Joanna Anastasia

Food

Spiced Manzanilla & Hojiblanca From Spain Creamy 20 minute pasta


Pasta dinners are definitely my kids favourite – I could probably feed them a new pasta dish every day of the week and they wouldn’t get bored of it! I can’t blame them though, as me too I feel that there’s nothing as comforting as a plate full of pasta on a gloomy fall day! 

So today I want to share with you this super simple yet absolutely delicious pasta recipe that I came up with on one of these rainy weekday nights when I needed a dinner ready real fast – but I was also craving something absolutely delicious that would remind me of summer evenings!  

The base of this pasta dish is somewhat similar to the easy carbonara pasta by Jamie Oliver – by adding eggs to steaming hot pasta and just a bit of cream we end up with a deliciously creamy pasta base that can be dressed in any way you like! So for today’s recipe we use it with toppings of sauteed chorizo with mushrooms – and the star of this recipe-  Manzanilla & Hojiblanca Olives From Spain – spiced with fresh coriander seeds and red pepper flakes- adding a real depth of flavour to this dish as well as a big dose of nutrition ! I used two different Olives from Spain varieties in this recipe- Manzanilla and Hojiblanca from Spain- as when they are mixed together they add somore visual interest and taste depth!

So if you’re craving a comforting and full on flavour pasta dish with big nutritional benefits -as Olives from Spain are packed with vitamins, healthy fats, fiber and antioxidants! – then look no further! 

What you’ll need:


1 cup of large Manzanilla Olives from Spain

1 cup of Hojiblanca Olives from Spain

One package of spaghetti

2 eggs

¼ cup of cream1 chorizo sausage 

½ cup of mushrooms

½ cup of cherry tomatoes

2 pinches of coriander seeds

1 pinch of red pepper flakes

Fresh persil

Cook past as per instructions on the package. While pasta cooks, take a skillet and heat on some olive oil. Add all Olives from Spain, red pepper flakes, coriander seeds and cherry tomatoes cut in halves. Cook for around 4-5 minutes until fragrant. Add fresh persil. Set aside.

Now cook chorizo and mushrooms cut in thick slices. Set aside.

Once your pasta is cooked, drain the water and then toss in two eggs and cream. Stir it and keep on a low heat for around two minutes until the egg and cream mixture is thoroughly cooked. Add fresh pepper and set aside.

Now it’s time to dress your plates- put a generous portion of creamy pasta first, then add a bit of sauteed mushrooms with chorizo, and finally top it all with a large portion of spiced cooked Olives from Spain with tomatoes and fresh herbs! Enjoy your dinner!

Disclaimer- this post was brought to you by Olives from Spain, all opinions remain exclusively my own.

Vegan sloppy joes

You know what I promised myself at the beginning of this year? That I would cook more vegan food! And you know what I failed at? Actually cooking more vegan food !

Let’s be real, if you weren’t brought up with vegan cuisine it’s really difficult to switch- and not because meat is so delicious ( I really don’t think it is) but because coming up with EASY, YUMMY AND FILLING vegan recipes is just SO TOUGH!

But I really love eating vegan when we’re out and about- though the food I order usually looks really complicated to prepare- like nothing I could actually whipped up at home with a whiny toddler at my feet!

Finding a vegan recipe that doesn’t require a million ingredients and that actually will keep us all filled and wont make my kids say yuuuuck – is like finding an unicorn!

Well. I found an unicorn. These vegan sloppy joes are : easy to make. Delicius. Filling. And easy on the budget!

What you’ll need:

  • 6 slider buns
  • 2 zucchinis
  • 1 can of chickpeas
  • 1 small onion
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 lime
  • 1 pinch of grounded cumin seeds
  • 1 pinch of coriander seeds
  • salt & pepper

Chop onions and garlic. Using a mortar and pestle crush spice seeds. Cook together until fragrant on medium heat. Meanwhile cut zucchinis in small cubes- and then add them to the pan. Let cook for around 5 minutes. While it cooks drain the chickpeas – put half aside in a bowl, and crush the other part with a potato crusher ( that way the sloppy joes will have the comforting mashy texture of mashed chickpeas and the interesting more crunchy all at once ) Add all of the chickpeas to the pan and squeeze in the lime juice in- and let cook for another couple of minutes.

Place the mixture in the slightly heated bun and enjoy!

Easy way to cook Indian food at home

Ever since I traveled around India in my mid twenties I have been
obsessed with Indian food! The smells of cooking curry, the colours of all
the spices at the market and all the fresh ingredients have stole my heart
forever!


I still remember that restaurant in Rajasthan that made me discover vegetarian Korma – the silky smooth and rich sauce made with coconut milk and cardamom.


Unfortunately, even though I tried over and over again to cook indian food at home, I never got it quite right.


So when I discovered Patak’s 3 steps cooking sauce kits you can imagine
how excited I was! With only three steps you can recreate the authentic
Indian taste at home , and it’s actually so easy and fast that anyone can
make it work!


Disclosure- this post was brought to you by Patak’s , all opinions remain
exclusively my own.


I love three step method- every package comes with Whole spices for the fragrance and aroma, spice paste for added depth and base sauce the base souse to complete the dish.


So I decided to make my favourite Paneer Korma foro lunch in our studio
last week ! I wanted to test it before serving it to my kids and now I know
they will love it too!


First up, I heated the star anise and cardamom until fragrant. Then, I added the Patak’s spice blend and 50 ml of water , and cooked it until the water has evaporated. Then I added paneer cheese in cubes and cooked for another five minutes ( you can make this with chicken or tofu too!)


Once it was all cooked I added the sauce base and let it simmer for another 15 minutes! I wish you could feel the smell! I garnished it with fresh cilantro and it was all ready!


Seriously, I never felt as a better cook then last week when I was making my very own Paneer Korma!

And best thing about it is that this source can be used on a pizza, with chicken or even with fish – it’s so versatile and so easy to make!

Disclosure- this post was brought to you by Patak’s, all opinions remain my
own.

Vegan beet hearty stew

January is always a month when everyone wants to eat healthier- after the holiday over the top eating habits we all feel like it’s time for more wholesome foods and better everyday routine. But usually, February hits and resolutions fade away, and we come back to our usual way of cooking, am I right?

Well, I’m all about small steps that end up forming new habits- so last year I challenged our family to one vegan meal a week- or at least two vegetarian meals every week. It was not about becoming vegan now, but about eating more vegetables, less meat and thinking more about nutrition value. Now, I’m also a mom of three young kids, and to be honest this last year was also very challenging for me – I don’t have that much time nor energy as I had before. So I subscribed our family to one of the meal boxes and made choosing vegan/vegetarian meals a priority.

But along the way I got used to cooking more and more veggies mixed with beans or grains, and finally last week I came up with my very own invention- this vegan beet stew, with white beans, kale, and ditalini pasta.

And what I love the most about this dish are all the mixed textures and spices. They make it so comforting and interesting- and the mix of cumin seeds, garlic and fresh dill make it somehow similar to a Polish Borsch, but with much more of a kick.

What you’ll need


Diced Beets 

  • Olive oil
  • pinch of coriander seeds diced
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • pinch of cumin
  • salt & pepper
  • 1 1/2 cup diced beets
  • White beans- 1 can 
  • Small pasta – 1 cup
  • Kale – 1 cup diced
  • Onions 1/2 cup
  • 1 cup vegetable bullion 
  • Fresh dill 

Heat olive oil and cook onions and spices until translucent then add garlic. 

Cook for a minute, and add a cup of hot bouillon , diced beets and a cup of ( uncooked) pasta. Let it all simmer around 6-7 min, then add beans and kale. Cook 5-7 more minutes. Serve and enjoy!


The best vegetarian chili

One of the best dishes for cold and windy November evenings is chilli : it warms up and comforts like nothing else really! And one of my favourite recipes is this vegetarian chili! It has lots of texture and plenty of taste, leaves you full and satisfied and is perfect for meatless Mondays! Not to mention how easy it is to prepare!

Also, this is one of those recipes that my kids devour in no time and my husband asks for a second serving every time I make it. And I love it on the spicy side but you can make it milder for your kids and then just add more fresh jalapeno and sriracha like I do.

  • What you’ll need:
  • 1 can tomato sauce
  • 2 large sweet potatoes
  • 1 can soaked red beans
  • 3 large carrots
  • lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cacao powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • couple of drops of sriracha
  • fresh cilantro
  • salt 7 pepper

Cut your veggies to pieces and cook them on olive oil for around 10 minutes, then add tomato sauce, couple drops of lime juice, cumin, cacao, cinnamon, salt , pepper and a drop or two ( or more if you like your chili spicey) of sriracha. Let it simmer for around 15 minutes and then add black beans. Cook on a low heat a little more, and serve with lots of fresh cilantro and a slice of fresh bread. You can add a bit of nachos and sour cream and some shredded cheese too, for an all dressed and really amazing vegetarian chili experience! Or you can keep or simple and vegan: its delicius either way!

 

 

So next time a case of cold monday hits you hard, try making this super easy and yummy vegetarian chili, I’m sure you’ll love it!

And if you do eat meat and have some grounded beef or chicken at home, then this recipe transforms pretty well in to a veggie lauded regular meet chilli. Just add you choice of that extra protein with veggies at the very beginning and add one more cup of tomato souse!

Enjoy!

Chicken zaatar pizza

Chicken zaatar pizza

Recently I have been obsessed with zaatar! I’ve been adding it almost everywhere, and ended up discovering the most delicious Chicken zaatar pizza ever! And believe me, it’s not an exaggeration!

And if you still don’t know zaatar, then all you need to know is that it’s a middle eastern herb blend made of dried thyme mixed with sesame seeds, dried sumac, salt and sometimes other herbs. You can sprinkle it on cream cheese, or mix with olive oil and dip fresh bread in it. Or you can use to make one of the most amazing pizzas out there!

Also, if you’ll use pita bread instead of a pizza dough, then not only you’ll save yourself time, but also you’ll end up with a super thin and delicious home-made pizza!

And I really encourage you to try all sorts of toppings with zaatar, and to spurge on real Parmesan cheese, as surprisingly it works amazingly well together!

Though this chicken zaatar pizza, is by far my favorite !

Chicken zaatar pizza

Chicken zaatar pizza

Chicken zaatar pizza

What you’ll need:

– Large pita bread
– 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
– 1/3 cup zaatar

– 1/2 cup grilled chicken cut in stripes
– 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese
– 1/4 cup Parmesan ( or cheddar)
– 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes cut in half’s
– 1/2 cup mushrooms cut in half’s

– Labneh cheese (optional)

In a small bowl mix extra virgin olive oil with as much zaatar as you need to make a paste ( around 1/3 cup) . Spread it evenly over your pita bread. Add chicken, cherry tomatoes and cover with cheese. Broil in the oven for around 5 minutes ( or until the cheese has melt and the chicken is warm). Add a bit of labneh to serve ( optional) . Enjoy!

Chicken zaatar pizza

Chicken zaatar pizza

Chicken zaatar pizza

You can also try a ham and three cheese option( Mozzarella Parmesan and Cheddar) , a vegetarian option where instead of chicken you’ll add lots mushrooms, or a grilled veggie one! Believe me, they are all amazing with zaatar!

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