Asperges au safran et au chutney de mangue – Saffron asparagus with mango chutney

A delicious side dish with asparagus cooked in saffron scented water topped with mango chutney. I served it with warm boiled eggs on a bed of baby arugula. Perfect for a warm summer’s lunch.

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1- Wash and cut the asparagus at about a third of its length.
2- Boil water and add a generous amount of saffron liquid (recipe here ). Place the asparagus gently and let it cook until it is al dente.

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3- Take the asparagus out of the boiling water and place them in a sieve to get rid of the excess water.

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To serve simply place it on a plate and top with mango chutney (recipe here). It can accompany any dish that does not have many spices since the chutney provides a lot of taste, such as eggs as here or broiled fish. Enjoy! 

Dates with eggs and a touch of saffron

We often have dates with eggs for diner. It is a traditional dish for breakfast or a light meal in the Middle East and North Africa. Here, inspired by a recipe in this book (“The Saffron Tales”), I prepared it with ginger, cinnamon and touch of saffron.

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For four eggs
1- Cut about three to four dates per egg in small pieces.
2- In a pan, place the dates along with two tablespoons of water, a dash of freshly grated cinnamon and about three centimetres of fresh ginger root grated. Bring it to a boil, lower the fire and let it cook until the dates are soft and almost all liquid has evaporated.
3- In the meantime, mix in a bowl the four eggs, four tablespoons of milk and a dash of saffron liquid.
4- Add a small piece of butter to the dates in the pan and mix. Pour the egg liquid and cover with a lid. Let it cook on low fire until the egg mixture is almost all hard.

Sprinkle with coarse sea salt and serve immediately with fresh bread. 

Quiche with roasted bell peppers, bacon, Gruyère and fresh mint

A Quiche made without dough, and filled with tasty and colourful ingredients.

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1- Start by preparing the roasted bell peppers (recipe) or use high quality jarred ones, preferably the Italian kind.
2- Then prepare the bacon. Use as much as you want. Cook it in a heavy pan until crispy. Place it between paper towels to remove the excess fat, then crush with your fingers.
3- In a large bowl mix: three organic eggs, 100 gr of sifted flour, 50 cl of cold milk (half a litre) and freshly crushed pepper. Do not add salt since the bacon is already salty.
4- Place the egg mixture in a prepared baking pan (buttered and floured) and sprinkle with the bell peppers, the bacon, the fresh mint and at the end, half a cup of high quality shredded Gruyère.
5- Bake for 40 minutes in a 180ºC. oven.

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Enjoy immediately! It can be reheated in the oven and should be stored in the fridge once it has cooled.

Quiche bacon & gruyère

We are very lucky to have a wonderful gourmet store here in San Miguel, poetically called “Luna de queso“, with a charcuterie and cheese section to envy any store in Europe. So for this quiche sans pâte (no dough), I used real Gruyère (the one with holes from Switzerland) and high quality bacon (slices cut for you rather than the plastic wrapped variety from the supermarket). It really makes all the difference.

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1- Fry as much bacon as you want, but not too much, in a heavy pan. Wrap the bacon in a paper towel to get rid of the excess fat. Change the paper towel and crush the strips with your fingers.
2- In a large bowl, whisk three organic eggs. Mix in 100 gr of sifted flour (a little less than a cup), 500 ml of cold milk, freshly grounded black pepper and some herbs of choice. Do not add salt since the bacon is already salty.
3- Place the egg mixture in a prepared baking pan (lined with butter and flour). Sprinkle the mixture with the crushed bacon and half a cup of grated Gruyère.
4- Bake for 45 minutes in a 180º c. oven.

Serve immediately with a nice salad.  

Dates with eggs, Persian style

A slightly different recipe than the Moroccan version of dates with eggs (recipe here), with a slight Persian touch. Excellent for breakfast or a light meal.

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For three large organic eggs (or four small ones):
1- In a pan, place a little bit of butter and half a cup of good quality dates cut in small pieces. Make sure the fire is on low and let the dates get soft.
2- In a bowl, mix with a fork three eggs (try not to make bubbles) and add a teaspoon of the Persian spice mix adviyeh (recipe here) and a dash of cold mix. Mix again with the fork.

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3- Pour the egg mixture on top of the dates and let it cook on low fire until desired consistency. Do not mix.

Serve immediately with the bottom part placed on top of the plate (so that the golden side is visible). Place some sea salt on the side, along with fresh bread. For a light lunch or dinner, you can serve it with a cucumber and tomato salad.