Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Side Orders

Finding things to go with easy suppers can sometimes be more of a problem than grilling some chops or roasting a chicken.  Putting on some rice or bunging some potatoes in the oven to bake is simple enough, but what about the vegetables?  Imaginative, tasty ideas are always useful and I thought, today, I'd share another of my favourite side dishes with you.  These courgettes are really easy, and really tasty.  The 'secret ingredient' is balsamic glaze which you can get in Sainsbury's and, I believe, in Tesco.  As an added bonus these are delicious cold for lunch the next day, with some shaved parmesan over the top and some nice bread to mop up the juices.  Lovely as part of a mixed antipasti first course as well, if you can bear to cook them the day before and let them cool.

Roasted Balsamic Courgettes

4 tbsp olive oil
1 head of garlic, separated into peeled cloves
3 courgettes
balsamic glaze (and see above)
parsley, roughly chopped

Pour the olive oil into a roasting pan and add the halved garlic cloves.  Pop the tin into a 180°c oven  for 5 minutes while you prepare the courgettes.  Halve them lengthways, then chop into 2cm chunks.  Tip these into the roasting tin and toss well to coat them in the garlicky oil.  Roast for 20 minutes, then squeeze over a good souse of the balsamic glaze.  Toss again and return to the oven for another 10 minutes.  Throw over a mass of chopped parsley to serve. Good hot, great warm - and gorgeous cold too.  Result!


Helen said...


hello, can I pick your brain please!. I treated myself to a slow cooker today after hearing much praise about them. I work full-time and it sounds an ideal way to have a meal just about done when I get home. I saw that you have cooked a chicken in yours and wanted to ask something. The book I have got with the slow cooker says that I have to cover any joint I cook with water/liquid. Is this really necessary or do you cook a chicken or other joint whole without additional liquid?
Would appreciate your advice.

Cath said...


I have never put ANY liquid in with any joints I cook in my slow cooker. My mother-in-law bought her slow cooker in the 1970s and has been cooking chickens and all manner of joints in hers this way ever since, with no ill effects. I actually threw away the booklet that came with my slow cooker as I cannot see the point in a cooking device which has you cook all the ingredients before they get anywhere near it!! Get in touch if you need any ore help - and try my sweet-and-sour chicken recipe for the slow cooker, it's lush x

Anonymous said...


thanks for the advice, I will go ahead and cook chicken on Sunday WITHOUT it being soaked in liquid!. I will try your receipe thanks, does indeed sound yummy. Switched it on this morning at 6am when I left for work (first go with it) and when I walked in just now the beef casserole smells yummy!.
Thanks again for your help
Have a good weekend


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