Pre exam dinner

A few weeks ago my two best girlfriends came over for a pre exam supper, it was such a nice evening with lots of delicious food and girly talk. I made artichoke, leek, mushroom and pesto crostini, falafel, fatuous salad and roasted sweet potatoes. We had sparkling water and finished off with a raw coconut pistachio and avocado cheesecake. I need to perfect the cheesecake recipe but the savoury food was delicious!!

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Crostini – this is an adapted recipe from the Kind Diet. Whilst you’re making the toppings warm the baguette in the oven.

Pesto 

  • 1 cup almonds
  • big bunch of basil
  • pinch salt
  • a few tomatoes – optional
  • olive oil

In a food processor pulverise the almonds till they’re a fine paste. Then with the motor running add the basil, crushed garlic, pinch of salt and tomatoes. Then add the olive oil.

Leek and Mushroom

  • Drizzle of olive oil in a pan
  • 2 -3 garlic cloves
  • 2 Leeks – white and green parts chopped
  • 1 cup chestnut mushroom – chopped into halves
  • Salt
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • a drizzle of balsamic vinegar
  • water as needed

Saute the vegetables on a medium heat and add the rest of the ingredient. Increase the heat and let the liquid evaporate.

Artichoke puree

  • I can of drained artichokes in brine
  • a few drops of umeboshi vinegar to taste – it’s a very fresh fruity vinegar. I suppose you could sub raspberry vinegar

In a food processor whizz up to a paste.

Now assemble! Slice the warm baguette, spread the pesto, the leek mixture and top with the artichoke puree. This is so darn delicious!!!

Falafel 

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  • 1 can rinsed and drained chickpeas
  • 1 half red onion
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 cup  fresh breadcrumbs
  • Fresh parsley to taste
  • pinch of salt
  • pinch of cumin, ground coriander and a touch of paprika2

Whizz this all up in a food processor, pat into little gold ball sized shapes and fry in a deep fat fryer – you could also bake them but it’s so much better fried!!!!!

Sweet potatoes 

  • 2 large sweet potatoes cubes
  • Olive oil
  • Fresh parsley chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves crushed
  • lime juice

Preheat the oven to 180C

Peel and cube the sweet potato and in a bowl toss it in olive oil, salt and pepper

Place on parchment paper and bake on a relatively low heat.

In the same bowl add the crushed garlic, chopped parsley and lime juice from half a lime. When cooked add the sweet potatoes and toss. I kept it warm by turning the oven off and placing the bowl back in the oven.

Then I set the table and served everything. What a lovely evening, thank you ladies.

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