Easy entertaining this spring

Easy entertaining this spring

Three great dishes to share with family and friends. Plus an easy-peasy spring makeover and how Flash and Fairy can help you make light work of the cleaning.

The clocks have gone forward, the sun is out (sometimes!) and there are not one but two bank holidays coming up, so what better time of year to get your nearest and dearest around the table?

To get you in the mood, how about giving your kitchen (or dining room if you have one) a spring makeover? We’re not talking anything expensive or time-consuming here. Just a quick clean and a few easy touches that’ll make a big difference.

When it comes to the food you want easy crowd-pleasers that’ll leave you plenty of time to relax and enjoy your family and friends, so we’ve looked to street food for inspiration with three delicious recipes.

Want to make light work of the washing up? We’ve got that covered too.

The kitchen makeover

The first step to any makeover is making sure that everything is sparkling clean. Arm yourself with some Flash Multi Surface Cleaner and you’ll get the job done in no time. The concentrated formula can be used on pretty much any surface you can think of so there’s no messing about with lots of different products.

Once everything is looking clean and fresh, why not add a few spring touches? One of the quickest and easiest ways to do this is with textiles – perhaps you could switch your heavy curtains to something lighter, or just treat yourself to some colourful new napkins and tablecloths.

Spring flowers are immensely cheering to have around. A big jug of daffs or pot of hyacinths doesn’t cost a fortune but is such a treat for the senses. Bowls of brightly coloured fruit look wonderful too, and there’s the added bonus that they provide an easy-to-access healthy snack.

Finally, don’t forget the power of green! Studies have shown that it’s a colour with mood-lifting qualities so whether you choose it for your new napkins or just make sure you have lots of pots of fresh herbs around, it’s always good to go green.

Three great spring recipes

These recipes, inspired by the world’s street food, are quick and simple to prepare, great for sharing and of course delicious. We’ve given you quantities to serve four but the recipes can easily be scaled up if you’re feeding a crowd.

Beef satay with peanut sauce

Satay is perennially popular and this recipe works just as well with chicken or prawns if you fancy ringing the changes.

Take 700g of rump steak and cut into bite-sized cubes. Make a marinade by combining ¼ cup of soy sauce, 1 tablespoon minced ginger, 1 teaspoon sugar, 2 teaspoons of sesame oil, 3 cloves of minced garlic, ½ cup of finely diced onion, 1 teaspoon of lime juice, salt and pepper and a little red chilli sauce. Marinate the meat for at least 1 hour and up to 8.

Meanwhile, make a dipping sauce by whisking together 1 tablespoon of minced ginger, 2 cloves of minced garlic, 1 cup of peanut butter, ½ cup of unsweetened coconut milk, 2 tablespoons of soy sauce, 1 teaspoon of cumin and the juice of a lime. Top this with a little chopped coriander and a few crushed peanuts. Thread the beef onto skewers and grill on a high heat or about 1-3 minutes a side or until cooked to your liking.

 

Chicken Shawarma

This Middle Eastern-inspired dish makes for a supper that’s as quick as it is tasty.

Cut 4 chicken breasts into strips and coat with a tablespoon of oil, 1 minced clove of garlic, 1 teaspoon of curry powder, ½ teaspoon of cinnamon, ¼ teaspoon of nutmeg and some salt and pepper. Fry the strips in batches.

Meanwhile, make a sauce by combining 1 cup of diced cucumber (peeled with seeds removed), ½ cup of plain yogurt, 2 tablespoons of tahini, 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, 1 clove of minced garlic and some salt and pepper.

Serve the chicken with warmed pittas, shredded lettuce, a tomato and mint salad and some lemon wedges.

 

Mexican fish tacos

You tend to think of tacos as a meat-based dish but this makes a lovely light alternative.

Start by making a salsa. You need ¾ of a cup of diced pineapple or mango (or a combination of both), a diced tomato, a finely sliced spring onion, the juice of a lime and salt and pepper.

Now make a simple sauce by taking 3 tablespoons of chopped coriander and mixing with 3 tablespoons of sour cream, the juice of a lime and salt and pepper.

Coat 4 firm fish fillets (pollock and salmon are good) with a tablespoon of cumin, the juice of a lime and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Grill the fish until cooked to your liking.

Meanwhile, warm through 4 tortillas.

Serve the fish and tortillas with guacamole, grated cheddar, and the salsa and sauce.

 

Make light work of the clearing up

Fairy Washing Up Liquid and Fairy Platinum Dishwasher Tablets take the bore out of the chore when it comes to the washing up.

What are your tips for relaxed spring entertaining?

Let us know in the comments section below.

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