Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Simple Storecupboard Supper

Yesterday was the hottest day of the year so far here in the UK, so it would have been a crime not to dine outside on our beautiful deck and make the most of a balmy evening. This easy salad took me about ten minutes to assemble, and was just the ticket washed down with a refreshing Peroni. It was a happy accident that all we had in the way of fresh veg was an avocado and a couple of juicy tomatoes - together one of my favourite foodie combinations. The rest was thrown together with store cupboard staples, for which I make no apologies.

Ingredients
  • 1 perfectly ripe avocado
  • 2 medium sized tomatoes, also ripe
  • Splash of lime juice
  • Olive oil
  • Tin of mixed beans, drained and rinsed
  • Half a tin of spinach (well squeezed)
  • Handful of olives
  • Generous dollop of pesto
  • Teaspoon of minced ginger
  • Dash of tabasco
  • Plain natural yoghurt
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Method
Peel and slice the avocado and slice the tomatoes quite rustically, arranging both alternately around a plate or shallow bowl, sprinkle over a little lime juice and season with salt and pepper. Mix together the beans, spinach, pesto, ginger and olives, adding extra olive oil as needed to create a smooth texture. Season to taste, and for an extra kick, add a dash of Tabasco. Pile on top of the pre-arranged tomatoes and avocados and finish off with a spoonful of natural yoghurt. If I'd had some fresh basil, I would have used some as a garnish, but instead I swirled a little more pesto into the yoghurt to make it look pretty. Drizzle the whole thing with a little olive oil for that added Mediterranean flourish. Eat alfresco with good company and beer.

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This morning's BBC Breakfast reported on a new study from the British Journal of Cancer which claims that following a Mediterranean style diet - specifically less red meat, and more peas, beans and lentils - could cut the risk of cancer by 12%. Now, you might think this is stating the obvious somewhat, but that doesn't stop me feeling quietly smug, as I've been doing just that for years!
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