Monthly Archives: April 2015

Spring Asparagus with mushroom sauce

¬†Happy Easter to all who had celebrated it on the 5th April! I know, you’d already eaten a dozen of eggs, so today’s recipe without an egg in it. ūüôā
¬†A bunch of asparagus reminds me flowers, the start of spring and a time of new¬†beginnings.¬†Do you know that the name¬†asparagus¬†come from Greek word meaning ‘sprout’ or ‘shoot’. This vegetable is believed to have originated 2000 years ago in eastern Mediterranean region.¬†Asparagus is loaded with¬†antioxidants¬†and nutrients, and has an aphrodisiac qualities!¬† ūüėČ
I’ve been¬†enjoying¬†crunchy asparagus for a breakfast with a poached or scrambled eggs, but I’ve been looking for new recipes.. I also made a quiche with asparagus and roast chicken leftovers, which was tasty as any pie. Finally, I stumbled upon an interesting recipe which called to blanch¬†asparagus and then top it with a mushroom sauce. I love this delicious and full of flavor mushroom sauce, that can be great with other spring vegetables as well or even with eggs! Below recipe can be served as a nice appetizer or a side dish which you can make very quick!Spring Asparagus with mushroom sauce

Spring Asparagus with mushroom sauce

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients
300-400g asparagus
1 tbsp olive oil
1 shallot, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, chopped, optional
1 tsp fresh thyme leaves, or 1/2 tsp dried
2 tbsp water or veg.broth
1 tbsp dry white wine, optional
2 tbsp cream cheese
5-6 medium mushrooms (button or oyster), sliced
1+1 tbsp grated parmesan
sea salt and white pepper to taste
  • For the sauce, in a frying pan heat oil, add onion, garlic, thyme, season to taste; cook until tender. Stir in water, wine and cream cheese. Bring to boil, then add mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes or until mushrooms ready and sauce is slightly thickened. Stir in 1 tbsp parmesan.
  • Wash and¬†discard¬†woody bases from asparagus. Cook it in a boiling water for 3-4 minutes or until crispy, drain.
  • Arrange asparagus on a serving plate, top with mushroom sauce, sprinkle with remaining parmesan.
Enjoy!
recipe adapted from here

Citrusy Scampi with fennel salad

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One day my husband brought home these strange-looking shrimps from a local fish market. A fishmonger called it ‘scampi’, wikipedia told it’s a kind of shrimps or langoustines. So, I’d decided to make a citrusy marinade as for shrimps and then fried it. Sliced fennel with cubes of bell pepper and orange segments worked out great with fried scampi. The smell was amazing! It turned out unbelievably delicious! This scampi recipe can be done in minimal time, super tasty and will leave you satisfied! Scampi with fennel-orange saladNow, it’s one of my favorite seafood meals. Moreover, it looks elegant and you can serve it as a top-class dish for your guests or for a romantic dinner under the stars in your garden. ūüôāIngredients for Scampi Recipe

Citrusy scampi with fennel salad

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: moderate
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You can substitute scampi with large prawns.
Ingredients
3 large scampi per person as a starter or 6-7 as a main course
Marinade
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp lime juice
1/2-1 tbsp orange juice
2-3 tsp orange zest
2-3 garlic cloves, crushed or chopped, as you like
1 tbsp fresh chopped coriander
S&P to taste
Salad
1/2 red onion
1 small fennel bulb or 1/2 large
1/2-1 bell pepper, red
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tsp white balsamic vinegar
1 orange
S&P to taste
Serving
fresh chopped coriander
extra virgin olive oil or basil oil
Preparation method
  1. Cut the fennel and onion into  julienne (thin slices) and add to the mixing bowl with the balsamic vinegar and oil, toss in. Cut bell pepper into small cubes, add to the bowl. Remove the rind on the orange then cut into segments and add to the mixing bowl (save all orange juices and add it to the salad); gently toss in the bowl with all ingredients. Reserve at room temperature.
  2. Clean scampi, leave tails on if desired. In a bowl mix together olive oil, citrus juices, garlic, chopped coriander and orange zest. Add scampi and leave to marinate for 30 minutes to 1-2 hours. Heat the frying pan on a medium-high heat, add scampi without marinade. Cook for 2-4 minutes on each side, depends on the size of scampi. Season to taste.
  3. Season the salad and gently mix. Divide the salad evenly on plates. Serve salad with scampi placed on top. Sprinkle with finely chopped coriander and drizzle even more oil, if desired.
Enjoy!

Scampi in citrusy marinade

Sharing at 62nd FF party with Angie, co-hosts Jess, Prudy and all guests! Hope you all gonna love these bright, healthy and delicious dish!

Homemade Aromatic Breadcrumbs

¬†I’m sure most of you eating bread almost every day. And I guess you have pretty much leftovers, which going to be mouldy or dry out. My¬†decision¬†is not to buy or eat less bread, is to make your own homemade breadcrumbs! Of course, you can make a bread pudding or French toasts with the leftover bread, but I bet you do not¬†always¬†have a time to prepare it in the morning.¬†Easy to follow steps allow you to make¬†aromatic breadcrumbs, which is extremely good and more tasty than store-bought, and you know all ingredients you’ve used. Include different types of bread and play with herbs, I prefer rosemary, thyme, basil, sage.¬†Breadcrumbs should be store in an air-tight container, or even in the freezer. When you need some, just spoon out the amount of breadcrumbs you need.
¬†I make a simple pasta topped with breadcrumbs, or stuffed chicken breasts. You can also make a¬†delicious¬†snack – baked¬†slices of zucchini and/or eggplants. For that you need to combine¬†breadcrumbs with dried or minced garlic, chopped fresh parsley and thyme, fresh ground pepper, olive oil, grated parmesan, then top each slice of veggie with the mixture and bake. ūüôā
¬†I hope you will never buy¬†commercial¬†breadcrumbs again, or at least you will try. ūüėČ
Homemade Aromatic Breadcrumbs

Homemade Aromatic Breadcrumbs

¬†If you have only few leftover bread slices, cut them into cubes, put into a freezer bag and place in the fridge. When you’ve got more leftovers, keep adding bread pieces to the bag until you have enough¬†quantity. Then follow the recipe steps.
 
Ingredients
one/two-days old bread or any leftovers
1 tsp each: rosemary, basil, thyme
  • Cut bread¬†into small pieces with a knife, then arrange on a baking tray. Bake in preheated 160-170C/150C-fan oven for 20-30 minutes or until bread pieces is golden and crispy.
  • Put bread pieces into a food processor along with dried herbs and blend to a small crumbs. You can also put bread pieces into a plastic bag and smash it with a kitchen mallet.
  • Put into a glass jar/container and cover tightly. Or put breadcrumbs into a freezer bag and keep in the freezer.