All posts tagged: strong cheese

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 …

Sausagne, 43p [Cooking On A Bootstrap]

Making lasagne is an arse. A labour of love. An every-pan atrocity strewn around the desolate wasteland of what was formerly your kitchen. I have made dozens of lasagnes in my short lifetime, and halfway through every single one comes the moment, without fail, whereby I survey the three pans on the hob, the piles of everything, the crap strewn across every available worksurface and some of the not-available ones, too, and I wail inside that I could have just bought one for less than a quid at the supermarket. One night, craving lasagne but not the work that went with it, I threw this together, and the Sausagne was born. I’m not suggesting for a minute that it is an exact substitute but, my, it ticks all the soft, cheesy, comforting, gooey boxes, and with far less washing up. (This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you click the …

Carrot Fritters, 23p [A Year In 120 Recipes]

I love a fritter, especially as a cheeky, sneaky way to make veggies fun for the kids. What better than something that small hands can pick up and dip into a sauce, then cram into little mouths? Frying veg with cheese isn’t an every-night-of-the-week option, but it’s certainly an enjoyable way to do your vegetables. I make a simple zingy lemon and yoghurt dip for the small ones, and stir cumin into mine as an afterthought. Serves 4, from 23p each. This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you click the links or purchase any ingredients. All prices correct at the time of printing and are subject to change. 4 large carrots, 17p (43p/1kg) 1 onion, 5p (54p/1kg) 1 egg, 15p (89p/6 medium free range) 2 rounded tablespoons flour, 1p (45p/1.5kg) 50g hard, strong cheese, 47p (£1.88/200g) salt and pepper oil for frying, 6p (£1.10/1l) First grate the carrots. Then, …

Mushroom Mac ‘n’ Cheese, 42p [from ‘Veganish’]

This is one of my favourite comfort meals, quick to assemble, using ingredients that I generally have kicking about the house, and can just be slung in the oven and forgotten about, left to slowly pull itself together in a haze of blissful creamy soft salty rich glorious goodness. I’ve just polished off my second bowl of it, and frankly, it’s too good not to share with you all, so here it is. It’s easy to make it vegan – replace the hard strong cheese and mozzarella with Violife or something similar, and the milk with coconut or almond or soya milk, depending on what you prefer. It’s easy to throw together, and the reward of a deep bowl of melting goodness far outweighs the minimal effort involved in making it. I consider this an essential part of my repertoire these days, and barely a week goes by without it. It freezes beautifully, too, so do double the recipe and sling some of it to one side for a lazy day. Serves three people, or …

Firecracker Sausages With Tragedy Mash, 61p [A Girl Called Jack]

‘If you ever see me eating sweet potato mash out of a saucepan, you know it’s bad news’, is a phrase that most of my friends are familiar with. Sweet potato mash with chilli and cheese is my go-to tragedy food, spooned straight from the saucepan whilst watching many a re-run of old sitcoms and new comedies. It’s simple, sweet, quick and comforting. Here I’ve topped it with another favourite – firecracker sausages, which work just as well with veggie sausages! If the double chilli hit is too much, eliminate it from the sausages but keep it in the mash. The quantities given here are easily doubled to make this for two people, because misery loves company, after all. Serves 2 from 61p each. This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you click the links or purchase any ingredients. All prices correct at the time of printing and are subject …

Kale Pesto, 12p [A Year In 120 Recipes]

I knocked together this kale pesto after I found a bag of dark green leafy goodness in the reduced chiller in the supermarket, blitzed it in the blender with some other bits and blogged about it, and was inundated with kale chips and in-jokes from friends for months afterwards, including a full-page monstering in the Daily Mail by that bastion of healthy living, Richard Littlejohn, who claimed that ‘poor people don’t eat pasta, they eat spaghetti from tins’. Far be it from me to point out that spaghetti in tins is actually pasta, not to mention that kale was originally grown as cattle food, and that people in all sorts of circumstances do actually eat their greens! So if you fancy a side order of controversy with your lunch, fling this lot into a blender and feel suitably mollified that you might be doing something cheap and healthy, and irritating the Daily Mail in the process. Makes 12 portions from 12p each . This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that …

Courgette, Tomato & Cheese Gratin, 34p [A Girl Called Jack]

This recipe from my microwave series is based on a recipe from my book, A Girl Called Jack, that I see popping up on my Twitter feed and Facebook pages time and time again – it seems to be a definite favourite among my lovely readers! And so, I wondered if it was possible to make a portable microwave version, either for busy evenings, energy saving cooking, or even to pop into a jar in your work bag to stave off the boredom of yet another soggy cheese sandwich or expensive takeaway lunch. The microwave version has fewer ingredients than the original, oven-bake recipe – trying to keep it simple. I’ll also confess that I’ve made it with a few different rices as an experiment; although the simple basic 45p-a-kilo white rice will always be my go-to budget staple, this dish IS delicious with nutty brown rice too, if it’s the kind of thing you keep in the cupboard, and if not then don’t worry about it. (This post is not sponsored; I provide links …

Jack Monroe, ITV This Morning

Cauli Mac-N-Cheese [A Year In 120 Recipes]

This is part mac ‘n’ cheese, part cauliflower cheese, and deliciously golden and moreish with some crispy bacon thrown in for good measure. Baking it at the end to melt the cheese isn’t essential, but oh, it’s so good. It’s a quicker method than the traditional ‘melt some butter and flour to make a roux then thin with a little milk’ – but with pretty much the same end results. You know me, I like to keep things simple, but if the thought of not making a ‘real white sauce’ distresses you, then melt a tablespoon of butter over a low heat with a scant level tablespoon of flour, mix well to form a thick paste, thin with a little milk, stir until smooth, add more milk, toss in the cheese, melt, and remove from the heat and set to one side until you need the saucy bit. I find (personally) that the eggs thicken the mixture and a good whack in the oven finishes it off, but hey, there’s many roads up the mountain …

Cauli & Bacon ‘Carbonara’

This is part spaghetti carbonara, part cauliflower cheese – and deliciously golden and moreish. Baking it at the end to melt the cheese isn’t essential, but does lift it to a better place. Using hard, strong cheese means that you don’t need very much of it, a trick I use quite often. I mean, what is the point of mild cheddar other than for kids packed lunches? (Serves 2) 150g spaghetti 1 tbsp oil 100g cauliflower, broken into small florets 100g streaky bacon, chopped 2 eggs 100ml milk Black pepper 30g hard strong cheese, grated Bring a medium saucepan of water to the boil. Add the spaghetti and reduce to a simmer. Meanwhile, gently heat the oil in a large saucepan, then add the cauliflower and bacon. In a separate bowl, beat together the eggs, milk and pepper. Add a few tablespoons of the pasta cooking water and beat in. When the pasta is al dente, drain it and add to the pan with the cauliflower and bacon. Pour in the egg mixture and mix …

Red Lentil Bolognese [A Girl Called Jack]

This meat-free Bolognese sauce is perfect over a bowl of pasta and topped with a handful of grated cheese. Allow 70 to 100g of dried pasta per person. I like to eat mine with some garlic bread as well, to mop up any leftover sauce. (This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you click the links and make a purchase.) Serves 2 1 onion 1 clove of garlic 1 carrot 1 tablespoon oil a fistful of fresh thyme a fistful of fresh parsley 1 vegetable stock cube 50ml red wine 1 x 400g carton or tin of chopped tomatoes 100g dried brown or red lentils, rinsed optional: 2 tablespoons tomato purée or tomato ketchup, to thicken the sauce grated strong hard cheese, to serve Peel and slice the onion, peel and crush the garlic, and put both into a large sauté or non-stick frying pan. Wash the carrot then grate …