Potato and Zucchini Rosti

So, I am desperately trying to get more creative in the breakfast side of things, for me breakfast = egg, maybe toast or oats and of course some form of fruit.  I remembered these little morsels of fried up joy and wondered if I could just put an egg on it and call it breakfast…. nah, probably not, but then again ….. probably ??? Oh well, end result,  I caved, I was not feeling adventurous and did not do the egg. But maybe next time.  You know, as much as I love these I still do not like the frying part.  I do not know what it is with me and oil, I am just not a fan.

Anyway, these are really simple to do for any time of the day, and for whatever meal you want them for. A bit of grating and chopping is involved, and you are good to go, throw it all together, make balls, squeeze and fry.  I mean, what could be easier.  Personally, I can eat them as is, but if I want to get a bit fancier, I crumble up some feta on the top and they are even great with feta and some roasted peppers….I know, I know, all these possibilities and then imagine an egg on the top 🙂 if your heart desires.

Potato and Zucchini Rosti

Preparation time:  15 minutes

Cooking time:  20 minutes

Total time:  35 minutes

Makes 4

Ingredients:

1 cup grated potato

1 cup grated zucchini/courgettes/large marrow

Freshly cracked salt and pepper

1 Tablespoon finely chopped garlic

4 Tablespoons (60 milliliters) finely chopped onion

Sprinkling of dried chilli flakes

Oil for frying

To serve:  feta cheese and roasted peppers

Instructions:

Grate the potato and place in a dish towel and squeeze out any excess water. Place in a medium-sized bowl.

Grate the zucchini and place in the same dish towel and squeeze out any excess water.  Place in the same bowl as the potato.

Season well with salt and pepper.

Place the prepared garlic and onion to the bowl with the potato and zucchini.

Add the chilli flakes. Stir well to combine.

In a medium sized skillet or frying pan, heat up some oil to cover the bottom of the pan.

With a tablespoon, scoop out a heaped tablespoon of the mixture.  Take this tablespoon of mixture in your hands and over a bowl, squeeze.  You will find there is even more water content which needs to be released, and this is from the salt, so this is okay.  Once the water has been released, place the ball of potato and zucchini into the hot skillet and fry.  Flatten the ball slightly and fry evenly on both sides until golden brown.

Eat whilst hot.

Enjoy 🙂

NB*  If you are going to serve these with the roasted peppers, make sure the peppers are roasting in the oven, whilst you are frying.  That way, everything will be hot.

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Prawn and Peppadew Baby Marrow (Zucchini/Courgette) Noodles

 

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OMW !!! I do not know where to begin !!! This is just super easy, quick, healthy and yummy.  I mean, here we are talking, prawns, spiralized baby marrow (zucchini/courgette) noodles, wine, peppadews,…….wine…….did I mention that? and garlic,…….this is serious YUM ! I am so excited, it is ridiculous !!! 🙂 And, it is a one pan meal !!! who doesn’t like that ???

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Oh, and by the way…I still love my spiralizer…..(slightly obsessed) I know, I know….I am a little bit touched……okay, I am just weird 🙂 .

Okay, time to calm down…….Let’s talk food 🙂

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Prawn and Peppadew Baby Marrow (Zucchini/Courgette) Noodles

Preparation time:  15 minutes

Cooking time:  7 minutes

Total time:  22 minutes

Serves 4

Ingredients:

1 kilogram baby marrow (zucchini/courgette), spiralized

6 peppadews, chopped

1 tablespoon crushed garlic

700 gram prawns, (de-shelled, optional)

1/2 cup white wine

4 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

salt and pepper to taste

a little olive oil

Instructions:

In a large frying pan, heat up the olive oil, just enough for lightly frying the garlic and chopped peppadews. After about a minute, add the prawns and keep tossing them around the pan for about 3 minutes.  Do not over cook them. Season  with salt and pepper to taste, and then remove garlic, peppadews and prawns from the pan, and set aside.

Now, add the wine and the lemon juice.  Allow this to cook for about 2-3 minutes and then add the garlic, peppadews, prawns and the spiralized baby marrows (zucchini/courgette) noodles.  Stir around constantly to ensure everything gets mixed through nicely and heats up.

Serve immediately with wedges of lemon.

Enjoy 🙂

 

Spring Rolls

295Spring Rolls are a real treat in my home.  They are something I love but just don’t do often enough.  I have no idea why, maybe it’s because they are a little time-consuming, but that shouldn’t matter as they are so worth the wait! Maybe it’s because they are fried in oil.  I am not keen on frying and really don’t enjoy all the fat splattering around, although I must say I have semi alleviated that problem with newspaper.  (Hubby’s idea….genius !) Yip, place newspaper around the stove top by the plates to absorb the fat splatter :-), but I still don’t like frying .  I haven’t figured out if baking them would be equally as tasty ….probably not, how could they be…Baked Spring Rolls???….Really ??? No… Never the less, what with the time aspect, and the fat aspect, and the near fire aspect….yes, the newspaper was placed too closely the plate, and the flame from the gas….need I say more….(yeah, we have fun in my kitchen 🙂 … it was soooo worth it !!! Oh, and I did my usual….pig out with them, so I guess I will be sorted for a month or two.

This Spring Rolls recipe came from a magazine which I cut out and saved many years ago. I am not sure which magazine it came from, I just remember a pile of various magazines, and my mom and I going through them saving whichever recipe we liked.

I have changed this recipe slightly to suit my tastes. What I love about Spring Rolls is the veggies, which I have added more than the original recipe stated. You can also change the veggies to your liking.  I added some finely, chopped leftover chicken this time, but this recipe can be kept strictly vegetarian as well.

244Even though the Spring Rolls are deep-fried, they literally cook so quickly. There is something about that crispy crunch of the fried thin pastry that just cracks in your mouth and then the crunchy veggies …. yum….

I have included two dipping sauces which I usually make, but also a sweet chilli sauce also tastes divine with these Spring Rolls.

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Spring Rolls

Preparation time:  40 plus minutes *

Cooking time:  30 minutes

Total time:  1 hour ten minutes *

Makes 24

Ingredients:

1 cup finely shredded green cabbage

1 cup finely shredded red/purple cabbage

2/3 medium-sized carrots, sliced finely, length-ways

2/3 green chillies, chopped finely (and seeds taken out)

1 medium-sized onion, chopped finely

6 spring onions, chopped finely

4 cloves garlic, chopped finely

2 red peppers, sliced finely, length-ways

2 cups bean sprouts

1 cup finely chopped chicken (optional)

salt and pepper to taste

24 spring roll wraps

vegetable oil for deep-frying

Instructions:

Take Spring Roll pastry squares out from the freezer.

Put some water in a saucer or small bowl, for dampening the pastry edges, and set aside

Place all the sliced and chopped vegetables in a large bowl and stir fry in a wok until slightly done, but still crisp.

Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Now, place a Spring Roll pastry square directly in front of you on a board, turning it so its like a diamond shape with the top corner at the top.

Using a tablespoon, scoop a spoon of veggies from the bowl and place on the Spring Roll pastry square, at the lower tip, but just slightly above the corner, allowing enough pastry to fold upwards. Fold the bottom corner over the filling.

Dampen the edges of the pastry square with a little water, and then fold in the left side, this will overlap the bottom folded over pastry slightly. Then fold the right side, this will overlap the bottom folded over pastry slightly.  The left and right corners of the pastry will practically join at the tips. Then, roll up to form a spring roll. Set aside, and continue till the quantity you are wanting to do is complete.

Deep fry the Spring Rolls for a few minutes until they are golden brown.  You will need to do them it batches.

Drain the deep-fried Spring Rolls on kitchen towel paper.

Serve immediately.

Dipping sauces:  These Dipping Sauces can be doubled up in quantity and can be stored in sterilised jars in the refrigerator for a few days.

Easy Thai Dipping Sauce (makes 1/2 cup)

Ingredients:

2 medium-sized garlic cloves

15 milliliters (1 tablespoon) fresh ginger

30 milliliters (2 tablespoons) raw honey

60 milliliters (1/4 cup) soy sauce

125 milliliters  rice wine vinegar

30 milliliters (2 tablespoons) sesame oil

De-seeded chilli, chopped up finely (optional)

Instructions:

Finely chop the garlic cloves

Grate the fresh ginger

Add all the ingredients in a bowl and whisk together until they are well combined.

Thai Chilli Dipping Sauce (makes 1/2 cup)

Ingredients:

3 fresh red chillies, finely chopped

2 medium-sized garlic cloves, finely chopped

62.5 milliliters (1/4 cup) brown sugar

125 milliliters (1/2 cup) water

2.5 milliliters (1/2 teaspoon) salt

7.5 milliliters (1 1/2 teaspoons) cornflour mixed with 30 milliliters (1 tablespoons) of water.

Instructions:

Put all the ingredients into a saucepan and bring to the boil, stirring occasionally.  Once boiling point has reached, reduce the heat slightly and thicken with the cornflour and water mixture.

Enjoy 🙂

*  Preparation time will differ, depending on quantity and also with the Spring Roll Pastry Squares, sometimes I battle to separate them.

* Cooking time may differ, again depending on quantity.

NB*  If you don’t want this to be strictly vegetarian, feel free to add chopped meat of your choice.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vegetable Toast

040Now Vegetable Toast may sound a bit odd, but really, it is not.  I did this on Saturday. It is a lovely vegetarian light meal and is perfect for a quick, easy lunch.  It literally can be thrown together in a flash, and it is healthy.

I came across the basics of this recipe years ago from a magazine pullout.  It somehow always intrigued me.  I have tweaked it a bit and all I can say is that it is amazingly scrumptious.

This too, can be considered not only vegetarian but vegan if you choose not to use the cheese…but I just had to use the cheese, I love cheese, I am a cheese addict, although I must admit I was a bit mean with my cheese helping on this little toasts! (sorry family)

Do not be alarmed with the quantity of the baby spinach.  Mine literally towered over my large frying pan.  If the leaves fall, just pick them up and put them on the top of the mountain of baby spinach leaves, and gradually stir through while cooking . Trust me, as the baby spinach leaves cook, they will wilt, and all will be fine.

036Oh, and on the cheese matter, I think if you used your favourite cheese, that would be great.  I just had a light cheddar on hand, so used that, but feel free to go crazy if you are not counting calories (I never count calories…way too much trouble).

Also, any bread can be used.  I used a continental bread this time, and a few slices of gluten free bread for my daughter.

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Vegetable Toast

Preparation time:  8 minutes

Cooking time:  approximately 10 minutes

Total time:  18 minutes

Ingredients:

a little coconut oil to saute the veggies

1 medium sized garlic clove

1 large white onion

250 grams baby mushrooms

175 grams baby spinach leaves

8 slices of continental bread

100 -125 grams light cheddar cheese, grated

Freshly ground salt and pepper

Instructions:

With a pestle and mortar, crush the garlic.

Roughly chop the onion, and set aside.

Wipe the mushrooms, with a dry cloth and then slice thinly.

Put the grill on high.

In a large frying pan, heat up the coconut oil and saute the onion and garlic together for approximately 2-3 minutes.

Add the thinly sliced mushrooms and cook for a further 3 minutes.

By this time the onions, garlic and mushrooms will be soft.

Add the baby spinach to the onion, garlic and mushrooms.  It may seem a lot, but as the baby spinach cooks, it will soften and wilt.

Now, place the bread slices on a baking tray and put them under the grill. Watch these carefully to prevent the bread from burning.  When the one side is done, turn them over and toast the other side until a nice golden brown. Remove from the grill.

Place the vegetable mixture on the grilled toast and sprinkle some grated cheese over the vegetables.

Season well to taste.

Return the toast with the vegetables on, to the grill and allow to cook until the cheese has melted and is bubbly.

Serve immediately and if necessary, add some extra freshly ground salt and pepper.

Enjoy 🙂

 

 

 

Peanut Butter Fettucine

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This is a favourite of mine for those meatless meals.  Apart from it being super quick to throw together in less than twenty minutes, it tastes amazing too.  For me, this is such a unique dish.  I mean, I would never have dreamt that Peanut Butter combined with curry powder would taste so amazing.  Peanut Butter is a firm favourite for so many, but who would have thought of introducing it to a dinner meal? Come to think of it Peanut Butter is used for some chicken dishes and it works well with Thai meals and as a dipping sauce….hmmmmm peanut butter rocks !

I have had this recipe for about twenty years and it is one I never tire from.  I have tweaked it a bit over the years, and it is easily tweakable (ha ha is that even a word?)…. Anyway, I would suggest if you are going to make it, to sick to the quantities stated, and then if you love it but want it hotter perhaps, then next time you make it, add more curry powder to the mix.

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The hubby loves it hot, so I tend to end up making two pots. His, I increase the curry powder quantity, instead of flat spoonfuls, the spoonfuls become heaped spoonfuls. Then in the other pot I make a milder one for myself and the girls. The recipe below is the milder version.  I just find that the milder version has a pleasant curry taste, it is not overpowering at all.  I thoroughly enjoy the creaminess of the sauce and the slight ‘kick’ this dish has.  I always get my curry powder mix from Gorima’s Spice Shop, they have all the various spices and mix up a curry mix accordingly to your liking.  I always ask for it hot, and they never disappoint.

I also, am into cooking with fresh ingredients wherever possible, as I am not a fan of preservatives and colourants but feel free to use a tin of tomatoes instead of the fresh tomatoes.  Also if you use a tin of the tomato and onion mix, then instead of chopping up the mentioned two onions, just chop up one. I also used a Gluten/Wheat Free Fettucine but any Fettucine or Spaghetti would be just as tasty. I used 100% natural Peanut Butter, but any Peanut Butter would be just as great. You see how versatile this recipe is….its amazing. 🙂

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Peanut Butter Fettucine

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 5 minutes

Total time: 15 minutes

Serves 4

Ingredients

2 medium sized onions

1 garlic clove

2 or 3 tablespoons of oil (vegetable, coconut or olive oil)

2 1/2 flat teaspoons curry powder

1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

3 very heaped tablespoons natural crunchy peanut butter (smooth peanut butter is fine)

410 grams fresh chopped tomatoes (or a tin of chopped tomatoes or if you have a tin of onion and tomato mix, only chop up one onion instead of the two as stated above)

salt and pepper to taste

For the fettucine:

225 grams fettucine

approximately 700 millilitres of boiling hot water

dash of salt

Instructions:

Chop up the onion/s into small pieces.

Chop up the garlic clove.

In a medium sized pot, heat up the oil on a medium heat and saute’ the onions and garlic together.

Then, once they are done, add the curry powder, lemon juice, peanut butter and tomatoes.

Stir together until well combined over the medium heat.

Do a little tasting and see if any salt or pepper are needed.

Meanwhile, prepare to cook the fettucine.

When the fettucine is done, serve with the peanut butter mixture.

This dish is great hot, so serve immediately.

Garnish with toasted/roasted peanuts if desired.

Enjoy 🙂

NB*  This meal is freezer friendly.  I often make a double batch and freeze whatever is left over.  This is ideal for me, especially on my lazy days.

When you do heap the spoonfuls of Peanut Butter, depending on your Peanut Butter, you may find that the Peanut Butter mixture is quite thick, this you can thin out slightly either by adding more tomato, a little tomato sauce and or tomato paste.

Also, just double check at the end if any salt and pepper is needed.

 

Bacon, Tomato and Halloumi Bake

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Lunch time always tends to baffle me over weekends.  I am so used to just having a good old salad for lunch during the week and often just feel like something different on a weekend.  Anyway, after a lot of pondering and wondering… I decided to do a dish with one of my favourite cheeses’…. Halloumi :-). Why not, it was the weekend ! …. Any excuse to have Halloumi ! Really, I can’t get enough of Halloumi, whether it is baked or fried, I will take it anyway !

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This dish is particularly easy.  I came across it in a cooking magazine several years ago, and with a few odd changes here and there it has become a firm favourite.  It is more of a throw all together quick dish, just my kind of dish and perfect for a lunch or brunch.

I did use a Gluten Free and Wheat Free Brown Bread in this dish, purely due to the fact that I have had my eldest daughter on a Gluten Free and Wheat Free way of eating for several years now, and I tend to be following suit….

This dish would be amazing though with a Ciabatta bread or even a sour dough bread, so if you are not Gluten and Wheat intolerant, try either of them, I am sure you won’t be disappointed.  Ciabatta bread crisps up so nicely once in the oven, and that added crunch just will take this dish to another level of perfection.

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Bacon, Tomato and Halloumi Bake

Preparation time:  15 minutes

Cooking time:  30 minutes

Total time:  45 minutes

Serves 4

Ingredients:

500 grams diced bacon bits

500 grams Red Cherry Tomatoes *

300 grams Halloumi cheese *

1 Ciabatta Bread, broken into bite size pieces (approximately 2 cups) or a bread of your choice

3 tablespoons Avocado Oil or Olive Oil

bunch of fresh basil leaves

For the dressing

1 tablespoon of honey *

1 garlic clove

1/2 cup balsamic vinegar

2 tablespoons of olive oil

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 220 degrees C/ 525 degrees F

Start cooking bacon pieces till partially cooked just to give them a head start. (I started mine off in the microwave)

Slice the Halloumi into slices, about a few millilitres thick and set aside.

Crush the garlic clove and set aside for the dressing.

Once the bacon is slightly done (not crisp) as it will crisp up in the oven, it will be time to start assembling the ingredients.

In an oven proof dish (I used a square one, approximately  22 x 22 centimetres/8.5 x 8.5 inches in size) place the bacon, tomatoes, Halloumi cheese and bread.  Toss gently, and pour over the avocado oil or olive oil.

Place oven proof dish into the oven and allow to cook for about 30 minutes. Watch the bread, that it doesn’t crisp up too much and burn (this will depend on the actual bread you are using.)

Whilst everything is cooking, place all the dressing ingredients together and shake well.

Once the bacon is crisp, the tomatoes have wrinkled and cooked, and the Halloumi slightly golden brown on the edges and the bread perfect, take the oven proof dish out of the oven.

Serve immediately and place basil leaves on.  This is not great just for colour but adds a great flavour with the tomatoes.  Sprinkle with the dressing. *

Enjoy 🙂

*  Any red cherry tomatoes will do. The size may differ, but that will be fine.

*  I used Raw Honey for the dressing, runny honey will blend a lot easier.

*  You may have some extra dressing left, depending on how much each person likes on their meal.

 

Marinated Fillet of Beef

 

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I found this recipe in a Your Family Magazine probably five years ago or more. This marinated fillet of beef is probably one of my favourites.  The combination of the sweet chilli sauce and the fresh herbs, just adds such an amazing touch to the beef….something different.

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I made my own home-made sweet chilli sauce last week, and that sauce is just absolutely perfect for this meal.  The two just go hand in hand with one another.

I know this recipe may look complicated, but it really isn’t.  I would strongly suggest having the fillet of beef marinate over night if possible, then once that is done it is plain sailing.

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Marinated Fillet of Beef

Preparation time:  25 minutes

Marinating time:  Several hours or overnight

Total time:  35 minutes

Serves 4-6 people

Ingredients:

1.2 kg fillet of beef

For the marinade:

3-4 medium sized garlic cloves

1/4 cup (80 ml) soy sauce

2 tablespoons (30 ml) raw honey *

Salt and Pepper

2 tablespoons (30 ml) olive oil

1/3 cup (80 ml) sweet chilli sauce

2 large handfuls of fresh herbs of your choice (for example thyme, parsley, chives, origanum)

Instructions:

Firstly place the fillet of beef in an oven-proof flat dish.

Then prepare the marinade by crushing and chopping the garlic cloves and setting aside in a separate bowl.

Then add the soy sauce and honey to the garlic .

Pour this mixture over the fillet of beef and turn the beef over on all sides so that the marinade coats the beef generously.

Using cling wrap, tightly cover the oven-proof dish with the fillet of beef and place in the refrigerator for several hours, turning the fillet of beef periodically.

When ready to cook, preheat the oven to 190 degrees Celsius /375  degrees Fahrenheit.

Meanwhile, finely chop the herbs, removing the stems from the thyme and origanum.  The stalks of the parsley can be chopped and used. Once all chopped, set aside.

Then, take the fillet of beef out from the oven-proof dish and scrape any excess marinade off the fillet of beef.  Do not throw this away, instead return it to the balance of marinade in the oven-proof dish.

Season the fillet of beef with salt and pepper.

Sear the fillet of beef on all sides over a medium to high heat.

Once seared, return the fillet of beef to the oven-proof dish with the remaining marinade.

Top the fillet of beef with the olive oil and bake for 20-25 minutes.

Baste the fillet of beef occasionally throughout the cooking process to keep it moist at all times.

Once the fillet of beef is cooked, take it out of the oven and let it rest.

Then rub the sweet chilli sauce all over the fillet of beef.

Place the chopped herbs on a chopping board and roll the fillet of beef over the chopped herbs.

Slice the fillet of beef as desired, and serve with either mashed potato, baked potato, chips, salad or vegetables.

Enjoy 🙂

*  You can use any honey to your liking.

*  I prefer to marinate over-night.

*  Every oven is different, so that is a guide  for a medium/rare fillet of beef.

*  Remember that the fillet of beef will still cook whilst it is resting out of the oven until it cools.

Baby Spinach and Pepper Frittata

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I am so grateful for the cooler weather today.  Don’t get me wrong I love the sun, but now and then welcome a cooler day especially when it has been so hot.

I had great plans today of all the things I wanted to do, but I have a feeling that not too much is going to be accomplished.  I just am in a relaxed frame of mind  and feel like taking things in my stride for a change.  (no real harm in that, is there?)

So here I am , sitting in my lounge, alongside two of my cats, Taylor and Dexter, drinking green tea and writing this post.  I thought I would share today my frittata recipe with you.  I love frittata’s, they are just so simple to make and best of all you can put anything in them !  This frittata is filled with goodness and all health.  I decided on vegetarian. I just had to, as the last several days I have been eating….lets say more ‘of what I should not be eating’. Yes…I am feeling a bit guilty, but it is fine…I will just eat loads of vegetables and attach myself to the treadmill.

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This frittata is filled only with a couple of vegetables, baby spinach which I love and peppers.  I usually like to use at least three different colours of peppers, but only had two in the fridge.  I enjoy the different colours of the peppers, and apart from the taste, they make the frittata look pretty 🙂  a clove of garlic which is also so good on the health aspect and loads of eggs.  If you are not keen on the garlic, you can leave it out, its really up to you.

My vegetarian frittata cooks for 3o minutes in the oven, and it rises ! But its okay, once it is nice and golden brown take it out of the oven.  Once it cools, it will flatten.  This frittata is so soft and succulent it practically melts in your mouth. It is not only great for breakfast but is ideal for any meal at any time of day.  For a light dinner, just add salad.

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Baby Spinach and Pepper Frittata

Preparation time:  8 minutes

Cooking time:  30 minutes

Total time:  38 minutes

Serves 8-10 depending on size of slices

Ingredients:

1 large onion, chopped

1 large red pepper, chopped

1 large green pepper, chopped

1 garlic clove, crushed

Coconut oil for frying

10 extra large/jumbo free range eggs

2 handfuls of baby spinach leaves, chopped

1 1/2 teaspoons of chopped fresh parsley *

1 1/2 teaspoons of chopped fresh thyme *

(or 1 tablespoon (3 teaspoons) of any mixed fresh herbs) substitute for dried herbs will be 1 teaspoon only). *

Salt and Pepper to taste

Instructions:

Preheat oven at 180 degrees Celsius / 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Saute’ the onion, peppers and garlic clove with a little coconut oil in a frying pan.

Once done take the frying pan off the stove and set aside.

In a medium sized bowl, lightly beat all the eggs with a fork or a hand whisk.

Add the onions, peppers, garlic, baby spinach herbs and spices into the medium sized bowl (with the eggs) and mix to combine using a metal spoon.

Transfer into a well greased oven proof dish (approximately 20 cm x 20 cm or 8″ x 8″) and place in oven for 30 minutes or until golden brown.

The frittata will rise in the middle.

Once taken out from the oven, allow to cool in the oven-proof dish and cut accordingly.

Enjoy 🙂

 

*  I use a Spray ‘n Cook for greasing

*  Feel free to increase the herbs and spices to your liking