Crispy Almond Crusted Asparagus

Crispy Almond Crusted Asparagus

Asparagus season is drawing to an end, but before saying, “See you next year” I wanted to make a last recipe for this spring with these green spears. Continue reading

This simple recipe is something versatile since you can serve it on its own as an appetiser or you can serve it as a side dish or on a nice salad, maybe with some cheese or salmon. I wasn’t too sure about the how much to heat the oven so here, I found a recipe for oven roasted asparagus that worked perfectly. For the breading, along with the flour and egg I made a mix of dry roasted ground asparagus and polenta flour, which gave an extra crisp to the texture.

Crispy Almond Crusted Asparagus

 

Crispy Almond Crusted Asparagus

 

Recipe for 3-4

Prep time: 15 min

Cook time: 20-25 min

 

Ingredients:

320-340 g asparagus washed woody part removed.

50 g ground almonds

1 large egg beaten

3 generous tbsp. fine grain polenta

2 tbsp. flour

Salt and pepper

 

Recipe:

Pre-heat oven at 220°C.

In a non-stick pan place the ground almonds and dry toast them on a medium fire, stir regularly. Once the almonds will have browned, place them in a dish and set them aside to cool.

Take three shallow dishes and in the first place the flour, in the second place the egg and in the last combine the polenta with the ground almonds and some salt and pepper.

Take an asparagus, dust it with the flour, and then dip it in the egg, making sure there are no dry spots left. Finally evenly coat it with the polenta and almond mix and place the asparagus on a baking tray lined with oven paper. Repeat the process up to the last asparagus.

Bake for 12-15 minutes, depending on the thickness of the asparagus. Serve as a side dish, as an appetizer, on a salad….

 

Crispy Oven Polenta Chicken

Crispy Oven Polenta Chicken Relaxed food without the need of cutlery is sociable and fun. This is exactly what I did with on my weekly lunch with my mother. With the wedding coming up and two families colliding, there’s much to talk about and a nice meal does help reducing the stress. I found some great looking organic chicken thighs. Continue reading

Like mother like daughter…. Both of us love crispy food so a nice crust made with polenta, was a great match. Using the ingredients I had at hand, I adapted my version from the recipe I found on the foodandwine.com.

Crispy Oven Polenta Chicken

 

Crispy Oven Polenta Chicken

 

Recipe for 8 pieces (1-2 pieces p.p)

Prep time: 10-15 min

Cook time: 45-55 min

 

Ingredients:

8 chicken thighs

Juice of 1 lemon

6 tbsp. fine grain polenta flour

3 tbsp. flour

1 tbsp. finely chopped rosemary leaves

1 dl milk

Salt and pepper

2 tbsp. olive oil

 

Recipe

Start by drizzling the lemon juice over the chicken. Leave for 15-30 minutes to marinate.

Meanwhile heat your oven at 180°C.

In a bowl pour the milk, in another one mix the fine polenta flour, plain flour and the chopped rosemary leaves.

Dry the meat with some kitchen paper then season generously it with salt and pepper.

Dip one chicken thigh first in the milk then evenly coat with the polenta flour mixture.

Heat half of the olive oil in a pan on a medium-high fire and place half of the chicken to brown on both sides for about 4-5 min per side. Once done set aside. Repeat with the second batch.

Line a baking try with aluminium foil and place a rack on top. Place the chicken pieces on top and cook in the lower part of the oven for 35-45 minutes. If juices of the chicken run clear when pierced, you’re ready to take them out. Serve either warm or at room temperature. Serve with lemon wedges on the side.

 

Broccoli Fries

Broccoli FriesI admit I like munching in front of a film, with the fireplace burning and my dog begging for some food. Continue reading

My fiancé is in regional politics and the campaign is starting so I know that when I’m not accompanying him, I will be enriching my film culture. The good thing is that I will get to watch films in original version 🙂 – In order not to feel too guilty when I treat myself, I try to make lighter and healthier snacks instead of fried chips or salty meats… well, sometimes I succumb to cheese, but I try to limit eating too much of it by using it in smaller quantities. A little of the dairy delight can go a long way and this is what I did for with this recipe. A little cheese for these baked broccoli fries is all that is needed… along with the other ingredients of course.

 

Broccoli Fries

 

Recipe for 2-3 people

Prep time: 10-15 min

Cook time: about 8 min

 

Ingredients

250 g broccoli florets

3 tbsp. breadcrumbs

3 tbsp. finely chopped walnuts

2-3 tbsp. finely grated cheese

¼ – ½ tsp. smoked paprika

1 dl cream

Salt

 

Recipe:

Heat oven at 210°C.

Clean and cut the broccoli florets into bite sized pieces.

In a bowl place the cream; in another bowl place the breadcrumbs, walnuts, grated cheese and smoked paprika.

Take a few pieces of broccoli and soak them in the cream, let excess drip and then coat them with the breadcrumb, walnut mixture. To prevent the dry mixture from getting too soaked I divided the quantity and used them one at the time.

Once they are coated place them on a baking tray lined with parchment paper and cook in the oven for 8-9 min. Serve.

 

 

Walnut Breaded Aubergine with Sour Cream Dip

Walnut Breaded Aubergine with Sour Cream Dip

I am an absolute fan of breaded and/or battered vegetables. Continue reading

So a couple of days ago I was doing my groceries  found some Swiss grown aubergines. Since I knew I wouldn’t see my boyfriend in the evening, I decided I’d enjoy them with a nice glass of wine and while watching the film Milk. Stefano (my boyfriend) doesn’t eat aubergines and usually when we eat together I often make something with meat. This was an evening to enjoy with and by myself. After consulting The Flavour Thesaurus (fortunately it’s in e-book version or the ink would have faded from the pages). I liked the idea of Aubergines and walnuts, so I decided to go with this. Instead of frying it in a pan like I did last year with my breaded zucchini, I decided to bake them in the oven and followed the directions I found here.

Walnut Breaded Aubergine with Sour Cream Dip

Walnut Breaded Aubergine with Sour Cream Dip

Walnut Breaded Aubergine with Sour Cream Dip

Recipe for 3-4 as an appetizer.

Prep time: 15-20 min

Cook time: 12-16 min

 

Ingredients

For the aubergines:

1 medium aubergine

4 tbsp breadcrumbs

3 tbsp finely chopped roasted walnuts

¼ tsp chili powder

Zest of 1 small lemon finely chopped

Salt and pepper

1 egg

1-2 tbsp water

2 tbsp flour

(optional: a drizzle of oil on the slices before baking)

 

For the dip:

150 ml sour cream

1 tbsp chopped parsley

1 small crushed garlic clove

1 tbsp chopped spring onion

 

Recipe

Switch the oven on at 230°C.

For the dip, in a bowl, mix all the ingredients together and set aside.

In a bowl place the flour. In another mix the egg with the water and in the third the combine breadcrumbs, walnuts, chili pepper and lemon zest.

Remove the top and bottom of the aubergine and two extremities on the side. Cut lengthways making slices of about 1 cm thick. Cut each slice into four parts.

Season the aubergine pieces with salt and pepper. Take one piece and coat it with the flour, then with the egg and finally in with the breadcrumb mix. Place on a parchment lined baking tray. Repeat with the rest of the aubergine pieces.

Now you can eventually drizzle with the olive oil. Place in the oven and leave to cook for 6-8 min. Turn the slices and cook for another four minutes. Remove from the oven and serve warm with the sour cream dip.

This recipe could also work as a side dish topped with a little tomato sauce.

Coconut Chicken with a Basil Sauce

Coconut Chicken with a Basil Sauce (800 x 578)This week the summer weather was almost like an annoying guest who would not eve leave you alone in the evening to enjoy some spare time. When the weather is like this , I usually feel like eating something that is either fresh or that tastes fresh. I thought that for a ladies’ night this dish would have been appropriate to start us off, especially served with some chilled white wine. This coconut chicken and the basil dip sauce have a touch of exotic … something that always makes me feel like I’m on holiday. Continue reading

I would just like to say that for the sauce I took the inspiration from Gordon Ramsay’s ‘Beef Lettuce Wraps’ recipe (from his Ultimate Cookery Course book). In my recipe I have replaced coriander leaves with basil and I have directly added some chopped spring onion.


About Coconut:

Coconut is a fruit that has been around for so long that we do not really know where its origin lies. What we know though, is how its name originated. Here is an extract of the information I found. I did not really change anything about the test as I find the whole passage to be interesting: “The word coconut did not appear until after the Portuguese explorers in the 15th century. The explorers found this fruit growing on Indian Ocean islands, they described the coconut shell as a coco, or “grinning face” of a monkey because of its 3 dark holes at its base which look like a pop-eyed merry face. From then on, it was referred to as the “coconut”.
Although its name was recorded in Sanskrit in the early beginnings of history, the coconut was unknown to the western world until the 6th century, when it was imported into Egypt from the Indian Ocean–and still made little impression, though Marco Polo recognized it as “Pharaoh’s nut” when he ran across it in India on his travels.
In the Middle Ages, coconuts were so rare and so cherished that their shells were polished and mounted in gold. By the 19th century, however, new transportation routes made them common in European markets–and throwing objects (“coconut shies”) at local side shows.” (source: http://www.coconutrepublic.org/coconut_story.php )


Coconut Chicken with a Basil Sauce

Recipe for 4-6 as appetizer (or with some rice and green beans it could work as a meal for 2)
Prep. Time : 15-20 min
Cook Time : 25-30 min


Ingredients :

For the chicken :
1 ½ tsp flour
½ dl buttermilk
3 tbsp shredded coconut
½ tsp lime zest
¼ tsp ground chilli powder
Salt and pepper
8 chicken strips (or about 220-250g chicken breast)


For the dressing :
1tsp sesame oil
1tbsp soy sauce
Juice of ½ lime
1 tsp sugar
1 small chilli thinly sliced
1 spring onion thinly sliced (the green part only)
1tsp olive oil
7-8 chopped basil leaves


Chicken Recipe :

Heat the oven at 200°C.

Take three bowls. In the first place the flour, in the second the buttermilk and in the third place the shredded coconut. With the coconut bowl add the salt (about ¼ to ½ tsp), the pepper, ground chilli and the lime zest and rub the preparation together to blend in the flavours.

Take one strip of chicken and coat it with the flour. Move it to the buttermilk and soak it and let gravity drip away the excess. Finally coat the chicken with the coconut preparation. Repeat with all the strips.

Place the prepared chicken in the oven and cook for 25-30 minutes. When the chicken is ready let it rest for 3-minutes before serving.

For the sauce :

While the chicken is cooking it’s time to make thesauce. In a bowl mix the sesame oil, soy sauce, lime juice and sugar together ; then add the red chilli, the basil and the chopped spring onion.

Light Breaded Zucchini

Light Breaded ZucchiniIncredibly this week it felt like summer; after so many days of rain we finally had sun and the thermometer showed more than 25 °C. Everyone I met was in a good mood. And what screams summer more than fresh green zucchini? This is one of my favourite veggies and you can just do so much with them. This week I wanted to make something which is somewhere comfortable but light and breaded zucchini was something that felt right.
Breading food is such an old recipe that the first recipes found where the technique of breading was used dates back to the roman times, about 1 century BC. This first recipe of pounded meat cooked with breading is said to be influenced by Apicus: the gourmet of roman times. The recipe spread through Europe and stale bread would take a tasty role in the kitchen (source: www.kitchenproject.com/history/Schnitzel/ ).
Continue reading


Light Breaded Zucchini Recipe

Recipe for 4 people as a side dish.

Prep time: 10 min

Cooking time: 12min


Ingredients:

2 medium sized zucchini

7 tbsp bread crumbs

1 tbsp thinly chopped dry roasted pine nuts

3 good tbsp grated hard goat cheese

2 tbsp Thyme leaves

small ½ tsp garlic powder

Salt, pepper

4-6 tbsp yogurt

olive oil


Recipe:

Cut the zucchini to an angle and into slices of about 1 cm thick.

In a bowl mix the bread crumbs, the chopped pine nuts, the thyme,cheese, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Mix and rub the ingredients together to blend the flavours.

In another bowl put some yogurt; coat a zucchini slice on both sides and shake off the excess (you can also do it with a brush if you want). Then, take the slice and coat it with the breadcrumb mixture on both sides. Make sure the breading covers well the whole surface of the zucchini. Repeat with each slice.

Heat some olive oil in a pan and brown the zucchini slices on both sides; about 4 minutes per side. Make sure the slices are well separated, in case there is not enough space, cook in more batches. Serve