Smoked Paprika & Coriander Pizza

Recently life has been a bit hectic and not normal so even our diet has been disrupted! We end up craving naughty foods but really want something quick. The chocolate bar or packet of crisps call out to me and I give in readily, however today I made this really simple Mexican/Italian fusion pizza!!

Full of taste and cheese!! Yes as most of you know I adore cheese, it is my absolute weakness combined with tomato, I am in heaven!!!

Here is the recipe for a quick tasty fix…

INGREDIENTS

2 Pitta bread toasted lightly

grated cheddar cheese

handful of fresh coriander

For the sauce

half a cup of crushed tomato

1 tsp rapeseed oil

1/2 tsp smoked paprika

sprinkle of dried oregano

salt to taste

METHOD

In a small saucepan, heat the oil on a low heat with the oregano. Once it sizzles pour in the crushed tomato with the rest of the ingredients

Keep on low, stir well and cook for 5 minutes

Once the sauce is done, spread on the pitta bread, and top with the coriander and grated cheese

Place under the grill until the cheese is melted and then devour!

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Comforting Food Always!

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I always find myself making and discovering new recipes but don’t tend to make recipes that I’ve previously developed. Not because it becomes repetitive, more that I’m always looking for new things to cook!

So, this weekend I decided to change things up a bit and go back to a recipe that I made a while back and adored the first time round. I made the tomato sauce a bit more Mexican and spicy and reversed the filling and sauce around. This is The first dish and now for what we had at the weekend. I think it makes for a nice winter meal as the heat of the spices warms you through.

So very easy to prepare in advance if you have guests coming round or so quick to make when you want a simple, fast meal. Hope you all enjoy it!
Have a mesmerising Monday, much love D x

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INGREDIENTS

For the filling

A large bag of baby spinach 400g
1 large garlic clove
150g full fat soft cheese
1 tbsp olive oil
Salt & pepper to taste

For the sauce

430g tomato passata
1 small white onion chopped
1 tbsp olive oil
1/3 tsp taco/mexican seasoning
1/2 veg stock cube
1/3 tsp cayenne pepper/paprika
1 level tsp salt

6 large tortilla wraps
Grated mature cheddar cheese

METHOD

Preheat the oven to 190°c

Blitz all the filling ingredients together in a food processor…DONE!

For the sauce

Heat up the Olive oil. Sauté the chopped onion on a low heat until golden brown. Pour in the tomato passata along with all the seasoning, stir well. Cook through for 10 to 15 minutes

To see the set up of the enchilada go to…Mexican spinach enchiladas

Once all layed out in baking dish, pour over the tomato sauce. Place in the oven and bake for 15 minutes or until the cheese has melted and has is all golden

Serve with a salad of your choice

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Greek Feta Tex Mex Taco’s!

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The first time I tasted feta cheese was with a dear friend of mine about 12 years ago. I had gone to visit him at university and he treated me to my first Greek Feta lunch.

Tangy, yet mellow thinly sliced soft white slabs of feta, all mixed with a tasty salad and heavenly dressing! I can still remember eating this adorable dish!

It is only until yesterday when I had a bit of the low fat feta cheese that it took me back to this memory buried in my subconscious. I must have had the low fat option the very first time as my palette recalled the taste that I’ve not had since then! I then came across some taco shells and a tin of refried beans in my store room and “Eureka!” Along came the notion of Greek tacos!

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I’m not going to tell you how good they were as I feel the pictures speak for themselves and I know you will be so tempted to try these! Enjoy! Much love D x

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INGREDIENTS

1 tin of sweetcorn, naturally sweet
125g low fat feta cheese
15 mini plum tomatoes sliced in rounds
1 red onion finely diced
½ cucumber peeled, finely cubed
Handful of freshly chopped coriander
Salt to taste
Fresh lemon juice

1 tin of refried beans
⅓ tsp smoked paprika
Squeeze of fresh lemon juice

Ready made taco shells

METHOD

• Prepare all the salad ingredients, season with salt and lemon

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• Crumble or finely cube in the feta cheese and combine well

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• On a low heat warm up the refried beans, once thet starten to soften into a paste, stir in the paprika and lemon juice

• Crisp up the taco shells by heating them in the oven by instruction and then snap in half. Spread a little of the bean mixture onto the shell and then place the salad on top!

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He just can’t help himself! 🙂

A Mexican Lime, Courgette & Pepper Risotto

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Something to celebrate Cinco de Mayo! A date to me which never had any relevance until now. By blogging for just under a year, I have learnt so much about different cultures and countries from you all. Amazing new festivals and celebrations I knew nothing about! I am very grateful to you all and in thanks I send this risotto with a Mexican edge!

The lime that transforms this risotto really tantalises and adds to the courgette and bell pepper, enhancing the overall feel and taste of this wonderful recipe.

Mexican Italian fusion I think this will be! I couldn’t help myself last night, I had two helpings! I think I have fallen in love with risotto all over again, especially with the Mexican elements doing a rumba on my tongue!

I hope you enjoy it as much as I did! Let’s fall in love again x

Buenos días & Buongiorno! Have a brilliant day x

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INGREDIENTS

250-300g Arborio rice
1 courgette sliced finely diced
1 small white onion finely chopped
1 green bell pepper diced
½ the juice of a lime
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp butter/low fat butter spread
⅓ tsp salt or to taste
1 litre vegetable stock

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METHOD

• Melt the butter with the olive oil in a large non stick pan on a slow heat

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Add the onion and pepper and sauté for 2 minutes then throw in the rice and make sure every grain is coated in the oil. Keep mixing to avoid sticking

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• Slowly add a ladleful of vegetable stock and continue to stir, each time the stock is absorbed add a ladleful at a time.

•The whole cooking process should take about 30-35 minutes. Half way through mix in the courgette and continue to cook in the same way

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• You may need a little more stock to get to your desired rice consistency. I like mine just cooked

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• Make sure all the vegetables are tender, season with salt and more butter if desired. Serve with a wedge of lime and a little grated parmesan if you so wish

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Red Pepper & Lime Risotto With Feta

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I have had this fusion risotto running through my mind for quite a while now. Yesterday I had all the ingredients I needed, so “hey presto!” it was created, made and devoured very fast.
A Mexican base with sweet, earthy notes of red pepper and a sour lift from the lime. Only then to top it off with some Feta cheese, for that Greek influence.

Oh my friends…you have to try this and tell me how it goes..Have a wonderful Wednesday and enjoy. Much love D x

INGREDIENTS

1 red bell pepper diced
2 garlic cloves minced
1 tbsp olive oil
1½ cup arborio rice
1 litre vegetable stock
Salt to taste
Juice of half a lime
Feta cheese crumbled

METHOD

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● Heat the oil in a large non stick saucepan on a medium heat. Sauté the pepper for a couple of minutes and throw in the rice. Mix and cover each grain in the oil

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● Start pouring a ladle of vegetable stock one at a time into the rice mix. Keep stirring on a low to medium heat

● Once the stock is absorbed add another ladle full into the saucepan. Continuously mixing

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● This should go on until the rice becomes tender and soft and the risotto creamy

● Season with salt and stir in the lime juice. Serve with a topping of crumbled feta cheese

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Peri-Peri Chip, Cheese & Bean Wrap

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These days I don’t think we go once a week without my oven Peri-peri spicy masala chips, my little ones’ always request them for lunch!  So I HAD to come up with a healthy addition!  Beans! Came to mind and a chip butty!

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So, here we have a spicy refried bean wrap with chips and lots of cheese.  This way the boys and me are getting carbs, protein and dairy in the one meal!  It was soooo filling and soooo yummy!  A dish you can prep earlier and put together when the oven chips have been cooked…great for all the family especially the kids!

Have a super duper Sunday! And I’ll see you all tomorrow! Much love D x

INGREDIENTS

1 tin (215g) spicy refried beans
1 tomato diced
1 onion diced
1 tbsp olive oil
⅓ tsp cumin seeds
½ vegetable stock cube
⅓ cup boiling water
Lemon/lime juice
Fresh coriander

Portion of peri-peri chips
Large tortilla wraps
Grated Cheddar cheese

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METHOD

• Heat up the oil with the cumin seeds in a medium saucepan, once seeds start to sizzle lower to a medium heat.  Add the onion and tomato, cook until onion is golden brown

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• Crumble over stock cube,  mix in the refried beans with the boiling water.  Lower to a gentle simmer.  Cover and cook for 7-10 minutes stirring occasionally

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• Finally squeeze over a little lemon/lime juice and stir in the coriander

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To assemble the wraps

• Make a vertical strip of bean mixture in the centre of a warmed tortilla

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• Place the peri-peri chips on top of the mixture and a liberal helping of grated cheese

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• Roll up and slice in two!  Now just simply Enjoy!  You may want some salsa or guacamole with it

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Spinach & ricotta enchiladas

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Now your thinking having looked at the picture above has she made enchiladas or spinach & ricotta cannelloni? Well I’ve done it again! I’ve combined two classic Italian and Mexican dishes to form one superb fusion dish that will leave your tastebuds wanting more. Also you will all have noticed that instead of the spinach & ricotta mixture being in the enchiladas as it is meant to be in cannelloni I’ve swapped it around. This way you still get a kick from the chilli tomato sauce inside the enchilada but more importantly it is smothered in a vibrant fresh green spinach sauce that really blew me away as it came bubbling out of the oven. This creamy garlic tomatoey taste sensation is not to be missed!

INGREDIENTS

300g baby spinach
250g ricotta cheese
430g tomato passata
1 small white onion chopped
2 cloves garlic crushed
1 tbsp olive oil
1/3 tsp dried oregano
1/2 veg stock cube
1/3 tsp cayenne pepper
1 level tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
Cheddar cheese grated
6 large tortilla wraps

METHOD
• Preheat oven to 180ºc/350ºf/gas mark 4. In a food processor blitz the spinach and garlic to a paste, add a little water to get the process going. Throw in the salt, pepper and ricotta cheese and once again blitz so that it all combines

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• Heat the oil in a small saucepan, sauté the onions til soft. Sprinkle in the oregano and pour in the passata with cayenne pepper. Crumble in the stock cube and add a little water. If the tomato passata is too sour then stir in a little brown sugar to balance out the flavour. Cook on a low flame for 10 minutes

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• Place a wrap on a clean surface. Spoon some tomato sauce plus the ricotta/spinach sauce and gently roll up

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• Repeat for the remainder of the wraps and lay in a baking dish

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• Pour all the spinach sauce onto the rolled wraps making sure everything is covered

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• Distribute a generous layer of grated cheddar cheese to form the topping

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• Bake on the middle shelf for approximately 20 minutes and then brown off the cheese under the grill to make the enchiladas crispy

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• Serve with a side salad or some mexican rice

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Vegetarian Thai Mexican soup

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This soup first started off as a vegetarian Mexican soup and then I decided to change it up a bit by introducing a Thai edge to it. I love fusion food and this really works. The ginger and chilli warms the palette and the lime is the tangy twist that really lifts this soup. The addition of quorn, leek and courgette makes this soup even healthier. One of my invented favourites for sure!

INGREDIENTS

For the Thai quorn chicken ~
300g Quorn chicken style pieces
1 tbsp oil
1 tsp grated ginger
A little fresh red chilli
1 tbsp sweet chilli sauce
2 tbsp water
1/4 tsp salt
Dried red chilli seeds pinch

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For the Mexican soup base ~
1 large courgette grated
1 leek grated
1 garlic clove crushed
A little tomato passata or tomato pureé for flavour
1300 ml of water
1 veg stock cube
1/2 tsp paprika
1 tsp ground cumin and coriander powder
salt to taste
Juice of 1/2 lime or more to taste
cornflour to thicken

METHOD

To make the thai quorn chicken
1. Heat the oil in a medium saucepan and let the ginger and red chilli infuse into the oil for a couple of minutes. Add the quorn pieces and coat well in the chilli oil, add water and salt and cover for 10 minutes on a low flame

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2. The pieces should now be tender, stir in the sweet chilli sauce and cook for a further 5-7 minutes on a low flame. Leave to rest, once cooled a little, shred in a food processor to small gravel size pieces

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3. Meanwhile start the soup base, heat the oil and add the courgette, leek and garlic.

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Sauté for a few minutes until soft, throw in the paprika, cumin and coriander powder, salt and crumble in the stock cube.
Cook for 2 minutes and then pour in the water and stir in the passata or puree, bring to a boil and gently mix in the quorn thai pieces

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4. Cook on a medium to low flame for a further 10 minutes, you may need to thicken the soup using 1 tsp cornflour diluted in a tbsp of water. Just add this mixture to the soup and stir well to thicken. Lastly squeeze in the lime juice and garnish with coriander. Serve with home made tortilla baked chips

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My valued mini blackboard where all my ideas come to fruition!

Chilli quorn carne

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As a child I always wondered what the fascination for chilli con carne was all about. Being a vegetarian stopped me from eating it! Until…Soya mince came on the scene. Ever since then I have been making this dish and now know why so many love chilli con carne so! Hope you enjoy my veggie take on this classic!

INGREDIENTS

300g Quorn frozen soya mince
200g tomato passata
1 tin kidney beans with water
1 large onion chopped finely
1/2 red bell pepper diced
4 garlic cloves crushed
1 hot chilli finely sliced
1 tbsp oil
1 tsp paprika
3 tsp taco spice mix
1 tsp ground cumin
1 1/2 level tsp salt
1/3 tsp sugar
Squeeze of tomato ketchup
1/2 juice of lime

METHOD

1. Heat oil in a large saucepan. Add chilli. Wait 2 minutes on a low heat then add the onion, pepper and garlic. Once the onion is translucent, slowly pour in the passata

2. Throw in paprika, cumin, taco spice, salt and sugar. Cook on a low heat for 5 minutes. Mix in the soya mince, then pour in the water

3. Bring to the boil and then cover and simmer for 12 minutes. Stirring half way through

4. Lastly put in the kidney beans and its water and simmer low for a further 20 minutes uncovered. Stirring occasionally

5. Squeeze in the lime juice, stir and then serve on a bed of American rice or with some nacho chips and sour cream

Mexican bean paratha

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A delicately spiced Mexican bean unleavened bread which is traditionally an Indian bread. However the fusion of Mexican and Indian in this dish work really well, that you can have the best from both

INGREDIENTS

1 can kidney beans drained & rinsed
1 onion pureed
2 garlic cloves crushed
1 chilli finely chopped
1 tsp cumin and coriander powder
11/2 tsp taco spice mix
1/2 tsp salt
Squeeze of lime
70g grated cheese
2 tbsp crushed tomato/passata
200 g chapatti flour/medium whole wheat flour
Extra flour for rolling out parathas

METHOD

1. Put onion, garlic, chilli and kidney beans into a food processor and blend to a smooth paste

2. Add cheese, tomato passata, taco spice mix, lime, ground cumin/coriander,salt and blend to combine

3. Slowly put in flour and mix to combine into a soft sticky dough.

4. Meanwhile heat up a tsp of oil in a small non stick frying pan on a slow medium heat

5. Take one heaped tablespoon of dough mixture and form into a ball. You will need extra flour to prevent dough from sticking whilst you roll it out as it is a little wet resulting in soft parathas. Heavily flour a clean surface and roll out to a 10cm diameter round

6. When the oil is sizzling cook the paratha on both sides, using some oil on the other side too until it has brown spots and takes on some brown colour. Repeat for each paratha

7. Once prepared serve with some fresh tomato salsa and guacamole