Proper Food Meets The Honest Project
There is a great buzz around Frances Walsh of the Honest Project. For once, I’m standing by the hype.
Frances’ work on the Honest Project is simply superb. Her recipes are mainly plant based and she has managed to make me want to forego meat on more that one occasion. If you know how I like my meat, you will understand how appetising her recipes must be. Her Vegan Banana & Chocolate Ice Cream is now a firm favourite in my house. You can read a bit more about Frances here.
You can read more of Frances’ recipes over here.
Frances, how did you come to cooking?
I started the blog in Spring 2015 as a challenge for myself. I had previously worked as a solicitor but left that job after becoming ill with cancer. As I finished my treatment and started the road to recovery, I needed a new challenge and setting up the blog was a project I could get stuck into. The blog just grew from there. The Honest Project isn’t a particular type of website. At the moment, it’s really all about the food I prepare and eat on an everyday basis. I’m hoping to expand it’s focus and start to blog about other things that are important to me and also to involve other people so that there is more of a community feel to the blog.
And what are you going to cook for us?
Most of the recipes on The Honest Project blog are plant based even though I am not a vegan. I just find this type of food suits me. For today’s recipe, I wanted to share with you one of my favourite dishes at the moment. It’s for a grilled courgette and artichoke lentil salad that is made from 100% plant based ingredients. It’s perfect for summer lunches or suppers and is quite balanced nutrition wise, so can easily be a meal in itself.
The Honest Project’s Courgette, Artichoke & Lentil salad
- 2 courgettes, ends trimmed, cut into long thin strips
- 200g artichokes hearts in olive oil, drained
- ½ cup green lentils, rinsed
- 1 cup vegetables stock
- 2 large handfuls rocket leaves, washed and dried
- Zest of a lime
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- Pinch of sea salt
For the dressing:
- 1 tbsp milled hemp seeds
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 4 tbsp water
- ½ red chilli
- Zest of a lime
- Juice of 2 limes
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ red chilli, finely chopped
- Handful of coriander, chopped
- Put the lentils and vegetable stock in a saucepan. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes until the water has evaporated and the lentils are tender. Once cooked, drain fully and set to one side.
- Toss the courgettes in a bowl with a tablespoon of olive oil, lime zest and sea salt. Heat a griddle pan until very hot. Grill the courgettes in batches, about five minutes per side. Don’t overcrowd the pan. Drain on kitchen paper as you finish cooking each batch and set to one side.
- Next, grill the artichokes on the griddle pan, about five minutes each side. Drain on kitchen paper and set to one side.
- Prepare the dressing by putting all the ingredients in a mini food processor or blender. Blend well. If you don’t have a blender or food processor, chop the red chilli very finely and add it and the other ingredients to a bowl and whisk well.
- Add half the dressing to the lentils and stir well to ensure the lentils are coated with the dressing.
- Assemble the salad by placing the rocket leaves in the base of your serving dish. Spoon the lentils over the rocket leaves. Place the grilled courgette and artichoke on top. Top the salad with a sprinkling of chopped red chilli and coriander leaves. Serve the remaining dressing in a bowl on the side.