IMG_20151220_161253I was invited to a friend’s house just before Christmas for a secret santa pot luck party. After some internet searches for something new and fun, because I get bored making something I’m used to making, I decided to go for a ravioli bake (also an excuse to try out some new ravioli, because I don’t eat pasta often!)

I purchased two packs of ravioli, one was filled with ricotta and the other with porcini mushrooms and they were both rather delicious. Since the porcini mushroom ones were slightly overpowering, I mixed the two types for this recipe.

The most important part of this recipe, aside from selecting good ravioli or making your own, is to make a tomato sauce that your grandmother would’ve been proud of (or would be, if you’re lucky enough to have a living grandmother :)).

For the tomato sauce you will need:

2-3 cloves of garlic, minced

400g tomato sauce

oregano

1 cup water

apple cider vinegar

salt and pepper

For the dish:

Ravioli

1/2 cup or to taste grated Parmesan or mozzarella slices

To make:

Cook the ravioli for a few minutes in boiling water, then drain and carefully add a tiny amount of olive oil and stir through. You want to be gentle so as not to break the ravioli up.

Heat up some olive oil or coconut oil in a pan and start to fry the garlic, being careful not to burn. Then add the rest of the ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and let it cook for about 20 minutes or until the consistency has thickened. You might want to add some tomato paste to help it along.

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Mix the tomato sauce with enough ravioli to fill your baking dish, then top up with grated Parmesan or mozzarella. You may even want to include some of this within the mixture for a cheesy, chewy, delicious surprise!


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In anticipation of soup season, I have already braved the heat several times this Summer. Sometimes cravings are random and don’t follow seasons. I have used the oven often and cooked stews too, go figure. Good food is worth breaking out into a sweat for..

So this is my latest creation – a butternut squash and chorizo soup that can be served either with grated Parmesan or a comforting dollop of homemade yoghurt or topped up with crushed walnuts and a couple of drops of Tamari.

You will need:

1 small butternut squash, roughly chopped and seeds removed (I keep the peel on)

1 onion, finely sliced

1 clove garlic, minced

1/3 cup chopped chorizo

1 teaspoon dried chives

2 teaspoons hot curry powder

salt and pepper to taste

Parmesan/yoghurt/Tamari/walnuts for garnish

How to make:

Fry the onion in a tablespoon of olive oil, stirring until it becomes translucent. Add the garlic, chorizo, curry and chives and continue stirring continuously. Lower the heat is the onion starts to brown.

When the chorizo starts to brown, add the butternut squash and stir for 2 minutes before topping up with water until your ingredients are just covered. Bring to the boil and simmer for 20 minutes until the butternut squash softens and can be easily pierced with a knife.

Let it cool for a few minutes, then carefully blend. You may need to do this in two batches. Once cool you can store it in the fridge for about 3 days and reheat before consuming.

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IMG_3995I followed this recipe word for word from the BBCgoodfood website. For once I did not change a thing 🙂 Whilst sweet potatoes are more nutritious than regular potatoes, I would not classify this recipe as low in carbohydrates or calories.

The sweet potato is low in Sodium, and very low in saturated fat and cholesterol. It is also a good source of dietary fiber, Vitamin B6 and Potassium, and a very good source of Vitamin A, Vitamin C and Manganese. However, it has a relatively high sugar content. Have a look.

As I said in my introduction, I followed the recipe to the letter, but found that it needed a longer cooking time as some of the sweet potato slices weren’t cooked through. Do check it after 45-50 minutes by inserting a knife into the centre to check how done the sweet potato is, but you may need to cook it for up to 65-70 minutes in all.

I also cooked the spinach separately as pouring hot water over it does not suffice to defrost it properly (the fact jumped out at me when I read the recipe since I use frozen spinach very often) and used about 350g instead of 250g. It made for a lovely thick layer of spinach and it could have done with more too.

It is best to let the dish sit for a while after removing from the oven; the result was slightly watery but this improved with time and it was even better the next day after re-heating!

It is possible to refrigerate this dish (after cooling at room temperature) and enjoying over 2-3 days after re-heating.

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