Tag Archives: dip

Beet hummous with fresh mint

Love the colour!

Love the summer colours!

This is a perfect holiday recipe: healthy vibrant colour and gorgeous taste for a minimum of efforts…

I used mint from the wonderful herb garden that comes with the villa we are staying in here in Crete and I would encourage you to grow a pot of mint wherever you can as it is such an uplifting smell and it grows really fast in pots, on windowsills or balconies in pretty much any climate.

Ingredient list:

  • 1/2 tin of chick pea
  • 1 cooked beetrout
  • 1 spoonful of Tahini
  • Virgin cold pressed Olive oil 100ml
  • Lemon juice of 1 and 1/2 lemon
  • 3 garlic cloves crushed
  • 1 spoonful of ground cumin
  • a small handful of crushed mint leaves

Blitz all ingredients in a food processor (I use a standing blender); adding a bit of olive oil or even water too make it lighter if the consistency is too thick. But I never puree it to finely as I enjoy a bit of texture.

Beetroot is great for joints and particularly important for runners or anybody who wishes to take care of their knees. I love it also for its happy colour !

Aubergine caviar – In praise of simple food!

“Caviar d’aubergine” or Aubergine dip is a traditional middle eastern dish and I love it everywhere and anywhere because it is super healthy and oh so simple to whip up. I can hardly believe I have not yet included it in this blog… For us, it always goes with our family size pot of hummous and lots of fresh veg and homemade bread to dip in.

I have been recently immersed in the excellent book by Dr Michel de Lorgeril “Le nouveau régime méditerranéen”- a well written, even humorous scientific essay-

IMG_7185 and I am loving the idea that simple, century-old recipes still hold the key to good health and longevity. Aubergine salad or dip is one of the staples of the Mediterranean diet and as such needs to feature in a balanced diet. So here it is : not a fad’ and not made of fancy expensive ingredients nobody has heard of – just authentic, simple and classic food.

 

 Ingredients List:

  • Aubergines, 4 medium size
  • Tahini, 3 Tbsp
  • Lemon juice,  of 1 lemon
  • Pinch of salt
  • Garlic cloves, 2
  • Olive oil
  • Pepper and smoked paprika to taste

Slice the aubergines in two halves, drizzle a little oil over and put them in the oven for 1h at 160°.

Once cooled, peel them and cut them up in chunks. Press them with a potato masher or put them through the food processor with all the other ingredients until you get a smooth cream.

Check the seasoning. It needs to be sharp and well balanced but not too pungent. One tip: cut each garlic clove in twos and removed the greenish shoot in the middle to take the edge off the garlic but still have a beautiful  flavour.

Serve with oatcakes or flat bread. Or just with cut up raw carrots and peppers if you are going Paleo!

A venitian market

A venitian market

Butternut squash minty hummous

Hummus can be made with much more than chickpeas! I recently even tried a very satisfying butter beans hummus but my current favourite is a minty butternut squash version.  I also like the pumpkin version from Baity’s Kitchen blog- but can’t find it right now… So here is mine.

Ingredients list:

  • One butternut squash, diced and roasted
  • Garlic, 3 cloves
  • Nepita, 1 tsp
  • Greek yogurt at 2 %, 125g
  • Tahini, 1 big tbsp
  • thyme
  • Olive oil, 1 dash
  • salt and lemon juice to taste

First cut up and then peel the butternut. Throw the cubes into a roasting dish with a dash of olive oil, some thyme and crystal salt. Toss it all around!

When the squash is cooked – which should take less than 10 min- put it into a blender with all the other ingredients and blitz to a pulp. Add the nepita and lemon juice last. Check the seasoning. Decorate with strips of fresh mint.

Eat this delicious spread on slabs of warm fresh bread!

Sourcing note: Nepita is a wonderful minty thyme I brought back in my suitcase from Corsica but you can replace it with real thyme and fresh mint if it proves too hard to find. Although, if you have never tasted it you just don’t know what you are missing and in this dish it literally sings through in fresh and incredibly minty notes!