The nights are still long, the weather forecast is for a cold snap and I’m looking for comfort food. These individual pies pack a punch with flavour and are full of goodness, exactly what is needed for the long January nights. The original recipe is from Tesco’s Real Food magazine and can be found here: http://realfood.tesco.com/recipes/individual-squash-and-feta-pot-pies.html
2 red onions, cut into wedges
1kg (2Ib) butternut squash, cut into small chunks
1 red chilli, seeded and chopped
3-4 sprigs thyme, leaves picked
2 tablespoon olive oil
200g baby spinach Seasonal ingredient
1 x 200g pack feta, crumbled
handful flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1 x 375g pack ready-rolled puff pastry
1 egg, beaten
- Preheat the oven to gas 6, 200°C, fan 180°C. Put the onions, squash, chilli and thyme in a large roasting tin. Drizzle with the oil and season well. Roast for 35-40 minutes, until tender. Set aside to cool a little.
- Fill a kettle with fresh water and boil. Put the spinach in a colander set over the sink and pour over the boiling water to wilt. Refresh under the cold tap, then squeeze out as much excess water as possible. Tip the spinach onto a board and roughly chop.
- Add the spinach, feta and parsley to the squash mixture and toss to combine; season to taste. Divide the mixture between 4 x 300ml (1/2pt) pie dishes, adding 1 tbsp of water to each. Unroll the pastry and cut out 4 lids, one to fit each pie dish; set aside. Press the pastry trimmings round the rim of each dish and brush with beaten egg. Top each pie with a pastry lid, crimp to seal, and brush all over with the beaten egg. Make a small steam hole in the centre of each.
- Arrange the pies on a baking tray and cook for 25-30 minutes, until puffed and golden. Serve immediately.
I can’t believe how well these muffins turned out. To be honest, I’m not really a fan of muffins, either sweet or savoury. I made them for C, but when they came out of the oven, they smelt so good. I just had to try one. And well, I have been converted; this recipe has changed my whole attitude to muffins! These ones are cheesy, spicy and extremely comforting. This is a stunning recipe from Jamie Oliver’s new Superfoods book. I’ve been really impressed by the Superfood series on TV, not just by the ‘superfood’ concept but by the number of recipes I actually want to make. I’ve also made the tofu burgers which may sound boring, but were fantastic. Kudos to Jamie Oliver.
600g sweet potatoes or ½ a butternut squash (I used butternut squash)
4 spring onions
1-2 fresh red chillies
6 large free-range eggs
3 tablespoons cottage cheese
250g wholemeal self-raising flour
50g Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon sunflower seeds
1 tablespoon poppy seeds
- Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas 4.
- Line a 12-hole muffin tin with paper cases or 15cm folded squares of greaseproof paper, then lightly wipe each one with oiled kitchen paper.
- Peel the sweet potatoes or squash and coarsely grate into a large bowl.
- Trim the spring onions, then finely slice with the chilli and add to the bowl, reserving half the chilli to one side.
- Crack in the eggs, add the cottage cheese and flour, then finely grate in most of the Parmesan and season with sea salt and black pepper. Mix until nicely combined.
- Evenly divide the muffin mixture between the cases.
- Sprinkle over the sunflower and poppy seeds, then dot over the reserved slices of chilli. Use the remaining Parmesan to give a light dusting of cheese over each one.
- Bake at the bottom of the oven for 45 to 50 minutes (if using squash, it’ll be a bit quicker – check after 35 minutes), or until golden and set.
These are amazing served warm 5 minutes after taking them out of the oven, and good kept in the fridge for a couple of days.