Post Food Extravaganza...detox

I've been away from London on a food tour of Montreal, New York and Toronto, to do some food research and get some new culinary inspiration (yes, yes, it's a tough life). I can honestly say that after a month of eating like it could be my last meal, my body is officially starting to rebel against me. The first omen was when I walked away from a street food truck in Toronto offering free poutine tasting....clearly if my stomach could not be enticed by free poutine, something was wrong. So I vowed once I returned to London, that I would do a little detox and eat slightly healthier, but still delicious food. Also, I've been reading up on vegetarian food and thought this would be a great chance to out some vegetarian recipes! 

Day One of Detox

After a trip to the East Street Market, picked up some lovely fresh herbs and veggies and decided to do a Morrocan Style Nicoise Salad. 

1 Avocado
2 Tomatoes (or sun dried tomatoes)
2 Eggs
1 Green Onion
1 Pomegranate
Handful of French Beans or Green Beans
1 Bag of your fav leafy salad greens
1/2 jar of Morrocan Black Olives Za'atar (Middle Eastern Spice Mix of salt, sumac, sesame seeds and spices) 
Some Mint 
Some Cilantro

1 Lemon1 Tbsp Dijon Mustard3-4 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 clove of garlic 

*FYI - if you don't want to make your own dressing, you can omit the lemon, dijon and olive oil bit and just use a good quality olive oil dressing, but making dressing is super easy. In fact the BF can even make it, that's all I'm saying*

Now, the key to cooking is to be organized. The salad from start to finish took me about 20 minutes and that includes me deciding to roast my tomatoes in the oven to be fancy (if case you are feeling adventurous - cut tomatoes, slather in olive oil, salt, pepper, fresh thyme, garlic and oregano and bake at 350°F for about 20 minutes. 

1. In a small pot, add two eggs and cover with water. Cook on high heat. I like my eggs runny, so I bring the water to a boil, then turn down to a simmer for 3-4 minutes. At the same time put a small pot of salted water to blanch your green beans. 

2. Ah..Pomegranates, they are delicious but a bit tricky to get out. But a fellow chef taught me this trick to prevent the seeds from flying everywhere - cut it in half and submerge in water, in a large bowl. Then you can use your fingers or a spoon to de-seed them. 

3. Blanch the green beans, cook for a minute or until desired (I like my green beans al dente) and then drain and rinse in cold water. 

4. Cut avocado ,tomato and green onion as desired, I just diced the avocado and julienned the green onion. Chiffonade (fancy kitchen speak for cut up finely) the mint and cilantro.

5. Prepare dressing. Mince garlic clove, put into a small container with a lid. Add mustard, olive oil and 1/4 of the lemon squeezed (hold the seeds). Shake with vigor until emulsified. Yup easy, right. 

6. Assemble salad and eat. 

Conclusion - I love vegetarian food when it is fresh and flavourful and not trying to be meat.