The fun part of this is trying to find your perfect burger 'bun' without resorting to a traditional bread solution. Cook our lovely burgers and serve them with an assortment of alternative 'holders'. Why not try some of the following and see which are a success in your household! You can serve some of these raw or lightly seared in a pan or under a grill.
Beef tomato slices
Lettuce wraps (we recommend Romaine or another similarly sturdy leaf)
Halved red peppers
Grilled sweet potato slices
BACOn chops with pesto colcannon
Boil some all-purpose potatoes until almost cooked and add in a quarter of a chopped savoy cabbage. When all cooked, drain and mash together with a large knob of butter and splash of milk until it's creamy. Mix in 2-3 good teaspoons of basil pesto.
Cook the bacon chops under the grill until they are crispy on the edges and the bacon is cooked all the way through.
Pile up the colcannon, top with bacon chops and drizzle with a little more pesto to taste. Add some fresh peas and you are done.
Take any clean, dry potato and slice down without actually touching the chopping board. Slice as thinly as you prefer or are able! Place the sliced potatoes in a baking dish and brush the outside with any type of oil or butter. Season generously with salt and pepper. Bake for around 30-40 mins at 375 degrees. Brush again with fat, making sure it goes between the slices and return to the oven. Just before you finish cooking (5-10 mins before) you can add herbs, flavourings, cheese, crumbled bacon, anything you like. The total bake time is around an hour but adjust according to the size of the potato and serve when crispy and browned.
SLOW COOKED BEEF CHILLI
Brown your stewing steak and transfer to a slow cooker. Brown and soften a chopped onion, add 3 cloves of crushed garlic, 1 tsp chilli flakes, 2 tsp ground cumin and 2 tsp of paprika. Stir well. Add tot he slow cooker with a large tin of chopped tomatoes, a can of ale, beef stock, a tin of kidney beans, chopped mixed peppers, 2 tsp pf dried mixed herbs, the all-important bay leaf and 1 tbsp of tomato puree. Mix together, cover and cook on low overnight or all day - around 7 hours. Once cooked, drain the liquid into a saucepan, reduce down so it thickens and return it to the chilli. Serve with garlic bread, sour cream, baked potatoes or rice and scatter with fresh green herbs for more colour.
STICKY HOISIN PORK FILLET
Coat the pork fillet in a mixture of grated ginger (2.5cm), 2 crushed garlic cloves, 3 tbsp hoisin sauce, 2 tbsp honey and 2 tbsp soy - coat all over and place in a baking dish. Marinate for as long as you like but for a minimum of 30 minutes. Fry in a pan for 5 mins, add any remaining marinade and a splash of water, cover with foil and transfer to the oven for 15 mins until it's cooked through. Serve sliced with a sprinkle of sesame seeds and finely chopped spring onion on top of a pile of hot, seasoned noodles and lightly steamed vegetables - sliced finely and mixed with the noodles works well.
MEXICAN MINCE ENCHILADAS
Make a chilli con carne mixture in the usual way to start this popular dinner time favourite. Fry off beef mince with chopped onion, garlic and finely sliced celery. Add beef stock, kidney beans, chilli powder and a large tin of tomatoes. Simmer until the liquid is reduced and packed full of flavour. Spread out 8 tortilla wraps and portion a line of the mixture down each one and fold at the top and bottom and roll to seal. Lie them in a baking dish, seam side down and top with plenty of grated cheese with optional chopped chilli and any available herbs. Bake for 10-15 minutes until the cheese is bubbling and coloured. Serve these with rice, salad and sour cream - delicious!
BURGERS, TASTY GRAVY AND MASH
Fry or grill the burgers and serve with a sumptuous gravy and buttery mash potato. It's absolutely and utterly comfort food at its best! For the gravy, make it as you prefer with the addition of finely sliced mushrooms, onions and peppers, plenty of seasoning and a dash of brown sauce or Worcestershire sauce. Make it nice and thick, reducing it on the stove until it's exactly the consistency you like. Pour over the burgers and mash to serve.
One dish spatchcock with winter veggies
Dry off the chicken and drizzle with olive oil and a sprinkling of salt, pepper and paprika. Chop a selection of root veggies into 1 inch thick cubed pieces (keep them a similar size) - we like leeks, celeriac, carrots, parsnips and onions. Add a few cloves of garlic (skin on). Place them in a roasting tin, drizzle in olive oil and add a selection of herbs (thyme and rosemary are nice). Add a cup of chicken or vegetable stock before placing the spatchcock chicken on top and roast for 20 minutes each side at 220/gas mark 7. When the chicken is cooked through, remove and allow to rest. Squeeze the garlic from the skins and add to the vegetable mix, discarding the skins. You can serve the veggies with the chicken, using the cooking juices to make gravy if you wish. A baked potato is nice with this or a sweet potato mash.
Szechuan style pork steaks
In a large saucepan, quickly fry off the pork steaks until brown on both sides. Add 1 clove of crushed garlic, 2 tbsp of dry sherry, 1 tbsp brown sugar and some chopped red chillis (to taste) - drizzle over the pork until almost cooked through. Combine 1 teaspoon of cornstarch and 1 tbsp of water and add the smooth mixture to the liquid to create a sauce and serve. These are lovely with a bed of noodles and a handful of stir fried, buttery, garlicky pak choi.
THE PERFECT STEAK SANDWICH
The most delicious, super speedy lunch or supper... take the minute steak, season with salt and pepper and fry quickly - just 30 seconds on each side. Serve in a crusty baguette or ciabatta with a handful of salad and you're done!
PITTA BREAD BURGER IDEAS
As an alternative to the traditional burger bun, why not try eating your burger in a warmed pitta bread? You can load it up with salad and toppings as you would a normal bun but the pitta creates a useful pocket where the flavours run together and taste delicious. Options for your pitta include: salads, cheese slices, dressings, mustard, onions, avocado, gherkins and bacon. This works really well with a butterflied chicken breast also. Perfect for barbecues. Make sure you have a napkin to hand!
CAJUN MINCE TRAYBAKE
Break up mince into small chunks and spread across a high side baking tray. Mix 2 tsp of oregano and 2 tsp of cumin with plenty of salt and pepper. Pour over, drizzle with olive oil and bake (220 degrees) for 5 mins. Then remove from oven and break up the mince completely. Reduce heat to 180 and top the mixture with a sliced red onion and green pepper. Add more oil, drizzle with tomato purée and mix well again. You may add a can of red kidney beans at this stage too if you'd like to. Bake for a further 5-10 minutes. Top with lime wedges, avocado slices, baby tomatoes and coriander. Serve in tortillas with sour cream.
[Photo courtesy of Taste]
The very best home-made chips
Peel some Maris Pipers and cut them into the shape and size you prefer. The key is to aim for a similar size so they cook evenly and at the same time. Fill a heavy based saucepan or deep frying pan with around 8cm of good oil - sunflower oil is ideal. Don't overcrowd your pan and cook in batches if necessary - gently introduce the potato pieces to the hot oil and allow to gently simmer until they turn a golden brown colour (it happens all of a sudden after a few minutes). Drain in kitchen roll and season well. Actual heaven!
light citrus coleslaw
Make up a bowl of finely shredded red and white cabbage, carrots and optional spring onions/shallots - according to your tastes. If you like parsley, add a generous handful of it, chopped.
For the dressing, mix up and pour over the zest and juice of one orange, the juice of two limes, 2 tbsp of olive oil, 1 tbsp of maple syrup and plenty of salt and pepper seasoning. Adjust any of the ingredient quantities as you prefer.
This will keep in a sealed container in the fridge for 3 days.
MEXICAN BEEF CASSEROLE
Chop and add 2 onions and 2 cloves of garlic to a heavy based pan/dish. After a few minutes add the diced beef, season and fry until evenly brown. Add 2 tbsp of pepper or chilli sauce, 2 tsp of chilli powder, some chopped red chilli (we recommend just one, deseeded) with a 400g tin of chopped tomatoes, 500ml of beef stock and 2 tbsp of tomato paste. Stir well over a medium high heat. Add some chopped red pepper, 2 tsp paprika, a pinch of dried oregano and a 400g tin of kidney beans. Stir and pop in the oven at gas mark 3 for 3 hours, check on it and top up with a little extra stock if necessary. Serve with rice or even add in some new potatoes and throw some grated cheese over it to serve.
TOAD IN THE HOLE
Put the sausages in a well-greased baking dish and put in the oven at gas mark 7. Whilst they are cooking, make a big jug of batter - either using a shop bought mix or make your own. A fool-proof method is to mix 200g plain flour with 1 tsp English mustard powder and season well. Make a well in the centre, crack in 4 eggs, then pour in some of the 400ml milk. Whisk well, adding the rest of the milk gradually and bringing in the flour until you have a smooth mixture. Bring the sausages out of the oven and pour over the batter mixture and return to cook until the batter is set and starting to turn golden brown - around 40 minutes. Cover with foil if it is browning too quickly. Serve with some delicious onion gravy and mashed potato and green beans. Alternatively just baked beans make a great accompaniment. Another option is to sink some 'on the vine tomatoes' in with the sausages in the batter mix at the time of cooking.
Irish beef stew
Brown off chunks of beef stewing steak in oil in a heavy based pan. Whilst it is frying, chop a couple of onions, 3 celery sticks and 4 big carrots into bite-size pieces. Set aside the browned meat and use the same pan for softening the vegetables for a few minutes. Season well and add the meat back to the pan. Mix it all together and cover with a litre of beef stock. Transfer the pan contents to a large oven-proof dish and top with sliced potatoes. Dot real butter over the potatoes, cover and cook for one hour at gas mark 6, removing the foil and cooking for a further 15 minutes until golden brown. A complete meal. You can also serve with mashed potato instead of the sliced potato topping - or include chunks of potato in the stew itself.
MARINATED BACON CHOPS
Marinate the bacon chops in 2 tbsp of good olive oil, the zest of one orange and its freshly squeezed juice. Add in a handful of mixed chopped herbs and leave for at least 2 hours. Bake the chops and marinade on a baking tray together with with bite size baby potatoes (drizzle in olive oil and dot pressed garlic over them for extra zing) for 35 mins. Cover just the bacon chops and remove this 10 minted before the end of cooking time. Fry shredded cabbage with some finely chopped onion, adding in a tbsp of soy sauce until cooked through - around 5 minutes in total.
creamy gnocchi with sausage
In a frying pan, add a diced onion, 2 cloves of crushed garlic, Italian seasoning (oregano is great if you don't have a mix) and salt and pepper. When it is softened, add sliced cooked sausages (2-3 per person is usually about right) and mix together. Add some gnocchi, packet or home-made, a tin of chopped tomatoes, 2-3 handfuls of spinach and a good, generous swirl of cream around the pan. After around 10 minutes, the gnocchi will be cooked and the spinach nicely wilted. Add a handful of mozzarella cheese to up the creaminess and serve with some fresh basil. A complete meal for the family, done! Kale is a good alternative to spinach if you prefer or leave out altogether and serve with a pile of garlicky green beans.
Chicken, mushroom & tarragon pasta
This is a real favourite and so easy! Set your pasta to cook separately whilst you make the rest of this dish.
Add a diced onion to a frying pan and cook gently in a little butter and oil mix until softened. Add in some finely sliced chicken and keep turning as it cooks through. Season well with plenty of tarragon, a little salt and pepper and add in a couple of crushed garlic cloves. It doesn't take long to cook so when it's 2-3 minutes off being ready, add in some sliced broccoli, sliced mushrooms (any sort work) and swirl in some cream. Bring back up to heat and mix together well. Serve with the drained pasta and a sprinkling of fresh tarragon to finish. You may need to add a little more seasoning to taste. Lovely with garlic bread.
CIDER AND HONEY PORK
Let the steaks come to room temperature before seasoning well with a light flour, salt and pepper mix. Sear well on one side until browned, then flip the steak over and cover the pan with a lid. This cooks it through and allows it stay nice and juicy. When cooked through, remove and allow to rest. Now is the time to add a slug of apple cider vinegar and a teaspoon of honey to the pan. Reduce down and add a knob of butter to make a lovely jus to pour over the steaks as you serve them. You could also slice the steaks and return them to the pan to coat them before serving.
BEEF MAC AND CHEESE POTS
For these, think lasagne flavour and you won't go far wrong. Crate a lovely Italian mince mixture by frying the mince, adding chopped onion, crushed garlic cloves and some Italian herbs. You can add the tomato flavour by adding chopped tinned tomatoes or a tomato sauce - your call. Spoon the mixture into individual sized pots and cover with a topping of macaroni cheese. Use ready made pasta and cheese sauce or you can make your own. Add a handful of panko breadcrumbs and a sprinkle of parmesan cheese to each bowl and oven bake for 20 minutes. Serve with salad or green beans.
MEATBALL AND CHICKPEA TRAYBAKE
Place the meatballs in a baking dish and add sliced red onion. Drizzle with olive oil and roast for 8-10 minutes at gas mark 7/200C. Add 250g of cooked, sliced beetroot and a 400g tin of chickpeas (don't forget to drain and rinse thoroughly). Roast for a further 12 minutes. Then create a zingy dressing by combining a handful of chopped mint leaves, a tub of natural yoghurt, a little horseradish sauce (to taste) and spoon over the meatballs. Serve inside large, warmed pitta bread with optional salad, meatballs sliced if you prefer. You can also serve these on taco wraps, rice or couscous.
Beef and Guinness pie
This is quick to prepare but needs a few hours to cook slowly. Cube and lightly flour the beef, frying gently all over to seal it. You can add a teaspoon of mustard powder and seasoning to the flour mix if you like. Place the meat in a casserole dish. Then fry off some chopped onions, carrots and celery for a few minutes and add those to the dish and mix with the meat. Pour over a mix of Guinness (500ml) and good beef stock (250 ml). Add 2 tbsp of redcurrant jelly, 2 bay leaves, mix well and cover. Cook for 2.5 hours on a low heat (around gas mark 3). Remove and allow to cool, removing the bay leaves at this stage. Stir in some herbs of your choice before topping with puff pastry or adding to a pastry lined pie dish. When you are ready to eat, make a small slit in the pastry lid and heat through for around 30 minutes or until golden brown (at around gas mark 7). Serve with some lovely potatoes and additional veg if required.
PARMESAN CRUSTED CHICKEN
Slice the chicken breasts in half horizontally and dip into a beaten egg with plenty of seasoning. You can add some crushed garlic to the egg mixture if you fancy. Cover the chicken breasts in grated parmesan. Pan fry on a med-high heat for just a few minutes each side (as you've sliced them in half they won't take very long). Don't overcook them, remove when the parmesan is golden brown. The cheese starts to stick to the chicken as it heats so don't be tempted to prod, poke and push around - just leave both ides to cook for around 3-4 mins each and add more parmesan on turning. Serve on a bed of melt in your mouth mediterranean veggies with rice or pasta ribbons with spirals of courgette.
Your oven needs to be set at gas mark 5 and you will need a lined loaf tin (baking parchment or greaseproof paper). Mix 2 tbsp of breadcrumbs and 2 tbsp of grated parmesan in a bowl. In a second bowl, add 500g minced beef, 1 finely chopped onion, a handful of chopped pancetta, 1 chopped/pressed garlic clove, 1 beaten egg and 1 tsp of tomato puree - mix together really well. Press the mixture into your loaf tin and top with the crunchy breadcrumb and cheese mixture. Bake for 45 minutes until the top is golden. Slice and serve with a selection of green veggies, an optional tomato sauce or some buttery mash. Perfect winter comfort food!
This is really easy to make and is a lovely, versatile accompaniment to our delicious burgers (and other meat of course). Heat 225ml cider vinegar, 125g caster sugar and 1 tsp salt in a pan. Add 3 tbsp of water to 3 tbsp cornflower to make a paste and whisk into the vinegar mix, adding water if necessary. Add half a peeled, diced and deseeded cucumber, 2 red chillies (deseeded and diced) and a small finely diced red onion. Simmer for a few minutes until thickened.
Then add a large tin of sweetcorn (frozen or fresh is equally good of course) and decant into jars. Leave it for at least a week before eating. You can store this in the cupboard for a few months but place in the fridge after opening.
EASY, SLOW-COOKED TOMATO SAUCE FOR MEATBALLS
A good tomato sauce is the basis for lots of dishes so mastering this will be a worthwhile investment of time! Heat 3 tbsp of top quality olive oil in a large saucepan, add 2-3 thinly sliced red onions and cook over a low heat until softened. After about 30 minutes, add in 2 large cloves of garlic, finely chopped and 2kg of peeled plum tomatoes. If you are not using chopped tomatoes, break them up in the pan. You can also add some fresh tomatoes if you prefer. Season with salt and pepper and cook on a low heat, stirring occasionally for around 1.5 hours. You'll know it's ready when it is thick and dark red. Finish with any herbs you like, depending on its final use. For meatballs and spaghetti we recommend oregano or an Italian herb mix.
SLOW COOKED SALT & CHILLI RIBS
These couldn't be easier, they just take a long time for the best results. Put them in a high sided baking tray, rub over with oil and seasoning and cook them really low for 2-3 hours, longer if you like. Make up a rub with oil, more seasoning, some crushed garlic and 1-2 fresh chillis (red and green looks great) with the seeds in or out depending on your heat tolerance! After the first cooking session, add this to the meat side of the ribs and return to the oven until the pork is cooked through and the meat falls off the bone easily when you try with a fork - it probably won't need more than 45mins. Some recommend deep frying the ribs at the end of this process so they're crispy - it's all down to your personal choice - personally I just want to get on with eating them!
SAVOURY SWEET POTATO FRIES
Peel and cut 2 large sweet potatoes into chip shapes. Toss in a bowl with a slug of olive oil (Just Oil's roasting oil is good), a tablespoon of finely chopped rosemary (leave out the woody stalks), a sprinkle of salt, pepper and (if you have it) some garlic salt. Bake in the oven at 220 degrees or gas mark 7 for about half an hour until they are crispy and delicious! Depending on your oven and the size of the chips you may need to cook them for slightly longer.
tangy tomato pork
Brown your pork chops in a large frying pan and transfer to a slow cooker. Layer on top sliced onion, sliced or chopped red pepper and mushrooms. Make a sauce by combining 1 tin of chopped tomatoes, 1 tbsp of brown sugar and 1 tbsp of balsamic vinegar, 2 teaspoons of Worcestershire sauce and pour over the vegetables and pork. Season well with salt and pepper and leave to cook for the day (6-8 hours) until completely tender. Serve with pasta ribbons or rice.
fresh spinach salad
Combine freshly washed spinach with any of the following ingredients to make a delicious salad that is perfect on its own or with juicy burgers as an alternative to more carb-heavy sides:
Spinach plus chopped walnuts, slices of apple, cubes of feta cheese, a sprinkling of pomegranate and a simple balsamic dressing.
This is almost easy! Toast a muffin so it's pretty well done and leave to cool so it doesn't go soggy! Poach an egg (don't forget we have farm fresh, free-range eggs), fry off the delicious bacon chops (or our sliced bacon) so the edges are nice and crispy, layer them on top of the buttered muffin and drizzle on Hollandaise sauce - THAT is the only thing you have to think about. You can, of course, buy a perfectly good fresh Hollandaise from a supermarket or you can make your own from scratch. Top with some fresh chives and serve!
Spanish style rice
Soften half a red pepper and whole onion (both chopped) in a tbsp oil in a medium hot pan. After 3-4 minutes, add 2 cups of rice and coat it in the oil, onions and peppers. Add some crushed garlic at this stage. Stir in 2 cups of delicious chicken broth, 1 cup of passata, the juice of half a lemon, 1 tsp of chilli powder, 1 tsp oregano and a tiny pinch of cumin. Season well. Bring to the boil, reduce to simmer, cover and leave until all liquid has been absorbed. Remove from the heat and fluff with a fork. Taste and season further if required. This is perfect with our spatchcock chicken.
Roast 2 tbsp of cumin seeds and 1 tbsp of coriander seeds in a dry frying pan, then grind in a pestle and mortar. Melt 50g butter with 2 chopped onions, 6 cloves and 4 whole peppercorns. Cook until the onion is well browned. Add in a tbsp of the first mixture and 1 tbsp of garam masala with 1 tsp of turmeric and mix together over the heat. Add a large tin of chopped tomatoes, crush 5 cloves of garlic and finely diced/minced ginger (about 1 inch) and add to the pan with 2 chopped chillis. Cook together for about 10 minutes. Add minced lamb and break up into the mixture. Add a cup or two of frozen peas. Cover and leave to simmer for 45 minutes until ready. Adjust seasoning and spices as preferred. Just serve with some simple white rice.
Make a traditional lasagne but replace the meat sauce with a mix of our beautiful meatballs in a tomato sauce. Start with a layer of tomato sauce, cover with a lasagne sheet, then another layer of tomato sauce, with meatballs and a generous layer of grated cheese. Repeat for another layer and finish with a final layer of pasta, cheese and a sprinkling of breadcrumbs for a crunchy topping,
Healthy beef tacos
Brown the beef mince in a frying pan. Add a finely grated carrot and half a courgette to the mince and mix well. Add some seasoning to suit your tastes - a combination of chilli powder, cayenne pepper, garlic or garlic powder, onion powder and ground cumin works well but use a ready mix if that's easier. Then provide some healthy options for everyone to pick from - avocado, chopped fresh tomato, grated cheese, shredded lettuce, finely sliced peppers, sweetcorn, fresh chilli, for example, and serve with warmed taco shells for everyone to build their own!
EASTER LAMB AND SAUTE POTATOES
Preheat your oven to 170 degrees. Place 2 halved onions and 1 halved garlic bulb into a roasting tray and place the lamb on top. Season well and pour in 330ml red wine and half a litre of lamb or vegetable stock. Tuck a few rosemary sprigs around the lamb and cook in the oven for two hours.
After the lamb is cooked, place it to one side with the onions and garlic to rest. Reduce the leftover liquid by half by simmering it and add a knob of butter (this is your sauce).
To sauté the potatoes, melt 100g butter in a pan and add peeled and cubed potatoes. When they are nicely coloured, add a finely sliced shallot and 2 crushed garlic cloves. Cook for a further two minutes and add a generous handful of parsley.
To serve, add the potatoes to a serving dish, top with the lamb, pull the baked onions apart and finish by scattering those across the top with the sauce drizzled over.
WHISKY GLAZED BURGER WITH BLUE CHEESE
In a large pan mix the following ingredients: water (1 cup), pineapple juice (1.5 cups), teriyaki sauce (half cup), soy sauce (2 tbsp) and brown sugar (2 cups). Bring to a gentle boil, reduce to simmer and then add lemon juice (quarter cup), diced white onion (quarter cup), Jack Daniels or other bourbon (quarter cup), garlic cloves (2, crushed) and cayenne pepper (half teaspoon): and stir. Keep the heat low and leave to reduce to a syrup over the next hour. Watch it doesn't get too hot or start to burn. Coat the burgers in the glaze and cook as usual, in the pan or on the barbecue. This is wonderful with blue cheese and crispy bacon. Stack and serve!
bacon chops with cabbage and apple
Do some prep by finely shredding a medium white cabbage, a large onion and cut 2 large apples into thick apple slices. Season the chops with some salt, pepper and thyme and lightly fry until browned on both sides. Set aside and add the onions and apple to the pan, soften and then add the cabbage. Add 50ml of red wine vinegar and a tablespoon of brown sugar - simmer until the cabbage starts to soften. Add the bacon chops into the mixture, cover and leave until they are cooked through (around 15 mins). Serve piping hot, lovely with buttery mash.
A dirty burger is exactly as it sounds - a delicious, fresh burger oozing with accompaniments that make it naughty but oh so good! Traditionally a dirty burger includes lots of cheese, bacon and pickles and is stacked high but you can do whatever makes you happy! Add some mayo and tomato ketchup and a little salad and you're all set. Don't forget the napkin.
melt in the middle cheesy meatballs
These are so simple and absolutely delicious! Mix 500g mince with 1 finely chopped or grated onion, lots of finely chopped herbs, 50g breadcrumbs and one beaten egg. Getting messy, make around 20-30 meatball shapes with your hands. Push a 1cm cube of mozzarella cheese inside each meatball and make sure it is well covered by the mince mixture. Fry them off until browned all over. Then transfer them to a tomato sauce mixture (tinned tomatoes, chopped onion, crushed garlic and herbs) and leave them to simmer gently for around 15 minutes so they are cooked through. Serve with the pasta of your choice.
SICILIAN SAUSAGE CAPONATA
Cook and slice your sausages (slicing them on the diagonal is nice and fancy). Put to one side while you make the caponata - an Italian veggie dish.
Chop an aubergine into mouth size pieces and gently fry for a few minutes. Set aside. Fry finely chopped carrots, celery, onion, peppers and garlic for about 8 minutes and then add in 70g tomato paste and the cooked aubergine, stirring it all together. Add third of a cup of red wine vinegar and simmer for 2 minutes. Add 400g tinned tomatoes, 2 tsp caster sugar and simmer for a further 15 minutes.
Add the chopped tomatoes right at the end to heat through and serve with croutons or toasted ciabatta and a nice glass of red!
Optionally marinade the meat overnight in red wine and seasoning. Strain the wine off if using (set aside) and heat your chunks of casserole beef in a slug of oil in a large frying pan. Remove the meat and add some of the wine to the pan to deglaze it and retain any of the cooking bits from its base. Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a casserole dish and fry off some cubes of carrot, onions and any other root veggies you like.Add 3 tbsp of plain flour and 1 tbsp of tomato purée. Add the beef, all juices, any remaining wine and a good handful of herbs (parsley is lovely). Stir, cover and transfer the oven. Bake for at least 2 hours until the meat falls apart. A final touch is to add some previously fried bacon lardons, mushrooms and shallots together with another handful of parsley. Serve with some rice, baked potato or roasties.
SUMMER NOODLE BROTH WITH SHREDDED CHICKEN
Make a soup using whatever lovely seasonal vegetables you have in stock (sweat off the chopped up veggies in a little butter for a few minutes, add vegetable or chicken stock and any root vegetables you are using - sweet potato or celeriac for example and simmer until all cooked through). Choose whether you prefer a strained clear broth or if you prefer to keep the veggies in. Next you add chopped or shredded cooked chicken to the soup and a handful of noodles per person (optional). Taste and season as required. Finish with a handful of watercress or fresh spinach as a garnish and serve - a healthy, complete meal.
LEBANESE LAMB FLATBREAD
You can use ready made flatbreads or make your own If you're feeling adventurous. For the lamb mix, heat 1 tbsp vegetable oil in a large pan, add 1 finely chopped shallot and 1 chopped garlic clove together with 1 tsp ground coriander, 1 tsp ground cumin and 1 tbsp of baharat (a Middle Eastern spice blend) and fry together for a couple of minutes. Add 500g lamb mince and mix it in to the mixture until browned. Add 75g sultanas and 300ml chicken stock, bring to the boil and reduce to simmer for 20 minutes. Spoon this mixture over piping hot flatbreads and drizzle with a little plain yoghurt and herbs - and, if you like, a few chopped chillies. [Photo: Delicious magazine]
GARLIC BUTTER SMASHED POTATOES
Boil some scrubbed salad potatoes, skin on, until they are soft. Make a garlic butter mix by gently melting 250g butter in a pan and adding garlic (3-4 cloves, crushed), some chopped parsley (a good handful) and plenty of seasoning. Add the potatoes and cover them in the mixture. Pour the entire bowl contents onto a baking tray (or two) and crush each potato until the skin splits with a heavy object such as a glass measuring jug. Roast for around 20-30 minutes until they are crispy and crunchy!
SAUSAGE AND THYME RAGU
Mix a tin of chopped tomatoes, 3-4 garlic cloves, a handful of chopped thyme, a tsp of dried chilli flakes and sausage meat in a baking dish. For the sausages, remove the casing and crumble into the dish. Add a cup of stock and a drizzle of oil. After 20 mins, stir in a tbsp of tomato puree and add a pack of cherry tomatoes to the top of the mince. Bake for another 10-15 minutes until the tomatoes are soft. Serve with pasta.
[Photo courtesy of Delicious]
Slice and fry off 4 aubergines. Remove from the pan and then fry a chopped onion and a couple of cloves of garlic. Add lamb mince and brown it. Then add in a tin of chopped tomatoes, a pinch of cumin and cinnamon and 200ml of white wine. Stir in a handful of fresh chopped mint with 200ml of stock (gradually). Layer the mince in a dish with a layer of aubergines in a few layers, finishing with aubergine. Pour over 200ml of white sauce (home-made or bought) and finish with a scattering of mature cheese. Bake in the oven for 25 minutes until golden brown. You've saved yourself hours!
HONEY GARLIC CHICKEN
Slice the chicken breasts along the narrowest part but leave them joined on one side so you have made a butterfly shape. Dust in flour, both sides, lightly season with salt and pepper. Pan fry and add a large knob of butter, a couple of crushed garlic pieces, 1 tbsp of vinegar, 1 tbsp of soy sauce and a generous glug of honey (about 2 tbsp). Simmer and turn the chicken over until cooked through - adding more butter for a silky shiny sauce - it'll take just a few minutes. Serve with rice and some fresh, green vegetables such as courgette or green beans. Drizzle any remaining sauce over everything. Finish with a sprinkle of sesame seeds if you like.
SMOKY MEATBALL PASTA BAKE
Cook the meatballs in the oven for about 15 minutes until browned. Meanwhile, cook and drain enough pasta for 2-4 people. In a mixing bowl combine 400g tinned tomatoes, 75ml beef stock or red wine, 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce, 1 tsp paprika. Take the meatballs out of the oven and, in the same baking dish, mix together with the pasta and smoky sauce. Cover in grated cheese and a cup of breadcrumbs for extra crunch and return to the oven for 10 minutes or until the cheese is bubbling and browning. A family favourite!
Pork steaks with GARLIC lemon butter
Sauté some chopped mushrooms and onions in a pan for about 5 minutes, add 2 cloves of crushed garlic and cook for another minute. Set aside. Add seasoned pork steaks to the same pan and cook for 2 minutes on both sides. Add the zest of a lemon across both steaks and a large spoonful of butter to each one. Cover and cook on a low heat for 8 minutes. Remove from the heat, allow to rest and squeeze lemon juice over the steaks and serve with the onions and mushrooms. Amazing with mashed potato as well!
Caramelised onion relish
Perfect with our burgers, this onion relish is easy to make. Just fry off 1.5kg of onions in a large, heavy-based saucepan. Cook them until softened but not brown. Stir in 3 tbsp of 300g of dark muscovado sugar and cook for 7-10 mins until it starts to colour. Add the rest of the sugar, 1/2 tsp salt together with 3 tbsp of balsamic vinegar, 3 garlic cloves, 1 tbsp wholegrain mustard, 1/2 tsp paprika, 1/2 tsp crushed chillis or chilli flakes. Simmer for 30-40 mins and stir occasionally to prevent it sticking to the bottom. Spoon into jars and it will keep, sealed, for up to a year.
ASIAN BEEF BOWLS
Brown the mince beef and then add some pressed garlic (4 cloves), ginger (chopped, fresh - around 1 tbsp) and spring onions (chopped) - cook for a few minutes. Add a tasty mix of hoisin sauce (6 tbsp), soy sauce (3 tbsp), tomato paste (1 tbsp), sesame oil (1 tsp), sugar (1 tsp) and chilli flakes (to taste - advise 1/2 tsp). Stir well and cook for a further few minutes. Spoon over bowls of rice and top with sesame seeds, cashews or spring onion - whatever you fancy!
HEARTY WINTER CASSEROLE
HONEY & MUSTARD PORK STEAKS
EASY STICKY HONEY SOY TURKEY
The trick with turkey is not to overcook it so we suggest you fry off strips of the meat until golden and then remove from the heat. Make the sticky glaze by mixing 2 cloves of crushed garlic and 2 tsp of grated ginger with a little oil in the same pan. Cook until softened and then add 3 tbsp of honey and 3 tbsp of soy sauce and stir together. Simmer gently so it reduces and thickens slightly. Return the turkey strips to the mixture, coat well and serve over noodles or rice with fresh greens.
This is a weekday shortcut. Simple place all the ingredients listed below into a casserole dish, toss with 1 tbsp of plain flour, add 425ml of red wine, stir well and cook for 3 hours in the middle of your oven on a low setting. Serve with fluffy mash potato (or celeriac mash) and enjoy with more red wine! Ingredients: diced beef, a handful of bacon lardons, 2 cloves of crushed or chopped garlic, mushrooms, peeled, whole shallots, 2 bay leaves and a few sprigs of rosemary. Carrots optional.
SPICY CHICKEN SKEWERS
Cut one chicken breast per person into bite-size chunks. Then place in a bowl of marinade made up of oil or plain yoghurt and a mix of spices (we have spice mixes in the shop). Cover with clingfilm and leave in the fridge for anywhere between 20 minutes and overnight. Next thread onto skewers, adding chicken with pieces of onion, cherry tomato and peppers. Drizzle with the marinade and grill, bake or barbecue for 10 mins or until the meat is cooked all the way through.
Delicious with a salad and rice or baked potato. Ideal for lunch or dinner. Enjoy!
CREAMY KALE & CHICKEN TRAYBAKE
Simmer 100g kale until tender, rinse, squeeze dry and stir in half a lemon's zest, 4 tbsp marscapone, 2 crushed garlic cloves and seasoning. Slit the chicken pieces longways and fill with the kale mixture. Then stretch 2-3 strips of streaky bacon around the chicken. Take a deep baking tray and scatter across it 2 red onions (cut into wedges), sliced courgettes, red and green peppers (sliced into large chunks), drizzle in oil and seasoning. Place the chicken pieces on top, cover in foil and bake for 25 mins. Remove the chicken, stir the veggies and cook for a further 10 minutes.
& MINCE BEEF HASH
Boil some cubed potatoes for 10 minutes, then remove from the water and drain. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large frying pan. Add 2 garlic cloves and 1 large chopped onion and fry gently until soft. Add the beef mince until it begins to brown. Remove from pan. Add the cubed potatoes to the pan with 2 tbsp of chopped rosemary and cook until the potatoes start to colour. Return the beef, season to taste and cook for another 5 minutes. Serve with roasted cherry tomatoes and a fried egg on top!
EASY BEEF STEW
Toss the diced beef in flour and fry off for 5 minutes until browned, set aside. To the pan, add 2 cloves of crushed garlic, a handful of peeled and chopped shallots, a couple of sticks of chopped celery and a bunch of fresh thyme (just use the leaves). Cook on a low heat until softened. Add the beef back in with 4 chopped ripe tomatoes and a large glass of red wine. Add 500ml of beef stock, 2 bay leaves and a splash of Worcestershire sauce. Season well and cook in the oven on a low-medium heat for 3-4 hours until tender. Serve with some buttery mash potato!