Asparagus, Artichoke and Roast Pepper Salad with Feta, Olives and Parmesan

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So there are a few cheats in this one, but honestly one of the yummiest flavour combinations that will transform your mid week meals into something special! Super quick to make and packed with deliciousness!

  • 3 cups of baby spinach leaves
  • 1 tub of marinated artichokes
  • 1 Roasted red pepper with skin removed
  • About 10 pitted black olives
  • 1 round of feta cheese
  • 2 cups of fresh green asparagus
  • Fresh Parmesan Shavings
  • Rocket leaves (Arugula) to garnish
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil to drizzle
  • Balsamic Glaze to drizzle

Wash and drain the spinach leaves and arrange on a serving plate / dish and drizzle a teeny bit of balsamic glaze over to dress lightly.

Steam the asparagus for 5 -6 minutes and then add them to ice water to cool. Then remove and pat dry and season with salt and pepper and put aside.

Arrange the sliced roast pepper, olives, feta, artichokes and seasoned asparagus on top of the spinach leaves and drizzle with a little olive oil.

Top with parmesan shavings and rocket leaves and then drizzle the balsamic glaze over the top and serve.

Enjoy x

Homemade Flatbread with Bacon Jam, Camembert, Roast balsamic figs and walnuts.

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The beauty of flatbread is that you can pretty much imagine your favourite ingredients and pile them on! This is a topping that I did because I just love these ingredients together and they worked beautifully on the flatbread. Bacon Jam might sound strange but it is just crispy bacon blended with caramelised onions and it is ridiculously addictive!

For the Bacon Jam 

  • 500g bacon
  • 2 yellow onions
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • Salt and pepper

Cook the bacon in a frying pan until nice and crispy and the fat has rendered well. Take the bacon out and set aside. Keep the bacon grease in the pan.

Slice the onions thinly and add to the pan and stir to coat well with the bacon fat. Turn the heat low and cook for an hour stirring every now and then. When the onions have darkened then add the balsamic vinegar and sugar and season with salt and pepper and stir for about 5 – 10 minutes until it thickens.

Add the onion mixture and bacon into a food processor and blend until the desired consistency is formed.

For the roasted figs

  • 8 – 10 fresh figs
  • Balsamic glaze

Cut the figs into quarters and lay on a baking sheet and drizzle with balsamic glaze and grill in the oven until browned and set aside.

For the rest of the toppings

  • 2 rounds of camembert cheese (at room temperature)
  • 100g chopped walnuts, roasted in a dry frying pan for a few minutes
  • Fresh Rocket (Arugula) to garnish

Spread a layer of bacon jam on the flatbreads, sprinkle on the roasted figs and chopped camembert and top with the walnuts and rocket and serve immediately.

Serves 4 -5

 

 

 

Pan-Fried Gnocchi and Blue Cheese Salad

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I am LOVING blue cheese at the moment and am loving experimenting with different ways of using it. I came across this recipe and juggled it slightly and was super stoked with the outcome! All  the beautiful flavours of blue cheese buddies with the soft comforting yumminess of the soft, scrumptious gnocchi.

Ingredients

  • 4 – 5 Tablespoons of Butter
  • 1 Package of dried gnocchi
  • A pinch of salt
  • 50g Walnuts
  • 200g or a small pack of streaky bacon
  • 1 large clove of garlic, crushed
  • 50g Dried cranberries
  • 1 small red onion, finely sliced
  • A big bunch of fresh Rocket (Arugula)
  • 80g Blue cheese of your choice

 

Method 

  • Melt the butter in a large frying pan. Add the gnocchi straight from the packaging to the hot melted butter and saute until golden brown. (5 – 10 minutes)
  • Add the walnuts and garlic to the pan with the gnocchi and cook for about 3 minutes
  • Put the gnocchi and walnuts into a warm dish and return the pan with any juice to the stove and add the bacon, onions and cranberries and saute until the onions are soft. add the Gnocchi and walnuts and toss and leave to cool for a little bit.
  • Add the rocket and toss together and crumble the blue cheese on top with a bit more rocket to garnish and serve immediately.

 

Pork Fillet with Roast Crushed Baby Potatoes, Prosciutto and Balsamic Dressing

 

Pork Fillet with potatoes and balsamic dressing

I’m halfway through my pregnancy and the first trimester pretty much obliterated my desire to cook! Last night I was desperate for some ‘proper’ and interesting food and found this recipe on the Taste website. It was very easy and pretty quick to make with a really fantastic result. The pork fillet turned out beautifully and tender and the combination of proscuitto, rocket, balsamic vinegar, whole grain mustard and red onion is such a winner.  My poor family have obviously been a bit deprived of tasty food and devoured it! I will definitely make this again! Its absolutely divine!  Enjoy!

 

2 tablespoons olive oil

Leaves from 1 large sprig rosemary

4 garlic cloves, sliced

750g piece pork fillet, trimmed

500g baby potatoes

1 red onion, cut into wedges

4 slices prosciutto

Rocket leaves, to serve

 

Balsamic dressing

2 1/2 tablespoons olive oil

1 1/2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

1 teaspoon grainy mustard

 

Method

  • Preheat the oven to 190°C.
  • Mix 1 tablespoon of the olive oil with the rosemary leaves and sliced garlic.
  • Brush a little over the pork fillet.
  • Par-boil the potatoes for 10 – 15 minutes, then drain and lightly crush. Toss the potatoes and onion wedges with the remaining garlic and rosemary oil, then place on a large baking tray and roast in the oven for 25 minutes, turning occasionally.
  • Meanwhile, heat the remaining olive oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the pork filet and cook for 2-3 minutes, turning to brown all over.
  • Season well with salt and pepper.
  • Remove the pork and add to the baking tray with the potatoes and onion, and roast for the remaining cooking time (20 minutes). For the final 5 minutes, add the slices of prosciutto to the tray to crisp.
  • While everything is cooking, make the dressing. Place the olive oil, balsamic and mustard in a jar and season with salt and pepper. Shake well.
  • To serve, place some rocket onto each plate and divide the potatoes and onion among them. Slice the pork thickly, place on top and drizzle with the balsamic dressing. Place a shard of crisp prosciutto on top of each.

Serves 3 – 4

Recipe and photo from the Taste.au website.

Oriental Chicken Salad

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This recipe was given to me by a friend. I tried it the same night and absolutely loved it! It’s light and full of wonderful flavour. The ricotta is also such a lovely touch and works so well with the chilli. It makes a great change to throwing some Feta onto a salad!  Thanks Nikki for a great addition to the blog and my meal planning 🙂

2 Handfulls of rocket

1 handfull of fresh watercress

2 handfulls baby spinach

2 small oranges

1 block or 1 tub of Ricotta cheese

3 Spring onions, finely sliced

3 baby marrows, thinly sliced (lengthways)

6 – 8 baby rosa or cherry tomatoes

4 chicken breast fillets

1 Tbsp chicken spice or BBQ spice

Salt and pepper to season

2 tsp dried chilli flakes

1 tsp dried origanum

Dressing:

1 tbsp Soya sauce

2 tsp Honey

2 Tbsp Olive oil

Salt & pepper to taste

A squirt of lemon juice

  • Slice the chicken thinly into strips, season with chicken spice and salt and pepper and brown in a frying pan with a little bit of olive oil.  Set aside to cool
  • Line a baking tray with foil. Break the ricotta into crumbs onto the baking tray. Sprinkle with olive oil, salt and pepper, dried origanum and chilli flakes.
  • Grill in the oven until golden brown and then set aside to cool.
  • Grill the marrow slices in a griddle pan with some olive oil. (You can serve it raw if you like)
  • Prepare salad greens and other raw veg.
  • Cut the skin off the oranges and then slice into segments.
  • Arrange the rocket, watercress and spinach on a plate and top with the marrows, chicken, ricotta, tomatoes and orange slices.

For the dressing:

  • Mix all the dressing ingredients together giving it a good whisk and then drizzle over the salad when you are ready to serve.

Serves 4

Recipe by Nikki Nilsson