Friday, 22 September 2017

The Daily Snap - 22/09/17


Noodles. Lots and lots of dried noodles.

Rach Eats Lunch: Sweet Potato & Chickpea Pasta

Easy chickpea and roasted sweet potato pasta recipe

Today's recipe is a bit sweet, but without the sugar. Two things you'll know about me if you've been following me for a while: I eat a lot of chickpeas (they're nutritious, yes, and have no end of uses), and I love dipping into the roasted vegetable box in the fridge and using what I find. We love roasted veggies in our house. Is there anything better than eating half a roasted red onion with your Sunday lunch? I don't think there is, although I don't mind a bit of raw onion in my sandwich. I wouldn't eat a whole one though, not even if you paid me. That's just wrong, guys!

Anyways, for those days where you need an easy pasta recipe that isn't tomato-based (#basic), I have a bit of a winner for you. The sweet potato is tempered by the neutral flavour of the chickpeas and a touch of red onion and paprika to bring it all together. It's creamy, but there's no dairy. Magic. You'll want to eat the sauce with a spoon while you wait for the pasta to cook... You may also notice that I'm slowly getting over my fear of prepacked salad, oh, and I've bought a new plate. £1.75 in Sainsbury's. You're welcome!

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Sweet Potato & Chickpea Pasta
A sweet and creamy pasta salad.
  • 100g dried penne pasta
  • 1/2 sweet potato, cubed
  • 90g drained chickpeas
  • 1/4 diced raw red onion
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons light soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 30ml approx. boiling water
  • 1 teaspoon each ground salt and pepper
  • 1 large handful large handful lettuce and 1/2 chopped tomato to garnish
  • 15g grated cheddar cheese (optional)
Start off by peeling and cubing the sweet potato and adding it to a lined baking tray. Drizzle over a teaspoon of oil and coat the sweet potato in it. Pop it in the oven at 180℃ for 30-35 minutes, turning once until the sweet potato is soft and bright orange.Drain off the chickpeas and add to a blender, along with the roasted sweet potato and half of the chopped onion. Add in a dash of boiling water, the soy sauce, paprika, salt and pepper. Put the lid on and blend it into a thick, but smooth sauce. You may need more water to make it pliable. Feel free to add more salt and pepper to taste if you like.Transfer the sauce to a small saucepan - heat the sauce over a medium heat and stir constantly until piping hot, but do not boil the mixture.Boil up a second pan of water and add the pasta to it. Cook it until it is double in size and completely soft. Arrange the salad on the plate too.Drain the pasta, add the sauce and the remaining diced red onion and give it a good stir. Finally, add the pasta on top of the lettuce, season if desired, then serve immediately. Add a bit of grated cheese on top if you fancy. Devour.
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: Serves 1 - double up for each person eating

Well. I guess that's tonight's tea sorted then! What do you think? Would you give sweet potato pasta a try?

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

The Daily Snap - 20/09/17

Alright Jane?

Alright, Jane?

Rach Eats Lunch: Chickpea, Feta and Mushroom Calzone

Homemade mushroom feta and chickpea calzone recipe

(Oh, hey, pardon me a sec - my recipes are starting to get a bit posh around here. Check that recipe title out. Wow.) You've heard of Taco Tuesdays - it still needs to be more of a thing in the UK - so how about Pizza Wednesdays? If I'm absolutely honest, homemade pizza is lovely but the dough takes ages. So. Much. Waiting. Around. It's like waiting for me to finish getting ready (sorry, Mum!) In reality, you don't need much for pizza dough, it's just making sure you have the right ingredients in. Yeast, for example. I bought a small tub of yeast last year, which was great, however it involved popping it in a jug of lukewarm water, covering it with a tea towel and waiting for the yeast to froth up. See, look, more waiting! This time around, I've picked up a sachet of fast action yeast. It only cost 28p, which is a bargain for less frequent bread-making. To top it all off, this recipe requires absolutely no kneading, proving, or rising. Nicely done, guys. Nicely done.

But I'm not making your typical flat, thick crust pizza today - nope, I am going to up my game a bit and make a calzone. This is the one dish I have always fancied trying, and it's surprisingly simple. Think of a sausage roll or a cheese toastie, except it's a pizza. Folded over. And no, it's not the two-slices-of-leftover-pizza-squashed-together-in-a-sandwich-toaster thing I've seen online. (If you do try it, let me know. Send pics. Or send me some, more like.) For a topping, I've decided to be a fancy pants and pop my fave foods inside: good ol' chickpeas, feta cheese and mushrooms. They're not just my faves, though. I'm using up my leftovers. As always. I will never get over the something-something that sliced mushrooms add to a pizza, nor will I forget the extra flavour dimension of adding feta AND mature cheddar. Even more incredible is the pizza sauce: four simple ingredients, one tasty sauce. Woohoo! Filling-wise, you can pop whatever you like in it, I'm not going to pull you up on it! This dough makes enough for two. You can split one in half and freeze it ready for another day if you like, just don't forget to pop it in a box and label the date on it. I've clingfilmed the remaining half of the dough and it's sitting in the fridge as we speak. (Hope it doesn't expand and take over the world...) Ready to be surprised by how simple homemade calzone is?

Easy calzone recipe

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Chickpea, Feta and Mushroom Calzone
A truly delicious, easy to create calzone, perfect for family meals.
  • 190g plain flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 7g fast action yeast sachet
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 112ml warm water (half and half boiling and cold)
  • 50g tinned tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon garlic granules
  • 1 teaspoon salt and pepper, ground
  • 15g feta cheese
  • 15g grated cheddar cheese
  • 1 handful thinly sliced mushrooms
  • 1 tablespoon drained chickpeas
Preheat the oven to 190℃ and line a large baking tray with paper. Start off with the sauce - put the tinned tomatoes, garlic granules and salt and pepper in a blender - gently blend it tegether into a thick sauce.Add the flour, salt, yeast, oil and warm water to a bowl - put your mixer on high using a dough hook until a dough is formed. I used a few extra tablespoons of warm water to help it bind.Take the dough out. Pop it on a floured surface, or on baking paper or clingfilm if you're like me and want to avoid any mess. Split it into two portions. Roll the dough into a thin round circle.Next up, add your toppings. On one half of the dough circle, leaving about 2cm gap around the edges, put the tomato sauce on first, before adding the cheddar, crumbling over feta, and finally topping it with the sliced mushrooms and chickpeas. Don't overfill it!Fold the dough over the top of the toppings. Give the edges a pinch so that they stick together, and gently shape the edges into a crescent moon.Put the calzones on a baking tray and bake for roughly 15-17 minutes until golden and everything's boiling hot inside. You might see poke holes in the photos, that's where I had a look with my temperature gauge! Serve immediately with salad and wedges, if you like.
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: Two calzones

Oh my god - so glad I finally got to try calzone! You need to try this, I promise. Question: what's your favourite pizza topping? Tell me in the comments!

Simple delicious calzone recipe UK