With the weather being so temperamental at the moment I feel a bit lost with what to prepare in the kitchen. It’s been raining like mad which makes me feel cool and cosy feeling the need for a warmer meal. On the other hand it’s just so humid so something really light just feels like the right way to go. I’ve concocted this cheeky little number which is really light and healthy, but also nice and warm as it’s served fresh from the grill.
1 aubergine, sliced
1 sweet pointed red pepper, sliced
1 tbsp Tahini
1 dsp pine nuts
Crushed black pepper
Place the aubergine and pepper onto a baking tray. Season with salt and generously with the crushed black pepper.
Drizzle over olive oil and grill on medium-high or 200 in an electric grill.
Grill for 10 minutes, then flip the vegetables over and put back in the grill for an additional 10 minutes or remove the tray when the vegetables have charred and have softened.
Place the aubergine and pepper on to the serving dish of choice. Drizzle over the tahini and lemon juice and scatter over the pine nuts and serve.
I know what you may be thinking, goji berry, really? Initially I thought I might be on something but I tell you what, don’t knock it until you try it. Peaches are one of my absolute favourite fruits, they are so delicious and juicy. The delectable addition of the goji berry is a real game changer. Not only does it bring an added texture to the crumble it also absorbs all the juices when it’s baked and becomes these little bursts of heaven with every mouthful.
70g Self-raising flour
30g light brown sugar (for crumble)
1 tbsp light brown sugar (for peaches)
2 tbsp dried goji berries
1 tsp cinnamon
4 peaches, sliced and cored
35g crushed walnuts
Preheat the oven to 170°.
In a bowl, add the sliced peaches, 1 tbsp of sugar and the goji berries and mix thoroughly.
Spread the goji and peach mix evenly on a baking tray.
In a separate bowl add the butter, sugar, cinnamon and flour and crumble together using your fingertips. Add the walnut pieces and thoroughly crumble together.
Sprinkle the crumble evenly over the peaches. Place in the oven and bake for 20 minutes or until nicely golden.
Best served hot and with a drizzle of single cream.
Pesto, tomato and burrata, I’m sorry but you really can’t get much better than that?!?! Gosh my mouth is watering so much. All I can really say is just give this a go, believe me, you won’t be disappointed!
250g sweet mixed baby tomatoes- halved
Basil Pesto (can use store bought or you can make your own)
150g Burrata cheese
320g ready rolled puff pastry
For the Pesto:
4 tbsp pine nuts
8 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 large handful of fresh basil
2 cloves of garlic
2 tsp lemon juice
4 tbsp freshly grated parmesan cheese
Salt (only if needed)
Preheat the oven to 200°. Remove the puff pastry from the fridge at least half an hour before use. Unroll it onto the baking tray of choice and score a border around the pastry.
To make the pesto: place all the ingredients in a food processor and pulse gently. For this particular dish I didn’t blitz the pesto until smooth as having small pieces in the pine nuts bring added bite and texture. Taste the pesto before use and only salt if it is needed as I find that the parmesan brings saltiness itself.
Spread an even layer of pesto inside the pastry border, making sure every corner and area is covered.
Evenly distribute the tomatoes, with the flat side facing upwards.
Season the tomatoes with black pepper from a grinder to add extra bite and flavour. Drizzle a little olive oil on the tomatoes and place in the oven for 15-20 minutes or until the pastry has risen, is gold in colour and the tomatoes are looking blistered and juicy.
Using your hands, tear apart the burrata and place around the tart.
I love fruit shakes and smoothies this time of the year. It’s healthier and so much more inviting when the sun is shining. I’ve chosen soya milk for this concoction as I find that using whole milk can sometimes be quite heavy and even though it is more than flavourful and indulgent I find that when it gets quite hot I just want to keep it light on the stomach.
A side note: If you store your soya milk outside of the fridge add a few ice cubes to the blender just to chill everything through and make it that little bit more refreshing. Additionally, if you are a vegan give this recipe a go minus the greek yogurt, it’s just as sweet and delicious.
200g fresh strawberries, green stems removed
200ml soya milk, sweetened
1tbsp maple syrup
1 heaped tbsp greek yogurt
In a blender add all ingredients and blitz until smooth. Distribute the shake between two glasses.