Just a quick recipe of something that I sometimes make as a side dish and which last week I whipped up as a batch to pop in the freezer. I love veg but on a weeknight, I’m impatient and even though realistically this only takes a few minutes to whip up, I’m a clean-up dodger too and the concept of getting the processor out of the cupboard and having to put it away again is too much for me. So I try to prep easy to microwave veg and keep it in the freezer for such evenings. The recipe is inspired by a Nigella Lawson side which she serves with pan fried salmon and crispy bits of bacon – quite often how I eat it too.
Serves 4 – 155 kcal per serving
750g Frozen Garden Peas
1tbsp Garlic Paste
100g Light Soft Cream Cheese
Sea Salt Flakes
Boil 750g frozen garden peas with the garlic paste until warmed through
Tip – I do this in the microwave in a plastic bowl for about 10 minutes – you could use a pan on the hop and achieve the same.
Tip – I don’t see why you couldn’t use petit pois or tinned garden peas here too.
Tip – I use jars of garlic paste which I get from the world food aisle of the supermarket – they’re cheaper than the same from the spice section and seem to contain much more actual garlic instead of fillers and oil. You could of course mash up a large clove of fresh garlic here but I’m lazy so I have jars.
Drain the warm peas and put into a food processor or blender – a food processor is preferable.
Blitz until fairly smooth – it won’t ever go smooth smooth because of the skins but stop at the texture you prefer.
Tip – When making a single portion of this I use a trusty mini chopper from Kenwood which is slightly less tedious than getting out a big processor. For about £15 they’re worth the investment if you often cook for 1 or 2.
Add the 100g light cream cheese and blitz again until combined.
Tip – You could use full fat crème cheese or crème fraiche or even double cream here but I like the tang of the cream cheese and its what I had in my fridge this week. It also keeps the calories down a bit.
Add sea salt flakes to taste. Add a little at a time and blitz quickly before tasting – you can add more but you can’t take it back out.
Divide the mix into 4 freezer bags, remove the air and seal. Leave to cool then pop in the freezer flattened to maximise space.
Tip – I use the sandwich bags from Ikea – the smallest green ones in this case – they’re excellent as they’re good and thick, come in a variety of sizes and have a double seal. Otherwise I’d recommend zip-lock bags to minimise chances of spillage.
Tip – Write in black permanent pen on the sandwich bag what it is and the date you made it. I tend to write the calorie count on too for my easy reference.
To use – place a frozen portion on a thin plate and microwave for few minutes – I sometimes break the bulk of the contents up with my fingers while still in the bag to speed things up. Alternatively, empty the contents into a saucepan and warm through.