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Recipes by Katie Quinn Davies August 11, 2012
Couscous with harissa chicken, chargrilled zucchini and crunchy nutty salad, yoghurt drizzle cream
Serves 6 This is a fantastic lunch for a weekend get-together with friends. It’s incredibly flavoursome and packed full of amazing crunchy textures, the inclusion of low GI chickpeas means you should feel pretty satisfied for the rest of the day. If you prepare the chicken thighs the night before, all you have to do on the day of serving is to chargrill the zucchini and prepare the salad, then cook the chicken ~ which normally take me about 15-20 minutes. If you can’t prepare the night before, just marinade the chicken in the fridge for 2-3 hours on the day instead. Feel free to serve the chicken thighs whole and arrange them on a serving platter (or old wooden board lined with some crumpled up baking paper to catch any juices) with a scattering of extra mint leaves and a lemon wedge or two. Obviously too, you can BBQ the chicken if you like and if you want a vegetarian option, just leave out the chicken altogether! INGREDIENTS
8-10 free-range skinless chicken thighs, excess fat removed for the marinade: 4 tablespoons EVOO Juice and zest 1 large lemon K teaspoon ground coriander N teaspoon ground ginger K teaspoon ground cumin 1 teaspoon harissa paste 2 tablespoons tomato paste 3 garlic cloves, very finely minced for the salad: 1 teaspoon ground cumin 2 x 400g tin chickpeas, drained K cup pumpkin seeds K cup pine nuts K cup smoked almonds, chopped fine-medium 2 zucchini, sliced very finely (0.75mm) on a mandolin 6 spring onions (scallions) finely sliced (including some green parts) Handful fresh flat-leaf parsley; rocket and mint, finely chopped Sea salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper extras: 2 cups couscous 3 lemons 3 tablespoons natural yoghurt EVOO and Olive oil for cooking
(Couscous with harissa chicken, chargrilled zucchini and crunchy nutty salad, yoghurt drizzle cream )
METHOD To make the marinade: add all ingredients into a mixing bowl and whisk well to combine, season with a good pinch of crushed sea salt flakes and a generous amount of freshly ground black pepper. Add the trimmed chicken thighs coating thoroughly in the liquid (I use small latex gloves for this part as the harissa can stain your fingers). Cover bowl with cling wrap and chill in the fridge overnight. Into a large frying pan add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and 1 teaspoon ground cumin, stir together and warm over high heat. Add the drained chickpeas and coat in the flavoured oil. Turn the heat down to medium and cook for 1-2 minutes then add the pumpkin seeds and pine nuts, season with freshly ground black pepper and a pinch of salt, continue to fry ingredients for a further 3-4 minutes until everything is golden and slightly crisp, toss often to ensure everything gets evenly toasted. Turn off heat and allow to cool. While nuts are cooling, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil into a large mixing bowl along with a good pinch of crushed sea salt flakes and a seasoning of freshly ground black pepper. Add the sliced zucchini strips and using clean hands, very carefully coat the veg in the oil. Warm a griddle pan over high heat and when almost smoking, fry the zucchini strips in batches until chargrilled on both sides. Drain and allow to rest on sheets of paper towel. When cool, stack the strips on top of each other, cut into long skinny strips and then the opposite way into lots of small pieces. Using the same griddle pan fry the marinaded chicken thighs until chargrilled and cooked through. When they are half hay through cooking, squeeze the juice of 1 lemon over the meat ~ this will add an extra glossy, golden colour to the meat. Repeat with a second lemon towards the end of the cooking time. Remove chicken from pan, allow to rest for 5-6 minutes, then slice into 1cm strips. To cook the couscous, place into a bowl and cover with 2 cups boiling water. Allow to stand for 5 minutes before fluffing up with a fork and drizzling with a 1 teaspoon EVOO. To make the yoghurt drizzle; simply combine yoghurt with 1 tablespoon EVOO and a small squeeze of lemon juice. To assemble the dish: combine couscous, cooled nut/seed mix, zucchini, spring onion and chopped herbs, mix thoroughly using a large spoon then drizzle with the juice of 1 lemon and 1 tablespoon EVOO. Combine again then season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Transfer to individual plates and serve with the chopped chicken scattered over and the yoghurt on the side.
Coconut chicken pitas with mung beans,
heirloom tomato salsa, lime coconut dressing
A great weekday lunch or casual weekend brunch/lunch idea. The chicken works best is you marinade it overnight, alternatively if you want to make this a dinner option, quickly marinade the meat in the morning before work (takes less than 5 mines) and chill in the fridge while you’re at work, then you can take leftovers in tupperware containers for lunch the following day. I’ve added just 1/2 teaspoon of hot green habanero sauce, but this is up to you, up it or lower it depending on your personal taste preference. It’s a great summery dish which would also make for a wonderful weekend lunch for mates served alongside some chilled beer or margaritas. INGREDIENTS
8 free-range skinless chicken thighs, excess fat removed for the marinade: 4 tablespoons EVOO Zest of 1 and juice of 3 limes K cup of coconut cream 1 green chilli de-seeded & very finely diced Small handful of fresh coriander, finely chopped Leaves from 4 stems of fresh mint, finely chopped K teaspoon of hot green habanero sauce for the salsa: Light olive oil spray 1 cup mung beans Juice of 1 lime 1 teaspoon dark agave nectar 1 Lebanese cucumber 1 long green pepper, seeds and white pith removed 1 punnet (1 large handful), baby heirloom tomatoes, halved or quartered 2 spring onions (scallions), finely sliced including part of the green tops K green chilli, seeds removed very finely diced for the dressing: 2 tablespoons of coconut cream Juice of 1 lime 2 tablespoons light sour cream Sea salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper extras: 2 limes for cooking with the chicken Green chilli, seeds removed very finely diced Olive oil for cooking
(Coconut chicken pitas with mung beans, cucumber & baby heirloom tomato salsa, lime coconut dressing)
METHOD To marinade the chicken, add all ingredients into a mixing bowl and combine thoroughly, add the trimmed chicken, coat well, cover bowl with cling wrap and chill in fridge over night or for at least 2 hours. Spray a non-stick frying pan with a little olive oil, warm gently over medium heat then add the mung beans. Fry gently for 1 to 2 minutes seasoning with a little salt and pepper. Then add the lime juice and agave nectar and carefully toss/stir everything together. Continue to fry over a medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes, until the beans are crispy and golden. Allow beans to cool on kitchen paper before adding to a mixing bowl then set aside. To prepare the cucumber cut off the two ends and slice length ways down the middle. Using a teaspoon (or as I find my half teaspoon cooking measure very useful) scrape down the centre of each half to remove the seeds, discarding as you go. Cut each half again into long thin strips then turn the opposite way and dice into small cubes. Repeat the process with the long green pepper ~ cut off the stem, slice down the centre, remove white pith, slice both halves into long thin strips, then in turn into small cubes. Add the cucumber and green pepper cubes into the bowl with the mung beans, followed by the baby heirloom tomatoes, spring onions and finely diced green chilli. Stir all together to combine, season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. To make the dressing; add all ingredients together in a screw top jar and shake to combine. To cook the chicken warm a griddle pan over high heat until almost smoking, fry the marinaded chicken thighs until chargrilled and cooked through. When they are half hay through cooking, squeeze the juice of 1 lime over the meat ~ this will add extra flavour and a glossy, golden colour to the meat. Repeat with a second lime towards the end of the cooking time. Remove chicken from pan, allow to rest for 5-6 minutes, then cut into bite-sized pieces. Serve the chicken in wholemeal pita pockets with some extra finely sliced green chilli (optional) or in wrap bread along with the salsa and creamy dressing. To use this as a work lunch option, store the dressing in a small jar, salsa and chicken combined in a box and assemble at lunchtime (to avoid sogginess!).
Puy lentil & split green pea salad with balsamic bacon egg and pumpkin seeds, b al s a m i c d res s i n g
Serves 6 Irish breakfast in a salad ~ who would have imagined! Ok, not quite, but this was ‘sort of’ my inspiration for this recipe. I started using green and yellow split peas in salads recently as I love, if anything, the colour they offer. Split green peas were the basis for this salad and it got me thinking; “What’s better with peas other than ham or bacon!?” Then I thought, “bacon and eggs! And peas, and fried tomatoes in a salad!! Could it, would it work?!”. Well it does *WOOP!* (Although the tomatoes are roasted as opposed to fried). Then I upped the ante and included sticky balsamic as I adore this stuff and it too pairs brilliantly with bacon and egg, so I was onto a winner! You’ll need a ricer to shred the eggs, but if you don’t have one you could just chop the eggs up really finely. INGREDIENTS
1 cup pumpkin seeds Light olive oil spray 1 cup puy (French) lentils 1 cup green split peas 1 punnet baby tomatoes 4 free-range eggs 8 rashers, free- range bacon, rind and excess fat removed 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar 2 teaspoon light olive oil Handful rocket leaves, finely chopped 100g good quality feta or goat’s cheese (optional) Sea salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper for the dressing: 2 teaspoons good quality balsamic vinegar 1 tablespoon EVOO extras to serve: Small handful fresh dill and chives
(Puy lentil & split green pea salad with balsamic bacon egg and pumpkin seeds, b a l sa m i c d r e ssi ng )
METHOD Pre-heat oven to 180˚C (350˚F) fan-forced. Scatter pumpkin on a baking tray and season with a little freshly ground black pepper. Spray lightly with light olive oil then toast in the oven for 10 minutes or until just golden and crisp. Remove and allow to cool. At the same time, place whole baby tomatoes on another baking tray and roast in the oven alongside the seeds for 20 minutes or until the skins start to burst. Remove and allow to cool. Cook peas and lentils as per your packet instructions (usually it’s 1 cup peas/lentils x 3 cups water, bring to boil then simmer for 30 mins until cooked). Drain and rinse thoroughly then drain again and toss both into a large mixing bowl. Season with salt and black pepper and 1/2 tablespoon EVOO. Combine together. Set aside. Half fill a small saucepan with water and bring to the boil. Using a spoon (to avoid cracking the shell), carefully add the eggs to the boiling water and cook for 10 minutes. Remove and run until cold water before shelling and allowing eggs to cool completely. When cool, push the eggs through a ricer fitted on its large hole disc (you don’t want the riced egg to be too small), do this over the mixing bowl so it falls directly into the pea and lentil mix. To cook bacon, trim excess fat and cut rashers into small pieces then fry in a pan over medium-high heat for 2 minutes (you don’t need to add oil to the pan first), stirring often. Mix 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar into a cup with 1 tablespoon olive oil and pour over bacon, (it will sizzle like crazy so avoid getting splattered!) turn down the heat a little and continue cooking, stirring consistently until bacon is caramelised, golden brown and cooked through. Allow to cook on kitchen paper, then add to the bowl along with 3/4 of the pre-roasted pumpkin seeds (retaining 1/4 for scattering over the salads just before serving), tomatoes, and chopped rocket. To make the dressing add oil and vinegar to a screwtop jar and shake to combine, pour over salad ingredients and combine all together thoroughly (taking care not to break up the tomatoes too much). Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. To serve, turn out onto a serving platter and crumble the feta or goats cheese all over the top along with the extra pumpkin seeds, feathery dill leaves and chives snipped over.
Brown rice and garlicky chilli prawn salad, with capers, broccoli & radish, crushed peanuts
Serves 4 Up until about a year ago I really didn’t eat much brown rice, probably due to the fact the sort of brown rice I grew up with tasted like cardboard; claggy and bland ~ overall just rotten. So I was pleasantly surprised when I ate it again here in Oz after about 15 years of being a one-and-only white basmati fan. To be honest I rarely eat the latter much anymore as I just prefer the texture of brown rice. My husband started to cook brown medium-grain for dinners about 12 months ago and now we are hooked. I love its nuttiness and it is a superb source of fibre, so great for keeping you healthy inside. 1 cup contains just under 100 calories; 2 grams of fat, including omegas-3 and 6 fatty acids and has no cholesterol = thumbs up all round, and is great if you are trying to lose weight as it really fills you up and keeps hunger pangs at bay. I normally get a bit puckish about 1.5 hours after dinner as I’m a bit a grazer, but find if I include brown rice in my dinners, in the form of a stir fry or salad I never think of food for the rest of the evening. I often pair it with chicken, but these garlicky prawns work wonderful with it and are packed full of great spicy, sweet and salty flavour. INGREDIENTS
2 cups medium grain brown rice 2 tablespoons Thai fish sauce 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar 1 tablespoon mirin 1 green and red chilli, both finely minced 4 large cloves garlic, peeled and minced 3 limes 350g peeled and cleaned, green prawns 2 cups small broccoli florets ½K cup capers (non - salted) 4 radishes, sliced paper thin on a madolin or carefully by hand ½K cup crushed peanuts Handful coriander and mint leaves, finely chopped Sea salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper Olive and rice bran oil for cooking extras to serve: Extra coriander leaves Extra crushed peanuts to scatter Lemon or lime wedges
(Brown rice and garlicky chilli prawn salad, with feta, capers, broccoli & cucumber)
METHOD Into a mixing bowl add the fish sauce, vinegar, minced green and red chilli, minced garlic and the zest of 1 and juice of 2 limes. Stir then add the prawns, cover and marinade in the fridge for 1-2 hours. 30 minutes before you are ready to cook the prawns, add rice into a medium-sized saucepan and cover with 4 cups (1 litre) water. Bring to the boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce the heat and simmer uncovered for 2530 minutes. Remove from the heat and rinse rice well under cold water, drain thoroughly then add into a mixing bowl. Pour in 1 tablespoon EVOO, coat well then season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. While rice is cooking, fill a medium-sized bowl with cold water and a handful of ice cubes. Set aside near the sink. Half-fill a medium-sized saucepan with water, add a pinch of salt and bring to the boil over high heat. Add the broccoli florets and boil for 1 or 2 minutes max. then quickly drain and plunge into the bowl of iced water. Allow to cool in the water for 5 minutes before draining again. Warm a heavy-duty, non-stick frying pan or skillet warm over high heat. Add the marinaded prawns and cook for 2-3 minutes until opaque, orange in colour and cooked through ~ be careful not to overcook or they will end up a rubbery disaster! Retaining the juices in the pan, remove prawns using a slotted spoon and allow to rest in a mixing bowl for a minute or two before adding 1 tablespoon of EVOO and the juice of 1 lime, coat well and season with a little salt and freshly ground black pepper. Set aside. To assemble the salad; add the cooking juices from the pan into the seasoned brown rice and coat thoroughly. Then add the broccoli florets, thinly sliced radish, crushed peanuts and 1/2 the prawns. Stir all together and turn out onto a serving platter. Scatter the remaining prawns over the top, a few fresh coriander leaves and a few extra crushed peanuts. Serve with extra lime or lemon wedges (optional)
Farro and yellow pea salad with spinach and salmon, white bean black sesame dressing
Serves 4 Farro is a grain I started using a few months back. It’s basically almost identical in taste and texture to pearl barley (so use the latter if you can’t find farro) but just a little nuttier and slightly darker, so I find visually I prefer it and in photos it looks slightly more interesting. It’s a great bulky ingredient to use as a base for a salad and has super texture. You could pair it successfully with lentils or even quinoa but on this occasion I added cooked, split yellow peas. The latter are a great source of fibre and contain a decent amount of protein and zinc along with folate ~ so like mung beans, great to eat if you’re trying to get or are pregnant. Initially the dressing came about by accident, I was testing out frying the cannellini beans which ended in a total disaster (! = big face-slap!) as they just turn into a gloopy mess, so I added the whole lot to the food processor and whizzed them up with the other ingredients to form an almost runny, hummus-like dressing. The sesame is a good pairing with both the white beans and the fish, and as a garnish the black seeds too look great visually. This salad is a fantastic way of getting Brussels sprouts into your diet, as instead of the slimy connotations most people put on these mini cabbages, this method sees them sliced super finely and they retain a great crunchy texture yet blend subtly into all the other flavour-packed ingredients and the fact you eat them raw is another win-win as you retain all their minerals such magnesium and iron. INGREDIENTS
for the dressing: 2 tablespoons EVOO 1 x 400g tin cannellini beans, rinsed and drained Juice and zest of 1 lemon (use a microplane for the zest) L cup low fat, natural yoghurt 2 tablespoons light sour cream 1 tablespoon milk 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar 1 teaspoon black sesame seeds for the salad: 2 cups farro 1 cup yellow split peas 6 large Brussels sprouts K cup toasted flaked almonds Handful (50g) baby spinach leaves, finely chopped Sea salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper 300g hot smoked salmon 1 lemon
(Farro and yellow pea salad with spinach and salmon, white bean black sesame dressing)
METHOD To cook the farro and split yellow peas; add both into an individual, medium-sized pot and cover the 2 cups of farro with 6 cups (1.5 litres) water and the 1 cup of peas with 3 cups (750ml) water. Bring to the boil, then reduce and simmer for approx. 30-35 minutes or until cooked through (yet still retaining a little bite) and most/all the water is absorbed (test around the 25 minute mark to see how they are going). Drain and rinse very well under cold water. Drain again thoroughly, then add into a large mixing bowl, add 1 tablespoon EVOO and season well with a good pinch of crumbled sea salt flakes and a generous amount of freshly ground black pepper. Whilst the farro and peas are cooking, make the mayo dressing. Add all ingredients into the bowl of a food processor and whizz for 6-7 minutes until really smooth and creamy. Using a mandolin set on its finest blade setting (mine is 0.75mm), cut the Brussels sprouts. To do this hold the stem end of the sprout in your fingers and very carefully start to slice until about 1/2 way down the sprout ~ you want to avoid the ‘woodier’ end of the sprout and just slice the greener part from rounded top down. Please look out for your fingers whilst cutting and use the guard if you are not used to cutting on a mandolin without it. Accident can happen in seconds on these machines. If you don’t have a mandolin, slice the sprouts as thinly as you can using a sharp knife. Add the finely sliced sprouts to the farro and pea mixture, along with the juice and zest of 1 lemon (I use a microplane to zest the lemon so it’s really very fine), toasted flaked almonds, chopped spinach, sesame seeds and finally the salmon which you flake in large chunks and combine all together. To serve, turn the mixed salad out into a serving bowl or platter and sprinkle a few extra black sesame seeds over the top followed by a few snipped chives and feathery dill leaves. Serve with the white bean dressing on the side or drizzled over. Note ~ if you can’t get hot smoked salmon, you can substitute with flaked poached fresh salmon.
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