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Geek, part-time cyclist, ecoist, bad photographer, vegetarian. I fiddle with WordPress and Edu Tech.

Tag: black pepper

Roasted aubergine and red pepper couscous with halloumi cheese recipe

This is fairly quick to knock up and makes enough for 4 portions, it’s also easy to make vegan by replacing the halloumi cheese with sliced tofu.

Ingredients – Makes 4 portions

220g uncooked couscous

Olive oil

Freshly ground black pepper

1 vegetable stock cube (I use a Knorr stock pot)

330ml boiling water

1 large or 2 medium red onions

3 cloves of garlic, minced

1 large aubergine

2 sweet red peppers

1 250g block of halloumi or 1 block of tofu

1 can of cooked green lentils (Lentilles Vertes)

A drop of truffle oil – Optional

Method

Right, heat your oven to 200C, I’ve got a fan oven.

De-seed your peppers, chop them into pieces, make them however big you want.

Chop the aubergine into slices and then into pieces, again, any size you want but bear in mind you want all this to roast fairly quickly.

Throw the pepper and aubergine on baking tray, drizzle with olive oil, add a twist of black pepper and mix it all together.

Put that in the oven to roast and grab the onion(s).

Peel and chop the onions, put them in a large pan with a drizzle of olive oil and a twist of black pepper, cook over a medium heat until they’re turning soft and almost translucent. Add the minced garlic and cook for a few more minutes but don’t over cook the garlic.

Once the veg has been roasting in the oven for 10 minutes take it out, give it a shake and a turn and put it back in the oven for 10 minutes.

Slice the halloumi cheese into 8 slices, add a little olive oil to a frying pan and get it on a medium heat. Add the slices of halloumi and cook until golden brown, keep an eye on them, they can brown quickly. When both sides are done remove from the pan and set aside.

Your roast veg should have had about 20 minutes now, check to see if it’s done, I like it slightly crispy and almost burnt, each to their own. If it’s done, turn the oven off and get started on the cous cous.

Dissolve the stock pot in 330ml of boiling water, add the couscous to the pan with the onions and garlic and place on a very low heat. Add the stock to the pan, stir to cover the couscous and put a lid on the pan.

After 2-3 minutes give the couscous a stir, it should have swollen up and taken on all the water, if it hasn’t, put the lid back on and give it another minute but keep checking.

Once it’s done, drain the lentils and add them to the pan along with the roasted veg and halloumi cheese.

Add the totally optional drop of truffle oil and give it all a good stir, I know it sounds really pretentious but I think it really makes a difference. If you’ve not got truffle oil and you’re tempted to get some make sure it’s a good quality oil with some real truffle, I’ve got some of the Truffle Hunter oils.

Borscht – Beetroot soup with feta recipe

A friend gave me some home grown beetroot so I decided to make a bit of Borscht, or beetroot soup!

Ingredients – Makes enough for 3-4

600g (3-4 large beets), peeled and grated coarsely

500g (around 5-6) of ripe tomatoes, halved (I suppose if you’re really lazy you could use a tin of chopped tomatoes)

2 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped

1 medium onion, peeled and chopped

A bit of olive oil

500ml of vegetable stock (I used 2 ‘Knorr Stock Pots’)

Freshly ground black pepper

Some feta cheese

Method

Place the halved tomatoes in an oven dish, pour a little olive oil over the top of them and throw on the chopped garlic.

Place in the oven at 190C (I’ve got a fan oven) until they’re soft, it took me about 30 minutes.

Place the tomatoes in a sieve and rub through into a bowl to remove the skins and pips.

Put a little more oil in a pan and sweat the onion with a twist of black pepper.

Add the stock and beetroot, give it all a stir and bring to the boil for about 10 minutes or until the beetroot is tender.

Stir in the tomato purée.

Using either a stick blender or a normal blender process the soup until completely smooth. If you’ve got white walls take care, it’s easy to spray the soup all over if you’re using a stick blender!

Transfer the soup to warmed bowls and crumble a little of the feta cheese on top.

Serve with crusty bread!

You might also want to…

  • Add a shot of vodka
  • Chill in the fridge and serve cold

Baked aubergine with almost ratatouille recipe

It’s almost ratatouille but not quite but it tastes really nice and smothered over a lovely soft baked aubergine it makes for an easy meal. It goes down equally well over some roasted butternut squash wedges or topped off with some paneer pieces and a light grilling.

Ingredients

1 aubergine, washed and cut in half lengthways

1 400g can of chopped tomatoes

2 onions, peeled and roughly chopped

1 orange pepper, washed and cut into chunks

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1 teaspoon of sugar

A sprinkle of dried oregano

A sprinkle of dried sage

Freshly ground black pepper

A little olive oil

Method

Preheat your oven to 200C (I’ve got a fan oven).

Place the halved aubergine on a baking tray, score the flesh, rub with a little olive oil and add a little ground black pepper.

Bake in the oven for around 40 minutes but keep an eye on them!

Meanwhile in a large pan add a little olive oil and sauté the onion and orange pepper for a few minutes until the onion is soft.

Add the chopped tomatoes, garlic, sugar and a little black pepper, stir until combined.

Add as much of the herbs as you like, I probably added a teaspoon of each.

Give it all a good stir, have a taste, if it’s good let’s rock and roll.

When the aubergine flesh has turned golden brown and the edges catching move them to plates and spoon over the almost ratatouille.

Pasta with chili, garlic, ginger and tomatoes recipe

You’ll make sex noises throughout the whole time you’re eating this, I guarantee it! It’s quick to make and it’s got the got the right combination of heat from the chili & garlic and sweetness from the tomatoes.

Ingredients

150g of your favourite pasta

1 tin of chopped tomatoes

1 red chili, finely chopped

4 cloves of garlic, minced

A piece of ginger bigger than a big thumb, peeled and grated

125g of baby plum tomatoes, quartered

Olive oil

Freshly ground black pepper

Method

Bring a pan of water to the boil and get your pasta in there cooking away

In another pan, over a medium heat add a little olive oil and add the plum tomatoes, give them a stir and mush them up a bit. Cook for a few minutes.

Add the garlic, chili, ginger and chopped tomatoes. Add a twist of black pepper and give it all a good stir.

Let it bubble away whilst the pasta finishes cooking but don’t let it get too dry.

Drain the pasta and add it to the tomato sauce.

Enjoy!

Vegetarian Haggis recipe

Can you call vegetarian haggis, haggis? Either way, I had some in Edinburgh when I was there last week and it was so tasty I decided to make it myself. Sorry for listing some of the measurements in cups, that’s how I got the recipe and I didn’t think to weigh out the ingredients once I’d measured them.

Ingredients

Olive oil

1 carrot, peeled and finely diced

1/4 of a peeled swede, finely diced

1 onion, peeled and finely diced

6 mushrooms, finely diced

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1 cup of whole mixed nuts, hazelnuts, almonds and walnuts

1/3 of a cup of red lentils

600ml of vegetable stock

1/2 cup of cooked kidney beans

1 teaspoon of dried thyme

1/2 teaspoon of dried rosemary

1/4 teaspoon of ground cayenne pepper

1/4 teaspoon of freshly ground cinammon

Freshly ground black papper

1 tablespoon of soy sauce

1 and 1/2 cups of pinhead oatmeal

The juice of half a lemon

Method

Heat the oven to 170C.

Spread the mixed nuts out on a baking tray and roast in the oven for 10 minutes, don’t over-roast.

Let the nuts cool and finely chop them, I put them in the chopper I got with a stick blender.

Add a little olive oil to a large pan and add the onion, sauté for 5 minutes.

Season with some black pepper, don’t add too much right now, we’re going to add more later.

Add the carrot, swede, mushrooms and garlic and sauté for another 5 minutes.

Add the lentils, 450ml of the stock and stir.

Add the kidney beans to the remaining 150ml of stock and give them a little mash, don’t break them up too much.

Add the nuts, soy sauce, herbs and spices to the stock, stir it all together and add it to the vegetables. Cook for 5 minutes.

Add some more black pepper, keep tasting so you don’t over do it but you want to be fairly heavy handed with the amount of pepper you put in for a more authentic taste.

Add the pinhead oatmeal and cook for another 5 minutes. Add a little water of it gets too dry, the mixture should end up moist but not runny.

Add the lemon juice and stir it in.

Spoon the mixture into two lightly greased loaf tins.

Bake for 30 minutes at 190C.

Serve with mashed neeps and tatties!

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