healthy summer's lunch

A Healthy Summer’s Lunch

“Every day should start with a glass of Champagne”

These are the VERY wise words of my absolutely fabulous mother, who’s love for good food, quality wine and great company has always inspired me in the kitchen. A trip to the French countryside to visit mum was just what I needed after finishing my time on the yachts – not a mast in sight! In the manner of “Ab-Fab’s” Patsy and Eddie, we would let the inspiration (and wine) flow in the kitchen with the help of a bottle of Champers or Rose and get creative – “Darling darling, sweetie darling!”

Nothing pairs better with a cold glass (or let’s be honest, bottle) of French wine than a fresh healthy summer’s lunch, enjoyed outdoors in the sunshine, overlooking the rolling hills of the Aquitaine. Here is a great little lunch menu to put together for your next girly-luncheon (I don’t know what the Gent-equivalent is I’m afraid…but this recipe is NOT sexist so guys get involved). Super easy but full of flavour and colour to brighten up your summer table!

For a decadent dessert to top off any delicious lunch, try these To-die-for Lemon Meringue Tartlets, or for a slightly lighter option, end off your lunch with a round of coffees and these gorgeous little Lavender and Lemon Butter Cookies!


Baked Cod in Parsley, Lemon, Chilli and Garlic Butter

Grilled Fennel, Citrus and Avocado Salad with Toasted Slivered Almonds and Pomegranate

Mediterranean Quinoa with Sundried Tomatoes, Grilled Zucchini, Feta and Basil

To serve:

Fresh Crusty Baguette and Herbed Olive Oil for Dipping


Baked Cod in Parsley, Lemon, Chilli and Garlic Butter

Serves 6

2 Large cod fillets, portioned into 6 equal pieces

2 Lemons, one juiced, one sliced into 6 slices

Handful fresh parsley, finely chopped

3 Garlic cloves, mashed

100g butter, melted

Chilli flakes or 1 large fresh chilli, thinly sliced

Maldon Sea Salt and cracked black pepper

  • Preheat the oven to 180Β°C
  • Drizzle an oven proof dish with a dash of olive oil and arrange your fish evenly in the dish
  • Combine the melted butter, lemon juice, garlic and chilli,
  • Brush the fish with the garlic butter and pour any leftover around the fish
  • Top each piece with a slice of lemon and bake for +/- 15 mins – depending on the thickness of the fillets
  • To serve, sprinkle with the hoped parsley and season with salt and cracked pepper
  • BISH BASH BOSH! Easy as.

Grilled Fennel, Citrus and Avocado Salad with Toasted Slivered Almonds and Pomegranate

Serves 6

2 Fennel Bulbs (green leafy tops removed) and thinly sliced

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

2 Oranges / Blood oranges, peeled and sliced

1/2 Ruby Grapefruit – peeled and sliced

1 Avocado, halved and sliced

6 Handfuls rocket

1 Handful toasted flaked almonds

Seeds from 1/2 Pomegranate

Maldon Sea Salt and cracked black pepper

  • Heat a good glug of olive oil in a large pan and sautee the fennel slices until browned and softened. Alternatively you can leave them raw if you prefer. I find cooking them a bit brings out their natural sweetness and takes away that harsh aniseed flavour which a lot of people don’t enjoy.
  • Allow to cool and assemble your salad as you wish with the remaining ingredients.Β Best served on a flat platter to showcase all the yummy ingredients and their colours. Serve with a dressing of your choice
  • BOOM! Easy Peasy…

Mediterranean Quinoa with Sundried Tomatoes, Grilled Zucchini, Feta and Basil

Serves 6

1 1/2 Cups Quinoa

3 Cups chicken or veg stock, cold

1 Large Zucchini, diced or sliced

Dried Herbs de Provence or Mediterranean Herbs

10-12 Sundried Tomatoes, drained and chopped

1 Large handful fresh basil, chopped

1 Handful crumbled feta cheese

Maldon Sea Salt and cracked black pepper

  • In a medium sized pot, bring the quinoa and stock to a boil, reduce the heat as low as possible and cover.
  • Let it sit for 15mins, stirring occasionally so the quinoa doesn’t stick the bottom.
  • The water should be well absorbed, I like my quinoa to have a bit of a crunch to it still, but if it’s not quite cooked enough for you just add a dash more water and keep cooking until it’s to your desired softness.
  • In the meantime, grill the zucchini, seasoning with the herbs, salt and pepper
  • Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and season to taste – YUM!

 

 

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