Quinoa with Spinach & Balsamic Glazed Tomatoes

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This has to be my most favourite quinoa salad dish to date! Last night we wanted something really light and healthy and this ticked all the boxes. Recently you may be noticing that I have been creating a lot of Mediterranean recipes. I just love the flavours and am probably secretly craving the sun, sea and sand!
A taste of the Med will hopefully keep me going! Until I get there!

An excellent vegan dish also, just leave out the feta and use an alternative if you wish. The balsamic vinegar helps mingle all the flavours and really brings out the sweetness in the juicy cherry tomatoes. I need to go buy some more quinoa today to make some more. Have a stunning day! Much love D x

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INGREDIENTS

150g baby spinach
12 asparagus spears chopped
16 cherry tomatoes halved
1 tbsp olive oil
1 garlic clove minced
½ tsp salt or to taste
½ tsp dried oregano
Dash of Balsamic vinegar
1½ cup pre cooked quinoa
Feta cheese (optional)

METHOD

• Heat up the oil in a deep pan with the garlic on a medium heat. Once the oil is hot add the asparagus and cherry tomatoes

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• Season with the salt and oregano. Stir fry so that everything is coated in oil. Lower the heat and cook for 5-8 minutes until the asparagus is tender

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• Splash in a little Balsamic vinegar and mix well. Place the fresh spinach on top of the cooked asparagus and tomatoes and turn off the heat

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• This way the spinach will wilt a little but largely remain soft and fresh. Leave to sit for 10 minutes

• Place the quinoa in a large mixing bowl, mix in the asparagus, tomatoes and spinach. Making sure you get all the juices and dressing in

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• Combine well and serve warm with some crumbled feta cheese

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Simple Bombay Potato Curry

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It is easy to forget that one of the main reasons I started this food blog was to and is still to record lots of recipes, that I have learnt, that I have developed. This particular dry potato curry is a speciality of my Mum and Dad’s. It is one that I grew up on, with moong lentil daal and rice plus fluffy chapatis.

Today I am treating my family to this ultra healthy meal and deliciousness!…I couldn’t let you all, my friends here on Shivaay Delights miss out either. The potato curry has the simplest of ingredients and results in an extremely tasty soft velvety melt in your mouth potato treat. Do give it a whirl and let me know how you like it.

Have a Wonderful Wednesday, much love, D x

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INGREDIENTS

4 medium red potatoes, peeled and cubed 2cm pieces
2 tbsp sunflower oil
½ tsp mustard seeds
½ tsp cumin seeds
A pinch of asafoetida
1 tsp salt or to taste
¾ tsp turmeric
2 tsp coriander & cumin powder
Fresh coriander to garnish

METHOD

Heat the oil on a medium heat along with the asafoetida, cumin and mustard seeds.  Once the seeds start to pop add the potatoes. 

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Sprinkle all the seasoning and spices, toss the potatoes so that all is covered in the oil and spices

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Reduce the heat to low, cover and cook the curry for 10 minutes, check mix again and cook for another 10 minutes.  Keep an eye on it and when the potatoes are tender when sliced your curry is done.  Garnish with some fresh coriander and serve with naan bread

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Creamy Chestnut Mushrooms With Spring Onion

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I had not cooked with chestnut mushrooms before, assuming they were too strong in taste, but I was extremely happy with this jacket potato filler I conjured up. Meaty and solid in texture, stays together in comparison to closed cup mushrooms when cooked. Went really well with the light refreshing taste of the cream cheese and even more so with the garlic that added an extra buzz to the cheese sauce.

A real winner in our home and one to go on our list for quick winter warmer meals. I adore baked potatoes, always have! but this just made the fluffy hot potato that bit more special. I am about to go make some dinner for today…involving halloumi cheese and aubergine…Recipe coming up soon.
Have a wonderful weekend friends! Much love, D x

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INGREDIENTS

1 punnet chestnut mushrooms sliced
3-4 tbsp soft cream cheese
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp olive oil
3 spring onions sliced finely
2 cloves garlic minced
Salt to taste
Cheddar cheese grated

Baked Jacket potatoes to accompany

METHOD

Heat up the oil and butter in a deep saucepans on low.  Throw in the minced garlic sauté for a minute or so

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Add the mushrooms, making sure they are coated in the garlic butter/oil

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Cook for 5 to 7 minutes until soft.  Stir in half the spring onions and the cream chesse until the cheese turns into a thick creamy sauce

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Keep on a low heat for a further 5 minutes and then you are ready to serve up your soft fluffy buttered jacket potato.  Top off with some grated cheddar and the rest of the spring onions

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Low Calorie Onion Soup

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I was checking my pantry for which vegetables I had to make a soup today especially as it’s very chilly here in the UK and everyone seems to have a cold and sore throat.  My husband being one of them, however he is very lucky! because I happened to find two bags of onions sitting there untouched.

All I could picture was a soothing hot onion soup with lingering notes of garlic dancing through the sweetness of the caramelized onions.  I looked up a few recipes and noticed that mostly all used a lot of butter and beef stock.  So I decided to create a vegetarian onion soup and low in calories!  Win, win for me…ultimate flavour and a healthier option!  It’s cooking on the stove right now and I can’t wait to tuck into a big bowl with a little mature cheddar and bread…
Oops less of the cheddar! Forgot…meant to be a low fat meal! 😉

Hope you enjoy my version of a classic soup…much love, D x

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INGREDIENTS

3 medium onions sliced
1 clove garlic minced
1 tbsp low fat butter spread
1 tbsp olive oil
Salt to taste
Sprinkling of sugar
1 litre vegetable stock

METHOD

Heat up the butter and oil in a deep saucepan, sauté the onions until soft on a low heat. Sprinkle with sugar and carry on cooking until caramelized, can take up to 15 minutes

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Add the garlic and cook through for a minute or two pour in the vegetable soup stock with salt to taste and simmer gently for 30 minutes

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Serve with some fresh baguette and cheese of your choice

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Quick Pizza For The Kids

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This margherita pizza can be cooked from scratch, faster than you can order one to collect! I found it especially handy for my 2 boys who love their typically “only cheese and tomato pizza”. I made this one this evening and we all devoured it with absolute delight.

I didn’t have time to take many pictures as it’s such a messy process with the dough but I found it very therapeutic. Especially kneading and pushing the dough into the tray to form the base. Hope you enjoy it. The olive oil also gives the base a scrumptious crunch. Have a beautiful day friends, much love D x

INGREDIENTS

DOUGH

200g plain flour
7g instant yeast
1 tsp sugar
¼ tsp salt
125 ml warm water
Olive oil for baking

TOPPING

100g tomato passata
Pinch of dried oregano
Salt to taste
Grated mozzarella or cheddar cheese

METHOD

Preheat the oven to 220°c, grease a large rectangular tray with the olive oil

In a bowl or food mixer, throw in the flour, sugar, salt and yeast together.  Mix well, slowly pour in the water.  Knead until smooth. 

Transfer into the greased tray and using your fingers press the dough into the corners, making a rectangular thin dough base

In a small saucepan heat up the tomato passata with the oregano and salt.  Cook on a low heat for 5 minutes to warm through

Spread the tomato sauce onto the pizza base, top off with cheese and place in the oven, bake for 15-20 minutes or until based is nice and crispy

Recipe from BBC Good Food

Rosecoco Piri Piri Beans & Rice

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A staple meal of beans and rice has and always has done wonders for me! I find it satisfying, comforting and most importantly healthy. Great on a winters cold evening after picking up the boys from school. Simple, efficient and delightful. There is not a lot I can say about this dish. Just go ahead and try it friends. Do let me know how you like them. You are free to change the bean but don’t forget the spices especially the piri piri!

Enjoy, Have a lovely day! Much love, D x

INGREDIENTS

1 tin Rosecoco beans drained
Salt to taste
2 Spring onions finely sliced
½ tsp ginger paste
5 tbsp tomato passata
1 tsp piri piri powder
1 tsp ground coriander powder
¼ tsp turmeric powder
1 tbsp olive oil

METHOD

In a non stick frying pan with the oil, fry off the spring onion and ginger with spices

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Pour in the passata, season with salt and on a low heat…warm through

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Add the beans, stir and cook for a further 10 minutes

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Serve with some fluffy white rice.

It’s all about the chocolate topping!

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That gooey chocolate topping on a cake or traybake really makes the moist sponge that you’ve prepared sing! You can choose any sponge recipe but one of my favourites is a chocolate sponge recipe by Mary Berry. The chocolate topping recipe is mine which is one I have used time and time again and is delicious even though I say so myself. I sprinkled a generous amount of white metallic sweet pearls on my traybake, to give contrast and make it look pretty! I was in a very girly mood over the weekend! Enjoy, much love D x

INGREDIENTS

For the sponge

50g  cocoa powder
6 tbsp boiling water
100g baking spread or soft butter
275g caster sugar
3 large free-range eggs
125ml  milk
175g self-raising flour
1 tsp baking powder

For the chocolate ganache topping

200g plain chocolate
180ml double cream light

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METHOD

~ Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4 (160C fan).

~ Put the cocoa in a large bowl, add the boiling water and mix until smooth. Add the baking spread or butter and beat into the cocoa until smooth, then add the remaining cake ingredients and mix until combined – this can be done in a mixer or by hand.

~ Pour into the tin, spread evenly and bake in the preheated oven for about 30-35 minutes, or until well risen, just firm to the touch and shrinking away from the sides of the tray. Leave to cool completely in the tray

~ For the chocolate ganache topping ~ heat the chocolate and cream in a saucepan over a low flame until the chocolate melts

~ Remove the pan from the heat and whisk the mixture until smooth, glossy and thickened. Set aside to cool for 1-2 hours, or until thick enough to spread over the cake

~ Pour the chocolate fans ganache over the top of the chocolate sponge base

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~ Using a palette knife, evenly spread the ganache and set aside in the fridge to set

~ Once set, carefully slice the traybake into 16 equal squares. They are now ready to be served

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I Am Soooo Eggcited!!!!

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My Sunday buy at the local supermarket allowed me to come across this very funky egg timer.  Determining the type of boiled egg you would like to devour with some buttered toast.

All I have to do is put this gadget in the pan with the boiling water and eggs and wait for the orange colour to change to white.  Giving me soft..medium or hard boiled eggs!!

I seriously can’t wait to use it.  You’ve probably guessed I’m going to be having comforting soft/medium eggs for lunch!!!…Ummmmmm…

See you soon for a chickpea chapati recipe I made last week. Have a relaxing Sunday. Much love, D x

Lemon pop pop…poppy seed muffin cakes

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HAPPY NEW YEAR to EVERYONE!  With the start of 2015, I bring you something to sweeten your tastebuds. I have been wanting to make these lemon poppy seed muffins for a long time.  My son always opts for them when we go to Starbucks and are definitely his next favourite after my double chocolate muffins.

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I wanted to add a tart lemon curd in the centre of the muffin but in the end found a great recipe online. I used the base cake recipe, left out the icing and made a lemon drizzle syrup to coat each muffin instead.  This gave the muffin a tantalising sour note with just the right amount of sweet and stickiness!

I hope you enjoy them as much as we are…wishing you all a fantastic 2015! Lots more food coming up here @ ShivaayDelights.com

Until next time! Much love D x

A recipe by Sarah Cook. BBC Good Food

INGREDIENTS

225g self-raising flour
175g golden caster sugar
zest 2 lemons
1 tbsp poppy seeds toasted
3 eggs
100g natural yogurt
175g butter, melted and cooled a little

METHOD

Heat oven to 180°c/160°c fan/gas 4 and line a 12-hole muffin tin with cupcake or muffin cases

Mix the flour, sugar, lemon zest and poppy seeds together in a large mixing bowl. Beat the eggs into the yogurt, then tip this into the dry ingredients with the melted butter

Mix together with a wooden spoon or whisk until lump-free, then divide between the cases

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Bake for 20-22 mins until a skewer poked in comes out clean – the cakes will be quite pale on top still. Cool for 5 mins in the tin, then carefully lift onto a wire rack to finish cooling

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For the Lemon Drizzle syrup

Take the juice of 1 lemon and 5 tablespoons of icing sugar. Melt and stir in a saucepan over a slow heat. Once the sugar has melted..turn off and put aside

Spoon on the warm syrup onto the individual cakes so that they are all shiny and ready to eat

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