Possibly my favourite dip ever…after hummus of course! Have a go at recreating this recipe at home and let me know what you think.
Serves: 4 as a side dip or more as part of a bigger Mezze Platter, (check out the links below for more ideas).
Cook: 40 mins Prep: 10 mins
Ingredients: 1 large aubergine, 4 tbsps. of olive oil, juice of one lemon, 2 tbsp. of tahini, 2 garlic cloves, 1/2 tsp. of powdered cumin, 1/2 tsp. of salt, your choice of nuts and a little more olive oil to serve.
Preheat your grill to high
Prick the aubergine all over and place under the hot grill for 15 minutes each side, until the aubergine skin becomes sunken
Allow to cool slightly and scoop out all the flesh and add to a blender or a bowl if using a hand blender
Chop the garlic and add to a pestle and mortar with the cumin and salt and pepper, mix to a smooth paste then add the olive oil
Add this mix to the aubergine and add the lemon juice and tahini and mix until smooth
Add a little more olive oil if the mixture needs loosening
Serve in a bowl with your choice of nuts for a garnish, (I used linseeds, walnuts, pine nuts and black sesame seeds), drizzle over some olive oil and serve with crudités or pitta or both!
Click on the links below to see my other Aubergine, Dips and Mezze Ideas x
Love meatballs but looking for a lighter, healthier gluten free option? Then try this delicious lemony almond meatball recipe, with easy peasy tomato sauce!
Makes: 18 meatballs
Prep: 15mins Cook: 40mins
Ingredients:For the Meatballs – 500g Pork Mince, 1 medium onion, 3 heaped tbsp. of ground almonds, 1 egg, zest of one lemon, 1 heaped tbsp. grated parmesan cheese, 1 heaped tsp. dried oregano, salt and pepper, drizzle of oil.
For the Tomato Sauce – Handful of cherry tomatoes, 400ml of passata, 3 cloves of garlic, 1 tbsp. of olive oil, 2 tsp. of balsamic vinegar.
Preheat your oven to 220f
Finely dice your onion and add to all of the other ingredients and work well to combine all of the ingredients together
Once combined, make into walnut sized balls and pop into a baking dish, drizzle with oil and cook for 30 – 40 minutes until browned
While the meatballs are cooking start on your sauce:
Finely chopped the garlic cloves and add to a pan with the olive oil
Cook for a few minutes on a medium heat then add roughly chopped cherry tomatoes and the balsamic vinegar
Cook for 5 – 10 minutes until the tomatoes start to break down, you can break them down a little with a wooden spoon
Add the passata and cook on a low simmer for 20mins
Serve the meatballs on gluten free pasta and your choice and veg and drizzle over the sauce
Friday night is a good excuse for a curry night right? Check out this delicious vegan recipe for some healthy inspiration.
Prep: 10 mins Cook: 45 – 60 mins
Ingredients: 1 white or brown onion, 2 large aubergines or 4 baby aubergines, 1 cup of green lentils, 2 cups of coconut milk, 1 veggie stock cube, 1/2 tsp of cumin, 1/2 tsp of turmeric, 1 chopped red chilli and 1/2 tsp of dried ginger, 4 tbsp of oil, 1 tsp. of masala paste.
Preheat the oven to 200F
Chop your onion and garlic and fry in a pan with 1 tbsp of oil for a few minutes until softened
Add all of your dried spices and chilli and coat the onions and garlic well
Add the lentils with 2 cups of coconut milk and 3 cups of veggie stock and give it a good stir
Bring to the boil and then turn down to a simmer until the lentils are soft, you may need to add some more liquid and give it the occasional stir
While the lentils are cooking, mix the masala paste with 3 tbsp. of oil
Cut the aubergines in half lengthways, criss cross the flesh and place on a baking tray flesh side up
Brush the masala oil all over the flesh and pop in the oven for 30 – 45 mins until soft
Once the aubergines and lentils are cooked serve up on a fluffy bed of basmati rice, lentils first then the aubergines on top
Tip: I used the same cup to measure the lentils and liquids to make sure I get the right measurements.
Looking for a filling but healthy meat free lunch? Then try my super easy, super delicious vegan rice bowl, if you omit the chilli even kids will love it!
Prep: 10 mins Cook: 30 mins
Ingredients: 1 cup of dried brown rice, 1 large avocado, 1 small can of sweetcorn, small bunch of spring onions, 2 tsp. brown miso paste, 1 tbsp. of sesame seeds (black, brown or white is fine), 1 tbsp. soy sauce, sprinkling of chilli flakes.
Pop the brown rice in a saucepan and add the miso paste, cook as per packet instructions
Once cooked, allow the rice to cool (this can be cooked the day before, or even in the morning if you have time)
Drain the sweetcorn and mix in with the rice along with the spring onions
Chop the avocado into slices and arrange on top
Sprinkle over the sesame seeds and chilli flakes and a little drizzle of the soy sauce
Make sure you eat your greens this week with this super speedy vegan stir fry that you can add to anything, rice, pasta, noodles etc, the sprinkling of brown sugar right at the end really adds something to the greens!
Serves: 2 – 4 depending on what you are serving it with
Ingredients: A bag or bunch of greens such as chard, kale, spinach, watercress, pak choi, (some types of cabbage might work too), 1 garlic clove, 1 red chilli (you can used dried chilli and frozen or pureed garlic), tbsp of oil, sprinkling of brown sugar and sesame seeds.
1. Chop up your garlic and chilli and heat in the oil for a few minutes
2. Chop or tear your greens and add to the pan, stir well to coat in the oil
3. Stir fry for a minutes more then sprinkle with brown sugar and sesame seeds
Just when you thought Banana Bread couldn’t be any sweeter… the addition of the chia seeds and dates makes this moorishly good! Don’t worry if you don’t have chia seeds or dates just add some raisins and it will still taste great!
Makes: One large loaf
Prep: 10mins Cook: 45mins – 1 hour
Ingredients: 285g of wholemeal flour, 4 ripe bananas (mashed), 200g of sugar, 2 eggs, 100ml of olive oil, 85ml of milk, 1 tsp. of bicarbonate soda, 1 tsp. of baking powder, 30g of chia seeds, 50g of pitted dates (chopped), 1 tsp. of vanilla extract, pinch of salt.
Preheat oven to 180C
Combine the flour, sugar, bicarbonate of soda and baking powder in a bowl
Mix the eggs, oil, vanilla extract and milk together then add to your dry mix
Mix well, then add the dates, chia seeds and mashed bananas and fold all together
Pour into a deep lined baking dish and pop in the oven for 45mins to one hour until golden brown on top
Want a tasty treat this evening without having to make an unnecessary visit to the supermarket? Then try this…my Friday Night Freezer Rice with Cheeky Chorizo, something that can be enjoyed by all the family!
Please note that this dish can easily be made to suit a vegan or veggie diet by omitting the chorizo and using veggie stock.
Prep: 10mins Cook: 20mins
Ingredients: Thumb sized piece of chorizo, 1 onion, 2 cloves of garlic, 1 cup of rice (long grain, basmati or risotto will work), three cups of frozen veg of your choice, I used sweetcorn, peas and butternut squash, 1 stock cube like chicken or vegetable, 2 tsp of harissa paste if you have, if not 1 tsp of tomato puree and 1 tsp of paprika, 1 tsp of dried oregano or dried thyme, a little oil for frying, jarred black olives and lemon slices to serve if you have.
Cut the chorizo, onion and garlic into small pieces and fry in a lidded pan with a little oil for a few minutes, until the onion is softened and has taken on some of the colour from the chorizo
Add your rice and give it a good stir, so that it is coated in all of the juices from the onion mix
Make up 1 stock cube with two cups of boiling water, (same cup you used to measure the rice)
Pour the stock into the pan and give it a good stir
Add you frozen veg and tomato puree or harissa paste with the dried herbs
Give another good stir, bring to the boil and then simmer lid on for 10mins
After 10mins the rice should be al dente, but if you prefer it softer, add 1/2 a cup of water and cook for a further 5mins lid on
Serve with a few olives and fresh lemon slices if you have
There’s no reason you can’t still have your morning smoothie during lockdown with this easy recipe.
Serves: 1 (for more just double the quantities)
Prep: 2 mins Cook: 0 mins
Ingredients: 1/2 Frozen or fresh banana, handful of frozen berries like raspberries, cup of milk of your choice
Blitz all ingredients in a food processor
Drink and feel virtuous!
Remember Bananas can make excellent basis for smoothies especially when frozen, my tip would be to cut up ripe bananas and freeze in a freezable container and just add to smoothies and milkshakes when needed.
Fancy making a batch of these yummy treats with what you already have in? Then try these chocolate flapjacks as porridge oats aren’t just for breakfast and also uses up any bits of chocolate you have left at home!
Prep: 10 mins Cook: 15mins plus cooling time.
Ingredients: 225g of oats, 125g butter, 125g of brown or white sugar, 2 – 3 tbsps. of honey, on any type of syrup that you have, 40g/50g of any left over chocolate you have in the house white, dark or milk!
Preheat oven to 180F
Put the sugar and butter into a pan and melt over a medium heat
Turn off the heat and stir in the oats and honey or syrup
Pour into a lined baking tray (roughly 18×28 cms)
Cook in the oven for 15 mins
Allow to completely cool, then melt your chocolate on the hob or in the microwave for about a minute and drizzle all over your flapjack
Allow the chocolate to cool then cut into 12 pieces