Celebrate Italian Food Day with two delicious Italian Dishes!

Monday 26 January 2015

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February 13th is Italian Food Day and you don't have to be an Italian Mama or in a fancy Italian Restaurant in order to experience some delicious Italian flavours!

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Italian food is known for its delicious garlic and chilli flavours and what better way to experience these than with the Very Lazy pre-prepared chopped ingredients. Cut out the hassle of chopping and spend more time enjoying the delicious dish. Bravissimo!

Here is a delicious dish for two which is perfect for any celebration!

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 *Pasta and Scallops with Rocket*
Serves 2

A delicious pasta dish incorporating scallops and rocket with a light and tasty garlic/lemon red chili sauce.  Fabulous. 

200g of linguine or spaghetti (8 ounces)
4 TBS extra virgin olive oil, plus a splash for frying
10 fresh shelled scallops
2 tsp Very Lazy Red Chilies
2 tsp Very Lazy Chopped Garlic
the zest and juice of one lemon
a handful of fresh rocket (baby arugula) 

Bring a lightly salted pot of water to the boil.  Add the pasta and cook according to package instructions.   While the pasta is cooking heat a non stick frying pan with a splash of oil and add the scallops.  Fry for one to two minutes until golden brown on one side and then turn and brown for a further one to two minutes on the other side.  Remove to a plate and keep warm.   Add the 4 TBS olive oil to the pan along with the chilies, garlic and lemon zest.  Gently warm through, then add the drained pasta, half of hte lemon juice and the rocket.  Season with some salt and black pepper.   Divide the pasta between two heated bowls.  Top with the scallops.  Squeeze over the remaining lemon juice and grind over some extra black pepper.

TIPS - 1 level tsp of Very Lazy Garlic  is equivalent to 1 large clove – and there are no smelly hands! Add to stews, stir-fries and salsas for an instant garlic hit…yum!

Risottos are very popular Italian dishes and not as difficult to execute as one would suppose. You do have to stay on point while they are cooking, but generally speaking they cook up rather quickly with delicious results!

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*Smoked Garlic and Butternut Squash Risotto*
Serves  to 6

25g of butter (2 TBS)
1 TBS olive oil
1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
3 tsp Very Lazy Smoked Garlic
1/2 medium sized butternut squash or small pumpkin, peeled, deseeded and cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 litre of hot vegetable or chicken stock (4 generous cups)
325g of risotto rice (1 1/2 cups)
150ml of dry white wine (10 TBS)
2 (100g rounds) goats cheese (2-(3 1/2 ounce) rounds)
125g of baby spinach (about 4 1/2 cups)
fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste 

Heat the butter and the oil together in a large saucepan until the butter melts.  Stir in the onion and garlic and cook for two to three minutes, without browning, until the onion has softened.   Stir in the butternut squash and cook for a further three to four minutes, until starting to brown.   Add 4 TBs of the stock, cover the pan and then allow to sweat over low heat for five minutes.   Add the rice and cook for a further couple of minutes, then pour in the wine.  Cook for two to three minutes until absorbed.   Stir in the stock 125ml (1/2 cup) at a time, stirring constantly, until most of the liquid had been absorbed.   Roughly chop one of the cheese rounds and then slice the other into four even slices.   Stir the chopped cheese into the risotto and season well with salt and pepper.   Add more liquid if need be.   The risotto is ready when the vegetables and rice grains are tender.  Remove from the heat and stir in the spinach. Cover and allow it to wilt with the heat from the risotto.   Serve immediately in bowls, topped each with a round of cheese, freshly ground black pepper and a drizzle of olive oil.

Very Lazy Chopped Garlic (200g) is available from selected Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury’s and Morrisons stores nationwide, RRP £1.47

Very Lazy Smoked Chopped Garlic (185g) is available from selected Tesco stores nationwide, RRP £1.80

Very Lazy Chopped Red Chillies (190g) is available from selected Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury’s and Morrisons stores nationwide, RRP £1.47


  1. They do make things a bit easier MOnique!

  2. I love italian food Marie and this past look delicious!!!

  3. Oh my!!! I want these dishes right now.........please! :-D Looks so good! xoxo

  4. They do look really good Valerie!! I wish I wasn't allergic to seafood! xx

  5. This is really great information. I have visited so many blogs however, I found the most relevant info here. I have subscribed to your blog, keep continue posting information here.


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