Sprout Scones, 15p (V*)


  Sniff not, leftovers fans, for this is a delicious and delightful way to use up any leftover greenery hanging around from recent festive dinners. Spring greens work just as well, and spinach, or a combination of anything green and leafy, really. Knobbly, straggly ends and rinds of cheese can be incorporated into these too, for a baked brunch or lunchtime treat […]

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Applesauce bread-cake (V), 9p


    This applesauce bread-that’s-a-bit-cakey is based on my original vegan banana bread recipe from my first cookbook, A Girl Called Jack. Photographs of that banana bread are sent to me on a near-daily basis, with an especial flurry at weekends, and I am delighted to receive them. It remains one of my favourite recipes, but every now and again a reader gets […]

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Coconut-milk soda bread, 51p (V)


“Sometimes I think I want to have another baby and so I go bake some bread to mull it over. A 40 min incubation period later and I’m rocking a warm snuggly bundle that isn’t wailing, chewing my nipples or crapping down my leg, but warmly snuggling into my hip as I rock it gently, and you know, I’m over […]

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Extra-Wholesome Banana Bread (VEGAN)


This beautiful bounty of Sunday morning baking was based on the vegan banana bread in my first book, A Girl Called Jack, but uses some wholemeal flour and coconut oil for extra goodness. If you don’t have coconut oil, fear not, as the song almost went, Any Oil Will Do. Vegetable, sunflower, light or mild olive, groundnut, rapeseed, whatever you […]

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This is what a pizza party looks like. Never let it be said I don't know how to enjoy myself.

First up in celebrating our multi-cultural foodie society, is the great Italian classic, pizza. For those of you so deeply ingrained in patriotism that you have never had, enjoyed or endorsed a pizza, you are missing out. The act of covering a fermented bread with toppings and cheese in fact goes back as far as the Ancient Greeks, who favoured […]

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Silver Dollar Pancakes


The recipe for these tiny, American-style pancakes was in my book, A Year In 120 Recipes. I like mine with traditional maple syrup and crisp bacon, but have them as you will. Makes around 20 mini-pancakes,to serve 4 plain flour 200g baking powder 1 tbsp sugar 1 tbsp salt a pinch eggs 2 butter 30g, melted, plus extra for frying […]

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Choux pastry hearts


I first made choux pastry last summer, in the kitchen at Blackfoot, in Exmouth Market, ad hoc and accidentally. I did a few shifts to fill in some gaps in the rota and learn some new skills in a restaurant environment, rather than pottering around at home, and it was quite the baptism of fire. Recipes were scant lists of […]

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Penne Pappa al Pomodoro (VEGAN), 21p

Penne pappa al pomodoro. Soaked bread crusts in tinned tomatoes are having their moment in my kitchen this week.

After yesterday’s culinary adventure with old bread crusts and tinned tomatoes (which turned out to be one of the nicest, bowl-lickingly-good things ever), I spooned the leftover portion of soup into a jar and stored it in the fridge, intending to make a soupy lunch out of it today. I opened the fridge about 12 o clock to find the […]

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Perfect Yorkshire Puddings

The trick to making perfect Yorkshire puddings is to get the fat really hot before you spoon in the batter. Then, once they’re in, resist the urge to open the oven door or you risk flaccid puds. Nobody loves a flaccid pud. Makes 6 in muffin tins or 1 large tin 2 tablespoons oil, sunflower or groundnut 125g flour a pinch of salt 1⁄2 teaspoon dried mixed herbs (optional) 2 eggs 150ml milk Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/gas 6. Drop a little oil into the bottom of each muffin tin, or the whole lot into a large tin, and stick them straight into the oven to heat. Tip the flour into a mixing bowl or jug (I mix my batter in a jug to make pouring it into the muffin tins or single tin easier). Add the salt and herbs, if using, and stir briefly to distribute. Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients – admittedly a bit more difficult in a jug than in a bowl but not insurmountable. Break in the eggs, pour in half of the milk and beat to form a smooth batter. Gradually beat in the rest of the milk. Check your muffin tins or the large tin: the fat should be smoking hot. Pour or spoon in the batter until each muffin tin is around a third full, or tip the whole lot into a large tin, then return to the […]

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Lardy Buns, 16p.

Photograph by Graham Turner for The Guardian.

I had my first lardy cake this summer, picked up from a surprisingly baked-goods-laden petrol station on the way home from Kent, and subsequently slept all the way home in the passenger seat off the back of a few mouthfuls of fat-laden, soft sweet carbohydrates. I set about researching how to make my own; half a block of lard still […]

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Penny Pizzas

Photography by Susan Bell.

I make penny pizzas as way of using up leftovers such as Mamma Jack’s Best Ever Chilli or Lentil Bolognese – but they are just as good topped with a dollop of tomato purée and some grated cheese. Or they are a good way to use up sliced mushy tomatoes that have passed their best and the dry ends of […]

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Courgette, Sultana & Lemon Bread

Photography by Susan Bell

Courgettes give off quite a bit of liquid when you grate them but don’t worry about draining it off in this recipe because the courgettey water will help to flavour the bread and add moisture. when you will be adding water to a recipe later anyway, it doesn’t make sense to fanny about taking liquid out only to put it […]

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Nutty seedy half-n-half bread.


Regular readers will know that I used to bake a lot of bread, but for one reason or another my bread-baking has fallen by the wayside in recent months. Working away from home a lot, writing a large book, and a very busy work schedule meant it somewhat slipped a few notches down the priority list. But as I made […]

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    Here’s the Rhubarb and Ginger Soda Bread recipe I made for my first ever FoodTube video… Ingredients: 300g flour 1 rounded tsp bicarbonate of soda 200ml milk (semi skimmed, soya, UHT, any milk will do) Juice of half a lemon, or 2 tbsp bottled lemon juice 100g fresh rhubarb 1 tbsp sugar Small piece of fresh ginger First, […]

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These simple but hearty scones are ideal for any time of day. I serve mine for breakfast with a runny egg on top, or for dinner with buttery cabbage and succulent chicken thighs. (Serves 4) 38p per person 500g potatoes, diced, 14p 25g butter, 12p 1 onion, finely chopped, 10p 1 egg, beaten, 22p 50g blue cheese, crumbled, 35p 2 […]

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Bramley apple soda bread (makes four generous portions): 200g flour (any will do – plain, self raising, rye, whole meal…) 1 rounded tsp bicarbonate of soda 2 tsp lemon juice 200ml milk 1 large Bramley apple (or other variety, but they do work incredibly well here!) First, measure out the milk and add the lemon juice, and leave to stand […]

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It’s sort of a muffin, sort of a pizza, sort of a ridiculously named open topped toasted sandwich bun thing. I don’t care what you call it, it was my late night munchy snack after 12 hours of travelling today, and it occurred to me that it would be a fab lunchbox alternative to sandwiches, a quick snack, or great […]

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Mandarin & Poppy Seed Loaf


I like to make this bread in the evening to wind down and de-stress. Kneading the dough for 10 minutes may sound like a long time but it’s very therapeutic to do at the end of the day, and those 10 minutes will go faster than you think! This recipe uses half the mandarin segments from a standard 300g (or […]

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Easy peasy garlic bread.


I’m so addicted to airy fairy easy peasy soda bread, I thought I would see how it translates into a quick and easy garlic bread to accompany the mountain of pasta-and-tomatoes I eat….. I’m pleased to say it works beautifully, with a quick spread of butter. Wrap well after cooling though, as it will stale quickly – but if it […]

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Cheese and onion drop scones


Friday morning breakfast, part of my ‘adventures in a meat-free cottage’ weekend… Ingredients (serves two): 100g self raising flour 100ml milk Half an onion 1 egg 30g hard cheese 2 sprigs of parsley 4 tbsp oil First, chop the onion very finely, and grate the cheese. I brought my small hand grater with me, which grates very finely – making […]

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Airy Fairy Easy Peasy Soda Bread


Think you can’t make bread? Or that you need a fancy pants bread maker to do so? RUBBISH. You have a natural, free bread maker in your palms and your knuckles – and this easy recipe with no proving or rising time is a great place to start. A lot of soda bread recipes use whole meal flour, salt, and […]

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Breakfast Sunshine Buns, 6p each


Breakfast Sunshine Buns – Pineapple, Carrot and Sultana) – 49p for 8 at 6p each. Ingredients:* 250g flour, 11p (65p/1.5kg) 1 sachet fast action dried yeast, 11p 30g sultanas, 6p (99p/500g) 1 carrot, 5p (part of a 1.25kg vegetable pack, £1) 1/2 can pineapple chunks, 16p (32p/227g) How To: 1. Weigh the flour into a large mixing bowl and add […]

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