Home Food & Recipes Summer Recipes – 2010

Summer Recipes – 2010

by Patrick

hummusBy Liz Nolan

There is nothing nicer than sharing a meal with family and friends on a warm summers day, Al Fresco!

A Mezze plate is ideal, where you have several cold dips and salads served with some good bread, where everyone can pick and choose and everything can be prepared in advance so that you get to relax with a glass of wine.

I have chosen two roast vegetable salads which, with chickpeas or beans and lentils adding some protein, form a substantial meal served with a leafy green salad, hummus and delicious 5 seed flat breads made with spelt flour.

MEDITERRANEAN ROAST VEGETABLES AND CHICKPEA SALAD WITH CREAMY ROAST GARLIC DRESSING

Ingredients

1 tin of chickpeas
1 aubergine chopped into small cubes
½ red, orange and yellow pepper chopped into small pieces
1 medium red onion chopped small
1 large courgette chopped into small cubes
8 cherry tomatoes cut in half
6 to 8 sun dried tomatoes finely sliced
8 good size garlic cloves
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp salt
few grinds of black pepper
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
approx 10 black olives
2 oz Feta cheese chopped into cubes (optional)

Directions

Put all the vegetables except the tomatoes into a large roasting tin so they are in one layer. Pour on the olive oil. Sprinkle on the oregano, salt and pepper and mix to coat.

Choose 8 good size garlic cloves. Leave on their outer papery covering and slice off the bottom of each clove. Wrap them loosely in tin foil and put next to the vegetables to roast.

Roast in the oven on gas mark 5 or 180 electric for 30 minutes or until soft.

Remove the veg and the garlic from the oven and leave to cool.

Put the veg into a bowl and stir in the drained chickpeas and the sun dried tomatoes.

DRESSING

8 roasted cloves of garlic
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp cider vinegar
1 tsp smooth dijon mustard
1 tsp honey

Directions

Measure out the ingredients into a small bowl.

When the garlic is cool enough to handle squeeze each clove from its papery cover into the dressing ingredients. Whizz with a hand blender until thick and creamy.

Stir the dressing into the vegetables and chickpeas.

In a serving bowl, arrange some mixed lettuce leaves and spoon over the roast vegetable mixture.

Scatter with the halved cherry tomatoes, feta cheese (if using), olives and some chopped parsley.

Serve with the hummus and 5 seed flat breads.

BUTTERNUT SQUASH AND PUY LENTIL SALAD WITH FETA CHEESE IN BALSAMIC DRESSING

Butternut squash

1 butternut squash
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp tamari

Directions

Cut the squash just above the wider bulb or bottom part and leave aside.

Stand the upper part on a chopping board and peel the skin off using a sharp knife.

Cut across into 1 inch thick rounds and cut each round into 1 inch cubes.

Mix the oil and tamari together in a small bowl. Toss the cubes of squash in the mix and put onto a baking tray and into the oven gas mark 6 or 200 electric for 15 minutes until just tender.

Then leave to cool.

Puy Lentils

4 oz puy lentils
8 fl oz water
1 clove garlic crushed
1 tsp dried thyme
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper

Directions

Rinse the lentils under a tap in a sieve. Put into a lidded saucepan with the other ingredients. Bring to the boil and then simmer for 20 minutes until just soft.

Season with some salt and pepper and leave to cool.

DRESSING

4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 tsp tamari
1 tsp honey

Directions

Whisk together the dressing ingredients in a large bowl. When the squash and lentils are cool, mix gently together with the dressing.

In a serving dish, line the bottom with rocket and pile on the squash and lentil mix. Scatter with feta cheese and toasted seeds and serve.

LEMONY HUMMUS

Ingredients

1 tin of chickpeas drained (but reserve 2 tbsp of the water) – use organic if possible and in unsalted water or 8 oz cooked chickpeas
Juice and zest of 1 lemon
1 garlic clove chopped roughly
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp tahini light or dark
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp chickpea water
Handful of chopped coriander leaves or parsley or both

Directions

Put all the ingredients except coriander or parsley in a food processor and process until smooth, or mash the chickpeas with a potato masher, crush the garlic and add, stir in the oil, tahini, lemon juice and zest, salt and reserved chickpea water and mix well.

Spoon into a serving dish and sprinkle with the coriander or parsley.

Hummus is a versatile dish. Use it as a starter with crudités – sticks of carrots, celery and cucumber, or fill a pita bread with hummus and salad for lunch. It also serves as a topping for vegetables or curry. Try a spoonful in soups. Vary the consistency – for a stiffer mix omit the chickpea water or add more for a thinner sauce like consistency.

Nutritional Information

Chickpeas are a great source of protein. They contain important phytoestrogens (plant-like hormones), which help to balance our own oestrogen. This is especially important around menopause, helping to protect against osteoporosis when oestrogen levels decline.

Tahini is made from crushed sesame seeds and is an excellent form of calcium and fibre. It comes in 2 types – light, which is hulled, and dark, which is unhulled. I prefer to use the dark tahini in this recipe as it adds extra flavour and nutrients.

Olive oil is good for the heart and helps to lower cholesterol.

Lemons contain excellent amounts of vitamin C and are an alkaline not acidic fruit. The zest contains limonene (a potent antioxidant to protect against cancer causing compounds) and increases the efficiency of the liver.

Garlic is anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-microbial. It helps lower cholesterol and is excellent for the liver.

FIVE SEED SPELT AND OAT FLATBREADS

Ingredients

10 oz wholemeal spelt flour
2 oz porridge oats
1 oz each of pumpkin, sunflower, sesame and flaxseed seeds
1 oz quinoa
1 tsp dried easy blend yeast
1 tsp salt
1 tsp honey
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
9/10 fl oz warm water

Directions

Turn on the oven to its lowest setting – gas mark 1 or 50 electric.

Put all the dry ingredients into a large bowl.

Make a well in the centre and add the oil and honey.

Heat the water – it must be warm enough for the yeast to work but if it is too hot it will kill the yeast.

Pour in the water and mix – start with 9 fl oz and if it isn’t enough add the rest – it needs to be a little sticky but not too wet to handle.

Turn out onto a floured board or surface, and with floury hands shape into a log and divide into 8 pieces.

Shape each piece into an oval about 1 inch thick.

Place on a floured baking tray.

Place in the middle of the oven and leave for 20/25 mins to rise a little.

Turn up the heat to gas mark 6 or 200 electric and bake for 20 mins – until lightly browned.

Place on a cooling rack and when cold slice open and use with the hummus, salads, soups or anything you like!

These freeze well.

5 SEED SPELT AND OAT LOAF

Directions

The same amount of mixture also makes a 2 lb loaf but use the full 10 fl oz water to make a sticky dough.

Oil a 2 lb loaf tin and sprinkle sesame seeds on the bottom – it looks nice and stops the loaf sticking to the bottom.

Spoon in the dough and press down to level.

Wet the top with a little water and sprinkle some more sesame seeds on the top and press them down lightly.

Leave to rise to the top of the tin the same way as the flatbreads for approx 45 minutes. Turn up the heat to 200 electric or gas mark 6 and bake for 40 minutes until nicely browned.

Leave to cool in the tin for 5 minutes and then turn out onto a cooling rack.


Liz Nolan is a Nutritional Therapist based in Moycullen and Health and Herbs, Sea Rd, Galway. For more information on Vegetarian Wholefood Cookery Classes, Zest4life Nutrition and Weight Loss Programmes or Nutritional Consultations, please ring 0868099604 or email liz.leagaun@gmail.com or visit www.wholefoodmatters.com

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