It’s officially been a few days since Winter’s end, but in typical Winter fashion it could not say goodbye without one last kick in the… well you get the point. Winters’ departing gift came in the form of a splitting headache, snotty nose, sandpaper throat and absolutely no energy for anything… but I digress. Winter is over and Spring is here! For me this is good news. Winter had outstayed its welcome and I’m ready for the sunshine, coolish nights (without the need to freeze) longer days and an abundance of fruit and veg coming back into season YAY.
Of course Winter wasn’t all snot and misery. In fact, Winter was full on in terms of ticking things off the checklist. As many/all of you know my lovely girl and I moved into our very own place, after a relatively quick construction process we moved in, painted, hung pictures, dug in soak wells, installed retic, laid grass and consumed many beers after all that hard work. The next logical step of course was to undo all that hard work with the addition of a little pup called Max… don’t be fooled by his cuteness. This little guy likes to wake up early (and if he is up, why should we get to sleep in?), loves the taste of grass (yes my new grass!), enjoys frolicking in the dirt (I swear he is tunneling his way outta here!) and loves to chew on hands… but even after all that, we wouldn’t have him any other way.
Winter is typically a time to rug up in front of a fire (for those lucky enough to have one!) and enjoy the company of a good book, a bottle of red and great company… Well I don’t usually drink red so I’ll stick with the beer. Company is always good in this house and books?… Who has time for that? Unless you’re talking cookbooks… in which case I’ve got all the time in the world. Yes, Winter has brought many new cookbooks into our little family, partly due to my addiction and partly due to the pure amount of awesome cookbooks being released lately! I mean normally you’d be hard pressed to find 6 recipes in a book that you would add to your repertoire but lately I’ve just wanted to cook the whole book! My top three Winter cookbook purchases are Jamie’s Comfort Food, TexMex From Scratch by Jonas Cramby, Man Food by Billy Law and Tasty Express by Sneh Roy. Ok so for those of you who can count, that may have been four but I couldn’t decide on just three!
I also had the fantastic opportunity to write a couple of blogs for my favourite local kitchenware store! For those who don’t follow me on Facebook (that just sounds stalkerish) you can check them out below and keep them on hand for the next Winter or throw out the rule book and eat them anytime you like! Along with these blogs I also got the opportunity to guest blog for Laura from Laura’s Mess while she and her partner are off enjoying the world! You can check that out below too.
I’m sure there was more… perhaps not! Either way it’s time for some Spring-cleaning! Dust that barbecue off and get it primed for the coming summer… it’s never too early to get the barbecue ready! What better way to do it than with these amazing Lamb Koftas! For a quick and easy mid week meal, make the Koftas on the weekend and whack em’ in the freezer, they will cook from frozen in about 10 minutes (providing you don’t make them too big, that is!)
- 1/2 red onion, finely diced
- 2 garlic gloves, crushed
- 2 tablespoons of mint, finely chopped
- 3 tablespoons parsley, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 lemon, zested (reserve the lemon juice for the salad)
- handful pistachio nuts, lightly bashed.
- olive oil for cooking
- 1 cucumber, sliced (use a crinkle cut knife to make it look cool)
- 1/2 red onion thinly sliced.
- good handful of lettuce leaves
- good handful of olives
- 1/2 small block of feta
- juice from one lemon
- 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- flat breads to serve
- To make the Kofta, combine the lamb, onion, garlic, mint, parsley, cumin, cinnamon, paprika and lemon zest into a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper and mix well.
- Divide the mixture into 8 equal portions. Mold the portions around a skewer one by one. place on a tray and refrigerate for at least 45 minutes. (this will help the Koftas retina their shape and give the flavours some bonding time)
- To make the salad combine the tomatoes, cucumber, onion, lettuce, olives, fetta into a bowl and mix well.
- In a mug combine the lemon juice and oil, season with salt and pepper and mix well. Your dressing is ready to be served.
- Remove the Koftas from the fridge, place a griddle pan (or frying pan) over a high heat. Cook the kofta for about 8-10 minutes turn regularly, they should be nice and browned.
- Once the Koftas are cooked, sprinkle with the pistachios and serve the salad topped with the dress. Add some flat bread and enjoy a wonderful dinner!