Lentil & Kale Stew

Some of you may have noticed that I accidentally published this a couple of days ago…this recipe article was no way near ready and was missing a fair few things…. Oops? Anyways, here is the completed version with pictures and all. A simple and easy way to have a healthy meal, balanced with veggies and delicious earthy and almost citrusy flavours; hope you all enjoy! ☺️

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 75g red split lentils
  • 1 small carrot, finely chopped
  • 1 celery, finely chopped
  • 50g kale
  • 3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 3 dried bay leaves
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 ltr vegetable stock
  • 1 shallot finely sliced
  • 2 tbsp olive oil

Method:

  1. Start by frying the garlic, shallot, carrot, celery and bay leaves in the oil on medium heat for 3-4 minutes.
  2. Add the tomato purée, lentils and season with black pepper and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  3. Pour in the vegetable stock and cover. Leave to cook for 35 minutes or until the lentils are cooked through.
  4. Add the kale, cover and leave for 5 minutes. Serve on its own or with a portion of rice or some sourdough bread.

Sticky Spicy Aubergine

Aubergine has been a constant in the kitchen, even as a child I grew up eating aubergine weekly. It’s such a beautiful and delicious vegetable that should be praised and given the credit it deserves. Though it has constantly been a winner in my family recipes I wanted to mix it up with these sweet and spicy flavours that really brings out the deliciousness of the aubergine.

Ingredients:

  • 1 aubergine, halved and sliced into batons
  • 1 tbsp golden syrup
  • 3 tbsp sesame oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, grated
  • 1 birdseye chilli, finely chopped
  • Sesame seeds, for serving

Method:

  1. In a pan, fry the aubergine in two tablespoons of sesame oil on medium heat for 8-10 minutes or until softened and browned.
  2. While the aubergine is frying, take a small bowl and mix the garlic, chilli, syrup and oil together thoroughly.
  3. Pour the sweet and spicy mixture over the aubergine and cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Delicious as a side dish or with some slow cooked meat.

Baked Chicken Legs with Apple & Cloves

This is one of those flavour combinations that is an absolute winner. The allspice and cloves give a deep, rich and almost smokey flavour; the sweet and sharp apple gives your tastebuds something to savour. The garlic in the gravy adds that little kick at the end of each mouthful and will leave people fighting over the dinner table for the last drop. Whether served with roast potatoes, a simple salad or even with some bread to mop up the juices, this simple dinner will remain a firm favourite.

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 2 chicken legs
  • 1 granny smith apple, peeled, cored and finely sliced
  • 2 small shallots, finely sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 1 tbsp golden syrup
  • 1/4 tsp ground allspice
  • 150ml chicken stock
  • 2 tbsp olive oil

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C fan.
  2. In a bowl, mix the allspice, golden syrup and the olive oil together. Add the chicken legs and coat the meat in the marinade; then leave to one side.
  3. In a baking tray, place on the stove and fry the garlic, shallot and cloves together until translucent.
  4. Evenly distribute the apple slices, making a bed at the bottom of the baking tray.
  5. Place the chicken on top of the apple and take any excess marinade from the bowl and spread over the meat.
  6. Pour in the stock around the meat and place the baking tray in the oven. Leave to bake for 40-45 minutes (basting the meat every 20 minutes) or until chicken runs clean and not pink.

Enjoy 🙂

Bean & Pepper Salad

A filling lunchtime meal, packed full of flavour and so simple to make. There’s something about beans and pulses for veganuary that are an absolute winner. Guaranteed flavour, filling and wholesome.

Ingredients:

  • 1 can cannellini beans
  • 1 sweet Ramiro pepper, roughly chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, grated
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 handful of parsley, finely chopped
  • Salt
  • Cayenne pepper
  • 2 tbsp olive oil

Method:

  1. Start by draining the cannellini beans and rinse them thoroughly.
  2. Place the beans, pepper and parsley in a bowl and mix.
  3. In a separate and smaller bowl mix all the other ingredients, including a pinch of cayenne pepper.
  4. Drizzle over the beans, pepper and parsley, mix again and serve.

Enjoy ☺️

Sweet & Spicy Broccoli Soup

The perfect balance of sweet and spicy; a flavourful and warming soup.

Ingredients:

  • 375g broccoli, roughly chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 1 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 650ml vegetable stock
  • 2 tbsp golden syrup
  • 2 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes

Method:

  1. On medium heat, start by frying the garlic in the sesame oil for a couple of minutes.
  2. Add the chilli flakes and fry for another minute.
  3. Add the broccoli and the soy sauce and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Pour in the vegetable stock, mix well, cover and leave to cook for 20 minutes.
  5. Using a hand blender blitz the soup until smooth.
  6. Drizzle in the golden syrup, mix and serve.

Enjoy ☺️

Curried Black Rice & Lentils

I love mixing things up in the kitchen and getting all experimental. It’s the best form of cooking and just makes the ‘eating’ part even more enjoyable when the recipe works to perfection. I haven’t used much black rice in my recipes before so I thoroughly enjoyed incorporating this delicious ingredient, I hope you all enjoy it too!

Ingredients:

  • 100g red split lentils
  • 3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 1 medium sized shallot, roughly chopped
  • 1 can (400g) coconut milk
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 100g black rice
  • 1/4 tsp ground allspice
  • 1/4 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 300ml vegetable stock
  • 1/2 tsp medium curry powder
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 tsp lime juice

Method:

  1. Start by frying the garlic and shallot together in the oil until translucent.
  2. Add the tomato purée and fry for a minute.
  3. Sprinkle over all of the seasonings and add the lentils and keep frying for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Then add the rice and pour in the coconut milk and vegetable stock; mix thoroughly.
  5. Cover and drop the heat to medium low and cook for 35-40 minutes or until the rice is cooked through. Be aware to stir occasionally as the lentils will stick to the pan.
  6. Just before serving drizzle over the lime juice and mix.

Enjoy!

Sweet Potato & Black Bean Stew

The huge temperature drop has not gone unnoticed this week, it has been so cold! Fortunately this hearty, vegan recipe is the way to go for the perfect comforting and flavourful dish.

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 2 small sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 1 can (400g) black beans
  • 1 can (400g) chopped tomatoes
  • 1 medium sized shallot, roughly chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 400ml vegetable stock
  • 1 handful fresh spinach

Method:

  1. Start by frying the garlic and shallot together in the olive oil on medium heat until softened and translucent.
  2. Add the sweet potato and all the seasonings and fry for 2-3 minutes.
  3. Then add the beans and fry for another minute.
  4. Add the tomatoes and leave to cook for 4-5 minutes.
  5. Pour in the stock, cover and drop the heat to medium-low. Cook for 35-40 minutes or until the potatoes are cooked through.
  6. Remove the lid and add the spinach, mix and leave for 5 minutes and serve.

Best served hot.

Mustard Beef Casserole

A recipe filled with deep flavours, highlighting the richness of the beef as it slow cooks for 3 hours becoming tender and juicy. Fantastic if you have leftover or off cut pieces of beef that need using up. The gravy is an absolute winner in this dish and is so delicious with fluffy and crispy roast potatoes.

Serves 3

Ingredients:

  • 380g beef shin, cut unto chunks
  • 2 shallots, roughly chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 150ml white wine
  • 150ml beef stock
  • 250g frostier mushrooms, roughly chopped
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbsp plain flour
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp double cream
  • 1 dsp wholegrain mustard

Method:

  1. Start by coating the beef in plain flour.
  2. On medium heat, pour in 2 tablespoons of olive oil and the coated beef into a deep pan. Fry for 5 minutes or until browned and sealed. Then remove the beef from the pan and place on a plate.
  3. Add one tablespoon of olive oil to the pan and add the garlic and shallot. Fry together until translucent.
  4. Add the mushrooms and leave to cook for 4-5 minutes allowing the water contained to be released.
  5. Put the meat back in the pan along with 50ml of white wine and cook for 4 minutes.
  6. Pour in the stock and the remaining 100ml of wine and bring to a gentle boil. Season with salt and pepper and add the worcestershire sauce. Mix well, cover and drop the heat. Leave to cook for 3 hours, stirring every 30 minutes or so.
  7. Just before serving, mix the mustard and cream together in a separate bowl. Then mix into the casserole and serve.

Best served with roast potatoes and seasonal vegetables.

Bacon wrapped Dates with Blue Cheese & Almonds

‘Tis the season for the indulgence and the time of the year where you can have all the naughty foods and truly enjoy those deep and rich flavours. These small bites of pure heaven are the perfect festive snack or starter and a real treat.
For this recipe smoked bacon was the port of call for me as it provides a more balanced sweet and savoury contrast. However, they are just as delicious using unsmoked.

12 dates

Ingredients:

  • 12 medjool dates
  • 6 bacon rashers
  • Flaked almonds
  • Stilton blue cheese
  • Golden syrup

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 5 or 170 fan and line a baking tray with greaseproof paper.
  2. Cut the dates lengthwise (not all the way through) and remove the stones.
  3. Take around a 1/4 teaspoon of cheese and stuff the dates. Then take 2-3 almond flakes and place inside too.
  4. Cut the bacon rasher in half and wrap around the date. Make sure to keep the wrap around part of the meat at the bottom so that it won’t fall apart when cooking. Place each date on the baking tray.
  5. Drizzle over a small amount of golden syrup and place in the oven. Bake for 20 minutes or until the bacon is golden and crispy.

Enjoy! 🙂

Courgette Soup

It’s the last weekend in November and let’s be honest, December is going to be one busy month. There’s always so much going on this time of the year, I can’t lie, I’m struggling to find the time to do anything at the moment there’s just so much going on. A lot of rich and tasty food is going to be enjoyed next month so this is a lighter option to balance out all the heavier or more decadent meals that we are about to consume. A delicious winter warmer that contains a mild but flavourful kick of a little summin summin that’s not quite a curry but brings those packets of warm hearty flavours.

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 1 courgette, cut into chunks
  • 2 small chilli’s, roughly chopped
  • 1 medium potato, cut into small chunks
  • 3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 tsp medium curry powder
  • 1 can (400g) coconut milk
  • 1 inch piece ginger, grated
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp lime juice

Method:

  1. In a pan, start by frying the garlic and ginger together in the oil for 1-2 minutes on medium heat.
  2. Add the courgette and potato and cook for 5-7 minutes, stirring ocassionally.
  3. Season with the curry powder, salt and add the chilli and continue frying for a couple more minutes.
  4. Pour in the coconut milk, stir, cover and leave to cook for 10 minutes (or until the potatoes are cooked through.)
  5. Remove from the heat and blitz using a food processor or hand blender. Drizzle over the lime juice, mix and serve.

Enjoy 🙂