Broccoli, Cauliflower and Pasta Bake!

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This dish came about completely out of necessity and I am so delighted with it, that I might actually plan to make it again and shop for the ingredients next time.  As always you can swap and change the vegetable element to your heart’s content.

I put recipes on here in the hope that my daughter, who is at university, might be inspired and have a go. It has worked on occasion. This is a perfect one for you to try Ms Glade X.

It can be made in advance and popped into the oven whenever your ready!

 

Ingredients

1 head of Broccoli cut into spears

1 head of Cauliflower cut into florets

500g Pasta cooked in accordance to the instructions of the packet

2 sliced of Bread cut into breadcrumbs

50g Extra Mature Cheese grated

White Sauce

50g Butter

50g Plain Flour

900ml Milk

Freshly Grated Nutmeg

Method

1. Cook the Cauliflower and Broccoli in a steamer or boil until al dente.

2. Add the cooked vegetables and cooked pasta to a large oven proof dish.

3. To make the white sauce, add all the ingredients together in one pan.

4. Put the pan on a medium heat and stir continually until it boils and thickens.

5. Pour the white sauce over the top of the vegetable mixture in the dish.

6. Sprinkle the breadcrumbs and cheese on top of the dish.

7. Cook in an oven preheated to 200 degrees for about 30 minutes until the top is browned and crispy.

8. Serve with garlic bread and salad.

Enjoy!

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Have a lovely day!

 

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Picnic Food – Cheese and Onion Pasties!

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Now given that I am always going on about picnics, I thought I would share with you the sort of food I sometimes make for a picnic.

Himself and the youngest both take sandwiches for lunch each day, so at the weekends I like add a bit of variation to their diet if possible. These pasties are ideal for picnics and are very filling.

You can also vary the fillings, I added ham to himself’s and made it a different shape so I knew which was which 😉.

I am not really sure what has happened to this photograph, the pasty looks burned but it wasn’t.  I have included the recipe for pastry but of course you could buy it ready made.

Ingredients

Pastry

225g plain flour

100g butter

Pinch of salt

Approximately 30ml cold water

Or a packet of ready made pastry

1 egg mixed with 1 tablespoon of milk to make an egg wash

Filling

1 glug of olive oil

1 white onion

1 sprig of thyme (optional)

Pinch of white pepper

150g  cheddar cheese grated (I used 50g smoked cheddar because I had some left over)

Ham (optional – quantity to your taste)

Method

1. Make the pastry first by either popping all the dry ingredients in a food processor.

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2. Pulse until the mix resembles breadcrumbs.

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3. Then add the water a little at a time until it comes together.

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4. Place it in cling film in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. Don’t miss this stage out because it will be much easier to work with if chilled.

5. While it’s chilling, you can prepare the filling. Sauté the onions, adding thyme if using and white pepper,  until they go translucent but then carry on until the liquid around them has dried up. Leave to cool.

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6. Pre heat the oven to 220 degrees.

7. After 30 minutes, assemble the pasties by rolling out the pastry. I use a cereal bowl to cut out the circles.

8. Add onion, cheese and ham (if using ) to one side of the circle.

9. Use the egg wash around the outside of the circle, then fold the pastry over to make a half circle. Use a fork to press around the matching edges to seal the pasty and cover the outside with the egg wash.

10. Repeat until all the ingredients are used up and bake for about 20 minutes until browned.

Enjoy!

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Have a lovely day!

 

Pasta Arrabiata!

 

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This is one of my favourite pasta sauces to order when we are out. Everywhere seems to have a different spin on it. I like to add whatever vegetables I have around, this time I had some spinach and it made a lovely addition.

Served with garlic bread, it’s a quick and simple, but satisfying dinner!

 

Ingredients

Glug of Olive oil

2 white onions finely chopped

1 tin of chopped tomatoes

200ml vegetable stock

1 teaspoon crushed chilli

1 handful of Spinach

1 packet penne packet cooked to al dente as per packet instructions

Grated cheese to serve

Method

1. Sauté the onions in the olive oil until translucent

2. Add the tomatoes and vegetable stock

3. Add the crushed chilli to taste but no more than 1 teaspoon

4. Add the spinach and reduce the heat to a simmer

5. Simmer for about 15 minutes, meanwhile cook the pasta

6.  When the sauce is reduced add the cooked pasta, mix and serve with grated cheese

 

Enjoy!

 

Have a lovely day!

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Spinach and Cream Cheese Lasagna – slow cooker style!

 

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We had picnic plans for Saturday so, on Good Friday I thought I would try to make a lasagna in the slow cooker, so it would be ready for when we got home on Saturday evening.

I have seen various recipes on the internet but ricotta isn’t terribly popular in this house, so I thought I would just wing it. Thankfully, it turned out well!

You literally just build the lasagna and let the slow cooker do the work – perfect!

 

Ingredients 

Olive oil to grease the inside of the slow cooker pot

I  bottle of tomato pasta sauce or passata – I made my own*

450g approximately of spinach – washed

400g cream cheese

1 teaspoon freshly grated  nutmeg

500g dried sheets of lasagna sheets – you may not use them all

100g mature cheddar cheese or mozzarella

Method

1. Grease the inside of your slow cooker dish – you will thank me afterwards!

2. Place a thin layer of  the tomato pasta sauce on the bottom of the dish

3. Add a generous layer of spinach and add random spoonfuls of cream cheese to the layer

4. Add about a 1/4 teaspoon of freshly grated nutmeg to sprinkled over the spinach and cover with pasta sheets, don’t worry about overlapping, it doesn’t matter

5.  Repeat until you have used up all the ingredients, finish with a layer of pasta and sprinkle the grated cheddar or mozzarella on top

6. Place in the slow cooker and cook on low for about 4 hours, serve with garlic bread and salad

 

Enjoy!

 

* To make tomato pasta sauce:

Ingredients

1 tablespoon of olive oil

1 onion

1 clove of garlic – crushed

1 tin of chopped tomatoes

250g vegetable stock

1 teaspoon of oregano

1 teaspoon Basil

1/2 teaspoon sugar

Method

1. Soften the onion and garlic in the olive oil for a couple of minutes

2. Add tin of chopped tomatoes, stock, herbs and sugar

3. Simmer for about 5 – 10 minutes until it reduces slightly

4. Taste to check for seasoning

Enjoy!

 

 

Crustless Quiche

 

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A couple of weeks ago, I mentioned that I was going to try to recreate a pie that myself and Miss Glade had enjoyed on Mother’s Day.

This is my version, a Crustless Quiche. It is actually a bit of a staple in this house but this is the first time that I have added broccoli, it’s another of those versatile dishes that you can make with any seasonal vegetables.

I think it is best served piping hot with new, buttered potatoes and a crisp salad. Oh! a bit like the one in the picture.

Delicious and as always, minimal effort!

 

Ingredients

1 tablespoon of olive oil

1 chopped onion

1 head of broccoli prepared into spears

I red pepper cut into chunks

4 eggs beaten

100mls milk

200g  grated strong mature cheddar

1 teaspoon of chives

Method

1. Pre heat the over to 160 degrees.

2.  Heat the olive oil and sweat the onions until they are quite dry.

3. Add the broccoli and keep it moving so it doesn’t catch the bottom of the pan.

4. Add the red pepper and keep all the vegetables moving for about 5 minutes.

5. Add the beaten eggs, milk and chives to the pan and sprinkle on the cheese.

6. Transfer to an oven proof dish and bake in the oven for 30-35 minutes until the top is browned and the liquid has been absorbed.

7. Serve immediately.

 

Enjoy!

 

 

Have a lovely day!

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Lentil and Mozzarella bake!

 

 

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Is it very obvious that this is a “I have not been food shopping yet, so let me see what is in the cupboard” bake?

I used mozzarella this time but will probably use mature cheddar next time, because that is what I usually have in the fridge. So basically use what you have and don’t let the list of ingredients put you off, just substitute away!

Ingredients

1 glug of olive oil

2 small onions or 1 large one

2 sweet potatoes

1 large white potato or 2 small ones

2 large or 3 medium carrots

handful of frozen peas

handful of frozen sweetcorn

150g of red lentils

1 teaspoon of dried Italian herbs

1 teaspoon dried basil

1 can of tinned tomatoes

1 tablespoon of tomato puree

1 litre of vegetable stock

250g grated mozzarella

4 slices of bread made into bread crumbs

Method

1.Saute the onions in the glug of olive oil until translucent

2. Add the potatoes, carrots, sweetcorn, peas, lentils and herbs to the onion mixture and saute for five minutes

3. Add the tomatoes, tomato puree and vegetable stock to the pan and bring it all to the boil

4. Pre heat the oven to 180c

5. Simmer the contents of the pan for about 20 minutes

6. Transfer to an oblong casserole dish and add the bread crumbs and cheese

7. Pop in into the oven for about 20 – 25 minutes

8. Enjoy!