Saturday, 25 January 2014

Vegan Chilli con carne

Serving suggestion
Dinner for 2
·         1 tin of kidney beans - rinsed
Some of the ingredients for the dish
·         1 tin of tomatoes
·         1 medium onion - chopped
·         4 cloves of garlic - chopped
·         ½ a red pepper and ½ green pepper – roughly cut
·         1 teaspoon of cumin powder
·         1 tea spoon coriander powder
·         A bit of black pepper
·         2 small chilli peppers
·         Thyme
·         Small bunch of parsley
·         Rapeseed oil
·         1 stock cube melted in 250ml of water
·         20 medium soya meatballs
·         1 cup of barley
Start by soaking the meat balls in boiled and salted water for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes squeeze out the water and cut them as they would have doubles size.
In a hot pan with 3 table spoons of rapeseed oil fry the chopped onion with thyme for 2 minutes and add the meatballs with garlic, salt and black pepper and fry until the meat has absorbed the flavours. This should take 5 minutes.
When the meat is brown, add the green and red peppers, the tomatoes, the cumin and the coriander. Cover and let simmer for 10 minutes. Now add the kidney beans with the chillies and 250ml of vegetable stock, stir, cover and let the beans absorb the flavours for 15 minutes. Don’t forget to stir from time to time so the bottom of the pan don’t burn. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary
In the meantime, rinse the barley and to remove the starch covering it. Please it in a pan and cover with water. Barley can be hard to cook. So, water is 2 measures for 1 measure of barley. Here we’ve got 1 glass of barley so, 2 glasses of water will be needed to cook it. Also add 1 teaspoon of oil and a bit of salt. Then, leave the pan open and let the water evaporate for 15 minutes on high heat. There should be a little bit of water left. After 15 minutes stir the barley, put the heat to low and cover the pan. This will allow the barley to finish cooking with steam mainly for another 10 minutes. Just before serving, add the finely chopped parsley.
Note: Did you know that parsley is a great source of antioxidants, folic acids, vitamin K and C? I didn’t know that, but I love parley!

Sunday, 19 January 2014

Chestnut and Broccoli Salad

Serving suggestion
This dish could be a starter, but it is great for lunch with a little glass of wine.

Ingredients for the salad
·         1 medium onion
 ·         A hand full of crinkled beetroots
·         5 whole chestnuts in brine
·         1 green pepper
·         1 medium tomato
·         About 200 grs of broccoli
·         A hand full of roasted almond flakes.
·         A pinch of thyme and salt

Start finely cut the whole onion and fry with a pinch of salt and the thyme. Once the onion is brown, set aside and leave to cool down.

Floret the broccoli, cut the crinkled beetroots, roughly cut the chestnuts, the green pepper and the tomato.

Place all the above in a bowl and toss. Then, add the fried onion and crush the roasted almonds on the lot, mix well and serve.

No need for a vinaigrette here. The fired onion and the flavouring from the crinkled beetroot in some ways removed the need for a vinaigrette for this dish.