The Main Affair Recipe

Team Foodhall


Add some sunshine to your traditional fare with these healthy and flavoursome Mediterranean-inspired entrées. Baked Mushrooms and Sun-dried Tomatoes lend savoury depth to our recipe for Barley Risotto and get all the flavours of fall in our hearty Chickpea Tagine.


Serves 4

Preparation Time – 10-12 minutes


2 cups button mushrooms

1/2 cup Sun-dried Tomato
2 cups Pearl Barley – soaked overnight
2 tbsp Olive Oil
1 large Onion, chopped
1 tsp Garlic, minced
5 cups Vegetable Stock
3 tbsp Butter
1/2 cup Parmesan, grated
2 tsp Parsley, chopped
Handful of Arugula


1. Preheat oven to 180°C. Cut the mushrooms in half drizzle with oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss to coat. Arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet.

2. Bake until caramelised. Cool, dice and set aside.

3. In a heavy bottom pan, heat olive oil and add finely chopped onion & garlic and sauté, until soft.

4. Wash and add the soaked pearl barley and continue to stir.

5. Pour in 3 cups vegetable stock to cover the barley completely. Continue to cook, stirring often, until all the liquid is absorbed. Repeat and pour.

6. Add 1 cup stock at a time and stir, until the barley becomes al dente – tender but still very chewy, and most of the liquid has been absorbed. Add the roasted mushroom and diced sun-dried tomatoes to the risotto while cooking.

7. Adjust seasoning and mix well. Add 1 teaspoon of freshly chopped parsley. Stir in the grated Parmesan and soft butter to give the risotto a smooth and creamy finish.

8. Dress a handful of arugula in olive oil and seasoning and place on top of the risotto. Sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve piping hot.



Serves – 4
Preparation Time – 40-45 minutes


 1 medium-sized Pumpkin (250g) – peeled & cut into chunks

2 tsp ARQA Quatre Spices
3 tbsp Olive oil
2 tsp Garlic, minced
1 large Onion, diced
1 cup Chickpeas (soaked overnight) or 1 can Chickpeas
1 can crushed tomato
2 cups Vegetable stock
1 tsp Cumin Powder
1/4 tsp Cinnamon Powder or ARQA Tagine mix
2 tbsp Parsley, chopped
1 cup Tri coloured Quinoa, cooked
A handful of fresh Mint – chopped
Juice of 2 Lemons
Pine Nuts & Dried Cranberries for garnish
Salt & Black Pepper, as required


1. Peel the pumpkin and dice. Marinate with ARQA Quatre spices, salt and garlic and roast in preheated oven at 180°C for 15-20 minutes. Keep aside and cool.

2. Dice the onion and sauté in olive oil till soft and pink, add 1 teaspoon of chopped garlic and cook.

3. Add the chickpeas, crushed tomatoes and vegetable stock and simmer. Cook covered stirring occasionally.

4. While the stew is simmering add salt, cumin, cinnamon powder or 1 teaspoon ARQA Tagine mix. Mix well.

5. If using soaked chickpeas, simmer until tender. Add the roasted pumpkin and 1 teaspoon chopped parsley and adjust seasoning. Meanwhile add olive oil, lemon juice, freshly chopped mint, salt & black pepper to the tri-coloured cooked quinoa.

6. Mix well and check the seasoning to serve along with the tagine. Once the Tagine is cooked, garnish with 1 tablespoon each of pine nuts & dried cranberries. Sprinkle freshly chopped parsley and serve with the lemon-mint quinoa.    


Related Recipes

‘Tis the season… for strawberries!