Nothing beats a simple salad, especially when the sun is shining and you have a chance to sit and savour a little bit of goodness. In my opinion the dressing is as important as the salad components – it brings the whole plate together and gives everything a satisfying lift. Here the saltiness of the olives paired with the lemon in the dressing keeps everything light and the crunch of the cucumber makes this a joy to eat.
1/3 cucumber, cut into thin rounds
10 pitted green olives, halved
1 tbsp olive oil
1/4 tsp oregano
1 dsp lemon
A handful of parsley, finely chopped
Ground black pepper
In a small bowl, mix the olive oil, oregano, lemon and season with the black pepper.
Using the dish you’re serving your salad in, evenly distribute the cucumber, olives and parsley.
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.
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.
Delicious, chilled and cucumber perfectly sums up this weeks recipe. Even though the rainy wet weather has returned it has been incredibly humid and still rather warm. The feeling of having a warm hot meal still doesn’t tickle my taste buds and so this cucumber concoction is the way to go. Personally I think that cucumbers are underrated and can be so versatile and refreshing. An ingredient that is readily available all year round and can make such a simple dish so tasty.
1 cucumber, deseeded and roughly chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 shallot, roughly chopped
1 garlic clove
1tsp dried mint
1tbsp lime juice
1/2 tsp oregano
1 tbsp yogurt
Extra virgin olive oil (for serving)
Put all ingredients into a blender and blitz until smooth.
Leave in the fridge for at least an hour before serving.
Happy weekend you lovely people! It’s a beautiful day, a fantastic time to be out and enjoy the glorious weather. This weeks recipe is just what you need for a light and refreshing meal or even side dish, full of flavour and perfect if you are going for a picnic or having some friends over for lunch in the garden.
100ml boiling water
70g dried soft apricots, cut into small pieces
100g feta cheese, cut into small chunks
2 tbsp seed mix (the one I used included: sunflower, pumpkin, hemp seeds and golden linseed)
1 tbsp maple syrup
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp lemon juice
Crushed black pepper
Start by placing the couscous in a heatproof bowl. Pour in the boiling water, cover with cling film and leave for 5-10 minutes.
In the meantime make the dressing by mixing the olive oil, maple syrup and lemon together in a another bowl.
Fluff the couscous with a fork (and move to the dish or bowl you desire), add the apricots, feta and seeds and season with crushed black pepper.
Now that it is becoming warmer and brighter outside I am starting to feel those ‘summer’ vibes. I cannot wait for it to get really warm so that we can say goodbye to the coats and scarves for a few months. This Choc Ice Milkshake sorted me right out the other day when the day was looking so glorious. I really wanted a cheeky cold drink but didn’t want to venture out to Starbucks or Costa Coffee. Luckily I have Choc Ice ice creams stashed in the freezer and thought I’d jazz it up a little with a couple of extra components to make a really simple chocolatey milkshake.
2 choc ice ice creams
2 tsp chocolate drinking powder (I used Cadbury’s)
Put all the ingredients to a blender and blitz until smooth. Pour the mixture out evenly into two tumbler glasses.
Let’s just keep it real, keep it simple and keeping it delicious with this recipe. Unreal how quick and simple this is to prepare and just so flavourful, definitely one that I will be going back to a fair few times as we draw closer to summer.
1 can (400g) red kidney beans (drained and rinsed)
1 handful of flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped
1 spring onion, finely chopped
2 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp dried mint
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp garlic granules
Start of by making the marinade by adding the lemon, mint, olive oil, garlic granules, salt and pepper in a bowl and give it a good mix.
In a separate bowl put the beans, parsley and spring onion.
Drizzle the marinade over the bean mixture and give it another thorough mix.
Given the considerably warm weather we have been having, this recipe is exactly what you need. Fantastic to have just as a light lunch if you’re not up to cooking (I don’t blame you!) The juice from the fresh tomatoes really brings this dish to life, lots of flavours, really light and takes little time to prepare.
1 can (400g) black beans, drained and rinsed
3 finely chopped fresh tomatoes
1 tbsp olive oil
A small handful of fresh parsley, finely chopped
2 spring onions, finely chopped
1/2 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp cumin
Firstly, start by making the marinade for the salad. In a bowl, put the juice of half a lime, the paprika, cumin, oil, season with salt and pepper and give it a mix.
In a separate bowl had all the remaining prepped ingredients.
Drizzle on the marinade and give it a good mix. Taste and season again with salt and pepper if needed.