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Tasty Recipes for the Whole Family

Easy Peasy Chicken & Mushroom Pie


1 x tin of Campbells condensed mushroom soup
Four chicken breasts
1 punnet of mushrooms (you can use any type which ever your family like best)
1 x packet of ready made puff pastry
1 x clove of garlic

1. Pre heat oven to 180ºC/350ºF/gas mark 4
2. Peel and crush your garlic clove, chop two table spoons full of fresh parsley
3. Cut the chicken breasts into strips
4. Put a table spoon of olive oil in a saucepan and gently fry the garlic and parsley until it starts to colour, add the chicken breast and fry for 5 minutes.
5. While the chicken is frying, clean and chop your mushrooms. If you are using button mushrooms you could either leave them whole or slice them in half
6. Add the mushrooms to the chicken
7. Add the soup to the chicken, fill a third of the empty can with milk and also add that to the chicken and mushroom filling. Once the pie filling has come to the boil take off heat.
8. Roll out your pastry using plain flour.
9. Put pie filling in pie dish and cover with pastry. Make holes in pastry using a fork. 10. Brush pastry with either milk or an egg.
11. Place in oven and cook until pastry is nicely browned, about 20-30 minutes.
12. Serve with new potatoes and peas.


The Quickest Pasta in Town

400g penne (or other tube shape) pasta
250g pack chestnut or button mushrooms, wiped clean
2 x cloves garlic
8 rashers streaky bacon cut into bite size pieces
1 x egg
100g hard cheese grated

1. Boil pasta according to packet instructions
2. Fry crushed garlic, bacon and mushrooms until golden
3. Drain pasta and return to pan
4. Add bacon mixture to pasta
5. Crack egg into pasta and mix well
6. Add grated cheese to pasta and mix well
7. Serve immediately


Be adventurous – Simple Paella

Paella is easy and you can tailor it to suit your family’s taste. This one uses both chicken and fish you could use either or just substitute for more veg and vegetable stock. Use a large frying pan. Keep an eye on the rice once you start adding the stock, you calculate 21/2 cups of stock for each cup of rice, depending on which type of rice you use you may need less or more, taste rice towards the end of cooking for firmness, the rice should be slightly al dente, ideally you would like a small amount of liquid still left in the pan so when you cover it with the tea towel the rice will absorb it and finish cooking.


1 x small onion diced
1 x clove of garlic chopped small
1 x table spoon of parsley chopped s
1 x red pepper
4-6 chicken thighs
50 gms frozen peas
Small tin of chopped toms
Mixture of mussels, squid, scallops, prawns
2 cups of long grain rice
Chicken stock – 21/2 cups per cup of rice
Pinch of saffron


1. Dice your onion and red pepper, chop garlic and parsley. If chicken is on the bone or thighs are large chop in half.
2. Heat a small amount of oil in a large frying pan over medium heat fry onion and pepper for 3-4 mins
3. Add garlic and parsley fry for another 2-3 minutes.
4. Add chicken and fry until golden and cooked through
5. Add tin of tomatoes
6. Add peas and fish and fry for a further 4 mins.
7. Add rice, mix well then add 2 cups of chicken stock, simmer until enough room to add more stock. Add saffron and season to taste.
8. Taste rice for firmness, when cooked remove from hob and cover frying pan with a clean tea towel for 10 mins.
9. Serve and enjoy!


Easy Peasy Lasagna

For the meat sauce:
1lb of mince beef
1 x onion
3-4 cloves fresh garlic
400g tin of chopped tomatoes
1 tsp of basil
1 tbl of oregano

For the white sauce:
1oz plain flour
25 grms butter
¾ pint of milk

9 strips of uncooked Lasagne pasta
A generous helping of grated cheese


1. Pre-heat oven to 350°F (180°C, Gas Mark 4).
2. Chop the onion and garlic and brown off in a frying pan. Then add the mince beef and brown.
3. Add the tomatoes and stir.
4. Add the Orgeano and Basil and season. Simmer for 30 mins
5. Put milk, 1 bay leaf and half onion in saucepan and bring to the boil. Take off the hob and leave to infuse for 10-15 mins.
6. Melt the butter in a sauce pan, add flour to make a paste. Cook for 1 min.
7. Remove saucepan with flour mixture from the hob. Sieve milk into pouring jug then pour a couple of ladles full at a time into flour mixture and stir well with wooden spoon making a smooth and creamy sauce, keep adding the milk slowly.
8. Once all milk added bring saucepan back to hob and bring it to the boil stirring constantly, then remove pan form heat.
8. Now layer the ingredients, starting with the meat sauce, then white sauce then a layer of pasta, do this three times and end with white sauce if you have any left and a layer of grated cheese on the very top.
9. Put it in the oven to cook for about 45 mins or until nice and brown on top.

Serve with garlic bread and salad.


Tuna Pasta Bake

Penne Pasta
1 x tin of campbells condensed mushroom soup
1 x tin of tuna
220ml Milk
Sweetcorn (optional)
Cheese for grating


1. Boil pasta
2. Add soup and milk
3. Drain tuna add to pasta, mix well
4. Put pasta mixture in baking tray
5. Grate cheese over
6. Bake until golden

Voila! Delicious


White bean and chorizo stew

This hearty stew is quick and easy to make


200 g chorizo sausages, halved lengthways and sliced
1 large onion, peeled and chopped
225 g celery, chopped (optional)
300 g carrots, chopped
2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp chilli powder (optional, depending on how spicy your chorzo is and if you like a bit of a kick)
1/2 tsp ground cumin
2 x 400 g canned chopped tomatoes
2 x 400g cans of cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
Small pinch of sugar
Crusty bread, to serve


1. Fry the chorizo in a large pan until turns golden and has released its spicy oil.
2. Add the chopped onion, celery and carrot to the oil in the pan and fry gently for 3-4 minutes. Add the garlic, paprika, chilli powder (if used) and cumin and fry for a further minute. Add the chopped tomatoes and sugar, and season with a little salt and black pepper.
3. Stir well and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
4. Add in the beans and simmer for a further 5 minutes.
5. Serve with crusty bread.


Bangers and mash

Rich onion gravy transforms this family favourite into a meal fit for a king


For the onion gravy

1 tbsp olive oil
25 g butter
4 onions, sliced
1 tsp leaves of thyme
125 ml red wine (optional, add more stock if omitting)
400 ml chicken stock
1 bay leaf
salt and freshly ground pepper

For the mash

1 kg floury potatoes, King Edwards or Maris Piper are good
100 ml milk
75 g butter
1 grate of nutmeg
salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the sausages

8 meaty pork sausages
1 drizzle olive oil


1. First make the gravy. Heat the olive oil and butter in a saucepan and soften the onions and thyme over a very gentle heat. It’s best to cook them, without colouring, for about 10-15 minutes. Give the onions a good stir now and again.
2. Remove the lid, turn up the heat and continue frying the onions until they turn a deep russet brown. Add the wine and bubble until it has almost evaporated. Pour in the stock and add the bay leaf. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper.
3. Simmer, uncovered for about 15 minutes, until thickened. Leave on one side.
4. Fry/Grill/Roast sausages
5. While the sauce and sausages are cooking, start with the mash. Peel, half (or quarter) the potatoes and transfer to a deep saucepan filled with lightly salted water. Boil until the potatoes are tender.
6. Drain in a colander and return to the pan. Shake the potatoes over a very low heat for a few seconds until they have dried out. Crush with a potato masher.
7. Heat the milk with the butter, nutmeg and seasoning and gradually add most of it into the potatoes, beating well between each addition. Check the consistency by adding more hot milk if needed.
8. Warm the gravy and serve with the sausages and mash.


Banana Bread (Great for using up over-ripe bananas that nobody wants to eat!)

100g butter
250g brown sugar
1 egg
3 ripe bananas
350g self-raising flour
½ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp nutmeg
100ml milk
1 tsp vanilla essence

1. Preheat oven to 180ºC/350ºF/gas mark 4
2. Peel bananas and mash them using a fork
3. Beat butter and sugar together add egg and beat for approx 1 minute
4. Add mashed bananas to butter mixture and mix well together
5. Fold in flour, cinnamon and nutmeg
6. Add milk and vanilla essence and stir well together
7. Rub butter into a 900g loaf tin
8. Spoon banana mixture into loaf tin and bake in oven for 1 hour


Plum Crumble

2 punnets of plums
4-5 tbsp of brown sugar
75g butter chilled and cubed
175g plain flour
A pinch of salt
50g caster sugar

1. Preheat oven to 180ºC/350ºF/gas mark 4
2. Cut plums in half take out stone and place in bowl. If the plums are large quarter them
3. Toss the plums in the brown sugar and place them in a medium oven proof dish
4. Using your finger tips rub the butter into the flour until it resembles bread crumbs
5. Stir in the sugar
6. Lightly scatter the crumble over your plums and bake in oven for 40-45 minutes


Poached Plums

2 x punnets of plums
200g honey
Cinnamon stick

1. Cut plums in half and take out the stones
2. Put them into a pan with all other ingredients and bring to the boil
3. Simmer gently until soft
4. Serve with custard


The most lush bread & butter pudding!

300g ready made Brioche
50g of raisins or sultanas
200ml Milk
200ml Double Cream
2 Egg Yolks and 1 whole egg


Slice brioche, soften butter and butter one side if you like, halve slices and arrange them in a lightly buttered baking dish baking
Beat the yolks, egg and sugar in a large bowl until foamy. Whisk in the cream and milk.
Pour custard over brioche press down to allow bread to absorb liquid, leave to rest for 30 mins
Place baking dish in a roasting pan and pour in boiling water to reach half way up the sides. Put in oven and bake for 30-45 mins



Simple to prepare, James Martin's unusual but deliciously sticky parkin makes a supremely satisfying snack


oil, for greasing
225 g self-raising flour
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 egg, lightly beaten
115 g caster sugar
60 g butter
115 g golden syrup
225 ml milk, milk


1. Preheat the oven to 150°C/gas 2.
2. Grease a 25 x 18cm cake tin and line with greased greaseproof paper.
3. Sift the flour, ginger and bicarbonate of soda into a bowl. Stir in the egg and then the caster sugar, mixing well.
4. In a small saucepan, melt the butter and the golden syrup, stirring to mix. Remove from the heat and stir in the milk.
5. Gradually stir the milk mixture into the flour and egg mixture. Stir until smooth, then pour into the prepared tin.
6. Bake for about 1 hour or until the mixture starts to shrink away from the sides of the tin.
7. Remove from the oven and turn out onto a wire rack to cool.
8. Cut into squares and serve, preferably after about 3 to 4 days when the parkin will have become nice and sticky.