Tasty Tuesday – Hazelnut & Carrot Top Pesto

Last week, my lovely friend’s lovely husband gave me some lovely organic carrots from their lovely garden.


My youngest worried that the luscious green tops would go to waste. I had heard that they were inedible, but Googled just to check. I was glad I did, because it turns out that these green leaves are bitter, but definitely edible and packed full of all the goodness you’d expect from leafy greens.


Now that I knew we could eat them, I wondered what best to turn them into. I settled on a pesto.  In this photo, you can see that the consistency is more that of a pâté than a pesto, so I added a little water (2-3 tablespoons) later and thinned it out. It tasted good either way.

Time: 15 mins      Serves: 4


3/4 cup Hazelnuts

Tops of about 14 carrots

12 basil leaves, shredded

3 cloves garlic, minced

Juice of 1 lemon

1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil

30g Mature Cheddar Cheese

Salt and Pepper to season



Toast the nuts in a dry frying pan until they colour slightly and release their aroma.

Remove the carrot leaves from the stalks. Discard stalks.

Puree nuts, garlic, lemon juice, carrot leaves and basil.

Add cheese and seasoning.

Add oil, a little at a time, and blend.


Note: A small red chilli, chopped and added with the garlic peps this recipe up slightly.

Eggplant in Yoghurt – Kashmiri-Style

Eggplant, aubergine, brinjal…..whatever you call it, this is a wonderfully versatile vegetable. In this recipe, it’s married with some of the ‘sweeter’ spices and natural yoghurt.  Just don’t ask me to count the calories…!




Time: 10 mins prep + 30 mins cooking     Serves: 4 


Vegetable for shallow frying

1 large aubergine, cut into thin discs

4 green cardamom pods, bruised

1/2 tsp fennel powder

1/2 tsp tumeric powder

1/2 tsp dried ginger powder

Pinch of asafoetida

300g natural yoghurt


Coriander leaves, chopped finely.



Heat the oil in a heavy-bottomed frying pan until it is very hot.

Fry the aubergine on both sides until it’s golden brown in colour.

Drain on kitchen paper and keep to one side.

Discard all but 1 tablespoon of oil.

Drop the cardamoms, spice powders and asafoetida into the oil.

Add the yoghurt immediately.

Season with salt and heat through, stirring constantly, until the gravy is heated through.

Add the fried aubergine and serve immediately, garnished with the chopped coriander.


Serve with plain white rice and lentils.

Tasty Tuesday – Greek Salad

This week’s Tasty Tuesday recipe is for a Greek salad that takes about 15 minutes to prepare from start to finish. It’s packed full of protein, vitamins, zinc and other trace minerals.

Great as a side dish, this is also wonderful as a main – and can be eaten with pita, baguette, foccacia or pasta for a complete meal.

Time: 15 mins      Serves: 4 


400g  Chickpeas (tinned), drained and rinsed

300g Black olives, halved

250g Halloumi, sliced

250g Cherry tomatoes, halved

1/4  Cucumber, sliced thickly

2  Spring onions, chopped

Juice of half a lemon

1 tablespoon of olive oil

Handful of basil leaves, torn

Salt and Pepper to season


Pan fry the halloumi, both sides, until it is slightly coloured. Remove from heat and leave to one side.

Mix lemon juice with olive oil.

Quarter the slices of cucumber.

Put chickpeas, olives, cucumber, tomatoes, spring onions and halloumi in a bowl. Add basil leaves. Drizzle lemon juice and olive oil mixture over the salad. Toss. Season. Serve. Enjoy!

Note: If you don’t have halloumi, you can use Mozzarella instead.