Category Archives: cookbook of the month

Super Veggie Cottage Pie

Super Veggie Cottage Pie

This is a delicious twist on a classic oven-baked comfort dish. It’s packed full of nutritional goodness from numerous tasty veggies, beans, quinoa and lentils, and contains no meat at all. I’ve served this to many a meat eater who didn’t miss, or even notice, the lack of meat at all! It may appearto be a lengthy list of ingredients but they are all wonderfully good for you, and the method is nice and simple, so don’t be put off.

Time taken 1½ hours / Serves 6

2 tbsp sunflower or rapeseed (canola) oil
1 large leek, finely chopped
2 carrots, grated
2 sticks celery, finely chopped
2 sprigs fresh rosemary
1 bay leaf
100g/3½ oz chestnut mushrooms, diced
3 tbsp tomato purée
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce (vegetarian if necessary)
1 x 400g/14 oz tin chopped tomatoes
500ml/17 fl oz/2 cups vegetable stock
200ml/7 fl oz/scant 1 cup red wine (or extra stock of preferred)
150g/5½ oz dried green lentils
150g/5½ oz quinoa
1 x 400g/14 oz tin haricot or cannellini beans, drained
flaked sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the topping
1.4kg/2 lb 4 oz mixed root vegetables (potatoes, parsnip and sweet potatoes – the quantity of each is up to you)
40g/1½ oz butter, plus extra for baking
3 tbsp milk

Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan/350°F/gas 4.

Heat the oil in a large saucepan and gently cook the leeks, carrot, celery, rosemary and bay leaf for 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms and continue to cook for a further 5 minutes or until all the vegetables are tender.

Stir in the tomato purée, Worcestershire sauce, chopped tomatoes, stock and wine. Bring to a simmer and stir in the lentils, quinoa and beans. Stir well and return to a simmer. Cover with a lid and cook for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Meanwhile, cut the root vegetables into chunks, removing the tough core from the parsnip and cutting the potatoes slightly smaller than the other vegetables (they usually take a little longer to cook than the others). Place in a pan of boiling water and cook for about 10–15 minutes until tender. Drain and mash with the butter and milk and season with salt and pepper.

Place the pie filling in an ovenproof dish or individual dishes, top with the mash and dot some extra butter on top. Bake for 25–30 minutes until the tops are lightly golden and bubbling at the edges. If you are cooking from chilled, add a further 10 minutes to the cooking time.

Vegan/dairy-free: simply use a dairy-free butter and milk for the topping and make sure the Worcestershire sauce is vegan friendly.
Flavour swap: ring the changes and add a warmth of Moroccan spice to either the Super Veggie Cottage Pie or the classic lamb version. Omit the Worcestershire sauce and rosemary and replace with 1 teaspoon smoked paprika, 1 teaspoon ground cumin, ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon and 75g/2¾ oz raisins to the filling.

For more delicious and family-friendly recipes, buy the cookbook here.














Salmon and Vegetable Biryani

Salmon and Vegetable Biryani with Cucumber and Mint Yoghurt

This is a perfectly balanced meal, all cooked together in super-quick time, for the whole family to enjoy. It’s not too spicy, if you choose a mild curry paste, and it’s gluten- and dairy-free.

Brown or white cooked rice can be used, and for a time-saving hack, use the pre-cooked packs.

Time taken 30 minutes / Serves 4

300g/10½ oz combined weight of broccoli and cauliflower, cut into bite-size florets
2 tbsp sunflower or groundnut oil
1 large onion, finely sliced
400g/14 oz skinless salmon fillet, cut into 2cm/¾ inch chunks
4 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tsp grated ginger
3 tbsp curry paste
1 tsp ground turmeric
handful sultanas
500g/1 lb 2 oz cooked basmati rice, brown or white (pre-packaged is perfect)
juice ½ large lemon
25g/1 oz toasted flaked coconut or almonds
flaked sea salt

For the yoghurt
6 tbsp natural yoghurt
3 tbsp chopped mint
¼ cucumber, seeds removed and finely chopped
Steam or lightly boil the broccoli and cauliflower until just tender.
Meanwhile, mix together the yoghurt, mint and cucumber.
Season with a pinch of salt and set aside.

Heat the oil in a large frying pan and sauté the onion for 8 minutes until soft and becoming golden.

Add the chunks of salmon, garlic, ginger, curry paste, turmeric, sultanas and 4 tablespoons water. Toss around in the pan for about 2 minutes before adding the cooked rice and steamed vegetables. Gently stir around in the pan until the salmon is just cooked through and the rice is piping hot.

Stir in the lemon juice and season with a pinch of salt. Scatter with coconut or almonds and serve with the cucumber and mint yoghurt.

Vegetarian: diced paneer, halloumi or tofu all work very well when added to the pan. Fry until they take on some colour first, adding to the pan just before the 4 tablespoons water.

Flavour swap: smoked mackerel, hot-smoked salmon or trout are delicious alternatives to fresh salmon. Flake into the pan when you add the lemon juice and toss around to heat through.

Meat-lovers: if you’ve any leftover roast chicken, turkey or lamb from your weekend roast, use in place of the salmon.


For more amazing, flexible family recipes, buy your own copy here