Student food can mean an endless diet of jacket potatoes. If this is the case you can ring the changes with my puffed-up potatoes and incorporate whatever you have in the fridge to round out your dinner. The whisked egg whites lift the stodge of dense potato and gives a soufflé-like finish. It takes a little longer to make than a regular “jack pot” but I think the finish is worth it.
(In the pictures they’re accompanied by sweet and sour peppers but this is optional – there’s plenty of sustenance in the potato!).
Approximate cost for main ingredients, excludes storecupboard ingredients (prices from Tesco.com 7th Oct 2012): 62p
Soufflé potatoes (serves 1):
1 baking potato
1 slice of smoked ham, sliced
Big handful of grated cheddar cheese
1 spring onion, sliced
1 egg, separated
1 teaspoon mustard
- Bake the potatoes as you would for jackets, smothering with a little oil, salt and pepper and baking in a 180°C oven for about an hour.
- Just before you take the potatoes out of the oven, whisk the egg whites to soft peaks. Mix the mustard into the yolks.
- Take the potatoes out of the oven and leave to cool for a moment (this helps loosen the flesh from the skin and makes them easier to handle).
- Using a teatowel to hold the spuds, cut the potatoes in half lengthways and scoop the flesh out into a bowl. Put the hollowed-out skins back on the tray.
- Mash the flesh with the cheese, mustard, ham, spring onion egg yolk and mustard.
- Fold in the egg whites and scoop into the empty skins. Put back in the oven and turn up to 220°C.
- Take out of the oven in about 15 minutes, or when the tops have started to brown.
I always mean to try interesting lasagna recipes – ones that aren’t classic lasagne al forno that is – but when I come to cook it I can’t resist meaty, tomatoey rich ragu topped with creamy bechamel. It takes Jamie Oliver to convince me to try it another way.
This Summer veg lasagne is inspired by one from his 30 Minute Meals book. It’s perfect for the Summer months and ideal for clearing out the fridge! I grabbed a bunch of things that needed using up for here and it came out lovely.
Summer veg lasagne (serves 4):
A bunch of spring onions
3 cloves of garlic
Large handful frozen peas
Large handful spring greens
Large bunch of basil
150ml single cream
150ml veg stock
250g cottage cheese
250g fresh lasagne sheets
- Get the kettle on to boil, get a large frying pan on a high heat and add a splash of oil. Put the oven on 180°C.
- Slice up the spring onions and add to the pan. Crush in the garlic and toss well to prevent sticking. Snap off the woody bits of the asparagus then slice up the stems, but leave the tips intact and keep to one side for now. Add the chopped stems to the pan with a splash of boiled water.
- Add the peas and greens and keep stirring. Chop the basil and add to the pan with the cream and add plenty of seasoning. Cover with stock and bring to the boil.
- Get a roasting tray and start to layer up lasagne sheets and veg mix until you have used everything up. Finish with pasta. Add a splash of boiled water to the cottage cheese to slacken and then spread over your pasta. Scatter the asparagus on top of the cottage cheese and grate over plenty of parmesan. Transfer to the oven and bake until golden and crunchy. Serve with panzanella.
I’d heard about these gorditas (“little fat girls”) ages and ages ago and then forgot all about them. I was recently reminded they exist and decided to make them straight away. They are little cornmeal pancakes that you can use to top with anything, but with some leftover veal from Farmers Choice to use up I went for a fruity, sharp salsa and a salty feta for a really zingy combo. This is one of those recipes you can dump pretty much everything from, the key part is the gorditas themselves – tasty little breads you can use for a canape, starter or main course as I did here!
Gorditas with apple salsa (makes 16 pancakes):
250g plain flour
1 heaped teaspoon baking powder
700ml hot water
200g cooked veal, sliced
200g feta, diced
For the salsa:
1 apple, finely diced
3 tomatoes, peeled and diced
4 spring onions, sliced
1 teaspoon hot sauce
Red wine vinegar
- Mix the flours and baking powder together in a bowl with a pinch of salt. Gradually add the hot water until the dough comes together. Split into 16 and squash into small discs. Dust with flour and put aside while you make the salsa.
- For the salsa mix together all the ingredients and balance with salt, sugar, vinegar and hot sauce until you get a lovely tang.
- To cook the gorditas get a frying pan very hot and with a dash of oil cook them on both sides until puffed up. Serve with the veal, feta and salsa. If you have some a little shredded coriander would be great too.