Snacks with short­cuts

Izy Hos­sack

The Guardian - Feast - - Snacks with Shortcuts -

Prep Cook Serves

1 baguette (400g) 5-6 tbsp tomato puree con­cen­trate (the stuff in a squeezy tube)

1 bell pep­per, core and stem re­moved

125g ball fresh moz­zarella, drained Mixed dried herbs, if you have them

Salt and black pep­per 4 hand­fuls rocket leaves

Heat the oven grill to the high­est set­ting and put the rack in the top third of the oven.

Cut the baguette in half down its length. Spread the tomato puree over the cut sur­face of each half – it’s strong, so you don’t need a thick layer. Thinly slice the pep­per, tear the moz­zarella into small strips and scat­ter these over the tomato puree. Sprin­kle on some mixed dried herbs, if us­ing, and some salt and pep­per.

Put the baguette pieces on to a bak­ing tray and un­der the grill for three to five min­utes, un­til the cheese melts (keep an eye on them, as they can burn eas­ily). Take out of the oven and top with a cou­ple of gen­er­ous hand­fuls of rocket over each half. Prep Cook Serves 5 min 5 min 2-4 5 min 10 min 1

Veg­etable oil or olive oil 100g baby spinach (or 100g frozen spinach, de­frosted)

3 tbsp ri­cotta

2 tbsp ched­dar or parme­san, finely grated 1 gar­lic clove, peeled and crushed

Salt and black pep­per 1 large whole­meal tor­tilla

If us­ing fresh spinach, heat a large fry­ing pan with a glug of oil over a medium heat, add the spinach and leave to wilt, stir­ring oc­ca­sion­ally, for about three min­utes, then tip into a medium bowl. If us­ing frozen spinach, squeeze any ex­cess mois­ture out of the de­frosted spinach and put into a medium bowl.

Add the ri­cotta, ched­dar and gar­lic to the bowl with a few grinds of black pep­per and a pinch of salt. Stir to­gether well.

Put the fry­ing pan back over a medium heat. Put the tor­tilla in the pan and spread the spinach mix­ture over half of it, then fold the tor­tilla over to get a cres­cent shape. Fry un­til golden un­der­neath – about a minute – then flip and let the other side get golden, too. Take out of the pan, cut in half and eat. Prep Cook Serves 5 min 20 min 3-4

1 tbsp veg­etable oil 1 red onion, peeled and chopped into medi­um­size dice

Salt and black pep­per 1 x 400g tin can­nellini beans, drained

2 x 400g tins chopped toma­toes

1 pinch mixed dried herbs

1 pinch sugar 500g gnoc­chi

90g ched­dar or moz­zarella Fresh basil, torn (op­tional)

Heat the oil in a large fry­ing pan over a medium heat, then add the onion and a pinch of salt. Cook, stir­ring now and then, for five to seven min­utes, un­til slightly soft­ened. Add the beans, toma­toes, herbs and sugar, stir through, then leave to sim­mer while you cook the gnoc­chi.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add the gnoc­chi, cook for two to three min­utes – wait for them to float to the sur­face of the water – then drain.

Taste the tomato sauce and sea­son to taste, then tip the gnoc­chi into the sauce and stir through.

Sprin­kle over the grated cheese, cover the pan with a lid, large plate or wooden chop­ping board, and turn the heat to low. Leave for a few min­utes so the cheese melts, then re­move the lid, top with basil, if us­ing, and serve. Prep Cook Serves 10 min 1 hr 4

2 tbsp veg­etable oil 2 onions, peeled and chopped into medi­um­size dice

1 thumb-size piece gin­ger, peeled and finely chopped or grated

2 tbsp medium curry pow­der

300g red lentils, rinsed

1 x 400g tin chopped toma­toes

1 x 400ml tin co­conut milk 750ml water 2-4 tbsp soy sauce 1 tbsp le­mon juice, white-wine vine­gar or cider vine­gar 4 large car­rots Salt

Fresh co­rian­der, roughly chopped

Fry the onion and gin­ger in one ta­ble­spoon of the oil in a large pot over a medium heat for five min­utes, un­til slightly soft­ened.

Stir in the curry pow­der and cook for one minute. Add the lentils, chopped toma­toes, co­conut milk, water, soy sauce and le­mon juice. Stir to­gether, bring to a boil, then turn the heat to low and leave to sim­mer for 30 min­utes. Add a splash more water to the pan while it’s cook­ing if it’s get­ting too thick.

Mean­while, turn the oven to its high­est set­ting. Cut the car­rots in quar­ters length­ways, then into 3cm-long ba­tons. Toss with the re­main­ing oil and a pinch of salt on a bak­ing tray and roast for 20-30 min­utes, un­til start­ing to brown, turn­ing half­way through.

Di­vide the dal be­tween bowls and top with the car­rots and chopped co­rian­der. Store any left­overs in a sealed con­tainer in the fridge for up to three days.

Izy Hos­sack is a stu­dent of food science at Leeds Univer­sity. Her sec­ond cook­book, The Savvy Cook, is out now (Oc­to­pus)

Find recipes for roasted broc­coli na­chos and beet­root risotto at the­guardian.com/food

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