Ratatouille

This is better made the day before eating to allow all the flavours to deepen and combine. Photos courtesy of the P5s at West Barns Primary School, who enjoyed making this as part of their Plenty Project week. Serves 4 Ingredients 2 aubergines, chopped into 2cm pieces 4 courgettes, chopped into 2cm pieces 4 peppers,…

Vegetable and lentil loaded Bolognaise sauce

This sauce has so many uses: on its own with bread mixed through spaghetti or other pasta (choose wholemeal if you can) top with mashed potato for a cottage pie turn it into a lasagne top with savoury crumble spoon over rice (again, brown is better) add kidney beans and chilli powder for a quick…

Quick creamy mushroom and olive pasta

Very close to a stroganoff, but even slightly quicker. I challenge you to miss meat while eating this savoury, comforting dinner. Serves 4, generously Ingredients 500g mushrooms, sliced 4 tablespoons olives, well rinsed and roughly chopped 2 teaspoons thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried thyme 2 tablespoons chopped parsley 1 teaspoon paprika 150ml double cream or…

Cheap, quick and simple vegetarian courgette lasagne

  Much quicker than the usual bechamel/white sauce version, this is a good week-night lasagne. Flavour comes from the garlicky, herby tomato sauce and the cheeses; it’s a rich but healthy dinner which is popular with children and a handy fallback for a meat-free night. To make this more seasonal in the winter months, try…

Learn to Cook: apple crumble

Serves 6 Ingredients 800g apples (about 5) of any variety about 60g brown sugar: demerara, soft brown or golden caster are all fine (use less sugar if your apples are already sweet) juice of 1/2 lemon For the crumble: 350g plain flour 100g brown sugar 250g cold butter To finish: 1 tablespoon brown sugar 2 tablespoons…

Sweet potato and chickpea burgers with halloumi

This is an incredibly cheap, quick, healthy and satisfying meal (don’t scrimp on the cheese). In these hastily executed dinner photos I decided to add the halloumi to the side salad – this was a mistake. It’s much better in the burger. The burgers would also be a great kid’s or weaning meal, and freeze…

Smoked mackerel pate

This is always a popular starter or light lunch. Pate is something that most people don’t think of making themselves, but as you can see it’s insanely easy. Don’t let it intimidate you: start with these measurements, then taste it – if you want more capers in there, put them in. More of a horseradish kick?…

Chickpea and broad bean falafel

Falafel is a star food: cheap, healthy, easy to make and good for snacks, a starter, finger food for babies, a quick lunch or as part of a salad for dinner. Goes excellently with tzatziki of course: de-seed and grate cucumber, squeeze out the water, then mix with plain yoghurt, a little crushed garlic, a squeeze…