Side dishes

Broad beans


This was my nanny’s recipe to cook broad beans which I now use to make them with a variety of cereals, pasta or rice.

Ingredients:

1/2 kg of fresh broad beans
2 big onions
EVO oil
1 glass of white wine
salt



Peel the onions, chop them in slices and put them with some olive oil and salt to cook slowly until they reach a light brown colour. 
Add the boroad beans to the onion, then the wine and salt. If they’re not cooked when all the wine has evaporated add a little water so they don’t burn.

Side dishes

Kale chips

Kale chips can be a really tasty and healthy snack or an original side dish. It’s extremely rich in nutrients, and very easy to make. 


Pre heat the oven at 175°C. Meanwhile wash and dry the leaves of kale, strip them throwing the leafstalk away, place them on an oven tray and add salt to taste and some olive oil on top. Let cook in the oven until the sides of the kale start getting a light brown colour. Once cooked it feels like burned paper, light and crispy. It can be eaten either hot or cold.

Side dishes

Friar’s beard (agretti)

The Italian name agretti is commonly used in English to refer to Salsola soda which is an edible, succulent shrub native to the mediterranean basin. Being a halophyte, salt-tolerant plant, it grows on coastal regions and can be irrigated with salt water.

It is a refreshing side dish with mint sauce or can be done in a pan to make pasta or risotto.


Ingredients:

A bunch of fresh agretti
EVO oil
salt
fresh mint leaves

Cut out and use only the green leaves, wash them in a big bowl in cold water then boil for about 10 minutes.
Separately wash the mint leaves and mix them into a cream with some olive oil and salt. You can add a pinch of nixed coloured peppers to the mixture.
Once the leaves are ready put the oily cream on top.
They can be eaten hot or cold according to ypur tastes.
Another way to serve them is by adding olive oil and some lemon juice or vinegar instead of the meant leaves mix. Although this is how my nanny Emma used to make them for me.

Side dishes

Green beans in fresh tomato sauce.

How many children won’t eat their veggies? They will love this option!

Ingredients:

Eat 2/3 people

1/2 kg of fresh green beans
4/5 rape tomatoes
2 big onions
EVO oil
1 glass white wine
salt

Cut the 2 ends of each bean and cut them in 2/3 parts each. Wash in fresh water and boil in a big cooking pot.

While the beans are being cooked wash the tomatoes and mash them until you obtain a cream using a food mixer. 



Separately peel the onions and chop them in thin slices. Put them in a casserole with some olive oil and cook until they get a nice light brown colour, then add the glass of wine and leave on heat until there is no liquid left in the casserole.


Once the onions are ready pour the tomato cream into the casserole with the onion, stir and let cook. I usually add a few fresh basil leaves to the tomato sauce to improve its taste.



Finally add the cooked green beans to the tomato sauce, let it cook altogether for a short while and it’s ready. 

Side dishes

Bread with mint sauce

image

This is not actually a recipe but an idea for a side dish or a snack. It might be a pleasant and easier to digest substitute for the British version of garlic bread especially for those who, like me, can’t stand the smell of garlic. Moreover it is a refreshing option in the spring and summer when the weather is nice or hot, also nice to have with a salad or boiled veggies.

My parents didn’t let us eat Nutella and similar stuff ( I can now understand why, but I couldn’t as a child) so for breakfast or afternoon snack my nanny would give us bread with healthy olive oil and a variety of veggies and this was one of my favourite.

Ingredients:

About 20 leaves
1/2 a glass of EVO oil
Salt

Put all the ingredients in a tall glass, use a food mixer to obtain an oily cream.
Put an amount of mint oil according to your tastes on top of a slice of bread or toasted bread.

Side dishes

Cabbage in beer

This is one of the traditional veggies my grandma used to cook for us to have as a side dish when she cooked sausages ons cold winter days.  I still make it with veggie sausages and everyone loves it at home.      

Ingredients:

Eat 4

1/2 cabbages (depending on their size)
A can of beer (33ml)
EVO oil
salt
red hot chilly peppers (deied or in oil)

Cut the cabbage in slices into a bowl to wash it. Put it all in a casserole, add some olive oil, the whole can of beer and some salt. Let it cook for a while with a lid on. When the beer has evaporated add a glass of water or vegetable soup and some hot chilly peppers, the amount of which will depend on how hot the chilly are on how spicy you like your food. It tastes great without chilly.
let it get a nice yellow/brown colour and it’s ready to eat.

Side dishes

Green beans in fresh mint sauce.

image

This simple dish is one of the greatest memories of my childhood, it reminds me of my grandmother who used to cook for the whole family. She cooked green beans in different ways but this was our favourite in the summer. The mint sauce was tasty and refreshing and I loved it when we were serve it on toast for breakfast.

Ingredients:

1 kg of green beans
20 gr of fresh mint leaves
EVO oil
Salt

Cut the beans in small pieces (make 3/4 pieces out of each bean) into a bowl filled with water, wash and then boil them in a cooking pot.
Wash the mint leaves the put them in a food mixer with 1/2 glass of olive oil, some salt and a few almonds previously mashed. Mix together until you obtain a creamy sauce, some people like to find the bits of leaves.
Strain the beans, put them in a tray or bowl then pour the sauce on top.

They can be served hot or cold, they’re actually great served cold in the summer especially when the weather is hot.

image