Gazpacho

This week the weather started to turn autumnal but only three weeks ago we were sweltering in record breaking temperatures over the Bank Holiday weekend. I was rushing around a lot of the time, helping my daughter move into her new flat, so I didn’t have time to do much cooking – and it was…

Shakshuka

This morning I cooked my first home made shakshuka – a delicious middle eastern breakfast recipe which is also vegan. Yesterday my new kitchen stools arrived so I really enjoyed celebrating by eating at the breakfast bar. I only had one egg in the fridge but I think two eggs per person is standard. I…

Aubergine and tomato curry

This is the last recipe I made before my kitchen was renovated. The new kitchen is now ready and I am gradually getting back into the habit of home cooking after coping with microwaved ready meals and takeaways. I also ate out quite lot, including going to the gym to eat in the cafe there…

Butternut squash and bean chilli

Yesterday was the hottest day of the year but a few weeks ago we had a spell of cold, wet weather when I was craving spicy, comforting food. So I made a big batch of this chilli, using a mix of beans (kidney, butter and fresh green beans) cooked in big portions to have plenty…

Sticky shiitake mushrooms

This is a vegan recipe from Bosh! which I made yesterday and devoured greedily. I swear this is one of the most delicious meals I’ve ever eaten and my photo doesn’t really do it justice.  As the Bosh recipe says ‘If you’re a fan of sticky, sweet, pan-asian cuisine you will absolutely LOVE this dish. (Seriously,…

Spicy chickpea croquettes

I made these last weekend and intended to freeze them in batches. But they were so tasty I found I was eating a few every day either as a starter or when I came home hungry from work and needed a quick snack. They are particularly nice with a range of dips and would be…

Vegan chocolate cake

This is a Nigella recipe which I have been meaning to make for a while, if only to see if it’s as good as Nigella says it is – and it is indeed delicious. I made this yesterday as I wanted something to take to a friend who is laid up with her leg in…

Chickpea curry

I’ve been stocking up my freezer with home made ready meals. This is partly to reduce my food costs (and batch cooking is one of the easiest ways to do that) and partly to have a big selection of quick meals to choose from in January when I know I’m going to be busy. I…

Stuffed peppers

A couple of weeks’ ago I watched an episode of Yottam Ottolenghi’s cookery series where he was in Crete. He visited a family restaurant where one of the specialities was stuffed vegetables. All the family got together on a vine clad, sun drenched terrace to stuff courgettes, tomatoes and peppers with a simple mixture of…

Beetroot burgers

Here’s a recipe inspired by a four day cookery and meditation retreat at Sharpham House I went on recently. This was the recipe I made as soon as I got home from the trip. It was for supper that same evening – I couldn’t wait to start trying out what I had learnt, even after…

Home made ‘baked’ beans

A couple of weeks’ ago I made a pot of home made baked beans which I froze in portions.  I say ‘baked’ but this a hob-based and very simple version of an old authentic recipe – Boston baked beans. The original version (dating back to the New England pilgrims) involved a large chunk of salt…

Roasted cauliflower steaks with vierge sauce

This is a surprisingly substantial and filling dish and at about £1.50 a portion is incredible value. The cauliflower retains a firm texture and the vierge sauce is fresh, crunchy and colourful. Adding capers to the sauce gives the dish a sharp and piquant flavour. This is a  very easy meal to make and only takes about…