Well the summer soccer season is now officially over – which reduces our soccer commitment to only 4 days per week! Yay.
Summer soccer didn’t end quite as well as the boys had hoped, with a disappointing loss in the grand final. So our beautiful boys, competitive spirits dashed, fought tears through the medal ceremony.
Thankfully we had a party planned for them afterwards. True to form, the boys had their runners-up medals safely stashed (not so disappointed they would risk losing them!), and were in the backyard knocking around a soccer ball within moments of arriving.
My contribution to the event was dips and nibblies, and I couldn’t resist making something pink. This dip is actually from my sister Salsa, and is truly delicious as well as healthy. I often make it to use in salad sandwiches for work/school day lunches.
- 450g can beets
- 1 sm clove fresh garlic
- 1 c Greek style yoghurt
- 1 T finely chopped fresh dil
Finely grate beets, and crush garlic. Place in medium bowl with yoghurt and dill and mix well. Refridgerate until slightly set. Serve with fresh chopped vegetables, chips, lavash bread or crackers.
I am always amazed at the volume of food that is consumed when I have people over. Especially when there are kids involved. It’s not a bad thing – I would feel inadequate if the entire mountain of food I presented wasn’t enthusiastically devoured, but … it does pay to have some fillers in there to start things off.
Dips are a great option. They go in and out of fashion, but the reality is, people love them, and the flavour and ingredient combinations are endless. This is one of those recipes that is more successful with kids if you don’t tell them what’s in it. I’m not sure why, but the poor old pea maintains its dreary reputation although I am sure none of the kids I know have been subjected to the over-boiled mushy nightmares of generations gone by.
This dip is lovely and fresh and is good with vegetables or crackers. I have served this one with crackers made from lavash and lebanese flat bread.
- 2 1/2 c frozen (or fresh) peas, cooked
- 2 T finely chopped fresh basil
- 1 t finely chopped fresh mint
- 1 T fresh lemon juice
- 1 T fresh lime juice
- 2 T macadamia oil
- 2/3 c sour cream
- 2/3 c Greek style yoghurt
Blend all ingredients in a food processor until smooth.
- 6 sheets of lavash bread or lebanese flat bread
- 2 T macadamia oil
- 1/2 t cumin
- 1/2 t paprika
- 1-2 t sea salt flakes
- 2 T sesame seeds
Preheat oven to 200C.
Mix oil with cumin and paprika. Brush over the bread. Cut bread into cracker sized pieces. Sprinkle with salt and sesame seeds.
Place on tray in oven and cook until crisp (approx 5 minutes). Be careful not to overlap the crackers on the tray, and keep an eye on them because they burn fast!
Cracker recipe courtesy of my friend Antoinette!
Some time ago my dad, Prof, challenged me to find a blog worthy recipe for kale. He loves kale. He raves about its health benefits and he grows a lot of it. It is one of the staple vegetables in his diet. He also knows that I haven’t been such an avid fan. I often find it is bitter and has a strong aftertaste, so I am sure he was snickering to himself and thinking I would fail! But, in accepting the challenge I set out to investigate what could be done with this rugged little green leaf.
The first thing I learned on my kale discovery adventure was that it isn’t readily available in the shops nearby, and when I do find it it is often a bit sad and tired. The second thing that I learned is that kale needs to cook for much longer than spinach – those leaves are pretty tough. The third thing that I learned is that when cooked in the right way, I can actually enjoy this healthy green vegetable. The recipe below is SO good, which means that I met the challenge and won – but Prof has forced me to change my views, so it’s a win for him too! Thanks Dad!
The recipe here was inspired by one I found on the mamacino blog: http://mamacino.wordpress.com/2012/08/27/hey-presto-kale-pesto-delicious-dip/ (lovely blog with some delicious recipes – worth a look).
- bunch of kale, washed, de-stemmed and lightly steamed
- 1/2 c fresh basil
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- juice of 1/2 small lemon
- 1/2 c roasted cashews
- 1/4 c grapeseed oil
- 1/4 c Parmesan cheese, grated
Place all ingredients except oil in a food processor and blend. Scrape the sides. Add the oil in a thin stream as you continue to blend until smooth. You can keep for up to a week in the fridge. It has the same versatile uses as a traditional basil pesto. It’s especially tasty in soup!
- 4 T kale pesto
- 1 c sour cream
- 1 c Greek style yoghurt
Mix all ingredients together. Serve with chopped raw vegetables, corn chips, or crisp breads. Shown served with Roasted Tomato and Capsicum Salsa (https://bakingbohemian.wordpress.com/2012/09/19/roasted-tomato-and-capsicum-salsa/)
Salsa is one of my favourite dips. It is a great spring time dip – so fresh and light. It is also fabulously versatile because you can use it as an accompaniment to so many dishes.
- 6 large tomatores
- 1 red capsicum
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 T finely diced onions
- 2 stalk celery finely diced
- 1 t cumin
- 1/2 c fresh coriander, chopped
- olive oil
Brush oven tray with oil and preheat oven to 200C. Chop tomatoes and capscums into quarters, and peel and slice the garlic. Cook until vegetables are soft. Chop tomatoes and capsicum into small chunks. Finely chop garlic.
Place 0nion and celery in large saucepan and saute in 1 T olive oil until cooked through. Reduce heat to low, and add cumin and enough water to keep ingredients from sticking to the pan. Add tomato mix to pan. Add coriander to the pan and cook until heated through. Remove from heat.
Once cool, serve with plain corn chips or chopped vegetables (cauliflower is especially good).