Posts tagged ‘Cook’

August 24, 2011

Recipe: Selection of easy-tasty and colorful dips!

 

If there`s one thing to know about The Wonderingchef..so moi, is that I like dipping! Ok so now its out there let me tell you why… cos it`s fun! I mean who doesn’t like to dip fresh bread or nachos into tasty and cool dips? Its perfect for movie night, bbq night, wine tasting night, party night, or just nights… Also never over think it, if you got a blender at home, and a few cans of stuff hidden in your kitchen there’s so many things a creative mind can do.

I took the photos a couple of months ago, as I’m working on a project only a few friends know of. I been saving the recipes and pictures, but to be honest with you, they are just too good to stay on a disk, and not be shared. So here they are hope you will enjoy them! The whole 3 dips and 1 salad should take not much more then an hour. If you only pick one, there’s one which literally takes 5 minutes to create!

Note: If you use yogurt, wherever in the world you are, there`s going to be plenty to chose from, however, I really advise you to buy good quality, THICK Greek or Turkish yogurt! Otherwise the dips will end up runny, and that’s not nice. In case there’s no available thick yogurt, press it trough a fine sieve, so it will get rid of excess water!

Be creative with the spices! Don`t have ginger? use coconut milk! Don`t have chili? Use pepper! and so on and on and on…you dip will be tasty anyway:) 

1st zucchini and yogurt salad, with lemon grass (serves 4)

2-3 small zucchinis, or  2 big ones, or 1 very big one

200ml of thick yogurt

handfull of lemon grass..shiffanade

3 cloves of garlic

salt, white pepper

1 onion finely chopped

3 spoons of olive oil.

Slice the zucchini into small-medium cubes, so they will stay chunky after frying. Heat a frying pan, add olive oil, onion and crushed garlic. Add zucchini and fry/brown all sides, until cooked in the middle.season.  Set aside to cool. When cold, mix it with yogurt, and lemon grass! (With mint, or Thai basil, or with some extra chili is fantastic!)

Instant beetroot dip

Here you can use fresh or canned beetroots as well. It doesn`t make any difference. Only the fresh beets you need to cook and peel of course. If you use canned beetroot, get rid of the brine..you don’t need that!

1 medium can of beetroot. or 2-3 fresh ones

3- 4 cloves of garlic

3 spoons of olive oil

handful of fresh thyme leafs

Blend all ingredients together! WOA…I told you it`s instant! (add a bit of honey, and rosemary for an extra twist!)

3: 5 minute mint-chili and yogurt dip!

200 ml of yogurt

handful of fresh mint

2 cloves of garlic

a bit of olive oil

chilies– depending how much you like them, or how strong are the ones you have. Here i really cant tell. I used one, of course i didnt use the seeds, and it was till nice and spicy!

bit of salt.

Blend mint, garlic, salt, and chili together. Most likely you will need to use some olive oil to help your blender. Don`t leave any chunks it should look like a pesto.

Mix with yogurt! (got some nice middle eastern spices at home? use them!)

4:  Roasted Carrot dip with honey, ginger, and corriander

3-4 carrots, thinly sliced

1 onion finely chopped

2 spoons of olive oil

1 spoon of honey

1 spoon of shredded fresh ginger

couple of fresh coriander leafs

Roast carrot on a frying pan, with olive oil, honey and onion. Make sure they are soft!

Blend all ingredients together while still warm!

So now! Dip the bread and enjoy!

September 26, 2010

Recipe: Grape in Grape

Well, well isn`t it September? Well, I know, it is almost October but, school has just started, leaves are becoming yellow and golden brown, of course there are wine festivals, and yes there are grapes. Black and white ones, small or bigger ones, sweet or a bit sour, they can be surprising by every bite. Grapes are good, that was always my motto, but let`s see what kind of recipes we can make out of this great fruit?

About 2 months ago I enrolled into this cooking contest, where every month there is a different theme, and they wait for your recipes/pictures etc, so the can put them on their website. I came up with 3 ideas, and this one, that you will be reading is the first. Pretty much it is almost like a traditional greek dolmades, but I made it a bit “grape-i”:) There are a few ingredients thou, so don`t be afraid, we still talking about an easy recipe, it only has a few steps that`s all.  Also the dolmades are so nice with some yoghurt dip, so instead of the usual tzatziki, I prefered to make a mint-shallot version, as for a little change.

Ingredients

Grape-Sage Risotto (3-4 people)

1 spoon of butter

1dl of white wine

1 small red onion

2 cloves of garlic

1 cup of arborio rise

1 cup veg stock

1-1- handful of white and black grapes – diced

1 handful of fresh sage

Make a risotto base using the ingredients, adding the sage and the grapes only at the end, and set aside to cool down. Season it as you like, I prefer white pepper and salt.


Mint-shallot yoghurt.

0,5 liters of good quality, thick greek or turkish yoghurt.

1-2 shallots depending on the size brunoise

Handful of fresh mint – shiffanade

1 teaspoon of white wine vinegar

1 clove of garlic brunoise

salt, pepper

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl, and keep in fridge.


With the grape leaves, if you don`t grow grapes at home, you can easily buy the leaves in brine at the local deli store, but if you can access some fresh grapes, it’s a 2 minute step to make them at home. You only need to blanch them in boiling salty water, for about 1 minute. Set aside to cool down. As quantity, I gave 3-4 dolmades per person, but of course it’s up to you how many you would like to make.


After that you only need to roll the risotto in the leaves, and store them in the brine mixed with some olive oil.  Keep in fridge up to 4-5 days, serve with the yoghurt, toasted baguette and some olives. Maybe some fresh grapes as well. Don`t forget it`s amazing with some dry white wine! Enjoy!

September 17, 2010

Pasta Made easy pt2: Spinach and Bacon Pasta

I guess I don`t have to repeat myself and of course I don`t say anything new, if I say: Pasta Is EASY! Of course sometimes we ran out of ideas, and just  cook up a fast tomato sauce as a topping (It is still an all time favourite). Anyway if you are just hungry, just look inside the fridge, and see what you got in there and you can easily come up, with a new gourmet pasta recipe.

I did the same thing a while ago. I had some already defrosted spinach leafs, left over from a Sunday Brunch poached egg maddness – recipe soon. And Some leftover bacon from a never made Cesar salad.  pretty much that’s all you need. If you got some creme and onion, you arte already better than me, as I was a bit short on necessary veg at home, still, the fried bacon was enough. Also it goes very well with the spinach.

ingredients (for 3-4 persons)

If accessible:

1 onion

1 clove of garlic

small spoon of butter

In my case

Half a bag of defrosted spinach leafs

Half a pack of bacon-sliced

2 handful of chosen pasta

Cook the Pasta. meanwhile, fry the bacon in a saucepan, add the spinach, season, and when ready, mix it with the pasta, serve it with some parmesan, and garlic bread! Enjoy!:)