Family Favourites Vegetarian

Hamish’s Egg & Cress Sandwiches

Every Christmas Eve Hamish insists on making egg and cress sandwiches when we have neighbours round for a few drinks and snacks.
1 half loaf white good quality medium cut bread
9 medium eggs
3 punnets cress
1 tbls good salted butter
1 tbls Hellmans
Salt to taste
How difficult can it be. Boil eggs for no more than 5 minutes and scoop out while still hot and crush with a fork whilst adding the mayo and butter. Keep aside to cool but don’t put in fridge because it makes it too difficult to spread. Then go for it and spread eggs onto buttered slices. Cut the cress 1cm from the top and sprinkle over the slices. Top up and cut off the crusts leaving some to look home made. Sprinkle a wee drop cress over to make it look good.

Family Favourites Holidays Starters Vegetarian

Katie’s Focaccia

500g strong white flour
7g sachet fast action dried yeast
1 tsp caster sugar
1 tsp fine sea salt
300mls warm water
2 tablespoonfuls olive oil
Another 2 tablespoonfuls of olive oil

1. Put flour, sugar, yeast and salt in a big bowl. Mix up the olive oil and water and por onto flour mixture. Stir to mix and bring together with your hands into a rough ball.
2. Put the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 5 minutes to a smooth fairly soft dough. Put the dough into a lightly oiled bowl, cover loosely with cling-film and leave to rise in a warm place for an hour until it has doubled in size.
3. Lightly oil a large baking tray 15″x10″.
4. Put the dough on to a floured surface and flatten out with your knuckles into a rectangle shape the same size as your baking tray and press out to the edges of the tray.
5. Again cover with loose cling-film and leave in a warm place for another half hour.
6. Preheat oven at 220C.
7. Now the focaccia should look puffed up and spongy. Poke the dough into dimples all over.
8. Drizzle the focaccia with 2 tablespoonfuls of olive oil and sprinkle with chopped up rosemary leaf and sea salt. A few sprigs of rosemary will make it look nice.
9. Bake in middle of oven for 15-20 minutes or until risen and a golden brown.

Serving suggestions
Serve up when still warm with even more intense olive oil and salt, or as per photo, let it cool a bit and serve up full of good Italian ingredients like mortadella, rugala (rocket), roasted peppers, sundried tomato, mozzaralla and more.

Salads Side Dishes Vegetarian

Cauliflower Tabbouleh

1 Cauliflower
1 Red onion, chopped
4 Radishes, sliced
2 Large tomatoes, diced
2 Handfuls of chopped parsley
1 Handful of chopped mint leaves
Juice of one lemon
Salt, pepper and a splash of olive oil

Process raw cauliflower in food processor until it looks like rice. Put in bowl and cover with cling-film. Pierce film and microwave on high for 7 minutes. Allow to cool totally and mix in all the other ingredients. Mix well and add a sprinkling of flaked almonds as garnish. How healthy does it get?



IMG_1019I have added this recipe as it fits ideally in the 5/2 diet in that it is under 200 Kcal and is a healthy breakfast.

Ingredients for 2 people
One third cup of wheat bran
Two thirds cup of jumbo rolled oats
Two cups of water
One teaspoonful of salt

Mix and microwave for 7 minutes giving it a stir half way through. Serve with milk.

Hot & Spicy Vegetarian

Masala Omelette

IMG_0876>Discovered in India but adapted to home.

Ingredients for one person, two eggs, finely sliced coriander stalks, diced hot red chilli to taste. Mix all together and fry in lightly oiled non stick pan. Serve on a morning roll. (In India they also might include diced red onion, chopped ginger and diced seedless tomato.) Waitrose sell frozen diced red chilli in sachets. Predictable strength is good compared to variable strength of the fresh product.

Main Courses Soups Vegetarian

Mexican Soup for 2

1 tin chopped tomatoes
1 tin chicken stock using tomato tin to measure
1/2 cup each of carrot, turnip, onion, courgette & mushroom all chopped
1/2 tin red kidney beans
1/2 teaspoonful of cumin
Chilli flakes to taste, some like it hot!
1/2 teaspoonful dried oregano

Put in pan and simmer until cooked for about 20 minutes, easy!


Beans and an Apple

IMG_0149Ingredients for 2
1 tin baked beans 415g
1 medium size of your favourite apple.

Open the tin of beans. Chop half the apple and mix in with the beans. Keep the other half of the apple for your pudding. It sounds silly but it is 200 Kcal and quite satisfying for a lunch. If you like hot sauce, add some to the beans mix.


Baked Mushroom with Boursin & Tomato for 2

4 large “field” mushrooms
1 tub Boursin Light
2 medium tomatoes

Spray mushrooms lightly with oil, divide and spread the Boursin on the mushrooms. Slice tomato and put on top. Salt, pepper and fan oven at 180C for 15 minutes. Tastes great!

Main Courses Vegetarian

Two Egg Omelette with Mushrooms


Hot & Spicy Soups Vegetarian

Indian Chickpea & Vegetable Curry Soup for 2

2 teaspoonfuls of vegetable oil
1 chopped onion
1 teaspoonful of grated ginger
1 chopped garlic clove
2 teaspoonfuls of garam masala
Chilli flakes to taste
3/4 pint chicken stock
1 large chopped carrot
1/2 of a 14oz tin of chickpeas, drained
2 oz of chopped green beans
2 sticks of chopped celery
4 halved cherry tomatoes

Heat the oil and fry the onion, ginger and garlic for one minute. Add the garam masala and chillies and give one more minute. Then add the stock and carrot. Simmer for 15 minutes then add the chickpeas. Use a stick blender to whize the soup a little or use a masher. Stir in the rest of the ingredients and simmer for 10 more minutes. Decorate with some fresh coriander if you have some.

Side Dishes Vegetarian

Fabulous Red Cabbage from Birgit

 1kg (or 1) Red Cabbage – Finely Sliced on a Mandolin (This is Very Important for Texture)
4 Cloves
1 Tbsp Goosefat
2 Shallots – Finely Chopped
1 Apple – Diced Finely
300ml Red Wine
250gm Cranberries
Castor Sugar
Butter & Salt to Taste
Cook the cranberries with 2 table spoons of caster sugar and 25gm of butter for 15 minutes until everything is soft.  Add this to the cabbage pot once done.
Saute the shallots in the goosefat, then we add 2 tablespoons of caster sugar, then we add the cabbage and the red wine and stir it well, add the apple and the cloves.  Cook on a medium temperature for about 5 minutes, then cook on a low heat for 50-60 minutes.  Add salt to taste.
Starters Vegetarian

Cheats Cheese Souffle

  • Ingredients   for six
  • 100gm parmesan cheese
  • 40gm plain flour
  • 250ml milk
  • salt, pepper, grated nutmeg
  • 30gm butter
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 2 egg whites stiffly beaten
  • 350ml double cream

METHOD  Put the milk, flour,seasoning and butter in a non stick pan and whisk over a medium heat until smooth and thick. Leave to cool for a few minutes stirring then add half the grated cheese the egg yolks .and fold in the stiffly beaten whites. Butter six individual moulds or ramekin dishes and divide the mixture between them. Place in a deep roasting tin and pour boiling water into tin until halfway up moulds. Put in oven preheated to 160 (fan) for 15 minutes until firm and spongy to touch. Butter six individual gratin dishes and scatter with a little of the remaining cheese. Turn out the souffles carefully onto the cheese in the dishes. You can then leave these overnight in fridge loosely covered with clingfilm.       When ready to serve pour 2tbsps of double cream over each and scatter the rest of the cheese. Put in oven at160 (fan) for 15 minutes until puffed and golden. Serve immediately!!!!!










Cakes and Muffins Desserts Family Favourites Vegetarian

Apricot Slice


1cup caster sugar

1 teaspoon baking powder

6oz butter cold diced

1 cup jumbo rolled oats

1 cup pecans ground in food processor

2 1/2 cups dried apricots chopped

1/3 cup marmalade

extra 1 1/2 oz butter melted

Preheat oven to 170 fan. Put the apricots in a pan with 1/2 cup water and boil gently until water absorbed. Leave to cool.

Put the flour, sugar, baking powder and butter and procedd until a sort of crumble forms. Mix in the oats and ground pecans. Reserve a cupful of the crumble and press the rest into a greased ans lined 8x12inch baking tin.Bake for 15mins until golden. Cool for 10 mins or so then spoon apricots evenly over the base. Dot over the marmalade then and sprinkle the reserved crumble over the top. Spoon on the melted butter and bake for 30-35 mins until golden. Allow to cool aompletely in the tray. Serve sliced into squares.

Holidays Vegetarian

Moroccan Mushrooms with Chickpeas

  • 1 onion sliced
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • pinch flaked red chilli
  • 8oz mushrooms quartered
  • 1 can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 can chickpeas drained
  • 1 tsp clear honey

Fry the onion in  the oil until softened. Add the cinnamon chilli and cumin and stir in. Add the mushrooms ,stir then add the tomatoes ,chickpeas ,and honey. Season with salt and pepper and simmer for ten minutes.

I like to serve this with couscous soaked along with some chopped dried apricots then roast pinenuts and chopped parsley added before serving

Family Favourites Karen's Recipes Side Dishes Vegetarian

Parsnip Potato and Gruyere Bake

  • For Four people
  • 1lb potatoes
  • 1lb parsnips
  • 4oz gruyere(grated)
  • 2 tbsp single cream
  • pepper

Peel and chop potatoes and parsnips.
Boil together until tender then mash with pepper and cream. Stir in 3/4 of the gruyere and place the mixture in a buttered ovenproof dish. scatter over the rest of the gruyere. Can be made to this point the day before .When serving put into oven at 180 for 40 minutes until heated through and golden


Taleggio Tart

  • Serves four
  • 25 gm butter
  • a little olive oil
  • 240gm muchrooms thinly sliced
  • 1 large onion thinly sliced
  • fresh thyme leaves
  • 375 gm chilled puff pastry
  • 300gm sliced taleggio cheese
  • 1 egg beaten

Heat half the butter and a little oil and add the sliced mushrooms. cook until softened.Set aside
Heat the rest of the butter and oil and fry the onion gently until meltingly soft then add the fresh thyme to taste.Season with freshly ground pepper. Cool.
Unroll pastry onto an oven tray lined with baking paper. Cover one half with the onion ,mushrooms then sliced cheese.Brush the pastry edge with beaten egg and fold pastry over and seal.
Chill for 30 minutes in fridge.
Preheat oven to fan 200c.
Brush the pastry with the rest of the egg and lightly score the surface in a lattice pattern-take care not to cut right through. Bake for 15-20 mins until golden
I serve with a green salad

Hot & Spicy Side Dishes Vegetarian

Aubergine Dhal

  • For two people
  • Splash oil-not olive
  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic finely chopped
  • 1 teasp grated fresh ginger
  • 1 teasp cumin seeds
  • 1 teasp nigella seeds
  • 1 tablespoon medium curry powder
  • 3oz red split lentils
  • 1 small or half a med aubergine cut in bite size pieces
  • 1 large or several small tomatoes cut in chunks
  • 1 handful fresh coriander-chopped

Heat the oil and saute the onions for a few minutes until soft and lightly brown
Stir in garlic, ginger,seeds and curry powder
Add lentils with tomatoes and 300ml water
Add aubergine and bring to a simmer.
Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 30 minutes
Add coriander and serve

Hot & Spicy Main Courses Side Dishes Vegetarian

Chickpeas with Chilli and Tomatoes

  • For Four
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 red onion finely sliced-or normal if that is what uou have
  • 3 cloves garlic finely sliced
  • 2 teaspoons finely grated fresh ginger
  • 2 green chillies finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2x400gm tins chickpeas drained or the equivelant in fresh cooked
  • 1 teasp ground cumin
  • fresh ground black pepper
  • 500gm small tomatoes sliced in half
  • 200gm baby spinach leaves
  • Plain yoghurt (I like Greek) to serve

Heat a large deep pan and add the oil, onion, garlic, ginger, chilli and salt. Cook stirring for 5 minutes until the onion is soft.
Add the ckickpeas, 80ml water, cumin and pepper andd cook for five more minutes until most of the water evaporates. Add the tomatoes and cook for another 2 minutes to soften. Taste for seasoning then stir in the spinach so it wilts. Serve with yoghurt and boiled rice or nan

Salads Side Dishes Vegetarian

Black bean salsa

  • for four
  • 1/2 cup black beans soaked overnight and cooked and cooled
  • 1 mango peeled and diced
  • 1/2 cucumber peeled and diced
  • 5 cherry tomatoes cut in chunks
  • 6 spring onions sliced
  • 1 red chilli deseeded and finely chopped
  • 1/4 teasp ground cumin
  • 1 avocado peeled and diced
  • small handful coriander herb chopped
  • Juice of 1 lime

Mix all together and add a little salt to taste.

Great served with roast salmon or other oily fish

Hot & Spicy Side Dishes Vegetarian

Asher Bootes Lentil Puree

  • For four -easily doubled or more
  • A non-stick pan makes this a lot easier
  • 1 stalk celery
  • 1/2 a med onion
  • 1 small carrot
  • 200gm red lentils
  • 400ml water
  • leaves from a small sprig of fresh rosemary
  • salt/pepper to taste
  • I like this with any plain cooked meat but especially with baked or grilled gammon

Finely dice all the veg and cook in a little oil until soft. Add lentils water and rosemary. Simmer ver-r-ry gently stirring from time to time until lentils are soft-about 40 minutes.
season with salt and pepper

A little curry powder added as you cook the veg would make this into a great dhal for indian dishes.

Holidays Main Courses Starters Vegetarian

Aubergines with Goat’s Cheese and Cherry Tomatoes

  • 2 large aubergines, about 225g/8oz each
  • 2-3tbsp olive oil
  • 1 red pepper, halved, seeded and chopped
  • 3 shallots, chopped
  • 175g/6oz cherry tomatoes
  • 175g/6oz firm goat’s cheese, sliced
  • 2 tsp chopped fresh thyme
  • Seasoning

1. Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6. Cut the aubergines in half, prepare and salt. Brush cut sides with a little oil, place on a baking sheet and bake for 35-40 minutes until the flesh is tender.

2. Scoop out the flesh to within 1cm/1/2in of the skin. Chop the flesh, then heat one tablespoon of the oil and fry the pepper and shallots until soft. add the flesh and seasoning, mixing well.

3. Pile the mixture back into the shells. Arrange the tomatoes and goat’s cheese in alternate lines along the top. Drizzle over the remaining oil and sprinkle with the thyme. Return to the oven for 20-25 minutes.

Serves 4

Cakes and Muffins Desserts Family Favourites Vegetarian

Marathon Scones

This recipe was very kindly given to me when visiting a town called Marathon near the Big Bend national park in Texas. the lady who made them first was Barbara Novovitch. Do try this they are great.

  • 2 cups plain flour
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 teasp salt
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup chopped dried fruit (Apricots Prunes Mango Blueberries Cranberries Papaya all work well or any mixture)
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1 1/4 cup double cream
  • Glaze 1oz of butter melted and a little more sugar

Combine flour, baking powder,salt,sugar, dried fruit and raisins in a bowl. Stir in the cream with a fork mixing until the dough holds together in a sticky mass. Lightly flour a board and turn out the dough kneading it eight or ten times until it holds together well. Pat into a circle about 10 inches round. Paint the melted butter on top and sprinkle on the extra sugar. Cut into 12 wedges and place on an ungreased baking sheet about 1 inch apart. bake at 220deg C or 200 in fan assisted oven for 16 to 17 minutes until golden brown,


Salads Vegetarian

24 Hour Salad

  • Chopped Iceberg lettuce
  • Chopped celery
  • Chopped spring onion
  • Frozen peas
  • Cooked streaky bacon-chopped
  • Mayonnaise mixed with a little sugar
  • Grated mature cheddar

Layer all ingredients in a bowl (glass looks pretty) in the order given. Make sure the mayo goes right to the edge to seal. Quantities are variable as you like.
Cover with clingfilm and serve next day.

Holidays Salads Vegetarian

St Agur, Avocado & Pecan Salad

  • Chopped assorted salad leaves-I used baby spinach, rocket and little gem.
  • Tomatoes-about two small for each person
  • finely sliced red onion-only a very small amount
  • Half an avocado per person
  • Six pecan halves per person- roughly chopped
  • a few thin slices of courgette(optional)
  • 1oz St Agur cheese cut into small cubes
  • 1 rasher back bacon grilled and cut in small dice
  • An extra mustardy vinaigrette

Chop leaves into fork sized pieces and toss with a little vinaigrett in a bowl. Put in individual bowls.
Add chopped tomatoes, onion, avocado scooped with a teaspoon into small bits, pecans, courgettes, bacon and cheese. Grate over some black pepper and add a little more vinaigrette to each bowl- not too much or you overpower the other flavours.

Holidays Hot & Spicy Salads Side Dishes Vegetarian

Lentil and Avocado Salsa

  • For Two as a side dish
  • 1 cup puy lentils
  • diced cucumber
  • diced avocado
  • diced red onion
  • chopped coriander
  • chopped flat leaf parsley
  • finely diced red chilli
  • olive oil
  • juice of a lime

Cook lentils in boiling water until tender. salt after cooking and add oil to drained lentils.
Add all other ingredients. Quantities are very variable depending on amount needed.
Chill until required

Main Courses Side Dishes Starters Vegetarian

Roasted Vegetable Paella

  • 75g/23/4oz courgettes, cut into 2.5cm/1in chunks
  • 75g/23/4oz aubergines, cut into 2.5cm/1in chunks
  • 1/2 red onion, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1 small stick celery, cut into 2.5cm/1in chunks
  • 1/2 red or yellow pepper, deseeded and cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 75g/23/4oz cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 small clove garlic, chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 small sprig rosemary
  • 1 small sprig thyme
  • 2tbsp virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 75g/23/4oz basmati rice, washed and drained
  • 300ml/1/2 pint chicken or vegetable stock
  • Chopped fresh herbs to serve

1. Preheat oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6. Put all the vegetables in a large roasting pan or shallow ovenproof dish with the garlic and herbs. Sprinkle with olive oil, season well with salt and pepper and roast for about 45 minutes or until all the vegetables are tender and beginning to brown slightly at the edges.

2. Put the rice in a small ovenproof dish, put the vegetables on top and pour over the stock. Cook in the oven for about 1 hour or until all the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is tender. Serve on hot plates sprinkled with fresh herbs.

Holidays Hot & Spicy Salads Side Dishes Starters Vegetarian

Spicy Bean & Cucumber Salad

  • 2 cups cooked chopped green beans, about 11oz
  • 1 cup finely chopped peeled cucumber, about 1 medium cucumber
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped red onion, 1/2 medium onion
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • 2 tbsp red wine vinegar or cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp chopped fresh hot green chillie pepper or 1/4 crushed red
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1/2 salt

Mix all infredients. cover and refrigerate for about 2 hours or until chilled

Serves 6

Hot & Spicy Main Courses Side Dishes Vegetarian

Spicy Tomato Beans

  • 225g/8oz french beans, trimmed
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely sliced
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 large beef tomato, roughly chopped
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 3 tbsp water
  • 1/2 tsp tabasco sauce
  • 1/4 tsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp fresh chopped basil
  • 2 tbsp low-fat yoghurt

1. Cut the french beans in half. Heat up a pan of salted water, add the beans, cook for 5 minutes, then drain.

2. Heat the olive oil in a pan. Add the sliced onion and crushed garlic and fry gently until soft and just beginning to brown. Then add the chopped beef tomato, tomato puree, water, tabasco sauce and sugar. Bring to the boil, cover the pan and simmer gently for 5 minutes.

3. Add the cooked beans tot he tomato mixture along with the chopped basil and salt and pepper. Cover again and cook for a further 5 minutes over a medium heat. Finally, stir in the natural yoghurt and serve.

Serves 4

Holidays Main Courses Side Dishes Vegetarian

Spinach and Lentil Curry

  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 5 oz red split lentils

  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1-2 green chillies, deseeded and finely chopped
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 4 cardamom pods, crushed
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp fenugreek seeds, crushed (optional)
  • 4 tomatoes, chopped
  • 425ml/3/4 pint water
  • 450g/1lb fresh spinach, stems removed and leaves roughly chopped
  • large handful fresh coriander, chopped
  • small handful chopped mint, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper

1. Heat the oil then slowly fry the onions and garlic until golden. Add the chillies and spices then cook for a minute more.

2. Stir in the lentils, tomatoes and water then cover and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent the mixture from sticking.

3. Taste to see if the lentils are tender then add the chopped spinach, coriander, mint and seasoning. Simmer for 5-10 more.

4. Serve with rice and chutney.

Serves 4

Side Dishes Vegetarian

Scalloped Potatoes

  • 5-6 Large potatoes
  • 150ml/1/4 pint milk
  • 300ml/1/2 pint double cream
  • 1 tbsp cornflour
  • 100g/1/4lb Gruyere or Emmenthal cheese, grated
  • salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • freshly grated nutmeg
  • cayenne pepper
  • 2 tbsp softened butter for greasing
  • 2tbsp diced butter

1. Peel the potatoes and cut them into thin slices, then soak in cold water for 10 minutes. drain and pat dry

2. Prepare a cheese sauce. Heat the milk and double cream, then pour onto a paste made with 2 tbsp water and the cornflour. Stir in the grated cheese and simmer over a moderate heat, stirring constantly, until the cheese has melted and the sauce thickened. Season with salt, black pepper, nutmeg and cayenne pepper, then remove from heat.

3. Heat oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6.

4. Butter a medium-sized gratin dish generously. Cover the base with a layer of overlapping potatoes and season with salt, freshly ground black pepper and nutmeg.

5. Spoon one-third of the cheese sauce over the potatoes. Cover with another layer of overlapping potatoes and seson again with salt, pepper and nutmeg. Cover with half the remaining cheese sauce, and top with a third layer of overlapping potatoes. Season again and spoon over the rest of the cheese sauce. Dot with diced butter and bake for 15 minutes.

6. Reduce the oven heat to 190C/375F/Gas 5. Cover the potatoes with foil and continue to cook for 35 minutes. Remove from the oven.

7. Just before your guests sit down to lunch, remove the foil and return the dish to the oven for 20 minutes until crisp and golden on top.

Side Dishes Vegetarian

Liz’s Portuguese Courgettes

  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • Garlic, to taste
  • 4-6 courgettes
  • Large pinch paprika
  • Large pinch rosemary
  • Salt
  • Black pepper
  • Plain flour
  • Chicken or vegetable stock
  • Large can of chopped tomatoes
  • Fresh parmesan
  • Pinch of mixed herbs
  • Large squirt tomato puree

1. Fry onion and chopped or crushed garlic. Meanwhile boil sliced courgettes in salted water until just beginning to soften.

2. To frying pan add paprika, tomato puree, rosemary, mixed herbs and flour. Stir round for 2 minutes then gradually add stock and tomatoes, until it begins to thicken.

3. Drain courgettes and add frying pan mix to courgettes. Sprinkle with grated parmesan and microwave or cook in medium oven for about 20 minutes.

4. Can be refrigerated overnight to develop flavour.

Serves 4

Family Favourites Starters Vegetarian

Camembert & Onion Parcels

  • 50g/2oz butter
  • 2 spanish onions, sliced
  • 2 tbsp light muscovado sugar
  • 1 tsp white wine vinegar
  • 400g packet filo pastry
  • 1 Camembert cheeses, about 250g/9oz, cut into 6 pieces
  • 6 tsp cranberry sauce
  • Seasoning

1. Melt half of the butter in a pan, then add the onions, sugar and vinegar. Cook over a low heat for 25 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions are carmelised.

2. Preheat the oven too 200C/400F/Gas 6. Melt the remaining butter. Cut the filo pastry into 24 15cm/6in squares. Layer four squares, one on top of the other, making a half turn each time to form a star shape. Brush each square with butter as you work; repeat with the remaining pastry to make five more stars.

3. Place a piece of cheese in the centre of each star, then top with the onions and a teaspoon of the cranberry sauce. Draw up the pastry to enclose the filling; pinch well to seal. Brush with melted butter, place on a greased baking sheet and bake for 10-15 minutes until golden brown; serve immediately.

Holidays Salads Side Dishes Starters Vegetarian

Bean & Mint Salad

  • 420g/1 tin butter beans
  • 175g feta cheese
  • Large bunch of mint
  • 175g baby plum tomatoes, halved
  • 1 red onion, sliced
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 75g pecan nuts, chopped
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preparation time: 10 minutes

1. Drain the beans and crumble the cheese. Remove the stalks from the mint and chop the leaves.

2. Mix together all the ingredients and serve.

Serves 4

Hot & Spicy Main Courses Side Dishes Vegetarian

Spiced Chickpeas

  • 400gm tin of Chickpeas
  • 1/2 Onion Chopped
  • 1 table spoon of spicy curry paste
  • 2 Tomato Ripe and Chopped
  • 1 Handfull of baby spinach
  • 1 Handfull of corriander chopped
  • Water or Stock

Fry the onion until soft
add the curry paste and stir for a few minutes
add the tomatos and chickpeas and water (a little at a time)
let this simmer for about 20 minutes
add spinach at last minute
garnish with coriander

can be served with:
Tandoori Chicken
Naan Bread
Rice etc etc.

Hot & Spicy Karen's Recipes Salads Side Dishes Vegetarian

Karens Vietnamese Coleslaw

  • 2 Garlic Cloves Crushed
  • 2 Tbsp Sweet Chilli Sauce
  • 1 Tbsp Sugar
  • 2 Tbsp Rice Wine Vinegar
  • Juice of 2 Limes
  • 2 Tbsp Fish Sauce
  • 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1/2 Lrg Onion Thinly Sliced
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  • 1/2 White Cabbage – thinly sliced
  • 2 Carrots Grated
  • 3 Chicken Breasts Cubed
  • Lots of mint/corriander

Mix it all up together
Garnish with a good handfull of nuts (peanuts or brazils)

Soups Starters Vegetarian

Parsnip Soup

  • 2 tbls oil
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1 garlic glove crushed
  • 1 tbls mild curry paste or powder
  • 450g / 1lb parsnips, cut into 21/2/1in chunks
  • 600ml/1pint chicken stock
  • salt and pepper
  • 4 tbls low-fat natural yoghurt
  • fresh chopped chives to garnish

1. Heat the oil in a large pan. Add the onion and garlic and fry until soft. Then add the curry paste or powder and cook for a few seconds, stirring constantly.

2. Add the parsnip chunks to the onion mixture. Pour in the chicken stock and stir well. Season with the salt and pepper, bring the soup to the boil, and simmer for 15 minutes or until the parsnips are tender.

3. Transfer the soup to a food processor or blender, and process until smooth. Return to the pan, add more salt and pepper, if necessary, and reheat.

4. Pour the soup into serving bowls and top with a swirl of yoghurt. Garnish with the chopped chives and serve.

Serves 4

Family Favourites Salads Side Dishes Vegetarian

Fionas Beetroot Chutney

  • 1350g/3lb cooked beetroot
  • 675g/11/2lb apples
  • 2 large onions
  • 225g/8oz sugar
  • 600ml/1pint vinegar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground ginger

1. Boil apples and chopped onions with ginger, salt, sugar and vinegar for 30 minutes.

2. Add diced beetroot and cook for a further 10 minutes.

3. Bottle chutney.

Family Favourites Main Courses Vegetarian

Cheese and Tomato Rice

  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 red pepper, coredd, seeded and sliced
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 300g/10oz long grain rice
  • 1 litre/13/4 pints chicken or vegetable stock
  • Can of chopped tomatoes
  • 100g/4oz mature cheddar, cubed
  • Chives and salad leaves to garnish

Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 45 – 50 minutes

1. Preheat oven to 180c/Gas 4/fan oven cook from cold at 160c. Heat the oil in a large flameproof casserole, then cook the onion and red pepper over a medium heat for about 5 minutes until soft and golden. Add the chopped garlic and cook for a further minute.

2. Stir in the rice until completely coated in oil, then add the stock and tomatoes, and season with salt and pepper. Bring to the boil and simmer for 5 minutes until nearly all the liquid has been absorbed.

3. Scatter over the cheese, cover the casserole and cook in the oven for about 30 minutes until the rice is tender. Leave for 5 minutes before garnishing with chives and salad.

Serves 4

Holidays Soups Vegetarian

Onion Soup

  • 1350g/3lbs onions
  • Coarse salt
  • 3 large tbsp beef dripping
  • 4-5 heaped tbsp plain flour
  • 4 pints stock
  • Tomato puree
  • Pesto
  • Fresh parmesan to serve

1. Slice onions and place in a pan with coarse salt and beef dripping. Cook in low oven for about 2 hours.

2. Add plain flour and boiling stock until pan is full again, about 4 pints of stock. Put back in oven and cook until creamy.

3. Remove from oven and liquidise. Add some tomato puree and a small quantity of pesto.

4. Serve with freshly grated parmesan. Flavour improves with maturity.

Holidays Main Courses Salads Vegetarian

Avocado and Rocket Salad

  • 2 Large or 3 Small Ripe Avocados
  • 1 Bag of Rocket (wild is more peppery)
  • 1 Pack of Lardons
  • 1/4 Cup of Pine Nuts
  • 3 Slices of white bread or rolls.
  • Good Extra Virgin Olive Oil for Frying.

Prepare a bed of rocket in a large flat salad dish. Then halve the avocados and with a tea spoon, scoup out balls of avocado and spread evenly over the rocket.
Toast the pine nuts in a small frying pan and then spread evenly over the salad.
Fry the lardons until crisp and brown and spread evenly over the salad.
Cut up a few white rolls or slices of white bread into chunks and then fry in olive oil until nicely and evenly browned. Spread the croutons over the salad.
Dress the salad with standard honey mustard dressing – recipe in heatherskitchen under dressings.