Category Archives: Recipes

Vegan Chilli con carne


Chilli con carne served with barley

Chilli con carne served with barley

Ingredients for 4 portions:

  • 200g Barley
  • 2 kidney beans tin
  • 100g mince soya meat
  • 1 tinned tomato
  • 50g leek
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 scotch bonnet (chilli pepper)
  • 1 teaspoon of Paprika powder, coriander powder & cumin powder
  • 3 garlic cloves

Method:

Dehydrated Soya mince
Dehydrated Soya mince

Start by soaking the soya mince in boiled water for 10 minutes. When rehydrated, the mince will double in volume. Drain, squeeze out the water and set aside. Also put the barley to soak in cold water for 20 – 30 minutes.

Blended condiments, hydrated soya, kidney beans
Blended condiments, hydrated soya, kidney beans

Chop and blend 1/4 onion with the tomato, leek, the chilli pepper and garlic cloves. Set aside.

Finely chop the rest of onion and fry it in a sauce pan with 3 table spoons of oil. Once the onion is browned, add the now rehydrated soya mince and with salt and black pepper. Stir fry for 3 minutes until the mince takes a bit of colour. Now add the blended ingredients and stir well with a spatula, then cover for 10 minutes.

Remember to stir from time to time to avoid burns. All you should hear by this time is frying noises from the pan. This means it is the time to add the kidney beans with the coriander, paprika and cumin. Stir, then pour in 400ml of water. Cover the pan and leave it to simmer for 20 minutes.

In the meantime, rinse the barley and place it on the hob with 250ml of water, 1 table spoon of oil and salt.Living the pot uncovered on high heat, allow the water to evaporate for 20 minutes. Once the water has evaporated, fluff the barley and add another 10ml of water, then cover. This time, cook on low heat for 10 minutes to complete the cooking process with steam only. By this time the chilli corn should be ready.  Serve and enjoy.

Serving suggestion
Serving suggestion

Barley is a good alternative for those who do not like rice, cooking it without soaking beforehand can take up to 80 minutes, it is therefore best to soak it before hand to save on energy.

Closed pie with pear and dark chocolate


Light, fluffy, not too sweet pear pie

Ingredients for 5 portions:

  • 100g Dark chocolate
  • Tin pear
  • 100g almond powder
  • 100g sugar
  • 1 lemon zest
  • 10ml corn or any vegetable oil
  • 1 Jus-Rol puff pastry sheet

Method:

Preheat the oven at 180C.

Drain the halved pears and cut them in 2 making each piece a quarter. Dry every quarter with paper towel and set them aside.

Dry the pear quarters

Mix the almond powder, lemon zest and sugar, together and set the mix aside.

Now prepare the chocolate sauce in the same way as for the sponge and orange sandwich (search the blog).

Spray some vegetable oil on the oven baking tray and lay the puff pastry flat on it.

Pears diped in chocolate

Cover the pear quarters in chocolate and gently place them length ways on the pastry sheet.

Now, cover the pears with the almond, zest and sugar mix like on the third photo on the top.  All you have to do now is just fold the pastry over the pears to create an envelope.

With a knife or fork score the edges of the pastry to seal the envelop. Using a baking brush, gently brush the top of the pie with some vegetable oil before placing it in the oven for 40 minutes at 180C.

Once the pie is ready, let it cool down for at least 10 minutes before serving. The dark chocolate can be very bitter for children, so, serve it to them with an ice cream or a fruit sauce. Enjoy!

.....mmmmm....
…..mmmmm….

Spaghetti & meatballs


Spaghetti & meatballs
Spaghetti & meatballs

Ingredients for 5 portions:

Ingredients for the dish
Ingredients for the dish
  • 500g spaghetti
  • 400g mince beef
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 3 spring onions
  • 1 stock cube
  • 1 big onion
  • Salt & pepper
  • 1 tinned tomato & ketchup
  • Vegetable oil

Method:

Cut the onion in two, grate one half and finely chop the other half. Keep both separate. Chop the spring onions and set aside.

Preparing the meatballs 1
Preparing the meatballs 1

To make the meatballs, put the mincemeat in a mixing bowl. Using a garlic press, mash the garlic into the mince, add the grated onion, salt and black pepper. Also add 2 tablespoons of oil to the mix then, using your hands, massage together all the elements and form the meatballs.

Preparing the meatballs 2
Preparing the meatballs 2
Prep done
Prep done

Put the balls in a sauce pan, cover and place on high heat for 5 minutes. This will extract the water from the meat and when there is no more liquid coming out of it, the meat will start to fry and brown in its own fat. Just make sure that it browns on all sides.

Once this is done, remove the meat from the pan and set aside to rest.

Without rinsing the sauce pan, fry the chopped onions in the meat residues. Brown for 2 – 3 minutes, add the spring onions and the tomato. Season with salt and pepper, then, cover for 10 minutes the time for the juice from the tomato to evaporate.

Now, put the meat balls back in the sauce with a tablespoon of ketchup and 100ml water, then cover for another 10 minutes.

In the meantime, cook the spaghetti according to the instructions on the package.

Spaghetti & meatballs ready
Spaghetti & meatballs ready

Serve as suggested and enjoy.

Potato rosti and beetroots


Ingredients for 2 portions:

  • 200g sweet corn
  • 2 medium precooked beetroots
  • 100g leek and 50g celery (optional)
  • 1 big potato or 2 medium ones
  • 1 small onion
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Garlic granules & Ginger powder
  • Dry thyme
  • Sunflower oil

Method:

Peel the beetroot and cut it into small pieces, cut the leek and onion in the same size, set aside separately. Drain and rinse the sweetcorn, set aside. Peel and grate the potato length ways to obtain the longest possible “straws”.

Grated potato
Grated potato

Squeeze out the extra water coming out of the potato, lightly dust with salt and pepper mix well, set aside. You will need a frying pan and a wok to cook this meal.  A large sauce pan could be used instead of the wok.

In the wok, heat 2 tablespoons of oil, and brown the chopped onions with a pinch or two of thyme. This should take about two minutes. Now, add the leek and celery then stir for 3 minutes. Time to add the beetroot, corn, a bit of garlic granules, a bit of ginger and salt. Stir all to mix well. Adjust seasoning. Now add 3 to 4 tablespoons of water then, stir continuously for 4 to 5 minutes the time for the water to dry out and for the beetroots to absorb the other ingredients. Once this part is done, remove the wok from the hob, cover and leave aside.

Now onto the potatoes rostis, also called “pomme pallaisson” in French. These are simply small potatoes pancakes and with a big baking potato for example, you can easily obtain 4 small pancakes.

Grated potato 2
Grated potato 2

Heat 1 tablespoon of oil and make sure the surface of the frying pan is covered. When the pan is hot enough, divide the potatoes straws in 4 little mounts and place them on the pan.

Frying the pancakes
Frying the pancakes

Gently flatten each one and fry each side for 2 to 2.30 minutes. Only use a thin spatula or a large bread knife to turn the rostis over. Serve as suggested below.

Tuck in...
Tuck in…

 

My rice puddings


Kiwi, rice pudding & short bread
Kiwi, rice pudding & short bread

There are many ways to make rice pudding more  and enjoyable. Just find your preferred ingredients around the house and create until you find the best way you like your pudding.

Ingredients for 2 portions:

  • 120g Ambrosia rice pudding
  • 3 Kiwis
  • 3 short bread biscuits or ginger biscuits
  • Jam or Marmalade
  • Plain pumpkin seeds
Liquidised Kiwi, sliced kiwi, chopped seeds, shortbread and rice pudding

The option below has: liquidised kiwi, rice pudding topped with short crushed shortbread.

Rice pudding and kiwi

This next one was simply served in a wine glace with marmalade and poppy seeds. Any jam will do, but  like the contrast between the bitterness of the marmalade and the soft sweetness of the rice pudding.

Rice pudding & Marmalade
Rice pudding & Marmalade

The next one  was simply layered in the following order: Rice pudding, diced kiwi, chopped seeds.

Rice pudding, kiwi & pumpkin seeds
Rice pudding, kiwi & pumpkin seeds

You can also top your rice pudding with cooked berries and red fruits jams. Just have to find your own combo… Have fun.

Download the booklet to find out facts about ingredients in the did you know section.

Did you know? Pumpkin seeds are a very popular ingredient in Mexican and West African cuisine? In Cameroon for example, the seeds are dried then, turned into a flour that will be used to cook a savoury loaf in the style of a meat loaf. The seeds can be used also to make dumplings in some sauces. These seeds are very, very high in Iron.

 

Beef casserole


Beef casserole with baby potatoes
Beef casserole with baby potatoes

Ingredients for 4 portions:

Casserole ingredients
Casserole ingredients
  • 100g celery – chopped
  • 1 big onion – cut
  • 600g baby potatoes – rinse and roughly cut
  • 400g Beef casserole
  • Vegetable oil
  • Salt & pepper
  • 1 beef stock cube
  • Thyme

Method:

In a deep pan, heat 3 tablespoons of rapeseed oil. Fry together thyme, onion and celery for 2 minutes, then add all the potatoes and brown for 5 minutes.

Now add 700ml of stock, cover and leave to simmer for 20 minutes until the potatoes soften. Now add the contents of the casserole tin over the potatoes, adjust the seasoning and cover for another 10 to 15 minutes on high heat. Check that the potatoes are firm, but, starting to dissolve. If not, leave for another 5 minutes but, stir to make sure that the bottom of the pot isn’t burning.

The casserole is ready.

Do not eat the flower!!!
Do not eat the flower!!!

Generally there aren’t many pieces of meat in tinned casseroles. So, if you’ve got some bacon in the house, feel free to add them from the beginning of the cooking process with the onion and celery.

Bon appetit!

Download the booklet here to see what I’ve used from the parcel for each dish and also the shopping tips at the bottom of each page

From the parcel: tin of beef casserole.

Shopping tips: Celery, leeks are great ingredients to always have in the house. Lidl often has these two on offer and 3 large leeks can be bought as a bundle from 89p – £1.

Homemade tomato soup


Tomato soup & Garlic and basil bread
Tomato soup & Garlic and basil bread

Ingredients for 2 portions:

Ingredients for the dish
Ingredients for the dish
  • 2 precooked mini baguettes
  • 1 scotch bonnet
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 50g leek
  • 1 tomato tin
  • Vegetable oil
  • Dry basil
  • Salt

Method:

Peel the potato and cut it very finely. Cut the leek, onion and garlic too, set aside.

Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a saucepan, fry chopped onion and potato until brown, then, add the leek and 3 chopped garlic to wilt, stirring continuously for 1 minute.

Now pour in the tomatoes and add the scotch bonnet. Also add in 200ml of water and cover for 20 minutes. What we are looking for here is for the potatoes pieces to be completely soft. After that, blend the content of the pan while it is still hot.

ARENAFor the bread, preheat the oven at 180C.

Mini baguette wedges
Mini baguette wedges

Cut the bread into wedges, mash the remaining garlic and rub it on the wedges. Place the bread on a baking dish and drizzle with oil. Sprinkle on some dried basil and bake for 8 to 10 minutes.

Nice & crispy bread wedges
Nice & crispy bread wedges

Done. Serve. Enjoy.

Do check out the booklet for some useful shopping tips and the “Did you know” section.