Cooking doesn’t have to be hard work. No one knows how long you’ve spent in the kitchen. All they are thinking is if they really liked the food or not.
Having already created two cooking apps for Apple, I have now created my own blog version which simplifies otherwise complicated recipes so anyone can feel confident in cooking them. The easy recipes and the way they are written are great for teaching kids to cook too, plus it’s all designed for a basic kitchen and the ingredients are available in most supermarkets. The cost of most of these healthy recipes is, per portion, less than the price of a commercial sandwich and predominantly pescatarian, vegetarian, vegan with an anti ageing and mostly healthy bias. There is an indulgent section too because no one’s perfect and life’s too short. So you can easily pimp up your repertoire on a budget.
Since I starting cooking Anna’s truly delicious and easy recipes, I am throwing away most of my cookbooks as I use only one or two recipes from each book, whereas I’ll happily cook all of these recipes, over and over again. It has become my favourite cookbook, and I’m always recommending it to my friends who want really delicious food without the hassle.
Jenny TV producer/director and mum.
This tajine has all the flavours of a tasty Moroccan dish. It’s perfect for a warming supper or dinner party now it’s colder. It has that lovely combo of savoury and sweet because it’s got delicious spices and dried apricots in it. It’s super easy as it’s sll baked in the oven and needs little attention. Perfect if you are busy. I serve it with saffron couscous, garlicky yogurt (Alpro have just started doing a sugar free plain yogurt) and my Moroccan orange salad, recipe in the index, and it’s a big hit with vegetarians and non vegetarians.
4-5 carrots sliced lengthways
4-5 shallots peeled
1 aubergine cubed
100g unsulphured dried apricots, chopped
4-5 baby courgettes or two large ones cut into spears
250 ml vegetable stock
1 big pinch of saffron fronds
A tin of chick peas and the water they come in
4 tablespoons of olive oil
A few bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon each of ground ginger, turmeric, chilli flakes and smoked paprika
Salt to taste
1 teaspoon of Harissa
A small handful of chopped parsley (optional)
I have taken the flavours of a classic Spanish clam stew and rejigged it so it tastes great even though there is no meat in it. Normally it would have Chorizo in it, so I used smoked paprika which is the flavor of Chorizo instead and it tastes just as good. It’s a really easy recipe and great for a date night. Also, the frozen Clams were a bargain £3.59 for 500g in the freezer section of Waitrose. I always buy a few boxes and keep them in the freezer just in case.
1 medium onion, finely sliced
Pinch of hot smoked paprika
Pinch of saffron threads
500g of clams (thawed if using frozen)
400g tin of chopped tomatoes
A bunch of parsley, finely chopped
1 tablespoon sherry
2 cloves garlic
3 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
2 slices of sourdough bread (optional)
I love this recipe so much. I got it from the Moro cookbook and have tweaked it a little to make it easier. Every time I serve it everyone adores it and wants the recipe. The taste is sweetly delicious and very Moroccan because it’s really fresh and fragrant with the perfume of cumin and coriander. It’s great with meat, salads and couscous dishes or with my vegetable tajine. I don’t peel the carrots because I can’t be bothered and I assume most of the goodness and taste is in the skin and no one notices if you do or don’t.
Serves 3 but you can double or triple the ingredients
About 6 medium sized carrots
1 tsp ground cumin
1 minced garlic clove
juice of half a lemon
1 teaspoon maple syrup or sugar
1 tablespoon olive oil
Small bunch of coriander
This recipe is a French classic. It is a perfect way to prepare artichokes, simply steamed or boiled for 45 minutes and steeped in my dressing. They are worth the effort and there’s something luxe about eating the soft creamy heart as the prize after eating the soft ends off of the leaves. If you don’t know how to prepare or eat them, follow my recipe and I promise they are divine plus artichokes are a super food packed with antioxidants and liver cleansing properties..just google them for their list of health giving benefits.
1 artichoke per person
My vinaigrette recipe
While I was in Morocco recently I was hoping to learn to cook new amazing dishes but our food was cooked for us by a cook who didn’t speak any English so I didn’t learn much. Since I got back I wanted to put more Moroccan and moorish dishes on the blog, so along with my Moro cookbooks which I adore and a new book I bought, Orange Blossom and Honey by John Gregory-Smith from which I am learning new recipes that he bought back from Morocco I hope to enthuse you as much as possible with the fragrant flavours from the souks.
This potato tagine is delicious with couscous ,salad and roast meat if you eat meat.
I also like a dollop of garlic infused Greek yogurt on top, but you could use soya yogurt if you prefer.
1 kg of Maris Piper potatoes peeled and halved or quartered depending on size
4 tablespoons of olive oil
1 red onion finely sliced
Two red peppers deseeded and cut into strips
3 garlic cloves thinly sliced
4 tomatoes finely chopped
2 tablespoons of tomato puree
1 teaspoon of ground cumin
1 teaspoon of ground ginger
1 teaspoon of paprika (I used sweet smoked paprika)
500 ml of vegetable stock (I used Kallø organic French onion stock cubes)
1 red chilli
2 teaspoons of harissa (I buy a ready-made pot from Sainsbury’s)
Juice of half a lemon
Small handful of finely chopped coriander leaves
10 g of flaked almonds
Salt and pepper to taste
Preserved lemons are a key ingredient in Moroccan cooking. The Moroccans put them in tagines and salads. They become sweet and mellow after pickling and are a sort of tangy condiment, pepping up the flavour of anything you stick them in. You only need a small amount finely chopped but according to John Gregory-Smith in his Moroccan cookbook Orange Blossom and Honey, you can also cut a slice and put it in your martini. Lemons are really healthy too, and good for your immune system, liver function, eyes and is the only food in the world that is anionic, which makes them really beneficial to your health.
1 sterilised jar
4 unwaxed lemons
7 tablespoons of salt
I had this salad as a starter in a Moroccan restaurant in Paris and I have made it ever since. It’s divine and reminds me of that restaurant I think was called the Star. I went there twice with my boyfriend with a ten year gap between visits and when we told them that we loved it there and had come back ten years later they were very blasé and not interested, however the food was fantastic still. This salad is great as a dessert too. It’s perfumey with orange flower water so you feel transported to an exotic place in Morocco, at least I do, and it’s pretty healthy. So give it a try….
2 large naval oranges skin and pith cut off and thinly sliced
1 teaspoon of orange flower water
1/2 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
A few sprigs of coriander, finely chopped
Icing sugar, for dusting