All posts filed under: Starters

Beetroot & Lentil Salad with Goat’s Cheese Dressing

This ‘go to’ salad is perfect for a super quick lunch and is substantial too, so will keep you full through the afternoon, but it doesn’t end there!! It makes a great vegetarian starter and could be served as one of a selection of salads for a larger meal.  Why not spoon some into a container when you want to take lunch on the go!  It’s so quick to make and for a great short-cut, I often use the little pouches of cooked organic beetroot you can buy, they’re such a good stand-by, just be sure not to pick up pickled beetroot by mistake! The goat’s cheese dressing is so delicious, you don’t need to keep it just for this recipe.  With the warmer weather and longer days our thoughts change to summer foods, lighter dishes and the anticipation of all the new seasons produce that spring and summer can bring. Try the dressing on barbecued or griddled vegetables, such as aubergine, peppers and courgettes. It would make a perfect accompaniment to steamed or barbecued asparagus, look out for fresh British asparagus coming into season …

Roasted Squash, Chickpea & Kale Salad

When I first heard of Kale salad, to be honest with you, I thought it sounded awful…. eating raw kale?!! Well, I’m now eating my words and I throw marinated kale into quite a few salads! Having experimented in various ways, to achieve the best results, I remove some of the thicker, tougher stalks and then really make sure I work the kale through the dressing with my hands.  If you take your time and allow the kale to soften in the oil and lemon, the resulting dish is beautifully tender and the salad nourishing and substantial. I like to make sure a salad has plenty of other interesting ingredients too, to provide variety and interest. Use the recipe as a guide to quantities and if you feel like you’d like more roasted butternut squash, pepper or chickpeas then pile them in and enjoy!! This recipe was developed as part of the Bones & Joints Module of the Culinary Medicine Diploma I’m currently studying. You can read on at the end to find out how these …

Lime & Coriander Salmon Salad

This colourful salad is just perfect as a light summer lunch or supper. Packed with gorgeous flavours based on the traditional dish, Ceviche, from Latin America, where fish is marinated in lime juice and flavoured with chilli. Here, the salmon is cooked, flavoured with lime rind and combined with cucumber, avocado, pepper, red onion and fresh herbs, resulting in an amazingly refreshing dish. A glass of crisp white or rosé wine on the side, finishes this off beautifully!! If you’d like a non-alcoholic drink, try adding slices of lime and sprigs of mint to a jug of iced water, its deliciously fresh!! This recipe was developed as the lunchtime dish for a day’s menu  supporting the heart and circulatory system. Read on for details as to how each ingredient can benefit the body. Serves 2   2 salmon fillets grated rind and juice of 2 limes sea salt and freshly ground black pepper ½ cucumber 1 red pepper ½ red onion 1 ripe avocado 1 red chilli 1tbsp olive oil 4tbsp chopped fresh coriander 1tbsp chopped …

Smoked Mackerel Paté

This week I’m sharing one of my really quick, go to recipes when I’m looking for a speedy, healthy lunch to feed the family. Serve it with toasted wholemeal pitta, or oat cakes, served with a pile of sliced cucumber and watercress. If you keep a bowl in the fridge, you can also sneak a snack on a chunk of cucumber to satisfy the mid morning munchies!! It’s great for picnics too! Packed full of omega 3 fatty acids, mackerel is a great food to include regularly in the diet. Omega 3 fatty acids help the body produce its own anti-inflammatory response. Great for helping to keep heart and circulation system healthy as well as maintaining cell membrane function.   Serves about 4   230g packet smoked mackerel fillets 2-3tbsp live probiotic natural yogurt about 1tsp creamed horseradish juice of 1 lemon, about 2tbsp salt and black pepper Remove the skin from the mackerel and place in a food processor with the remaining ingredients and plenty of seasoning. If you love horseradish, I’d add an extra 1/2tsp! Using …

Roasted Chickpea, Shiitake & Spinach Salad

  This recipe really packs a nutritional punch! Its great for boosting your immune system. All the information you need is at the end of the recipe.  A great healthy lunch which, I think, is better served warm, however any leftovers would make a perfect packed lunch too. The sumac gives a tangy lemony flavour and is often used in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cookery. It’s now stocked in most supermarkets with the herbs and spices. Serves 4   400g tin chickpeas olive oil sea salt and black pepper 1tsp sumac grated rind and juice of 1 lemon 250g shiitake mushrooms 1 garlic clove, crushed ½ small red onion 100g bag fresh baby spinach, washed 100g feta cheese, crumbled   Drain the chickpeas and rinse well. Drain and dry on kitchen paper and remove any loose skins. Place the chickpeas in a frying pan and drizzle over a little olive oil and a light sprinkling of sea salt. Shake to coat the chickpeas in the oil and salt. Cook over a medium heat for about 10 minutes until …

Mini Smoked Salmon & Courgette Frittata

This is the first of the recipes I developed as part of my Diploma in Culinary Medicine. I’ve just completed the first module relating to Diabetes, Obesity & Metabolic Syndrome and this is the breakfast recipe that formed part of a days menu. At the end of the recipe I’ve included the write up I had to submit with the recipe, so if you’re interested you can see why I’ve used certain ingredients and the benefit they offer! This has been read by Dale Pinnock, The Medicinal Chef, who has written the course and assesses our work! You can serve one or two of these tasty little frittata for a perfect breakfast or wrap in greaseproof paper and take with you! They are so quick to put together, you could pop them in the oven whilst you get ready in the morning! They also make a perfect lunch with salad at home or on the go, or make really small ones and serve as canapés! Makes 6 coconut oil or olive oil 1 courgette about 200g …

Lemony Beetroot Dip

Ok, so if you’ve got over the colour of this and are reading this post then I’m impressed!! I’ve been trying to introduce more beetroot into my diet whether roasted and tossed into salads or in this delicious vibrant recipe! A great alternative to humous, this nutritious dip blends cooked beetroot with borlotti beans which have a deliciously nutty flavour and are amazingly creamy. Make sure you season well with plenty of salt pepper and lemon juice to help bring out the flavours. This recipe couldn’t be easier to make, everything goes in a food processor and is whizzed until smooth! This dip would add a splash of colour to any drinks party over Christmas and is perfect to serve with the traditional Boxing Day cold cuts. When the weather gets warmer and the sun begins to shine again, it makes a great accompaniment to a summer barbecue!  Have a look below for a few more serving suggestions.   1 lemon 250g cooked beetroot, not pickled (see below) 400g tin borlotti beans, rinsed and drained 2tbsp tahini 1 large …