Thursday, 28 August 2008

Spicy Baked Meatballs


  • 400ml left over spicy tomato soup

  • 2 courgettes, thinly sliced (half a cm)

  • 6 small potatoes (or 3 large), thinly sliced (half a cm)

  • 3 red onions, halved and thinly sliced

  • 100g cheddar cheese, grated

  • 1 bag Swedish balls (or about 16 small meatballs)

  • a handful of chopped coriander

  • 20g butter


  1. Preheat oven to 160 degrees.

  2. Place the potatoes over the bottom of a large, deep ovenproof dish.

  3. Layer onion on top of the potatoes in the dish.

  4. Place thin slices of the butter all over on top of the onions.

  5. Place the sliced courgettes on top of the butter and sprinkle with salt.

  6. Place meatballs on top of courgettes.

  7. Pour/spread the soup over the meatballs. If it's just come out of the fridge it will be thick so you might need a knife or spoon to be able to spread it so it covers all the meatballs and courgettes underneath.

  8. Sprinkle cheese over the top.

  9. Bake in oven for 40 to 50 minutes, until the cheese on top is nicely brown and you can see the soup bubbling away.

Serves 2 hungry people or 4 if served with rice or pasta.

Wednesday, 27 August 2008

Kidney Bean and Sweetcorn Quesadilla with Spicy Tomato Soup



  • 2 small tins sweetcorn, drained

  • 2 tins kidney beans, drained

  • 2 tbsp. lemon juice

  • 1 tbsp cumin

  • 1 chili, finely chopped

  • handful of coriander


  • 4 small onions, finely chopped

  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped

  • 3 tbsp. oil

  • 2 chillies, finely sliced

  • 2 tbsp. ground cumin

  • 2 tins of chopped tomato

  • 1 liter of tomato juice

  • 2 stock cubes

  • 4 tbsp. corn flour

  • 450ml water


  • 9 tortillas

  • 400g grated cheese (cheddar or similar)

  • 4 tbsp. oil



Best made the night before to allow the flavors to blend, but it's fine to make it on the day.

  1. Mix all the ingredients in a bowl.

  2. Refrigerated. Yes, it's that simple.


  1. Add the oil, chillies, garlic and onion to a pan and sweat on a low heat with a lid on the pan.

  2. After 5 minutes (or the onions have gone soft) add all the other ingredients.

  3. Stir well and wait for it to start to simmer (will take 10 minutes or so).

  4. Simmer for at least 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes to make sure it doesn't stick..


  1. If you don't have 4 frying pans (and who does?) pre-heat the oven to 120 degrees to keep the quesadilla warm while cooking the other ones.

  2. Heat a frying pan on a medium heat and add a fifth of the oil.

  3. Place a tortilla face down and fry, turning every few minutes until it's brown on both sides.

  4. Slice this tortilla into thin strips to use as croutons on the soup.

  5. Now to make the quesadillas. Place a tortilla in the pan and spread 3 to 4 tablespoons of the salsa on it.

  6. Sprinkle a quarter of the cheese over the top and place another tortilla on top of the cheese.

  7. Fry the first side of the quesadilla for 10 minutes or until golden brown on the bottom side.

  8. Turn the quesadilla by placing a plate over the frying pan, turning both together so the quesadilla ends up on the plate and then slide it back into the frying pan (possibly with the help of a fish slice).

  9. Fry for a further 10 minutes or until golden brown on the bottom again.

  10. Place in oven on a heat proof dish and repeat the above steps until you have 4 quesadilla.

  11. Slice the quesadilla into quarters, serve on a plate with a bowl of the soup with the 'croutons' placed on top of the soup.

Serves 4 people with some soup left over (see here for what to do with it).

Friday, 22 August 2008

Kale Burgers


  • 4 or 5 large potatoes or 10 small potatoes, washed and then coarsely grated

  • 3 celery sticks, thinly sliced

  • 18 kale leaves, thinly sliced perpendicular to stalk

  • 1 tbsp. thyme (fresh or dried)

  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped

  • 120g grated strong cheddar

  • 3 eggs

  • 6 tbsp. plain flour

  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Place grated potato, celery, kale, thyme, garlic and cheese in a large bowl and mix well.

  2. Stir in half the flour and mix well.

  3. Stir in the 3 eggs and again mix well.

  4. Stir in the remaining flour and salt and pepper.

  5. Heat frying pan with olive oil in to a high heat.

  6. Shape mixture into burgers by pressing together in a circular pastry cutter or in your hands. You should make between 6 and 8 burgers, depending on how large you want them.

  7. Place burgers in frying pan and reduce head to medium.

  8. Turn every 4 minutes until golden brown on both sides.

  9. Check burgers are cooked all the way through by pressing down hard on the back of them with a fish slice. No runny egg mixture should ooze out; if it does then cook burgers more.

  10. Serve inside a bap with relish, mayonnaise, cheese, bacon, sliced tomato, sliced onion, gerkins or anything else that you think makes a burger.

Serves 6-8 people. Preparation time about 20 minutes, cooking time about 20 minutes.

Sunday, 17 August 2008

Spicy Butternut Squash Pie


  • 2 Butternut Squash

  • 2 Rolls of pre-rolled puff-pastry

  • 2 Onions

  • 3 Sticks of celery

  • 1 Packet of Cajun spices (or a mix of a teaspoon each of cayenne pepper, mustard seeds, turmeric, paprika and 2 cloves ground)

  • 5g of Butter

  • 2 tablespoons corn flour.


  1. Pre-heat oven to 220 degrees Celsius (200 for fan oven).

  2. Cut onion finely and fry in a large frying pan with the butter.

  3. Finely slice the celery and add it to the onion and fry together for 5 minutes or until soft.

  4. Cut up the butternut squash into cubes of half an inch, scooping out and throwing away the seeds and peeling the outer skin off with a knife.

  5. Add butternut squash and cajun spice mix to the frying pan.

  6. Fry for 10 minutes, stiring every few minutes.

  7. Add 200ml of boiling water.

  8. Simmer for 15 minutes.

  9. While this is simmering grease a pie tin and line it with one of the sheets of pastry.

  10. Place pie tin in oven for 10 to 15 minutes.

  11. Remove pie tin from oven.

  12. Stir corn flour into butternut squash mix.

  13. Pour butternut squash mix into pie dish.

  14. Cover pie dish with remaining sheet of pastry, sealing edges by pressing down.

  15. Paint top of pie with milk and make two knife holes to let steam out.

  16. Place pie in oven for 20 to 25 minutes until top is golden brown.

Serve with a leafy side salad.

Serves 4.