I did it … I think!

I love Jamie Oliver’s book  15 Minute Meals, but lately, had kind of forgotten about it due to the frenzy and mess achieved in making any of the meals.  Wouldn’t it be nice to have someone actually prep all the bits for you, cut the vege or at least have it washed and prepared on the bench, the jug pre boiled, and everything required within easy reach! And then of course, clean your kitchen up afterwards, while you sit with an after dinner sticky, feet resting on a lovely soft pouf.

I had none of that tonight, in fact, I even had to go buy the supplies to make the meal. From arriving in the supermarket carpark, to having the meal on the table took me 40 mins total.  I am sure that I spent at least 15mins in the Supermarket and driving each way takes another 5mins each.  So, I had at the most 20mins to cook the meal. I think I can actually say that I cooked the meal in 15 minutes!!!

The meal of choice tonight was Gorgeous Green Chicken with Herby Vegetable Couscous and Tzatziki. The end result should look like this:

Gorgeous Greek Chicken

I’m a bit of a fan of raw vegetables, this recipe calls for most of the vegetables to remain raw, just be finely chopped and mixed through the couscous, so kind of perfect.  There is a freshness that only raw vegetables can give. I didn’t take too many pictures as I cooked as, I was trying to cook it in 15 Minutes. I love a good challenge, do you?

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A little blurry, but this is the vege all chopped in the food processor and ready to be mixed with the couscous.

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The chicken all nicely seasoned, crispy and brown

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Aftermath, mess and a cluttered bench! What do you expect…life is happening too – lunch boxes, discarded glasses and the medicine cup.

IMG_0230And on the table ready to be consumed, in just on 15minutes. (I think!)  mmm….Lemon and mint are perfect companions anywhere, anytime and I just love the lemony minty goodness of the Tzatziki Jamie recommends to accompany the chicken and vegetable couscous, particularly good if the chilli you use is awesomely fresh and spicy!  The kids even gave this the thumbs up.

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Luscious Lemon Macaroons

I’ve had a bit of a baking week and my fridge is currently experiencing an abundance of sweet treats – clementine slice, chocolate peppermint slice and  lemon macaroons. The macaroons are currently curing, ripening or whatever you would like to call it.  It is best to leave fresh macaroons to ripen in the fridge in an airtight container for at least 24 hours after making them.  By doing this, the meringue/macaroon part absorbs some of the moisture from the filling and this is what gives them that lovely chewy texture while leaving the outer shell crisp.

A friend popped in for coffee and a catch up this morning, so we couldn’t resist giving the macaroons a taste test. They need to be left a little longer before they reach optimal deliciousness.

My little mistake from yesterday of tossing the sugar in the egg white straight off does not appear to have had a negative impact on the macaroons. They have puffed up nicely and have an excellent foot on them.

Yesterday, because I was using a new variety of almond meal (ground almonds) I decided that I would try making them without putting the almond meal and icing sugar through the foodprocessor. Instead, I seived the icing sugar and almond meal together. My macaroons have a bit of a rough texture, so with my next batch, it will be back to the drying in the oven and then processing before I fold it in to the egg whites.