It's National Vegetarian Week This week is National Vegetarian Week. Whilst I often use meat in my cooking, there are many vegetarian recipes that I enjoy equally. As it turns out, this week I encountered a mental challenge when eating the following delicious and incredibly flavoursome vegetarian recipe from Gino D’Acampo. Bruschette with Roast Pepper and Cannellini Puree and Black Olive Relish Ingredients 8 tablespoons extra Virgin Oil 1 small onion, chopped 1 teaspoon smoked paprika 400g tinned cannellini beans 2 roasted peppers (from a jar) 50g pitted Kalamata olives, chopped 3 tablespoons chopped parsley 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice 1 baguette cut into thick slices 40g Rocket Leaves Salt and pepper to taste Method Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a medium saucepan and fry the onions for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the smoked paprika and cook for 2 more minutes. Place the onion mixture, beans, roasted peppers and 2 more tablespoons of the olive oil into a food processer and blend until smooth. Season and allow to cool slightly. To make the black olive relish place the olives and parsley in a bowl, pour over the remaining olive oil and lemon juice. Season and stir well. Place the bread slices on a hot griddle pan and cook for 2 minutes each side until lightly charred. To serve spread some of the cannellini and roast pepper puree over each warm bruschetta and spoon on a little of the olive relish. Top with a few rocket leaves and drizzle with a touch more olive oil. Of course, I make a few tweaks to ensure the dish was suitable for myself as an oesophageal cancer sufferer. Although I used peppers as to the recipe from a jar, next time I would roast a couple in the oven and skin them. Although, in the end, it didn’t cause any problems with the eating of the dish, I like to avoid anything with skin when at all possible. Secondly I chopped the rocket really fine as leaf also can present a problem. Thirdly I used a baguette cut diagonally, I decreased the thickness of slices to 10 mm and fried them in olive oil which I find helps food past the obstruction. My mental challenge came from the jarred peppers. I just put up a barrier which I believe ensured that I blocked up. As I said, the peppers were as to recipe, from a jar and blitzed. I tried the purée prior to constructing the bruschette but I’d already talked myself into the fact that there were skins in the blitzed purée and therefore it would be a problem, hence first mouthful blocked. This is something I have come up against previously. So…I got unblocked, told myself I can eat the Bruchette, which we have talked about in the post about bread. I went on to successfully eat the dish and even made a second batch which I thoroughly enjoyed. It just goes to show that we can be self-destructive from within our own minds. We must tell ourselves that we have tweaked a recipe so as it works, which I find means the chances are high that it will work. It’s never going to be easy, however I feel that I’m doing quite well. I have to say, whilst a terminal diagnosis of oesophageal cancer could be viewed with a negative attitude, I’ve to date found this journey most interesting. Life is what you make it and I am making it everything that I possibly can.