Check out Cichetti #sancarlocichetti #picadilly

We checked into Cichetti one of our favourite restaurants in London as our first stop for a quick light lunch.

Winner of many food and wine awards, Cichetti is the perfect Pre- or post theatre venues but also ideal to fuel up between shopping in nearby Picadilly and Regent Sts. Filled with a fashionable crowd at anytime of the day, the atmosphere makes you feel you are at the centre of the action and the menu is a wide and varied list of Italian delights ranging from Cichetti (appetisers), antipasto, pizza, pasta, small and large plates.

With a fab wine list and great speedy service, Cichetti is an excellent and reliable pit stop for breakfast, lunch, a snack, dinner or supper!

We had buratta with Parma ham and truffles, a delicious duck salad with a balsamic glaze, apple and rocket and Italian meatballs in sauce wiped up with fresh bread.

Oh Baby! #babyshower

Went to a fabulous baby shower today for my niece …wish I had taken more photos of the fabulous feast and the beautiful tea-cups…but here’s a taste!

#Canellini beans with garlic, chilli and olives with pan fried #salmon.

A yummy and quick side to go with easy pan fried salmon. Served in a bed of fresh baby spinach. Healthy, nutritious, using mainly items you probably have in your pantry.

Prep time: 5 minutes Cooking time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:
2 boneless salmon fillets with skin on
1 can of canellini or white beans
1 ripe tomato chopped into large chunks
1 small onion diced
2 red chillies chopped
3 cloves of garlic pounded into a paste with a good pinch of salt
6 green olives roughly chopped
1/2 cup white wine
1/2 lemon juiced
3 large handfuls of baby spinach leaves
4 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Method

Heat 2 tablespoons oil in pan over medium heat, add crushed garlic to flavour oil, then add onions, and allow to simmer gently, add tomato chunks, olives and chillies, allow to simmer for 2-3 minutes.

Add canellini beans, half a cup white wine and simmer until wine is reduced and a thickish sauce. Turn off heat, cover and set aside.

Smother the salmon in the other 2 tablespoons of oil.

Heat a seperate non-stick pan, then place salmon fillets face down and cook on medium high heat until sealed an browned on flesh side, then add knob of butter and then over to cook skin side down for 5 minutes or so until skin is crispy and salmon is cooked to your liking.

Plate a bed of spinach leaves on plate.

Return beans to heat, add lemon juice and reheat. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Place 3-4 tablespoons of the bean mixture on top of the spinach, put salmon on the side and serve.

#Crepes with fresh #strawberries and strawberry rum sauce #delicious

Cooked a bit of a retro dinner last night starting with Pumpkin Soup, then individual beef Wellington’s and finished with these crepes.

I hadn’t made crepes for a long time and had forgotten how easy it is and how perfect they are for entertaining because you can make them ahead and just reheat in the microwave before serving.

I used Martha Stewart’s crepe recipe which is super easy because it’s made in a blender. Thanks Martha! https://www.marthastewart.com/921813/how-make-crepes?slide=3380816

The strawberry rum sauce is absolutely delicious!!

And both make fabulous leftovers for breakfast or brunch the next morning.

We had Messina passionfruit gelato and fresh strawberries but you can add whatever toppings you like. Fresh cream of course is the classic friend for this dish.

Preparation time: 45 minutes incl 15 minutes to rest batter

Crepes

Ingredients
1 cup flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
4 eggs
1 1/2 cups milk
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Method:

Put all the ingredients in the blender.

Blend until smooth for 2-3 minutes and bubbles form at the top.

Leave to rest for at least 15 minutes.

Heat a small non-stick pan over medium heat, coat with a film of butter. I use kitchen paper dipped in melted butter to coat the pan.

Using a ladle, scoop batter into pan, just enough to cover the bottom. Cook until golden on the underside, then flip to cook the other side, maybe 30 seconds.

Repeat until batter is finished. Makes about 15 crepes depending on size of your pan.

Strawberry Rum Sauce

Prep time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:

1 small carton of strawberries, about 10 strawberries
3 tablespoons of sugar
1 1/4 cups water
1.5 tablespoons dark or white rum
Zest of 1 lemon
1/4 teaspoon salt

Method:

Blend strawberries until smooth

Place water and sugar in pan and bring to a boil, simmer until just clear

Add strawberry pulp, zest, salt and rum, bring to a boil then turn down heat and simmer for 15 minutes or longer to thicken to a sauce consistency.

Will keep in fridge or freeze well.

Reheat crepes in microwave, add fresh strawberries, topping of choice – ice cream, fresh cream, and strawberry rum sauce! Serve and enjoy!

Roasted #Brussel sprouts, #brocollini and #pepito salad with #Tahini and lemon dressing

Roast some Brussel sprouts and slivers of garlic

Steam or microwave some broccolini

Quick fry some pumpkin seed in a tablespoon of olive oil

Add the Brussel sprouts and broccolini

Add salt to taste

Pour in juice of lemon

Mix

Transfer to salad bowl

Grind some black pepper

Drizzle over tahini paste

Enjoy

#Sweet.. #Cannelini Beans and #Peas

A delicious quick braise with garlic, onions, tomato, olive oil, white wine, lots of black pepper, a can of cannelini beans, some peas, a sprinkling of salt and parsley.

A tasty side and great as an accompaniment if you are trying to cut down carbs but want something a bit susbstantial!

Went well with roasted Brussel sprout and spinach salad.