Lamb Kofta with couscous salad

lamb, salad

These little meatballs are delicious served on their own or in a pita bread pocket or wrap. I served ours with a salad made of couscous which is very easy and quick to prepare.

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Kofta

2 slices bread

1 egg

500g lamb mince

2 T chopped mint

2 T chopped parsley

1/2 t allspice

1/2 t cinnamon

1 onion, very finely chopped

2 T oil to fry meatballs in

Salad

1 c couscous

2 T olive oil

2 T lemon juice

2 cloves garlic

1/2 bag baby spinach

1 yellow capsicum, chopped

2 tomatoes, chopped into small squares

2 t chopped mint

2 T chopped parsley

Yoghurt and hummus sauce

2 T unsweetened plain yoghurt

2 T hummus

1 clove garlic

juice of 1/2 lemon

4 pita breads (or halves if big ones) and hummus to serve

1. Place the couscous in a pot and cover in boiling water. Put the lid on and leave to stand for 10 mins.

2. While it is standing prepare the kofta mix. Make breadcrumbs from the bread in the food processor. Add the remaining ingredients and pulse to mix.

3. Once the couscous is ready fluff it up with a fork. Place in a salad bowl and mix through the olive oil, lemon juice and garlic. Place in the fridge to cool.

4. Prepare the hummus and yoghurt sauce by mixing everything together in a bowl.

5. Heat the 2 T oil in a frying pan. Make small patties from the kofta mixture and brown on both sides. Place on a plate covered in paper towels to soak up any extra fat and oil.

6. While the kofta are cooking finish the salad. Add the remaining ingredients and toss together.

7. Toast the pita breads in the toaster. Spread with hummus and chop into segments.

8. Serve the meatballs and salad with the hummus and yoghurt sauce drizzled on top, and some pita bread on the side.

Pesto Lamb with spinach and bean salad

lamb, salad

This is a very quick and tasty dinner which doesn’t require hours of marinading beforehand. I served ours with some lightly toasted turkish bread.

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Lamb

4 lamb steaks (chops would work as well)

2 T pesto

2 T olive oil

Oil to fry lamb in

Salad

1/2 bag baby spinach

Small bag of fresh beans – a couple of big handfuls

2 T lemon juice

2 T olive oil

1 clove garlic, crushed

1. Mix the pesto and olive oil together and spread over both sides of the lamb steaks. Leave to stand while you prepare the beans.

2. Top and tail the beans. Lightly steam them – for about 3 mins. Put in the fridge to cool.

3. Heat the frying pan. Fry the lamb steaks on both sides to medium-rare or whatever your preference is.

4. To finish off the salad, take the beans out of the fridge. Add the spinach. Mix the lemon juice, olive oil and garlic together. Toss through the vegetables to coat.

5. Serve the lamb with salad on the side.

Kids: I just gave my kids the whole beans by themselves as a vegetable rather than the salad which they wouldn’t have eaten!

Lamb Pita Pockets

fast, lamb, salad, Uncategorized

Pita pocket dinners are so quick to make – you could have this on the table in about 20 minutes. The only step which takes time is marinating the lamb. I put the marinade together before work and left the lamb in it all day, ready to cook when we got home.

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Lamb

500g lamb leg steaks, sliced

1/4 c lemon juice

1/4 c olive oil

2 T chopped rosemary

1 t crushed garlic

1 T oil to cook

Salad

1/2 bag baby spinach

100g feta

100g olives

8 – 12 cherry tomatoes, cut in half

1/2 cucumber, cut in half vertically and then sliced

A small handful of basil leaves, torn

2 T olive oil

2 T balsalmic vinegar

Extras

Pitas to serve – dependent on how hungry you are!

1/4 c hummus

1/4 c plain unsweetened yoghurt

1. Mix together the lamb marinade and place the sliced lamb in it to marinade for several hours.

2. Heat a frying pan on medium-high heat.

3. While it is heating mix together the spinach, tomatoes, olives, and cucumber. Mix the vinegar and oil together and toss through the salad. Top with crumbled feta.

4. Fry the lamb quickly, don’t overcook. This will only take a couple of minutes on each side.

5. The easiest way to heat pita breads is in the toaster. They will puff up and go slightly crispy. Once you have heated them chop a small piece of the top off – just enough to fit the fillings in.

6. Fill the pitas with salad and lamb and top with a sauce made of the hummus and yoghurt mixed together. You can serve extra salad on the side.

Kids: My kids would not eat this salad. My 6 year old will happily eat a pita pocket filled with salad and meat, while for my 4 year old I serve raw veges, brush half a toasted pita with garlic butter and serve the lamb separately.

Corn and Potato Pizza with quick spinach salad

Vegetarian

While I was on my OE in my 20s I visited my cousin who was an exchange student in Italy. We spent the evening with her host family, who served us up a variety of pizzas. If I had not eaten corn and potato pizza in Italy, I would not have thought it was authentic! Miss 6 gobbled this up and it must have been tasty because she insisted it had bacon on it, but it is entirely vegetarian. I have no idea if this is an authentic version, the original eating experience was 12 years ago now, but my family enjoyed it!

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Pizza Base

You could use bought bases, but this recipe is sooo easy and quick!

3/4 c warm water

2 T sugar

2 t yeast

1 T oil

2 c flour

1/2 t baking powder

Pizza toppings

1 cob of corn, kernels cut off the cob (you could use tinned or frozen corn)

1/2 red onion, sliced

4 medium potatoes, scrubbed and very thinly sliced

1 1/2 c grated cheese (I was flash and used mozarella – but any will do)

3 T chopped rosemary

Sea salt to sprinkle on top

Salad

1 big handful baby spinach leaves

1 big handful rocket or watercress leaves

2 T raisins

2 T sliced almonds

1 T olive oil

Juice of 1/2 a lemon

  1. Mix the water, sugar, yeast and oil together and stand, covered until frothy, about 10 mins. Grease an oven tray. Turn oven to 200 C fan bake.
  2. While this is happening prepare the pizza toppings. Slice the potato VERY thinly (if it is too thick you will have crunchy raw potato as it isn’t in the oven long). Cut the kernels off the corn, grate the cheese, slice the onion thinly and chop the rosemary.
  3. Once the water and yeast is frothy pour it into a large bowl (if it isn’t in one already) and mix in flour and baking powder. Pour onto a floured bench or board and knead briefly to make into a dough.
  4. Roll out the dough thinly on a floured surface to fit the oven tray – it should cover most of the tray if rolled thinly.
  5. Top with the potato by making a circle of slices on the edge of the pizza and working your way inwards. Overlap each circle very slightly. Top with corn, then onion, then cheese, then rosemary and salt.
  6. Bake in the oven for 12 mins. I would check after 10 mins as each oven is slightly different and you don’t want dark brown edges! You want the top to be golden, the whole base to be cooked through and the potato to not be raw.
  7. While the pizza is cooking toss all the salad ingredients together. Lemon hint:
    Drain the juice through your slightly opened fingers to avoid getting the pips in it – like a built in sieve.
  8. Serve pizza with salad on the side (see note on kids and veges below).

Note on veges and kids and corn in the microwave: There is no way my girls would eat this salad. One of the challenges of cooking for kids is that there are often limited vegetable options they will eat and they get pretty boring after a while! Miss 6 will eat most veges including lettuce salad, Miss 4 has a more limited list. I can generally get her to try things, but not eat copious amounts of new vegetables, and all raw veges except for cucumber get spat out after she has chewed them for a while! I served my girls up half a a cob of corn with the pizza. If you remove tassels off a cob of corn (but keep the husk on) and put it in the microwave for 3 mins on high it will cook perfectly (you may need to experiment with the length of time if your microwave is less or more powerful than ours).