Tag Archives: vegetables

Eggplant wedges

Hey everyone! I came back from the holidays recently and slowly getting into blogging again. In my previous posts I shared with you some recipes using white and red currants, and you may think that I have had only berries during the summer time in Russia.. Yes I did! This summer has been bountiful: lots of amazing produce, including various berries – gooseberries, strawberries and currants, as well as vegetables like cucumbers, zucchini, eggplants.

I’m so glad that I was able to enjoy amazing veggies and greens form my parents’ garden. We cooked many dishes using these vegetables, including zucchini oladushki (fritters), sauteed veggies, salads, and so on. Finally we get tired of cooking eggplants and zucchini the same way. Moreover, I missed Dubai with its seductive aromas and herbs, rich and spice flavours in the air.. Fortunately, I brought my favourite spice – zaatar, and the decision was found: to make eggplant wedges with a Middle Eastern note! It was an easy and quick way to prepare eggplants. I drizzled it with aromatic olive oil, sweet molasses and of course zaatar, then served with a slice of country-style bread, yogurt and sliced fresh tomatoes!Eggplant Wedges

Eggplant wedges

  • Servings: 3-4
  • Difficulty: easy
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You can substitute pomegranate molasses with balsamic vinegar or any other pomegranate sauce.

Ingredients

3 medium eggplants
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp pomegranate molasses
3 tsp zaatar mix spice
1 tbsp sesame seeds
pomegranate seeds
100g plain yogurt or sour cream for serving, optional
salt, pepper to taste
Preparation method
  1. Cut washed eggplants into 8-10 wedges. Sprinkle with some salt and leave for 20-30 minutes. Place under running water to wash off the salt. Arrange wedges onto lined baking tray.
  2. In a small bowl, combine olive oil, molasses and zaatar. Brush eggplant wedges with this mixture. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Bake in preheated 180C for 25 minutes. Then increase the temperature to 200C and bake for 20-30 minutes more, or until eggplants wedges are soft and nicely browned.
  4. Arrange eggplant wedges onto a serving plate, sprinkle with sesame and pomegranate seeds.
  5. Serve with yogurt on side, or pour it over warm wedges.

Enjoy!

Sharing with all bloggers at Fiesta Friday party!

Masoor dal (red lentil) Soup

Masoor dal is a split red lentils, widely used in Asian cuisine, particularly in Indian. Lentil is a good source of protein and fiber. These lentils do not need to soak overnight, they cook very quickly, so the recipe is perfect for everyday cooking. Adding aromatic Asian spices enhances lentils’ taste and brings loads of flavour to the soup! Rich, amazingly good vegetarian thick soup; you should give this recipe a try! 🙂Masoor Dal (red lentil) Soup

Masoor dal (red lentil) Soup

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
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You can skip chilli if you don’t want the soup hot, or add more if you like it really spicy.
The longer you cook the soup – more creamy it’ll be.
Ingredients
300g red lentils, washed
200g (2 small) potatoes, cut into small cubes
2 Tbsp olive or sunflower oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp mustard seeds
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/3-1/2 tsp chilli seeds, optional
1 clove
2 bay leaves
5-6 pink peppercorns, crushed
sea salt, to taste
3-4 Tbsp fresh coriander, chopped
naan/flatbread, to serve
  1. Heat the oil in a heavy-bottomed pan. Add mustard seeds, chilli (if using), cumin, bay leaves, clove and fry until fragrant. Add onion and garlic, cook for 5-7 minutes until soft. Stir in potatoes – fully coat it in oil and spices. Sprinkle with turmeric, pink pepper and salt, stir.
  2. Stir in lentils, add water to cover the mixture. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer until vegetables are cooked. Add more boiling water or continue to simmer further to achieve your preferred consistency. Adjust the seasoning.
  3. Stir in fresh coriander. Serve with bread.

Vegetable bake with mozzarella and bacon

This simple, good-looking and so-delicious bake is a time-saving dish for busy week days, or when you’re tired but still want to prepare homey food. I love one-pot recipes, whether its made on a hob or in the oven, they are always comforting, full of flavor and tasty!
For this bake I used young potatoes, that can be substitute with regular, but make sure to slice it very thinly. Want better and quicker? Use boiled or roast potatoes! For the vegetarian option – omit the bacon.
Also the bake can be great and tasty work lunch, you can see it’s not difficult or time-intensive task. Homemade lunches are definitely healthier than any fast food, you know every single ingredient in it, also you can make it balanced, nutritious and satisfying. Beyond that, such home-packed meals is one of the simplest ways to trim your budget.Vegetable Bake with mozzarella and bacon

Vegetable bake with mozzarella and bacon

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients
6-7 small potatoes
1 leek, chopped
1-2 capsicum
3-4 bacon slices, smoked
70-100g mozzarella, or as much as you wish, cut into cubes
40-50g pecorino or parmesan cheese, grated
1 spring of fresh rosemary, or 1 tsp dried
1/3 tsp paprika
1/3 tsp turmeric
5-7 mix peppercorns (black, white, pink), crushed
fresh basil, few leaves, for garnish, optional
sea salt, to taste
2 Tbsp olive oil

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 200C. Grease a baking dish with olive oil.
  2. Slice and fry bacon (without any oil). Transfer to paper towel to absorb exsess fat. Set aside.
  3. While the frying pan is still hot, add leek to it and saute on a medium heat for few minutes. Do not let it brown.
  4. Throughly wash and rub potatoes, thinly slice. Roughly chop capsicums. Put vegetables in a bowl, add 1 Tbsp olive oil, spices, season with salt and stir well.
  5. Spread leek on the baking dish. Add vegetables.
  6. Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until potatoes are tender. Add bacon, mozzarella and pecorino/parmesan, and bake for 5-10 minutes more. If you have grill, put the baking dish under the grill for 5 minutes.
  7. Sprinkle with basil and extra pecorino/parmesan, if desired.
  8. Serve with green salad.

Enjoy!

Potato bake with mozzarella and bacon

 

Pokhlyobka – The Old Russian Pottage

 Pokhlyobka is a kind of thick Russian soup made by adding flour, grains, potatoes or other vegetables. It is similar to the Britain Pottage.
 Long time ago, it was a main meal among poor strata of Russian society. Most of the time, villagers and peasant farmers cooked and ate vegetarian pottage, because such expensive ingredients like meat or fish were not affordable for them. It’s worth mentioning that meat was eaten once or twice a year; more luckily were farmers, who had lived near rivers and could caught a fish throughout the year. The dish was easy to prepare, and people could use the remains of the yesterday meal – chunks of boiled potatoes or cabbage, then add extra millet or buckwheat. The rich part also ate pokhlyobka, but it was significantly better and besides potatoes, contained the meat of duck, hazel-hens, and etc.
Pokhlyobka
 My recipe of Russian pottage is also without meat.. Definitely, a good piece of fatty pork or beef could makes the pokhlyobka especially rich, so if you’re not a vegetarian you may add it. But I suggest you to try the non-meat option, which is infused with aromatic spices, and delicious pumpkin and thick sour cream make the soup absolutely irresistible!
‘Acoulina cooked absolutely delicious koulebyaks, various pokhlyobki..kvas..soaked apples..’ from the Russian novel ‘Whites, blacks and grays’  by Ivan Lazhechnikov written in 1856.
Pokhlyobka - the old Russian thick soup
  ‘The dinner was absolutely delicious that day: pokhlyobka made from goose meat with wild onions, venison shashlik and slices of bear meat..’ from the Russian novel ‘Plutonia’ by Vladimir Obruchev written in 1915.

Pokhlyobka - The Old Russian Pottage

  • Servings: 2-3
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients
120-130g yellow split peas
3 small potatoes
300g pumpkin or squash
1 medium carrot, sliced
60-70g celery root, cut into small cubes
1 small onion, thinly sliced or finely chopped
1 garlic clove, chopped, optional
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
1 tsp cumin
2 bay leaves
1.2 l water
1 Tbsp sunflower oil
salt, black pepper to taste
fresh parsley, chopped, for serving
sour cream, for serving, optional
fresh country-style bread, for serving, optional

Preparation

  1. Wash peas, put in a pan, cover with water and soak overnight. Pour out the water. Cover peas with new cold water. Boil on a medium heat for 15-20 minutes, until peas are tender. Skim the foam during the boiling.
  2. Meanwhile, in a frying pan, heat the oil, add spices and fry them for a minute. Add garlic, onion, carrot, celery root and saute vegetables on a medium heat for 8-10 minutes.
  3. Peel and cut into small cubes potatoes and pumpkin.
  4. Add potatoes to the pottage. Season with salt and pepper. Simmer for 8-10 minutes.
  5. Add pumpkin along with fried vegetables, simmer the pottage for 10 minutes more or until the pumpkin is soft.
  6. Adjust seasoning. If the pottage is too thick, add more hot water and stir through.
  7. Garnish each plate with a dollop of sour cream and chopped parsley. Serve with a slice of bread.
Enjoy the old Russian farmer meal! 🙂
I’m bringing this traditional recipe to all lovely people who’s enjoying the FF party today!

A touch of summer. Radish salad with goat cheese and black salt.

I know! It’s autumn out there.. and most of you would like to see hearty, meaty dishes with lots of roasted vegetables.. When I think “autumn and hearty” I always imagine stew and potatoes! Or that’s because I love potatoes! 😀 You know, in Russian potato is ‘kartoshka’, and we consume it a lot. But today’s hero is a fresh salad!Radish salad with goat cheese, black salt and sesame seeds

 The temperature in Dubai slowly but steady going down.. I was pretending again that it’s kinda autumn while did my shopping, and was looking for pumpkin and beets, when stumble upon beautiful radishes! They literally told me – buy us, eat us! 😀 Certainly, I had to buy them! Beautiful radishes

I love simple salads, when you can cut cucumbers and radishes, dress it with sour cream or olive oil, season with sea salt, and that’s it! This salad is one of such variations, but with a small twist – pungent goat cheese, fancy black salt and crunchy sesame seeds! Oh, they work super here! The salad looks so bright and cheerful, that I bet you want it right now! 😉 I hope you can get fresh radishes and make it.. Otherwise, welcome to the UAE, the country of eternal sun!

Ingredients for one person
Radishes 5-6, or as many as you like
Cucumber 1
Cherry tomatoes 4-5
Goat cheese 1-2 Tbsp
Coriander or parsley 2-3 Tbsp, chopped
Chives 1 Tbsp, chopped
Sesame seeds 1-2 tsp, roasted
Walnuts 1 Tbsp, roasted and chopped
Black salt and pepper, to taste
Extra virgin olive oil 1 Tbsp
Balsamic vinegar or cream 1 tsp
Method
Thinly slice radishes and cucumbers. Cut tomatoes into haves. Put all vegetables in a serving bowl, add all remaining ingredients.
Enjoy!
Radish salad