Easy summer menu with Mediterranean flavours – with a few ready made frozen items you can feed six people in around 30 minutes. This post was commissioned by Iceland for their #PowerofFrozen campaign.
Is it me or is everyone just crazy busy these days? I’ve reached the conclusion I work pretty much 7 days a week throughout term times to compensate for the interruption of school holidays and inevitable sick weeks.
A holiday would be nice, and we have one soon. Only the sheer franticness of getting things finished before signing off for a week followed by chaos upon returning makes me wonder sometimes whether it would be easier not to go at all.
So last weekend I took solace in a day that was way sunnier than forecast and revelled in how easy it was to pull of this al fresco lunch menu. We were feeding just three of us in these pictures but I was so impressed by the effortlessness of this summer menu, we are doing it all again tomorrow when we have guests. So I have adapted the timings/quantities I’m talking about for six people.
This is definitely a reason for mum going to Iceland – although tomorrow I think it will be a case of Dad sent to Iceland with a list.
Slow cooked lamb shanks in mint and rosemary gravy – ready from frozen in an astonishing twelve minutes in the microwave. And if you did as I did and defrost them first, they heat up even faster. (buy 3 packs to feed six)
Butternut squash, sweet potato, fig, red pepper and feta in a Middle Eastern inspired sauce – which I baked in the microwave combi oven in around 15 minutes. (buy 2 packs to feed six)
Couscous with Vegetables – which has all the veggies and some chick peas already in it so you just heat it up although I hacked it slightly as I’ll explain below. (buy 2 packs to feed six)
Seeded folded flat breads from the Luxury range – served dipped in hummus. (buy 2 packs if you want plenty for snacking with drinks before main meal)
I actually made my own hummus which I’ll blog separately but you could save time by subbing with Icelands:
Global Deli Be Inspired Olives, Feta and Tomatoes – shown here and
Iceland Red Pepper Houmus – shown here
Which we served with this Prosecco (just £6.79 a bottle) and Iceland’s new Luxury Raspberry & Prosecco Semifreddo frozen dessert.
So to hack this couscous then – not pictured but I fried some of Iceland’s super convenient ready chopped onions in olive oil underneath. Then you add the packs of frozen couscous mix and just keep stirring it until it defrosts. I also added a crushed vegetable Oxo cube.
On serving the couscous, I mixed it together with the roast vegetable mix. The Middle Eastern inspired sauce in the roast veg mix goes perfectly with the couscous.
Lovely toasted seeded pitta breads for scooping all that hummus. I added some fresh salad veg too.
And these are the miracle lamb shanks. Excuse my husband’s toes, he’s been castigated for bringing the tone down. These lamb shanks in rosemary and mint gravy come already cooked and you simply blast them in their pierced bag in the microwave for 12 minutes. This product is quite simply going to revolutionise my too-lazy-to-do-Sunday-Roast feeling forever.
Having already defrosted mine (due to the freezer being rammed with bargains) we were able to reheat 2 lamb shanks in around 7-8 minutes per pair. So if you were doing this dinner for six you’d need to allow 24 mins microwave time plus 15 minutes for the roast veg. Or you could bung the lot in a hot oven for around 30 minutes. Bingo.
The meat is SO tender. It fell of the bone and Ted who is normally fussy about red meats gobbled it all up with the tasty gravy.
And under the dappled sunlight we lazed away the afternoon with chilled Prosecco and a wedge of the raspberry semi freddo served with a few cheeky blueberries.
So picture me if you can, Prosecco in hand, ranting to the husband about everything that needed doing this week and then pausing to point at our lunch saying, “I am so doing this again.” And think of me with our guests tomorrow – they have four year old twin boys so the less attention required to cook the better!
For more meal solutions with quality and convenience in mind, here are a couple of other outdoors-y posts by my blogging friends also created to celebrate #PowerofFrozen with Iceland:
Are you looking for a quick and easy dinner to make after work? How about my chicken & chorizo paella (ish!) which can be made with no prep time and very little chopping! This is thanks to @icelandfoods and the #PowerOfFrozen! It has transformed my life, see how it can transform your life too! #ad #sponsored #foodbloguk #ukfoodblog #wmbloggers #buzzfeast #buzzfeedfood #yahoofood #feedfeed #f52grams #easycooking #quickmeal #quickandeasy #quickandeasymeals #linkintheprofile #linkinbio #fbcuk16
Chicken & Chorizo Paella by Jo’s Kitchen
The Power of Frozen on the BBQ with @icelandfoods Cornish Sardines with Wild Garlic Salsa Verde and Couscous Salad #bbq #poweroffrozen #icelandfoods #couscous #sardines #frozenfood #cornishsardines #barbecue #bbq #wildgarlic #wildfood #salsaverde #foragedfood #foraging #couscous #iceland
A photo posted by Claire Jessiman (@foodiequine) on
Barbecue Sardines with Wild Garlic Salsa by Foodie Quine
Best Ever Chunky BBQ Relish & a BBQ Meat Feast! #PowerofFrozen #sp @icelandfoods http://www.fabfood4all.co.uk/best-ever-chunky-bbq-relish-poweroffrozen/ #foodporn #foodie #foodblog #instafood #foodstagram #feedfeed #f52grams #yahoofood #buzzfeast #huffposttaste #foodbloguk #foodpics #homemade #foodbloguk #foodgawker #delicious #instayum #foodwinewomen #gloobyfood #nomnom #bonappetit #sortedfood #foodpornshare #eeeeeats #eat365
Chunky Barbecue Relish by Fab Food 4 All
And a few more easy recipes all using frozen foods from Iceland:
- Quick easy sweet chilli prawn stir fry by Eats Amazing
- Ultimate lazy veggie lasagne by Veg Space
- Sweet Potato Cakes by Veggie Desserts
- Ostrich red berry sauce pasta by Fuss Free Flavours
This easy summer menu post was commissioned by Iceland for their #PowerofFrozen campaign. For further info visit Iceland.co.uk
Camilla @FabFood4All says
Great menu Sarah!I love lamb shanks so great to know that Iceland do these and that they can be ready in such a short amount of time!
Jan Bennett says
So what I want to know is what happened to my invite?!!
Oh my goodness what a lovely meal you made there Sarah. I too love the Butternut and Sweet Potato and Feta side. Iceland definitely makes everything so easy.
Emma @ Supper in the Suburbs says
Oh boy you’re making me hungry. So impressed with the simplicity of it all yet it all look so delicious. particularly that Luxury Raspberry & Prosecco Semifreddo frozen dessert. I want that RIGHT NOW! Looks like I need to work out where my nearest Iceland is!
Sarah, Maison Cupcake says
I think my favourite thing is the mixing the roast veg with their frozen couscous. Unbelievably easy and noone would know you’d not made it yourself.
Kate | The Veg Space says
What a great meal – such good value and really simple to prepare. I seem to end up running around in the kitchen for far too long when guests arrive, rather than sticking to something really quick and tasty like this and enjoying their company instead!
Sarah, Maison Cupcake says
Same here – I am always rushing around in a panic. This weekend we did it all again with our guests and it was fantastic to bung it all in oven and just lay the table!!
Sus // roughmeasures.com says
I never think to go in Iceland, but this all looks fab! I really like the look of the squash dish (and that gorgeous semi-fredo!)
Helen @ family-friends-food.com says
Wow – that all looks amazing. I don’t eat meat but to be honest, I think you could omit the lamb and there would still be a whole delicious meal left!
I have got to get down to Iceland! It all looks and sounds delicious and so convenient. The semifreddo and Prosecco are also calling me!
Sarah, Maison Cupcake says
Mighty fine Prosecco!! And cheapest I’ve found in the UK at £6.79 a bottle.
Claire @foodiequine says
WHAT?! Iceland sell Prosecco? How did I not know that! Thanks for sharing my #PowerOfFrozen BBQ Recipe
Becca @ Amuse Your Bouche says
I love that frozen couscous, such a convenient thing to keep in the freezer (love the quinoa and lentil mixes too!). Great idea to add extra veggies!
Grace @ Eats Amazing says
That looks so yummy, can I come next time?! Loving the look of that cous-cous, will have to hunt it down!
This all looks so colourful and delicious, just need some sunshine to go with it. I’m impressed with the flatbreads. I shall look out for them next time I’m in Iceland.
Andrea @ The Petite Cook says
I’ve had that prosecco before and it’s really lovely, I had no idea Iceland also had the semifreddo.. it’s definitely calling my name!! And chapeau to this smart menu, looks pretty easy and quick to put together, and everything sounds super tasty!
Kerry at Kerry Cooks says
What a fab idea Sarah! I always think we have to make THE ABSOLUTE MOST of any nice weather and get out into the garden with friends, but people (me!) sometimes let lack of prep get in their way! The fact that you can keep most of this in your freezer is SO handy!
I also just bought those flatbreads, they look delicious! Going to have some tonight with hummus!
Kate @ VeggieDesserts says
What a fantastic spread. It’s amazing what you can do in such a short time using frozen food. Iceland is a bit of a gem!
Lucy Parissi says
You have given me so many ideas I need to pop into Iceland – if only to find the lamb shanks they do look insanely tasty! I have to say all the food I have gotten from the shop recently has been great quality and so reasonably priced
Helen @ Fuss Free Flavours says
I need to try those lamb shanks. As soon as there is room in the freezer I am stocking up!