As I’m self-isolating with my vegan daughter, I’ve been trying to cook healthy vegan meals. We had a couple of leeks in the fridge which needed to be used up, so I invented this leek and potato soup, which was pretty delicious.
A stick of celery
2 Veg stock cubes
Dried herbs (mine was a mix of basil, oregano, parsley, marjoram, sage and thyme according to the packet)
Peel and chop potatoes into cubes around 1cm. Chop the leeks into chunks about 1cm wide. Chop the onion finely. Fry it in a little oil. until it’s translucent. Add the potatoes and fry for a few minutes. Dissolve the stock cubes in around 2 litres of boiling water. Add the liquid to the pan. Add the leeks. Let it bubble. Chop the celery, and add to the pot. Add a tablespoon of marmite, 2-3 tablespoons of the mixed herbs and some chilli flakes. Stir it all up. Simmer for about 15 minutes. Enjoy!
Not to be outdone by Sil’s 15 Minute Meals done by an idiot, here’s the lunch I cooked my yesterday for my brood as a change from normal roasts, to unanimous acclaim and a request to do it for Xmas dinner.
Enough chicken legs for everyone
8 good sausages (I used Sainsbury’s best Pork and Apple ones)
Loads of thyme and some sage (out of the garden)
Half a chorizo ring
Jar of black olives (cheapo ones are fine)
4 cloves of garlic
Some pickled chills if you like a tang
butternut squash (or courgette, or potato, or whatever)
2 – 3 parsnips, depending on size
4 or 5 good size carrots
3 oranges (and some lemon/ lime if you want)
olive oil, salt, pepper
Purple sprouting broccoli
Get a large baking dish, and pre-heat the oven to about gas mark 5.
Lay the chicken in the baking dish. Cut sausages into 3 pieces, and throw them into the tray. Chop chorizo into fingernail sized chunks, throw them on. Peel and chop the squash, carrots and parsnips into decent-sized chunks – about half the size of your thumb (too small and they’ll disintegrate). Throw it all on. Ditto olives and pickled chillis.
Juice the oranges and pour it over everything, drizzle olive oil over it all (not too much as the meat will produce its own fat).
Finely chop garlic, some orange zest and pour it over. Add some salt, and black pepper and lots of sage and thyme. Wuffle it around with a wooden spoon to make sure everything is oiled and seasoned. If you like tang, put pickled chillis on the top. Don’t chop them; that way, they’re easily identifiable and can be removed for people who like the flavour they impart but don’t want to eat chunks of palate-scouring chilli.
Put it in the oven. Open bottle of wine to let it breathe. Drink a glass of it to test it. 25 mins later, turn everything over in the dish and put it back.
About 1 hour after you turned the oven on, put the kettle on and boil some water. While it’s boiling, put peas and broccoli in a microwavable bowl, add 2 tbsp of water, cover and nuke for 5 mins.
Serve everything. Use juices left in pan, veg water, a glug of wine and water from kettle plus a Knorr Chicken Stock Pot to make gravy. Eat it all.
Total cost, excluding wine, about £15 for 4 people.