Watermelon Salad

Finally!  I am back in the swing of things, well, sort of, I am getting there.  I have missed you all so much and feel I have missed out on so much news.  Please do fill me in if there is something I should know. 🙂

Sorry to all you lovely folk in the northern hemisphere, its going to be a while before you can enjoy this lovely salad but can tell you it is well worth the wait.  Simplicity at its best.

Our summer dining is often enjoyed al fresco with not much time at all spent in the kitchen which makes this super easy three ingredient salad the perfect accompaniment for a braai (barbecue) and actually fits nicely into my un-recipe category.

Watermelon salad

Watermelon Salad

Ingredients

Watermelon chopped
Sliced onion
Feta cheese crumbled

Method

  1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl.

See, it couldn’t be easier. 🙂

Un-Recipe – A bowl of pasta

I cannot remember when I last shared a un-recipe and this one couldn’t be easier.  I am starting to think I am craving so much pasta because of the running as I wasn’t that much of a pasta eater before.  I must confess to not making my own pasta for this dish, I simply opened a packet of store bought, well wouldn’t be much of an un-recipe if I had.

Bowl of pasta

Un-Recipe – Bowl of Pasta

Ingredients

Pasta of choice
Olive oil
Garlic crushed
Coriander chopped
Salt and black pepper
Cheese of choice grated

Method

  1. Boil pasta as per package instruction.
  2. Stir in a good glug of olive oil with the garlic and coriander.
  3. Season with salt and black pepper and top with cheese.

Warm winters day clean out the fridge salad

Now how’s that for a title!  Quite apt if you were in our kitchen yesterday just before lunch time.   As we do, I have been storing a few bits and bobs in the line of leftovers the last couple of days and thought it time to use them up plus there were little dregs of sauces which I just don’t have the heart to throw away – I always think I can add them to something else but in reality never do, so, it was time to clean out the fridge.  What resulted was a taste bud tantalising and very satisfying lunch.

Winters day salad

My salad consisted of crispy baby gem lettuce, onion, cucumber, tomato, coriander, roast chicken and gammon with a drizzling of mayo, sweet chilli sauce and black pepper which I enjoyed in a nice cosy sunny spot in the lounge.

There was a little more motivation to emptying the fridge but you will have to wait to see why.  Sadly no, we are not getting a new fridge, well not yet anyway.

Un-Recipe – Roasted Sweet Potato

I nearly forgot about our un-recipes – can’t remember when I last shared one with you.  Yesterday was one of those “suckers-on-my-butt” kind of days and didn’t leave the computer until it was nearly supper time.  I know, I know – I should have planned ahead.  I needed food but wasn’t much in the mood for cooking so a quick non complicated meal was required.  These tasty sweet potatoes were the perfect accompaniment to some left over roast pork.

Roasted sweet potato

Un-Recipe – Roasted Sweet Potatoes

Ingredients

Sweet potatoes
Grapeseed oil
Salt
Ground cinnamon
Ground ginger

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. Peel and slice, dice or wedge sweet potatoes.
  3. Place sweet potatoes on a baking tray and drizzle with a little oil salt and the spices.
  4. Bake until sweet potatoes are cooked.

Roasted Tomato & Chicken Pasta

This really should fall into the un-recipe category and into the should make every week category too.  This flavourful meal came about when I found some forgotten tomatoes in the crisper looking quite sad and slightly wrinkled.  While waiting for the tomatoes to roast , you can as I did, enjoy a bubble bath with a glass of wine. 😉 With next weeks version, I shall lose the chicken and replace it with anchovies and try roma tomatoes for a more robust and slightly sweeter flavour.

Roasted Tomato & Chicken Pasta

Ingredients

Tomatoes halved
Garlic cloves unpeeled
Olive or grapeseed oil
Sea salt and black pepper
Dried origanum
Pasta of choice
Chicken breasts
Italian herbs
Chilli powder

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 220°C.
  2. Place the tomatoes and garlic cloves on a baking tray and drizzles with oil and season well with salt, pepper and origanum.
  3. Bake for approximately 45 minutes.
  4. Blitz the tomatoes and garlic (squeezed out of it’s skin) using a stick blender and beaker.  Add another drizzle of olive oil and stir through.
  5. Cook the pasta according to the package instructions.
  6. Fry the chicken breasts over a medium heat in butter and oil seasoned with the Italian herbs and chilli powder.
  7. Once cooked slice into strips.
  8. Serve the tomato sauce and chicken over the pasta with an optional second glass of wine.

Baked Spuddy with left over Roast Chicken

Well, this is a bit of a cheat as you bake the spud in the microwave so you don’t get that beautiful crispy outer skin but it certainly satisfies the hunger pang a lot quicker than baking it in the oven.  This is one of those meals which should really qualify as an Un-Recipe and one I enjoy all too often when Pete is away.  As you know, I have my butt planted on my office chair for too many hours in a day which means I need a satisfying meal in minutes.  It’s not because I have not thought ahead of time, it’s just that turning what I took out in the morning into a meal would just take too long.

Baked Spuddy with left over Roast Chicken

Ingredients

1-2 potato/s per person
Butter
Thin slices of onion
Crushed garlic clove/s
Left over roast chicken cut into pieces – proof that I cooked the night before
Mayonnaise
Chopped parsley

Method

  1. Pierce the potato a few times and bake for 3 to 6 minutes (depending on the size) on high.
  2. Cut the potato as desired and top with the remaining ingredients.

Good old faithful Macaroni and Cheese

For somebody who doesn’t cook pasta very often, I have made up for lost time recently.  Macaroni and Cheese is one of those super comfort meals that you can eat with your feet up on the couch while watching TV – not that I would ever do that…  Frying some onion and bacon to add into the mix makes this an even more scrumity, not to mention the truck load of cheese.  If you prefer to bake your Mac ‘n Cheese before serving, top with a breadcrumbs and parsley mixture before baking.

Macaroni and Cheese

Ingredients

250g macaroni or pasta of choice
1 onion sliced
6 rashers bacon diced
80ml butter
80ml flour
500ml milk
2 cups cheddar cheese grated
5ml chicken stock powder
Pepper to taste
1 large tomato chopped

Method

  1. Cook the macaroni according to the package instructions.
  2. Fry the onion in a little olive oil or butter until lightly browned, add the bacon and fry until cooked through.  Set aside.
  3. In a pot, melt the butter and the flour and stir through to form a roux.
  4. Add the milk and continue to stir until thickened.
  5. Add the cheese and stir through until incorporated.
  6. Add the stock powder and pepper to taste.
  7. Stir in the bacon and onion and macaroni.
  8. Stir in the tomato just before serving.
  9. Serve as is or bake for 20 minutes in the oven preheated to 180°C.

Un-Recipe – Sardines on Crackers

It has been over 3 months since I last shared an un-recipe with you, so thought it high time to share another favourite.  I remember eating sardines on toast for Sunday evening dinners growing up.  Mom would always cook a huge roast for Sunday lunch with all the trimmings and extra so all we needed was something to top up until Monday morning breakfast.  I enjoyed this tasty snack on crackers instead of toast for a change as my lunch yesterday, half of which I had to share with my fur children – minus the crackers and vinegar that is.

Un-Recipe – Sardines on Crackers

Ingredients

Tin sardines
Vinegar
Onion finely chopped – regrettably I was a touch lazy and skipped this
Salt & pepper
Crackers of choice – I used poppyseed crackers

Method

  1. Lightly mash the sardines with the other ingredients.
  2. Spoon onto crackers.

Un-Recipe – Lazy or Busy Day Cucumber Sandwich

It has been a long while since I shared an un-recipe with you and yesterdays lunch was very much just that, an un-recipe sarmie.  It was another one of “those” days where I could not pull myself away from the computer until it was too late to make anything more than a quick sandwich for lunch.  A very satisfying and very moreish sarmie mind you, one which I quite often enjoy.

Un-Recipe – Cucumber Sandwich

Ingredients

2 slices of brown bread
Butter
Mayonnaise
Cucumber slices
Salt and Pepper

Method

  1. Butter the bread.
  2. Spread a layer of mayonnaise on one slice.
  3. Top with the cucumber, salt and pepper.
  4. Place the second slice of bread on top and cut in half.

Un-Recipe – Chicken and Tomato Sandwich

On occasion when Pete is away, I have been known to get carried away and seem to get suckers on my butt as I never leave my computer for very long.  Recently was such a day (and night) which meant cooking supper was not top priority and I only thought of it when my worm was awake and needed to be fed immediately!  Seriously quick and easy would have to do – hence the Chicken and Tomato Sandwich was born, which made for a delicious light supper and was perfectly balanced with a Gin and Tonic 🙂 which I enjoyed at my desk.

Un-Recipe – Chicken and Tomato Sandwich

Ingredients

1 chicken breast slightly flattened with the heel of your hand
Smoky barbecue spice
Butter
2 slices of brown bread
Homemade Mayonnaise
Homemade Guinness Mustard
1 tomato sliced

Method

  1. Fry the chicken in a little butter sprinkled with the spice.
  2. Butter the bread and spread the mayonnaise on one slice and the mustard on the other.
  3. Top one of the slices  with the sliced tomato.
  4. Once cooked cut the chicken breast into slices and place on top of the tomato.
  5. Top with the second slice of bread and cut in half.

Un-Recipe – Bacon and Mushroom Omelet

For some peculiar reason, I had just two rashers of bacon left over in the fridge.  Stranger things have been known to happen though.  I could not live with myself if I let them go to waste so very quickly whipped them out of the fridge along with 2 mushrooms, and egg (which had 2 yolks :-))  and some cheddar cheese and turned it all into a lovely little omelet.  This was the ideal super quick, tasty and easy lunch.  Think I may have to always keep 2 spare rashers of bacon going forward.

Un-Recipe – Bacon and Mushroom Omelet

Ingredients

2 rashers bacon chopped
2 mushrooms sliced
Vegetable spice
1 egg lightly beaten
2 tbsp grated cheddar cheese

Method

  1. Fry the bacon and mushrooms until browned and sprinkle on vegetable spice.
  2. Add the egg and grated cheese.
  3. Fold sides into the middle and turn.

Un-Recipe – Banana Milkshake

It has been quite a while since I posted an un-recipe and this family loved Banana Milkshake is great for the beautiful days we are enjoying at the moment.  Summer is almost here – YAY!  🙂  The measurements of ingredients depend on the size of banana you are using and if you use a very ripe or not so ripe banana.  I like bananas that are just ripe so some times add a little bit of sweetness to enhance the flavour of the banana.  If you prefer your bananas very ripe, I am sure you could omit adding any additional sweetness.  You can jazz it up by adding ice cream or even a dash of whiskey.

Un-Recipe – Banana Milkshake

Ingredients

1 banana peeled
2.5ml honey or brown sugar
5ml vanilla essence
250ml milk

Method

  1. Place all the ingredients in a beaker and blend using a stick blender.

Un-Recipe – Egg and Tomato Sandwich

I love un-recipes for a quick and tasty lunch.  Un-recipe’s also fall into the comfort food category for me, which is a double bonus.  The last short while, whilst sorting out our home and garden, un-recipe’s of sorts has been on the cards for lunch – either that or leftovers from the previous evenings dinns.  I love eggs and tomatoes together in a sarmie or on a slice of hot buttered toast, especially when the egg yolk is still lovely and runny – there is something magical that happens with an egg and tomato – not sure what but it’s yummy.  Please let me know how you enjoy this moreish sarmie if you give it a try.

Un-Recipe Egg and Tomato Sandwich

Ingredients

2 slices fresh white bread – brown just isn’t the same for this
Butter
Sliced tomato
Salt and pepper to taste
Fried egg

Method

  1. Butter the bread and top the one slice with the sliced tomatoes and salt and pepper to taste.
  2.  Add your fried egg and top with the second slice of bread.
  3. Cut and enjoy.