Super snacking spiced roasted chickpeas…

My vice is most definitely snacking and sometimes I do get tired of my trusty, sweet and salty popcorn to nibble while watching a movie! With this in mind I went hunting for new snack recipes! After cinnamon baked apples were a disaster these were my next test! Dried flavoured chickpeas! And they were really really tasty!

I took inspiration from this recipe, and slow roasted a full can of drained chickpeas in a 180C oven for about 1 hour and 20 minutes.

To begin a rinsed and dried the chickpeas on a tea towel.

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Next I placed them on a baking tray covered with baking parchment and popped them in the oven. They do take a long time to become fully crispy so this could be an option for the bottom shelf of the oven while you’re roasting or baking something else.

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When removed from the oven I popped them in a bowl with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and a mixture of BBQ seasoning, chilli powder, paprika and garlic. Toss the seasoning over the chickpeas and you’re onto a new snacking sensation! Enjoy!

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Middle Eastern Meal!

Good things come to those who wait and I’m sorry I didn’t post this sooner but as I mentioned a few weeks ago I made a middle eastern meal for some friends of mine who came to stay! As with any good dinner party you need to spend time with your friends and not all your time in the kitchen so I tried to stick to things I could make in advance and used a combination of homemade dishes and ready made goodies! I made a Tabouleh salad myself and cooked halloumi and marinated chicken. I also made some homemade bab ganoush, an aubergine dip from Lebanon. You can easily recreate this feast at home using shop bought dips and salads. I also used a falafel mix that I bought from Waitrose. It made about 10 falafel for £1.10! I hope you like the images and if you want any information on the dishes just let me know!

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Middle Eastern Meal…

As I might have mentioned before I used to live in Oman in the Middle East for most of my life. Now I’m back in the UK I miss my friends from there so much! We now all live at different corners of the UK and it’s hard for us to meet up but this weekend we are doing just that and I’m planning on cooking a middle eastern feast for us all! I had a search on the internet for some inspirational ideas. This is what I came up with but I will be sure to share pictures of the food I actually make with you next week!

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Chicken with Puy Lentils and Asparagus…

As I mentioned in an earlier post I got the Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals Cookbook for Christmas. I tried this recipe from it for the first time the other day and it was really tasty! I’ve included a few images from the cooking process!

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In this recipe the chicken is rubbed with salt, pepper and cayenne before being bashed thin and pan fried in a drizzle of olive oil with whole garlic cloves, pancetta and asparagus.

The chicken is served with puy lentils cooked with carrot, onion, spinach and yoghurt.

If I had to make a few comments about this recipe book I would say you can’t do the recipes in 15 minutes….unless you want to trash the kitchen. If your prepared to open cans and throw them on the floor or simply open a packet of chicken breasts and cook them with trimming and sinew or fat then it is possible but realistically people don’t really cook like that! This recipe book should probably be called ‘30 Minute Meals’ and ‘30 Minute Meals’ should probably be called ‘ 5 and Half Hour Meals’ but there you go! Despite that the book is still good with a wide range of recipes to try!

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Super Salmon Risotto…

Just after Christmas with plenty of food left to be used up in the fridge I made myself a speedy lunch time risotto using leftover smoked salmon! The dish worked really well and was very simple to make! I served it with a handful of fresh peppery rocket!

P1020248 To make this risotto I used the same method I previously used in other risotto recipe (which is frying garlic and onion in a splash of oil, adding the Arborio rice and slowly adding stock or white wine).

In addition I also added, oregano, smoked salmon, frozen peas and broccoli. I finished the risotto with seasoning, a knob of butter to make the risotto creamy and glossy and some grated parmesan to add richness!

The cooked smoked salmon worked really well and although I used vegetable stock you could also use fish stock and add other seafood if you like a stronger flavour!

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Broccoli, Pine Nut and Chilli Pasta…

On a cold Sunday night all I wanted for my dinner was something hot and delicious! I had a flick through Gino D’acampo’s pasta book and stumbled across this great dish. It took mere minutes to make and tasted amazing smothered in grated parmesan!

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All the ingredients you need are in the image below (apart from the pasta) and I’ll try to sum up the recipe in a few lines! First off you will need to boil the pasta of your choice until al dente in salted water and then drain.

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To make the rest of the dish, here are the steps!

1. Add 2 tbsp of olive oil per serving to a pan and heat (2tbsp for one person, 4 for 2 people etc).

2. Add to the pan sliced garlic (one clove per serving), pine nuts (1.5 tbsp per person) and finely sliced chilli. Add as much or as little chilli as you like! I don’t like too much! hehe. Then add your sliced broccoli pieces.

3. Cook those ingredients over a medium heat for about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.

4. Next add some dry white wine (about 75ml per serving) and cook out for a further 5-10 minutes until the broccoli is soft. Add the drained pasta to the mix and finish with fresh basil leaves and parmesan cheese!

Easy peasy and super tasty! The Gino D’Acampo pasta book is also amazingggg totally worth a purchase! Great Christmas present for anyone who likes Italian food!

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Pizza Bread (or ‘why haven’t I done this yet’…)

I have actually tried a homemade pizza bread once before but I’ve never made it myself! Seeing a picture of one on Pinterest brought back that memory and made me think again as to why I STILL haven’t tried it! Made using French bread or a crusty loaf simply add tomato paste, cheese and any toppings you like! Rocket, ham and mushrooms will be my first attempt I think! Pop in the oven and ‘voila’ Pizza Bread!

Here’s my top three from the web!

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