Ricotta and tomatoes pasta

I made this type of pasta with soft cheese many times. When my husband asked how do I think they would turn out with ricotta, I just had to try. They are delicious and I will make them again and this is why I’m sharing the recipe.
As I didn’t have any fresh mushrooms, I’ve used frozen ones, still as good. I usually use plum tomatoes in my recipes and this is what I used for this one.

Ricotta and tomatoes pasta recipe

Ingredients for 2 servings:
– 160g dried wholewheat pasta
– 250g ricotta
– 250g frozen mushrooms
– 2 spoons of oil
– 1 can of plum tomatoes
– salt
– pepper
– 2 tsp dried basil
– 1 tsp dried parsley

Boil the pasta according to the instruction on the packaging. Rinse it with cold water as soon as it’s boiled, so it will not get overdone.
While the pasta is boiling, make the sauce by heating the oil in a big saucepan. Toss in the mushrooms and stir. Leave them on the hob and stir from time to time. Meanwhile, using a fork prick the plum tomatoes from the can. You can use chopped tomatoes, but I find that plum tomatoes are better quality than ready chopped ones.
Add the tomatoes over the mushrooms, the spices and herbs and stir. Leave on the hob for 5 minutes or so. Take off the heat. When the pasta is ready, add it to the tomato sauce along with the ricotta. Stir so all the ingredients are incorporated.
Now the pasta is ready to be served.

Ricotta and tomatoes pasta recipe

As you can see, it’s very easy to make and it has the creaminess of the cheese, two veggies and lots of fibers from the pasta. I use Organic wholewheat pasta as I really like the taste, I found one that it’s great value for money and it has around 7g of fibers per servings (28% of the recommended daily intake).

3 Spring Smoothies

It’s been a while since I’ve shared some of my smoothie recipes. I drink a smoothie almost every day, but I rarely take pictures of them. Although I do share them on Instagram, I usually post more about dishes and less about drinks. I thought about flavours and I made these 3 Spring Smoothies, fresh and delicious.

3 Spring Smoothie recipe

I thought about smoothie recipes and I came up with these three: Matcha & Apple; Carrot & Orange and Spinach & Banana. All the smoothies have bananas, as we like them a lot. I think almost all of our smoothies have a banana in them. Because it would have been too much to make 6 smoothies for the two of us, I made one of each and we shared. The ingredients for each smoothie are twice than what I’ve used.

Surprisingly, both my husband and I liked the carrot one, even though we don’t like carrots on their own. This means I will add carrots in our smoothies at least once a week. Because I used a lot of frozen carrots, banana and natural juice, it counts as 3 portions of fruit/veggies towards your 5-a-day. I would say that is impressive, in only a big glass of smoothie.
The Matcha and apple smoothie looks a bit strange, the lovely colour of the matcha became more like a military colour, most likely because it has banana in it. It was fab, I will add matcha more often to my smoothies. The Spinach and banana smoothie is the only one with milk in it, the other two are vegan. Of course it can be made vegan by changing the milk with water (it will also have less calories, if that is a concern) or with a vegan milk.

Continue reading 3 Spring Smoothies

Polenta chips

I only recently started to make polenta chips and I find them very nice. Polenta chips are naturally gluten free and low in calories. For two servings I used only 80g of cornmeal, this means that a side dish of fried polenta chips will have a little over 200 calories. The only downside of making polenta chips is the waiting time for the polenta to set, a few hours in the fridge. The polenta can be made in the evening and left in the fridge for the following day.

I know that some people don’t make the difference between polenta and cornmeal, but it’s quite simple. The flour is called cornmeal and it can be fine, medium and coarse. Polenta is the porridge-like dish. Cornmeal can be used for so many other recipes, like for potato wedges, Bok Choi with tofu and cornbread-cupcakes.

 Polenta chips

Ingredients for 2 servings:
– 80g cornmeal
– 110g cold water
– 350g hot water
– salt
– white pepper
– 2 spoons of oil for shallow frying
– herbs

Continue reading Polenta chips

Potato wedges

I love potato wedges and I don’t exaggerate when I’m saying this. The soft smooth texture inside, covered by a crunchy layer on the outside is so appealing for me. I’ve tried different ways to make potato wedges and finally I’ve discovered the best one. I want to share the recipe with you.
I made this recipe a few times before writing this post. Let’s say that I was aiming for consistent results and not an excuse to have potato wedges 3-4 times in a row. Using the same amount of ingredients, you can make 4 side dishes or 2 mains. We had the potatoes as mains, with some grated cheese on top.

Potato wedges

For this recipe I’ve used fine cornmeal because it was the one that I had at home. I imagine the other two types of cornmeal: medium and coarse will give extra crunchiness. Keep that in mind if you are buying the cornmeal specifically for this recipe.

Ingredients for 4 side-dishes:
– 750g potatoes
– 1 heaped spoon of cornmeal
– 1 tsp paprika
– salt
– white pepper
– 3 spoons of oil

Pre heat the oven at 200 C or 180 C fan.

Wash and cut the potatoes in big slices, pat them dry if they are too wet. In a bag, pour the oil, the spices and the cornmeal. Seal the bag and shake it until all the ingredients are incorporated. It should take less than a minute. Open the bag and toss in all the potatoes. Seal the bag and start shaking it until all the sides of the potatoes are coated with the oily mixture.

Place the potatoes in a baking tray or use a frying pan as I did. Bake the potatoes for around 45 minutes. Shake the tray or stir with a spoon twice, so they don’t catch the bottom of the pan.

Take the potato wedges out of the oven and enjoy them.

Potato wedges

Because they are baked they are a healthier option, relatively low in fat and very easy to make too. Do you like Potato wedges?

Soda bread with sundried tomatoes

I like denser bread and I didn’t have time for yeasted bread, so soda bread with sundried tomatoes and wholemeal flour was the obvious choice. I love soda bread, since I baked it at home for the first time last year. I had a bag of organic and local wholemeal flour that was grinded in an old Victorian mill still in use today.

Soda bread with sundried tomatoes

Ingredients for a big loaf:
– 720g plain wholemeal flour
– 600ml buttermilk
– 2 spoons of olive oil
– 8 pieces of sundried tomatoes, cut in slices
– 1 tsp sea salt
– 1 tsp and a quarter of bicarbonate of soda

Continue reading Soda bread with sundried tomatoes

Papanasi

This is the first time I share my recipe for Papanasi, a Romanian dessert consisting of cheese doughnuts, sour cream and lots of preserve. My husband and I love this dessert and it’s something we used to have as children.

 Papanasi recipe

I don’t add any sugar in the doughnuts because I love pouring a lot of preserve on top, if you prefer a sweeter version of the doughnuts, add sugar. They will have a slightly darker colour. For Papanasi, I used soft cheese and this is the best option that I tried so far. When it comes to preserve, I would recommend cherry preserve, with the fruits intact and syrup. It’s better for this dessert than regular jam.

Papanasi

Their texture is aerated, as you can see in this picture. It’s a delight to eat.

Ingredients for 4 servings:
– 75g plain white flour
– 75g plain wholemeal flour
– 250g light soft cheese
– 2 eggs
– 1/2 tsp baking powder
– 1 tsp vanilla paste
– oil for frying
– extra flour for dusting
– sour cream
– cherry preserve

Continue reading Papanasi

Pizza with potato bread base

My husband loves pizza, so last time I baked potato bread, I made a little more and baked a pizza too.

Pizza with potato bread base

This time I made the pizza with canned cherry tomatoes, olives, mushrooms, cheese and green pepper. I think the cherry tomatoes were very good and it looked so much better than having tomato cubes. It wasn’t a lot of moisture from the tomatoes and I could use them as they were, without having to prepare them, as I have to with raw tomatoes.

Pizza with potato bread base

Ingredients for the base:
– 100g wholemeal strong flour
– 100g white strong flour
– 100g mashed potatoes
– 125ml lukewarm water
– 4g fast-action yeast
– salt
– 3-4 spoons of cornmeal

Ingredients for the toppings:
– 1 can of cherry tomatoes
– 50g tomato paste
– 100g cheddar
– 200g mushrooms
– 1 spoon of oil
– a few bits of green pepper
– 10 green olives
– 1 tsp chilli oil
– garlic powder
– oregano
– basil

Continue reading Pizza with potato bread base