Amazingly Simple Avocado Pesto

So this recipe has been a long time in the making. I’ve been desperate to perfect it and I think I’ve just about nailed it!

A slightly different twist on a classic recipe… I like mine mixed into wholemeal pasta with chicken, cherry toms, spinach and mushrooms… with a snowstorm of extra parmesan on top (ohhhh yeaaaaah).

If you want to mix it in to additional ingredients, mix it in cold after you’ve cooked everything through and turned the heat off just before serving. Deeeelish!

It should also keep in the fridge for 2-3 days, so I always make extra for lunch another day #adulting. 

Amazingly Simple Avocado Pesto

A novel take on an old classic
Prep Time10 mins
Total Time10 mins
Servings: 2

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch of basil approx 30g including stalks
  • 1 large clove of garlic
  • 30 g pine nuts
  • 20 g parmesan add more if you like it cheesy
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 1 medium avocado
  • Salt and pepper

Instructions

  • Toast your pine nuts in a dry pan until golden brown
  • Add everything except the avocado into a food processor and whiz until smooth
  • Season with salt and pepper to taste
  • Add in the avocado and blitz until smooth - depending on how big your avo is, you may need to add slightly more parmesan, lemon and garlic - but these quantities feel just about right to me!
  • Dollop onto some steaming pasta, sprinkle on extra parmesan and enjoy!
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The World’s Most Comforting Cider Sausage Bake

So my lovelies, this little wonder of a recipe came to me for two reasons. 

  1. I had an epic sausage breakfast at the weekend and had 4 Cumberland sausages in the fridge to use
  2. I DESPERATELY needed carbs (cold, long, rainy day in London… need I say more?)

So I was trundling back from a doctors appointment in the rain, thinking, what am I going to do with those damn sausages. I wandered into Sainsbury’s and on offer right in front of me were cans of hipster cider. Some call it fate, I’d call it a divine (literally) intervention! 

So I wandered round, picked up some crème fraîche, some cheese and a leek and decided to head back to my teeny kitchen and see what I could rustle up. 

Sometimes I do impress myself, and this to be quite honest with you is one of those times. Never have I had such sensational results from a first time recipe. But anyway, enough of my ramblings…

Ladies and gentlefolk, may I present to you… the world’s most comforting cider sausage bake.*

*1 out of 1 Millies that tasted this meal agreed. 

The World's Most Comforting Cider Sausage Bake

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time35 mins
Total Time45 mins
Servings: 4

Ingredients

  • 1 large red onion finely chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic finely chopped
  • 1 large leek finely chopped
  • 4 large cumberland sausages chopped into bite size chunks
  • 250 g bacon lardons
  • 330 ml apple cider
  • 250 ml vegetable stock
  • 2 tsp wholegrain dijon mustard
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 small chopped courgette
  • 5 chopped closed cup mushroom
  • A handfull of cherry tomatoes
  • 150 ml crème fraîche
  • Cheddar cheese for sprinkling or any cheese of your choice

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 180C.
  • Soften the onion in a pan on a low heat for 5 minutes, then add the garlic and cook for a further two.
  • Add the leek and the sausages. Cook on a low heat browning the sausages for 5 minutes.
  • Add in the lardons and cook for a further two minutes, before adding the cider, stock, mustard and vinegar.
  • Add in the pasta and simmer for 10 minutes on a low heat until most of the liquid has reduced and the pasta is al dente. You may need to add water as it simmers, depending on how big your pan is.
  • Add in the courgette, tomatoes and the mushrooms and cook for a further 2 minutes.
  • Stir through the creme fraiche and transfer to an oven proof dish. Sprinkle with cheese and bake for 15 minutes.
  • Dish up and devour!
P.S. I made so much of this that I have enough left over to take to work tomorrow #winning #adulting

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Brilliant Bolognese

Bolognese traditionalists LOOK AWAY NOW!

This little number is my tried and tested recipe for the most brilliant bolognese (even if I do say so myself!). It’s a stable in my diet, and I’ve been having it for years with pasta, in stuffed peppers, on baked sweet potatoes… really the list of accompaniments is endless – partly why it’s so brilliant. 

It’s also packed full of veggies, which makes it technically healthy whilst being the most warming comfort food ever!

So buckle up, be excited and get stuck in team.

Brilliant Bolognese

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time1 hr
Total Time1 hr 10 mins
Servings: 2
Author: Millie

Ingredients

  • 1 red onion
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 250 g lean mince
  • 500 ml passata
  • 200 ml water
  • 1 beef stock cube
  • 1 tsp tomato purée
  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp finely chopped fresh chilli
  • 1/2 tsp onion granules
  • 1/2 tsp garlic salt
  • 1 red pepper finely sliced
  • 2 handfulls of chopped mushrooms
  • 1 carrot peeled, finely sliced into circles and then quartered
  • 1 small courgette
  • A handfull of cherry toms
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 glass of red wine - optional
  • Parmesan

Instructions

  • Soften the red onion, fresh chilli and garlic cloves in a pan, before adding the mince. Cook for 1-2 minutes until browned.
  • Add the passata, tomato puree, stock cube, balsamic, onion granules and garlic salt to the pan and simmer for 5-10 minutes. Season well with salt and pepper.
  • Add the water (the red wine if using) and all of the veg (except the cherry toms) and simmer on a low heat, stirring regularly for 35-40 minutes.
  • In the meantime cook whichever accompaniment you've decided to go with.
  • Add the cherry toms to the mix, and simmer on a low heat for 10 minutes. You may want to add a bit more water at this point if the sauce is drying.
  • Dollop a big spoonful onto your pasta/potato/pepper, sprinkle with a good dose of parmesan and enjoy!
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Sweet Potato and Butternut Squash Soup

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It’s soup seassoooonnnn… And apparently flu season! So I’ve decided to celebrate both by making soup with the flu!

This cheeky little number is the perfect winter warmer. I added chilli to mine and it’s warmed me so much I can’t tell if my nose is running because of the chilli, or just because I’m ill *horrified emoji face*

It’s really simple and easy to make. If you’re a vegan, leave out the creme fraiche or substitute with coconut milk if you want to keep the creaminess 🙂

Sweet Potato and Butternut Squash Soup

A perfect winter warming soup!
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time1 hr
Servings: 1
Author: MillieMunch

Ingredients

  • Half a butternut squash peeled and deseeded
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 red onion
  • 2 garlic cloves thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp chilli powder or half a fresh chilli optional
  • 500 ml hot vegetable stock
  • 2 tbsp crème fraîche plus more to serve

Instructions

  • 1) Heat oven to 180C.
  • 2) Cut the squash into medium sized cubes, about 2cm across, then place on a baking tray drizzled with olive oil. Roast until soft (this should take 20 minutes). Don't let the edges catch, if they start browning remove from the oven.
  • 3) While the squash cooks, fry the onion, garlic (and fresh chilli if using) in the butter and olive oil until soft. Do this on a low heat for about the same amount of time you roast the squash for.
  • 4) Chop and dice the sweet potato while the squash and onions are cooking.
  • 5) Once the onions and garlic have softened add the squash, sweet potato, stock and crème fraîche into the pan. Season with salt and pepper.
  • 6) Cook until the squash and sweet potato become soft and begin to break down, and then blend until smooth.
  • 7) Pop into a bowl and enjoy!

Notes

I used a nutribullet to blend my soup, but this will work with any sort of blender, including a stick blender.
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Stir Fried Vegetable Quinoa and Sun Dried Tomato Roasted Cod

Stir Fried Vegetable Quinoa and Sun Dried Tomato Roasted Cod

Tonight’s tea, stir fried vegetable quinoa with sun dried tomato roasted cod. A protein rich meal packed with essential vitamins, minerals, omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants… AND it was really easy to make. Not the most attractive meal, mainly because I was too hungry to faff around with presentation and my camera for too long!

Stir Fried Vegetable Quinoa and Sun Dried Tomato Roasted Cod

Prep Time20 mins
Servings: 1

Ingredients

What you need for the quinoa

  • 60 g of quinoa pre-boiled per person
  • 1 stick of celery
  • 5 cherry tomatoes
  • 1/2 a red pepper
  • 1/2 a courgette zucchini
  • 1 tbsp raisins
  • 2 tbsp Food Doctor savour seed blend or any seeds of your choice
  • Salt & pepper
  • A few sprigs of fresh coriander
  • Pinch of sumac

What you need for the fish

  • 200 g chopped tomatoes
  • 3 sun dried tomatoes
  • 1 fillet of cod or any white fish
  • Pinch of Paprika
  • Small chunk of feta cheese
  • Salt & pepper

Instructions

To make the quinoa

  • Pop the quinoa on to boil (usually for 20 minutes, but check cooking instructions on the back of the packet). At the same time lightly fry whatever veg. Once lightly cooked take it off the head. Drain the quinoa and stir in the veg. Stir in the raisins and the seeds and season with salt, pepper, fresh coriander and a sprinkle of sumac.

To make the fish

  • Lightly season the fish, and pop all the ingredients into an oven dish. Sprinkled over some paprika to give it a kick and bake it in the oven at 190C for 10 minutes. I then crumbled some feta on top and returned to the oven for a further 5 mins.

A quick and easy 20 minute meal, that’s not only tasty but actually really good for you!

Enjoy, Millie xx

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