Medium Box Recipes 29/04/2020
Smoky shakshuka to make these cooler mornings a lil’ warmer.
- Peel and dice an onion. Deseed and dice the peppers. Peel and grate some garlic.
- Place an ovenproof pan over a medium heat with a drizzle of oil. Fry the onion and peppers until soft. Add the grated garlic, smoked paprika and chilli flakes (smoked chilli flakes will amp up the smokiness), fry focccr a further minute until fragrant.
- Add some cooked chopped tomatoes/whole peeled tomatoes, and a splash of water, and simmer on a low heat for 8-10 minutes until sticky (add a splash of water if it becomes too thick). Season to taste with salt, pepper and sweetener of choice.
- Now the fun part. Make little holes in the sauce and crack in a few eggs (depending on serving size), cook for a further 5-6 minutes or until the eggs are cooked to your liking.
- Roughly chop some parsley for garnish. [Optional extra: crumble over some feta, or grated cheese of your choice]. Serve immediately with a slice of toast for dipping. You’re welcome!
Shakshuka is likely of Tunisian or Yemini origin. The name is thought to originate from either Arabic or Amazigh (Berber), and literally translates to "mixture."
Granola with Caramelised Banana & Sweet Tahini Yoghurt
Bananas caramelized in maple/sugar/honey with sweet tahini yoghurt on top of granola – a.k.a. The best way to start your day.
- Cut bananas into bite-sized pieces.
- In a pan, melt a knob of butter with either 1-2 tbsp of maple syrup/honey/sugar. Add the bananas, and cook until caramelized. Remove the bananas from the pan when they are golden and delicious.
- Add a tsp of tahini to the sweet pan juices and mix well until combined.
- Pour the sweet tahini mixture into the yoghurt and mix well.
- Plate up the granola and top with the caramelized bananas and sweet tahini yoghurt.
For a healthier option: use fresh banana and mix the yoghurt with tahini and honey.
Banana-Nutella Sourdough Toasty
Fresh sourdough bread filled with nutella and bananas, and toasted in a pan (always tastes better).
- Cut slices of sourdough. Spread nutella on each side.
- Fill with sliced banana to make a sweet sarmie.
- In a hot frying pan, melt a knob of butter and toast the sourdough sarmie on each side until toasted and crispy.
You can use a toastie machine if you have one
A delicious protein-packed breakfast, with a twist.
- Whisk together 3 eggs, a glug of milk (approximately 25ml), salt and pepper, some chopped parsley or chives and 1 tsp harissa paste (per person), until combined well.
- Place a medium, nonstick pan over a medium-high heat, along with a drizzle of olive oil and knob of butter. Once the butter is melted, pour the egg mixture into the pan and swirl it around to evenly spread over the pan. Allow to cook for a minute before adding some grated mature cheddar (and even some Parmesan – more cheese is never a bad idea), some of the Harissa-caramelised onions, a few slices of cherry tomatoes and some thinly sliced pepper.
- Allow the cheese to melt and the egg to puff up as it cooks. Carefully ease the edges of the omelette away from the sides of the pan, with a spatula. Start to slide the omelette out of the pan onto a plate, and in the process, fold one side over the other to make a half moon – cute, isn’t it?
- Finish off with a sprinkle of cheese over the top of your golden half moon, and some fresh herbs to garnish.
Eggs are not only a good source of protein, but also of vitamin D, a micronutrient vital for immune function and maintaining a healthy body.
Honey-Rosemary Caramelised Figs with Granola & Yoghurt
A fresh and tasty twist on breakfast granola
- Cut your figs in half.
- In a frying pan, melt a knob of butter. Add a healthy dollop of honey and a sprig of rosemary.
- Add your sweet figs, cut-side down, and cook until caramelised.
- Serve with some yoghurt and crunchy granola.
If you don't want to cook the figs, you can make a warm herb-honey drizzle by placing the honey and the rosemary sprig in the microwave (or on a stove) and heating until fragrant. Yogurt can be high in protein, calcium, vitamins, and live culture, or probiotics, which can enhance the gut microbiota.
The contents of this week’s box have been inspired by North African and Mediterranean cuisines – think lamb, chicken, aubergine, cauliflower, peppers, pomegranates, hummus, dates, and harissa.
There are countless combinations of deliciousness that can be created with these ingredients – we’ve given you some cumin flatbreads to serve them with. This kind of food can be eaten at any time of the day, and leftovers last for days.
We suggest creating a variety of smaller dishes, and using your flatbreads to combine them in whichever way you like. Here are some of our favourites.
Moroccan Lamb Flatbread
There is no better match than beautifully caramelised lamb on a toasty flatbread.
- Preheat the oven to 200°C with a hot tray inside. Peel and slice an onion. Peel and grate some garlic.
- Place a pan over a medium-high heat with a drizzle of oil or a knob of butter. Fry the onion until soft and translucent. Crank up the heat and add the lamb mince, fry for 4-5 minutes until caramelised, breaking it up as you go. Add the garlic in the final minute.
- Place your flatbread on the hot tray and chuck into the oven for 3-4 minutes, just to parbake until slightly crispy. Remove from the oven and scatter over the mince and onion – we suggest using a heavy hand here.
- Return the flatbread to the oven and bake for a further 2-3 minutes.
- Roughly chop some fresh mint or parsley. See recipe for the D-I-Y tzatziki under the ‘Mediterranean’ section, and whip some up for your flatbread. Deseed and chop a fresh chilli.
- Garnish with fresh mint/parsley and some pomegranate gems. Dollop over the tzatziki and scatter over some fresh chilli if you fancy. Enjoy!
Spiced Aubergine Flatbread with Pomegranate, Mint & Hummus
- Preheat the oven to 200°C with a hot tray inside. Slice the aubergine lengthways into 1cm thick aubergine fingers. Place onto a tray, or into a colander, with salt for 10 minutes to remove the bitter juices (degorging, is the fancy cooking term).
- Peel and slice an onion. Peel and grate some garlic.
- Once the aubergine has degorged, place onto a baking tray, coat in oil and season with salt and pepper, and any spices you fancy (cumin, paprika are always a win). Roast in the hot oven for 20 minutes until soft and golden.
- Place a pan over a medium-high heat with a drizzle of oil or a knob of butter. Fry the onion until soft and translucent. Add the garlic towards the end.
- Place the flatbread on the hot tray in the oven for 3-4 minutes just to parbake until slightly crispy. Remove from the oven. When the aubergine is ready, layer the aubergine on the flatbread and top with the onion and garlic mixture. Bake for a further 3-4 minutes.
- On completion, loosen the hummus with some lemon juice and a splash of water (until drizzling consistency). Drizzle some hummus dressing over the flatbread, garnish with some mint and pomegranate gems, and devour!
Chicken & Date Tagine
A heart-warmingly delicious chicken and apricot tagine.
- Preheat the oven to 150°C. In a bowl, combine some cumin, cinnamon, paprika, turmeric, and salt with oil to make a paste. Thinly slice an onion. Grate some ginger and garlic. Peel and roughly chop some carrots. Roughly chop some dried dates (and even some dried apricots if you’re feeling adventurous).
- Coat the chicken in the paste. Place an ovenproof dish (that has a lid) over a medium-high heat and brown the chicken pieces for about 3-4 minutes per side. Remove from the pan and set aside.
- Keep the pan on the heat with a drizzle of oil. Add the onion and sauté until soft. Add the grated ginger and garlic, cook for another 2 minutes. Remove from the pan.
- Place the chicken back into the ovenproof dish in a single layer, make it fit nice and snug. Add the chopped carrots, chopped dates (and apricots) and your onion-garlic mixture.
- In a bowl, add a cup of chicken stock, some honey (to taste), tomato paste, lemon juice, and a pinch of cinnamon. Pour over the chicken. Pop the lid on and place in the oven for 2 hours. If time isn’t on your hands, crank up the heat to 180°C and cook for 45 minutes.
- Serve with fresh chopped parsley on a bed of rice or mash. Dig in.
If you have the time, cook for 2-3 hours on a low temperature. This is ideal as the chicken becomes beautifully tender, like fall-off-the-bone kind of tender.
Moroccan Mezze Platter
We’re talking falafel with hummus, lamb and date kofta with herb yoghurt, rosemary/garlic fried flatbread, AND figs, honey and pecan dukkah.
- Make the falafel according to the instructions on the packet. Loosen your hummus with a little lemon juice.
- Sear the lamb chop, fat-side down, until rendered. Sear your juicy chop on each side. Remove from the pan and then cut into little pieces. Add back to the pan with the lamb fat and add some of your favourite exotic spices (whatever your foodie heart desires). Fry again until crispy.
- Chop up some parsley and add to your yoghurt with a splash of vinegar, salt and pepper. Serve the crispy lamb on top of the herby yoghurt.
- Pan-fry the flatbread in garlic and butter/oil with a sprig of rosemary until crispy. Cut into quarters.
- Cut your sweet figs in half and drizzle with honey and some chopped pecans (or pecan dukkah, if you’re feeling fancy).
- Serve on a chopping board and garnish with fresh herbs and some pomegranate gems.
Lamb & Date Koftas
A Middle Eastern delight with dates and parsley.
- Finely chop some parsley and dice an onion.
- In a food processor, blitz a handful of dates until finely chopped and starting to turn in a paste.
- In a bowl, combine the lamb mince with your chopped date-paste, some chopped parsley, some onion, ground cumin, ground coriander and 1 egg. Mix well and season to taste. Hot tip: the mixture needs to be properly combined to achieve the finer texture of a kofta (in comparison to an ordinary meatball).
- Take a small handful of your kofta mixture, slightly larger than a golf ball, and form into a small, elongated sausage-like shape, just over 5cm long.
- If you’d like to fry the koftas, place them in a pan over a medium heat with enough oil to cover the base of the pan. When hot, fry on all sides until cooked through and golden.
- If you’d like to bake the koftas, bake them in a hot oven at 200°C for 20-25 minutes until cooked through.
Serve on a warm flatbread with pickled onions and lashings of lemony herb yoghurt.
Tzatziki is just one of those fridge staples – spread, dip, dollop, spoon. Yum!
- Grate the cucumber onto a clean towel or some paper towel. Allow any excess liquid to drain out. Add your drained cucumber to some yoghurt.
- Peel and grate the garlic. If you prefer cooked garlic, sauté the garlic in a pan until fragrant – otherwise add the grated garlic as is.
- Season the tzatziki with salt, pepper, lemon juice and olive oil. Add some chopped mint too, if mint’s your thing.
It's important to drain the liquid from the cucumber as any liquid will make the tzatziki watery and not so lekker – leading to expiration earlier than usual.
Garlicky Lamb Chops with Tzatziki
- Place the lamb chops in a dish. Coat in some olive oil, chopped garlic, lemon juice and fresh chopped parsley. Cover and marinate for 1-2 hours, or overnight for maximum flavour.
- Place a pan over a high heat with some of the marinating oils. Fry the chops for 3-4 minutes per side, or until cooked to your liking (this time yields medium rare). Rest for 5 minutes before serving.
- See the D-I-Y Tzatziki recipe above for serving.
Marinating any sort of meat is always better when it's marinated overnight. It results in the meat being more flavoursome, tender and juicy.
Battered Aubergine with Tzatziki
Aubergine slices coated in a light batter and fried – served with Tzatziki.
- Cut the aubergine into thin rounds. Place into a colander and generously salt. Leave to degorge for 20-25 minutes. Pat dry
- Make your batter by whisking ¾ cup of cake flour or tempura rice flour with +/- 230ml soda water – until it becomes a smooth batter.
- Bring some oil to a high heat in a large pot. Coat your eggplant in some batter. Using a fork, place your battered eggplant pieces into the oil and fry for 5 to 6 minutes, until golden on both sides and the batter puffs up. Be careful, hot oil is tempura-mental.
- Drain on absorbent paper towel and season.
- Serve it up hot, with tzatziki dipping sauce – for vegan tzatziki (see recipe suggestion).
Tempura rice flour is a gluten free option.
Baked Sweet Potato topped with Greek Salsa
- Cut the sweet potato in half lengthways. Coat in some oil and seasoning, and bake in a hot oven for 30-35 minutes, until cooked through.
- Dice some cucumber and tomatoes, and chop some parsley. Mix in a bowl with some cubed feta, lemon juice, a splash of olive oil and season well.
- Top the roasted sweet potato halves with your colourful salsa and enjoy!
Add anything you want to the salsa – olives are a yummy addition.
Roasted Jerusalem Artichokes with Lemon & Thyme
- Preheat the oven to 180°C. Scrub the jerusalem artichokes well to remove any soil/hard skin (don’t worry, they can handle it).
- In a bowl, add some thyme leaves, lots of lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper.
- Cut the artichokes into bite sized pieces, coat in the lemon-thyme marinade.
- Roast in the hot oven for 40-45 minutes until soft and tender.
Optional Step: Grate some parmesan over for serving.
Garlicky Marinated Aubergines
Aubergines never looked so good. Serve on top of and with anything.
- Cut the aubergines into thick disks, lay out on a tray/colander, sprinkle with salt and leave to degorge (naturally removes bitter juices) for at least 30 minutes. On completion, pat dry with some paper towel.
- Peel and grate some garlic (we encourage lots of garlic, always), rinse and chop some parsley, zest and juice a lemon (all in one bowl is fine – less washing up).
- Place the aubergine slices in an oven-safe dish, in a single layer. Evenly pour over the lemon, garlic and parsley, drizzle with a good glug of olive oil, and season well with salt and pepper, until all the slices are coated. Cover and set aside to marinate for 4-5 hours.
- After the marinating, pop the oven on to 200°C. When hot, bake the marinated aubergines for 45 minutes until soft and starting to brown. Tuck in!
Eat with some warm, toasted Turkish bread, Sourdough or any bread of your choice.
AN ODE TO THE HUMBLE BIRD
We’re often eating chicken pieces, breasts, schnitzels, and the likes – but what about the whole bird? And how do we then make the most of it? Waste not, want not. Always eat what you can, but save some of the meat scraps for leftover chicken mayo sarmies, or even a hearty chicken soup. Another way of doing this is to make a homemade chicken stock – it’s simple, delicious and damn good for you. Simply roast your chicken following our recipe, or one of your own. Instead of discarding your carcass, use it to create your very own stock (see stock recipe below). This extracts all the flavour and the nutrients, while leaving you with cloudy, golden elixir. Use it for soup, in a sauce, in risotto, or even just enjoy it as is.
So here’s how to use your bird, three ways, full.
Think: old fashioned, home-cooked roast chicken, with a slight Middle Eastern twist to spice things up.
- Pop all of the leftover bones and skin (about 750 g – 1 kg) into a large pot, with the remaining onions from the roasting of the chicken.
- Roughly chop an onion, slice a large carrot, smash 3-4 cloves of garlic with the back of a knife, and slice 2 stalks of celery. Add it all to the pot with the bones. Add enough water to cover about 2-3 cm above your bones
- Place the pot over medium-high heat and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to a low simmer. Here, you can add any herbs that you wish – thyme, bay leaves, oregano (and the likes). Allow to simmer for 3-4 hours. Skim off any foam that rises to the surface.
- After the stock has simmered, remove the bones from the pot (with a slotted spoon), and strain your stock through a sieve.
- You can either use this stock as is, for a soup or risotto, or you can concentrate it more. To do this, return the strained stock to the pot and place over medium low heat. Allow the stock to simmer and reduce to a level that suits you.
Use in your next soup or risotto, or freeze for use in the future. This stock should last 3-4 days in the fridge, or several months in the freezer.
Harissa & Lemon Roast Chicken Pieces
Think: old fashioned, home-cooked roast chicken, with a slight Middle Eastern twist to spice things up
- Position your oven shelf to the bottom third. Then, preheat the oven to 190°C. Wedge a lemon, peel and wedge an onion, peel and chop 2 carrots, peel and smash 3 cloves of garlic and de-leaf a medium sprig of rosemary.
- Place the onion, carrots, garlic cloves, rosemary sprigs and roughly chopped sage into the base of a deep roasting dish. Place the chicken pieces on top of the veggies.
- Mix 50g of softened butter with 2 tbsp of harissa paste, and salt and pepper. Mix well. Spread a thin layer of the harissa-butter on the outside of the chicken pieces. Squeeze the lemon juice from the wedges over the chicken pieces and pop the squeezed wedges into the bottom of the baking dish.
- Roast for about 30-40 minutes, basting the chicken with the juices from the roasting tray every 15-20 minutes or so. Roast until the skin is golden brown and crispy, and the juices from the chicken run clear when pierced with a small sharp knife.
- Allow to rest for 10 minutes after removing from the oven, and garnish with fresh, roughly chopped parsley and some more fresh lemon.
Don't throw away any bones or carcass, onions or lemons – we can make a delicious and wholesome chicken stock with this. Aany leftover chicken can go into a hearty soup, or some chicken mayo sarmies.
Roast Chicken Pieces with a Creamy Mushie Sauce
- Pat the chicken pieces dry and place into an ovenproof dish. Drizzle with oil and season with salt, pepper and chopped rosemary. Bake (uncovered) in the oven for 30 minutes at 200°C. This initial high heat will help brown the chicken. Then, lower the heat to 170°C and bake for an additional 15-30 minutes until the juices run clear when poked with a sharp knife.
- In a hot pan with oil, fry your mushrooms until golden. Remove from the pan.
- In the same pan, lower the heat and sauté some onions in 2 tbsp butter until soft. Add some crushed garlic and rosemary and fry until fragrant.
- Add a tbsp of flour and mix with the buttery onions to form a roux. Cook for 1-2 minutes until it smells biscuity. Slowly whisk in enough milk for a decent amount of sauce. Allow to simmer for 5 minutes, to thicken. Add a handful of grated parmesan (add some more, nobody’s watching).
- Plate up the roasted chicken pieces and pour over the creamy mushroom sauce.
- Serve with a fresh green salad.
Date, Lemon and Herb Chicken
An Ottolenghi-inspired take on sweet ‘n sour chicken – a date night must!
- Place your chicken in a baking dish with 2-3 crushed garlic cloves, a generous glug of olive oil, roughly chopped dates, quartered lemons, sprigs of thyme, and dash of red wine vinegar (if you have).
- Combine well, season, cover the bowl and leave in the fridge to marinate for up to 1 day (if possible), stirring the ingredients a few times during the process. Hot tip: if you have olives or capers on hand, throw in a handful, they compliment this dish beautifully.
- Preheat the oven to 180°C. Remove the chicken from the fridge and allow it to reach room temperature.
- Place the chicken in the oven with all the marinade ingredients. Whisk together half a cup of wine and 1 tbsp of honey/molasses, and pour this over the meat.
- Place in the oven and cook for 25 minutes, basting 2 or 3 times, until the meat is golden brown on top and cooked through.
- Remove from the oven, transfer everything to a large platter, and serve with some fresh salad leaves.
THE CAULIFLOWER QUEEN
This week’s star of the Vegetable Show typically goes unnoticed, but we are here to show you what she’s got. With an impressive Vitamin C content, moderate levels of Vitamin K and several Vitamin Bs, we’re sure this queen is going to knock your socks off. Culinary use of the cauliflower dates back two thousand years, and yet it remains on-trend – often used nowadays as a low-carb, gluten-free alternative to potato, rice, or flour.
You can also dress her up as wholesome or as sassy as you like. Roast it whole, make a classic cauliflower-with-cheese-sauce, or turn it into steaks – yes, steaks! Whizz it up to make cauli-rice, or mash it up to use as, well, mash – even snack on it raw. This Wonder Veg is as versatile as veg gets – below are some ideas on how to make the most of your captivating cauli.
Charred Cauliflower Steaks with Tzatziki & Glazed Figs
The most moreish cauliflower salad you ever did eat – savoury, salty, and sweet all in perfect harmony.
- Peel the green leaves off the cauli head. Slice into 2cm thick steaks. Coat in some smoked paprika, oil, lemon juice, and seasoning. Leave to marinate for no less than an hour.
- Place a pan over a medium-high heat with a knob of butter. Fry the steaks for 2-3 minutes per side until charred and golden, and with an al dente crunch.
- See recipe for D-I-Y Tzatziki under our ‘Moreish Mediterranean’ section.
- Quarter some sweet figs. Return the pan over a medium-high heat with a further knob of butter and some castor sugar (or any sweetener of choice). Add the figs, and sauté for 4-5 minutes until beautifully glazed.
- Pick and roughly chop some mint. Toast the pecan nuts, and roughly chop when cool enough to handle.
- Layer the cauliflower with some fresh leaves, dollop over the tzatziki, scatter over the figs and garnish with some sliced mint and pecan nuts. Yummy!
One cup of raw cauliflower provides over 75% of the daily minimum target for vitamin C. In addition to supporting immunity, this nutrient is needed for DNA repair and the production of both collagen and serotonin (the latter promotes happiness and healthy sleep).
Whole Roasted Cauliflower
Cauli-gosh! A gorgeous whole roasted cauli in all her glory.
- Preheat the oven to 180°C. Peel the green leaves off the cauli head. Place the head on a lined baking tray.
- To make the marinade: in a bowl, combine some cumin, smoked paprika, cayenne pepper, mixed dried herbs, garlic powder, lemon juice and zest, olive oil and a splash of water. Mix well to combine, and coat the entire cauli in the marinade. Season with salt and pepper. Pop some whole and unpeeled on the roasting tray.
- Bake the cauli head in the oven for 35-45 minutes, or until tender.
- For the tahini dressing: combine some tahini, lemon juice, fresh chopped parsley, and sweetener of choice. When the garlic cloves are soft and roasted, remove the skin, roughly chop the flesh and add to the tahini dressing.
- Remove the tray from the oven, drizzle over the tahini dressing, garnish with some fresh parsley and pomegranate gems. Enjoy!
Cauliflower is naturally high in fiber, great for digestion and gut health.
Parmesan Crumbed Cauliflower with Harissa Yoghurt
Parmesan and breadcrumb coated cauliflower florets served with harissa yoghurt.
- Break the cauliflower head into florets.
- Combine 125g of breadcrumbs with 40g of grated parmesan. Heat some oil in a pot for deep frying (tssst).
- Prepare a bowl of flour, a bowl of beaten eggs and a bowl of parmesan-breadcrumbs. Dust the cauliflower florets lightly into your seasoned flour, then dip them into the beaten eggs, and finally cover them in the breadcrumb and parmesan mixture.
- Fry them up in batches until golden – then season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
- Mix some harissa with yogurt and a squeeze of lemon juice.
If you want a softer cauliflower nugget, you can steam the cauliflower before coating it.
Egg Fried Cauliflower Rice
All the yumminess of egg fried rice – but healthier!
- In a food processor, blend the cauliflower until fine.
- In a hot pan with oil (or sesame oil), fry some diced onion until soft. Add in some chopped garlic, ginger and chilli and fry until fragrant. Add diced carrot and peppers – fry until cooked through, but still crunchy.
- Make a well in the middle and add an egg into it. Continue to stir gently until the eggs are fully cooked.
- Combine some soy sauce, a squeeze of lemon juice and honey (to taste) in a bowl.
- Add your soy mix to the cauli rice and cook for another 1-2 minutes.
- Add some chopped chives and eat it hot!
Cauli rice is a great lower-carb alternative to regular rice – and just as delicious.
Creamy Cauliflower Puree
Time to put on your fancy pants with this cheesy delight! Fab as a side for lamb chops, chicken and aubergine (to name but a few)
- Cut your cauliflower head into chunks. Place in pot with a steamer, and steam for about 7-10 minutes, or until soft all the way through.
- Place the cauliflower into a blender with some grated parmesan, a knob of butter, cream, salt and pepper (garlic clove optional). Blend until smooth, season to taste on completion.
Low carb delight.
Fresh, zesty and a great light side to any dish! Best served as a relaxed lunch on a sunny day.
- Coarsely grate a head of cauliflower using the large holes of a cheese grater. Juice and zest 2 lemons.
- Place the grated cauliflower into a large bowl with the lemon juice, lemon zest (to taste), some salt and a drizzle of olive oil. Allow to marinate for 30 minutes.
- Finely chop some parsley, mint, chives, dune spinach, lettuce and 2-3 dates. Finely chop half your cucumber, a few tomatoes and lunchbox pepper.
- Toss the cauliflower with the chopped herbs and veggies. Add some thinly sliced chilli if you would like an extra zing! Season to taste.
- To serve, top with a few pan-roasted, chopped pecans and sweet fig slices
Cauliflower contains choline, a micronutrient that is essential for learning and improved memory.
Raw Cauli Florets
An instant, any-time snack.
- Break off as many florets from your cauliflower as you’d like.
- Rinse well.
- Grab a dip of choice (hummus, pesto, cream cheese, tzatziki, mayo, aioli) and munch away – or just snack on them plai
Raw cauliflower is a healthy, crunchy snack alternative to crackers.
Quick Cauliflower Rice
Basic cauliflower rice method.
- Blitz cauliflower in a food processor until fine.
- Sauté in a large pan with oil or butter. Cover with a lid so that the cauliflower steams and becomes more tender, for approximately 5-8 minutes.
You can jazz up this rice for different sides and cuisines: add desiccated coconut for Indian curries, garlic and rosemary for stews and one pot wonders, ginger and garlic for Asian stir-frys, chopped herbs and lemon zest for Mediterranian salads, and mixed spices (saffron, ground coriander, and cumin) for Morrocan sides.
Cauliflower Alfredo Sauce
Delicious low-carb, naturally creamy pasta sauce.
- Cut the cauliflower head into chunks. Place in pot with a steamer, and steam for about 7-10 minutes, or until soft all the way through.
- Place the cauliflower into a blender with grated parmesan (vegan option: nutritional yeast), a knob of butter/buttah, salt and pepper (garlic optional). Add a splash of water or veg stock, blend until smooth – season to taste on completion.
Some pick-me-up toasted sarmie ideas when you’re feeling the slump.
- Roasted Tomato & Boerenkaas Cheese
- Roasted Aubergine, Harissa & Hummus
- Mature Cheddar, Cucumber, Lettuce & Hummus
- Leftover Roast Chicken with Mayo, Fresh Lettuce and Cucumber.
Get creative and experiment with some of your favourite fillings and flavour combos.
Harissa Caramelised Onions
Caramelised onions make any meal more exciting – and with the addition of harissa paste and naturally sweet dates, these onions are a real winner.
- Slice your onions into thin half-moons. Finely chop 1-2 dates (discarding the pip).
- Place a pan over a medium heat with a drizzle of oil. Add your onions, chopped dates and a few finely chopped thyme leaves. Cook the onions for about 15 minutes, stirring regularly, until the onions become caramelised, browned and soft – and the dates have disintegrated into the onions. Add a splash of water to prevent things from burning while it cooks.
- In the last few minutes, add a knob of butter, seasoning and harissa paste (to taste). Stir it in until everything caramel-y and covered in harissa.
You can also add crushed garlic, extra herbs or chilli to these onions to put your own creative spin on them – store in the fridge for up to a week.
Roasted Butternut with Coriander Yoghurt
- Preheat the oven to 180°C. Cut the butternut into half moons. Coat in oil and season with spices of your choice (sumac and butternut are a match made in heaven). Roast for 30-40 minutes until soft and golden.
- In a bowl, combine the yoghurt with lemon/lime juice and zest, olive oil, chopped coriander, and seasoning.
- To serve, layer the roasted butternut, drizzle over the coriander yoghurt, sprinkle some fresh coriander leaves on top, and garnish with chopped dates or pomegranate gems (something sweet and tangy). Delish!
- Preheat the oven to 180°C. Halve the aubergines lengthways. Coat in oil, season and place them cut-side up on a roasting tray, with some whole unpeeled garlic cloves. Roast for 45 minutes until the aubergine flesh is very soft.
- When the aubergine is ready, scoop out the flesh and place in a blender with olive oil, the garlic flesh, lemon juice, salt, pepper, a drizzle of tahini and fresh parsley. Blend until smooth and season further to taste. Hot tip: for a creamier baba ganoush, add some yoghurt.)
Aubergines can also be grilled in tin foil over an open fire to get an even more intense charred, smokey flavour
Rosemary & Butterbean Hummus with Flatbread
Rosemary-infused oil blended with butter beans, garlic and tahini – and served with flatbread.
- Heat a cup of oil with a rosemary sprig until fragrant.
- In a food processor, add a can of drained butter beans, a chopped garlic clove, a tbsp of tahini and a squeeze of lemon. Blend and slowly pour in the rosemary oil until smooth.
- Season well and serve with toasted flatbreads.
You can substitute any can of cooked beans left in the cupboard – think: cannellini or haricot beans, chickpeas (and the likes).
Raspberry and Apple Chia-Jam
- Grate a Pink Lady apple and add it to a saucepan with a handful of raspberries. Add a small splash of water, and start cooking your fruits on a medium heat, breaking them up as they cook.
- When the apple and raspberries are a saucy consistency, add 1 tbsp of honey (or coconut blossom sugar/maple syrup/castor sugar). Stir until combined.
- Remove from the heat and allow to cool for a few minutes. Then, add 1.5 tbsp of chia seeds.
- Transfer the jam to a jar and allow it to cool completely. Once the jam has reached room temperature, transfer it to the fridge for an hour to set.
- Store in an airtight jar in the fridge for up to one week.
Raspberries are very high in Vitamin C – essential for immune function and assisting in the absorption of iron.
- Put 250g of raspberries in a pan with 250g sugar and 1.5 tbsp of red wine vinegar. Mash over a low heat for 10 minutes until smooth and syrup-y. Rub through a sieve into a clean pan.
- Tip the seeds from the sieve into a bowl and stir in 1.5L of water, then sieve again to remove the last of the pulp from seeds.
- Pour the liquid into the pan with the sieved pulp, stir well and boil for 1 minute. Pour into small, sterilised bottles and seal. The cordial will keep (unopened) for a few months. Once opened, store in the fridge.
Great as a refreshing soft drink, even better in cocktails and gin & tonics.
Whether added onto desserts, smeared on bread with cheese, or added to morning oats – you simply cannot go wrong.
- Roughly chop your figs and place in a pot with 100g caster sugar/coconut blossom sugar, and a splash of water. Place over a low heat until the sugar begins to dissolve and the figs begin to soften. Make sure to continuously break up the figs as they boil. Add a squeeze of lemon juice to balance the sweetness.
Figs are one of the richest plant sources of vitamins and minerals, even though they are low in calories.
Veg Stock (With All You Got)
The ultimate solution to avoiding waste in the kitchen – everything must go! Having your own homemade stock on hand takes the taste and nutritional value of meals to another level.
- Collect peels and ends from potatoes, sweet potatoes, celery, carrots, butternut, onions, spring onions, and leeks over the course of a cooking day. You can do this over a few days, just chuck the scraps into the freezer to keep until you’re ready to make your stock. Scavenge for any veggies or greens that may have become a bit sad in the fridge (spinach, green beans, radishes).
- Place everything in a large, deep pot.
- Add thyme, parsley, rosemary or coriander. Add an inch of ginger, half an onion (roughly chopped), 3 cloves of garlic (peeled) and salt to taste.
- If you don’t think you’ve collected quite enough scraps, add a couple of carrots or sticks of celery to bulk it up.
- Cover the contents with water and bring to the boil.
- Reduce the heat and simmer (covered) for 1 hour.
- Turn off the heat. Using tongs or a slotted spoon, remove the larger solids. Then, strain through a fine mesh sieve to separate and reserve the liquid.
- Store your liquid stock in an airtight jar in the fridge for up to a week – or freeze in small portions for later use.
Be sure to use clean vegetables and scraps – dirty, gritty broth is not lekker, and if it’s moldy, you probably don’t want it in your broth.
Fresh Mint Tea
Another good excuse to take a tea break.
- Boil the kettle.
- Rinse and pick some mint leaves. Put them in a pot on the stove and cover with boiled water. Boil for 10 minutes, then, allow to sit for 5 minutes before serving.
- Serve hot or cold with your choice of additions: sugar, honey, lemon juice, orange or lemon peel.
Fresh mint is a great digestive aid, so mint tea makes a great pre/post-meal treat. You can also add rooibos or green tea leaves (or a tea bag) to the pot if you want to spruce things up.
Brown Butter Cake with Figs and Lemon Yoghurt
Browned butter sponge cake served with fresh figs and lemon yoghurt
- In a pan on a low heat, melt 1 cup of butter until it begins to foam. Stir for about 5 minutes until it turns golden brown and smells nutty. Transfer to a large heatproof bowl and allow to cool in the fridge until solid, for about 30 minutes. Once solid, remove from the fridge and set aside to bring back to room temperature.
- Preheat the oven to 180°C and place the oven rack in the lower middle section of the oven. Butter a nonstick cake tin or loaf pan and dust with powdered sugar.
- Beat browned butter until it becomes creamy, then add 1 cup of sugar and a tsp of vanilla essence. Continue beating for 3-5 minutes until well combined and creamed. Beat 4 eggs, one at a time, making sure each is thoroughly combined before adding the next.
- In a separate bowl, combine 1.5 cups of flour, a pinch of salt and 1/2 a tsp of baking powder. Then, slowly beat your flour mixture into creamed butter mixture until well-combined.
- Transfer your batter to a loaf pan and bake for 30 minutes. Remove from the oven, loosely cover with foil, then continue baking for 20-25 minutes. Allow the cake to cool in the pan for 10-15 minutes. Then, transfer (upside down) to a serving platter.
- Mix the yoghurt with lemon juice, lemon zest, and a drizzle of honey.
- Serve with fresh figs and lemon yoghurt.
Homemade Gingerbread with Fresh Ginger
Spiced ginger cake loaf with fresh ginger.
- Preheat the oven to 180°C. Using a knob of butter, grease and lightly flour a 9x5 inch loaf pan. Tap out any excess flour.
- In a bowl, combine 1/2 cup flour, 1/2 tsp baking soda, 1 tsp ground cinnamon, 1/4 tsp all-spice and 1 tsp salt. Stir well and set the bowl aside.
- In a separate small bowl, stir together 1/2 cup buttermilk and 1 tsp vanilla essence, set aside.
- Combine 8 tbsp butter and 1 cup brown sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer. Beat on medium speed until fluffy and light in colour, about 3-4 minutes (can also beat by hand). Beat in 1/2 cup molasses and 5 tbsp ginger until combined. Then, one at a time, add in 2 eggs, beating in until well incorporated.
- Once everything is mixed in, scrape down the bowl and whisk. Add one third of the flour mixture and beat on a low speed until incorporated. Add half of the buttermilk mixture and beat until the batter looks smooth, pour in another third of the flour mixture. Add your remaining buttermilk and then the remaining flour mixture. Your batter should be nice and smooth.
- Pour your delicious batter into the prepared pan and place on the centre rack of your oven. Bake for 55 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in the centre comes out clean.
Afternoon tea never tasted so good.
Fresh Fruit Salad with Mint Sugar
- Finely chop mint and mix with a tbsp of sugar.
- Chop the figs, apple and banana. Place in a bowl with the raspberries and pomegranate. Squeeze over a little lemon juice.
- Sprinkle over the mint sugar and dig in
A great healthy dessert alternative, ensuring that you also pack in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants
Warm Date-Stuffed Apples with Yoghurt and a Lemon Crumb
Things are started to cool down so get warm with this comforting dessert
- Preheat the oven to 180°C.
- Core your apples (if you don’t have a corer, simply cut in half, carefully remove the core and put back together – no one will know)
- Roughly chop your dates and stuff the cored apples until they are full. Top with a little knob of butter.
- Place your apples in a baking dish and pop into the oven for 30-40 minutes, depending on how soft you like them. Check every 15 minutes, adding another knob of butter if they are looking a bit dry.
- In the meantime, place a few handfuls of granola in a ziplock bag and gently crush your granola into finer pieces – to resemble more of a crumb. Rolling pins or wine bottles work well here! To a bowl, add your crumb and the zest of half a lemon – always taste to ensure it’s to your liking.
- When your apples are ready, remove from the oven and plate up with a dollop of yoghurt and your lemon crumble.
Baked apples and dates give your diet a good fibre boost, which ultimately gives your digestive system a boost.