recipes

  • This is a pretty easy and very satisfying pasta dish. It’s nice to move away from a tomato based sauce and accompany pasta with some green veg. Some would disapprove of parmesan with a fish-based sauce, but because the anchovies are not really visible, and because it tastes so good, a generous sprinkling of finely grated parmesan is a must.

  • In this recipe the delicate crust really compliments the soft scallops and the gentle flavourings really lift it. It’s best to get quite big scallops so that they don’t overcook before the crust becomes golden and crispy. Serve this with a minted pea puree to add yet another texture and burst of freshness.

  • Spring is well and truly here and lamb is perfectly in season. When it’s lovely and warm outside you don’t necessarily want a full on roast, so use your lamb to make some griddled skewers and serve with couscous to make a lovely and fresh dish.

  • A simnel cake normally follows a recipe similar to traditional fruitcake recipe with dried fruits and brown sugar. This version uses a sponge recipe that makes for a much lighter cake that everyone will enjoy. Finish off with a nice buttercream centre and a sugar frosting, then decorate with the obligatory mini eggs and, if you want to go all...

  • I first saw pasta with herbs rolled into it in a restaurant and thought it was a fantastic way of both infusing pasta with flavour and making it look stunning. To showcase the extra effort that you’ve put into it, you want to make sure that you can see the lovely herbs within the pasta in the finished dish. That said, don’t hide the pasta under...

  • This is a really easy starter that is a little bit different. Slice the beetroot, prepare the goats cheese stuffing and make the rocket pesto in advance to make it stress free when you come to serving. If you’re not keen on chestnuts, experiment with other ingredients, lightly toasted pine nuts would work really well. Just pick something that...

  • There’s nothing better than having a freshly baked cake ready for teatime at the weekend. With any luck there’ll be some left over to take into work on Monday as well. Coffee and walnut cake is a true classic and this recipe comes straight from my mother’s kitchen, making it all the more authentic.

  • This is France’s answer to the pizza. It makes a perfect drinks snack and is also good served as an alterative to garlic bread with pasta. The sweetness of the onions and the saltiness of the anchovies come together to make a very tasty bite. You can experiment with the toppings, olives would also work really well, as would a bit of cheese.

  • There is a huge amount of flavour packed into this recipe with every element really playing its part. If you’re not usually keen on one of the ingredients, maybe capers or anchovies, don’t be put off. In the end there isn’t one taste that comes through, it’s the combination that really makes it.

  • It is quite easy to buy good crumpets, but there’s something very homely about making them yourself. Everyone’s mouth will be watering when the smell of a baked bread fills your house. Don’t be worried about leaving them in the pan for a long time, the top needs to completely dry out before you flip them over.

  • How often do you find a half empty packet of rocket or a handful of just-past-its-best parsley in the back of your fridge? This is the best way to not let it go to waste. Rocket pesto has a great peppery bite that will add a bit of excitement to lots of meals. It’s particularly good with a beetroot and goats cheese salad, but it’s probably at...

  • Chorizo adds flare wherever it’s used. Its unctuous red colour spreads through an entire dish and its flavour packs a punch. In this stew it really shows off. The piquant paprika is balanced beautifully by the sweet tomatoes and the textures of the chickpeas and little cubes of chorizo make for a really satisfying dish. Cod is the perfect...

  • A delicious healthy alternative to fried spring rolls. These little parcels are light and fresh, and go fantastically with a bit of sweet chili dipping sauce. If you have small bamboo steamers, put four in each and serve in the steamers. You’ll be surprised how quickly they cook, so make sure you don’t over-do them.

  • Beetroot and horseradish is a classic combination that sits perfectly with salmon. The colours are vibrant, almost festive looking as a tribute to Christmas past. To stick to your healthy New Year's resolutions, use low fat creme fraiche, remove the skin from the salmon and only use a tiny bit of oil on the rocket.

  • This is a fantastic breakfast as it contains oats that provide you with sustainable, slow-release energy that will keep you feeling full until lunch-time. It also has at least a portion of fruit in it so will help you to achieve your five-a-day. Experiment with combinations so that you don’t get bored of the same thing each morning, crushed...

  • This warming soup gets a great kick from the addition of ginger. Make up a big batch and take some into work in a thermos for a cheap, delicious and healthy lunch. It also makes a great, light starter; just add a dollop of crème fraiche and some finely chopped parsley to the bowl to glam it up a bit.

  • This recipe gets a fresh kick from the tomatoes and is low in fat as it’s baked rather that fried so is a great option to help with your January health kick. Make sure you get lean ham, a thick slice from behind the deli counter will mean that you can cut out any fat and add nice chunks to the dish. If you’re really watching the fat content,...

  • Doing mini British classics as canapés may be a little hackneyed, but these bite-sized toad in the holes not only look great, but always go down a treat. They are very easy to make, all you need is a good non-stick canapé/mini muffin pan. I used a silicone one which made it incredibly easy to remove the little Yorkshire puddings once cooked and...

  • This is a festively red, spiced chutney that goes perfectly with all your Christmas leftovers, from cold turkey and ham, to the remnants of your cheeseboard. I can’t take credit for this recipe, it’s a Nigella creation. I use more ginger than is recommended in the original recipe as I think it adds a good Christmassy kick, but add as much or as...

  • This is officially my Christmas drink for this year. Sipsmith themselves recommended this combination when I visited their stall at Taste of Christmas. It's festively pink and the champagne adds a sense of celebration. Sipsmith's sloe gin is subtle and packed full of flavour. Just to add to its benefits, it's made right here in London, it's...