Sunday 25 September 2016

Forkful's speedy suppers

Aoife McElwain

Published 31/07/2015 | 02:30

Tomato salad with honey & feta toasts
Tomato salad with honey & feta toasts
Aubergine and chickpea salad

Salads for supper is a summertime treat. Our long evenings are ideal for eating crunchy vegetables soaked in sweet dressings outside, al fresco. That's providing the weather cooperates, of course.

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This week we're hedging our bets on tucking in to a tomato salad from the comfort of our back garden, and also hoping to add our Moroccan-influenced aubergine salad to the platter of our mid-week barbecue. One can dream…

Tomato salad with  honey & feta toasts

Serves 2

Prep Time: 15 minutes

INGREDIENTS

300g of cherry tomatoes

Half a red onion

1 teaspoon of red wine vinegar

1 tablespoon of olive oil

Salt

Pepper

About 2 tablespoons of feta

2 slices of bread

2 tablespoons of honey

Half an avocado

A few leaves of fresh oregano or basil

METHOD

1 Slice the cherry tomatoes in half and place them into a large mixing bowl. Very thinly slice the red onion and add to the tomatoes. Pour in the red wine vinegar, olive oil and a generous pinch of salt and pepper. Mix everything well and set aside.

2 In a small bowl, use the back of a spoon to mix the feta until it is more creamy than crumbly. When you're ready to serve the salad, toast the bread and slather it with the smooth feta. Drizzle the toast with honey.

3 Divide the tomatoes into two serving bowls. Top with slices of avocado and a few freshly torn leaves of oregano or basil. Serve with the feta and honey toasts.

Aubergine and chickpea salad

Serves 2

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cooking Time: 15 minutes

INGREDIENTS

1 aubergine

3 tablespoons of olive oil

1 teaspoon of ground cumin

Salt

Pepper

1 x 400g tin of chickpeas

Half a red onion

Juice of half a lemon

1 tablespoon of honey

50g of feta

1 tablespoon of freshly chopped parsley

METHOD

1 Heat one tablespoon of olive oil on your griddle pan (a frying pan will do if you don't have a griddle pan). Slice the aubergine into rounds about 1cm thick. Brush each side generously with olive oil and sprinkle evenly with cumin. Add a pinch of salt and pepper before frying the slices in batches. The slices need about 5 to 8 minutes on both sides. Once cooked, slice the rounds in half and set aside.

2 Drain the chickpeas and rinse under cold water. Place in a large bowl. Slice the red onion and add to the bowl, along with the juice of half a lemon and a tablespoon of honey. Season with salt and pepper and mix well.

3 Divide the chickpea salad between two plates. Arrange the aubergine slices on top. Finish with a crumbling of feta and a sprinkling of freshly chopped parsley.

This week's storecupboard essential: Red Wine Vinegar

I bring a tart tanginess to my salad dressings by adding a splash of red wine vinegar. It's also useful to add a drop to boiling water when you're poaching eggs, as the vinegar helps to firm up the whites and leaves them with a pinkish hue.

Photos: Mark Duggan

Irish Independent

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