if it looks a bit dry.
7.  Add a tin of tomatoes, simmer.
8.  a few minutes before serving stir in frozen peas.

Scoff. Delicious.

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Lentil spaghetti

Some days you need comfort food!  Today was one of those days.

Quick search in the fridge and cupboard - and knew this would be tasty and filling.

Spaghetti sauce

olive oil
1 onion, chopped
Celery, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
1-2 courgettes chopped
Italian herbs
chili flakes
crushed garlic
2 handfuls of red lentils
about a glass of red wine
6 tomatoes, chopped
mustard (american hotdog mustard, or hot mustard and a tsp of sugar)
salt and pepper
grated parmesan to taste

spaghetti (gluten free for us)
salted water

So ...

1.  Sweat chopped onion in olive oil.  After a minute or so add chopped carrot and celery.
2.  When cooking has started add herbs, garlic and lentils.  Stir
3.  Add a glass of red wine and some water/stock.  Simmer.
4.  Add chopped courgette.  Simmer some more.
5.  When lentils are swollen and getting soft (10-15 mins) - add chopped tomatoes and seasoning.
6.  Put spaghetti into boiling water.
7. Simmer sauce and cook spaghetti.

... when done serve with (or without) grated parmesan

Friday, 18 July 2014

Mushroom and onion pasta, chopped salad - oh, and some steak

After making the carnivores suffer yesterday I relented and made them steak.  However, also needed the extras to be gluten free and go with salmon for the pescatarean.  So, I thought - some tasty mushroomy pasta for carbs and a fridge full of veg just begged to be eaten - best way, chop it all up and mix it togther, American's would call it chopped salad, so lets go with that.

It all went down extremely well.

Chopped salad

Frozen petit pois
olive oil
orange juice

Chop everything up into 1/2 cm dice - squeeze on juice of half an orange (I didn't have any lemons or limes) and a slosh of olive oil, season, stir.

Mushroom Pasta Salad

1 onion, chopped
6 large mushrooms, chopped
olive oil
pasta shells (gluten free, or otherwise!)

Fry onion in olive oil,  just as it is starting to caramelise add chopped mushrooms and garlic.  Fry until mushrooms are just soft.
Boil water, add pasta ... when cooked, drain.
Add splosh of olive oil, mushroom mix and fresh oregano and mix through.  Grind on plenty of black pepper.


Oil the meat, not the pan - grinding of black pepper.  Fry, in hot pan for a minute or so each side.

Scoff - one person had 4 helpings of the pasta!

Thursday, 17 July 2014

Tomato, red pepper and pesto crumble

Still got a bit of a glut of tomatoes and red pepper, but fancied something a bit mediteraanean - this worked - well, I thought so.  There were some bits of red pepper left on one plate - but I base this on young adult vegetable phobia... the crust was polished off by all.

So, for the crumble

olive oil
1 onion, chopped
chopped celery
crushed garlic
Chopped red pepper
6 large tomatoes, chopped
a little vegetable stock

Usual thing, sweat down onion and celery, then add garlic and other veg.  Simmer until soft, add water/stock if it's going dry/thick.

Crumble topping

rolled oats
grated cheese (I used cheddar)
2 big spoons of pesto
olive oil

Mix together.

Put the tomato mixture in an oven proof dish, top with crumble and bake for 30 minutes, or until golden.

Boil new potatoes, steaming the veg on top.

Ta-dah!  I though it was very tasty.  I think the meat eaters wanted a steak with it.