If our early summer was a cause for concern for you — does sunshine at Easter mean grey skies in June? — distract yourself by eating platters of delicious salads outdoors.
Green beans are a much-maligned vegetable, due to their mistreatment at the hands of cooks who love to overboil them.
Give them a quick three minutes in hot water so that they retain their delightful crunch.
Our harissa spuds are a great breakfast, lunch and supper; they’re so simple and vibrant.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 3 minutes
300g green beans
3 tablespoons of olive oil
1 tablespoons of red wine vinegar
1 tablespoons of honey
Half a teaspoon Dijon mustard
50g feta cheese
1 Top and tail the green beans. Place in a saucepan of boiling water and bubble for three minutes. Drain and place in iced water, so that they retain their bright green colour while you assemble the other ingredients.
2 Finely slice the radishes. Make a dressing by mixing together the olive oil, red wine vinegar, honey and Dijon.
3 Divide the green beans and slices of radish through two bowls. Then simply crumble the feta cheese over each salad and drizzle with dressing. Add a pinch of salt and pepper and serve.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 35 minutes.
1 kg baby potatoes
1 bulb of garlic
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
2 tablespoons of olive oil
4 tablespoons of natural yoghurt
4 tablespoons of water
Half tablespoon harissa paste
Finely shredded mint
1 Pre-heat your oven to 200c/180c/gas mark 6.
2 Slice each potato in half and place into a roasting dish. Slice the lemon into quarters and place around the potatoes. Slice the bulb of garlic in half and place in the roasting tray. Sprinkle with the cumin seeds and drizzle with the olive oil.
Roast for 30 to 35 minutes, until cooked through and golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
3 To serve, mix together the yoghurt, water and harissa paste. Place the roasted potatoes on a serving platter and drizzle with the harissa yoghurt. Finish with a sprinkling of freshly chopped mint. This dish is lovely on its own or with some roast meat on the side.
Fry any leftovers with a few eggs for breakfast the following day.
Harissa paste: I've told you about this spicy North African paste before but, just in case you missed it the first time, seek out a tube of Le Phare du Cap Bon, available in specialist food shops and well-stocked supermarkets.