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Cover: Quick cuisine

Recipes with black olives

17Sep 12

Wild Rice Salad with Mustard Vinaigrette

Wild Rice Salad with Mustard VinaigretteIf you love salads that are consistent enough to eat as a main course and have many different ingredients, then this Wild Rice Salad with Mustard Vinaigrette is for you! I invented it myself one day when a friend came round for lunch and I didn’t feel like cooking.

The second time I made it, I couldn’t remember all the exact ingredients I had used the first time, but that’s the great thing about it! You can use whatever ingredients you have available at the time, so it doesn’t always have to be the same. You can use any kind of hard or crumbly cheese, and any kind of fish. If you don’t like fish, use ham. If you’re not keen on capers, just leave them out or add something else you like.

I know sun-dried tomatoes aren’t the kind of thing we always have at home, so just use fresh tomatoes! And if you are feeling particularly lazy and can’t be bothered to make the vinaigrette, then just add olive oil, vinegar and salt. But I strongly recommend the mustard vinaigrette – it makes for a much tastier salad.

Apart from being a fun idea for a main meal at home, this salad is wonderful for picnics. It makes for a very complete, balanced and healthy dish, as it contains protein, carbohydrates and healthy fats. You could also try my rice salad with spinach and avocado. Very tasty!

Wild Rice Salad with Mustard Vinaigrette
Author: 
Recipe type: Main
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 

Serves: 2
 

If you love salads that are consistent enough to eat as a main course and have many different ingredients, then this Wild Rice Salad with Mustard Vinaigrette is for you!
Ingredients
  • FOR THE SALAD:
  • 200g mixed long grain and wild rice
  • ½ cucumber
  • 5 or 6 oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained
  • 20g cheddar cheese
  • 1 tbsp drained capers
  • 1 heaped tbsp pitted black olives
  • ½ small tin sweet corn
  • 5 or 6 canned anchovy fillets
  • 2 spring onions
  • FOR THE MUSTARD VINAIGRETTE:
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp red wine vinegar
  • Aprox. 6 tbsp virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt

Instructions
  1. Boil the rice, cool under cold water, drain and leave to cool some more.
  2. Cut the olives into quarters.
  3. Finely dice all the other ingredients, except the sweet corn and capers.
  4. Mix all the ingredients with the rice in a large bowl.
  5. To make the vinaigrette, use a fork or a whisk to mix the mustard, salt and vinegar in a small bowl.
  6. Add the olive oil little by little, while whisking (or stirring rapidly with your fork) continually.
  7. When all the oil has been added and you have a smooth emulsion, try it and adjust any ingredients if necessary.
  8. Mix the vinaigrette into the salad and serve.

 

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06Aug 12

Pasta Puttanesca

Pasta Puttanesca
If you like anchovies, or even if you don’t, I recommend trying this recipe. My flatmate says she doesn’t like them, but when I made Puttanesca Pasta, I didn’t tell her what was in it. She loved it! I think it’s because the strong flavour of the anchovies is softened by the onion and tomato and disguised a little by the garlic, chilli and basil. It’s a very flavourful sauce that I think deserves to be served with fresh pasta, which apart from being tastier, is also faster to cook.

Accompany with this no-egg caesar salad, which also uses an anchovy paste, a perfect complement to the pasta recipe.

The origins of Puttanesca sauce (sugo alla Puttanesca in Italian) are not certain, but many say it has something to do with “ladies of the night” because puttana is a colloquial word for prostitute. It’s said that prostitutes in Naples created this dish with readily available ingredients and that they used its fragrance to tempt customers into their brothels, offering them dinner and then “dessert”!

Pasta Puttanesca
Author: 
Recipe type: Main
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 

Serves: 2
 

Italian Puttanesca Pasta combines anchovies, capers, garlic, chilli and basil in tomato sauce.
Ingredients
  • 300g tinned sieved tomato (Passata)
  • 200g fresh pasta
  • 1 large clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 heaped tbsp capers
  • 6 tinned anchovy fillets, drained and chopped
  • 1 heaped tbsp finely chopped basil
  • 10 pitted black olives
  • 1 or 2 tsp sugar
  • 1 pinch of chilli powder
  • Olive oil
  • Salt

Instructions
  1. Fry the garlic in 1 tablespoon of olive oil for about 1 minute. Then add the onion and a pinch of salt and fry over a low-medium heat until it is soft and transparent.
  2. Add the sieved tomato and simmer for about 10 minutes.
  3. Cut the olives in halves or quarters, or leave whole if preferred.
  4. When the sauce has thickened to your preferred consistency, add the capers, anchovies, olives, basil and chilli powder and stir.
  5. Taste the sauce, add more chilli if you like it spicier and a little more sugar if you find it’s sour. Remove from heat.
  6. Cook the fresh pasta according to the instructions on the packet (usually no more than 3 minutes).
  7. Drain the pasta, toss with the sauce and serve.

 

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15Jun 12

Pasta with pesto, broccoli and Feta cheese

Pasta with Veg and PestoPesto is an all-time favourite of mine and one of my must-have sauces at home. There is both a green and red variety, but I prefer the green one because it is so versatile. Here is a dish of pasta with pesto, broccoli and Feta cheese that I make a lot – often in the morning before I rush to catch the bus to Uni!

A typical pesto is made by first placing garlic and pine nuts in a mortar and reducing it to a cream. After that, you add washed and dried basil leaves and grind it to a creamy consistency. Parmigiano-Reggiano and Pecorino cheeses are then added together with some olive oil. However, if you don’t want to go to all this trouble, you can find pre-made pesto in most supermarkets. The most common one is pesto alla genovese.

You may believe that pesto is only used as a sauce for pasta, but think again! These pesto cod and chips use it as a dressing on top of seafood. Play around with pesto, and you never know what new delights you might discover!

What we need:

  • 200g of tricolour pasta
  • 2 tablespoons of green pesto
  • 1 large red onion
  • 1 large red pepper
  • 1 dl of broccoli florets
  • A small tin of green beans
  • 10 black olives
  • 100g of Feta cheese
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil

Tip! If you want to make your life easier, you can even use frozen vegetables instead of fresh.

How to make it:

  1. Wash and chop the onion, pepper and broccoli into pieces.
  2. Pour 1 litre of water into a saucepan and bring it to the boil.
  3. Add the pasta and cook it according to instructions on the package.
  4. Pour the olive oil in a frying pan.
  5. Place the vegetables in the frying pan and let it all fry for a few minutes until the vegetables are soft.
  6. Add the green beans.
  7. Chop the olives into halves and add to the frying pan.
  8. Drain the pasta when ready.
  9. Add the pesto to the hot pasta and mix carefully.
  10. Add all the vegetables from the frying pan.
  11. Grate the Feta cheese over the pasta and stir once or twice.
  12. Serve hot or store it in a Tupperware for later use.

Time needed: 15 minutes
Serves: 2
Level: Easy

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26Mar 12

Grilled toast with feta cheese and cherry tomatoes

Greek Grilled Toasts

In honour of the versatility and history of Feta cheese, here is a recipe for Greek grilled toast with Feta cheese and cherry tomatoes.

Feta cheese is delicious on just about everything. It makes salads more interesting, such as in this healthy and original superfoods salad. I love the name “superfood” because to me, it means a food that is well-rounded and gives me all the nutrients and vitamins I need to get through the day. I think these toasts are superfood as well because it has elements from all the food groups.

Did you know that this Greek curd cheese is believed to have been made for thousands of years? Due to its proud heritage, the title “Feta cheese” has been copyrighted since 2002 so that only cheese made exclusively in Greece with sheep or goat’s milk has the right to bear the name within the European Union.

Try forming them into different shapes to give them an extra twist! How about cutting these toasts into small pizza slices? Or perhaps a Mickey Mouse head? Why not try them in the shape of a heart for your sweetheart? All you need for the shapes are cookie-cutters or a large glass, and some imagination. Serve and surprise your friends or partner with your ingenious toast shapes! They’ll love it!

What we need:

  • 8 slices of toast bread
  • 1/2 a teaspoon of butter on each
  • 16 cherry tomatoes
  • 8 black olives, pitted
  • 150g of Feta cheese
  • a few leaves of fresh basil or coriander leaves

How we make it:
1. Cut the bread into the shapes you want them (I am partial to the heart-shaped ones, but I made the round ones that you see in the picture for simplicity’s sake. To do so, I used a large glass to cut around the bread).
2. Butter the bread that you are going to use.
3. Chop the tomatoes into small pieces.
4. Chop the olives into fine pieces.
5. Mix the tomatoes and olives and spread them on the toast.
6. Grate the Feta cheese and sprinkle over the toast.
7. Place some leaves of fresh basil on each.
8. Grill in the middle of the oven for 8-10 minutes.
9. Serve with an iceberg and tomato salad.

Serves: 2
Time needed: 20 minutes
Level: Easy

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