Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Morroccan chicken salad

Down here in the southern part of the country, Autumn (Fall) is upon us. So, using this recipe as inspiration, I made this lovely spicy Moroccan Chicken salad. Actually, if you follow the recipe word for word - it is a very nice salad, but I happened to have some chicken that needed to be used up, so effectively I substituted chicken for the chick peas here. I also made mine a bit spicier! Of course, if you would prefer, you can use a "pre-made" Moroccan seasoning. It won't have the same depth of flavour but if you need something quick for a weeknight meal, that is always an option. 

Monday was a public holiday here in Victoria so the week is flying by. I can't wait to get stuck into some serious cooking again this weekend! The tomato glut continues, so I will be pickling them this time. Guest reviewer Shirley has kindly provided me with a green pickled tomato recipe that has been passed down the generations so I will be giving that a try to use up some of them. Then it will be time to get the garden ready for winter planting! Can't wait to plant some root vegetables and new lots of greens. 

Enjoy the recipe folks - this is definitely something I'll be making again!

Moroccan Chicken Salad

1/2 butternut pumpkin, peeled, chopped into 2cm pieces
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 1 zucchini,diced
  • 2 chicken breasts, diced
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground allspice
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp dried chili flakes
  • 1/3 cup (80ml) olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups (375ml) vegetable stock, heated
  • Grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 250g cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 bunch mint, leaves picked
  • 1/2 bunch coriander, leaves picked
  • 2 tbs flaked almonds, toasted
  • 170g tub tzatziki

Preheat the oven to 200°C.
1. Lightly grease an oven roasting tray. 
2. In a large bowl, toss the pumpkin, carrot and zucchini with the chicken, spices and about 2 tablespoons oil, ensuring everything is evenly coated in the oil and spices.
3. Arrange in a single layer on the baking tray and roast for 20-25 minutes until the chicken is cooked evenly and the vegetables are golden and tender
4. Whisk together the lemon juice and zest with the remaining 2 tablespoons oil.
5. Stir the dressing into the salad. Gently toss the roasted vegetables, cherry tomatoes, onion, mint and coriander with the couscous.
6. Spoon the salad onto plates and sprinkle over the toasted almonds. Serve with a dollop of tzatziki.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Slow roasted tomato sauce

There is no end to the tomatoes. We've tried giving them away, every cooked meal has involved tomatoes somehow and  so now it is time to do some preserving. This year, I've decided to go with a slow roasted tomato sauce - it might have a better uptake in the household. Last year I made chutney, and whilst it was nice, I knew I could do a whole lot better with a sweeter sauce. 

So having a look over the internets for a lazy (I didn't particularly want to blanch, peel and seed all those tomatoes!) sauce I came across this from Cuizoo: slow roasted plum tomato sauce. So I took this as my inspiration and made up my own version...

Slow roasted tomato sauce

1 kg tomatoes, quartered
500g onions, cut up/sliced
8 cloves fresh garlic
2 tsp fresh oregano, leaves torn
2 tsp fresh basil. leaves torn
3 bay leaves
olive oil
salt and pepper, to taste
red wine vinegar

Preheat your oven to 150 degrees Celsius

1. Add your tomatoes, onions, garlic and herbs to a large roasting pan, and cover with olive oil
2. Roast for 4 hours and then cool
3. remove bay leaves, and blend till smooth
5. Blend till smooth, then pour into a large saucepan/pot
6. Sweeten to your taste with honey and red wine vinegar. 
7. Pour into sterilised jars (here's a refresher on how to do that here) and keep in the fridge. My lot made about 2 very large preserving jars worth. You can also reduce it a bot more if you prefer a thicker sauce. Of course, now I have to make some sausage rolls to dip in this yummy sauce!
Just before going into the oven....
You might also like:

Friday, March 9, 2012

I don't know how I find these things..

....on the internet BUT you have to check out the food photography on this site, Luxirare. I think the photography is amazing - I love the minimalistic backgrounds and the lighting is spot on! 

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

All quiet on the western front...

...but furiously working away behind the scenes. Repertoire Food is turning 3 (!) next month so I have finally bitten the bullet and bought some internet real estate. I am currently teaching myself how to build a website so will hopefully be up and running very shortly!