Yesterday I went to my Dad's cousin's house for a big family lunch. There were 12 of us in total, and we had a lovely spread. It was a lovely lunch which went on into the afternoon and we didn't actually leave until 4pm! It was fantastic to see everyone and especially to meet my cousin from South Africa who I had never met before.
The main dishes were mushroom risotto and leek and blue cheese quiche, which were absolutely delicious, and then I made a couple of salads and some bread to go with it. The food in the picture is basically my handiwork for the day! I laid out the smoked salmon and helped with the green salad.
I made a multi bean and olive salad, it was supposed to be three bean but I ended up with loads of three bean salad mixes and mixed them altogether, using a recipe from epicurious. I also used olives stuffed with garlic instead of pimento as that's what I had in the cupboard and the flavours went really well together.
I also made a cherry tomato, mozzarella and basil salad with a balsamic and olive oil dressing. This was a real hit and there was only a tiny bit left at the end!
My last contribution was a loaf of courgette and cheddar picnic bread. This is made more like a cake than a bread, as there is no kneading or rising involved, but was really easy to make and came out lovely and moist. It went really well with a little bit of butter and a slice of smoked salmon. It also got rid of one more of my overgrown courgettes! I have just bought a book called What will I do with all those courgettes? by Elaine Borish,who my parents met on their recent holiday to Seattle, so hopefully that will give me some more ideas.
Courgette and Cheese Picnic Bread (adapted from Leith Baking Bible)
Makes 1 large loaf
225g/ 8oz self raising flour
pinch cayenne pepper
115g/4oz cheddar cheese
3 eggs, beaten
85g/3oz butter melted and cooled
55ml 2fl oz milk
225g / 8oz courgettes grated
Heat the oven to 180c , oil a 2lb loaf tin and line the base.
Sift the flour with the salt and cayenne into a large bowl. Stir in cheese. Make a well in centre add eggs butter and milk.
Mix in the courgettes to make a thick mixture. spoon into a loaf tin and spread flat. Bake for 45/50 mins or until a knife inserted into the centre comes out clean.