Category Archives: Cheaty Tuesday

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Ever So Cheaty Tuesday

Ok, so these really are just posh Pot Noodles, but they look so appetising. And only 170 calories! Conscious of the ticking clock until the kids get home, working from home I have little time or inclination to whip up a tasty, satisfying lunch. If there are no leftovers from the night before I’ll a) have a bacon sandwich b) bread and jam c) three lollipops and bag of hula hoops).

So whilst I am not entirely comfortable with the packaging element of buying this for my lunch- it is very quick and very easy. Shred a few carrots, spring onions and peppers and throw them in before pouring over the hot water and you’ve got yourself a quick, tasty lunch.

If only they did family size pots.

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A few ideas for the week ahead

If you’re shopping today, here are a few ideas to keep it simple next week- and remember- it’s nearly half-term!

Monday– Tagliatelle wth Tenderstem broccoli and melting cheese sauce- (use creme fraiche and melty cheese like taleggio or fontina
Tuesday– 15 minute fabulous chicken in red wine with magic potatoes (Smash actually- but bear with me on this..)
Wednesday– Spanish Beef Estofado (beef shin (or jerusalam artichokes), potatoes, root veg, peas- made in 15 minutes- oven overnight or on timer.
Thursday– as per Wednesday, even better the next day.
Friday– Courgette and Rice Gratin- courgette, rice and cheese sauce.

All made in 15-30 minutes, all with hidden veg.

The gratuitous shot of a courgette is just for you Justine Compton.

Cheaty Tuesday: Creamy Spinach Spaghetti with Tomato and Sausage

It is really one of those OMGWFT? days. Busy, busy busy and need something quick to cook, quick to eat and quick to clean.

This is the original 15 minute meal. Two pans, 5 ingredients.
Serves 2 big and 2 small people with leftovers.

You’ll need:

Sausages- I’m partial to a skinny chipolata: they are so quick to cook. 2 or 3 per person. For veggie sausages, I think Sainsbury’s are the nicest.

300g wholewheat spaghetti (my preference but any would do)
Half to a whole carton of passata (depending on your level of sauciness)
2 tbsp double cream
Frozen, chopped spinach (again, I can only find this in Sainso’s)
OR, peas, courgettes, broccoli.

Cook the spaghetti as per instructions and get the sausages frying nicely in a pan.
If you’re using peas, courgettes or broccoli, chop the latter two into bitesize chunks/florets and add to the boiling pasta a minute before the end of cooking time. (A naughtier but tastier method would be adding the veg to the frying sausages….)
Drain the pasta and veggies, keeping everything in the pot. Slice the sausages thinly and add to the pasta. Pour in the passata and cream. Season well with salt and pepper and serve with parmesan shavings.

Enjoy, safe in the knowledge that a clean kitchen is but a couple of dirty pans away.

Cheaty Tuesday – Clever Italian Meatballs

Take just over an hour and will feed you all week. And no photo for this one, I reckon you know what a meatball looks like.

So clever it’s like the Magic Porridge pot. This is how we ate them

Day One- pasta with the tomato sauce and a little meatball
Day Two- A few meatballs with green beans and buttery mash
Day Three- A MEATBALL SUB WITH MELTING MOZARELLA
Not necessarily on consecutive days but you get the picture- it was a week of precious little cooking.

For 4 (x3)

For the meatballs
60g breadcrumbs
60ml milk
400g minced beef
200g minced pork
1 egg
30g parmesan
a grating of nutmeg
2 tbsp flat leafed parsley and mint, chopped
salt and pepper
For the Sauce
6 tbsp olive oil (or significantly less)
1 small onion chopped
1 garlic clove, chopped
A pinch of dried chilli
750g fresh tomatoes
3 x 400g tins plum tomatoes.

Mix the breadcrumbs with the milk and ;eave for 10 mins- Then mix with other meatball ingredients and season. Mould mixture into roughly 35g balls, set on a tray and leave to rest.
Warm oil in a large frying pan and gently cook onion, garlic and chilli for 15 mins. Add fresh tomatoes and cook for 10 mins. Add tinned tomatoes and simmer gently for 45 mins.

Heat oven to 220c and bake meatballs for 15 minutes, turning once until they are starting to brown.
Blast the sauce with a blender and poach meatballs in the sauce for a further 15 minutes. Allow it all to rest for 30 minutes before serving.
Serve as above.

From Rachel Roddy via Guardian Cook