Fancy Pants Coleslaw

If you are of a certain age in Australia, you grew up with Coleslaw, a creamy dressed salad of shredded cabbage. Well, Ottolenghi has taken Coleslaw to the next level, of course he has, with this Fancy Coleslaw. It shreds carrots, fennel, cabbage, red capsicum and radicchio for a very special salad.

After all of that shredding and chopping, you’ll have a huge bowlful of fresh and refreshing vegetables – the ideal antidote to all the fats, carbs and general debauchery of the holiday season. It is a healthy and nourishing salad, but also over-the-top delicious.

The creamy dressing for this salad is made with mayo and yoghurt. NOTE that I make an Eggless Mayo which is already mustardy and sweet, so I adjust Ottolenghi’s dressing accordingly (less or no extra mustard and only a little honey).

It is Ottolenghi day on the blog – one of two days per month where we publish all the latest round of posts featuring recipes we have tried in our project of cooking from Ottolenghi books – currently we are cooking from Plenty More, but not ignoring his other books completely.

Similar recipes include Waldorf Salad, Wombok and Radish Salad, and Chilli Cabbage.

Browse all of our Cabbage Salads, and all of our Salads. Our Ottolenghi dishes are here. Or browse our Mid Summer dishes.

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Celery Salad with Sour Grapes and Burrata

They say that Burrata is the best thing since sliced bread. And certainly it is very very good. A delicious mozzarella shell filled with thick cream. Has your mind gone to heaven? Indeed. It is simply the dreamiest. Creamy, luscious – burrata is Italian for butter, if that gives you any clues on how beautiful it can be.

Burrata is quite difficult to find here, in our little outback town of Adelaide. Not so in other cities, where it perches on the shelves of every supermarket. I had to search hard to find it within reasonable driving distance of my home. It took some time – distributors and cheese makers were not willing to help – I contacted several – but persistence paid and I found a reliable source not far from my work. That is Adelaide for you.

One of the great things about Burrata is that it is perfect for replacing coddled or poached eggs in salads. Thus for those who, like me, avoid cooking with eggs, the creaminess of the interior with the soft mozzarella coating brings that something that soft cooked eggs give to salads and baked dishes.

Celery salads are so rare, but I love one particular recipe, it is my favourite use of celery. I have modified it here to include the burrata. I hope you enjoy it. The origin is an Ottolenghi salad but the recipe keeps morphing into a dish that is appearing more and more often on our table.

Oh, and the other ingredient that is introduced in this salad, is Sour Grapes. Yes, I know, you all know those who are always full of sour grapes. But, it is also an exciting ingredient. Preserved sour grapes can be found in jars in Middle Eastern and Afghani groceries. They taste sour and briney, and a little like capers and caper berries. They are great in salads and in dishes where a sour taste is called for to balance other flavours. Pick some up today (or use capers in place of the grapes).

Similar recipes include Purslane Salad with Herbs and Burrata, Celery Yoghurt Salad, Nashi Pear and Celery Salad, and some Simple Celery Salads.

Browse our Celery Salads and all of our Celery dishes. Our Burrata dishes are here.  Or explore our Mid Summer dishes.

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Masoor Gram Dal with Green Peppers | Whole Red Lentil Dal

I usually turn to mung beans when I feel like a bit of comfort and nourishment, but today it is whole red lentils, masoor gram. This recipe is very simple, very easy, very home-cooking style, and very delicious. It has the taste of coriander and cinnamon, and has green capsicums added for additional flavour and texture. This is uncommon, but not unusual, and we love the taste and texture.

Similar recipes include Masoor Dal with Green Chillies, Masoor Sprouts Rice, and Daikon Dal.

Browse all of our Dals and all of our Masoor recipes. All of our Indian recipes are here, and our Indian Essentials are here. Or explore our Mid Summer dishes.

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Roast Capsicum Sauce or Salad Dressing

A salad dressing in a whizz – and much more…

So simple, how have I never thought of this before? With a surfeit of roasted peppers, due to roasting them on the BBQ after a Sunday lunch, I whizzed them into a perfect salad dressing.

The puree can also be used as a sauce – use with halloumi, for example, or some lentil balls. Drizzle over steamed or roasted vegetables. Mix with stir fried greens. Drizzle a little in wraps and sandwiches, or use it thick as a spread. It could be a dip. Mix with yoghurt for a wonderful sauce, dip or dressing. Use as a pasta sauce. Use as a base for a cold soup. Use for a dressing on a cold pasta salad. It is a pure delight!

Similar dishes include Creamy Salad Dressing, without Eggs, Grilled Pepper and Apple Relish, Sweet Onion Salad with Roasted Red Peppers, and Grilled Sweet Peppers and Eggplant Salad.

Have a look at our other Salad Dressings and Sauces. Or simple explore our Salads. You will enjoy our Late Spring recipes too.

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Sweet Pepper Salad | Roasted Red Capsicum Salad

The BBQ is lit to make a quick lunch, so afterwards I roast some red capsicums while we eat. These will make a super salad to go with dinner. There is definitely something about roasted capsicums, skin removed, flesh soft. It evokes summer nights with its colour and utter deliciousness.

This recipe is a quick version of the delicious Peperoni in Padella.

Similar recipes include Sweet Onions with Roasted Peppers, Roasted Red Pepper with Mozzarella and White Beans, and Sweet Red Pepper Salads.

Browse more of our salads and explore our Capsicum recipes. Or check out our BBQ recipes. Alternatively, explore our Mid Spring recipes.

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Char Grilled Banana Chillies Stuffed with Tomatoes and Spices | Bharwan Mirch

Perfect for a light lunch.

While this dish can be cooked on the stove top or in the oven, it is the perfect dish for a weekend BBQ. Served with yoghurt and flatbread, it is a perfect light weekend lunch.

Use either hot or mild banana chillies. Hot Banana chillies contrast well with the more mild filling. Mild Banana chillies have a mild sweet flavour, despite their chilli-related name. They are not at all hot or spicy. And we temper the heat of the spices in the stuffing by using warming spices and only a little chilli, adjusted to your taste.

Bharwan means stuffed in Hindi. The stuffing is made from chickpea flour and spices, moistened with tomatoes. You can basically add any ingredient of your choice into the stuffing. The combination of the banana chillies and mild tangy stuffing is quite flavoursome and this dish makes a great light lunch or side dish. It is a recipe from Rajasthan in India.

Similar recipes include Stuffed Okra with Onions and Spices, Stuffed Mushrooms, and Tomatoes Stuffed with Rice.

Feel free to explore our Capsicum recipes, and our Indian recipes. Our Indian Essentials are here, and Late Spring recipes can be explored here.

Continue reading “Char Grilled Banana Chillies Stuffed with Tomatoes and Spices | Bharwan Mirch”

Ousback’s Grilled Pepper and Apple Relish / Chutney

I am not sure where I first came across Ousback’s recipe — he was very popular with Vogue Entertainment Magazine around the mid 1990, so perhaps it was there. Anders Ousback was well known as a lover of food and wine, and this relish of his was also well known and loved. He was influential in the Sydney food scene, and influenced many chefs and restaurant owners. This recipe of his has stood the test of time, and is as wonderful today as it was back then.

There were several variations of the Grilled Pepper Relish. The one below is the one that I love because of its freshness and the wonderful taste of the spices it includes.

I am sure the recipe that Anders used has provenance. You can see the origins in Elizabeth David’s Red Pepper Relish. And there are infinite purees and pastes of roasted red peppers, such as  Serbian Ajvar, an Eggplant and Roasted Red Pepper Relish.

Similar recipes include Harissa, Roasted Red Pepper Sauces, and Red Pepper, Eggplant and Tomato Pasta Sauce. Or try Fennel and Lemon Chutney, and Char Grilled Banana Chillies Stuffed with Tomatoes and Spices.

You might also liked to browse our Preserves recipes and our Capsicum recipes. Our Apple dishes are here. Or explore our Late Spring recipes.

This recipe is one of the vegetarian recipes from our first blog which was in existence from 1995 – 2006.  You can find other recipes from that blog in our Retro Recipes series.

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Sweet Onion Salad with Roasted Red Peppers

I am on a mission – each day in the warmer months, I make a salad which we take to have with our lunches, or eat at home if we are home, and leftovers are used for snacks or with the evening meal.

The salads vary from day to day, and I get inspiration from all sorts of places. As I have mentioned before, I do love Bittman’s 101 salads, and am gradually working my way through the vegetarian ones. Others can often be adapted, leaving out or substituting the non-vegetarian ingredients. This is my second Summer using his beauties, and I am probably about half way through.

Today’s salad is an onion salad, with some roasted peppers. It is simple, but glorious on this 36C day (as I am writing this), and at those sorts of temperatures, all you want is simple. To make the salad, sometimes I have charred, roasted eggplant and capsicums that were cooked on the BBQ, and other times I slice the capsicums lengthwise into straight pieces which I grill on a grill pan on the stove. That is what I have done today, as I used the fully roasted ones to make Harissa.

Try some other Bittman Salads. There is a Glorious Five Bean Salad, Wombok and Radish Salad with Peanut Dressing, and Tomato and Strawberry Salad with Basil and Balsamic.

Or explore other Onion Salads. Try Sweet Onion Salad with Coriander Spice, the Cucumber and Red Onion Salad with Mustard, our Grilled Mushroom and Red Onion Salad, the beautiful Caramelised Onions and Greens Salad, and Indian Kachumber.

You might also like to try Roasted Sweet Pepper Salad.

You can browse all of our Salad recipes here, all of our Bittman Salads, and our Onion dishes. Or simply take the time to explore our easy Mid Summer dishes.

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Aubergines Fourrées | Baked Eggplant Stuffed with Cheese and Tomatoes

You will really enjoy this recipe. Softened eggplants are slit and fanned, and its slices interwoven with cheese, tomatoes and peppers. They are then baked on a bed of the sweetest caramelised onions, and the cheese melts. If, like me, you use mozzarella, it oozes everywhere! Cheesey Eggplants – who can resist?

If you use a cheese that holds its shape during baking it won’t form a bed of oozy cheese but rather stay in the eggplant, but we love this oozing aspect of the dish. It is perfect for Late Autumn.

It’s a French recipe, so I suggest some French wine and a green salad, for a light lunch eaten outside on a gorgeous Autumn day sitting under a gorgeously coloured tree raining leaves. Do enjoy!

Are you looking for similar recipes? Try Pasta Bake with Cabbage and Cheese, Baked Eggplant Steaks, and Creamy Baked Sweet Potato.

Would you like more Eggplant recipes? Try Cheese and Eggplant Torte, Roasted Eggplant with a Garlic Sauce, and Persian Style Eggplant.

Browse all of our Aubergine recipes and all of our French dishes. Our Baked recipes are here. Or enjoy our Late Autumn dishes.

Feel free to browse vegetarian recipes from our first blog which was in existence from 1995 – 2006, in our Retro Recipes series.

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Roasted Red Pepper Salad with Mozzarella and White Beans | Roasted Red Capsicum Salad

Another beautifully coloured salad for Autumn, beautiful reds of the roasted capsicums. Here we toss them with white beans, fresh mozzarella and a little shallot.

Don’t you just love roasted peppers? While you are roasting them for this salad, add another 1 or 2 or 12, so that you can used them throughout the week. I find it easiest to roast peppers and eggplants on my covered BBQ, but you can also do it over a gas flame on your stove, under a grill or in the oven.

Would you like to try other Red Pepper/ Capsicum Salads? Try Red Pepper and Tomato Salad with Crispy Flatbread, Chilli and Lime, Peperoni in Padella – Roasted Red Peppers Salad, and Sweet Red Pepper Salads. There is a Roast Pepper Relish too.

Or try other Capsicum Dishes – Green Peppers in Yoghurt, Pumpkin Soup with Red Peppers, and Stuffed Capsicums with Kidney Beans and Feta. Also see How to Dry Red Capsicums.

And please try our Quinoa, Parsley and Lemon Salad with White BeansGreen Tomato and Mozzarella Salad, and Tapenade Bread Salad with Tomatoes and Mozzarella.

Explore all of our Capsicum Salads and all of our Salads. You can browse other Capsicum recipes too. Or browse our Early Autumn dishes.

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Red Pepper and Tomato Salad with Crispy Flatbread, Chilli and Lime

A Salad with the tastes of Mexico

What to do with left over flatbread or roti, no longer near its prime, but not yet ready to be allocated to the bin? Ah, I have the answer for you. Crisp it up in the oven and turn it into a wonderful, Mexican influenced salad.

Those organic corn chips can be used in this salad too – the ones without added flavourings. They are perfect. Also corn tortillas, crisped in the oven. You will love this salad.

While you are at it, crisp up a lot of the flatbread, rotis or tortillas. They are excellent with cheese or dips. Very crispy and crunchy.

You might also like Roasted Sweet Pepper Salad, Roasted Red Peppers with Mozzarella and White Beans, and Red Pepper and Tomato Salad with Crispy Flatbreads.

Feel free to browse our other Salad recipes. We have a lot, so if you just want just Tomato Salad recipes they are here, and Red Pepper Salads here. This is a salad inspired by Bittman – have a look at his other superb salads.  Or simply explore our easy Late Summer recipes.

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Green Peppers in Yoghurt

The Middle East has a variety of flavours and dishes that are amazing and under-explored in other countries. And yoghurt, one of my favourite food stuffs, features strongly there as it does in India. The recipes using yoghurt are often simple – take a vegetable, some yoghurt, garlic, dried mint and some spices, mix and serve.

Traditionally it is used as a pre-dinner snack or appetiser, generally served with pita bread., but you can use any flat bread. We get a great Afghan flatbread cooked fresh on the tandoor from our local shop, and it is amazing.

You can use the Green Peppers in Yoghurt as you might use a salad. If you use thick, drained yoghurt they can be used as a dip or spread, or it can be used as a sauce or dressing.

If you are looking for other Middle Eastern dishes, try Fragrant Eggplant with a Garlic-Yoghurt Sauce, Cucumber and Yoghurt Mezze, Green Tahini Dip and Sauce, and Chickpea “Tabbouleh”.

Capsicum recipes you might like to explore include Grilled Peppers and Eggplant Salad, Roasted Red Pepper Salad, Char Grilled Banana Chillies Stuffed with Tomatoes and Spices, and Baked Peppers with Cherry Tomatoes.

Explore all of our Capsicum dishes, our Middle Eastern dishes and all of our Salads are here. Our Dips are here if you are after dips and sauces. Or simply take some time to explore our Mid Summer dishes.

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Pasta Sauce with Aubergine, Red Peppers and Tomato

This dish combines the classic flavours of an Italian pasta dish.

Often a pasta dish is my go-to Saturday or Sunday night fare. With a friend from a good Italian commercial pasta making family, we are never short of good pasta. This dish combines the classic flavours of an Italian pasta dish. Use a great spaghetti, a thick one if you can, or thin if you cannot. Pasta shells work well also.

You might like to read Pasta with Soul – how long to cook pasta. Similar dishes include Pasta with a Cauliflower Sauce, Baked Tomato Pasta Sauce, Pasta Aglio e Olio, and Pasta with Tomato and Basil.

Or try Char Grilled Banana Chillies Stuffed with Tomatoes and Spices.

Explore our other Pasta recipes, our Eggplant recipes and our Italian recipes. Or browse our easy Mid Winter recipes.

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Roasted Capsicum, Tomato and Peanut Soup with Chipotle

A wonderful, smoky flavoured soup.

A dear friend was experiencing tough times, but he made this wonderful Autumnal Soup as one of his first experiments with cooking solo again! It was an instant success and did the rounds of many friends.

About 2 decades after first making this soup, I discovered its origin – it is from Cooking with Kurma by Kurma Das. Kurma is a Hare Krishna vegetarian cook and replaces all onions and garlic with asafoetida – that solves the puzzle of why this very Indian ingredient features in a Mexican-style soup.  Feel free to replace the asafoetida in the recipe with onions and garlic.

For similar recipes, try Cream of Roasted Swede Soup, Carrot and Roasted Tomato Soup, Rustic Red Lentil and Tomato Soup, and Tomato Soup with Feta.

Browse our other Tomato Soup Recipes, all of our many Soup Recipes, our Capsicum Recipes, and all of our Tomato recipes. Or simply explore our Late Autumn dishes.

Continue reading “Roasted Capsicum, Tomato and Peanut Soup with Chipotle”

Capsicums Stuffed with Kidney Beans and Feta

Not a fancy dish, Capsicums Stuffed with Kidney Beans and Feta is a comfort dish. A dish for cold Friday nights in front of the TV.

With the remains of a bag of lentils sitting falornly on the kithen bench, I came across a recipe for Capsicums stuffed with Kidney Beans in my pile of hand written recipes saved over years. I am also a sucker for stuffed vegetables. So when this recipe turned up, I knew that I had lunch in the bag.

This isn’t a fancy dish. It is a comfort, homely, family dish that can be served for a quick, warming lunch or with a salad for a dinner eaten in front of the TV.

You might also like to try Drying Capsicums for Snacks, or Bhajji, Indian Vegetable Fritters. Or browse all of our Kidney Bean recipes and all of our Stuffed recipes here and here. Our Capsicum recipes are here and here. Find some inspiration in our Spring recipes here and here. Continue reading “Capsicums Stuffed with Kidney Beans and Feta”