Tag Archives | basil

rosmarino pasta with roasted tomatoes, feta and olives

 rosmarino pasta with tomatoes, feta and olives

A few years ago I made a very simple but very delicious dish which involved baking feta and olives in a thick tomato sauce. It’s a wonderful appetizer or warm dip for crusty bread. I remember at the time thinking it would be a delicious sauce for pasta, so this inspired today’s recipe. Instead of making a sauce using tinned tomatoes, I used fresh Mediterranean baby vine tomatoes. It also occurred to me, again, that roasting or baking cheese with things is a superb idea and I should do it more often. Especially feta which is not my favourite cheese. I find the salt over powering and the flavour in general quite one-dimensional. I rarely add it to salad unless it’s a Greek salad, and if I do, I prefer to crumble it over to more evenly distribute the taste. The flavour and saltiness of feta work well with this dish and my baked tomato version because the tomatoes temper it and when hot out the oven it crumbles into the pasta beautifully.  Continue Reading →


tomato and basil crostini with whipped goats cheese

tomato crostini with whipped goats cheese

tomato and basil crostini with whipped goats cheese

tomato and basil crostini with whipped goats cheese

To continue on a slight party theme, and to do a recipe that is perfect for summer and entertaining at this time of year, I give you these simple and delicious crostini. They work perfectly for a light lunch or to serve as a snack with drinks. Rustic and packed with flavour, just the way I like it.

Simply take a baguette – I prefer to let it be a little stale, and cut slices as thick as you like. I think around 1.5cm works well. Brush them lightly with olive oil, place on a large baking sheet and roast in a 180 C / 350 F oven for 10 minutes. Just until they start going golden around the edges. I used a basil infused olive oil which I love, but any good quality will do. Allow them to cool. Continue Reading →


roasted tomato and red pepper pasta with and aubergine and olives

roasted tomato and red pepper pasta with and aubergine and olives

I have become somewhat obsessed with Piedmontese Peppers and all the flavours of this very simple and exquisite dish. I wanted to try to capture some of that with this pasta. I love roasted aubergine too so added that in, along with a good handful of back olives, cherry tomatoes and torn basil leaves. It’s a dry pasta vs one drowned in the ubiquitous red sauce. The peppers and tomatoes give off amazing juice during the roasting which together with the olive oil makes an adequate coating for my pasta. I add lots of grated Parmesan to finish it off too.

I add the anchovies at the end like you would with Piedmontese Peppers. This way you max out on their flavour and they don’t disintegrate during the cooking. Add as much as you like, but I think 2 – 3 tablespoons is amazing. Continue Reading →


pea and asparagus risotto with basil and lemon

pea and asparagus risotto with basil and lemon

I love pasta and risotto with fresh herbs and lemon. It gives the whole dish a stunning light wake up call. Basil, lemon, peas and Parmesan in a creamy risotto are a heavenly match.

asparagus and pea risotto with basil and lemon

I made this in my Breville Multi Chef, which has a special risotto setting. Yes, this means exactly what you think it does. No stirring. So, as much as I don’t really mind all the stirring, it can become a bit tiresome being glued to the stove for 25 odd minutes, especially if you dont have a glass of wine in your hand a friend talking to you.

What occurred to me when making risotto for the first time in this appliance was I was able to do half my prep while other things were on the go. So this dish took a total of 35 minutes from start to finish. Continue Reading →


corn fritters with basil, chilli and lemon


I really love vegetables fritters and this recipe with corn, basil and chilli hit the spot for me. I kept the corn kernels whole, and don’t mind them breaking apart slightly for the benefit of the crunch they deliver. If you prefer them more solid, I would suggest blending half the batter with a stick blender to achieve this. Continue Reading →


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