Crispy Baked Mussels on the Half Shell

I have written previously on the merits of mussels. This is a fun party dish that combines the elegance of steaming in white wine with the fun of a crisp canapé. It works best with large mussels because you are cooking them twice, thereby reducing the risk of overcooking. But of course, you don’t alwaysContinue reading “Crispy Baked Mussels on the Half Shell”

Chicken, Chorizo & Swiss Chard Phyllo Bundles with an Avocado and Tomato Salsa

A lovely light dinner or exciting first course, these crispy bundles really deliver on taste and texture. If serving these as a first course, divide the filling into 6 and use one sheet of pastry per person for 6 bundles, using unchanged quantities of everything else. If you haven’t got any cooked chicken to hand,Continue reading “Chicken, Chorizo & Swiss Chard Phyllo Bundles with an Avocado and Tomato Salsa”

Oven-Baked Falafel with Tahini Yogurt Sauce

A lighter, make-at-home version of the classic Middle Eastern street food. Whip this up on a weeknight, or save and make for a party snack – either way, you’ll have some pretty excited eaters on your hands. The suggested accompaniments may seem like a strange combination, but they really work together so please give itContinue reading “Oven-Baked Falafel with Tahini Yogurt Sauce”

Roasted Tomato Bruschetta

Slow-roasting the tomatoes really concentrates their flavour and makes them much sweeter than the sundried tomatoes you get from a jar. A taste of summer even in colder climes. Feeds 2 – 4 Ingredients 200g cherry tomatoes Olive oil Salt and pepper 4 slices of sourdough or other rustic Italian-style bread 1 clove of garlic,Continue reading “Roasted Tomato Bruschetta”

Mini Chicken, Bacon, Leek & Chestnut Pies

These pies just say Christmas! Big enough to be generous, but small enough for a party snack, if I saw a plate of these beauties any time over the festive period, I would instantly know I was welcome. If homemade shortcrust pastry isn’t your thing, you can buy pre-made shortcrust pastry in most grocery stores.Continue reading “Mini Chicken, Bacon, Leek & Chestnut Pies”

Sugar & Spiced Nuts

These nuts are the perfect standby nibble. Pile onto a cheese board and pair with a salty cheese such as stilton or chèvre, or pop a bowl of these on the counter when hungry people begin to hover. Better still, these make a fabulous edible gift. I have provided instructions for making your own ChristmasContinue reading “Sugar & Spiced Nuts”

We Should All Be Eating Mussels

Mussels are one of my absolute favourite things to eat. They were actually the first thing I ever cooked for my (now) husband. He was dead impressed – and you will be, too. In addition to being really delicious, mussels have so much going for them. They’re cheap, elegant, easy and quick to cook, lowContinue reading “We Should All Be Eating Mussels”

Chicken Tikka Marsala Triangles

Not to be confused with Chicken Tikka Masala. Chicken Tikka Masala given a festive – and inauthentic – twist with Christmassy flavours: booze, dried fruit and nuts. Very festive, indeed. Folded into a crisp phyllo shell, it’s the perfect party appetizer. Makes about 40 pieces Ingredients 2 tbsp butter 1 tbsp olive oil 1.5 cupsContinue reading “Chicken Tikka Marsala Triangles”

Fig, Goat’s Cheese and Prosciutto Bundles with a Rosemary, Honey & Brandy Glaze

Fairly described as a TASTE EXPLOSION. Make these and pretend you’re the guy from Love Actually who hopelessly uses “Taste Explosion?” as a pick-up line. If you’re unsuccessful, at least you’ll have more of these for yourself. Makes 18 pieces Ingredients 9 Dried figs Goat’s cheese 6 Slices prosciutto Rosemary Honey Brandy (port or sherryContinue reading “Fig, Goat’s Cheese and Prosciutto Bundles with a Rosemary, Honey & Brandy Glaze”

Smoked Mackerel Pâté with Yorkshire Pudding

If you really want to impress this year, this is the one. Use my make-ahead tips below and you’ll be amazed at how effortlessly you can pull together this showstopper of an appetizer. If you can’t get smoked mackerel, smoked trout works beautifully. Feeds 4 Ingredients For the pâté: 180g (2 fillets) of smoked mackerelContinue reading “Smoked Mackerel Pâté with Yorkshire Pudding”