The weather these days is just so beautiful it’s a crime to be indoors… cherry blossom and greenery are flourishing wherever I look… Hot weather causes my body to gain an inclination towards very fresh ingredients that are full of flavour, and colors that emulate the same energy and vibrance of a bright sunny day.
So as you know from my previous post about having no kitchen I have quite a limited repertoire of ingredients and tools with which to fashion a meal… for today’s challenge I chose the panini grill and rice cooker to pull together a meal out of
– Baby new potatoes
– An aubergine
– Mozzarella cheese
– Fresh rocket leaves and mixed baby leaf salad
– Olive oil
– Smoked paprika/crushed chilli(/both), himalayan salt, cracked pepper
– A jar of red pesto
—> and hey presto, I made this. Scroll down for the method… 🙂
1) Turn on the grill so it’s nice and hot to receive the vegetables.
2) Turn on the rice cooker with about 1.5 cups of boiled water in it and add washed baby potatoes to the steaming tray- this means you waste less time waiting for the water to boil and the potatoes can cook faster. (YEAH! TIME-EFFICIENT COOKING!)
3) Meanwhile slice courgette, aubergine into 1/4″ pieces and toss in a bowl containing about 4 tbsp olive oil, salt, pepper, and crushed chilli – I used about 1/2 tsp.. although feel free to modify this according to your taste. Add these to the hot grill and cook for about 15 minutes.
4) The vegetables and potatoes will finish cooking around the same time so now get your plates ready and tip out about 1/2 a 190g jar of red pesto into the same bowl you tossed the vegetables in olive oil… now add the grilled vegetables and potatoes and toss through so the pesto coats them evenly.
5) Serve up some salad leaves in a plate and top with some chunks of fresh mozzarella and place the pesto-ed vegetables on the side. The moisture and intensity of flavours from the pesto and grilled vegetables are balanced by the ‘naked’– (why say undressed when I can be more provocative?) leaves so you don’t risk them being overpowered by a dressing…
This recipe is so healthy, and satisfying… and when you finally have to come indoors to eat, you’ll find a little bit of sun in every plateful!
Scorecard so far:
CSAB- 2 | No kitchen challenge – 0
[BOOM! BRING ON THE NEXT MEAL]
SIDENOTE: Cooking for yourself can skew your judgement – usually because being hungry makes you fuss less and…well you’re hungry… so you just want to eat something… ANYTHING!!! However, today I realised a good meal makes you smile as you eat it.