Linseed crisps

Linseed crisps

Cooking for people who can’t eat grains, including wheat, can be a challenge when it comes to snacks and finger foods. It’s all very well to keep putting out those celery and carrot sticks on the table, but sometimes, you just want to do more for people. These linseed crisps do just that.

Salmon balls: paleo and no starch

A basic salmon ball recipe

Easy and tasty no starch recipes can be challenging to find. These little balls of salmon tastiness fit the bill perfectly in our household. They’re quick to make, so they’re great for an emergency school lunch on those badly organised mornings.

Lean mean green vegetable soup

Sunday soup: Paddington Foodie’s lean mean green vegetable soup

This soup is surprisingly delicious. It’s loaded with veggies, all of them green, and not much else. It has kale, but doesn’t taste like it, and there’s also celery, zucchini and other green things, but it doesn’t taste like any of them either. The Paddington Foodie, who is the star creator if this soup, said everyone…

Guacamole, served with some extras to make a tasty little appetiser


Avocado is a bit of a luxury here, and guacamole is an absolute delicacy. Because of its specialness, our guacamole is really just mashed avocado with seasonings added: lemon juice, salt and pepper, and sometimes onion. That’s about it. If we have a few people, then it becomes a full-blown appetiser with some celery and tomato to…

Hot beetroot soup

Sunday soup: Hot beetroot soup

This beetroot soup starts with the richness of baked vegetables and adds a home-made vegetable stock. For us, it is a change from the more Russian-inspired borsch.


Sunday soup: Broccoli and almond

Broccoli soup with almonds and leek makes a delicious entree or even a light dinner: just have more if you’re still hungry!

Leek and potato soup, a hearty meal for the family

Sunday soup: Leek and potato

Leek and potatoes combine to make this soup a real classic. We enjoy this as a hearty evening meal or Sunday lunch rather than the more formal, pureed presentation. Sometimes, we take out a little, puree that, and pour it back in to thicken the soup a bit.

Garlic and preserved lemons with tagliatelle

Garlic and preserved lemon with tagliatelle

Once you discover how easy it is to make your own preserved lemons, you’ll then be on a mission to find ways to use them. We have two recipes in one here: both use garlic, parsley and preserved lemon, and one adds in dried mushrooms and cashew cream to fill out the flavour. You could also use normal…



I first met tabouleh when it appeared in a local bistro many years ago. Served as part of a chicken and tabouleh sandwich, it quickly became my favourite bought lunch. I’ve since learned how to make it, and it appears a few times over summer, especially at barbecues and parties.

Lentil soup

Sunday soup: lentil soup

This lentil soup is my favourite: it’s easy to make, simultaneously filling and refreshing, and really, really delicious. Who would have thought a straightforward combination of lentils and vegetables would work so well?

For starters: green shallots with tagliatelle pasta

Easy and elegant: shallots with tagliatelle

It’s almost too easy. This combination of creamy, melt-in-your mouth shallots and tagliatelle is so simple it makes a perfect entree on a busy night. And it looks great. The bulbs cook down into a creamy sauce for the pasta while the tops hold their shape and colour, just to make it all look good.

Pizza with rosemary, potato and zucchini

An entrée pizza: potato and rosemary

An entrée pizza with potato and rosemary isn’t a pizza for consuming between main courses, although you could do that if you want. And it’s not the main course either. No, here it’s a first-course pizza: to refuel hungry teenagers when they get home from school, and to feed hungry guests as they walk in the door.

Celery and leek soup, finished with a dash of cashew cream

Sunday soup: cream of celery and leek

This light soup is an ideal starter, preparing the way for a more substantial roast or casserole. The leek and celery blend together with the rich, velvety flavour of the shallots. A dash of cashew cream finishes it off.

Traffic-light paneer: three curries for a tri-coloured taste

Traffic-lights paneer

Red, amber, green: three different curries to accompany paneer. Served with chapati, they make an exciting first course for young and old alike. It’s a bit fiddly to make the three separate curries, and it takes the best part of an afternoon. But it’s worth it to get “This is the best ever” from little voices, talking about…

Chicken and sweetcorn soup

Sunday soup: Chicken and sweet corn

Our boy loved chicken and sweetcorn soup from the first spoonful he ever had as a three-year old in the local Chinese restaurant. It’s firmly entrenched as a must-have when we go out, and it’s now a treat when we stay home. It’s a treat that tastes great and is so easy to make.

A tart of caramelised onions over a bed of gooey blue cheese: delicious!

Onion and blue cheese tart

This has become our picnic tart of choice. The soft onions collapse into the rich, gooey blue cheese to give a wonderful savoury starter. It belongs in that small space between setting up and the entire extended family and friends converging for the main meal.

Cream of mushroom soup

Sunday soup: cream of mushroom

Sunday night is for soup. Tonight it’s cream of mushroom, using the beautiful orange saffron milkcap mushrooms we picked on our mushrooming adventure. Because we have people in the house who just don’t like cream, we’ve gone vegan and used cashews for the ‘cream’ part of the soup. It’s really tasty and surprisingly filling.

Roasted onion and garlic soup surprises with its sweet, delicate flavours

Sunday soup: roasted onion and garlic

The roasted onion and garlic combine to make a deliciously light and sweet soup. It’s ideal for a light supper or as a first course. And it’s very, very easy.   Advertisements

Mermaid's tresses

Sweet and salty mermaid’s tresses

Our family first encountered Mermaid’s tresses before we even were a family: it was served at our local Chinese restaurant while my now-husband and I were courting (now there’s an old-fashioned concept), and we loved it. You can use any leafy green, but the best results come from using bok choy.

Mint and ginger complement the sweet pear and persimmon combination

A pear-persimmon treat with sweet ginger sauce

It’s sweet, but there’s no (added) sugar in this dessert. It’s gluten-free, egg-free and easy. A small button of cashew paste adds substance to this ideal appetiser or an even-more-ideal light dessert.