Sweet summery strawberries play against the tangy, metallic feta and the creamy avocado to make a delicious salad that’s ripe for any summer picnic or lunch table. Dressed with a rich strawberry and balsamic dressing, this vegetarian strawberry avocado salad is a beautifully fresh, easy to make dish that’s a perfect starter, side dish or salad.

Strawberry Avocado Salad

Gavin Wren Recipes, Salads, Side dishes, Vegetarian

This week I’ve created a visually arresting, sure-fire summer streaker, strawberry avocado salad, which will whip it’s clothes off and run across your table whenever you desire. Summer, Summer, Summertime. It’s summer. It really is summer. The last few weeks have been spent basking (to be more precise, working) in the high twenties, a level of warmth that had barely graced my skin this year. It took until the third week of August before the weather finally climbed out of bed, yawned and said, “so, what season is it?”. This summery-ness inspired an insatiable urge to create something tantalisingly summery. I wanted a recipe that felt fresh and bright, something which climbed up to the top floor, took it’s clothes off and ran around screaming “I”M SUMMER!”. Strawberry avocado came in a vision, seeming to be the golden ticket. Strawberries were first on the list, because making a salad with…
Courgette, spinach and feta bundles

Spinach and feta courgette bundles

Gavin Wren Recipes, Side dishes, Small Bites, Starters, Vegetarian

On today’s special weekend episode of ‘le petit oeuf’ I’ve got some utterly fantastic courgette parcels for you, small bundles of joy stuffed with earthy spinach, pine nuts, sweet golden raisins and oozing feta cheese. They might look tricky to make, but these little bundles of joy are incredibly straightforward and deliver a really high level ‘wow’ factor to the table. I like to think of them as individual, savoury, gluten free vegetable pies, crafted from pure courgette. There’s no pastry, therefore no gluten and depending on you and your friend’s diets, that can be a huge bonus. It’s a recipe that would be a sure-fire hit regardless of whether your diners are vegetarian or not, it’s got a bundle of great flavours that combine beautifully and a delicate presence that inspires a hint of reverence when presented. They’re also incredibly rewarding to make, because they look so good when…
baked honey feta dipping pots

Baked honey feta dipping pots

Gavin Wren Recipes, Small Bites, Spreads & Dips, Starters

Beautiful, charming simplicity. There’s a lot to be said for it. Some of the worlds greatest and most prolific inventions are also the most simple, like the spectacularly simple paperclip, coat hanger or hula hoop. Apple products are also noted for their simplicity of approach and elegance of operation, hence their incredible commercial success. But behind that simplicity is a lot of careful thought and work, as Albert Einstein said “Any fool can make something more complicated”, however simplicity is where the genius lies. This is a great concept to carry into the kitchen with you, especially if you’re trying to devise some recipes, so that you err on the side of simplicity. I’ve always had a tendency to add extra flavours to try and resolve the taste of a dish, but that isn’t where the really good home cooking recipes come from, because simple, tasty, balanced dishes will always…
Sun-dried tomato and rosemary polenta

Sun-dried tomato and rosemary polenta

Gavin Wren Main Dishes, Recipes, Vegetarian

I had no idea what to call these polenta shapes. Burgers? Nope. Patties? That’s just a burger, isn’t it? Frisbees? Pucks? So I gave up and just went with good old, simple ‘polenta’ on it’s own, which, after all, is exactly what this is. And given the vagaries of trying to lure polenta into your desired shape, it might be best not to assign any shape-based nouns to this dish, as there’s a good chance you’ll end up making polenta splats, polenta balls or polenta mounds. Polenta is peculiar stuff. It fills a void in my perception of food that exists somewhere between pasta and bread. It’s yet another thing which I hadn’t eaten much in the first 35 years of my life and only recently started to experiment with it. My main beef with it is the texture, so I wanted to try and get a little bit of…
Paprika sweet potato wedges with feta mint yoghurt

Paprika sweet potato wedges with minted feta yoghurt

Gavin Wren Main Dishes, Recipes, Side dishes, Spreads & Dips, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Back at the wheel. I’m back! Although you probably hadn’t noticed, I’ve been away for a little while. Not away ‘away’, but away from the blog. And what’s the event that has caused me to temporarily desert (mmmm, dessert) my beloved blog? Surely it must be something awful, heartrendingly terrible or existentially disastrous to pry my frantic fingertips from the surface of my keyboard? The good news is that nothing bad has happened. It was the arrival of a little creature, an 8 week old miniature poodle puppy who we called Bernard, that managed to get the better of me psychologically for a few weeks. That left little space up there to consider food, blogs or for that matter, anything else at all (apologies to my girlfriend). Just in case you’re interested, here’s the little bundle of joy in all his mischievous glory: I’d like to add a little footnote,…
Guardian Cook cover, your spreads

Guardian Cook Feature – Recipe of the Week!

Gavin Wren Food Blogging, Writing

I can’t help but feel a little bit proud of myself. My Feta, rosemary and hazelnut crunch spread, which I entered into the Guardian Cook supplement’s recipe swap was crowned recipe of the week! As well as being published in the print version of the paper, it was also published online here, at the Guardian Readers’ recipe swap page. “…recipe of the week goes to Lepetitoeuf for their feta, hazelnut and rosemary crunch; it’s sweet, savoury, and unbelievably moreish. Spread it on crackers, or sourdough, or forego the vehicle and just tuck in with a spoon.”
Eve O’Sullivan
I must admit that I feel giddy with excitement, and am slightly unsure how to deal with this newfound high level exposure; whether I need a publicist, PR representative, biographer etc now. Of course I won’t let the success effect me, I’ll be the same old Gavin. So if you want to…