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Archive for the ‘Vegetarian’ Category

Spinach, feta and sundried-tomato pastry triangles

Hey guys,

Sorry it’s been SOOOOOOOOOOO long. I’ve been busy, two jobs, friends, the internet, whatever. Anyway, I see Nurul has made pastries for her last recipe. Unfortunately I also made pastries back in March but didn’t post them so here they are now. Mine are different from Nurul’s but like hers, they are my own recipe and I have photographed every step for you!
As you may or may not be able to tell by now, Nurul and I are a little competitive and it’s cool for you readers to be able to see different ways of making similar things because everyone cooks differently so some things that work amazingly for one person, may not work well for someone else. One must try many different methods to find a cooking technique that best fits them.

Ingredients:
Puff pastry
Frozen spinach
Feta
Sundried tomatoes
Garlic
Egg
Chilli

First step of prep is to chop your sundried tomatoes, basically just dice them or slice them into strips, up to you.
You should also take your puff pastry out of the freezer now, you’ll need about 3 pieces to make a good plate full of puffy yumminess. Just leave it out at room temperature to thaw.

Second step of prep is to boil your frozen spinach. Basically if you just put it in the pot with cold water and put it on high, by the time it gets to the boil, your spinach will be ready. It doesn’t need to be cooked, just defrosted.

Cut feta into cubes and put into bowl, you could also crumble it into the bowl if you want, it’ll all get crumbled in the end anyway. Add chopped sundried tomatoes.

Defrosted spinach. Take off the heat and drain in a sieve. Using a colander may mean losing some of the spinach bits, the holes are too big.

Drained spinach. But the spinach is still too wet to go into the mixture, it would make it too watery so we must squeeze out all the water! I recommend running some cold water over the spinach before squeezing otherwise it’ll be too hot!

You can use your hand to squeeze little clumps of spinach at a time or put the whole lot of spinach into a tea-towel and squeeze it that way.

Add the spinach to the mixture, along with some chilli and chopped, crushed garlic. Stir. Try and break up clumps of feta so it’s more crumbly. Add an egg to combine and stir again til combined.

Your pastry should now be thawed. Chop into squares.

Put about a tablespoon of mixture into the centre of each square. Put each square onto a greased tray.

Fold the squares in half diagonally into triangles.

Use any remaining egg, with a little milk to wash each pastry (it makes them extra crispy!), prick each pastry so they don’t explode.

Put in oven at 200 degrees for 10 minutes or until golden. Since there’s no meat, you don’t have to worry about anything being uncooked, as long as the pastry is cooked, everything else should be fine and yummy!

Here is the final product! They’re super yummy, I highly recommend them!

Tory.

Spinach and Feta Puff Pastries!

WOW. Anyone else feel like mid-semester blends into end of semester far too soon? IT JUST DOESNT STOP. Why the heck would you make a “mid semester test” at the end of the semester? Yuck.
Anyway, Tory and I are getting ridiculously busy, but we are still trying to post here and there as much as we can 🙂

I made these the other day because feta was on special (and still is, apparently so go get it!) And i thought it would be a cool idea to try something new. So here we go!
I’m trying this new thing where I don’t take so many photos, but just enough so you all get the gist of what’s happening.

Ingredients
1 package puff pastry [filo could work as well? do some experimenting, i say!]
2 or 3 frozen spinach rolls [optional]
1 package fresh spinach [i mixed, but you can do whatever you want]
2 eggs
1 200g block of feta cheese, chopped finely.
1/2 tsp chilli powder
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp coriander
a pinch of salt
pepper

Method
Preheat the oven as from the directions on your packet of pasty. Cut the pastry into big enough squares for you to use.

cook the spinach on low heat, with a bit of butter, until the frozen spinach is thawed and separated, and the fresh spinach is wilted. Set aside to cool.

Spinach and feta pastries (2)

Combine the eggs, chilli powder, cumin, coriander, salt and pepper. When the spinach is cooled, add the spinach and lastly the feta.

Spinach and feta pastries (3)

Spoon the mixture in the middle of each pastry square. fold over and seal by pressing a fork down all around the outsides. [it looks like you’re trying to make a cool pattern, but you’re really sealing it. But you can just make everyone think you’re skilled at patterning pastry if you want Smile with tongue out ]

Brush the pastry with egg or milk. Put these in your pre-heated oven until they are golden-brown. Enjoy! 🙂

Spinach and feta pastries (4)

 

and just for fun, I used the remainder of the ingredients and made a GIGANTIC one!
[lasted me two days. true story]

Spinach and feta pastries (1)

My Cheater’s Curry

LOL, I always get mocked for making a curry cause I do it ALLLL the time [only cause its so ridiculously quick, and I wants me food NOW.] So here is my version of a sneaky cheat curry. I have made this so many times in the past few weeks because when I am out of food and can’t be bothered wandering to the supermarket, lentils are my friend! Also, we now have a rice cooker, which is the bestest friend of all [Tory is pretty good competition though.]

I actually made this a week ago, but then I developed a slight obsession with One Direction, which kinda put the rest of my life on hiatus. Don’t judge! My upcoming test and two lab reports snapped me back to reality, so all is well… for now.

Ingredients
Dry lentils [sometimes they come in a handy soup packet, which is what i used this time, but the plain ones will do, just wash them first cause they will be starchy. You can also use canned lentils, they work just as well]
1 tablespoon oil
1 – 2 tsp curry powder [depending on how spicy you want it]
a sprinkle of chilli powder
1/4 tsp tumeric powder
1/2 tsp coriander powder
1/2 tsp cumin powder
salt and pepper to taste.

Method
Rinse the lentils, cover with water and leave on high heat until boiling point.

Cheater Lentil Curry (3)Cheater Lentil Curry (6)

Once they start to boil, turn the heat right down and cover so that it simmers about 5 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking.

Cheater Lentil Curry (8)

Add the oil, chilli, curry, coriander, cumin, and tumeric powders. Stir well.

Cheater Lentil Curry (4)Cheater Lentil Curry (5)

Keep it simmering until the water has been absorbed into the lentils and they are soft enough to break with a fork. [not sure about you, but i like my lentils soft.]
Add more water if you have to and keep it simmering until it’s at a consistency you like. Salt and pepper to taste.

Cheater Lentil Curry (10)Cheater Lentil Curry (11)

Serve with rice. Or if you are fancy like Tory, serve with naan. Or if you are lazy like me, serve with regular bread. 😉

Cheater Lentil Curry (1)

The only thing i have to say is… PLEASE don’t overdose on the curry powder, or chilli powder, or just any of the powders. The last thing anyone wants is to stop themselves enjoying a meal because its too spicy and numbs your tongue.

Enjoy yourself!

Nurul.

Cheat Lentil Tikka Masala

Hey guys,

This recipe is a bit of a cheat, I bought a jar of Tikka Masala sauce and added a couple of my own things but it was yum, simple, cheap and easy, which is the point of this blog so it definitely counts. Although, I’m sure Nurul can do better and I challenge her to do that! Although in hindsight it would have actually been cheaper to try and make it myself but I have NO idea how to make a curry from scratch so spending up to $5 on a jar of curry sauce was a good choice and $5 is still cheap.

As a vegetarian, lentils are a very healthy high source of protein and a great meat alternative. I don’t eat a lot of lentils but I should start eating more.

Ingredients:
1 jar of tikka masala sauce (could also use butter chicken sauce or any other sauce of your choice)
2-3 cloves of garlic, chopped and crushed
1 tin of lentils
Extra chilli if needed
1/4 cup of rice (That’s enough for me, you can make more if you like rice or are cooking for more than one person)
Naan bread from the supermarket or from your local Indian restaurant/take-away shop

Method:

First, boil salted water for rice.

While you’re waiting for your water to boil, open your tin of lentils. Tinned lentils are usually kept in brine, which is a gross brown liquid that I think smells like catfood. To avoid the brine, I always wash my lentils well so put your lentils in a colander and run cold water over them for a couple of minutes.

Add rice to the boiling water and cook til soft.

Chop and crush your garlic. (I really just wanted to show off my new knife, which I got from Countdown supermarket by saving stickers they give you after every $20 purchase). You could probably add diced onion too but I didn’t have one at the time. Like Nurul, every dish I make has a garlic or onion/garlic base, it’s called FLAVOUR. Although, I’m pretty sure, as a meat eater I never used garlic but now I’m unsure where I’d be without it. I use so much I can’t even taste it any more!

Fry the garlic in olive oil but not til it goes brown. Like Nurul, I start everything on high and turn it down when it starts to get hot. Garlic is best cooked on medium heat, it is gross as soon as it goes brown so it’s best to saute it on a low heat to get all the flavour  out.

Add lentils and fry on medium heat for 2-5 minutes. The lentils are already pre-cooked so you just need to heat them up.

Add your sauce, while on high heat then when it starts to boil, turn it to low heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes.

While your sauce is simmering, take your rice off the heat and drain it (if you cooked it using heaps of water like I did).

Also while my sauce was simmering, I went to my local Indian restaurant and got a couple of pieces of garlic naan to go with the curry, naan is always my favourite part of a curry and although my local Indian restaurant (2 minutes walk from my house) makes terrible curry, it makes good naan so that was perfect for this situation.

Plate everything and enjoy!

Tory.

Winter Vegetable Soup

Hey guys,

Winter’s coming, last week we had a “weatherbomb” with wind and rain and general coldness so I felt it was the perfect time to make soup.

This soup is very easy but you may want to freeze some of it coz it makes a LOT of soup, unless you want to eat soup for like 2 weeks straight. I’m not sure if it’s possible to make a smaller batch.

Ingredients:

1 packet King traditional soup mix
9 cups water
Vegetables of your choice, diced into similar sizes (I used 3 potatoes, a quarter of a pumpkin, half an onion, 3 big cloves of garlic, 2 carrots and 4 sticks of celery)
A tin of tomatoes
A few tablespoons of tomato paste
Pepper
Salt
Stock cubes (If you taste the soup after an hour or two and it tastes bland)

Method:

As I said earlier, this recipe is VERY easy, it’s basically just throwing everything into a pot and boiling it for 2 and a half hours, or until your vegetables are cooked and the soup tastes like all the flavours have been incorporated into the soup.

The first step is to chop your vegetables (I don’t have a picture of this, I was too hungry and desperate to make soup fast!). Dice them into bite-sized pieces but all similar sizes so they cook evenly but you boil them for so long they’ll all cook eventually anyway but it’s best to cook them at a size to make them easy to eat in a mouthful with other vegies and liquid (the rest of the soup).

Put the soup mix into a large, large pot.

Add water and bring to the boil on high heat.

Using medium heat, add hard diced vegetables like potatoes, pumpkin, kumara etc, things that take longer to cook than other vegetables. I also added my garlic at this point to start adding flavour to the soup.

Cook those vegetables for 30 minutes before adding softer vegetables like leek, celery, onion, whatever else as well as your tin of tomatoes and tomato paste and salt and pepper.

Stir in the soft vegetables and cover soup for 2 hours, stirring occasionally. Taste occasionally also, if the flavour doesn’t start to develop, add a stock cube or 4 to add flavour.

Using a fork, try one of the hard vegetables to make sure they’re cooked (it would be completely stupid if they weren’t by this point). Try some of the soup liquid also. Add more salt and pepper if it doesn’t taste flavoursome.

Spoon into bowls using a ladle, cut some nice crusty bread and enjoy!

Tory.

 

Fried Noodles [yeah, im making legit mee goreng]

OK I lied, its not THAT legit. It’s more of a cross between packet mee goreng, and real mee goreng
But before I continue, I’M SO SORRY about my unplanned gigantic hiatus… moving was more hectic than I expected, and for the first couple of weeks of Dunedin I lived off takeaways and two minute noodles [like one of those stereotypical poor students. It really does happen, guys.] So anyway, I was hoping to get a baking recipe in when I got back, but that kinda failed. Hopefully I’ll be in a sweet routine once uni starts up again and I can gift you with lots of delish treats 🙂 But in the meantime, hope you like this simple one!

PS: Photos might be a bit strange because I thought I would experiment with my phone this time 😀

Ingredients
half an onion, diced
3-5 cloves of garlic [this time I used garlic paste.. about a tablespoon]
2 cups frozen vegetables [my fav is the asian mix because it has capsicum in it!]
Flavouring sauce, stock, or some kind of chilli-based stir fry paste… [that sounds a bit confusing, but this recipe is so versatile that you can really use anything you want to flavour it. I used a packet Nasi Goreng paste, which is actually used for Fried Rice, but I thought i’d try it with noodles just for funsies.]
Packet noodles of any kind [most supermarkets stock packets of noodles that you can just chuck in boiling water for a bit and use]
Salt and pepper to taste

MeeGoreng (1) MeeGoreng (3)

Method

Fry onion and garlic in a little oil until fragrant.

MeeGoreng (2)

Add paste or chosen flavouring and fry for a couple of minutes before adding the frozen vegetables.

MeeGoreng (4) MeeGoreng (5)

Stir the mixture until vegetables have been defrosted.

MeeGoreng (6)

Cook the noodles separately according to the instructions on the packet. Drain and add to the mixture.

MeeGoreng (7)

Mix well, add salt and pepper to taste. Serve!

MeeGoreng (8) MeeGoreng (9)

You can also meat to this recipe if you like, as long as its pre-cooked. As I said, very versatile. And I will probably show you fried rice sometime, but its basically the same method, but swapping the noodles for cooked rice. We will take pictures of that sometime 🙂

Nurul.

Home Made Pesto Pasta With Roasted Tomatoes

Hi guys,

Pesto is an amazing, versatile sauce for any meal. With this batch of pesto, I made pesto pasta (this recipe), pesto mashed potato and pesto on toast with cheese.

Lucky for you, you don’t have to buy pesto, it’s extremely easy to make and today, I’m going to teach you how from this Jamie Oliver recipe.

Ingredients:
Basil
Garlic (Jamie suggests half a clove but as you’ll see, I used three haha but then it was a bit too overpowering so stick to just one clove)
Pine nuts
Parmesan cheese
Olive oil
Lemon juice
Salt

Pasta
Tomatoes

Method:

Put garlic into a food processor.

Blend. Add basil and salt.

Blend. Lightly toast pine nuts in a pan.

Add pine nuts to blender. Blend.

Side note: This is where my camera went out of focus for a few pictures so a few steps are missing photographically but it’s not hard, just throw everything into the blender.

Add some olive oil and a squeeze of lemon juice.

Blend. Add parmesan.

Add more olive oil until the consistency is correct. How do you know when the consistency is correct? You can’t see individual bits like you can in the above picture but it’s also not very runny. Also, keep tasting. If it needs more of anything to make it taste the way you like pesto, add more oil or lemon or even basil.

Chop tomatoes. Put them on a baking tray and into the oven at 200 degrees until roasted.

Boil pasta in salted water til cooked.

Toss a few teaspoons of pesto through the pasta. You don’t need much, it’s strong stuff. Add the roasted tomatoes on top.

Enjoy!

Tory.