Last Sunday saw me prepare another one of my veggie feasts for my dearest and nearest- hunting down ingredients, prepping all components and then enjoying the fruits of my labour with my guests over a bottle wine after all one of my favourite ways to end the weekend. Once again Pinterest (following my pinning escapdes here
) served as main source of inspiration, providing me with more twists on my favourite vegetables and helping me ever more fine tune my signature dishes! Hope you enjoy the below and give the recipes a try yourself. Everything was super easy to prepare, cheap to buy and boy was it a feast for the eyes AND tastebuds!
ROAST BUTTERNUT SQUASH AND RED ONION WITH TAHINI AND Z'ATAR
Another Ottolenghi recipe (surprise, surprise), this was the first time I'd ever cooked with butternut squash. A little intimidated at first by it's size and struggling to get my knife into it at first, it was actually surprisingly easy to prep and cook. That goes for the whole dish in fact, a beautiful marriage of roasted chunks of red onion and squash, served with lashings of a super easy but tasty tahini and lemon sauce. Finished off with my new favourite spice mix, z'atar, a must have for all middle eastern cooking, and a sprinkle of fresh parsley, this is fresh, full of flavour and a beautiful addition to any spread. So few steps are involved yet the vegetables are transformed into something truly special. This won't be my last time cooking butternut squash and certainly not the last time making this dish.
Get the recipe here
SWEET POTATO NACHOS WITH BLACK BEANS AND SMOKED CHEDDAR
On my continuing quest for the perfect sweet potato recipe, this week a not so healthy but incredibly moorish Mexican twist on the humble sweet p. Replacing the classic nacho chip here, they are roasted, topped with smoked cheddar (and go for smoked rather than normal, it really adds another dimension) and black beans, then put under the grill until everything has melted into gooey goodness together. This is simply put slightly stodgy, comforting soul food that will rescue any cold winter evening without a fail. Best served with a fresh sour cream and chive dip. Comforting and cheesy- what more do you want!
Get the recipe here
COURGETTE SHOESTRING FRIES
I absolutely fell in love with courgette fries a few years back on a visit to Polpo
, an iconic Venetian tapas restaurant in London, and had been on the search for a recipe to recreate them at home ever since. They were thin, crispy and a hell of a lot more flavourful than any of their potato counterparts. I tried to bake them, coat them in breadcrumbs and cut them into wedges- nothing worked, the results alway quite soggy, greasy and entirely underwhelming taste-wise. I then came across this recipe and had to bite the bullet. Yes, deep frying ANYTHING isn't great but OH MY GOD is it worth it here. Cut into thin strips, discarding the watery courgette flesh, and coated simply in milk and flour, these beauties, after a few minutes in a hot pan of vegetable oil, are as close to heaven in a fry as you will get. My tip: leave them to dry for a few minutes on a bit of kitchen towel to soak up excess grease (and to make you feel a little less guilty), sprinkle on a bit of salt and enjoy. Thank me later because you will make them again and again and again and heck they have less calories than a potato and are somehow related to courgetti so it's totally ok!
Get the recipe here
BAKED AUBERGINE WITH GOATS CHEESE AND CHERRY TOMATOES
Though not my favourite aubergine dish of all time (that honour goes without a doubt to this recent Ottolenghi creation
), this is an impressive looking and easy to prep dish that combines the earthy flavour of the roast aubergine with the zing of goats cheese and sweetness of the little cherry tomatoes roasted on top. With only three ingredients, plus some honey drizzled over the top, this makes a super side dish even for meaty suppers and is satisfying enough to be served as a main with a little side salad or couscous.