19 Aug
2017

Tomato and chunky parsley pesto rolls

I call it chunky pesto but there likely is a word for it that means ‘salad ingredients chopped finely to be fancy’.

 

Before:

Ingredients ready to make chunky parsley pesto - midorigreen.co.uk
Take fresh parsley, a garlic clove, a handful of almonds, salt, olive oil and nutrition yeast. Also required are bread of some kind and a nice ripe tomato.

In-between:

Chop the parsley, garlic and almonds. They need to be reasonably fine but no need to head for purée status. Unless you’re making a lot it’s probably not worth using a blender or food processor (and the end result will be less chunky). Put the chopped ingredients in a bowl and add a good pinch of salt, a slug of oil and a couple of health spoonfuls of nutritional yeast. Stir it all up until ingredients are well mixed. Taste test and add more of anything that seems necessary.
Slice bread and tomatoes. Add pesto to rolls and top with sliced tomato.

After:

Glorious rolls with tomatoes and chunky parsley pesto - midorigreen.co.uk

Put on a plate. Admire for 15 seconds and then tuck in.

1 Aug
2017

Yummy ginger and tofu rice

You know how it is; you get side tracked and then realise that it’s late, you still haven’t had dinner and you’re hungry!

Before

I started with:

Ingredients ready to make yummy ginger and tofu rice | midorigreen.co.uk

Tofu – from a batch I made in the morning

Pattypan squash – from my veg bag but any summer squash would be good

Chopped ginger – I bulk prepare my ginger and freeze it, and I like it chunky

Cooked rice – retrieved from the freezer

Soy sauce – always in my cupboard

In-between

  • Add a good splash of oil to a frying pan. Get it really hot before you begin frying tofu slices (or they will stick). Don’t worry if the tofu breaks up a bit but keep frying until it’s a golden brown.
  • Chuck in chopped squash and ginger -I like plenty of chunky ginger but your mileage may vary.
  • Once the squash is softening bung in the rice and give it all a good stir.
  • Add a hefty splash of say sauce and mix it in.
  • Cook util the rice is heated through.

After

yummy ginger and tofu rice | midorigreen.co.uk

 

Eat!

25 May
2017

What to do with turnip greens

So turnip greens appeared in my veg bag this week.

Preparing turnip greens | midorigreen.co.uk

While not common in the UK apparently they are common in the rest of the world. My searches for recipes showed them stir fried, steamed and lightly boiled. Olive oil is a popular pairing and they could substitute for kale, spinach or any green leaf. Yes, even raw although the taste is on the bitter side so maybe massage some of that oil in. You can also cook the cute little turnips at the bottom of the stalk. Indeed according to the internet (obviously the fount of all reliable knowledge) this is popular in Japan with miso.

 

I decided to steam my turnip greens. Partly because I’ve been neglecting my steamer of late (beyond preparing potatoes for salad). But also because we’ve having a mini heatwave which makes it too hot to put on a frying pan.

Preparing turnip greens | midorigreen.co.uk

I started by chopping off the teeny turnips and picking through the leaves to remove any that looked a bit yellow. Clearly turnips greens are best eaten close to picking, not several days later. Actually this is a great rule for deciding what to eat first from a  veg bag. Consume anything that is individual leaves or where the leaves are less than robust. Spring greens can take  few days in the fridge. Turnip greens not so much.

 

I then gave the remaining leaves a good rinse under the tap. Quite a few had grit on them that would have made for a less than pleasant eating experience

chopped turnip greens | midorigreen.co.uk

Then I chopped the leaves into 2 inch pieces. I have a vague feeling that you are supposed to discard that stalks but as long as they are not too tough that seems wasteful.

Steaming turnip greens | midorigreen.co.uk

I crammed the chopped leaves into a steamer basket and left them to cook for 10 minutes.

 

Steamed turnip greens | midorigreen.co.uk

Once cooked further preparation was pretty easy. I spooned some onto a plate with a jacket potato and added chill salt and a splash of olive oil. A pretty easy, not to heavy dinner for a warm summer night.

Cooking turnip greens | midorigreen.co.ukTurnip greens with lemon chilli pepper | midorigreen.co.uk

The remaining turnips greens I wanted to eat cold as they apparently do in Italy. So I popped the cooled turnip greens on a tub and added olive oil, lemon juice and salt. A bot of a shake and it was ready to go in my lunch box. Yes I probably should have cooled the greens immediately after cooking but I think I got away with it this time!

Dressing turnip greens | midorigreen.co.ukCute baby turnips | midorigreen.co.uk

P.s. Aren’t the baby turnips adorable?

3 Apr
2017

The secret tunnel – something green for monday

Sunday evening rolled around. The approaching twilight taking me by surprise after a bright day. I’d popped along to see some friends perform in a burlesque show in a pub. In a back room. Does that sound better or worse than it being in the main bar?

As it happens I was slightly late arriving. My brain had gone into auto pilot and I’d starting driving my usual route to work. Of course, I was several junctions in the wrong direction when I remembered where I was going.

As a result  I squeezed in between the first and second act. Then scrambled around and found a stool in the dim light and sat down to whoop, laugh and wonder at my talented friends.

My first opportunity to visit the bar was the interval. All that whooping laughing and wondering is thirsty work. I took my first opportunity to admire the pub’s decor. One ceiling was covered in vinyl record covers.  Then at the back of the back I spotted what looked like an exit to a secret  hidden world at the back of the bar.

 

Doorway leading into a secret tunnel of green leaves - something green - midorigreen.co.uk

I think it might be the Flitch Way. The image made me recall one that I took myself (although not so good) some years ago. I wanted to try and capture the feeling of being in a secret tunnel made of green. This image does that so well.

Imagine being able to walk into the image. To be able to pop away for a few minutes of calm anytime you wanted to.

27 Mar
2017

The spring lawn – something green for Monday

It was the lawn that gave it away. Spring wasn’t kidding around. It was here now.

I’d gone out for one of my early morning walks. In recent months this has meant seeing the world in shades of black and grey. There’s the occasional spotting of a fox to liven things ups. If I time it right the sky might be a glorious shade of blue as I arrive back at the Green Rooms. However usually the only bright spots are the street lights. Plus spotting the landmarks in the local neighbourhood. There’s that house that looks like something from Scooby Doo. The drive with an unfeasible number of sports cars (are they collectors?). That property that is endlessly on the market. The garden that makes me think of Victorian novels. The occasional lit window which makes me wonder who else is up early and where they are off to that day.

Then spring arrived…

So it began to get a tiny bit lighter. Around about the same time the birds got noiser. I knew I was out walking on a spring morning when I spotted this site. The lawn slightly over grown but in a way that makes it clear that warmer weather is here. Everything is sprouting and growing again. The promise of afternoon reading in the park. Mornings drinking tea in the garden.

Spring lawn - something green - midorigreen.couk

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26 Mar
2017

Comforting and creamy – what’s in my veg bag?

Hello spring greens. Amongst this week’s inspiring selection of veg was kale, chard, salad leaves, parsnips, onions, carrots and swede.

Veg bag contents - kale, salad leaves, chard, parsnips, swede, onions, carrots - midorigreen.co.uk

 

Rice with chickpeas and chard

three bowls of rice with chickpeas, chards and spices - veg bag meals - midorigreen.co.uk

What do you cook when you have a friend coming to dinner, a fridge full or vegetables and no idea? You cook something spicy and filling that you can serve in a bowl. Naturally I’d had a look at Veganomicon for inspiration. Then I wondered why I’d never cooked this dish before.

Lentil Dahl

Lentil dahl with flat bread and cup of tea - veg bag meals - midorigreen.co.uk

Mmm dahl is such a forgiving dish. I chucked all kinds of odds and ends into this. The remains of a container of tomato puree. Quite a lot of ginger. Various spices. An onion. It still came out warm and comforting.

Potato and swede with spicy mayo

fried potato and swede hash with spicy vegan mayo - veg bag meals - midorigreen.co.uk

This has turned into my default dish to make with swede. I just love the way the swede tastes when cooked with potato. Additionally it’s so easy to make.

 

Creamy carrot and potato soup

bowl of smooth and creamy carrot and potato soup - veg bag meals - midorigreen.co.uk

Another super easy dish – soup made with carrots, potatoes and onions. It was good but would have been amazing with some beans added. Next week, maybe?

Jacket potato with kale, tofu and chickpea gravy

Jacket potato with fried tofu, kale and chickpea gravy - veg bag meals - midorigreen.co.uk

What a sensible dinner this. Creamy jacket potato with wilted kale and fried tofu. Then smothered in chickpea gravy (which I handily had in the freezer).

Saturday night random bowl

Vegan sausage roll with fried kale, fried potatoes, and pasta salad with parsnip and apples - veg bag meals - midorigreen.co.uk

So this was an end of the week bowl with whatever was in the fridge. It includes a vegan sausage roll, fried kale and potatoes. Plus a pasta salad made with wholemeal penne, parsnips, apples, sunflower seeds and chilli mayo.

19 Mar
2017

Triple greens – what’s in my veg bag?

I was very happy to get a triple dose of greens in my veg bag; cabbage, kale and spinach. Plus the usual suspects in the form of carrots and parsnips.

Veg bag contents: spinach, cabbbage, kale, carrots, parsnips, leeks and potatoes - veg bag - midorigreen.co.uk

Homemade pasta with beanballs

Home made pasta with tomato sauce and beanballs - midorigreen.co.uk
I’ve been working on my homemade pasta recipe. My noodles tend to come out a bit soft. This time I rolled them thicker and dried them for longer. They provided suitable chewiness with homemade bean balls (something else that could do with firming up) and a tomato sauce. And – yes – I must confess this dish contained nothing from my veg bag .

Leek and potato soup

leek and potato soup with fresh mint - veg bag meals - midorigreen.co.uk

Ah the creaminess of potato and carrot against the sweet sharpness of leek and the tanginess of fresh mint.

 

Tofu Florentine

Tofu florentine - veg bag meals - midorigreen.co.uk

I hardly ever make this. The 4 individual parts are simple enough to make but put together they take a lot of effort and washing up. However I was really keen to use the fresh spinach and had some homemade tofu. Plus I was making my first attempts at homemade english muffins.  As it turned out these were so easy to do that I’ll be making them more often. Which might tempt me into making tofu florentine more too.

 

Rice with carrots and peanut sauce

Rice cooked with carrots in a creamy peanut sauce

What do you cook when all you have is carrots, parsnips and a handful of greens? Why you pull out some rice from the freezer, cook up with the carrots and then stir in  a peanut sauce with a bit of spice.

 

End of the week, post yoga dinner

Parsnip and apple salad with lemon olive oil served with fried potatoes and tahini sauce - veg bag meals - midorigreen.co.uk

I was down to 4 parsnips, some cooked potatoes and an apple. So I made this for a dinner. Raw Parsnip and apple drizzled with lemon olive oil and fried potatoes with tahini sauce. The perfect friday night dish.

What do you have left in your veg bag at the end of the week?

19 Mar
2017

Leaves or birds – something green for Monday –

 

painting green leaves on a wall | something green | midorigreen.co.uk
When I first spotted the mural I thought I was looking at green birds. They looked like swallows darting between vines. However a closer look showed that they weren’t birds. The vine had leaves in different shades of green.

 

14 Mar
2017

Photo fail – what’s in my veg bag?

I love to document what I cook from my veg bag contents. It’s handy for when I can’t decide what to cook or recall a recipe.  However I’m still building the habit of actually remembering to make the dish look nice and to then take a photograph. Not a terrible thing to fail at but frustrating when I recall eating something tasty but have no photographic evidence.

This week’s veg bag contents

veg bag contents - spinach, salad leaves, onions, swede, potatoes, beetroot, carrots - midorigreen.co.uk
Huge carrot and beetroot - veg bag - midorigreen.co.uk

Potato and swede hash with spicy mayo

I was delighted to see more swede in this week’s selection. So I used it to make more hash. I topped it off with some of this week’s batch of vegan mayo. In order to spice things up a bit I added a glug of chilli sauce to create a creamy spicy sauce.

Baked Camembear

I didn’t make this. In fact, my only efforts  involved wrapping it in foil and baked it. I bought it from Lettices Foods at the Colchester Vegan Festival. It was delightful served with crusty bread and cranberry sauce.

More hash and filled flatbread

Actually I only made half of this meal. The filled flatbreads were bought at Colchester Vegan Festival.  I purchased 3 of these. Then I put them in the freezer without labelling. Consequently it’s been a bit of lucky dip every time I eat one. I’m calling the dish on the rest of the plate ‘underground vegetable hash’.

Battered fishless pie

More evidence that I’ve been failing on the cooking front! This fishless pie, served by Battered on a pub grub night,  was just as good as their fishless and chips.

Burgers and sweet potato fries

This is the final evidence proving that I’ve eaten out too much this week! At any rate it was great to finally make it  to Mooshie’s on Brick Lane. These burgers were most satisfying to chow on before heading off to watch some burlesque.
Photographic fails this week included various lunches with salad, carrots and fried tofu. Plus a huge pan of borscht. Oh well –  must try harder next week.

 

13 Mar
2017

Green haired gal – something green for Monday

 

Green haired character from The Clone Wars - midorigreen.co.uk

Recently I was watching The Clone Wars animated series. It’s fun to watch but I didn’t expect any greenspiration to show up. Then this green haired gal came along looking pretty cool. Naturally she represents the light side of the force. It’s her brother is the one who is strong in the dark side.

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Greetings! I’m Annastasia

I'm bit keen on the colour green and like to ramble on about food, cooking, veganism, refashioning, sewing, clothes, list making, music, reading and anything else that pops up in my overcrowded existence! I'm also one half of Ink drops boxes, stationery by the boxful, dropped through your letterbox.

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