Monastery beetroot salad with coriander seeds

 Hello guys! How is your foodie-blogo-life going on?
I’ve wanted to post this recipe for so long that almost forgot about it. When I was a student I didn’t want to spend much time cooking, so the food was usually prepared well ahead of time, and then reheat, or simple dishes were all the time favorite, like boiled potatoes served with homemade pickles or macaroni a la flot, or famous salad vinegret was cooked pretty often. So, the recipe of this salad I read in one tiny little book with few recipes suitable for the Lent diet, when you’re not allowed to eat meat and dairy products; and I liked it from the first spoon (even though first time I didn’t use neither honey or coriander seeds) and since then I prepare it. I highly suggest not to omit coriander seeds, as they give so much flavor, and the simple beetroot salad turns into something special. And I love the idea that this bright salad can be made all year round and served whether as a starter or a healthy main dish (add some roast fish steaks on a side for the more nourishing meal).

MonasteryBeetroot Salad

Monastery beetroot salad with coriander seeds

  • Servings: 2-4
  • Difficulty: very easy
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You’ll need 
450-500g beetroot
2 medium brown onions
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1.5 tbsp whole coriander seeds, crushed
150g prunes, without stones
100g walnuts, raw or dry-roasted
2 tsp runny honey
some chopped parsley or dill, for garnish, optional
How to make it
  1. Boil or roast beetroots until ready to eat. Peel, cut into cubes or wedges.
  2. Saute onions in oil until translucent, add coriander seeds and fry for 1 minute more.
  3. Chop prunes and walnuts, combine with honey. Mix into beetroot.
  4. Drizzle with extra oil and honey, if desired. Sprinkle with some more coriander seeds and (optionally) with fresh chopped parsley or coriander.
Enjoy!
MonasteryBeetroot Salad with coriander seeds

 

Red pepper Dip

Hello-hello! If you have seen the previous post, I promised the recipe with roasted peppers, so for keeping you waiting for so long. Here it is. The dip is such a nice snack, especially for mums, when you are doing lots of thing at a time, it is easy to forget to feed yourself (of course not your child, haha). All you need for this lovely dip is to prepare roasted peppers ahead, and then just whizz peppers with nuts and oil in a blender until you have a rough paste. In fact, I actually prefer not to measure ingredients in such simple recipes, throw in as you feel – that’s all. Then scoop the dip into a beautiful bowl, put on a table with some sliced bread or crackers on the side, and dig in when you have a time. Red pepper dip goes nicely with roasted chicken or fried chicken breasts. Yum! Healthy, delicious and sooooo quick to prepare, sounds perfect. 😀
Roasted red pepper dip
I’ve tried this dip with a store-bought almond meal and homemade roasted ground almonds, and surprisingly I love the option with almond meal. Honestly speaking, I thought I would like a note of roasted nuts in the dip but I didn’t. The choice is up to you, try both and let me know what do you like more.
Dip with roasted red peppers and almonds
Tips
If you like it spicy – add chili flakes or chili oil.
If you want to make the consistency thinner – add a splash of water.
No nuts? Not a problem, make it nut free – sub almonds with breadcrumbs.
Red pepper dip

Red pepper Dip

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
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What You’ll Need
1 roasted&marinated red pepper
1 garlic clove from the marinade
1 tbsp EV olive oil
2 tbsp almond meal
6-8 basil leaves (optional)
1-2 tbsp water, optional (to thin the dip, if desired)
Salt, pepper, to taste
How to Make it
  • Put all ingredients in a blender, blend until desired consistency.
  • To make it thinner, add water – spoon by spoon, but not much!
  • Serve with bread, crackers or even chicken.
Enjoy!

Radish-Cucumber salad

 Many of you already greeted the autumn season and began to bake various apple pies and cook hearty dishes. Autumn signs have been also trickling into Dubai, but slowly and it is still summer-like days here with plenty of strong sunshine during the day-time. Mornings and days, though still warm and sunny as usual, have been followed by lovely and cool evenings. Despite of all hot days, it’s a big advantage of living near the Gulf: we can enjoy the sea and sand any time over the year long. That’s what we did one afternoon – went to a beach. But before the joy of swimming in the sea, I prepared a very simple, light and fresh, and crunchy salad. It needs only few ingredients including beautiful radishes, which I found at local supermarket and just couldn’t resist picking up a huge bunch.Radishes-Cucumbers-Spring Onion

As you can see, the recipe is V-E-R-Y simple: all you need is lovefresh sliced cucumbers and bright radishes, chopped spring onions, some seasoning and sour cream!

Radish-Cucumber salad

 I like this salad. It reminds me summer holidays: staying at parents house, fun of gardening and eating lots of fresh veggies and berries. And for that reason I decided to mix up vegetable slices with traditional Russian dressing – sour cream, instead of olive oil. Simple and well-loved. Be generous with spring onion!  You may also add some chopped dill, if you wish.
Radish-Cucumber salad (with sour cream dressing)
 Don’t be sad if the summer is over in your place, I will post autumn recipes soon {more pie recipes are on the way..} Thanks for reading and Stay turned! 🙂

Olive Oil and Rosemary Crackers

 I’ve been on a homemade everything kick for a quite long time.. 😀 Homemade crackers is not an exception. I’ve tried lots of crackers recipes and usually crackers turned out like cookies, not very crunchy, tasted like shortbread cookies, or I was unable to roll out dough thinly. Finally, after tasting and comparing different recipes, I created my own recipe of salty crackers. You need only few ingredients to prepare these amazingly tasty, crunchy and aromatic crackers! The dough contains extra virgin olive oil and rosemary, natural bitterness and pepperyness of the oil and piney aroma of the herb give incredible taste and smell to the dough and crackers. You can make sticks, twists or roll out the dough very thinly and cut out any shape you like. I enjoy these crackers as is, it’s a nice midday snack; you can also make a sauce and dip crackers into it.Crackers Twists

This edible bouquet for all beautiful and wonderful ladies, who has brought many tasty dishes to Fiesta Friday party today! A feast for the eyes and the stomach! 😉Rosemary Crackers Bouquet

Olive Oil and Rosemary Crackers

  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients
160g strong/bread flour
130g wholemeal flour + more if needed
3/4 tsp baking powder
2 tsp ground sea salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black or white pepper
1.5-2 Tbsp finely chopped fresh rosemary 
150ml water
90ml extra virgin olive oil
 
  • In a large bowl, mix flours, baking powder, salt, pepper, rozemary. Add water and mix with a spatula or wooden spoon. Add olive oil and mix again. Place the dough on a lightly floured surface and knead with hands. Add a bit more flour if the dough is too sticky.
  • Cut the dough into equal 6-8 pieces. Roll each piece into circle as thinly as you like, cut into squares, diamond shape. You can also cut into strips (1.5-2cm width, 15cm length) and then twist each strip.
  • Place crackers on a baking sheet and bake in preheated 220-230C (450F) oven for 10-11 minutes or until golden color.

I keep crackers in airtight container in the fridge up to 5 days.

 
Enjoy!

Best Ever Plum Crumble

 I discovered crumbles not long time ago, but immediately fall in love. Thank to the British for this amazing, simple and absolutely delicious dish! I’ve already tried various sweet crumble recipes – with peaches, mixed berried, pears.. I love them all! But.. Once I stumbled upon a new crumble recipe by James Martin, he is a well-known English chef; the recipe called for plums, spices and wine. And what do you think – it’s the best crumble I’ve ever made and tried! Plums with spices sautéed in red wine remind me mulled wine, and it’s incredibly tasty! This crumble is very aromatic and delicious even without ice cream on top! I slightly adapted the recipe – added oats and chopped nuts, walnuts and/or pistachios is a nice crunchy addition here.Plum crumble

Best ever plum crumble

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients 
20g butter
7-8 dark plums, halved, stones removed
1 vanilla pod or 1 tsp vanilla extract
1 star anise
a pinch of fresh nutmeg
1 cinnamon stick
20ml water
60ml red wine
2-3 tbsp golden syrup (I used honey)
2-3 tbsp brown or raw sugar
Crumble topping
50g plain flour
30g oat flour or fine oats
2 tbsp demerara sugar
40g butter, softened
2-3 tbsp chopped pistachios or walnuts
To serve
vanilla ice cream
Preparation
  1. Preheat oven to 200C.
  2. Heat the butter in a pan over medium heat. Add the plums and fry for a few minutes.
  3. Add the split vanilla pod, star anise, nutmeg and cinnamon stick to the pan. Add the water, red wine, honey and sugar and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 5-6 minutes, until the plums break down to a thick sauce. Transfer plums with sauce to one or 2 individual baking dish.
  4. For the crumble topping, mix the flours and sugar together in a bowl. Rub in the butter with your fingers until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Mix in chopped nuts.
  5. Sprinkle the crumble over the plums and bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes, until golden-brown.
  6. Remove and allow to cool slightly before serving with ice-cream.
Enjoy!

Plum crumble-2