Roasted Beetroot Salad

Roasted Beetroot Salad

As you may know I started my very first Raised Vegetable Beds this year, it’s something I’ve been wanting to do for a while but as the story goes, we work & we work and never seem to find time to start anything. This was the year that I was finally going to put a plan of action together, ordered my raised beds, got them all painted and treated, filled them up, planted the seeds and waited. I can’t tell you how exciting it was to see my first little green shoot pop up.

I love Beetroot, so that was the first seed planted and I am now starting to harvest them. Oh my, freshness, freshness, freshness…..there is nothing better that eating straight from your garden, I harvested some yesterday and decided on a lovely refreshing salad today for my lunch.

Fresh Beetroot from my garden

How to Roast Beetroot

First wash all the mud etc off of the beets and trim of the stalks & leaves, but keep the leaves aside for later. If not using straight away, store in a perforated plastic bag in the salad bins in your fridge, these will keep for about 2 weeks.

Beetroot & Beetroot Leaves Storage in Fridge

Using Tin foil, place the Beets (with the skin on) on and sprinkle a little olive oil & salt, wrap up into a parcel, not too tightly as you want the steam to help cook the beets, then bake on a tray in centre of your oven at 200 deg for about 45 minutes.

Remove and allow steam to escape from parcel then allow to cool slightly. At this stage, I advise to wear gloves, you WILL get Beetroot stained if you don’t…lol! With gloves on gently rub the skin and you’ll notice it comes away very easily, remove all the skin and slice into wedges or bite sized pieces. Yum!

Using the saved leaves, these can be cooked just like Kale. Bring a pan of water to the boil add a little salt and blanch for a few minutes, remove and drain excess water through a colander/sieve. I love the colour of the water here too.

Place leaves in a bowl with beetroot, squeeze some lemon juice and 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar over and mix. Sprinkle over some Goats cheese or Feta cheese and chopped walnuts to serve.

You could also cook some couscous or bulgur wheat to add to make it a more filling bowl.

A Bowl of Roasted Beetroot, Beetroot Leaves, Goats Cheese, Walnuts


Cranberry & Walnut Scones

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Oh yum. I’ve not had a scone in a while, so looking in my cupboards I had some Walnuts & Cranberries to use up and decided to give it a try. These were absolutely delicious, served with a good quality butter they were perfect with a cuppa. Lovely little afternoon tea scone.

 

Makes 6

100g Light Brown Sugar (or white caster sugar) (plus 1 tbsp)

2 tbsp lemon juice

300g Plain Flour

1 tbsp baking powder

Freshly grated lemon zest – 1 lemon

1 tsp salt

75g unsalted butter

50g dried cranberries

50g chopped walnuts

50ml Milk

50ml Double cream

 

  1. Preheat your oven to 190 deg. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
  2. Mix 1 tbsp sugar & 1 tbsp lemon juice together in a dish and set aside, this will be for the glaze.
  3. Whisk flour, baking powder, lemon zest, salt, and sugar in large bowl. Add chilled butter & using fingertips, rub in until you get breadcrumb like mixture.        20190710_141425
  4.  Mix in cranberries and walnuts. Then add in the milk & cream and mix through 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. Toss with fork or hands until dough comes together in moist clumps.
  5. Floured a work surface and roll out till about 1 inch thick. Using a cutter (about 7-8cm diameter) cut out 6 servings and place onto your baking sheet. Using the glaze brush lightly over the scones. Bake for about 18 minutes. Or until a knife comes out clean and slightly browned                                                                              20190713_145835
  6. Serve with some butter. Yummy!

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Chocolate & Walnut Cake

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OMG, this was so yummy! We had a soup ‘n’ pudding kinda day and this is what I decided to try.

Serves about 8

110g plain flour

2 tbsp cocoa powder

110g golden caster sugar

50ml olive oil

50ml walnut oil

55g dark chocolate, chopped

55g chopped walnuts

2 large eggs

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp vanilla extract

pinch of salt

100g melted chocolate for topping

30g chopped walnuts for topping

 

  1. Preheat oven to fan 170 deg. Grease a baking tin (approx 12″)
  2. Blitz the walnuts until fine. Transfer to a bowl and add in the sift flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt then mix.
  3. Add in the caster sugar, oils, chopped chocolate, eggs and vanilla extract and mix until well blended.
  4. Spoon the batter mix into the baking tin and bake for approx 25 minutes.
  5. Remove and cool on a wire rack.
  6. Melt the chocolate in a microwave and spoon on top of the cake, crumble the remaining walnuts on top. Serve. Yummy!

 


Walnut Bread

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Oh WOW! That’s all I’m going to say, well apart from, you have to try this. I am always looking for something different and this little recipe came from Kitchen Aid . Usually, I follow a recipe then on my second attempt change it up a little and experiment, but not on this one, it simply is delicious. Especially with some vintage cheddar…Mmmmmm.

 

450g plain flour

50g Rye flour – I used wholemeal

1 tsp bicarbonate of soda

1 tsp salt

45g melted salted butter

1 tbsp treacle

325ml buttermilk

200g walnut pieces

 

  1. Pre heat oven to 180 deg. I used the convection bake setting.
  2. Place the flours, bicarbonate of soda and salt into a large bowl and stir together. Make a large hole in the centre of the flour mixture and pour in the melted butter and treacle, walnut pieces plus enough of the buttermilk to make a loose sticky dough.
  3. Tip the dough onto a lightly dusted work surface. The dough will be quite sticky. Shape it into a large ball with a taut top. Place the dough on a floured baking tray and flatten it a bit. Using a knife, score the bread20180824_100603
  4.  Dust with flour then bake in the oven for 40 minutes, or until the bread is golden brown and has risen.                                                                      20180824_101705
  5. Remove from oven and allow to cool on a wire rack. Serve with some lovely cheddar or simply butter.

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Chocolate Nut Cake

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On deciding what to do next using my crisper plate, I thought I’ve not really tried a cake?? Would it work?? Only 1 way to find out………………………..results were fab, tasty and baked in 10 minutes…….revelation!

 

Serves 12-16

200g Dark Chocolate – Melted (I used 70% cocoa)

240g butter

45g Walnuts

45g Hazelnuts

45g Almonds

170g golden caster sugar

1 tbsp flour

4 eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

pinch salt

 

  1. If you have an Induction hob, melt chocolate in a pan on No. 1, if not melt using a glass bowl over boiling water. Once nearly melted add in butter and melt through, stirring a couple of times. Remove from heat and allow to cool.  20170917_181232
  2. Chop nuts into very small pieces or use a processor and pulse but make sure not to make into crumbs.
  3. Separate egg yolks from egg whites
  4. One at a time add egg yolks to the chocolate and butter mix, stirring continuously.
  5. Then stir in vanilla, sugar, nuts & flour
  6. Whisk the egg whites together until stiff peaks, then gently fold into your chocolate mixture.                                                             20170917_181713
  7. Pour the mixture onto the crisper plate and cook on dynamic crisp setting for 10 minutes.
  8. Remove from oven and allow to cool. Once cooled remove from plate, slice and serve with some lovely whipped cream or ice cream if you prefer. YUMMY!!!!

 

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Spinach Pesto

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I had some Garlic Bread left over from dinner last night, so I wanted to try something different with it rather than just heating it up. I just love spinach, so why not? It turned out absolutely delicious….if I do say so myself. lol!

Makes 1 small pot – about 1 cup

2 cups of fresh spinach leaves or 6 rounds of frozen spinach

1/2 cup of fresh flat leaf parsley. (you could use basil also)

1/4 cup of walnuts or pine nuts

1/4 cup of parmesan cheese – freshly grated

2 garlic cloves

juice of 1 lemon

1 tsp sea salt

1 tsp black pepper

2 tbsp olive oil

 

  1. Put everything into a food processor and blitz until blended together.

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Serve up. I had mine on bread but you could use this as a base for pizza, in salads, so much more. Will keep in fridge covered for up to 3 days.

 

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Breakfast Smoothie Bowls

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Oh…. I do love breakfast time! New Year, new ideas, new breakfasts. Having some yoghurt left over I decided to try out some healthy smoothie bowls for my breakfast this week, and they we sooooooo delicious! A lovely smooth thick texture and full of healthy vitamins, whats not to like?

Here are 2 combinations that I tried and succeeded with.

  1. 1 x Avocado, 1 x Banana, 5 x Walnuts, 1 tsp vanilla, 4 tbsp natural yoghurt (low fat), 50ml milk, Mix everything in a blender or use a hand blender then top with 1 tbsp chia seeds, 1 tsp cinnamon to garnish
  2. 1 x Avocado, 1 x Banana, 6 Strawberries, 5 walnuts, 4 tbsp natural yoghurt (low fat), 50ml milk, Mix everything in a blender then top with 1 tbsp chia seeds and 2 strawberries to garnish.

I now have the urge to try more combinations, keep you posted!

 

 

 


Camargue Red Rice Salad

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For the love of Red! Love it when random ingredients put together turns out delicious!

 

40g Camargue Red Rice

1 Beetroot – grated

1/4 Avocado – chopped

1/2 tin of Chick Peas

1 tomato – chopped/sliced

Small chunk of Feta Cheese

4 Walnuts – chopped finely

1 tbsp good Olive oil

1 tsp balsamic vinegar

 

  1. Cook rice as per instructions on packet (about 30 mins)
  2. Mix all other ingredients into a bowl, add rice one cooked.
  3. Mix together olive oil and balsamic vinegar, drizzle on top to flavour.

This is a great lunch, very healthy, full of protein and super tasty.

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Smoked Duck Salad

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Using my Rainbow Carrots and lovely Beetroots from my local Farmers I wanted a lovely salad for lunch today as the sun was shining, I had recently bought some Smoked Duck Breast from my local farm store which was already cooked, so combining everything I had the most amazing Saturday lunch Salad.

 

1 Cooked Duck Breast (from Fencebay) – sliced

1 Carrot – sliced longways into thin strips

1 Beetroot – sliced thinly

Fresh Salad leaves (of your choice)

Small handful of Feta Cheese

Small handful of Walnuts

1 tbsp Balsamic Vinegar

1 tbsp Good Olive oil

1 tbsp Hoisin Sauce

 

  1. Mix together salad leaves, carrot, beetroot, balsamic vinegar and olive oil in a large bowl.
  2. Place salad mix onto a plate
  3. Top with crumbled feta cheese and sprinkle crushed walnuts over top.
  4. Place sliced Duck breast on top and drizzle Hoisin sauce over duck.

 

This is do tasty and quick, very healthy and amazing flavour sensation in your mouth. All in 5 minutes. Yummy!

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Tasty Veg and Goats Cheese Salad

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Serves 1

1/2 Aubergine – Cubed

1/2 Red onion – diced

1 Tomato – cubed

1 tbsp lemon juice

1/2 garlic clove

1/4 tbsp Walnut oil

Salt & Pepper

1/4 cup of crumbled goats cheese

1/4 cup (30g) toasted walnuts – chopped

2 tbsp chopped parsley

1/2 tbsp sesame seeds

 

  1. To make the dressing mix the lemon juice, walnut oil and garlic in a bowl with salt and pepper.
  2. Steam the aubergine for 10 mins. Squeeze any excess water. (If you have a Luce Combi microwave use the vegetable setting to steam)
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  4. Combine the Aubergine, goat cheese, walnuts, tomato, red onion, and parsley in a large bowl with the dressing. Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle the sesame seeds on top. Serve with a tasty glass of Chardonnay.