Thursday, May 22, 2014

Herb and Pistachio Couscous

Normally we use pre-flavoured sachets of couscous (preferably Ainsley Harriot's) but this time I decided that making it from scratch really cannot be that hard.  And to produce something jam packed full of flavour, such as this dish, really isn't hard at all.
 
Full of fresh herbs that not only tasted fantastic together but let off such a pungent aroma.  The delicate crunch of red onion and pistachio added a depth to the citrus laced soft couscous perfectly.
 
A very enjoyable side dish that, to be honest, I could just eat by itself by the plate full.

Needless to say no more pre-flavoured sachets for this house.....
 
 
 Herb and Pistachio Couscous
(recipe adapted from Taste.com)
 
Serves: 8
ProPoints per serve: 5
 
1 1/2 cups couscous
1 1/2 cups boiling water
1/2 cup chopped fresh mint leaves
1/2 cup chopped fresh coriander leaves
1 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
1 small red onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup pistachio kernels, toasted
1 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup orange juice
salt
freshly ground black pepper

Place couscous in a heatproof bowl. Add boiling water. Stand, covered, for 5 minutes or until water is absorbed. Stir with a fork to separate grains. Cool for 5 minutes.
 
Meanwhile finely chop herbs and onion. Add remaining ingredients. Season with salt and pepper. Toss to combine. Serve.

(click here for a printable version of this recipe)

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Penne Boscaiola

Firstly my apologies… so much has happened to the House of Murray since March that have left us very time poor and sadly this has led to no new entries here. A quick overview – a job change for me at the same company (for the better) which now finds me based in one office with no travel at the moment, and of course time has been spent getting into a normal family routine – one where mam is now home every night. Needless to say it has been a big change for the four of us.  I also took two weeks holiday which gave me time to focus on my family and also had a quick camping trip to the incredible Sheepyard Flats (so serene and relaxing) over the Easter period.

As usual I have recipe posts banked up so I will try and get through these really quickly to tempt your tastebuds but in the meantime I will start with this one.......

This old family favourite has definitely gone under the radar as for some unknown reason I have managed to have never blogged it. I have blogged a variation but not the original recipe. Oh well I guess stranger things have happened.

Pasta, as well documented, is a comfort food in our house. If I ever ask the kids what they fancy for dinner I get the same answer time and time again … “PASTA”! 
 
Penne Boscaiola is the perfect comfort meal – creamy, jam packed with vegetables and bacon laced with hint of cheesy sweet chilli…. mmmmm Heaven in a bowl.  A perfect week night wonder as it’s very easy and quick to prepare and cook not to mention devoured almost instantly.


Penne Boscaiola
(Recipe adapted from WW Heavenly D’Lites Cookbook)

Serves: 6
ProPoints per serve: 11

375 grams penne pasta
cooking spray
1 brown onion, finely chopped
3 teaspoons crushed garlic
150 grams middle bacon, fat trimmed
1 red capsicum, sliced
150 grams button mushrooms, sliced
375 ml can Carnation Light and Creamy Evaporated Skim Milk
 3 tablespoons sweet chilli sauce
150 grams baby spinach leaves
salt
freshly ground black pepper
80 grams finely grated parmesan cheese


Cook pasta in pan of boiling water following packet instructions until just tender.  Drain.

Coat a large frying pan with cooking spray.  Cook the onions, garlic and bacon until onion is soft.  Add capsicum and mushroom and cook for a further 2 - 3 minutes until capsicum begins to soften.

Add the milk and chilli sauce to the pan.  Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.  Stir through the pasta, spinach and half the parmesan cheese until mix through well and spinach just wilted.

Serve with remaining parmesan cheese.

(Click here for a printable version of this recipe)