Tuesday, 11 April 2017

Delicious Food for the Easter Menu

Happy Easter week! It is time for some food inspiration. What I love about Easter is that stores begin to offer spring and summer flavors like new potatoes, asparagus and courgette. Yet the weather is a bit chilly which gives a nice excuse to serve dishes with warm spices and lot of taste. This Easter I come with three new (lacto-)vegetarian recipes to include to the Easter menu: Spicy Amaranth Chickpea Patties, Festive Asparagus Potato Salad and Courgette Tomato Focaccia.

Spicy Amaranth Chickpea Patties work in the Easter buffet as a vegetarian option but are also a great evening snack when reading a book or watching telly. Amaranth was a new thing for me before I came across with a package at the local grocery store last week. Of course I had to try it, just google it and you will learn how great it´s nutritional values are. If something has nourished us for 8000 years it must be working! If you taste bare cooked amaranth the first time you might find out that the taste is quite strong. The taste reminded me from beetroot and spinach. When combined with chickpeas you will get a great texture. Sweet sun dried tomatoes, garlic and basil make these patties so tasty they will vanish from your plate before you get an Instagram picture (at least I had major problems not to eat all before getting pictures :P).

Asparagus is one of the signs of spring. When piles of asparagus arrive to the stores I pick a package and eat it cooked with melted butter. In this festive salad I combined the asparagus with new potatoes, parsley, salad cheese and olives. This salad is also a beautiful dish to put on your Easter menu, just place the asparagus buds as a final touch to the surface to make it look even more luxurious.

I still remember the first time I tasted focaccia. It was 2009 and my first trip to London. It tasted so delicious with tomatoes, garlic and red onion as a topping. Same time it was savory and sweet. It would be so wonderful to have this courgette focaccia, dark coffee and orange juice as a breakfast on Easter morning. It would taste equally as good in an Easter menu with great salad. It is you to choose if you can save it for dinner!

Spicy Amaranth Chickpea Patties

1 1/2 dl dried chickpeas
3/4 dl amarantha
1 large onion
vegetarian oil
3 garlic cloves
1 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp talkkuna flour (I think chickpea flour would also do)
1/2 fresh basil
1/2 dl sun dried tomatoes in oil
olive oil
1/4 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp cardamom
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
NB! You can put less or more spice according to taste!

1. Let the chickpeas be over night in cold water and then cook with little bit of salt. Let cool down.
2. Cook amaranth according to the package. Let cool down.
3. Mince the onion and sweat with vegetarian oil. Add spices to the mix and heat for while. Take off from the heat.
4. Mince the sun dried tomatoes, garlic and basil.
5. Put ingredients together and squash with hand blender. Add talkkuna flour and lemon juice. Mix properly.
6. Put breadcrumbs to a bowl. Using two spoons lift a small amount off pastry to the bowl and cover with bread crumbs. Take the soft pastry lump from the breadcrumbs and form it to a patty and lift to the baking paper. Make about 16 patties. 

7. Brush some olive oil to the patties and bake 25 minutes in 200 Celsius degrees.

8. Serve with a dip sauce.


Festive Asparagus Potato Salad

small new potatoes
cherry tomatoes
sweet red paprika
1/2 onion
black olives
salad cheese in oil & herbs
lemon juice

1. Cook asparagus and potatoes separately. Rinse cooked asparagus in cold water. Chop both asparagus and potatoes to large bites.
2. Split cherry tomatoes and olives. Chop the red paprika. Rinse 1/2 dl parsley. Mince the onion.

3. Mix all ingredients together. Add salad cheese. Add lemon juice according to taste.


Courgette Tomato Focaccia
1/2 courgette
3 garlic cloves
olive oil
cherry tomatoes
black olives

7 g dry yeast
6-7 dl wheat flour
1/2 dl graham flour
3 dl warm water
1/2 dl (garlic) olive oil
1 tbsp sugar
1/2 tbsp salt

1. Mix together dry yeast and 1 dl flour. Add 3 dl warm water and mix. Add 1/2 dl olive oil, sugar and salt. Mix properly. Mix in graham flour. Add flour little by little kneading properly. Stop adding more flour when the dough is firm and starts to leave from fingers. Let the dough raise for 30 minutes.

2. Put a baking paper to a baking tray. Lift the dough to the tray. Using your hands spread the dough evenly to the tray. Using your fingers make little holes to the surface. Pour some olive oil to the surface. Massage finely minced garlic and salt to the surface. Press courgette slices, chopped olives and tomatoes to the dough. Sprinkle little bit oil to the veggies plus the rosemary to the top. 

 3. Bake 15-20 minutes in 225 Celsius degrees. 


Have you already planned your Easter menu? Do you favor vegetarian or meat dishes? What is your must have to the Easter table?

I wish you all a wonderful Easter week!


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