Prawn Spaghetti

This blog is dying, isn’t it?

I wish I had a good enough excuse for the absence, or even an exciting one, like being on holiday. Truth is, I’ve been lazy. And I was working a bit too. But mainly lazy.

This is not one of those blogs where you get loads of personal stories. I prefer talking about food rather than myself – well, on the blog at least! But you’re about to get some chat about something that is close to my heart.

Wireless.

I love wireless internet. Sometimes I wonder what life was like before you could have the internet in your bedroom, in your toilet, in the kitchen, surfing before going to sleep and first thing in the morning. Sad, right? Well, everyone’s got their addictions.

Anyway, two weeks ago the wireless broke for reasons that are far too geeky for me to fully understand. I thought a bit of detox would be good but in the end what suffered the most was the blog.

You see, I’m sitting in the living room at the moment writing this. At the same time, I’m watching the football with a few friends and drinking a Belgian triple. This little insight into my evening might explain a lot about the quality of this blog but I quite like the multitasking, even if I’m quite bad at it!

Now that I’m reunited with my love, I thought I’d finally share a recipe with the world. It’s very simple and perfect for the summer. It’s best done using fresh raw prawns, with the shell on. What I do when I find them is to get rid of the shell on the body, leaving the head and the tail on; that way, peeling while eating is really easy and you also get all the lovely seafood flavours from the shells during cooking. Also, use fresh tomatoes if you have some big, red, juicy ones.

I’m sure there are many variations of this recipe, this is just the way I do it, having put together my favourite bits from recipes I used over the years.

Prawn Spaghetti with Feta Cheese

Ingredients (serves 2)

200 gr fresh big prawns
a splash of balsamic vinegar

1 onion, chopped
1 chilli (without the seeds if you don’t like it too spicy), finely chopped
1 green or red pepper, chopped
1 courgette, thinly sliced (optional)
1 cup of fresh tomatoes, skinned and processed until smooth (or finely chopped tomatoes)
a pinch of oregano
salt, pepper, olive oil

250 gr dried spaghetti
crumbled feta to serve

In a large frying pan, heat a splash of olive oil and fry the prawns until pink, turning half way. When cooked, add some balsamic vinegar and wait for a couple of minutes until it evaporates. Remove the prawns and set aside.

Using the same pan, fry the onions in a little olive oil until soft. Gradually add the chilli, the peppers and the courgettes and cook for 5-10 minutes. When the vegetables have softened, add the tomatoes and a bit of water, as well as the seasoning, and cook until the sauce has thickened and the courgettes are cooked through.

Boil some pasta and while that’s cooking, add the prawns back in the sauce for 5 minutes. Serve with some crumbled feta cheese on top.

Happy Easter!

There is something really quite magical about being back home, and it’s not just that the beach is 5 minutes away and the sun is almost always shining at this time of the year. Although it helps.

It’s that special feeling you get when you know a place inside out and every street brings back a different memory. Easter is a particularly good time of the year to be here too; I’m glad to have escaped the awful weather back in England and be able to smell all those lovely spring smells.

And Easter is still celebrated in a very traditional way. A week of fasting or at least moderate eating is followed by feasts right after midnight on Saturday. Eggs are dyed bright red and the egg wars are a favourite post-Sunday-lunch game.

There’s been a silly amount of meat-eating, not that I’m complaining of course! We got a whole spit roasted lamb and, since there’s just four of us, something tells me it’s going to take us a while to get through all of it. Even when the novelty wears out, there’s so many things you can do with it: use it in sauces, omelets, salads. Mum likes to eat it straight out of the fridge, Nigella-style.

I am not a huge fan of liver, but when it’s wrapped in intestines and then cooked on a rotisserie until crispy (kokoretsi) I can be tempted.

But apart from the meats, appetisers are also an important part of the Easter table. Salads, cheeses and dips go perfectly with the salty meat. One of my favourite ones is the one I’m about to share with you, and it’s so simple I’m not sure I’m even allowed to call this a recipe.

Roast Peppers

Ingredients
 
long peppers (as many as you like, including a spicy one for a bit of a kick)
olive oil
salt
red wine vinegar

Wash and prick the peppers with a knife. Dry them with a kitchen towel and place them on a baking tray. Sprinkle with olive oil and salt and shake the tray to cover them all over. Place under a medium grill until soft and brown in spots, turning round once to let them cook on both sides. Serve either hot or cold, with a splash of vinegar.