All posts filed under: Recipes

5 Surprisingly Gorgeous Things You Can Make From An Old Tin Can [#JacksHacks]

This ambient bath lantern was made in a matter of minutes, with a thin cross head screwdriver, a hammer, and a lick of spray paint. I didn’t paint the inside because open flames and paint aren’t the best of bedfellows. It gave out a surprising amount of soft, flickering light and made me feel as though there was a small starry sky in my bath last night. Which is nice. I’m going to make another with a silver-lined tin instead of a white one, for a better reflection, but as a first go at it, I really love this. Be careful handing it once lit – the rim of the can gets HOT. This is a double walled planter – I didn’t have any real plants small enough for it to photograph last night and as you can see from the pic, it was dark so I wasn’t about to go forking about in the garden with a head torch on, looking for a particularly pretty weed to uproot either! The thinner, inside can has …

Baby Dutch Babies With Fruit Cocktail, from 35p

Fancy getting a little bit fruity? Whether spoiling a special someone, or simply showing yourself some love, you won’t regret whipping up this quick, gorgeous, and deliciously luxurious treat for breakfast, brunch, or even dessert. I topped mine with caramelised pears, canned peaches, and fruit cocktail in the testing phases, and fruit cocktail just about pipped the others to the post, but mostly because of that cheeky little cherry on top. Let me know what you would have on yours in the comments below, or by commenting on Facebook or Instagram! And if you make it, I always love to see your photos on social media – tag me with #jackmonroe on Instagram or @bootstrapcook on Twitter – it’s nice to be nice! <3 AD : This post is part of a long-term commercial collaboration between me and Del Monte Europe. Other links in this post may be affiliate links and may earn a small commission on purchases made. This does not affect the integrity of the recommendation, as I truly only recommend products I …

Vegan Pastitsio, 77p

This recipe has been produced in partnership with Linda McCartney foods for Veganuary. Pastitsio is a food that reminds me of my childhood; snaffled from piled-high buffet plates at various relatives’ houses following Greek Orthodox church services, usually a christening or a funeral. My aunties would usually make them; huge trays of something that was a cross between a lasagne and a macaroni cheese. Usually stuffed with ground meat and several kinds of cheese, it was a challenge to make one that was vegan but still authentic enough to not get myself excommunicated from my family! But here it is – and it’s an instant classic in my household already. Using Linda McCartney’s Vegemince, it’s super simple to make – and can be enjoyed straight from the fridge, so make a large batch and give yourself a few days off cooking. Who said Veganuary meant missing out? Ingredients – serves 6 generously from 77p each. All prices quoted are based on Asda groceries and correct at time of writing. For the bechemal:50g flour, 2p (45p/1.5kg)60ml …

Mincemeat Pudding, from 37p

Serves at least 4 very generously, from 37p. For the full shopping list, see here. 300g white bread, 14p (36p/800g, HW Nevill at Tesco) 300ml whole milk, 26p (50p/568ml or 1pt, Asda) OR the combined strained juices from the canned mandarins and canned grapefruit from the Stuffing Roast and Prawn Cocktail, if making this as part of the Christmas menu 50g baking spread, 11p (55p/250g, Best For Baking spread, Asda) 300g mincemeat, 84p (£1.15/411g, Asda) 1 egg, 13p (75p/6 medium free range eggs, Asda) 400g can of custard, 50p (Tesco or Asda) – optional First dice your bread, tear it up, or blast it in a food processor. They all give a similar result, with the food processor edging it for a slightly more even texture but not enough to justify yet more washing up, in my humble opinion. But do whatever feels right to you, with whatever you have at your disposal. Place into a large mixing bowl that will easily hold twice its volume, and set aside for a moment. In a second, …

Yorkshire Puddings, from 11p

This recipe makes eight small Yorkshire puddings in regular sized muffin tins or four large Yorkshire puddings in Yorkshire pudding tins. 2 tablespoons or 25g of lard, 4p (39p/250g, Stockwells at Tesco) 125 g plain flour, 4p (45p/1.5kg, Stockwells at Tesco) A pinch of salt, <1p Half a teaspoon of mixed dried herbs, 1p (30p/18g, Asda) 2 medium eggs, 25p (75p for 6 medium free range eggs, Asda) 150 ml of whole milk, 13p (50p/568ml or 1pt whole milk, Asda) First turn your oven on to 190°C. Drop a little lard into the bottom of each muffin tin, and pop the tin into the oven to heat. Weigh your flour into a jug, this makes pouring out the batter far easier. Add the salt and herbs and stir briefly to distribute. Crack in the eggs and pour over half of the milk, and beat in the remaining milk. Check your muffin tin, the fat should be very hot! Remove it carefully but quickly from the oven. Pour the batter in, divided evenly between the tins. Return …

Big Pigs In Kingsize Blankets, 39p

Serves at least 4, but that’s allowing for three full sized sausages each, and even I admit that may be a little excessive. Maybe. For the full shopping list, see here. 12 sausages, £1.20 (Woodside Farms at Tesco) 200g cooking bacon, rashers only, 30p (75p/500g, Woodside Farms at Tesco) 1 tbsp cranberry sauce, 4p (49p/200g, Tesco) First separate your cooking bacon out into ‘rashers, chunks and scraps’. You want the rashers for this, but some of the more substantial scraps will do as well. The chunks work well in stews and casseroles, and the scraps in pasta sauces and in with your sprouts. Brush each sausage with a little cranberry sauce – this helps the bacon stick to it and stops runaway blankets, and also imparts a note of sweetness that’s delightfully pleasant and unexpected. Wrap a rasher (or substantial scrap or two) around each sausage, and place snugly in a small roasting dish, side by side. If you pack them in tightly, they are less likely to unravel, so you can get away with …

Prawn Cocktail With Caramelised Grapefruit, £1.15

[*This post recommends Del Monte products because I genuinely really love them, and because we are currently working together in a long term commercial partnership. I never recommend anything that I don’t genuinely use and love, but in the interests of transparency, that’s why they’re namechecked here!] To serve 4, generously. For the full shopping list, see here. 200g small prawns, £2 (Smartprice at Asda, frozen) 90ml/6tbsp seafood sauce, 36p (£1/250ml, Tesco) salt and pepper, <1p 1 can of grapefruit, £1.10 (Del Monte*) 130g shredded iceberg lettuce, 35p (Growers Selection at Asda) 200g cherry tomatoes, 48p (Nightingale Farms at Tesco) half a cucumber, 32p (Growers Selection at Asda) First defrost your prawns overnight in the fridge – best to do this in the sealed bag they came in to catch the excess liquid that comes out as they defrost. If you forget, and we all do, you can leave them in a bowl of cold water, covered, at room temperature on Christmas morning, but squeeze one between finger and thumb to make sure it is …

Jack Monroe’s 3 Course, Zero-Waste Christmas Dinner from £4.34

All prices quoted are per person or portion, and based on generously feeding four adults, with leftovers! The full shopping list is given at the bottom of the post, which was accurate at the time of publication but may be subject to change. Prawn Cocktail, from £1.15 Roast Potatoes, from 12p Mandarin-Glazed Carrots & Parsnips, from 19p Cranberry, Cashew & Veg-Peel Stuffing Roast, from 27p Yorkshire Puddings, from 11p Free Range Roast Chicken, from £1.26 Big Pigs In Kingsize Blankets, from 39p Christmas Odds-And-Sods Gravy, from 11p Sneaky Sprouts, from 29p Mincemeat Pudding, from 37p Get the full shopping list HERE. A version of this menu was originally devised and developed for The St Giles Trust Pantry, registered charity number 801355. You can support their vital work by texting PANTRY to 70460 to donate £5. If you like this, you may like my books, and if you purchase them through this neat affiliate link you support me as the author AND support local bookshops too.

Vegan Fake Bake, 90p [Veganish]

In 2019, Greggs (a UK high street bakery chain, for my overseas readers) launched a legendary vegan sausage roll, and I launched half a dozen of them into my face in one week alone. I started to fantasize about an entirely vegan pasty-and-cake shop – which I’m sure exists somewhere – and one thing led to another and I ended up here, with my own vegan version of their famous Steak Bake. I reverse-engineered this by physically dissecting a steak bake or two, then painstakingly recreating it in my kitchen at home. The jackfruit gives the tender meaty filling, the gravy fools your tastebuds into thinking it’s a proper steak bake, and the rest bolsters the flavour. Bisto red gravy granules are the best to use here, and also vegan at the time of writing, but Asda own brand ‘meat gravy granules’ are also vegan too. As with all things, do check the labels carefully, as products are subject to change over time. Makes 4, from 90p each (This post contains affiliate links – I …

Anchoiade Devilled Eggs, 21p

Up until a few weeks ago, I had never had a devilled egg, let alone tried to make one. I had read about them with fascination in various novels, usually set in the American South or housewifely suburbs, passed around as canapes at fictitious afternoon parties by women who lived the kind of lives I could scarcely imagine, peppered with scandal and boredom, kitten heels and daytime martinis. Devilled eggs represented, to me, something otherworldly, something aspirational, something bordering on the celestially obscene. Anchoiade, pronounced an-shoy-ard but very quickly, according to a French youtuber with a voice of clipped velvet with a laugh never far behind, was stumbled across on the Instagram feed of my former Daily Kitchen Live colleague, Matt Tebbutt. A passing mention on a restaurant menu, that I scrawled in a notebook, commenting ‘Oh, anchoiade!’ with hearts for eyes, as though I knew what it was. I didn’t, of course, but I loved the word already, and suspected I would love the thing itself. Weeks later, with a Delia Smith recipe in …

Pangrattato Al Pomodoro, 31p [VEGAN]

Firstly, a confession. This recipe is a twist on an Italian classic, Pappa al Pomodoro, which is essentially a bread-crust and tomato soup, with olive oil, salt and pepper, and sometimes garlic and basil or rosemary, depending on whose recipe you consider to be sacred. This version eschews the traditional, using dried stuffing crumbs to replace the bread and herbs. But Stuffing Crumb And Tomato Puree Soup didn’t seem like a particularly appetising recipe name, so I translated it into Italian as a nod to the original. Serves 1, from 31p, (This post contains affiliate links – I may earn a small commission if you click the links or purchase any products.) First peel and finely slice your onion, and set to one side for a moment. Measure the oil into a heavy-bottomed saucepan, preferably a non-stick one, and warm it for a moment on a medium heat before adding the onion. Season with a little black pepper, and cook for 3-4 minutes, until starting to soften. Quarter your tomatoes and add those too – when …

Cream Of Mushroom Soup, 48p [VEGAN]

I love mushroom soup and have made many of them over the years, but think this one is my best so far. If you don’t have celery to hand, or don’t like it, you can use extra onion. Mushrooms soup traditionally has a splash of wine in it, but I try not to keep it in the house at the moment – if you wanted to add some and it’s the kind of thing you have kicking about, do feel free, but I think it’s perfectly luxurious and delicious without. This cream is a delicate golden colour – or it was when I made it – which is a relief from the minky greys of mushroom soups gone by! I use full fat coconut milk here as you get more bang for your buck, but if you only have the reduced fat version available, double the quantity and reduce the water accordingly. Serves two, from 48p each, (This post contains affiliate links – I may earn a small commission if you click the links or purchase …

Vegan Rainbow Dhansak, 31p

Authentic dhansak recipes that I’ve found sometimes include tamarind sauce or fresh tamarind, which I didn’t have to hand, so I replicated the slightly sour note with a dash of lemon juice instead. I am aware that I am extremely lucky to have found this particular bag of stir fry veg so cheaply, but I am often asked by readers what to do with them that isn’t a stir fry, so when I swagged this one from the markdown chiller today I thought it an ideal opportunity to address this particular conundrum. If you don’t have a similar bargain to hand, you can make similar by adding roughly equal amounts of red and green cabbage, thinly sliced or thickly grated carrot, and some sweetcorn. Or use whatever veg you have to hand, of course. If serving between four, this recipe contains four of your five a day. It keeps in the fridge forum to three days, or in the freezer for three months. Reheat to piping hot before serving – it is not advised to …

Instant Moonshine Mash, Tiny Veg, & Sausages, 58p

Moonshine Mash first appeared in Cooking On A Bootstrap, a bootleg riff on polenta made with potatoes and corn. I so named it because ‘hooch’, or moonshine, is typically made from potatoes or corn, and the idea of my own sneaky irreverent take on something usually considered quite special rather tickled me. This version takes the idea even further into the depths of culinary depravity, firstly by blending canned corn with its brine, with milk, to create a ‘corn milk’ – not dissimilar to the ‘carrot milk’ theory in the carrot cake oats in Tin Can Cook that equally delighted and horrified viewers of Daily Kitchen Live when I demonstrated it in lockdown. I then add instant mash, and the cheapest available variety, to this corn milk abomination, and you know what? It works really well. My son, who can be a frustratingly fussy eater at times, absolutely loved it. The corn gives an underlying sweetness, the skins that get stuck in our teeth are blitzed away to a much more manageable nothing, and the …

Sausage, Bacon & Many-Veg Casserole, 39p

For many reasons, I am returning to a very strict groceries budget for the foreseeable future. Yesterday I went to the supermarket – in two separate trips, as I was on foot with a backpack – with a budget of twenty pounds. I uploaded my receipts on Twitter, but for those of you not on Twitter, I will post them as a separate post here later on. I will try my best – other work and commitments permitting – to write up as many of the new recipes I make from that list of ingredients as possible. This one was made both with the sausages and bacon for my son, and without, for me. Although I am no longer vegan, I do eat more plant based meals than not these days, and as I tighten my budget again, that will continue to be the case. This recipe was originally designed to fulfil five out of five of our five a day, making three portions, but it made such a large pan that I easily got …