Cottage Pie

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Sometimes only a pie will do! This one takes longer than my usual recipes but it’s worth it!

First dice a large onion and place in a cast iron saucepan, sweat over a medium heat until softened. Add a clove of garlic and fry for a further couple of minutes. Meanwhile dice two carrots and steam in the microwave for a couple of minutes to soften. Turn the heat up on the pan and add 500g of mince beef and the diced carrots, heat until the meat is browned. Next add 2 tablespoons of flour and mix in to the meat then add 200ml of beef stock, 125ml of white wine and season with salt and pepper. Bring to the boil then place in a fan oven 180degree for 20 minutes while you prepare the mash potato topping

For the topping peel, quarter and boil approx 3 large potatoes, set aside 2 quarters pieces of potatoe and mash the rest with a little butter and seasoning. Remove the pie from the oven then spread the topping over the meat and finally grate over the two quarter pieces of potato which you set aside earlier. This will give the pie a nice crunchy topping. Put back in the oven and cook for a further 20 minutes then grill for a further 5 minutes to brown the top. Serve with some greens x

Peri Peri Chicken with Lemony Mixed Mash

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I’m not sure if using a shop bought marinade is considered cheating but I don’t think I care if it makes the job easier – which it does!

To allow the chicken to cook quicker and allow the marinade to get into the chicken meat I like to cut 2-3 slashes in to the  chicken drummers prior to rubbing the nandos marinade and nandos dry rub in to the chicken. (I used both for extra flavour)

Place the marinated chicken in a roasting tin and roast in the oven for 30 minutes at 190fan or until chicken is cooked.

Get some corn on the cob cooking

I also like to serve this with a mixed potato mash. For this quarter one sweet potato and one ordinary potato and place in a bowl with half a lemon and a table spoon of water. Cover in clingfilm and cook/ steam in the microwave for approx  8 minutes until the potatoes are cooked. When done, remove the lemon, squeeze out any excess juice in to the bowl and roughly crush and mix the potatoes with a fork, leave the skin on and season with salt, pepper and a little bit of coriander (paste) and I like to crumble some feta over the top too. Yum!

Beer Batter Fish Goujons, wedges & peas

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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!