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    Friday, April 27, 2007

    Things I have done with Vegetables over the last couple of weeks as our Main Meal

    Orecchiette with Bacon and Green Cauliflower

    Orecchiette is a pasta from Puglia, it means little ears and that’s just what they look like.
    They blend well with green vege and good oil.
    After watching Ciao Italia in Puglia I felt the urgent need to try a dish with this pasta.
    I raced out bought a trendy green cauliflower which is very pretty,superb colour.
    I though the bacon was necessary, Dale loves mushrooms but he isn’t keen on bacon.
    I was a bit tricky, chopped the bacon into tiny pieces to hide them then added the mushrooms in chunks.
    It was delicious, he loved it.
    Ruth from Once Upon a Feast is hosting Presto Pasta Nights she posts them every Friday
    Have a look if you would like some other different dishes to brighten up your week.

    1 green cauliflower
    1 tablespoons olive oil
    2 rashers bacon finely chopped
    200 gms white mushroom halved
    2 cloves garlic crushed with a little sea salt

    150 gms orecchiette
    Parmesan Cheese
    Extra virgin olive oil
    Freshly ground black pepper

    Separate the cauliflower into florets and blanch in a big pot of well salted boiling water, about 2 minutes.
    Strain out and immediately put into iced water to shock the vege. This keeps the nice green colour. When cool drain.
    Into the same water add the pasta and cooked until al dente. About 11 minutes

    While the pasta is cooking;
    In a large pan heat olive oil and quickly crisp the bacon
    Add the mushroom halves
    Toss around and add garlic
    Stir well
    Add cauliflower continue to toss around for another 3-4 minutes
    It should be salty enough with the bacon and garlic, but it’s up to you
    You may need to add more.
    Drain pasta and add to pan.
    Serve in pasta bowls;
    Good grate of parmesan and good grind of freshly ground black pepper.
    Drizzle over some extra virgin olive oil.

    A lovely light dinner
    Pretty as well.

    Funny how you chop and change a menu when you are having friends for dinner.

    While I was pondering what to have for a first course. I flicked on my TV and
    Rick Stein was making this salad.
    Once again end of summer food.
    A nice ripe melon, the last of the outdoor tomatoes, some goats cheese all blended up with
    a simple dressing. I added a little chili for an extra hit

    How mouth watering is this?

    So take 1 rock melon in diagonal slices
    1 cucumber peeled and sliced diagonally
    3 tomatoes sliced
    1 x round goats cheese sliced
    Mint roughly ripped
    Arrange on a platter

    3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
    1 tablespoons red wine vinegar
    Sea salt
    1 green chili finely chopped

    Pour the dressing over the salad.

    A little Ciabatta to soak up the juices. Very nice.

    Spanish Tortilla
    Sometimes the problem with making tortilla is flipping it.
    The easy way out of this conundrum is cooking it in a pan that will go into the oven.
    Then you can slide the finished dish into a plate for serving.

    I serve this with a green salad tossed with Jamie Oliver’s Quickly Pickled Red Onions
    They are so tasty and tart, really ifts the lettuce.

    Make the onions first…they need marinating for at least an hour

    1 red onion finely sliced
    2 tablespoons of a good white wine vinegar.
    Sea salt

    Put your onions into a bowl
    Pour over vinegar and sprinkle with a good teaspoon salt
    Squeeze with your hands to get the onions well covered with the marinade.
    Leave to marinate
    When you are ready to use squeeze all the liquid out of the onions and spread them over
    your salad. Just some crispy lettuce and cucumber slices.

    Now onto the tortilla.
    Heat oven to 200C
    For 2 people
    1 large potato peeled and cubed
    1 courgette sliced
    1 onion chopped
    6 eggs
    Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
    2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

    Pop the potato into the microwave about 3 minutes with a little water.
    to just fork tender. Drain
    Meanwhile heat oil in pan add onions and courgettes and sauté till tender.
    Remove from pan and mix well with the potatoes.
    Wipe the pan with a paper towel.

    Beat the eggs and add to the vege
    Mix together
    Add another tablespoon of oil to the pan and heat it.
    Pour in the egg mixture.
    Shake it around and let the eggs sit while the bottom is browning lift the edges to check up.
    The top will still be liquid. Pop into a hot oven. It will puff up and turn golden.
    Probably about 5 minutes.

    Egg Fried Rice
    I love fried rice, but don’t you know that you always crave it when there are no left overs.
    But of course it is really quite easy to prepare…you just need a little time.

    I watched Kylie Kwong cook her version of Egg Fried Rice and had to make it then and there…Just boil your rice till al dente, careful not to overdo it, drain and lay out on a swiss roll tin and into the fridge to quickly chill.
    Kylie added white cabbage to her dish but I only had green beans and they worked well…looks pretty too.

    1 cup of uncooked rice yields 2 cups cooked rice
    Plenty for 2 people

    1 small red onion finely chopped
    2 tablespoons peanut oil
    4 eggs
    4 spring onions chopped
    2 tablespoons grated ginger
    Slosh soy sauce
    1 teaspoon chili flakes (optional …I love a bit of heat)

    6 green beans
    Sea salt

    You need to have everything ready to go as with any Chinese food.

    Put eggs, spring onions, ginger soy sauce and chili flakes into a bowl
    Whisk up and reserve
    Blanch the beans and cut into discs
    Chop the red onion

    Heat your wok and add peanut oil when just smoking add red onions
    Toss around about a minute and then add whisked egg mixture

    Move the egg around it will start to scramble, throw in the cooked rice
    And mix well.
    Add beans you only need to warm these…we want the crunch.
    Sprinkle with a little sea salt

    For extra colour and a good may like to serve with some chopped red chilies sprinkled with soy sauce.

    It was gobbled down.


    Ruth Daniels said...

    Every dish looks wonderful. I'll be adding the orecchiette to Presto Pasta Nights and, frankly, trying all the other delightful looking dishes too.

    Check back for the roundup on Friday.

    So Simple said...

    Thanks Ruth look forward to Friday