Courgette carpaccio

Courgette carpaccio

This week I’ve been galavanting around Menorca with my friend/partner in crime Philippa. We drank all the wine and beer the little island had to offer, until I rather unceremoniously fell down a flight of marble stairs – SPLAT! With severely bruised legs and ego, I shook off the do-gooders attempting to peel me off the floor and hobbled angrily to the bar with my friends laughter still ringing in my ears. I spent the rest of the holiday covered in bags of ice and drinking away my shame – so all in all, a very successful holiday!

Anyhoo, since returning home, I’ve been busy licking my wounds and stuffing shop-bought stuffed-crust pizzas into my mouth to cheer myself up. That was until I realised I couldn’t remember the last time I ate a single vegetable. So yesterday, I ran/hobbled to the shop and bought myself a giant courgette and ate it raw, slathered in olive oil and goats cheese. Fortunately for me, courgettes are high in magnesium, which supposedly helps to heal bruising and inflammation, so I’ll only have to eat a thousand more before my legs start resembling legs again.


Courgette carpaccio with goats cheese
Serves 8 as a side / Hands on time 5 mins / Total time 5 mins / V Gf
2 large courgettes, peeled into ribbons
Juice of 1 lemon
2 tbs extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt flakes
Handful fresh Dill, roughly chopped
70g vegetarian soft goats cheese (optional) –  I used Sainsbury’s Abergavenny goats cheese


Method
1. Using a potato peeler, peel the 2 courgettes into ribbons and put in a large bowl. Squeeze over the lemon, 2 tbs of extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle over a large pinch of salt.
2. Add the chopped dill and give it a good mix (being careful not to break up the courgette ribbons). Once everything is nicely dressed, pour out onto a large platter and dot with hunks of goats cheese. Drizzle with more extra virgin olive oil and serve.

Courgette carpaccio

If you’ve had a go at making my courgette carpaccio or any of my other recipes, I’d love to hear about it @corrieheale corrie.heale@gmail.com


V – Vegetarian    Gf – Gluten free



Courgette penne with fresh mint & feta

Courgette penne with feta & mint
Courgette penne with feta & mint

So, unless you’ve been living under a rock this past week (in which case, you would probably be dead), you may have noticed it’s been snowing a bit. Okay, so it’s been snowing a lot, but I still don’t think it warranted the levels of hysteria that perhaps the apocalypse would have caused. Yes, I’m aware the ‘Beast from the East’ has been wafting Baltic conditions over our little island, but can we all just put on a jumper and shut up about it? Also, if I see one more Instagram of someone’s snowy back garden, I’m going to throw my phone on the floor and stamp on it.
Anyway, now that the snow has melted, we can all get on with our lives. For me, that was walking to work this morning and passing a handmade sign that read ‘please stop shitting outside our home’… Normality has officially been resumed.
Anyhoo, I love this pasta dish, it’s actually one of the first recipes I ever blogged about, but over the years it has evolved and simplified, so I thought I’d share the updated recipe with you. It’s super-easy, cheap, and takes no time at all. Bon appetit.


Courgette penne with feta & mint
Serves 2 / Hands on time 25 mins / Total time 25 mins / V
1 tsp olive oil
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 courgettes, grated
Pinch of chilli flakes
Handful of fresh mint
2 handfuls of black olives
100g vegetarain feta
150g wholemeal penne
Drizzle Pomora extra virgin olive oil to serve


Method
1. Start by boiling a kettle of water and weighing out your pasta. Pop the pasta into a saucepan and season well with salt (don’t cook your pasta just yet).
2. Peel and finely chop the garlic and grate both of your courgettes. On a medium heat in a large cooking pot or frying pan, add the garlic to the oil. Cook the garlic for a minute before adding the courgette. Stir well, up the heat, add a pinch of chilli flakes and season well with salt and pepper. Continue to cook stirring occasionally.
3. Add the boiled water from the kettle to the pasta and cook according to packet instructions. Now is a good time to roughly chop the mint leaves, black olives and crumble the feta, put to one side.
4. Once the pasta is cooked, drain well and add straight into the courgette mixture. Give it a good stir until combined. Incorporate the black olives, fresh mint, and feta before dividing into 2 bowls. Top with a sprinkle of chilli flakes and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. Lovely jubbly.

Courgette penne with feta & mint
Courgette penne with feta & mint

If you’ve had a go at making my courgette penne or any of my other recipes, I’d love to hear about it @corrieheale corrie.heale@gmail.com


V– Vegetarian



Courgette & Spring Green Lumaconi (pasta)

Courgette & Spring Green Lumaconi (posh pasta)
Courgette & Spring Green Lumaconi (posh pasta)

Lumaconi what now? Don’t worry, I didn’t know what is was either until I stumbled across it in my beloved Sainsbury’s and thought “that pasta looks like snail shells, I MUST HAVE IT!”… But you can use any shape of pasta you like, normally I’d use wholewheat but I’ve had a crappy week so thought I’d go wild and treat myself. I know, I’m out of control.
I actually make this meal a lot during the week because it’s healthy, easy and versatile, like a Birds Eye Potato Waffles. Okay so maybe not THAT versatile but I do like to turn this meal into a delicious pasta salad the next day.
Also, I think it’s worth noting that I find the humble courgette, the soggy wet blanket of all the cooked vegetables, that’s why I prefer to grate it. A cold pre-cooked courgette makes for a rather unpleasant slimy pasta salad situation.

Courgette & Spring Green Lumaconi (pasta) 
Serves 2 / Takes 20 minutes / V🌶
Make it vegan: Leave out the feta cheese
Half a white onion, finely chopped
1 Courgette, grated
4 Handfuls of spring greens (Kale, leeks, cabbage… Anything green really)
2 Garlic cloves, crushed
1 Medium red chilli, chopped
Pinch of chilli flakes
140g Pasta (I used lumaconi but any will do)
Half a pack of feta cheese
Handful of pitted black olives in brine, roughly chopped
Half a bunch of fresh mint, roughly chopped

TIP: Add these ingredients to your shopping list if you want to turn your leftovers into a pasta salad the next day…
Half a packet of rocket
Whole avocado
Avocado oil or extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbs houmous

Method:
1. Chop your onion, half the red chilli, garlic and soften in a pan with a bit of spray oil on a medium heat. Once the oil has absorbed fry in a bit of water until soft. Grate your courgette and add to the pan along with the spring greens. Season well and keep adding a bit of water to keep the ingredients moist (sorry, gross word but necessary).
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2. Boil the kettle and add it to around 140g of pasta. I like my pasta really soft like an old woman with no teeth but if you prefer it al dente then follow the packet instructions.
3. Whilst your pasta and greens are cooking half your olives and chop the mint, feta and the rest of the chilli. By the time your pasta is cooked your greens should be done so take them both off the heat and drain your pasta. Pour straight into the saucepan with the greens and mix well.
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4. Finally top with the mint, feta, olives and chilli and combine as best you can without getting it all over the floor… No, that didn’t happen to me and no I didn’t get a dog hair in my mouth when I ate a pasta shell off the floor… I need a bigger pan.
5. Pour into a bowl, sprinkle with chilli flakes and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.
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PASTA SALAD: I’ve saved half of my pasta to turn into pasta salad tomorrow, this is how you make it… Take your refrigerated pasta, put it in a big bowl and combine it with half a packet of rocket and chopped avocado. Pour onto a plate, drizzle with avocado oil and a sprinkle of chilli flakes. Serve with a dollop (or half a tub) of houmous. You don’t have to use avocado oil but I think it tastes better if you do.

Courgette & Spring Green Lumaconi
Courgette & Spring Green Lumaconi
Spring Green & Avocado Pasta Salad
Spring Green & Avocado Pasta Salad

If you’ve had a go at making my Lumaconi or any of my other recipes I’d love to hear about it. @corrieheale corrie.heale@gmail.com