Saturday, October 03, 2009

A Vegetarian Feast for Four!

Garlic & Sage Marinated Antipasto

6 artichoke hearts, halved & well drained
200g green & black olives
200g cherry tomatoes, halved
4 tbsp fruity olive oil
15 sage leaves
3 cloves garlic, sliced
cracked black pepper
2 tbsp white wine vinegar
150g fetta cheese, sliced
crispbread biscuits or crusty bread, to serve

Combine artichokes, olives & tomatoes.
Place oil & sage in small saucepan over medium heat & cook for 1 min.
Add garlic & pepper & cook for further 2 min or until sage is crisp.
Remove from heat & stir through vinegar.
Pour over artichoke mixture & stand for 5 min before serving with fetta & bread.

Simple Leek & Ricotta Tarts

500g fresh ricotta cheese
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
2 eggs
600g ready-prepared puff pastry
1 leek, trimmmed & finely sliced
45g butter, melted
2 tsp thyme leaves
sea salt & cracked black pepper

Preheat oven to 180°C.
Place ricotta, parmesan & eggs in bowl & whisk until smooth.
Roll out pastry on lightly floured surface until 3mm thick.
Alternatively, defrost pastry sheets & use lightly beaten egg to "stick" sheets together to get required thickness.
Cut into 4 x 15cm squares & place on baking trays lined with non-stick paper.
Spread ricotta mixture over pastry squares leaving 2cm border.
Place leek on top of ricotta mixture & brush with butter.
Sprinkle with thyme, salt & pepper & bake for 25-30 min or until leek is golden.
Serve with fennel & parsley salad (below).

Fennel & Parsley Salad

4 baby fennel, trimmed & thinly sliced
2 cups flat-leaf parsley leaves
1/4 cup orange juice
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp seeded mustard
sea salt & cracked black pepper

Place fennel & parsley in serving bowl & toss to combine.
Place orange juice, oil, mustard, salt & pepper in another bowl & whisk to combine.
Pour over salad & serve with tarts (above).

Raspberry-Spiked Chocolate Brownies

Makes 16

200g dark chocolate, chopped
250g butter
1 3/4 cups brown sugar
4 eggs
1 1/3 cups plain flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/3 cup cocoa, sifted
1 1/2 cup raspberries, fresh or frozen (no need to defrost)

Preheat oven to 180°C.
Place chocolate & butter in small saucepan over low heat & stir until melted & smooth.
Place in bowl with sugar & eggs.
Sift over flour, baking powder & cocoa & mix to combine.
Pour into 23cm greased square cake tin lined with non-stick baking paper.
Top mixture with raspberries & bake for 30-35 min or until set.
Serve warm or cold with thick cream or vanilla ice cream.

And a good breakfast smoothie...

Raspberry Yoghurt Smoothie

Makes 4

2 cups cranberry juice
2 cups vanilla yoghurt
2 cups frozen raspberries
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 tbsp honey

Roughly blend all ingredients together & serve in chilled glasses. Too easy!

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