Garden Fresh Crunchy Marrow/Zucchini/Courgette Salad

Say hello to crunchy salad !!! Say hello to this amazing, light summer salad I threw together for lunch! I really had no clue how this was going to turn out, it was a matter of using what I had in the fridge (yeah, I do that a lot) and …I surprised myself! This is the perfect summer salad for all those lucky people out there enjoying the warmth of summer.  And, of course those that aren’t (me)….. just pretend the sun is shining and the day is good !

This is a super easy salad, and could work well just as a side salad or as a main. I am just loving the spiralized marrows, it just makes this salad so pretty :-). Just one thing, if you do make this salad, and you are wanting to make it ahead of time, don’t cut your tomatoes until you are ready to serve, otherwise your salad will become quite watery.

Garden Fresh Crunchy Marrow/Zucchini/Courgette Salad

Preparation time:  10 minutes

Serves 2 *

Ingredients:

2 cups spiralized marrows

1 cup chopped celery

1 cup fresh basil leaves

2 cups baby spinach leaves

2 cups exotic tomatoes, chopped/halved (or cherry tomatoes)

salt and pepper to taste

Olive Oil for drizzling

Nutritional Yeast for sprinkling on the top (optional)

Instructions:

Throw spiralized marrows, chopped celery, basil and baby spinach into a bowl.

Add tomatoes.

Season.

Drizzle with a bit of olive oil and sprinkle with nutritional yeast.

Enjoy 🙂

 

  • This recipe can easily be halved or doubled, depending on how many people or if you are wanting it as a main or side.  I also, used Nutritional Yeast so it is vegan, but this can be subbed with feta or any cheese of your choice if you don’t want the vegan option.
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Vegetarian Casserole with Cheesy Dumplings

 

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Another Vegetarian Meal guys…I am just on this crazy but wonderful Vegetarian ride at the moment, and its like…I just don’t want to get off it.

Well, its Spring here in good old South Africa, but with the weather we have been experiencing lately, it is hard to believe.  We have had bouts of some miserable weather, I mean about two weeks ago it was even cold for a day to two !  It was like we all of a sudden had the winter we never had this year ! Weird…. Now, these last few days have been so windy, to the point of unpleasantness, and I do not like wind.  Wind, really is not my friend….

But its cool, because over the real Winter time, it was so hot, we were eating salads, and now for Spring we are eating curries and all those nice comfort warming meals…..hence Vegetarian Casserole with Cheesy Dumplings !

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Yum, yum and yum :-). This dish is filled with delicious vegetables, and again it is very adaptable.  I basically again, used the veggies I had in my fridge before they started to look sad and bedraggled…you know how it goes.  Usually I throw them all into a pot and make a soup, or throw them…. (that really sounds awful….I don’t really ‘throw’ them….I place them…yes…I place them….) in a pan and make a delicious healthy frittata or definitely some form of a veggie concoction.

Anyway, back to the dish of the day…..super easy, scrumptious, warming to the soul and those dumplings….to die for :-).

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I thoroughly enjoy dumplings with a casserole, I remember years ago jotting down a recipe from  a cooking show, in which Rachel Allan hosted.  It was a Chicken Casserole with Cheesy Herb dumplings.  Well, need I say the recipe was divine, and the dumplings really just added this special touch to the dish. Since then, if I am wanting something special…dumplings in all forms will be added :-).

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This Vegetarian Casserole with Cheesy Dumplings is easily adaptable and can be made into a Gluten-Free meal as well, just by using a Gluten-Free Self Raising Flour for the dumplings. You can also substitute the full cream milk with a milk of your choice, and then obviously the cheese can be changed, if you don’t want to use tinned tomatoes, you can also use fresh chopped tomatoes…. I love versatile recipes !!!

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Vegetarian Casserole with Cheesy Dumplings

Preparation time:  15 minutes

Cooking time: 50 – 55 minutes

Total time:  1 hour 5 minutes – 10 minutes

Ingredients:

3 – 4 tablespoons of vegetable oil/olive oil/coconut oil

2 – 3 medium-sized onions, peeled and roughly chopped

1 large garlic clove, peeled and crushed

3 – 4 large carrots, peeled and grated

2 medium-sized turnips, peeled and grated

3 – 4 sticks of celery, chopped thinly

800 grams of tomatoes

250 millilitres (1 cup) vegetable stock

3 -4 large baby marrows/zucchinis, sliced fairly thickly

1 teaspoon dried rosemary

2 teaspoons dried thyme

1 teaspoon dried origanum

200 millilitres (1/2  tin) of Coconut Cream

salt and pepper to taste

For the Dumplings:

660 millilitres self-raising wheat flour

60 grams salted butter

160 grams cheddar cheese

250 millilitres (1 cup) of full cream milk or buttermilk

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C/390 degrees F.

Firstly, once all the ingredients are prepared and measured out, in a large pot, on medium to high, heat up the oil and saute’ the onions, carrots, turnips, and celery. This will take a few minutes, stirring constantly to prevent burning.

Add the tomatoes and stir.

Pour in the prepared vegetable stock and baby marrows (zucchini’s).

Cover the pot with a lid and bring to the boil.  Once the mixture has reached boiling point, reduce the heat to simmer and allow the vegetables to simmer for ten to fifteen minutes.

Add the coconut cream and stir.

Taste, and season well with salt and pepper.

Place the vegetables in an oven-proof casserole dish approximately 20 centimeters in width by 10 centimeters in depth (8 inches in width by 4 inches in depth – it needs to hold at least 1.5 Litres/6.5 cups) and then allow extra for the dumplings on the top.

To make the dumplings:

Place the self-raising flour in a large bowl.

Add the chopped butter, salt and grated cheese.

Make a “well” in the flour, and pour in the full cream milk or buttermilk.

Using a knife, stir and mix in the flour into the milk until this mixture forms a dough.

If you feel the dough is a bit dry, add a little more milk by the tablespoon,  This should not be a very sticky dough at all.

With your hands, form balls of dough, (approximately golf ball sizes). These don’t have to be exact, the more rough and rustic they look, the more character they will have. Pack the balls of dough onto the vegetable mixture.  Brush each ball of dough with some milk and bake for about 35 to 40 minutes or until  the dumplings are golden brown and cooked through.

Serve hot and from the oven.

Enjoy 🙂

NB*  If you are wanting to add more to this meal, serve with cooked quinoa or rice…personally though, the dumpling mixture makes quite a few, so that serves as the carbs 🙂

NB*  This meal does keep in the refrigerator if need be, but it must be covered.

NB*  Check your carrots, they may just require washing and not peeling. Remember all the nutrients are in the skins, so if the skins look good, rather not peel :-).

NB*  The oven-proof dish I used was not the correct size, it was far too shallow.  The recipe does state the correct size (no less than 1.5 litres/6.5 cups)

Vegetable and Nut Patties

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This is my all-time favourite vegetarian meal.  I originally found the recipe many years ago in an old South African cookbook called Budget Recipes.  It is a cookbook written in both English and Afrikaans by Robin Ayrdon.  Budget Recipes was published by Pick ‘n Pay Hypermarkets (Pty) Ltd.  Unfortunately I was not able to find an actual date in which it was published.  This recipe impressed me to the extent ‘I had to try it’, and that was the start of a vegetarian meal being cooked each and every week.

When I first tried it, I was a little dubious as the hubby is a real meat and potatoes kind of man, but he surprised me with compliments on the meal and is now looking at vegetarian meals with an open mind (but only once a week, I am not allowed to push it.)

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I have slightly changed some of the quantities of the ingredients from the original recipe…. Anyway these patties are easy to make.  I find them a little messy when making into patties with all the ingredients sticking to my hands and fingers, but that is the joy of making patties. The ingredients are not too crazy either so that makes it great.  I did add my home made Sweet Chilli Sauce just for a bit of  ‘kick’ to the dish this time, but this is totally optional.  In the past I have also added my home made Mayonnaise to the dish with pureed green chillies, both go exceptionally well with the patties.

All in all it is a great supper dish.  I love the crispness of the patties on the outside and the crunch of the vegetables and nuts on the inside.  The combination is to die for !

After eating them, it is a feeling of pure health, it is amazing, and definitely a feeling of wanting more.

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Vegetable and Nut Patties

Preparation time:  20 minutes

Cooking time:  20 minutes

Total time:  40 minutes

Serves 4 -6

Ingredients:

125 grams (125 ml) red/orange lentils

150 grams (125 ml) raw peanuts

1 large white onion

3 large carrots

2 celery stalks

10/12 weetbix cereal blocks

5 ml dried parsley, 5 ml dried thyme and 5 ml dried origanum)

4 extra large Free-Range eggs*

salt and pepper to taste

a little vegetable oil for frying

Instructions:

Soak the lentils for a few minutes and cook in microwave for 2 minutes.

Once done, drain well and set aside.

Dry toast the peanuts *

Chop the toasted raw peanuts till course and leave some whole if preferred.

Finely chop up the white onion.

Grate the carrots.

Slice the celery.

Crush the weetbix.

In a large mixing bowl add half of the crushed weetbix.  The remaining crushed weetbix place in a shallow dish, this will be used for the coating of the patties before frying them.

Then add the cooked lentils, toasted peanuts, onion, carrots to the large mixing bowl with half of the crushed weetbix.

Add the herbs, salt and pepper.

Stir well.

Lightly whisk 2 eggs with a fork and add to the mixture and combine thoroughly. (if you feel the mixture is too dry and you are unable to combine into patties, add another egg.)

In a separate bowl add some flour.  This is for coating the patties.

Whisk the remaining eggs in a bowl and set aside.  This will be used for the coating of the pattie before the coating of the crushed weetbix.

Add some flour to your hands, and with the help of a tablespoon, start making the patties.

Place each pattie into the egg mixture making sure the egg coats the entire pattie,  then cover the pattie with the crushed weetbix. *

On a medium heat, fry the patties in a little oil until each side is golden brown. Do not deep fry.

Drain the patties on paper towel to absorb any excess oil.

Serve immediately with a crisp salad or potatoes of your choice.

Enjoy 🙂

*  Depending on the size of the eggs, you may require another egg for coating the pattie.

*  I toast or ‘dry fry’ my nuts on top of the stove in a pan, with no oil as nuts produce their own natural oils.

*  Depending on how much you love weetbix, you may need to add extra crumbled weetbix for coating.