FRUGAL FOOD
Yellow pea Dahl - perfect for using up storecupboard ingredients. You basically need twice the volume of the peas in water or stock. I used value veg stock because I had some. The rest is spicing, fat and frills. I used Clover because I had some in the fridge that was reduced to 30p. 1 tablespoon for each cup of dried peas. I used 2 cups of dried peas, 2 tablespoons of Clover and 4 cups of stock. The frills were simply a clove of garlic and a chopped onion plus a chopped celery stalk because it was the last one and very limp. I fried these with the spices and the Clover, then added it to the simmering peas. The spices I used were 2 teaspoons of cumin seeds, half a teaspoon of chilli powder, half a teaspoon of cinnamon, salt, pepper and two cloves. 
You could use curry powder if that’s what you have. The chilli isn’t necessary but we like it. It takes about 25 minutes to cook to a thick, rich, starchy meal that sits and holds it’s shape on your spoon but still has some peas visible to bite.

Yellow pea Dahl - perfect for using up storecupboard ingredients. You basically need twice the volume of the peas in water or stock. I used value veg stock because I had some. The rest is spicing, fat and frills. I used Clover because I had some in the fridge that was reduced to 30p. 1 tablespoon for each cup of dried peas. I used 2 cups of dried peas, 2 tablespoons of Clover and 4 cups of stock. The frills were simply a clove of garlic and a chopped onion plus a chopped celery stalk because it was the last one and very limp. I fried these with the spices and the Clover, then added it to the simmering peas. The spices I used were 2 teaspoons of cumin seeds, half a teaspoon of chilli powder, half a teaspoon of cinnamon, salt, pepper and two cloves.
You could use curry powder if that’s what you have. The chilli isn’t necessary but we like it. It takes about 25 minutes to cook to a thick, rich, starchy meal that sits and holds it’s shape on your spoon but still has some peas visible to bite.

Using up fridge contents ready to move. This was a soup of butternut squash, fried in olive oil with chopped onion and celery, then simmered in value veg stock cubes made up with water and then blended with the hand blender after half an hour of cooling. It was seasoned with chilli flakes, salt and black pepper. I had some reduced 20p cream in the fridge so I used a swirl of that but it doesn’t really need it.

Using up fridge contents ready to move. This was a soup of butternut squash, fried in olive oil with chopped onion and celery, then simmered in value veg stock cubes made up with water and then blended with the hand blender after half an hour of cooling. It was seasoned with chilli flakes, salt and black pepper. I had some reduced 20p cream in the fridge so I used a swirl of that but it doesn’t really need it.

Chicks liver pate and toast from chicken livers lurking in the freezer.

Chicks liver pate and toast from chicken livers lurking in the freezer.

These were sea bass caught by family over the summer and frozen. They were stuffed with embarrassingly shrivelled lemons, fennel and celery and a little parsley from the garden to make pretty much a free meal. Plus the fridge and freezer are one step clearer to defrosting!

These were sea bass caught by family over the summer and frozen. They were stuffed with embarrassingly shrivelled lemons, fennel and celery and a little parsley from the garden to make pretty much a free meal. Plus the fridge and freezer are one step clearer to defrosting!

Making red onion marmalade, in preparation for the big move. 2kgthinly sliced red onions, cooked for 40 minutes with 150g melted butter, 2tsp salt & 300g golden caster sugar. Add 750ml red wine 4tbsp Balsamic8tbsp red wine vinegar. Cook 40mins & jar up.

Making red onion marmalade, in preparation for the big move. 2kgthinly sliced red onions, cooked for 40 minutes with 150g melted butter, 2tsp salt & 300g golden caster sugar. Add 750ml red wine 4tbsp Balsamic8tbsp red wine vinegar. Cook 40mins & jar up.

Cottage cheese and spring onion scones

Makes 8
Heat oven to 200 degrees
Line a baking tray with greaseproof paper

2 cups gluten free self raising flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 cup cottage cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
4 thinly sliced spring onions
1/2 cup soya milk
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tbsp of freshly ground black pepper or a teaspoon of paprika. You could add some dried fennel or oregano if you don’t have spring onions.
Obviously you can substitute wheat flour and dairy milk but this is what I had handy in the fridge before going away for a few days. If you use wheat flour, cut back the milk by 1/4 cup as gluten free flour needs more moisture.

Mix all ingredients in a bowl and gently bring together into a dough without overworking it. Pat into a disc on your lined baking sheet, score into 8 and bake for 20 minutes until it sounds hollow when tapped on the base.
We served ours filled with bacon rashers but it’s also good toasted or with ham/soup

Cottage cheese and spring onion scones

Makes 8
Heat oven to 200 degrees
Line a baking tray with greaseproof paper

2 cups gluten free self raising flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 cup cottage cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
4 thinly sliced spring onions
1/2 cup soya milk
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tbsp of freshly ground black pepper or a teaspoon of paprika. You could add some dried fennel or oregano if you don’t have spring onions.
Obviously you can substitute wheat flour and dairy milk but this is what I had handy in the fridge before going away for a few days. If you use wheat flour, cut back the milk by 1/4 cup as gluten free flour needs more moisture.

Mix all ingredients in a bowl and gently bring together into a dough without overworking it. Pat into a disc on your lined baking sheet, score into 8 and bake for 20 minutes until it sounds hollow when tapped on the base.
We served ours filled with bacon rashers but it’s also good toasted or with ham/soup

Spinach ice cream muffins

This is part using up what was in the fridge before going away for a few days (and moving house soon!) and part development of that banana ice cream I make with frozen bananas.
Taking a quick look in the fridge, I found a few withering strawberries, some baby spinach, a couple of eggs and half a carton of soya milk along with most of a carton of cottage cheese and some Parmesan (all three of which I will use next). The cupboards brought forth some honey, milled linseeds (Aldi), gluten free self raising flour and cinnamon plus a little coconut oil and carotino oil, plus I found three frozen bananas lurking in the bottom drawer of the freezer.
I blended the three bananas with one and a half packed cups of spinach and 8 small strawberries. I also added to the blender the egg, a heaped tablespoon of coconut oil and two sploshes of carotino oil but about 1\4 cup of any oil would be the combined equivalent. I added a pinch of salt and a tablespoon of honey plus half a teaspoon of cinnamon. It was well blitzed to a liquid.
In a mixing bowl, I put a cup of self raising gluten free white flour from Dove’s Farm and 2 flat tablespoons of milled linseeds (chopped nuts would be good instead or just leave them out).
I poured the green ice cream over the flour and mixed in, putting it into 12 cupcake cases with a ladle.
They took 20mins to bake at 180.
They need to cool in their cases or they stick!
The flavour is mild and not too sweet, not too healthy tasting!

Spinach ice cream muffins

This is part using up what was in the fridge before going away for a few days (and moving house soon!) and part development of that banana ice cream I make with frozen bananas.
Taking a quick look in the fridge, I found a few withering strawberries, some baby spinach, a couple of eggs and half a carton of soya milk along with most of a carton of cottage cheese and some Parmesan (all three of which I will use next). The cupboards brought forth some honey, milled linseeds (Aldi), gluten free self raising flour and cinnamon plus a little coconut oil and carotino oil, plus I found three frozen bananas lurking in the bottom drawer of the freezer.
I blended the three bananas with one and a half packed cups of spinach and 8 small strawberries. I also added to the blender the egg, a heaped tablespoon of coconut oil and two sploshes of carotino oil but about 1\4 cup of any oil would be the combined equivalent. I added a pinch of salt and a tablespoon of honey plus half a teaspoon of cinnamon. It was well blitzed to a liquid.
In a mixing bowl, I put a cup of self raising gluten free white flour from Dove’s Farm and 2 flat tablespoons of milled linseeds (chopped nuts would be good instead or just leave them out).
I poured the green ice cream over the flour and mixed in, putting it into 12 cupcake cases with a ladle.
They took 20mins to bake at 180.
They need to cool in their cases or they stick!
The flavour is mild and not too sweet, not too healthy tasting!

Plaice on a bed of black eye beans, spinach and cherry tomatoes

Plaice on a bed of black eye beans, spinach and cherry tomatoes

Quick as a flash veg curry. This took 10 minutes and used whatever was in the fridge. Ingredients: 4 cloves of garlic, 2 sliced onions, 2 tablespoons oil, 2 sliced chillies, 3 cloves, a teaspoon of cumin seeds, a teaspoon of hot curry powder, 250g chopped tomatoes, half a shredded cabbage, a chopped fresh cauliflower, 2 handfuls of frozen peas. Rice to serve. 
I cooked the rice while chopping the veg. 
The oil was heated to fry onion, garlic, spices and chilli. I then threw in the cauliflower for 5 minutes and finished with tomatoes, peas and cabbage. It takes about 7 minutes to tenderise the veg. I used whatever was in the fridge. Frozen cauliflower, spinach or beans would work, canned tomatoes if you like but simmer with the lid off to reduce away the excess juice. Try fresh cubed squash or leftover veg like carrots after a roast.

Quick as a flash veg curry. This took 10 minutes and used whatever was in the fridge. Ingredients: 4 cloves of garlic, 2 sliced onions, 2 tablespoons oil, 2 sliced chillies, 3 cloves, a teaspoon of cumin seeds, a teaspoon of hot curry powder, 250g chopped tomatoes, half a shredded cabbage, a chopped fresh cauliflower, 2 handfuls of frozen peas. Rice to serve. I cooked the rice while chopping the veg. The oil was heated to fry onion, garlic, spices and chilli. I then threw in the cauliflower for 5 minutes and finished with tomatoes, peas and cabbage. It takes about 7 minutes to tenderise the veg. I used whatever was in the fridge. Frozen cauliflower, spinach or beans would work, canned tomatoes if you like but simmer with the lid off to reduce away the excess juice. Try fresh cubed squash or leftover veg like carrots after a roast.

Chicken Passanda from pot coriander and store cupboard ingredients. I used a tsp each of ground coriander, turmeric, curry powder, a cinnamon stick, a pinch of salt and 2 bashed cardamom pods, sunflower oil, sliced onion and 3 crushed garlic cloves, 6 chicken thighs, boned, a small pot of natural yoghurt and the pot refilled with water, 2 tablespoons of ground almonds, handful of flaked almonds and a handful of fresh coriander leaves. 

First, I fried the spices gently for 5 minutes then added the garlic, onions and chicken and fried for 5 minutes, then the water, yoghurt and ground almonds and fried for another 15 mins until it dries out to a coating sauce. Meanwhile, I cooked some rice, toasted some flaked almonds and chopped some potted coriander leaves to decorate it. 20mins start to finish. Serves 4. Cost me about £4.50, £1.12 ish each.

Chicken Passanda from pot coriander and store cupboard ingredients. I used a tsp each of ground coriander, turmeric, curry powder, a cinnamon stick, a pinch of salt and 2 bashed cardamom pods, sunflower oil, sliced onion and 3 crushed garlic cloves, 6 chicken thighs, boned, a small pot of natural yoghurt and the pot refilled with water, 2 tablespoons of ground almonds, handful of flaked almonds and a handful of fresh coriander leaves. First, I fried the spices gently for 5 minutes then added the garlic, onions and chicken and fried for 5 minutes, then the water, yoghurt and ground almonds and fried for another 15 mins until it dries out to a coating sauce. Meanwhile, I cooked some rice, toasted some flaked almonds and chopped some potted coriander leaves to decorate it. 20mins start to finish. Serves 4. Cost me about £4.50, £1.12 ish each.