Spinach and Potato Bake

Love what you do, do what you love…

After a long break, I am sitting here staring at the screen thinking of something profound to say. Trying to make a come back, with a bang. However, words fail me! I don’t have an explanation for my absence. I don’t know how long I am back for or how frequently I will post a recipe for you. What I do know, is I love food and as long as I can cook, I will share it with you.

Today’s recipe is a simple, hearty winter warmer. Layers of potato, garlicky spinach, cream and cheese, a perfect matrimony of decadence and nutrition.

Ingredients:  11          Cooking time: 60 minutes

Serves: 4

  • One large bunch of spinach, finely chopped
  • Three medium potatoes, thinly sliced
  • one small onion, finely chopped
  • two to three garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • Two eggs
  • 300ml of cream
  • 250 gms of grated cheddar cheese
  • 125 gms of grated parmesan cheese
  • Two tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • One teaspoon white pepper
  • Salt to taste

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celsius.

Heat oil in a pan. Add onion, once translucent add garlic. Cook until aromatic.

Now add the chopped spinach, season with salt. Once wilted, drain the excess liquid (tip: you can use the liquid as stock in your gravies or pasta sauce).

In a bowl, combine eggs, cream, pepper and salt. Mix well.

Now grease a baking dish with some olive oil. Make a double layer the of the sliced potatoes, then add the spinach mixture and finish with a double layer of potatoes.

Pour the cream and egg batter and finally top it with grated cheese.

Bake in the oven for about 45 minutes or until cooked and golden brown on the top.

I usually serve this with a side of roasted vegetables or a salad. Either way it is lip smackingly delicious.


Shepherds Pie

A hearty wholesome winters delight

I started my blogging journey with great pomp and flair. Trying to take the perfect photo, making sure I use the high appeal hashtags to get lots of likes and comments, checking my stats every few hours to see how it was all tracking, etc. As the months went by this passion started turning into bit of an obsession. The pursuit of perfection got even more intense. On the flip side the number of likes and comments  took a downward turn. The more I watched my posts being less liked, the lesser I was inclined to publish new content.

Life also got busier, I went from being a mother of one to a mother of two. While parenthood is the most beautiful thing in the world, the constant demands it has of you means somewhere, something has to give. For me it was blogging. Days turned into weeks and weeks to months before I knew it, it was over six months since my last post.

Why am I telling you this? Simply because it dawned on me one late evening as I was feeding my newborn and watching my toddler sleep. You must do all that it takes to keep doing things that make you happy and pursue happiness not perfection. Life is too short to care about the camera angle or the perfect photo or about the number of  likes and comments on your social media. What matters is what makes you happy! After all life is a pursuit of happiness. So is this recipe!!!

Don’t get deterred by the list of ingredients. You can use frozen or fresh vegetables, basically whatever you have in the fridge. Enjoy this hearty, wholesome winters delight that may not be a perfect picture but it is a perfect meal. Lip smackingly delicious in every way.

Ingredients:  Cooking time: 45 minutes 

Serves: 4

  1. Two tins of canned brown lentils
  2. One tin of four bean mix
  3. One leek, finely chopped
  4. One small onion, finely chopped
  5. Four to five pods of garlic
  6. One zucchini, chopped
  7. Two parsnips, chopped
  8. Half a bunch of spinach
  9. 1.5 cups of frozen vegetable mix of peas, corn and carrots
  10. 1.5 teaspoon of garam masala
  11. Half a teaspoon of dried chilli flakes
  12. 1.5 teaspoon of dried basil
  13. 250 gms of grated cheddar
  14. 125 gms of grated Parmesan
  15. Salt to season
  16. Black pepper to season
  17. Three tablespoons of olive oil
  18. Two tablespoons of butter

For Mash Potatoes

  1. Six to eight medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
  2.  300ml of milk
  3. Two tablespoons of butter
  4. One cup of grated cheddar

Heat butter and two tablespoons of olive oil in a heavy bottom saucepan. Add garlic, leek and onion. Cook until leek is soft and lightly caramelised.

Add all the vegetables, lentils, beans and spices. Mix well. Season with salt and add a cup of water. Cover the pan and let the lentils and vegetables simmer on a low heat for 15 minutes.

To make mash potatoes, boil potatoes until extremely soft. Drain water and add milk, butter and cheese. Mash the potatoes until smooth.

To assemble the pie in a baking dish add the lentils and vegetables at the bottom. Top this with a layer of mash potatoes. Add grated cheddar and Parmesan on top. Drizzle remaining olive oil on the potatoes ( this will prevent them from drying in the oven.

Place the bake dish under a grill and grill until cheese is caramelised. Your Shepherds pie is ready to serve.

Serve hot along with a simple green side salad and let this hearty winter delight fill your belly and soul with warmth.

Mushroom, Leek and Three Cheese Savoury Pudding

All good things in life are either free or fattening…

I have not met one person till date that does not have leftover bread and they don’t know what to do with it. Particularly in my case where my husband loves bread, we barely get through one loaf and there is another one waiting to be eaten in the pantry.

As a child one of the virtues my parents instilled in me was to never waste anything, food particularly. This virtue has developed my experimental cooking style, I always try and find ways to use everything in my pantry and fridge. Thankfully my husband loves his food as much as I do and is willing to sample my cooking experiments, which most times are successfully and every other time fail.

This recipe is an ode to leftover bread, cheese and veggies in your kitchen. All these handy ingredients will be transformed into a lip smackingly delicious savoury bread pudding. Quick to make and delicious to eat! I would like to add though that this recipe isn’t for the faint hearted. If you love your bread, cream and cheese then this is one tasty treat for you to consider making!

Ingredients: 13    Cooking time: 40 minutes
Serves: 4
  • Four Multigrain bread buns (or any other buns/rolls you have)
  • 100 gms of grated Gruyere cheese
  • 60 gms of  grated Parmesan cheese
  • 75 gms of grated Swiss chesse
  • 300 ml of light cooking cream
  • Two eggs
  • One cup sliced onion
  • Two pods of garlic minced
  • One cup chopped leek
  • One cup sliced mushroom
  • One tea spoon of rosemary leaves
  • Five tablespoons of olive oil
  • Salt to taste

Cut the buns into half and toast them in the oven at about 180 degrees for about five to seven minutes until light brown. Now assemble them in a baking dish greased with some olive oil. If you are using bread slices you will need about 12 slices, three slices for one bun.

In a pan add two tablespoons of olive oil and saute the sliced onion and minced garlic, until caramelised. Add the onion mix to a separate bowl and keep aside. Similarly saute the leek and mushrooms separately with one tablespoon of olive oil each.

To make the sauce in the pan you sauteed the vegetables add 300 ml of cream and stir it, followed by adding all the cheeses and the rosemary. Stir the sauce until the cheese melts, taste the sauce to see if you need to add more salt. Once all the cheese has melted crack the two eggs in the sauce and rapidly whisk it to prevent the eggs from cooking and turn the gas off.

To assemble, pour the sauce on the bread in the baking dish and top it with onion, leek and mushroom.

Bake the pudding in the oven for 25 minutes at 180 degrees. Let the pudding rest for five to seven minutes before you dig into it. I served the pudding with a simple kale, toasted almonds and chia seeds salad with a honey mustard dressing. 

There it is! A modern savoury  twist on the classic bread pudding. Hopefully with this LSD recipe no more bread will ever be wasted again.

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