The American classic. This is for two people as a main course, easy to scale up or down. It can also be served as a side like in American diners.
- 10g butter or substitute
- 1 clove garlic, crushed and chopped
Heat the butter in a flameproof pan (like a le Creuset casserole dish and gently fry the garlic
Add to the pad and wilt
- 400ml milk
- 200ml pale ale
- 170g macaroni, penne or curly pasta
Add to the pan, bring to the boil and simmer 20 minutes
- 150g mozzerella cheese sliced
- 100g cheddar cheese grated
- 1 tsp cornflour in a little milk
Add to the pan and stir to thicken. Keep heating gently to melt the cheese. Place under a grill to brown the top if you like. Serve with crispy bacon!
Very quick and tasty. For two people:
- 170gm pasta of your choice
Get it boiling according to the packet instructions. Meanwhile…
- dash of olive oil
- Half a chilli deseeded and sliced
- 1 garlic clove sliced
Add to a frying pan and saute gently for 3 minutes.
- 100g chorizo, sliced (or bacon, or salami)
- half tsp fennel seeds
Add to the pan, fry for one minute
- 150gm cherry tomatoes, halved
Add to the pan, cover and simmer for 8 minutes. Keep an eye on the liquid, if it dries out add a splash of water.
Add to the pan, fry until pink (about two minutes)
- Juice of half a lemon
- Chopped parseley
Add to the pan, stir in. Adjust any seasoning. The pasta should be done by now. Drain the pasta, stir into the sauce and serve.
Great for Christmas leftovers. Serves 2. You can play with the quantities, this is just a guide.
- 170g pasta (spaghetti is good)
Boil according to the pack instructions. Meanwhile…
- 2 eggs
- 100ml cream
- 25g-50g parmesan cheese grated
Beat to a creamy sauce. When the pasta is cooked, drain, add the creamy sauce are return to a gently heat. Stir until the sauce thickens
- 150g smoked salmon bits
- 1 tbs parsley, chopped
Stir into your sauce. Adjust seasoning and serve.
A lighter take on the meatballs classic, perfect for summer. Serves 2:
Peel the outer into ribbons, grate the centre. Put to one side
- One onion finely chopped
- Olive oil
Fry gently until soft. Add
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 tsp fennel seeds
Fry 2 minutes more. Tip into a bowl, add
- 250g pork mince
- Grated courgetter
- salt and pepper
- Chopped parsely
Mix and form into 10-12 balls. Add to the pan, with a bit more oil if required, and fry until cooked. Meanwhile, cook
- 200g spaghetti until just al dente
Scoop the pasta into the meatball pan. Add a splash of cooking water and the courgette ribbons. Heat gently and stir around to coat the pasta with the pan juices. Add more water if needed. Serve sprinkled with
- zest and juice of half a lemon
- grated parmesan
- chopped parsley
In my opinion as a meat-eater, this is very nearly as good as the beef version! This makes a batch good for 4 meals at least.
- 400g dried green lentils
- I onion, chopped finely
- 2 carrots, chopped finely
- 2 celery sticks, chopped finely
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 litres vegetable stock
- Tin of chopped tomatoes
- Salt and pepper
First cook the lentils in the stock for 45 minutes. Add more water if it threatens to dry out.
Meanwhile chop the vegetables or if you have one, pulse in a food processor. You need to consistency fine not chunky. Now sweat in a pan with the oil until soft. Add the tinned tomatoes, cooked lentils with their liquid and season. Cook another 20-30 minutes. Now for the clever bit. Use a stick blender or fork to mush half the mix into a paste and stir into the rest of the mix to make a thick gloopy sauce. If it is too dry add stock, if it is too runny, boil it away a bit with the lid off. Real vegans will add yeast powder to the mix.
Serve as a pasta sauce, or make a lasagne. The problem with a vegan lasagne is making the creamy topping. Vegetarians will be fine with a standard bechamel sauce and grated cheese! Vegans will have to improvise with tofu alternatives. Keep some back to use as an ingredient for vegan sausage rolls!
Super quick pasta dish. I like any pasta sauce that cooks in less time that the pasta! For two (easily scales up):
- 2 skinless boneless salmon portions
- 4 sun dried tomatoes, sliced, and their oil
- 175g pasta of your choice (I like shells for seafood)
- 1/2 pack of fresh spinach
- A blob of creme fraiche (optional)
Here’s what to do. Boil the pasta according to the instructions. Meanwhile, heat the tomato oil in a pan and cook the salmon and tomatoes until the salmon looks cooked and flakes easily. Add the spinach and put a lid on the pan for a couple of minutes until the spinach is wilted. At this point you can add the creme fraiche if you like, or just stir about to mix, and adjust the seasoning. Mingle with the pasta and serve.
A bit fusion but it works. Takes about 5 minutes. The photo above was taken in Thailand where we went to cookery school for a day. First we were sent on a shopping trip to buy authentic ingredients in the market! This recipe did not come from that school but I thought the photo was appropriate for the ingredients anyway.
- 4 slabs of dried egg noodles
- 400g raw prawns
- 1 bunch of basil
- 1 bunch of fresh coriander
- 75g peanuts
- 1 red chilli
- 1 lime – zest and juice
- 2 tbs sesame oil
- 1 tbs olive oil.
Cook the noodles. Stir-fry the prawns in the olive oil. Blitz everything else except the sesame oil in a blender. Drain the noodles, stir in the sesame oil, stir in the prawns and pesto and eat.
Without having to buy pesto! Quantities here for four – this scales up or down easily.
- 50g blanched almonds
- 1 clove of garlic
- 50g parsley leaves
- 1 grated lemon zest
- 2 tbs lemon juice
- 80ml good olive oil
- 350g spaghetti
- 300g cooked prawns
Dry fry the almonds. Zap all but spag and prawns in a blender. Add 2 tbs water to loosen it if necessary
Cook the spaghetti. Drain, add the prawns to warm though. Add the pesto. Done! I have not made this for a while but the recipe in the book has a smiley face and Oli next to it so I will have to make it again soon.