Kataifi Prawns (serves 3-4 as an entree)

This simple and quick recipe is great for entrees or just a light snack.

It is healthier than tempura prawns or prawn cocktails as it does not involve any frying and looks interesting on the plate.

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Ingredients:

  • 1 packet kataifi, kept out for a few hours until it is room temperature
  • 500gr prawns
  • 1 egg
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Seasoning of your choice (I used an African-style rub mix)

Method:

1. Heat oven to 200C.

2. Peel and de-vein prawns, leaving the tails on.

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3. Take some kataifi out gently and put it in a small bowl. Separate some of the strands so it is easier to work with.

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4. Beat the egg with a fork and add salt, pepper and your choice of seasoning.

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5. Lay the kataifi strands out in a long line. Place the prawn at the top of the strand and roll it down to the bottom until covered. Place on an oiled tray.

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6. Once all prawns are covered in kataifi, place tray in the oven and bake for about 15 minutes, or until pastry is golden and crispy.

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Enjoy!

Zaatar Chips & Beetroot & Feta Dip

If you’re looking for a quick but DELICIOUS appetiser to serve to your guests, then look no further because I have the perfect one!

I made this delicious zaatar bread and beetroot feta dip for my birthday lunch and everyone seemed to really enjoy it!

It’s pretty easy to make, here’s how:

ZAATAR BREAD

Ingredients:

  • 5 Lebanese breads
  • Olive oil
  • Zaatar seasoning *(you can get it online- try Sam’s kitchen- or from Middle Eastern grocers)
  • Salt

Method:

1.Preheat oven to 180C

2. Mix about 1/4 cup of zaatar seasoning with about 1/4 cup of olive oil

3. Spread over Lebanese bread using a brush.

4. Sprinkle with salt.

5. Bake in oven for about 8 minutes.

Note: remember to keep an eye on it as it will burn easily!

6. Break up the zaatar using your hands (scissors won’t work!), into corn chip sized pieces.

7. Serve with beetroot & feta dip (see below).

BEETROOT & FETA DIP

Ingredients:

  • 1 small tin sliced beetroot
  • 1 tin chickpeas
  • 100g feta cheese (I used Danish)
  • 1/3 cup cashew nuts (unsalted)
  • 2-3 Tbsp olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Method: 

1. Add beetroot and chickpeas to a food processor and mix until combined.

2. Add cashews and feta cheese and blend again until just combined (you want it to be somewhat chunky).

3. Add some olive oil and salt and pepper (to taste), then process for a little longer.

4. Serve with zaatar bread, carrot or celery sticks and other crackers.

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Corn & Zucchini Fritters (serves 4)

These delicious fritters are easy to make and perfect for breakfast, brunch or lunch.

Topped with fresh or smoked salmon and a dollop or sour cream, they were tasty and something I hadn’t tried making before. Even my younger brother who tends to be a bit of a fussy eater enjoyed them.

I adapted this recipe from the Taste website.

Ingredients:

  • 2/3 cup plain flour
  • 1/2 cup self-raising flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2/3 cup of corn kernels
  • 2/3 cup grated zucchini
  • 1 cup grated cheese
  • 40g butter
  • 100g smoked salmon
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • Salt

Method:

1. Sift flours into a bowl.

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2. Combine eggs and milk in a jug and whisk lightly. Gradually whisk the egg mixture into the flour until it forms a smooth batter

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3. Add corn, zucchini and cheese.

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4. Stir to combine then add a little salt, cover and set aside for about 20 minutes.

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5. Melt a teaspoon of butter in a large, non-stick pan over high. Pour a few tablespoons of batter into the pan for each fritter.

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6. Cook on each side until golden and cooked through. Then remove from pan and drain on paper towels. Repeat until all batter is used, adding a teaspoon of butter for each new batch.

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7. Place a fritter on a plate and top with 1 tablespoon of sour cream, some sliced salmon and extra cheese.

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Pineapple Salsa

I made this side for our family’s Christmas dinner and it went down a treat. Perfect for the hot Australian summer!

I found the recipe through pinterest at mylittlecelebration.com

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Ingredients:

  • 1 green chilli, finely diced
  • 1 pineapple, diced
  • 2.5 tomatoes, diced
  • 1 red onion, finely diced,
  • 1/2 capsicum, diced (I added this myself)
  • 1/3 bunch parsley, roughly chopped
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • The juice from cutting the pineapple
  • Salt and pepper to season

Method:

So easy- all you do is mix all the ingredients together, chill and serve!

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Cheesy Broccolini Bake

While most kids had to be forced to eat vegetables, I was one of the few who never had to be told twice. I’ve never had an issue with eating my greens and despite the fact that I have a sweet tooth, I love fruit and veg.

It is even better knowing that they are healthy as I like to think that they counteract all the junk food that I also enjoy!

Broccolini is a brand of baby broccoli, owned by Perfection Fresh Australia. I was provided with some samples for a recipe that I’ve been wanting to try out. Broccolini is perfect for this dish because, unlike potatoes, Broccolini is not as starchy and dense. It is also better than regular Broccoli as the longer stalks mean the Broccoli won’t get soggy in the cheesy sauce.

Ingredients: 

  • 2 bunches fresh Broccolini
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/4 onion, thinly sliced
  • 200grams butter
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3/4 cup plain flour
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 100grams Tasty cheese, grated
  • 150grams Mozzarella cheese

Method:

1. Wash Broccolini and steam in a pan of boiling water for about 1-2 minutes or until the Broccolini changes colour to a bright green. When this happens, spread the Broccolini out in an oven-proof dish.

2. In another pan fry garlic and onion with a little butter. Then melt the butter over medium heat.

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Add flour and stir until it is all mixed in. Reduce stove to low and then add milk. Stir in until the mixture is thick and creamy.

4. Turn the stove off and add the Mozzarella cheese to the mixture, stirring until it is incorporated into the cheesy sauce. Season with some salt and pepper.

5. Pour the cheesy sauce over the Broccolini and top with grated Tasty cheese.

6. Place under the grill (on high) and bake for about 5 minutes or until the cheese begins to turn golden.

Greek Salad

This delicious and healthy Greek salad is the perfect side dish for any meal. It is also great on its own!

Ingredients:

  • 2 handfuls of washed lettuce
  • 3 tomatoes or a punnet of cherry tomatoes
  • 1/2 Spanish onion (1 used a brown onion as I didn’t have Spanish ones at the time)
  • 100grams of Danish feta cheese (you can use Greek but I prefer the saltiness  and firmness of the Danish feta)
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1/3 cup of black Kalamata olives (pitted)
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

Method:

1. Cut lettuce into 2cm wide strips and spread out evenly over a large platter.

2. Thinly slice the onion and spread over lettuce.

3. Cut the cucumber into 0.5cm slices and spread over the onion and lettuce.

4. Cut the tomatoes into 8 wedges per tomato (or in half if using cherry tomatoes) and sprinkle over the other vegetables.

5. Top salad with the olives and cubes of feta cheese (about 2cm x 2 cm)

6. Drizzle olive oil over the top of the salad and season generously with freshly ground salt and pepper.

7. Enjoy!

Tuna & Mixed Bean Pasta Salad

This healthy and delicious pasta salad is perfect for lunch and will give you plenty of protein to keep you going.

Ingredients:

  • 250g pasta shells
  • 1 tomato
  • 1/2 cucumber
  • 1/4 onion
  • 200g canned tuna
  • About 1/4-1/3 cup of light mayonnaise
  • 1/2 can of mixed beans ( I used 4 bean mix)
  • Pepper and salt to season

Method:

1. Cook pasta according to directions on pack.

2. Chop up onion, tomato, and cucumber.

Tip: You can add a handful of fresh parsley, grated carrot or whatever other vegetables you have on hand.

3. Rinse and drain beans, and drain tuna.

4. In a large bowl mix the pasta tomato, onion, cucumber, beans and tuna.

5. Add mayo and stir well, then season with salt and pepper.

Serve chilled.