Saturday, 27 April 2013


This is what my friend Mary-Ann would call Deja-Food.  I never like the idea of wasting food but having the same meal twice in a week isn't something I always look forward to, but, if you dress it up as something different, well it's not the same, is it?

This was born from having chilli and rice and some tortilla chips on the side.  I used the left over chilli to fill a pastry case then topped it with the remaining tortilla chips and finished with grated cheese.

If you don't have left overs I've added the recipe I used in my children's cookery classes for a mild chilli which you can of course adjust the spice on to your own taste.  Alternatively fill the pastry with a couple of tins of mixed chilli beans available in most supermarkets.

1 tbsp Oil
1 Onion chopped
1 Clove Garlic crushed
400g Minced Beef
2 tsp Ground Coriander
1 tsp Smoked Paprika
2tsp Chilli Powder
400g Tin Chopped Tomatoes
400g Tin Kidney Beans
Small Bunch Fresh Coriander

250g Shortcrust Pastry
100g Tortilla Chips
50g Cheese grated

Use the pastry to line a deep 9" loose bottom flan tin, cover with parchment and baking beans and bake blind at 180C for 15 minutes.  Remove the beans and parchment and bake for a further 5-8 minutes to finish it off.

Make the chilli by frying the onion in the oil.  When they become translucent add the garlic and cook for a further 2 minutes, be careful not to burn the garlic.  Now add the minced beef and spices and cook till the meat is browned. Next stir in the tomatoes and kidney beans and cook till it's bubbling.  Leave to simmer for 10 minutes on a low heat then finish by stirring in the fresh coriander.

Pour the chilli into the cooked pastry shell and cover with the tortilla chips.  Sprinkle on the cheese and pop back in the oven for a few minutes till the cheese melts.  serve with a blob of sour cream.

Sunday, 7 April 2013


Apple pie and custard is such a classic that I'm not sure I should really be messing with it, however, I might just get away with this as I'm really just adding the custard early.  This is a one crust pie, the base and top are one piece of pastry which is then filled with the apples and custard then baked.  I wouldn't normally use a cake tin for a one crust pie but because of the custard it's best to be on the safe side.

I did have my concerns with the amount of liquid in this and had the voices of Mary & Paul ringing in my ears like a mantra...'soggy bottom, soggy bottom', but be confident, it does work, it will set and the pastry will be crisp.

The only issue really is whether to have it with even more custard or cream or as I did, ice cream, Oh joy!

200g Plain Flour
100g Butter

4-5 Cooking Apples
1 Lg Tbsp Corn Flour
220g Granulated Sugar
2 Eggs
150 ml Milk plus extra for glaze
1 tbsp Demerara Sugar

Make the pastry by rubbing the butter into the flour then add enough water to form into a dough.  On a floured surface, roll out the pastry into a disc approximately 14" across.  Use the pastry to line an 8" loose bottom cake tin leaving an extra couple over inches overhanging.

Now mix the custard.  In a bowl combine the corn flour and sugar, next beat in the eggs then gradually whisk in the milk.

Lastly prepare you apples.  Peel each apple then cut into quarters, remove the core then cut each quarter into 3 chunks.  Fill the pastry shell with the apples before you pour the custard mixture over the top.

Now bring the excess pastry over the top of the filling leaving an exposed middle.  Brush the top of the pastry with a little milk and sprinkle on the demerara sugar to cover the apples and pastry.

Bake at 180C / 160C fan for 50-60 minutes till the pie is golden and the custard has set. Leave in the tin to cool before removing.

As an alternative to apples, try rhubarb  x

Monday, 1 April 2013


Win a Months supply of Green Vale Farm Fresh Potatoes and a Jamie Oliver Roasting Dish to cook them in.

I have tried potatoes that promote themselves as 'All Rounders' in the past and have been very disappointed but Green Vale Farm Fresh did not let me down.  They really are the perfect spud for rich velvety mash, fluffy crisp roasties, beautiful bronze chips, buttery jackets or just boiled and sprinkled with sea salt and a drizzle of olive oil - believe me, I've tried them all.

Green Vale Farm Fresh are grown in the UK and use the versatile 'Jelly' variety of potato which has a rich yellow colour and a creamy buttery taste.  They are sold in 100% recyclable paper sacks that not only look good, they keep your potatoes fresher for longer.   The sacks also have recipes, interesting potato facts and details of the farm that loved and lifted your potatoes.

You can buy Green Vale Farm Fresh potatoes from Tesco and Booths Supermarkets

And don't forget that along with the months supply of potatoes, you could also win the beautiful Jamie Oliver Stoneware Roasting Dish, perfect for dauphinois, roasties or mash topped pies.


I couldn't let the opportunity of having these lovely spuds go by without sharing a recipe.  You may think a cake is a bit left field but I find that using root vegetables as a substitute for flour in gluten free cakes gives a much tastier result which everyone loves and nobody believes it's gluten free.

150g Butter
200g Sugar
350g Cold Mashed Potato
200g Ground Almonds
2 tsp Gluten Free Baking Powder
Zest 1 Orange
3 Eggs

Juice 1 Orange
75g Sugar

Beat the butter and sugar together then mix in the mashed potato.  When it's all combined, add the ground almonds, baking powder, orange zest and eggs and mix well.

Pour the mix into a 23cm lined tin or a lined 2lb loaf tin.  Bake for 35-45 minutes till golden and a skewer comes out clean.

While the cake is cooking, heat the orange juice with the sugar till the sugar has dissolved then leave to cool.

Once the cake has cooked, prick the surface with a toothpick then spoon over the orange syrup and leave to cool.  I have decorated mine with dark chocolate and chopped pistachios.   


To Enter the draw simply tell me your favourite jacket potato filling.  Enter here on the blog or through Twitter and Face Book.

You have a week to enter and the winner will be drawn and notified on Sunday 7th April