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Cover: Quick cuisine

Recipes with red pepper

11Jul 12

Fajitas with feta cheese and peppers

Fajitas with feta cheese and peppersThe London Olympics are fast approaching, and so are my exams. Instead of sitting like an owl in my room studying, I often prefer to sit in a park with my books, weather permitting. I also prefer to watch the Olympic Games on one of the big screens around town, as I like being around people and sharing in the excitement and nerves.

Spending so much time away from home however, will without doubt make me hungry at some point. As I’m sure you already know, living in London is expensive, and one single sandwich can cost around five pounds or even more. For this reason, I try to bring food out with me in a lunch box and save my money for something more fun at a different time, or for a pint in the park. Bringing food with you from home need not be boring – it can be just as tasty as storebought food – and you will know exactly what went in it!

Here is a great recipe for a luxurious fajita sandwich that you can take with you in a lunch box – just cut off the ends and it will taste and look like a deli-made dish! (Also try these cheddar cheese and courgette quesadillas.)

 

Fajitas with feta cheese, pesto and fried peppers
Author: 
Recipe type: Appetiser
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2
 
Here is a great recipe for a luxurious fajita sandwich that you can take with you in a lunch box
Ingredients
  • 4 Fajita wraps
  • 150g feta cheese
  • 2 tabespoons of pesto
  • 1 red pepper
  • 1 red onion
  • 1 yellow pepper
  • 2 pinches of pepper
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • ½ a courgette
Instructions
  1. Wash and cut the peppers, onion and courgette into thin slices or cubes.
  2. Fry them quickly until soft in the oil in a frying pan.
  3. Preheat the fajitas if they are to be eaten straight away.
  4. Put the Feta cheese in a bowl and with a fork mash it until soft.
  5. Add the pesto and mix carefully until a soft cheese spread forms.
  6. Spread the cheese-pesto mix (about one tablespoon on each fajita) onto the fajitas.
  7. When the vegetables are soft, spread them onto the fajitas and sprinkle the pepper over.
  8. Roll into hard rolls and cut away the ends.
  9. Enjoy in the outdoors with a beer and good company!

 

 

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26Jun 12

Japanese noodles with bell peppers and beef

Japanese noodles with bell peppers and beef
Noodles are always super easy to make – it takes virtually no time at all to place them in boiling water and, voila! 5 minutes later they are ready. The tricky part is to make the noodles tasty – it depends on what you put in the dish. With a noodle dish, the good thing is that, much like pasta, you can make a nice dish out of what you happen to have at home that day. If you have salmon steaks left over from yesterday’s dinner in the fridge, then cut it into pieces and add to this dish.

I happened to have peppers and mushrooms in my fridge. Less glamorous than salmon, but still tasty. Here is a dish of noodles with teriyaki sauce in which I have added apple pieces for a little more interesting flavour and red peppers and mushrooms for their scrumptiousness and for being healthy. I try to always keep the “five-a-day” in mind!

This is a recipe I often make when I come home late in the evening and just want to flop in front of the telly with a glass of white wine. I hope you enjoy it! (I also recommend this duck fillet stir fry with noodles.)

Japanese noodles with bell peppers and beef
Author: 
Recipe type: Main
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2
 
Noodles with teriyaki sauce and apple pieces for a unique flavour
Ingredients
  • 300g egg noodles
  • 150g beef, chopped into small pieces
  • 1 small red pepper
  • 1 small yellow pepper
  • 6 big mushrooms
  • 2-3 tablespoons of Teriyaki sauce
  • 2-3 tablespoons of Japanese soy sauce
  • ½ an apple
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
Instructions
  1. Heat up the oil in a frying pan.
  2. Wash and cut the red and yellow peppers as well as the mushrooms into slices. Place in a frying pan in the oil.
  3. Peel the apple and cut it into small pieces. Add it to the frying pan.
  4. Let them all fry together until soft.
  5. Meanwhile, boil water in a saucepan and add the noodles. The water should cover the noodles. Let it simmer for 5 minutes or until ready.
  6. Drain the water from the noodles and add the noodles to the frying pan and lower the heat.
  7. In a separate frying pan, cook the beef strips until cooked throughout. When done, add this beef to the veggie and noodle mix, drizzling over the teriyaki and soy sauces.
  8. Serve immediately.

 

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22Jun 12

Oven-fried vegetables with tuna steak and curry sauce

Oven-fried vegetables with tuna steak and curry sauceOne brilliant way to get your 5 servings of veggies a day is to chop up several vegetables and oven-fry them in some oil, sprinkled with salt and thyme. This is what I have done in this dish of Oven-fried vegetables with tuna steak and curry sauce. My personal preference is tuna, but you can use salmon or any other fish steak that you prefer.

I have used mushrooms, carrots, red onion, red pepper and potatoes with a curry sauce based on natural yoghurt. So, although you have to do some peeling and chopping, once it is in the oven, you can go about your business for around half an hour until it’s time to fry the tuna steak and mix together the sauce, which is done in less than 5 minutes.

Fish and veggies are a classic healthy combination. Try this recipe for tuna steaks with roast peppers. You won’t be disappointed!

Serve the tuna and veggies on a bed of ruccola leaves or as it is. By doing so, you will have reached your goal of getting five vegetables a day, and in such an easy and tasty way!

What we need:

  • 180g tuna steak
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 red onion
  • 1 small red pepper
  • 4 big mushrooms
  • 2 meduim-sized potatoes
  • 150g of natural cooking yoghurt
  • 1/2 – 1 tablespoon of curry powder (according to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon of honey
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 2 pinches of salt
  • 2 pinches of thyme

How to make it:
1. Wash and peel all the vegetables. Cut them into chunks.
2. Place them on an oven tray in some of the oil and pour some of the oil over them. Sprinkle the salt and thyme over them.
3. Place in the middle of the oven at 250 degrees. Leave for 30 – 40 minutes or until ready.
4. 10 minutes before the vegetables are ready, take out the tuna steaks and fry them in a frying pan until golden brown.
5. Pour the yoghurt into a small bowl and add the curry powder and honey. Mix carefully.
6. When the vegetables are ready, place them on a plate on a bed of ruccola salad and serve the fish with a dollop of yoghurt sauce.

Enjoy!

Serves: 2
Time needed: 30-40 minutes
Level: Easy

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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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12Jun 12

Japanese style fried rice with tofu

Japanese style fried rice with tofuContinuing my love affair with Asian cuisine, the time has come to try a dish with tofu. Tofu is made by coagulating soy milk and then pressing the resulting curds into soft white blocks that is then used in cooking, often as a meat substitute. (Another example of an Asian recipe using tofu is this recipe for Vietnamese spring rolls.)

Tofu can be used both in savoury and sweet dishes and is low in fat, high in protein, and with a low calorie count, it is excellent for vegetarians or for those of you on a calorie-restrictive diet. I have added oyster sauce and ginger to this dish of Japanese style fried rice with tofu for that scrumptious Japanese taste that I never get tired of.

Tofu is thought to have originated in ancient China, and techniques for its production and preparation eventually spread to many other parts of Asia. Today, many different varieties, such as fresh, fried, marinated, firm or soft tofu are eaten all over East Asia, and its use has spread to the west as well, probably as a result of the rise in vegetarianism in the 20th century.

What we need:

  • 100g jasmine rice
  • 1 red pepper
  • 1 red onion
  • 3 large mushrooms
  • 2 teaspoons of rapeseed oil
  • 125g of tofu
  • 1 teaspoon freshly chopped ginger
  • 4 teaspoons of Japanese soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons of oyster sauce
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon of sesame seeds (optional)

How to make it:

1. Boil the rice according to the instructions on the package.
2. Wash and cut up all the vegetables into thin slices.
3. Fry the vegetables in the oil in a frying pan.
4. When the rice is ready, pour it into the frying pan, mix and let it all fry together for a few minutes.
5. Cut the tofu into squares and put it in the frying pan.
6. Add the ginger, garlic, soy sauce and the oyster sauce and mix carefully. Sprinkle over some sesame seeds if desired.

Enjoy!

Serves: 2
Time needed: 20 minutes
Level: Easy

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04Jun 12

Rice with chicken, fried vegetables and mango chutney

Rice with mango chutney and fried vegetables
One food item that I always try to have in the fridge is mango chutney. It is really versatile; it can be an accompaniment, a side dish sauce, an actual sauce in a stir-fry or  a topping just to add an extra flavour to something. I usually use it to sweeten something that might be too spicy on its own. It is good with strong cheeses too; try it for yourself – only your imagination sets the limit! (Also sample this pear and mango chutney.)

Chutney is a South Asian condiment, and there are many different kinds. They can be made from virtually any vegetable or fruit, herbs, spices or a combination of them. Often it is fruit, vinegar, and sugar cooked down to a reduction, such as in the case of mango chutney. Chutneys are usually sweet or hot; and both usually contain various spices, including chilli, but are set apart by their main flavour, such as mango or tomato.

If you have a little more time and energy than me, it is reasonably easy to make mango chutney at home, but I just bought a ready-made one. Here is a really simple stir-fry dish which is put together within minutes. I hope you enjoy it!

Rice with mango chutney and fried vegetables
Author: 
Recipe type: Main
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2
 
a really simple stir-fry dish topped with mango chutney
Ingredients
  • 150g rice
  • 1 red onion
  • 1 red pepper
  • 1 carrot
  • 150g frozen veggie mix with broccoli, green beans and little corn cobs
  • 100g chicken breast, boneless, chopped into fine slices
  • 2 -3 tablespoons of mango chutney
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
Instructions
  1. Wash and boil the rice according to the instructions on the package.
  2. Sautée the chicken for 10 to 15 minutes on a medium heat until cooked throughout. Set aside.
  3. Peel the onion and carrot and chop them into thin slices.
  4. Wash the pepper and chop it into chunks.
  5. Fry the onion, carrot and red pepper in a frying pan in the olive oil.
  6. Meanwhile, thaw and cook the frozen veggies, according to packet instructions.
  7. When all the vegetables are soft, mix them together with the chicken strips and add the mango chutney as well. Stir all together and let the chutney become more fluid and sauce-like.
  8. When the rice is ready, scoop a bit out on a place next to the chicken/veggie mix. Add another spoonful of chutney to the rice.
  9. Serve immediately.

 

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18Apr 12

Chicken fajitas with red onion and guacamole

Chicken FajitasI love Mexican food for its spiciness and simplicity of the dishes. The typical foods such as spicy tortillas, nachos, quesadillas, and fajitas all are really filling and use combinations of flavours that I can´t get enough of! Plus, in my opinion, they are quite easy to throw together for a hearty meal.

Chicken fajitas with red onion and guacamole is a dish that I make at least twice a week because it is so yummy and simple to make. Fajitas make perfect student food because they are easy like a sandwich but with proper meal ingredients.

I usually cosy up with these fajitas and my favourite TV series after a full day at Uni. Although, since I stuff them so full, I have to be careful not to let all the ingredients spill out onto the couch. Regardless, I love this dish. All I can say is: Viva Mexico!

What we need:

  • 1 large chicken breast
  • 1 red pepper
  • 1 green pepper
  • 1 large red onion
  • 6 Mexican tortillas
  • 100g of grated cheddar cheese
  • 2 tablespoons of spicy red Mexican sauce
  • 200ml of guacamole
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • Herbs: garlic, ginger, pepper and cayenne pepper (a pinch of each)

How to make it:

  1. Chop the chicken breast into long slices.
  2. Place them in the oil in a frying pan and fry until cooked and sprinkle the herbs over it.  Place in a bowl for later.
  3. Chop the peppers and onion and fry them in the frying pan.
  4. Now, put the chicken back in the pan together with the peppers and onion. Add the Mexican sauce to taste, depending on how spicy you want it.
  5. Preheat the tortillas in the oven or microwave.
  6. Spread a tablespoon of guacamole on a tortilla and add some of the chicken and pepper mixture.
  7. Sprinkle some of the grated cheese on top according to taste.
  8. Roll the tortilla into a roll and eat with your fingers or a knife and fork.

Enjoy!!

Time: 20 minutes

Serves: 2

Level: easy

You can either buy ready-made guacamole or make it yourself. Try this spicy guacamole recipe.

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