Category Archives: I Don’t Like Mondays

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Luscious Red Pepper Curry

45 mins (you’ll kick yourself if you don’t make double)

I really can’t believe how good this it- I’ve dabbled in dhals, jalfrezis and rogan joshes but none were as quick and delicious as this one.

The kids loved it, I only put one red chilli in it so that’s probably why. You could hide and abundance of veg in here too. I made it with chicken, but you could substitute pumpkin, aubergine, okra or just about anything. Except maybe more peppers.

For 4 (but do make for 8- it’s worth it)

For the red pepper paste

2 red peppers deseeded and roughly chopped
1/2 a red onion chopped
1 x 2cm cube ginger chopped
5 garlic gloves
1 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 turmeric
70g flaked almonds
a pinch of cayenne
If you want a little spice, add a chilli, dried chilli flakes or smoked paprika

For the sauce
1 tbsp of sunflower oil
4 chicken breasts (or 8 thighs) cut into pieces
300ml chicken stock
Juice 1/2 lemon
Salt and Pepper
Fresh coriander, chopped

Throw all the ingredients for the paste with a good pinch of salt and a little oil into a food processor or liquidiser and blitz until you have a smooth paste. Heat the oil until hot, tip in the paste and fry gently for 10 mins. (oh it smells so good!) Add the chicken, season well and cook for 10 mins, turning the chicken over in the paste. Add enough stock to make a thick sauce and bring to the boil. Turn down heat and simmer uncovered for another 15 minutes.
To finish, add a squeeze of lemon, sprinkle of coriander and serve with rice.

I have stolen this recipe in its entirety from Henry Dimbleby who, in turn was inspired by a recipe in Madhur Jaffrey’s Indian Cookery Book. So you see, totally authentic.

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Cheaty Chicken Noodle Soup

WFT? has a really bad cold. A nasty cough and massive headache.
Comfort food is the order of the day and for once, WFT? doesn’t give a monkey’s if the kid’s will eat it. All you need is a bit of leftover chicken, spaghetti and carrots. Spring onion and mushrooms too.

I don’t care how many this feeds as I’m going to eat it all by myself. It takes 10 minutes and one pan.

1 litre chicken stock- fresh is best but powdered vegetable/chicken stock would do
1 carrot, sliced finely
a few mushrooms as above
a few spring onions as above
a handful of spaghetti- broken up
a handful shredded, cooked chicken
1 star anise (this makes all the difference)

Heat the stock to a simmer and throw in all the ingredients. Simmer until the pasta is cooked and check for seasoning.

*get rid of the kids for an hour and enjoy soup on the sofa watching something you missed last week – Broadchurch/Last Tango In Halifax/BotchedUpBodies

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# I Don’t Like Mondays- Cheesy Courgette Gratin

Cheesy Courgette Gratin, 30 minutes from Elizabeth David, On Vegetables.
Make loads of this and have it all week, it’s so delicious I was eating it from the fridge for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Perfect January comfort food- cheap, cheesy and cheerful.

For 4 good sized portions

500g courgettes, washed, trimmed and grated (save time and your knuckles, use a food processor and bung it in the dishwasher afterwards)
100g butter
2 tbsp flour
1/2 litre milk
3 tbsp parmesan or gruyere
A cup of basmati or similar

Cook the rice until al dente, meanwhile sweat the courgette in a little butter and leave with the lid on, on a low heat for 5-10 minutes. Make the bechamel by melting the butter in a pan, adding the flour and stirring constantly on a low heat for a minute- add the milk slowly and bring to the boil- stirring- (use a whisk- fewer lumps). Stir in half the cheese and mix with the courgettes and rice.
Sprinkle remaining cheese on top and crunch it up under the grill for 5 minuted. Serve on its on or with anything you fancy.

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