Broccoli Sweet Potato Cakes

Broccoli Sweet Potato CakesVegetarian sharing friendly food is something I love to eat with my mother. When she came over I served these cakes with a salad and a glass of white wine. Continue reading

That it is either for an aperitif or a meal, I like to place this kind of food in the middle of the table so that everyone can help themselves. The broccoli & sweet potato cakes are easy and made with few ingredients. Also, while I chose to bake them (for fat content purpose as I’m trying to shed a couple of kilos) you can also easily pan-fry them. The second option will make the cooking process shorter. Whether you want to serve these cakes for an aperitif or as a side dish during dinner, you can easily prepare the potatoes and broccoli in advance so you can save up time when preparing the rest of the food.

PS: I’ll take a week off blogging as I need to get ahead with my studies, chores and of course my wedding planning. Meanwhile I wish everyone a nice weekend!

Broccoli Sweet Potato Cakes

Broccoli Sweet Potato Cakes

 

 

Broccoli Sweet Potato Cakes

 

Recipe for 16 pieces (1-2 p.p. for an aperitif / 3-4 as a side dish for a meal)

Prep time: 10 min

Cook time: 45 for baked version / 25 for pan fried version

 

Ingredients

400 g sweet potatoes, peeled

400 g broccoli florets

120 g grated hard/semi-hard goat cheese

1 egg

Pepper

Optional: salt and cayenne pepper to taste (and olive oil if you chose to fry the croquettes)

 

Recipe

Blanch the broccoli by placing them in a pot of salted boiling water for 1 ½ – 2 min. Then remove them from the water with a slotted spoon and tranfer them to a bowl of icy water.

Cut the sweet potatoes into chunks and boil them in the water you used to blanch the broccoli (eventually remove a little water). Cook the sweet potatoes until they are soft, about 8-10 minutes.

Meanwhile evenly chop the broccoli florets.

Once the sweet potatoes are ready mash them and let them cool a little. Add the chopped broccoli, egg, pepper and eventually cayenne pepper and a little salt and mix all together.

You can either bake the cakes in the oven or fry them in a pan. So to cook with less fat I chose to bake them.

Baked: take a tbsp. of the preparation and place it on a baking tray lined with oven paper. Repeat with the rest of the mass. Bake in the oven for 20 min at 200°C then turn them around to brown on the second side.

Pan fried: Heat 2 tbsp. olive oil on a medium fire and portion the cakes with the help of a tbsp. Brown the potato cakes on both sides for about 5 min per side.

Springtime Pasta

Springtime Pasta Because asparagus season always seems too short so I wanted to take advantage of it at least once more. Continue reading

For this quick and easy dish I dressed the pasta with a creamy goat cheese sauce filled with tasty and healthy greens. These will provide two of the five portions of fruits and vegetables one needs a day. And since after almost eight years I’m still trying to get my fiancé to improve his diet, this is a good way to trick him 😉 .

Springtime Pasta

 

 

Springtime Pasta

Recipe for 4

Prep time: 5 min

Cook time: 10-15 min

 

Ingredients:

320 g pasta (fusilli, farfalle…)

320 g fresh peas (frozen ones are fine too but make sure they are at room temperature)

320 g fine asparagus

160 g fresh goat cheese

2 tbsp. olive oil

3-4 tbsp. cream

Zest of 2 lemons

Juice of 1 lemon

Salt and pepper

 

Recipe:

Chop the asparagus into 2 cm pieces (I cut mine a little too big).

Heat the olive oil in a pan over a low-medium heat. Add the chopped asparagus and the peas with salt and pepper to taste. Cook until tenderstirring occasionally, about 6-7 minutes.

Meanwhile bring a large pot filled with salted water to a boil and cook the pasta according to package instructions.

Once the vegetables are done add the lemon juice and lemon zest. Cook for another half minute before reducing fire and adding the cream and goat cheese. Cook while stirring until the goat cheese has melted.

Drain the pasta and add it to the pan with the vegetables and the goat cheese. Toss and serve.

 

Spinach & Mushroom Spaetzle Gratin


Spinach Mushroom Spaetzle Gratin The great thing with spaetzle is that it’s a made from scratch type of pasta is quick to prepare and doesn’t need great skills to put together. Continue reading

Personally I love the consistency and taste of spaetzle. For this gratin recipe I’ve added mushrooms and spinach because they are a delicious flavour combination that is easy to find all year round. I served this dish with a simple salad but if you want to serve some meat, a nice piece of chicken would marry well with the rest of the ingredients.

Spinach Mushroom Spaetzle Gratin Spinach Mushroom Spaetzle Gratin

 

Spinach & Mushroom Spaetzle Gratin

 

Recipe for 4

Prep time: 15 min

Cook time: 40-45 min

 

Ingredients

 

Spaetzle:

400 g flour

4 eggs

1.5 dl milk

1.5 dl water

2 tsp. salt

 

Gratin:

2 knobs butter (plus more to grease the baking dish)

150 g chestnut mushrooms

150 g cooked spinach (frozen one are fine too)

200 g sour cream (I used ½ fat)

A splash of cream

80 grams grated Swiss cheese (I used Sbrinz)

2-3 tbsp. breadcrumbs

Salt and pepper

 

Recipe

Place the flour and salt in a bowl.

Beat the eggs together and mix them in the bowl with the flour.

Combine the water and the milk and gradually add them to the other ingredients while whisking. The batter should be dense but still a little runny.

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil and place a large holed colander (or even better on a spaetzle grater) on top. Take about ¼ of the batter, put it in the colander and press down so the better falls in the water. Once the spaetzle come to the surface it means the are ready. Place them in a bowl and set aside.

Finely chop the spinach and slice the mushrooms into 0.5 cm thick slices.

Melt the butter in a non-stick pan and add the mushrooms. Once they have browned on both sides remove them from the pan and set them aside. Using the same pan melt the second knob of butter and add the spaetzle to brown for about 7 minutes, tossing from time to time. Add the spinach and mushrooms, mix and season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove the pan from the fire and add the sour cream, cream and 50g of the grated cheese. After mixing all together transfer to a greased baking dish and sprinkle on top the rest of the cheese and the breadcrumbs.

Bake for 25-30 min at 190°C. Once the top has browned remove the dish from oven and wait a few minutes before serving.

Red Bean Burger

Red Bean BurgerI love vegetarian/vegan burgers and this recipe is something I keep on making over and over, especially when my mother comes over and we don’t know what to eat. Continue reading

With a few ingredients you’ve got yourself a healthy and filling dish that is easy and quick to prepare. What I also like about burgers is that they are a good source of iron and since my meat intake is relatively limited, this recipe is a good alternative. I prepared this red bean burger and garnished it with what I had at home (tomatoes and salad) although if had had an avocado I would have smashed it with a fork and used it as mayo to smother it all over. The nice thing at least is that I know that in not so long I’ll be having it again and this time I will not forget the avocado.

 

Red Bean Burger

Recipe for 4

Prep time: 15-20 min

Cook time: 8-10 min

 

Ingredients

520 g cooked red kidney beans

4 tbsp. chopped coriander

2 garlic cloves

1 small red onion

2 chilli peppers

Salt

1 tbsp. rapeseed oil

4 buns

Garnish to taste with either: tomatoes, salad, smashed avocado, mayonnaise….

 

Recipe:

Place the beans in a bowl and with the help of a fork or a potato masher mash them.

Crush the garlic with a garlic crusher and finely chop the onion and the red pepper. Add the two ingredients to the bowl along with the coriander and salt to taste.

Mix everything together and form four patties.

Heat the oil in a pan on a medium fire and cook the bean burgers for 4-5 min per side. Once they are nice and brown, garnish your burger according to your taste.

Pan Fried Artichokes with Croutons

Pan Fried Artichokes with CroutonsI have to admit that some dishes really are more difficult to photograph than others. Anyway, I just love spring for its seasonal produces and I always try to make the most out of this time of the year since it only lasts a limited time. Continue reading

I had some leftover bread that was going a little stale and since it was made with whole flour I didn’t feel like making breadcrumbs. Finally I decided to combine it with the artichokes and so I came up with this dish. Adding a little sun-dried tomatoes and olives with the final touch of the Parmesan flakes really brought the dish together. This is a simple and friendly recipe with a Mediterranean inspiration that will work well for a relaxed lunch or dinner.

Pan Fried Artichokes with Croutons

 

Pan Fried Artichokes with Croutons

 

Recipe for 4

Prep time: 15 min

Cook time: 20 min

 

Ingredients

4 artichoke hearts

200 g bread – preferably a little stale

2 tbsp. olive oil

18-20 olives

8 sun-dried tomato fillets

Salt and pepper

2 tbsp. chopped parsley

Parmesan flakes

 

Dressing

1.5 tbsp. balsamic vinegar

3 tbsp. olive oil

Salt and pepper

 

 

Recipe

 

Cut the artichoke hearts in four parts and remove the hairy part with a knife. Cut each quarter in half. While preparing them, fill a bowl with water and add lemon juice to prevent them from oxidising.

Cut the bread into 2 cm cubes.

Heat 1 tbsp. olive oil on a medium fire and add the artichokes with salt and pepper to brown on the cut side for 5-7 min. Turn them and brown the other cut side for another 4-5 min. Once done set aside.

Heat the second tbsp. of olive oil and add the bread cubes to brown on all sides.

Meanwhile halve the olives and cut the sun-dried tomatoes into strips. Also, make the dressing by mixing the ingredients together and set aside.

Once the croutons are nicely coloured add the olives, the sun-dried tomatoes and the artichokes to the pan. Cook another couple of minutes then remove from the fire and add the dressing.

Serve with the Parmesan flakes sprinkled on top.

Soft Polenta Cookies

Soft Polenta CookiesI hope everyone had a nice Easter. Like in many of these occasions, mine was filled with good food. Continue reading

On Sunday we had the traditional baby goat at my fiancé’s parent’s home. On Monday we had lunch at his aunt’s place. This is the time of the year where tourists come back and frankly it’s nice to see the streets repopulated with people enjoying the mild weather. On Saturday I had no appointments so I left home early to do my groceries as to avoid the crowd. With some time on my hands, I baked these soft polenta cookies, which turned out to not only be a treat but also a practical breakfast the following day. These easy to make cookies are soft and at the same time they have a light crunch given by the polenta flour. This recipe has a nice texture combination and the lemon brings extra freshness to the overall taste.

Soft Polenta Cookies

 

Soft Polenta Cookies

Recipe for about 16 units

Prep time: 15 min (+ 1 hour resting time)

Cook time: 20 min

 

Ingredients

80 g soft butter

80 g sugar

1 egg

Zest and juice of 1 lemon

140 g fine grain polenta flour

120 g flour

1.5 tsp. raising powder

A pinch of salt

Icing sugar

 

Recipe

Cream butter an sugar together for about 4-5 min.

Mix in the egg then add the lemon juice and zest.

In another bowl combine the polenta flour, flour, rising powder and salt.

Add little by little the dry ingredients to the wet one until you get an even mass.

Let the dough rest for an hour.

Make little balls of about 3 cm and place them on a baking tray lined with oven paper. Once you have placed them slightly flatten them with the palm of your hand. Remember to leave some space between each unit.

Cook in the oven for 20 minutes at 180°C.

Once done, place the soft polenta cookies on a rack to cool and dust them with icing sugar as a final touch.