Basil and Feta Story

Hey guys! This week I am going to feature on these two ingredients which are BASIL and FETA. Do check out Greek yogurt story last week!

Basil is a kind of herbs which has various health benefits, including anti-inflammatory effects, DNA protection, antibacterial and antioxidants properties. I really love its fragrant smell and it can enhance the flavour of any dishes, be it Western or Asian.  

Feta cheese is a cheese type made up of whole sheep's milk which has a creamy and crumbly texture. It has a tangy and salty taste, hence making it suitable to be used in salad or as table cheese. However, it has saturated fat and cholesterol which is bad for our health. 

Day 1

Zuchinni and feta fritter

- Zuchinni 
- Danish feta
- Plain flour 
- Egg 
- Onion/shallot 
- Salt and pepper

Recipe here.

Note: I put less proportion of plain flour in the mixture and hence it turned out to be an omelette-like fritter. But it was still yummy! Have a little play with it. 

Zucchini and feta fritter

Day 2

Salad with basil vinaigrette dressing 

- Baby spinach
- Grapes
- Feta cheese
- Basil leaves
- Red wine vinegar
- Dijon mustard
- Sugar, salt, black pepper
- Extra virgin olive oil 

Recipe for basil vinaigrette dressing here.

Note: You can reduce the quantity of red wine vinegar if you want it to be less sour. I substitute kosher salt with normal salt. Extra virgin olive oil is a must and do not substitute it with normal olive oil. You can keep the vinaigrette in fridge for few days or even weeks as long as it is kept in an airtight container. 

Basil vinaigrette 

Baby spinach and feta salad with basil vinaigrette dressing

Day 3

Basil pesto penne

- Penne
- Mushroom
- Bacon
- Garlic and onion 
- Baby spinach
- Basil vinaigrette dressing
- Pine nuts
- Basil leaves
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Feta cheese 
- Garlic cloves

1) Prepare basil pesto here
2) Saute garlic, onion, mushroom and bacon together till you can smell the aroma. 
3) Prepare a pot of boiling water and cook the penne. 
4) Mix the penne together with the sautéed products. 
5) Pour the basil pesto onto the penne. 
6) Prepare salad with the dressing. 

Note: Remember to toast pine nuts in the oven or on a frying pan with.  I substitute parmesan cheese with feta cheese. Do not put too much garlic cloves as the pesto will be very spicy. 

Penne with basil pesto + Baby spinach salad with basil vinaigrette dressing

Day 4

Ciabatta roll with bacon, mushroom and basil pesto 

- Ciabatta roll
- Bacon
- Mushroom
- Garlic, Onion
- Basil pesto 
- Baby spinach 
- Black grapes 
- Basil vinaigrette dressing

1) Cut ciabatta roll into half. Toast it in an oven or sandwich maker or on a pan with drizzle of olive oil 
2) Saute garlic, onion, bacon and mushroom. 
3) Serve them on the ciabatta roll together with the basil pesto. 
4) Prepare baby spinach salad and dressing. 

Ciabatta roll with bacon, mushroom and basil pesto + Baby spinach salad 

Day 5 

Couscous with basil pesto and stew zucchini 

- Couscous
- Basil pesto 
- Mushroom
- Bacon
- Zucchini 
- Onion and Garlic
- Leek  
- Chicken stock  

Method : 
1) Boil the chicken stock and put couscous inside. (Remember to put the couscous in only if the stock is boiling) 
2) Cover the pan and let it sit for few minutes until it is cooked. If it feels crunchy, it is not cooked yet. 
3) Saute garlic, onion, muschroom, bacon, leek and zucchini in a pan. Pour chicken stock over it and let it cook for few minutes. 
4) Serve the couscous with basil pesto and stew zucchini. 

Note: My couscous turned out to be sticky which indicated a failed one. Put 1:1 ratio of chicken stock and couscous. Fluff the couscous when it is done. Do not put salt into the stewed zucchini as the chicken stock is flavourful enough. Alternately you can cook couscous in boiling water instead of chicken stock.

Couscous with basil pesto + Stew zucchini 

Day 6

Pear Lassi

- Pear
- Greek yogurt
- Honey

1) Core the pear and remove its skin. Microwave it so that it becomes soft. 
2) Mix few tablespoons of honey, Greek yogurt and pear together in a blender.
3) Serve it in a glass and dust with cinnamon powder.

Recipe here.

Note: It might feel grainy due to the texture of the pear. In addition, Greek yogurt might let the lassi to have some sourness. You can consider to use plain yogurt. 

Pear lassi
Love, Victoria

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