Tomato, caramelised onion and mascarpone tart

I’m not quite ready to let go of summer just yet, so here we go with this lovely tomato tart. The combination of the sweetness of the mascarpone and the caramelised onions with the zestiness of the tomatoes is really lovely. I had some beautiful heritage tomatoes for this, and recommend that you get them ripe and full of flavour! This tart goes perfectly with some green salad on the side, and believe me you will be reaching for seconds.

More with tomatoes: Watermelon, Tomato and Halloumi salad | Rachel Roddy’s Penne all’arrabbiata

Tomato, caramelised onion and mascarpone tart

Tomato, caramelised onion and mascarpone tart

Serves 4 | Prep 40 mins | Cook 50 mins
Easy | Vegetarian

You’ll need:

  • Extra-virgin olive oil for frying and drizzling;
  • 2 red onions, thinly sliced;
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar;
  • 250g mascarpone;
  • Finely grated zest and juice 1 lemon;
  • 4-5 fresh rosemary sprigs, leaves picked and finely chopped;
  • 4 spring onions, finely chopped;
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed;
  • 320g ready-rolled all-butter puff pastry sheet;
  • 500g tomatoes (a mix of colours and sizes), halved or quartered;
  • A few fresh thyme sprigs, leaves picked.

Heat a large frying pan with a glug of oil over a medium heat. Add the red onions and fry for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the sugar and cook for a further 10 minutes until sticky and caramelised.

In a medium mixing bowl, beat the mascarpone with the lemon juice and zest, rosemary, spring onions and garlic. Season. Heat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan/gas 6.


Unroll the pastry onto a baking sheet. Spread with the mascarpone, leaving a 2-3cm border. Top with the red onions, then the tomatoes and a little thyme. Drizzle over a little oil, season, then bake for 25 minutes. Turn the oven to 170°C/150°C/gas 3½. Bake for 20-25 minutes until the tomatoes have shrivelled and the pastry is golden. Replace any burnt thyme leaves with fresh and serve warm.

Original recipe from Delicious Magazine, issue August 2014, available online here.

Chipotle black bean chilli with guacamole

This is a lovely recipe for a quick and easy vegetarian meal. I love the smoky flavour of chipotle chillies and they work perfectly in this black bean chilli.   I’ve made some subtle changes to the original recipe from Delicious magazine – using ground cumin instead of cumin seeds and not adding milk to the chilli (though if you don’t like heat then do add 2 tbsp milk when adding in the vinegar).

Serve with rice and/or tortilla wraps, sour cream and grated cheese on the side.

More with beans: Emilia’s Bulgarian Bean Soup | Speedy Pepper & Black Bean ChilliSummer Pork, Fennel and Beans

Chipotle black bean chilli with guacamole


Serves 4 | Prep 5 mins | Cook 35 mins
Easy | Vegan | Gluten and Dairy free

You’ll need:

  • 1 tsp ground paprika;
  • 1 tbsp ground cumin;
  • 1 tbsp olive oil;
  • 1 red onion, finely sliced;
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed;
  • 2 tbsp chipotle paste or 1 dried chipotle chilli, left whole;
  • 2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes;
  • 1 tsp red wine vinegar;
  • Pinch of sugar;
  • 2 x 400g cans black beans, drained and rinsed;
  • 1 lime, quartered, to serve;

For the guacamole

  • 2 ripe avocados;
  • Juice of 1 lime;
  • 1 red chilli, finely chopped;
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh coriander, plus extra to garnish.

Toast the paprika and cumin seeds in a dry frying pan for 2-3 minutes until fragrant, then set aside.

Heat the oil in a large pan over a low-medium heat, then fry the onion for 7-8 minutes until soft. Stir in the garlic, then cook for 1 minute. Add the toasted spices, chipotle paste/whole chilli, tomatoes, vinegar and sugar. Season, bring to the boil, then simmer, covered, for 20 minutes.

For the guacamole, peel and stone the avocados, then mash with a fork and mix with the lime juice. Stir through the chilli and coriander.

Remove the lid and add the beans. Continue to simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes, then serve with the soured cream, guacamole and lime wedges.

Original recipe from Delicious Magazine, issue June 2013, available online here.

Sticky Pork Bibimbap

Bibimbap is a traditional Korean rice dish which is just so tasty! I always thought it would be complicated to make but having given it a go at home it’s actually quite simple. It is a little faffy as you need to cook all the ingredients one by one, one after another but even so – it’s rather quick to do. I marinated my pork for a few hrs before cooking, but if you don’t have time to do that, just prepare the marinade first and marinade the pork while you are preparing and cooking the rest of the ingredients. I got the recipe from an old issue of Delicious magazine and have ever so slightly adapted it in places. Hope you enjoy!

You can get Gochujang paste (it’s a Korean chilli paste) from most Asian supermarkets.

More with Gochujang: Japanese inspired tuna burgers and togarashi fries

Sticky Pork Bibimbap


Serves 4 | Prep 30 mins| Cook 30 mins
A little effort | Dairy Free

You’ll need:

  • 400g boneless pork belly, skin removed, chopped to bite size cubes;
  • 1-2 tbsp rapeseed (or vegetable oil), plus extra for frying the eggs;
  • 2 carrots, cut into matchsticks;
  • 3 medium onions, sliced;
  • 150g beansprouts;
  • 150g oyster or shiitake mushrooms, sliced;
  • 200g spinach;
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame oil;
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce;
  • 1 tbsp agave syrup (or honey);
  • 400g short-grain rice;
  • 2 spring onions, sliced diagonally;
  • 1/2 cucumber, sliced into thin strips;
  • kimchi, to serve;
  • white and black sesame seeds, to serve.

For the Gochujang sauce:

  • 4 tbsp gochujang paste;
  • 4 tbsp toasted sesame oil;
  • 4 tbsp soy sauce;
  • 2 garlic cloves;
  • 2 tbsp agave syrup (or honey)

First mix the gochujang sauce. Mix all sauce ingredients together and add around 3/4 of the sauce to a large bowl, reserving the rest. Add the pork and stir to coat well. Cover with cling film and leave to marinade for a few hrs or while you are preparing the rest of the ingredients.

To cook the bibimbap, heat 1 tbsp of the rapeseed or vegetable oil in a large wok. Stir-fry the carrots until they begin to soften. Add 1/2 tsp of each the sesame oil, soy sauce and agave syrup/honey. Cook over a high heat for 1 minute, then transfer to a plate using a slotted spoon. Then one vegetable at a time, cook the onions for 2 minutes and  beansprouts, mushrooms and spinach for 1 minute each, each time adding 1/2 tsp of the sesame oil, soy sauce and agave syrup/honey. Add more rapeseed oil as you go if needed. Set aside in separate bowls.

In the same wok, stir-fry the pork in its sauce for 20 minutes or until  cooked through. The gochujang sauce should reduce and caramelise a little to intensify the flavour. Meanwhile, cook the rice according to the packet instructions.

Finally when the pork and rice are ready, heat a little oil in a clean frying pan and fry the eggs to your liking (should take about 3-4 minutes for a runny yolk). While the eggs are cooking, start assembling your bimbibap.

Divide the warm rice between 4 bowl evenly, then divide the onions on top. Add the remaining cooked vegetables, pork, cucumber and kimchi into little piles around the bowl. Finally top with the fired egg. Sprinkle over spring onions and sesame seeds and serve straight away.


Adapted from a delicious magazine recipe “Jina’s Bibimbap” issue June 2013, no longer available online.



Salted caramel cheesecake

I’m not a big fan of Christmas pudding or Trifles, so I always go a bit ‘untraditional’ when it comes to Christmas dinner dessert. It’s actually often a cheesecake because you can make them in advance, they aren’t fussy to do and are usually delicious. This Salted Caramel Cheesecake from Delicious Magazine was particularly lush! It’s a perfect dessert for any occasion and though I find baked cheesecakes, to be particularly comforting at winter time.

Salted caramel cheesecake

Serves 10 – 12 | Prep 40 minutes | Cook 1.5 hrs | Requires overnight resting
A little effort

Photo by Sarah Ahmad

You’ll need:

  • Oil for greasing

For the base:

  • 250g dark chocolate digestive biscuits;
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder;
  • 60g unsalted butter, melted.

For the filling:

  • 600g full-fat cream cheese;
  • 300ml soured cream;
  • 397g tin Carnation Caramel;
  • flaked sea salt, to taste;
  • 2 medium eggs;
  • 3 egg yolks.

For the Caramel Glaze:

  • 100g caster sugar;
  • 75ml double cream;
  • 25g salted butter;
  • flaked sea salt, to taste.

Preheat the oven to 160°C/fan140°C/gas 3. Lightly oil a 20cm loose-bottomed cake tin. Whizz the biscuits and cocoa to fine crumbs in a food processor. Add the butter and whizz until the mixture has the texture of wet sand, then press into the bottom of the cake tin. Chill the base while you make the filling.

For the filling, whip the cream cheese, soured cream and caramel in a large bowl. Add sea salt to taste. Lightly beat in the eggs and yolks until smooth, then pour on top of the biscuit base. Smooth the top, then bake for 1¼-1½ hours until the cheesecake is cooked but still has a good wobble in the middle. Don’t worry if it puffs up and cracks a bit – it will sink back down as it cools.

When cooked, take the cheesecake out of the oven and leave to cool in the tin for 45 minutes, then remove from the tin and chill overnight.

Photo by Sarah Ahmad

Just before serving, make the glaze. Put the sugar in a heavy-based frying pan over a low heat and melt, without stirring, until it turns a rich red caramel colour. Add the cream and butter, stirring constantly (be careful in case it spits) until combined. Leave to cool for a few minutes, stirring often. Add a little salt to taste if you like.

To serve, drizzle the caramel over the top, then cut into wedges.

Photo by Sarah Ahmad

Original recipe from Delicious magazine, issue Christmas 2013, available online here.

Malaysian-style chicken

My partner’s sister was in Cambodia recently and brought us back some fantastic spices and ingredients from there. Lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, chilies… So we’ve been looking at ways to use them all up while they are fresh, before we dry the rest up. This recipe was perfect for this as it used all three of the above mentioned ingredients! And it was a really delicious curry too. Serve simply with fluffy white rice, this makes for a superb midweek dinner when you have a bit more time to cook. Saying that, it’s really waiting that you’ll need to have time for as the chicken will pretty much cook itself once you put it on. I’ve not changed much from the original recipe, apart from allowing a bit more time for the chicken to cook but you can adjust depending on the size of chicken thighs you use. I’ve also missed out a couple of ingredients because I found the sauce perfect without the addition of extra sugar and fish sauce.

Malaysian-style chicken

Serves 4 | Prep 15 mins | Cook 40 mins
Easy |Gluten and Dairy-Free


You’ll need

  • Vegetable oil;
  • 8 free-range chicken thighs;
  • 1 onion, chopped;
  • 3 garlic cloves;
  • 4 medium-hot red chillies;
  • 1 lemongrass stalk, tough outer leaves removed, inner core sliced;
  • 1 tbsp ground ginger;
  • Groundnut oil;
  • ½ tsp ground turmeric;
  • 1 cinnamon stick;
  • 2 star anise;
  • 5 kaffir lime leaves;
  • 400ml coconut milk;
  • 100ml chicken stock.

Heat a little vegetable oil in a frying pan and fry the chicken thighs, skin-side down, until the skin is crisp and golden. Remove the chicken and set aside.

Whizz the onion, garlic cloves, chillies, lemongrass, ginger and a good glug of groundnut oil. Fry this paste in the pan over a medium heat for 2 minutes, add the turmeric, cinnamon stick, star anise and kaffir lime leaves, then fry for 3 minutes.

Stir in the coconut milk and chicken stock, sit the chicken thighs in the pan, skin-side up, and simmer for 25-30 minutes until the chicken is just cooked and the sauce has reduced. Serve with rice on the side.

Original recipe from Delicious magazine, available online here.