Friday, 28 September 2012

Simple meals...

Pasta with broad beans...
More on the theme of simplicity!  A couple of days ago I made a really simple but delicious supper which still makes my mouth water just thinking about it!  Not only was it very tasty but I love the fact that it was made out of only a handful of ingredients and in no time at all.  Pasta with broad beans, garlic, olive oil, mint, a bit of salt & black pepper and a squeeze of lemon juice - job done!

And this morning I prepared an equally simple dish for our lunch: mushroom soup!  All it needed was mushrooms (really? :-)), a couple of leeks, some garlic, thyme and vegetable stock (I did use a cube for this).  Again, really straightforward and also very cheap to make.  You can add cream to it but it really isn't necessary and if really hungry, a slice of bread on the side might go down a treat.

It just goes to show how easy it is to make a satisfying meal that doesn't need to cost the earth (quite literally).

Mini peppers...
Before I forget...I harvested some of our homegrown mini peppers again the other day to add to a roast vegetable dish.  How cute are they?  I love the different colours and shapes!  The colours are obviously due to the different stages of ripeness but funny how the orange ones are quite a lot longer/bigger.  I have kept some of the seeds to grow more next year although I am tempted to try the "normal" size variety.  They may have to be grown outside of the house though as their plants are bound to be huge.

This afternoon I will go and collect the last of the tomatoes from the garden.  They are bound to be green ones but I have decided that they need to be harvested before it gets colder.  I will turn them either into green tomato chutney or salsa (the latter can be frozen).  I'd hate to see them go to waste, so that seems to be the best option.
Pasta with Broad Beans
400g broad beans
250g pasta
200g ricotta cheese (optional)
olive oil
mint, lemon juice (optional)
Drop 400g of broad beans into boiling, lightly salted water and cook for 7-8 minutes, depending on their size, then drain them in a colander. Cook 250g of orecchiette or other medium-sized pasta in deep, generously salted boiling water until al dente, about 9 minutes. While the pasta is cooking, squeeze the broad beans out of their grey skins. Discard the skins and toss the broad beans in a splash of olive oil.
Drain the pasta, tip into a large bowl, then add the broad beans. Stir a couple of tablespoons of olive oil into 200g of ricotta – there may be a little curdling – and season with black pepper. Drop large spoonfuls of the ricotta on top of the pasta and serve.

Nigel Slater's recipe can be found here:

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