Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Q is for Quick Vegetable Dishes

"Half our life is spent trying to find something to do with the time we have rushed through life trying to save." Will Rogers, 1930 in a Letter to the New York Times

Dr Edouard de Pomiane wrote a book, ‘La cuisine en dix minutes, ou l’Adaptation au rythme moderne’. This was translated into English as ‘Cooking in Ten Minutes or, Adapting to the Rhythm of Modern Life’. This was back in the 1930’s and in France. Who said that convenience food is a modern phenomenon? The difference is that Monsieur de Pomiane was teaching people how to cook real French food, quickly. In the time that it takes to remove the packaging, pierce a cellophane lid, microwave, stir and serve a ready-made meal to the family, we could be munching on Pig’s Ears in Egg and Breadcrumbs or rustling up Hare a la crème. And because our extensive search for Q vegetables drew a blank, here are some of attempts at slow food in a fast world; some of the quicker vegetable recipes that Freddie has enjoyed.At the bottom of the page is the recipe for our regular after school Formula One style quick turnaround Spinach Omelette and Freddie's breakfast favourite, Asparagus Dipped in Runny Egg. No time to cook? Well, with the help of some fellow bloggers we have some recipes designed to inspire the time-challenged amongst you.

1.Your first stop must be to click here and visit Ed Bruske who is the Slow Cook from Washington DC. He has created Quick Braised Swiss Chard with Pomegranate Molasses:his favourite way to prepare Swiss Chard. And if the Slow Cook is prepared to speed up to create something so delicious, what's stopping me? Thanks Ed!

2. Then please return to pay a visit to the The Expatriate Chef, where Beth is waiting for you with her super- quick Balsamic Glazed Carrots. Beth's blog is packed full of delicious recipes that you can create in minutes. Thanks Beth.

3. Celia is an artist from Cambridgeshire who resides at a beautifully verdant blog, Purple Podded Peas and who rather fittingly has cooked up in record time her speciality dish, Presto Pesto Pasta. Thank you Celia!

4. Amanda from Figs Olives Wine lives in New York, the city that according to the cliche, never sleeps. But nothing that Amanda creates ever looks rushed or frazzled. Her recipe for Wild Mushrooms with Sherry Shallots and Parsley takes well under 10 minutes to make. This is a dish where you will feel as you eat it, that time is standing still. Thank you Amanda....

In the next few days we will be bringing you more Quick Vegetable Dishes. What do you like to cook for your family in record time?

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TIME TAKEN - 4 minutes,25 seconds
FREDDIE'S SCORE - 9 out of 10
QUICK VEG SCORE - 9 out of 10

Serves 3-4
6 eggs
225g baby spinach leaves
Salt and ground pepper to season
1 tbsp butter for cooking spinach
2 tbsp butter for cooking omelette (use a cooking spray if you prefer a lower-fat option)

Break 5 of the eggs into a bowl. With the 6th egg, separate it. Add the yolk to the other eggs and mix them together gently with a fork. With the one egg white, whisk in a separate bowl until it forms soft peaks. Gently fold into th beaten eggs. Wash and thoroughly dry the spinach. In a pan, heat the butter and stir in the spinach leaves, allowing them to wilt for about a minute. Take off the heat. Season with salt and pepper.
Melt the butter in an omelette pan until it starts to foam. If the pan is too large the omelette will be too thin. If it is too small, the omelette will be too thick and tough to fold over.
Pour in the eggs and the spinach leaves. Stir them round with a fork. Tilt the pan so that the egg is evenly distributed. The eggs will start to set after 20 seconds. Redistribute any runny egg by tilting the pan round. With a fork trace round the edge of the omelette. When the egg is nearly set, fold the omelette in half in the pan using a spatula. Leave it to cook for nearly a minute. The remaining runny egg will set. Slide the omelette out of the pan and serve.

Have vegetables for breakfast. This is something so simple it hardly seems important enough to post, but asparagus dipped in a runny boiled egg was one of the first recipes that persauded Freddie not to be so scared of vegetables. It also takes just minutes to prepare. Steam the asparagus tips for 4 minutes. Boil an egg for about 3 minutes. And serve...

TIME TAKEN - 4 minutes,10 seconds

FREDDIE'S SCORE - 10 out of 10

QUICK VEG SCORE - 10 out of 10


  1. Anonymous1:25 AM


    ........here is my R recepie;
    take some radishes and slice them, thinly if yuo can but that does not matter. Then drench them i salt, i mean heaps and heaps, utnil they dissapear under the saltmountain, then WAIT atleast one hour, and then put them in a colinder and ring goood till all salt have dissapeard, and then you rince some more.

    If you dare, then pick up a sliver and taste ...........loooooovely!
    It's a side dish för japanese food ore to eat whit cream cheese, or just as a snack in front of the tv, heaps better than all that deep fried stuff.......

    The point is, this i a "Freddie make yourself" dish,


  2. Oh, that asparagus sounds yummy!

    I took my mum on a shopping trip to Newcastle on Monday and we had a lovely asparagus salad for lunch. It was asparagus with rocket leaves, a little celery and avocado, all dressed in a lovely french dressing.

  3. I love the egg holder/spout thingy, it's cute.

    Now may I have a spinach omelet, over easy with some feta? Yum!

  4. Asparagus dipped in egg is one of my all time favorites! Think I'll have it today - it's been way too long. I love this Q theme, but I'm skipping the pig ear for now! Thanks again Charlotte.

  5. The asparagus sounds divine. My favorite veggie dish is just taking some brussel sprouts, cut into quarters, then throw them in a skillet over medium heat with some olive oil. Let them sit and pop for about 5 minutes letting them brown a bit. Then salt, pepper, and cover in freshly grated parmasan cheese. DELISH!

  6. hey there, i had a similar problem too with my husband..he doesnt like vegetable at all..so its always been a big challenge for me in the kitchen to come up with recipes that will convince him to eat his veggies..will definitely share some of my veggie recipes for freddie :-)

  7. Oh, the asparagus for breakfast photo is fantastic, complete with pajamas. So cute!

    Both the asparagus and spinach omelette are winners! I love the blue china, too!

    Happy Holidays!

  8. I love the idea of asparagus dipped in eggs. I have guinea fowl eggs and soon quail eggs. I look forward to quail eggs and asparagus!
    Hope you and your family had a great Christmas and I look forward to reading and trying more of your recipes in 2008. Best Wishes
    Sara from farmingfriends

  9. I love the idea of asparagus dipped in eggs. I have guinea fowl eggs and soon quail eggs. I look forward to quail eggs and asparagus!
    Hope you and your family had a great Christmas and I look forward to reading and trying more of your recipes in 2008. Best Wishes
    Sara from farmingfriends


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