Niki’s Rosemary and Red pepper Sauce with Polenta Dumplings

2016, International, nikibakes.co.uk, Savoury, Spring, Super Quick

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Happy May everybody!

Let’s kick off this warm and lovely month with a meat-free Monday dish ready to make for the beautiful bank holiday. Guys, you know how much I truly adore polenta but I have now come to use it as one of the main staples of my evening dishes. With Summer just on the horizon, polenta is fantastic for those light evening meals. I just love its versatility, you really can eat it all year round, hot or cold and this includes my easy and addictive polenta dumplings.

Roasted red peppers make a lovely introduction here too as they not only contain high levels of vitamin c but give an almost fruity like flavour to the sauce, complementing perfectly with the smooth and creamy texture of the polenta. Rosemary just adds to the delicate aromas of the garlic and red chilli flakes (optional!) here and it contains anti-inflammatory properties also. So I want to share this lovely dish with you guys…it couldn’t be simpler, let me show you how to make this tasty and nutritious dish:

 

All you need to serve 2 is:

 

For the Rosemary and Red Pepper sauce:

 

2 red bell peppers, sliced into chunks

2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped,

A handful of rosemary, chopped

2 tomatoes, roughly chopped

2 tablespoons of organic avocado oil (Olivado is great) or organic olive oil (Mr organic is perfect)

½ teaspoon of Himalayan salt and cracked black pepper

1/3 cup of water

 

For the Polenta Dumplings:

100g of polenta

½ teaspoon of chilli flakes (optional)

½ teaspoon of finely chopped rosemary

½ teaspoon of Himalayan salt and cracked black pepper

1 tablespoon of organic avocado oil (Olivado is great) or organic olive oil (Mr organic is perfect)

 

 

 

 

 

Make sure your oven is preheated to 200ºC or gas mark 6 and scatter your tomatoes, peppers, garlic and rosemary onto your baking sheet. Gloss with your choice of oil and season with salt and cracked black pepper to taste and roast for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, get your polenta cooked according to the packet instructions. Let it set for 15 minutes in a small pyrex dish whilst checking in with your roasted red peppers. Once 15 minutes has passed, heat your saucepan over a medium high heat and toss in all your roasted veggies and herbs and cook it down for a good 7-10 minutes. Pour in your water and cover your pan, let it simmer for around a further 10 minutes until a thick sauce comes together.

Whilst that is happening grab a teaspoon and scoop out little balls from your now set polenta mixture. Pop it on the baking sheet you already used for your roasted red peppers (less washing up- yay!), season and drizzle with olive oil, back into the oven it goes for 10 minutes until it becomes crispy and golden. Keep mixing your sauce now and again and check the seasoning while your dumplings are cooking.  You are now ready to dish up your sauce once it’s thickened up and top generously with your yummy polenta dumplings. Easy! Go on, give meat-free Monday a go today!

 

Happy Baking!

 

Niki

Recipe Creator

Niki’s Fruity Chilli Jam

2016, Healthy, International, Spring, Super Quick
chillijammy

www.facebook.com/nikibakes

 

Hello my lovely readers,

As you all know by now, I’m a massive chilli fan, I can’t get enough of the deliciously flavourful fruit. My chilli jam is quick, straightforward and won’t blow your socks off (so all you foodies who have milder taste buds can still enjoy :P).

 

In fact you can truly control the heat intensity of your jam by the choice of your chilli (you can find this by your desrired intensity ) –

Super hot – hot –  I would recommend birds eye or habanero
moderate to mild – I would recommend jalapeño or chipotleThe choice is yours but feel free to experiment!

It’s aromatic and truly fruity, you’ll see what I mean when you make it for yourself and trust me once you start making my fruity chilli jam, you’ll be hooked.

I have tweaked a few of the ingredients from the conventional recipes to make it a healthier version of the classic chilli jam by swapping out the standard caster sugar for xylitol. This sustainable and natural sweetener is that is sourced from plants so it’s easily digestible.

 

This jam keeps for up to 2 months in the fridge and is the perfect accompaniment to meat, fish and vegetable dishes, it’s a very versatile jam indeed.

 

I personally love to have it with some grass fed lamb chops or on the side with my steamed veggies.

All you need is:
8-10 yellow, orange and/or red organic chillies, deseeded (regardless of variety) and finely processed in a food processor
A handful of organic cherry tomatoes, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon of rice vinegar
1 teaspoon of tamari
1/2 teaspoon of finely grated ginger
2 garlic cloves, crushed finely
1 tablespoon of avocado or olive oil
5 tablespoons of xylitol

Simply heat your pan over a moderate to high flame and soften your ginger and garlic for just a moment. Once the aromas start wafting out, add in all your chillies and stir for a couple of minutes. (Your eyes may begin to water a little but just remember that you’re cooking out most of the raw heat from the chillies anyway and is in no way an indication of how your chilli jam will taste). Next, add In your chopped tomatoes, rice vinegar, tamari and xylitol, mixing well until all the xylitol has dissolved into your jam. Cook this down for a good 15 minutes and you’ll see very quickly how it thickens and becomes sticky and saucy…it’s a beautiful moment when that happens and when it does it’s time to take it off the heat. Let it cool completely before you put into your sterilised jam jar and store in the fridge.

I do hope you give this one a try folks, you’ll love it for sure!

Happy Baking!
Niki B
Recipe Creator