Showing posts with label Vegetables. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Vegetables. Show all posts

Wednesday, 29 July 2015

Stellar Hard Anodised Bakeware Review - Tangy Tomato and Feta Stuffed Peppers

As we all know good bakeware is essential for good results when cooking.  Stellar’s Professional Hard Anodised Bakeware has even heat distribution with no rusting or flaking and no warping in the oven.  It's also easy to clean and free from PTFE and PFOA.

Having used my roasting tray a good few times now I have to say it's great and an affordable price too selling at just £20.00

As you can see this 32x22x5cm roasting tray is a good size and perfect for roasting vegetables and is available in different sizes.  It's really light in weight and the handles make it really easy to remove from the oven.

Made from an aluminium alloy which provides superior thermal conductivity for even heat distribution, essential for the baking of successful breads and cakes.  The pans are electrochemically-hardened (hard anodised) for unbeatable durability.

Friday, 3 July 2015

Super Quick and Healthy Vegetable Sauce for Pasta

Some people may think that making your own sauce is just too much trouble but it really isn't and vegetable pasta sauce is a great way to get your family eating their 5-a-day too.
Shop bought pasta sauces often contain a lot of sugar and salt so this is also a great way to eat more healthily. 


My vegetable pasta sauce can be made in pretty much the time it takes to boil a saucepan of water and cook the pasta!  

To make it in super quick time, I used the Zyliss® Easy Pull manual food processor which allows you to chop food with ease and consistency.  Chopping, mixing, blending and pureeing easier and is convenient too with no need or fuss for electric tools and gadgets. 

Friday, 1 May 2015

How to Dehydrate Tomatoes using a Dehydrator

Now I've always been curious about dehydrators, I mean do they actually work, do they take forever and ever, to do their stuff,  and more to the point why do I, or anyone else for that matter, actually want or indeed need one?






















Tomatoes; oh I do love tomatoes!  With a dehydrator you can preserve your tomatoes so they're ready to add to recipes as and when you want them.  As long as your jars are sterilised then I'm sure they can be stored in small kilner jars in olive oil.  I must say I was really impressed that the tomatoes kept their colour when dehydrated, in fact they turned to an even deeper red; no PhotoShop doctoring used in any of these photos apart to resize.  So yes dehydrators do work!

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Get ready for your Summer Holiday - Let's Cook Paella

Oh yes, it's that time of year when we all soon start to think about our summer holiday.  Well okay, the weather isn't even spring like at the moment here in the UK, but I don't care!  I'm getting into the holiday spirit a bit early as I'm going to make the most of this years holiday abroad since we didn't have one last year.





















I do love Spanish food and when in Spain I can't resist Paella. 

Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Carrot and Ginger Soup - Made using the Optimum 9200 Power Blender

When reading the Optimum 9200 Next Generation Power Blender could make hot soup by friction heat alone (caused by the fast spinning blades) my thinking was it would be lukewarm at best.  As it turns out I was wrong. 























Running on high speed the blades rotate 44,000 rpm which creates friction heat and the Optimum 9200 will raise the contents of the jug by 4 degrees every 30 seconds.  In order to make hot soup it has to be running for approximately 5 to 6 minutes depending on the amount of vegetables in the jug.   






































Can you see the steam coming from my soup?!

Check out my review of the Optimum 9200 Power Blender - it is a seriously amazing blender.

Print Recipe

https://sites.google.com/a/aglugofoil.com/a-glug-of-oil/home/carrot-and-ginger-soup





To make 2-3 bowls of soup you will need:
4 large carrots - peeled and cut into chunks
1 drop of Holy Lama ginger extract spice drops
100ml of vegetable stock made from half of a Knorr stock cube dissolved in boiling water (you can use chicken stock if you're not vegetarian)
a small pinch of sea salt and black pepper to taste

How to do it:
Throw the peeled and chopped carrots along with just 1 drop of Holy Lama Ginger Extract Spice Drops into your Optimum 9200 Power Blender and blend on high for about 30 seconds - you will need to use the tamper tool just so they don't get stuck.  Now add about 50ml of the hot stock.  Remove the tamper tool and pop on the lid.  Leave to blend for 5 to 6 minutes. 
Check the consistency and add more of the stock if you think it needs it.  Your soup should be nice and hot and ready to serve.  Have a taste and adjust the seasoning.

Take a look at the Official Optimum Next Generation 9200 website to see what else these power blenders can do.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.  Buying through my affiliate link will not cost you anything.  I will earn a small percentage from the sale.  I only endorse products that I use and love!

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Vegetable Spaghetti - Microplane Spiral Cutter Review

Let me tell you about this new Microplane Spiral Cutter - it's easy to use and easy to clean too. This spiral cutter allows you to make spiral cuts out of fresh vegetables. So yes, you can now make your veg look all  posh!






















Courgettes, carrots, cucumber all work well and also I'm thinking beetroot would be good too although I haven't tried it - could be a bit messy?!   To use the spiral cutter, just hold what ever it is you're cutting at a slight angle making sure the whole side of the vegetable touches the blade and twist. 



























The two different size barrels are for different size veg - the larger one being perfect for cucumber and the smaller for carrots.

The blades are really sharp and slice through vegetables with ease.  I have to say I couldn't get the spirals quite as long as I'd have perhaps liked without some breaking - probably just me not getting the hang of it.  Don't get me wrong the spirals still looked good and it's great for stir-fries, creating garnishes or to make a more interesting side salad a bit different from the norm.    

The soft-grip exterior makes it comfortable to hold and easy to use and fits easily in your hand and it's also dishwasher safe.


With a RRP of £9.95 I think this is a reasonable price.
To buy a Microplane Spiral Cutter (available in Green or Black) please pop over to Steamer Trading

Many thanks to Steamer and PBM Marketing for sending me one to review.

Disclaimer:  All thoughts and opinions are my own.  I was not required to write a positive review. 

Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Port and Redcurrant Glazed Roasted Root Vegetables - SCANPAN Review

My Christmassy Roasted Root Vegetables glazed with Port and Redcurrant Jelly are, in a word, delicious. Perfect for Christmas dinner or of course the usual Sunday roast.  So very easy to do too, and as long as you have a good non-stick pan you can't go wrong.

Usually I'd recommend you use a disposable foil tray since the honey can be hard to clean from a regular non-stick roasting tin.  But having been sent this beautiful Scanpan I put it to the test - would it be easy to clean afterwards?  Answer is yep it was a doddle.
Scanpan not only looks good but performs really well both in the oven and on the hob too.
 
























Scanpan products are made in Denmark and the Scanpan roasting pan has a non-stick ceramic titanium coating and is metal utensil and dishwasher safe.  This roasting pan is multi-purpose too since it has a base like a frying pan and it can also be used in the oven, under the grill and on the stove top.

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Spicy Red Pepper and Sweet Paprika Soup

Rich, vibrant, thick and creamy warming soup is perfect for these cold 'almost winter' like days.  Homemade soup is really easy to make and the best thing is you can make up your own flavours combinations.  With good quality ingredients soup takes no time at all to make especially in a soup maker. 


Make the best of those bargains you see in your local supermarket or better still your local farm shop or greengrocer. Whether you use a soup maker to do the work for you, or manually cook your soup and then blend with a stick (immersion) blender is up to you.  I used a soup maker by Judge Cookware and the result was excellent.  Soup can be frozen too so you always have some ready for for lunch on those lazy do nothing days.

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Chicken with Bacon Saffron Tomato and Potato - One Pot Meal

 Readers of this blog would have seen my recent review of the beautiful cook book 'Café Kitchen' by Shelagh Ryan.  As soon as I opened the book I knew I had to make this dish.  This is a lovely recipe full of flavour and easy since it's all cooked in one pot.  Suitable for everyday eating but I say would go down a treat at a dinner party too.


As I've already said Café Kitchen is a truly lovely cook book.  I did slightly titivated the original recipe as the book doesn't mention whether or not the potatoes should be precooked or not.  I decided they wouldn't be cooked through simply by adding them in the last 20 minutes of cooking as the book suggests and so I par boiled mine first. I also used one tin less of tomatoes and less chicken stock and wine.  I still had plenty of liquid so I've decided that's the way to go but of course it's just down to personal preference.  The recipe says it serves 8-12 people using eight to twelve chicken thighs - we are greedy so I used 9 to serve two people.

Saturday, 2 August 2014

Pan-fried Pork Steak Feast - Entertaining Made Easy

An easy dinner which not only looks good but is also quite simple to make.  Lovely thick and juicy pork steaks smeared with good quality olive oil, seasoned with sea salt and black pepper and pan-fried. 
Turn this meal into a feast by adding a couple of side dishes as shown - one of which includes potatoes but if you still think you need to add more, then of course fresh crusty buttered bread is always a good thing.


 Entertaining made easy:
Since the vegetable dish can be prepared in advance (just don't add the feta until your ready to pop into the oven) this makes entertaining family and friends easy.  The corn can be prepared too to the stage where that has to go into the oven.  All that's left to do then is pan-fry your pork steaks at the last minute.

Sunday, 27 July 2014

Tuscan inspired Chicken Dish - Easy to Make Recipe

Just recently Filippo Berio launched their premium Gran Cru range of Extra Virgin Olive Oils and having been sent them to try, I couldn't wait to use them.  For this dish I used Gran Cru Toscano - a chicken dish which just seemed to happen, purely because I happened to have some lovely peppers and tomatoes in the fridge but also because I was feeling inspired by the wonderful oils I'd been sent. 
Nothing but good fresh ingredients, it's easy to make and ended up as something quite wonderful. 
Tuscany is somewhere I've always really fancied visiting - in fact Italy in general really interests me and the food always looks so, so good. 

  

Just for the record, I'm not claiming this to be authentic Tuscan food, just Tuscan flavours and something I made up as I went along.

 About Filippo Berio:
 Filippo Berio, of Lucca, Tuscany, has been dedicated to Olive Oil since the 1800s and selects the very best and most distinctive regional Italian oils. Filippo Berio is therefore a true expert, with oils ranging from their standard Extra Virgin Olive Oil to this super premium Gran Cru range. 


























The Gran Cru range is a selection of three regional Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oils. Each of the three Gran Cru oils - Dauno, Monti Iblei and Toscano have their own unique characteristics.

Filippo Berio Gran Cru Toscano:  Produced in Tuscany from Frantoio, Pendolino and Leccino olives, this delicate green Extra Virgin olive oil has a strong aroma and a well-balanced flavour; a ripe, sweet and fruity taste with a peppery finish. The mainstay of many traditional Tuscan recipes, it is excellent with fish, soups, vegetables and fresh salads.  Perfect for pasta, pulses and barbecued meat too.

Filippo Berio Gran Cru Monti Iblei:  Produced in the Monti Iblei area of Sicily and made using Tonda Iblea olives, this Extra Virgin olive oil has an intense aroma, reminiscent of tomato leaves. It has a full-bodied, intense flavour and is excellent with salads, fish and shellfish.  Perfect with white meat and boiled or grilled vegetables, it is also spectacular on fresh Pecorino and salted Ricotta.    

Filippo Berio Gran Cru Dauno:  Produced in Puglia, in the heel of Italy, and made exclusively from Ogliarola and Coratina olives, this golden green coloured Extra Virgin olive oil is tangy, aromatic and intense. It is best suited to enhancing strong flavours such as game, bitter herbs, artichokes and turnips. It also goes well with vegetable soups and barbecued meat and fish.

Sunday, 6 July 2014

Butternut Squash Chickpea and Spinach Curry

Looking at the ingredients list at first glance this may seem like a bit too much faffing about for your liking, but let me tell you the result is so worth it.
Panch Phoran is a bland of a few simple spices and doesn't require grinding - the spices are kept whole so it can be made very easily in just one minute.  Fantastic to keep in the store cupboard and will make a huge difference to any Indian style curry you make. You can see in a previous post of mine just how easy it is to make Panch Phoran - also known as Indian Five-spice.


The butternut adds lovely vibrant colour and a slightly sweet taste to this richly spiced curry.  Be assured that the word 'spiced' does not actually mean this is extra hot (as in spicy) this is just a lovely warming delicious and very tasty curry.  That said if you do want it hotter just add more chilli.

Saturday, 28 June 2014

Chicken with Chorizo and Chilli - Ragu Pour Over Sauce

As someone that really enjoys cooking I don't often use ready made sauces.  That said, of course I do if I'm in a hurry or on a day when I simply can't be bothered.  Ragu have recently launched a new range of pour over sauces and I was sent some to try.  The sauces can be used with meat of your choice, chicken, fish or of course over pasta. 


There are four sauces in the range (although only three are shown in the lovely hamper I was sent) because one pot had sadly met with a bit of an accident in the post!



Each pot serves 2-3 and comes in a microwavable 370g pot and is ready to serve in just 2 minutes. With a RRP of £1.69 a pot I think that's excellent value - the range consists of:
Arrabbiata, Primavera, Sun-dried Tomato and Black Olive and Chorizo and Chilli.

Wednesday, 4 June 2014

Pork and Pepper Smoked Paprika Tray Bake

Tray bakes are so very simple to make and a great way to feed a crowd.  There's no real recipe since you can add whatever takes your fancy, although of course I'll tell you how I made this.  
Peppers, oh we love peppers and of course a tray bake is a brilliant way to get your 5 a day too.  You can add courgettes or aubergine and you can use chicken if you want to. 


 If you are vegetarian just leave the meat out altogether.
  Armed with stuff I already had in the fridge and a nice tray of pork steaks a tray bake came to mind.
Now you will of course need a nice big non-stick roasting tray or dish.  
    Having fallen in love with my James Martin Roasting Tin from his new Barkers Dozen collection by Stellar Cookware this tray bake was waiting to be made.  You can see my review here.
 As I said this is very easy to make, just pile all your nicely seasoned vegetables and pork or chicken into your roasting tin and cook.

 
 Print Recipe
https://sites.google.com/a/aglugofoil.com/a-glug-of-oil/home/pork-and-pepper-smoked-paprika-tray-bake

 To serve 2 greedy people or 4 (not so greedy as we are) you will need:
olive oil
sea salt and black pepper
a good amount of smoked paprika
4 nice lean pork loin steaks although a bit of fat round the edge is good
4 medium potatoes washed and sliced to about 1cm - don't bother peeling them (Maris Piper since they're great for roasting)
1 yellow, 1 red and 1 green bell pepper - cut into big bite sized pieces
1 large red onion - cut into wedges
2 fat cloves of garlic - flattened with the bake of a knife
a good pinch of dried oregano
1 lemon - sliced
a few sprigs of thyme 
flat leaf parsley - chopped

How to do it:
Preheat your oven to 200C/400F or Gas 6
Throw your sliced potatoes into your roasting tin and drizzle with olive oil, season well with sea salt and black pepper along with a good sprinkling of smoked paprika.
Mix with your hands to coat the potatoes well and pop into the heated oven for about 20 minutes.  Remove from the oven and turn them over.  Add the peppers, onion and garlic and season with sea salt and oregano.  Rub each pork loin with olive oil and a good helping of smoked paprika and coat well.
Add the pork to the tin (on top of the peppers) along with the lemon slices and the sprigs of thyme.  
Pop back into the oven uncovered and leave to cook for about 20 minutes before jiggling everything about a bit.  Return to the oven to cook for a further I dunno, 25-30 minutes.  
I won't give an actual time as all ovens are different and it depends on the thickness of your pork and potatoes.  All I know is you need to make sure the potatoes are cooked though as well as the pork.  Sprinkle over the parsley and serve straight away.  

   
For more information on James Marin's Bakers Dozen and other lovely products,
 pop over to Stellar Cookware.

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Quinoa with Roasted Butternut - Healthy Summer Eating

With all this lovely hot weather we're having at the moment (which I've no doubt will end very soon since I've mentioned it) it is most definitely BBQ weather.
As a change and feeling in a healthy eating kinda mood, I felt the need to cook quinoa.  Quinoa (pronounced keen-wah) is marvelous stuff and although a little on the weird looking side, it is actually rather nice to eat and is good for you too.  That said, of course it does need some love to make it nice as alone it can be a bit tasteless.  But if you add a glug of oil (ha-ha) and some roasted veg along with a dollop of sun-dried tomato paste and it turns into a lovely thing indeed.

 
Now I have to admit to adding a little crumbled feta after this picture was taken but since I'm trying to come across all healthy and that - just don't tell anyone!

Monday, 19 May 2014

Mediterranean Vegetable Moussaka - National Vegetarian Week

As we all know the popular Greek dish moussaka traditionally uses lamb, but as it's the start of National Vegetarian week (19th May to 25th) I thought I'd give moussaka a go using just vegetables.  Let me tell you it was truly delicious and every bit as tasty.
To make slicing, peeling, chopping and measuring easier OXO Good Grips kindly sent me a lovely range of tools for the job.

  
First up this rather useful hand-held mandolin slicer enabled slicing potatoes into even slices a doddle. 


An aubergine was sliced and ready to cook in next to no time:


 The hand-head mandolin is easily adjusted by a simple slider on the side so you have a choice of three different thicknesses from approx 1mm to 5mm.  One thing I will say is personally I would have liked the slicer to have one more thicker setting than the max it has of about 5mm.  After use the blade is set to the lock position making it safe to store with the guard in place.

Next up, the Herb Mincer - a fantastic little gadget.  The top opens up to allow easy cleaning and it can go into the dishwasher if you wish.  Safe to use since your fingers aren't near the blade when using.  It chops herbs in seconds just by rolling back and forth and comes with a blade guard for safety when storing. 


 Scrubbing vegetables is once again made easy with this comfortable to hold Vegetable Brush - I didn't need to scrub my potatoes as I was about to peel them for this recipe.


 The OXO Good Grips Y-Peeler is the very fellow for this - nice thin slices means there's no wasted veg:


  How many times have you gone to measure out a teaspoons of spice from a jar to find your measuring spoon will not fit the jar?   These slim measuring spoons are brilliant and the teaspoon easily fits into these slim spice jars that many of us I'm sure have in our cupboards.


All in all each of these products are of good quality as always from OXO Good Grips and you can find out more over at the OXO Good Grips website.  All products shown above are dishwasher safe.

  Now with my recipe!

Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Mexican-Style Coleslaw - Easy Recipe

Add a little spice to your life with this Mexican-style coleslaw!  Of course you can make it more or less spicy to suit your taste and it's ideal to serve at a BBQ or just as a change instead of regular coleslaw. 


Of course if you happen to have too much time on your hands you can make your own mayonnaise but I'm afraid I don't, and in any case I say good old Hellmann's mayo is the way to go.

Sunday, 9 March 2014

Beef with Tomatoes and Sweet Paprika - Slow Cooker Recipe

My cute and dinky slow cooker from Judge Cookware is just 1.5 litres and I've found this size to be perfect as it stops me cooking far too much for two people.  I do tend to get a bit excitable and cook too much food.  You can read my review on the Judge mini slow cooker and find more of my slow cooker recipes here.

About this recipe for Beef and Tomatoes - I meant to use a red peppers, but for some reason I seem to have got side tracked and found myself chopping a carrot instead!  Anyway, I used the carrot and left out the red pepper (since the two together is a bit odd, I think) and it was fine, but when I make it again I will use a bell pepper instead.


Whatever you do please try to use sweet paprika as it will give a far nicer taste.
Of course if you wanted to you could put this in a casserole and pop it into the oven at say 180C/360F for about 3 hours, or until the meat in nice and tender.  The only problem is with the oven it does tend to need checking on more often as you will most probably find you need to turn the oven down at some point.

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

Simple Recipe Ideas - using Maille Vinegar Mustard and Oil

Maille are are famous for their outstanding range of mustard's, vinegars, oils, dressings and pickles and they recently sent me a few products to try.  
I'm already a huge fan of Maille Dijon Mustard, Wholegrain Mustard with White Wine and Black Olives and also their Balsamic Vinegar. 


I must admit I'd never tried Maille Tomate Séchée - Sherry Vinegar with Sun-dried Tomatoes or Maille Ail et Citron - Mustard with White Wine, Lemon and Garlic and I couldn't wait to give them a go.

So what to make using these lovelies from Maille?  
  I marinated chicken pieces in Maille Ail et Citron Mustard (mixed with a tiny splash of olive oil) for about 30 minutes before threading onto skewers along with red and yellow bell peppers.  I then char-grilled them on a very hot griddle pan - Simple, and very tasty.


Of course I also wanted to try the Tomate Séchée.  I rather fancied some sauteed peppers, onions and tomatoes so I added a splash of the tomato vinegar during cooking which really gave the pepper mixture a lovely slightly tangy taste.  In a separate pan I added a little olive oil and over a high heat, stir-fried some cubes of ciabatta bread to make croutons which I then tossed through the cooked peppers, onions and tomatoes.  The whole thing took under 15 minutes, if that.


  Maille Velours de Balsamique - This Balsamic Vinegar Glaze is perfect for making a balsamic dipping oil for bread.  Just mix together 1 part Maille Balsamic Glaze with 2 parts of extra virgin olive oil and serve with chunks of ciabatta along with a few olives.  A perfect pre-dinner appetizer. 

  
Maille products are easily available in the UK and they’ve even opened their own Mustard Boutique which can be found in London’s Piccadilly Arcade.  Or you can pop over Maille and order online.

This post featuring Maille products was commissioned by Maille for a fee.  I was sent the Maille products mentioned to try.  All thoughts and opinions are my own and I was not required to write a positive review.

Monday, 10 February 2014

How to Make the Perfect Sunday Roast

No matter how busy or hectic your week might be, the perfect Sunday roast is a highlight to look forward to, and one with a lengthy tradition. Whether you go with a juicy, succulent joint of beef, or maybe a roast chicken with all the trimmings like roast potatoes, there are some things that just can’t be messed around with.


To make sure you create the Sunday roast you've been dreaming of all week, here are a few things to think about:

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