Beetroot and Thyme Fusili


Beetroot and Thyme Fusili (1)

It’s been one of those days – long and busy. All I wanted for dinner tonight was something quick, comforting and carby.

Hubby is eating out tonight, so I thought I would treat myself and pick my favourite things and somehow combine them into a meal. So – beetroot, feta and pasta it was. I was quite worried about how this would turn out. Not so much the flavour – how could this combination not taste good – more the look. And as you can see, it is pink! I think there’s a kind of vibrant beauty to it though.

I was so pleased when I tasted this. It is lovely – there is sweetness from the beetroot, creaminess from the creme fraiche, saltiness from the feta and the wonderful aromatic thyme too. If you try one of my recipes, make it this one!

And don’t worry – hubby won’t miss out – I’ve made enough for lunch tomorrow!

I used pre-cooked beetroot in this, but if you aren’t in need of such instant gratification as I was, you could roast your own fresh beetroot before starting the recipe.

This will take 10 minutes and will serve 4.

Beetroot and Thyme Fusili (2)

Beetroot and Thyme Fusili

500g fresh fusili (or equivalent dried)

1 tbsp olive oil

1 onion

250g pre-cooked beetroot

1 tbsp fresh thyme, chopped

200ml creme fraiche

feta, to serve

1. Cook the pasta according to packet instructions.

2. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large saute pan over a medium heat then add the chopped onion. Sizzle for 2 minutes then add the chopped beetroot along with any juice from the beetroot. Cook for a further 2 minutes, then add the thyme and creme fraice.

3. Simmer for another 2 minutes, stirring often, then season. Drain your pasta and add to the saute pan along with 3 tbsps of the pasta water. Mix well.

4. To serve, top each bowl with a little crumbled feta and tuck in!

Advertisements

Spinach and Feta Filo Pie


Spinach and Feta Filo Pie (2)

I’ve loved spinach and feta filo pie (or Spanakopita as the Greek call it) ever since I first tried it. There’s something about the heady mixture of salty feta, fragrant nutmeg and crispy, light filo pastry which really appeals to me. It has all of the elements of a comforting pie, but feels light and guilt free (although, of course, there’s far too much butter and cheese involved for it to be really guilt free).

My love for this pie was hightened on our honeymoon in Kos, where I ate it for almost every meal (yes, that’s right, our hotel served it for breakfast! Yes, it was heaven), and cooking this meal now, in the depths of nasty, cold winter, takes me back to that beautiful, golden island under the beautiful, golden sun. Sigh!

Although we’re eating this as a main by itself, it would work perfectly well as part of a Greek mezze, perhaps as a side to these amazing Greek Chicken Tacos and Za’atar and Olive Focaccia on the side, with a wonderfully simple Greek yoghurt pud.

This will take you up to an hour to make, and will serve 4 as a main, 6 as a side.

Spinach and Feta Filo Pie (1)

Spinach and Feta Filo Pie

1 tbsp olive oil

1 onion

200g spinach

1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

400g feta

1 egg

6 sheets filo pastry

10g butter, melted

1. Preheat your oven to 200 degrees.

2. Roughly chop your onion and add to a frying pan with the olive oil. Saute over a high heat for 1-2 minutes, then gradually add the spinach until it is all wilted. Stir in the nutmeg, and season with black pepper. Allow to cool.

3. Roughly chop the feta and put in a large bowl. Add the spinach mix and crack in the egg, then stir to combine well.

4. Take a large oven proof dish and brush with a little of the melted butter. Lay one of the sheets of filo pastry over the dish and brush with more butter. Repeat until the dish is completely covered with filo, and you have used 4 sheets.

5. Pile in the feta mix. Spread out evenly, then top with the remaining two sheets of filo pastry. Brush with more butter, then fold the overhanging pieces of filo pastry from the bottom layers over the top, so that it is wrapped like a parcel. Brush with more butter, then bake in the oven for 30-40 minutes until golden brown. Enjoy!

Fennel and Feta Linguine


All credit for this recipe needs to go to Nigel Slater – I was trying to find ideas for something quick for Monday night and I came across this combination idea. Trust me, you will devour this when you get home from a tiring first day of the week.

The subtle, aniseedy fennel works beautifully with the moreish, savoury feta.

This will take you 20 minutes max and easily serves 4. It’s perfect for lunch the next day too.

Fennel and Feta Linguine

400g linguine

2 tbsps olive oil

3 shallots

1 large bulb fennel

1 small glass white wine

170g feta

Large handful basil leaves

1. Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil and cook the linguine according to packet instructions.

2. Meanwhile, chop the shallots and add to a frying pan with the olive oil. Sizzle over a medium heat for 2 minutes, then add the sliced fennel. Cook for a further 3 minutes before tipping in the wine. Let the wine reduce down to about half and season with black pepper.

3. When the linguine is cooked, drain and reserve a little of the water. Tip the linguine and water back into the pan you cooked it in, then add the fennel. Throw in the basil leaves, crumble over the feta and mix well before serving. Enjoy!