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Calamari and chilli salad

October 14, 2011 in Healthy eating


Tender and spicy calamari on crisp, juicy vegetables with a sassy squeeze of lemon.

This is one of my favourite spicy meals and never fails to wow if I have some friends over. It’s light, healthy and great for the budget too (a punnet of fresh calamari goes for about R35 at Woolies).

You can also use beans, cabbage, mange tout, baby marrows, carrots… pretty much any veggies you have in your fridge. Keep things colourful and crunchy and you’re winning.

Picture this: Sun shining, huge glass of Chenin Blanc, some friends with smiley faces and this in front of you. *dreamy*

Serves 6 as a starter/light meal

200g calamari tubes
1 red pepper, sliced
1 small red onion, sliced
1 packet sugar snap peas
Small handful baby mielies
2 cloves garlic, grated
2 T Cajun spice
1/2 small hot chilli
A large lemon wedge
Small bunch coriander
1 pack of pok choi
Sesame oil

Place the calamari in a bowl with the Cajun spice and a little oil and mix well.

Heat a little oil in a pan/wok and add the onions, red pepper, sugar snaps, mielies, chilli and garlic and toss for a minute or 2. Set aside.

Add the calamari to the same pan and toss for about 2-3 minutes.

Add the veggies, coriander and pok choi and warm through (1 minute). Take off the heat and squeeze over the lemon.
Serve immediately as a warm salad.

*You could also serve this on noodles or rice to make it a more substantial meal.


Crunchy green salad

October 11, 2011 in Healthy eating

green salad

Fresh, juicy, crunchy greens with creamy avocado and ricotta and a spicy pesto dressing. Perfect for the on-coming summer!

I have been waiting for summer the entire winter (seems like I have been wearing socks forever). I am definitely a warm-weather girl and just love bare feet, long lazy lunches with lots (and lots) of white wine and beautiful fresh summer food.

Bring on fish braais, salads, fresh zingy cocktails and lots of outdoor entertaining.

This is a lovely fresh salad that is filled with fibre and all that good-for-you deliciousness that comes with crunchy greens. I spice things up with my coriander and chilli pesto (blogged previously) and it works really well.


1/2 punnet sugar snaps
½ packet rocket
4 medium baby marrows
1 small head of broccoli
1 avocado
1 packet good ricotta cheese
½ packet extra fine green beans
2 sprigs of mint
Onion sprouts
2 T coriander and chilli pesto
Black pepper

Top and tail the baby marrows.
Using a peeler, peel the baby marrows lengthways to make long thin strips.
Steam the beans for 2 minutes and refresh in cold water.
On a flat platter, arrange firstly the rocket and then the baby marrow ribbons.
Then the sliced avocado, ricotta, beans, broccoli and mint and most of the sugar snaps.
Slice a few of the sugar snaps along their rounded sides and slowly open up, place them on top of the salad for beautiful presentation.
Top with the onion sprouts and drizzle with the pesto.

Coriander, basil and chilli pesto

October 5, 2011 in Healthy eating


This is a sassy pesto that is low in fat and high in taste. It’s extra healthy as I leave out the oily parmesan cheese and it’s  great for your budget as I replace pine nuts with almonds.

Pesto freezes very well, so make heaps and store in small freezer-friendly containers.

I dollop this over fish, chicken or simply run it through some wholewheat pasta for a fresh and zinging dish with attitude.

It’s great to top a baked potato and I often spread it on toast. Hey, it’s the ultimate all-rounder!


1 punnet coriander
1 punnet basil
1 clove garlic, peeled
1 thumb ginger, peeled
1 green chilli
200ml olive oil
70g slivered almonds
Juice of 1 small lemon
1 t brown sugar
Black pepper
Place all the ingredients in a small bowl and blend.
Season to taste.

chilli pesto