What would feed me…Deena?

 
This week I bring you a recipe from the wonderful Deena Kakaya, a wonderful cook, who’s been published in several UK magazines, is regularly featured by Great British Chefs, runs cookery courses, appears at food shows, as well as being the mother of a toddler…AND writes a great blog! I’ve bookmarked many of her recipes over the past couple of years, she uses wonderful mixes of spices and ingredients, and I am loving what she’s bringing to my blog today..

So, Deena, what would you feed me? 

In the summer months I eat a lot of fresh and plump salad, but not just of the leafy and skimpy types. I like colourful concoctions full of variety and balanced textures, just as this salad recipe today serves. 

Padron peppers are a simple and delicate pleasure, they cook within a few minutes and are great with just salt. When the skin blisters an utterly tempting aroma is released and these dinky peppers work so well with the little sweet tomatoes popping through for colour and texture in the salad. I think though, that the masala cashews are clearly one of the main heroes of this salad. They are crunchy, peppery and spiked with lively chaat masala. Go easy on the salt within each element of the salad though, as the feta and chaat masala are salty, but the sweetness from the tomatoes and cashews balance it well. 

  

Padron pepper, masala cashew and slow roasted tomato salad

Colourful, season, light, easy and Moorish…this one is great as a picnic recipe, a garden meal or even a packed lunch!

Ingredients to serve 4

For the cashew nuts:

One cup cashew nuts

2 tbsp. agave nectar

1 tsp. chaat masala

1 tsp. ground coriander

1 tsp. ground coriander

1 tsp. chilli powder

¼ tsp. ground black pepper

For the Padron peppers:

1 tbsp. cooking oil

A sprinkling of salt

For the potatoes

5 new potatoes cut into even cubes

2 tbsp. cooking oil

1 tsp. cumin seeds

1 tsp. coriander powder

1 tsp. cumin powder

¼ tsp. ground black pepper

For the slow roasted tomatoes:

200g small tomatoes, like cherry tomatoes

A drizzle of rapeseed oil

Other ingredients

100g feta cheese cut into cubes

One large red onion, sliced

Method

1. Start by slow roasting the tomatoes; cut the tomatoes in half and place them on a baking sheet, cut side up and then drizzle them with oil and place them an oven which has been preheated to 160 degrees for 45 minutes. Once roasted leave them to cool.

2. Now boil the potatoes for 7 minutes before draining them and allowing them to cool completely. Then heat a non-stick pan and add the oil. Once the oil is hot, add the cumin seeds and when they start to sizzle add potatoes and coat them well with the oil. Allow the potatoes to catch a golden colour. Now sprinkle in the coriander powder, cumin powder, salt and black pepper.

3. Whilst the potatoes are cooking, on a dry non-stick pan lightly toast the cashew nuts until they turn golden. Turn the heat off and allow them to cool until they are just warm. Then sprinkle in the spices and lastly the agave nectar to bind the masala.

4. Lastly, cook the padron peppers in the oil until the skins blister and rise. Add salt to taste and turn the heat off. They should cook in 4-5 minutes on a medium-high heat.

5. Finally, combine the tomatoes, potatoes, cashews, and onion and feta cheese. I serve this salad with flatbread and dips such as hummus or a garlic-yoghurt dip.  

How good does that look??? So much fabulous flavour and great ingredients, that’s my kind of salad!! thank you so much, Deena xx

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