Friday, 21 November 2008

Pesto, Tomato & Feta Sandwich

Yum!. My favouritest sandwich ever! I apologise in advance, this is a quick post, I'm in the middle of cooking so need to go back into the kitchen.

Anyways back to the sandwich, yum! i had this for my lunch today, so simple and quick to put together. Within 5 mins my lunch was ready. And that's including time to put together some dessert.

I think the reason I love this sandwich so much is because of it's simplicity, and I don't just mean the simplicity of making it. No, I mean the simplicity of the flavours and the beautiful taste you get from it.

Now, how to put it together, before i start drooling over the keyboard just thinking about it.

2 slices of Granary bread -I use Warburtons, because i love the combination of nuts and seeds. (You have to use granary. If you've never tried it before, it might take a little getting used to but I'm telling you, you'll love it. If you really can't stand it, then please wholemeal at least. The last resort- white bread.
1 Tbsp of Homemade Pesto.
4 Slices of Tomato
25g Feta Cheese (That's a small piece around 2" by 1").

1. Toast the bread on both side - I would advise you only do this if your eating straight away, otherwise the bread will just go soggy. I toast mine because i love the contrasting sensations of hot and cold in my mouth.
2. Spread pesto on one side of the bread.
3. Place tomato in each corner.
4. Crumble feta on top of tomatoes.
5. Place second slice of bread on top.
6. Slice.
7. Your done!

Now dessert. 'Dessert for lunch' i hear you say, gasping in horror. 'Yes', i say. 'dessert for lunch', smiling to one's self. 'What may that be' i hear you say. 'Grapes!' I say.

Unfortunately, I'm no wonder woman. I can't rustle up lunch AND dessert in 5 mins. Some don't classify fruit as a dessert, some do. I fall into the latter category. I think for lunch, fruit is a perfect accompaniment. When at work, i always, always have some fruit for lunch. If I've forgotten mine, there's always someone at work who has some, and is willing to share.

These grapes were so lovely and sweet, so it satisfied my sugar craving and kept hunger locked up till dinner!

I've gone a little bit arty with my pic today, just playing around with photoshop a bit. See what it could do. I'm hoping photoshop will help my lack of natural light problem and make my pictures more fun and pleasing to the eye.
Did i say a quick post? Oops!

Monday, 17 November 2008


Guacamole or Guac, which it's more commonly known as apparently comes from Spain. See I've always been under the impression that it was Mexican, but apparently not. I'm not sure the source that it's from Spain is correct, but wherever it's from it sure is yummylicious!

When i first tried guacamole i hated it. I hated it so much that i spat it out, guess who made it? Tesco's. My dad loved avocados, he liked it pureed with some cream in it. So i decided to try it, and guess what? I loved it, that beautiful creamy,nutty, buttery flavour was just so yum! And the health benefits should make you love it just for the benefits sake. Although it has a high fat content, it contains the good fat (monosaturated). It also contains 60% more potassium than bananas, it has more fiber then any other fruit and is packed with vitamins B, E and K!. See i told you it was good for you.

Ever since finding new love for avocados, I've been scouring the web for a good traditional guacamole recipe which is simple but del'ish. i finally found one the other day and after reading the reviews i knew it was the 'one'.

Here it is: Simply Recipes -Perfect Guacamole.

I pretty much followed this recipe to the tee. I only added one chilli as i thought it might overpower the flavour, i thought one was perfect.

Tip: keep the stone to your avocados. Once you have finished making your guac, if your not going to eat it right away, place the stones in the guac, and cover tightly with cling film. if you don't do this the flesh will oxidize and turn brown quickly, which isn't too appealing.

So what can you do with it? It's traditionally eaten as a dip with tortilla crisps or added on top of tacos. I had mine today spread in a baguette with some tomatoes, cucumbers, lettuce and feta. Yum!


I love love love pesto. Pesto pasta, pesto drizzled over salads, pesto in sandwiches, you name it, i love it. One problem however, traditional pesto is made with Parmesan cheese, and that's the way i always ate it. However i found out recently that Parmesan cheese contains animal rennet and being a Muslim, that would make it haraam. There are different opinions on this matter, however, my view on the matter is: where in doubt, leave it. The fact that it contains animal rennet also rules it out for vegetarians. Unfortunately restaurants still advertise some foods containing pesto as suitable for vegetarians, when it clearly is not and i doubt very much that they omit the Parmesan as it's one of the main ingredients.

I would usually substitute the cheese, but I've found that most cheeses which, would be suitable also contain rennet. So I've decided to omit the cheese altogether.

The verdict: i honestly don't miss the cheese, it tastes lighter and just as good. I've tweaked it a little from traditional pesto recipes, to suit my preferences and reduce the cals. But please feel free to tweak it and make it your own.


2 Handfulls of Basil
1 Handfull of Corriander- I didn't have enough basil
1 Tbsp Toasted Pine Nut Kernals
1 Garlic Clove
1/4 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Tbsp Lemon Juice
Salt & Pepper to taste

1. Toast the pine nut kernals. This draws out the oils and brings out the flavour. You can either put these in the oven or you can put them in a frying pan and quickly toast them. I do the latter to cut time.

2. In a chopper or blender add the basil, corriander (If using), garlic, lemon and a little bit of the oil. Blitz it all together.

3. Slowly add the rest of the oil, if you add it all at once it may cause your pesto to split. Adding the oil slowly allows the oil and the rest of the ingredients to be incorporated together.

4. Season to taste

5. Your done!

Tip: You can substitute some of the oil for chicken stock. Thank you Dani. I tried this and i have to agree with Dani, it tastes better then just the oil.

So what can you do with it? Anything! Okay, maybe not anything but pesto is so versatile. You can add it to you're pastas, drizzle over salads, spread in sandwichs, which is my personal favourite, i'll be posting a recipe of that soon.


Sunday, 16 November 2008


Okay, so i haven't blogged as soon as i thought i would.

A few reasons for this: Too much going on at home and unfortunately i haven't learnt how to prioritise between work, home and blogging. Fortunately however, I'm learning and now my comps fixed my laptop won't be hogged by my brothers and i can finally start blogging.

My second reason: Pictures. I am as you might already know or might come to find out a bit of a perfectionist. After reading blogs over the past year and looking at the beautiful pictures posted, i have come to realise the best pictures are the ones taken in natural light, which is a bit of a no-brainer. Unfortunately winter has almost descended upon us and by the time i get home, when i cook most of my meals, it's too dark to take pictures. I haven't really found a solution to this apart from taking pictures at the weekend or my days off. even these aren't too fantastic, but i'm hoping to improve over time.

I have a few recipes i can finally post, not the ones i might have selected as my first recipe post, but if i carry on being picky i'll never end up posting. I ask of you this: Please bear with me. Thank you.

Monday, 18 August 2008

First things First

Blogging is a a relatively new term to me. Yes i had heard of it and i knew it was a big thing but until a few months a go the only blogs i ever read were football blogs (I'll come to that later on). The only food blog i ever read was Dani Spies blog which i accidentally discovered on Youtube, and i have to say i have her to thank for this. It was only last month i discovered she had links on the side for other blogs so i clicked, and as i clicked i discovered more and more blogs. The more i discovered the more amazed and inspired i got. Whilst sitting in my inspired, discovery mode i had a few alarm bells going off in my head saying 'Hey why don't i do one'. I mean why not hey? But what would i write about? Well what do i enjoy doing and thinking about the most? FOOD! Okay that's a lie football and food, but i don't think I'll get too many views droning on about football :)

Now before I go waffling on i think i should tell you a little about myself. To state the obvious: I love cooking!. My style of cooking varies, i cook anything and everything, however coming from an Indian heritage more often then not we cook Indian food at home, but i have a family who are EXTREMELY fussy eaters so I'm limited as too what i can make.

My aim with this blog is to cook new dishes i have never tried before, maybe even force my brothers to eat things they've never tried before. With this aim I'd like to develop my skills as an individual and teach others at the same time. So please feel free to join me on my journey :)