Tuna steak Nicoise

image

My children won’t eat ‘leaves’ so this salad is great because it doesn’t contain any and is ready in the same amount of time it takes to boil some new potatoes.

Start by getting your new potatoes boiling, 2-3 per person should be plenty meanwhile hard boil some eggs, one per person should be ok, and steam some green beans.  While all these are on the go, quarter some baby tomatoes and slice up some avocado.

Next season and lightly brush your tuna steaks with olive oil. (To keep the cost down I use the frozen tuna steak portions and defrost them the night before.) Put a griddle on a high heat then pan fry your steaks for 3-4 minutes each side.

By this point all the other components should be ready so just arrange on a plate and drizzle with olive oil and lemon juice.

Prawn Mushroom fried rice

image

Make some rice up (4 person serving) as per packet instructions but add 1/2 cup of frozen peas to the grains prior to cooking as to cook the rice and the peas at the same time.

Meanwhile fry up half a sliced onion along with 3 large sliced mushrooms in a large frying pan. When the onions are browned and the mushrooms cooked, whisk up 3 eggs in a bowl and season. Set aside.

When the rice is ready add a little oil to the pan with the onions and mushrooms in and turn the heat up. Add the rice and peas into the pan and fry for a couple of minutes whilst stirring. Next make a well in the rice and pour in the beaten egg mixture. Leave for approximately a minute so that half of the egg is cooked, mix the rest of the egg in to rice mix along with some prawns and stir fry for another couple of minutes.

Serve

 

Pesto crusted Salmon

image

This is one of first ‘fishy’ dishes I was able to get my husband to eat – when we first met he didn’t eat any fish – and my children like this too, I think the crunchy crust makes its more palatable to those who aren’t into fish so it’s worth giving it a go if you have any family members who don’t like fish.

Preheat the oven to 180fan, toast 2 slices of bread and then blitz in a processor to make breadcrumbs. Into the breadcrumbs, mix 2 teaspoons of grated parmesan and 2 teaspoons of pesto.

Srunch a handful of the breadcrumb mix into your palm in order to compact the mixture, then pat it down on to your salmon fillet, make sure the length of the fillet is covered in the breadcrumbs and repeat with your remaining fillets – there should be enough mixture to bread 4 fillets.

Pop into the oven and cook for 20-25 minutes depending on the thickness of your fillets

Serve with some lemon and coriander couscous and roasted Mediterranean vegetables

Beer Batter Fish Goujons, wedges & peas

image

This is a slightly healthier alternative to chippy fish and chips because of the potato wedges, well that’s what I keep telling myself!

Get the potato wedges on first as they will take the longest. Heat the oven to 190fan and chop up a couple of large potatoes into wedges, season with salt, pepper and olive oil then pop in the oven. Depending on how thick  you’ve made the wedges these will take between 35-45 minutes.

Next make the batter. Weigh out 100g of plain flour in to a jug and add a teaspoon of baking powder and a pinch of salt. Give it mix then pour in 150ml of beer and whisk until you have a smooth batter. Refrigerate until 10 minutes before the wedges are cooked.

When you’re ready to start cooking your fish pour some oil into a frying pan so that it’s approx 2cm deep and turn the hob on to a medium to high temperature.  Cut some cod fillets into strips then when the oil is up to temperature dip a strip into the batter then lower gently in to the oil, cook for a couple of minutes on each side, then remove from the pan. Ensure that the fish is cooked inside and the batter is golden and crispy, you don’t want the oil too hot so that it burns the batter before it cooks the fish so adjust the heat accordingly – this is why I always try one goujon first. When you have the temperature correct, get your peas on then finish frying the rest of the goujons.

Serve everything hot!

Ginger Chilli Lime Salmon

image

You can adjust the amount of chilli in this dish to suit your taste but it’s worth leaving just a hint of chilli to offset the taste of the lime. This meal is ready in 15 minutes and is a great last minute dish to throw together if you don’t know what to cook

First marinate the salmon in some olive oil, dried chilli flakes, grated ginger – about the size of half a thumb, some lime juice and the zest of a lime if you’re using a fresh one. Leave that to marinate for 5 minutes while you steam some vegetables and boil some egg noodles.

If you have a George grill, use this to grill the salmon as it can be ready in 5 minutes this way otherwise pan fry it on a medium heat on 5 minutes each side until it’s cooked. Once the noodles are cooked, stir fry them in some groundnut oil and soy sauce then serve with the steamed veg and salmon

 

 

Garlic Prawn Linguine

image

Prior to having kids I used to make this dish with lots of chilli, but I’ve taken the chilli out and it still tastes delicious. The good thing is that it’s ready in the same time it takes to cook your pasta too!

First get your linguine cooking according to packet instructions

For the sauce, add a large glug of olive oil in to a large frying pan, next add some chopped parsley (fresh if you have it, otherwise dried is fine)  and 2 cloves of crushed garlic. Heat in the pan on a medium heat for 2-3 minutes, try not to let the garlic brown. Next add approx 250ml of white wine and turn the heat up to the max to bring to the boil. Once boiling turn the heat down slightly to a medium high heat and allow the sauce to simmer to allow the alcohol burn off. Next add approx 150ml of passata and 8-10 quartered cherry tomatoes. Allow the sauce to simmer for another 5 minutes until the pasta is a minute away from being ready. Now add 250g of raw shelled prawns to the sauce and stir in, cook for a minute until the prawns are pink and ready, try not to over cook the prawns. They shouldn’t need more than 2 minutes. When the pasta is ready, strain and add to the frying pan, mix everything in and cook for a further 30 seconds, plate up and serve with a little parsley on top

Spinach pasta with Lemon Sea Bass

image

This is a delicious yet simple pasta sauce which provides a great way of getting some spinach in to your kids!

For the pasta sauce

Wilt a bag of fresh spinach in a large saucepan over a medium heat and once done stir in a knob of butter and saute for a couple of minutes. Next add one tablespoon of milk, one tablespoon of cream cheese and a liberal sprinkling of parmesan cheese. Give everything a good stir until the cheese has melted and then take off the hob and whizz in a food processor. Pour over some cooked pasta and add some toasted pine nuts. Done!

For the Sea Bass

Heat a glug of oil in a frying pan over a medium to high heat. Once at temperature place the sea bass skin side down and cook for 2-3 minutes. Whilst it’s cooking season and grate some lemon rind and squeeze some lemon juice over the top. Turn over and cook on the other side for 1-2 minutes or until cooked. Serve hot

Lemon and coriander Tuna steak

image

You can’t get much simpler than this tuna steak!

Marinate some tuna steaks in olive oil, lemon juice and coriander – naturally these ingredients would take better when bought fresh but for an everyday cost effective way of fish I use frozen tuna steak thawed out the night before, lemon juice from a bottle and coriander paste. Season to your taste.

Once marinated, flash fry the steaks for a couple of minutes on each side and serve immediately.

I served mine with rice salad which is a great way of using up left of rice from the night before. To this rice simply add a glug of olive oil, salt, pepper, bbq seasoning, lime juice, any kind of store cupboard tinned beans, (pinto, kidney or mixed bean salad etc) and then dice up any salad vegetables you have to hand, again I used peppers, tomatoes, sweetcorn and cucumber. Give it a good stir and voila 

Link up your recipe of the week

Tuna Pasta Bake

 

image

This should be called ‘whatever you’ve got’ pasta bake as you can substitute most of the ‘filling’ ingredients for things that you’ve got, prefer or need to use up.

Start by cooking your pasta according to the instructions on the packet but make sure it’s not over cooked.

Meanwhile make a basic bechamel sauce, I use a large knob of butter approx 25gm and melt this in a sauce pan, then add a tbsp of plain flour, remove from the heat and mix until it forms a gloopy paste, put back on a medium heat and add approx a pint of milk a little at a time until the sauce thickens, then season. This is now your basic white sauce. 

To my sauce I added cheddar and brie but you can put any cheese you like and then season.

Next, steam some veg, I used leeks, broccoli and swetcorn  and add this to the sauce along with a tin on tuna and give it a good stir. 

When your pasta is done, drain and place in an oven proof dish and stir the sauce through it. Grate some cheese on top if you like and bake in the oven for 20min at 180 fan oven

Enjoy.

Try substituting the tuna for salmon or ham! Whatever takes your fancy, there are no rules!