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Chargrilled courgette and purple sprouting broccoli with basil oil dressing and feta

The day before yesterday was my hen do. We did a 7 mile hike in the amazing Lancashire countryside in the daytime, then drinking and dinner at night. Sounds fairly sensible and sedate doesn’t it? It wasn’t. I still feel rough today. Why does it take you two days to get over a heavy night when you get older? Seriously, does anyone know? Ah, it was worth it though. Very amusing shenanigans were had. I’ve just watched possibly the funniest video I have EVER seen. It’s the hens (8 of us: my mum, Adam’s mum, sister in law, 4 best friends from school and university) dancing to Beyonce’s Crazy in Love at around 1am back at the B&B, and the poor B&B owner bursting in, very angrily, on our frolics to tell us off “some people have booked in to have a quiet night!”. If you’re friends with me on Facebook I posted it on there. Bless the poor man. I would like to apologise, here on the blog, publicly, to him and the other guests who were staying that night. Sorry. We aren’t normally anti social drunks, honestly!

Getting told off and feeling rough aside though… it was properly amazing. So much fun. So many giggles. It was just over too quick. Thanks ladies… and sorry again to the B&B owner!

So this is very much a guilty, I-need-vegetables-to-cleanse-me Monday dish. I fridge raided, not setting out to make something for the blog, and it just worked out. We had a load of basil that we needed to use; it’s been growing like crazy in this hot weather, so I made a basil oil dressing which is a first for me. I griddled the veg, but you could barbie them to the same effect. It’s very good cold, or tepid anyway. Even though it takes ages to griddle the veggies, you could do this in advance. It’s not hard work as such, just takes a while. You could sip at a glass of wine. Or water in my case. No more wine for me! Not for at least a week anyway…

Makes enough for 2 people as a main, or 4 as a side:
200g purple sprouting broccoli
2 courgettes, sliced thinly lengthways

For the basil dressing:
Large bunch of basil
About 4/5 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Generous pinch of salt
3 cloves garlic, minced into a paste

To serve:
About 50-100g feta cheese, crumbled
Zest of half a lemon

  • Preheat your griddle pan so it’s smoking hot. 
  • Thinly slice your courgettes, brush them with oil and griddle, for about 5-10 minutes each side. How long it will take will depend on how thin you cut them. Keep an eye on them, you don’t want them to burn, but they should be nicely charred. 
  • Your broccoli will take longer to chargrill. Lower the heat of the pan to medium. Brush them with oil too, then grill for about 10-15 minutes. You may have to do several pan’s worth as I did (my griddle pan is very small). I put a heavy lid over the pan to weight it down and speed up cooking (and to steam them a bit too).
  • Once your vegetables are chargrilled, make your dressing. Blitz your basil, olive oil, minced garlic (I did mine first in a pestle and mortar). Then add the lemon juice and salt, taste and adjust if required. 
  • Pour the dressing over the vegetables (you probably won’t need it all, though it should be generously dressed), toss and serve. Crumble feta over and zest your lemon over too.


  1. July 16, 2013 / 5:49 pm

    Your night out sounds hilarious – envious of your hike. Must look out for PSB – love it and don't get it in Dubai.
    Oh and the key to not getting a hangover – practise!

  2. July 19, 2013 / 8:23 pm

    Hi Sally – you could do this with asparagus too, that would be amazing. : )

  3. Paula Horsfall
    September 3, 2018 / 1:11 pm

    do you sever warm or cold

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