Thursday, July 20, 2006

40 Mins to Prepare a 3-Course Mediterranean Dinner

Oui, C'est possible!
I did it yesterday. I made an own version of my Potato & Leek soup. My Potato & Leek soup is unblended. Meaning, not mashed up. Anyway this soup only contains 5 ingredients other than olive oil, salt and pepper. So it should very easy to cook. Another motivation to cook this is it is very light. I read that leek soup is good for weight loss from the book, French Women Don't Get Fat by French author Mireille Guiliano. Well, mine contains potatoes....??

That was just my appetizer. My entree was quick to prepare. Al dente Tri-Colour Fuscili with Fresh Tomatoes, Garlic and Parsley. It only took the time to cook the fuscili. Perhaps, 15min at the most.

POTATO & LEEK SOUP (aka Soupe Aux Poireaux et Pommes De Terre)

Ingredients
5 Leeks, only the white part, chopped into 2 cm
5 potatoes, peeled and diced into 2 cm cubes
2 carrots, peeled and chopped into small pieces
3 stalks of celery, chopped into 1cm pieces
1 large onion, diced
3-4 tablespoons of dried parsley
3 Tablespoons of olive oil
Salt & Pepper

Heat Olive Oil in a large pot in high heat. Fry onion and leeks until transparent. Then add potatoes and fry for 2-3 mins before adding carrots and celery. When the vegetables become a little brown, add 2 litres of water to it. Bring it to boil and add parsley. Simmer it for another 10-15 mins until the potatoes are soft. Season it with salt and pepper.







Quick Tri-Colour Fusili with Fresh Tomatoes( aka Pâtes aux tomates fraîches)

Ingredients
Tri- Colour Fusili, enough for 3-4 person.
2 large ripe tomatoes
1 Garlic
3 Tablespoons of fresh parsley
5 tablespoon of olive oil
Coarse salt & fresh ground pepper

1. Cook fusili according to package instructions. ( Add 1 teaspoon of salt and 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the water used for cooking pasta. Personally I like pasta al dente)

2. Don't stand and watch, waiting for the pasta to get cooked. In order to cook this dish within12-15 mins, dice the tomatoes, chop the parsley leaves, crush the garlic and mix them in a bowl. This preparation should only take 1 min. Then I went to prepare my next dish: Stir-fried Mushroom with Tomatoes ( A side dish for my pasta. Don't get me wrong. The pasta is delicious by itself. I just made a side dish since I have lots of tomatoes and mushrooms in the fridge)

3. Strain fusili when it is cooked. And add it immediately with chopped ingredients. Season with more salt and fresh pepper. Drizzle the rest of the olive oil. Mix all together. Serve hot.


A note: The heat from the fusilli will gently cook the tomatoes. This is why this pasta tastes so refreshing. Nothing is overcooked or raw. Best of all, only 3 simple steps to prepare it. Just follow the highlighted green instructions :)

Stir-fried Mushrooms with tomatoes (aka Champignons Aux Tomates)
It's really just sliced mushrooms and diced tomatoes stir-fried in olive oil, garlic and dried parsley. Season with salt and pepper. That simple. Just use your own imagination to cook but it it should only take 5 mins.

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