21 January 2012

Getting out of a lunch rut with DIY veg pots!

Sorry that it's a bit late, but Happy New Year everyone! We moved into our first house just before Christmas, to say that it's all consuming is a bit of an understatement. I haven't had much time to cook properly & as for baking, well lets just say that me & my new oven are still getting to know one another! It's quite scary that you only view a house a couple of times then put in an offer to spend the most amount of money you're ever likely to spend. Once you get in you realise that maybe you were originally looking through slightly rose tinted glasses. Don't get me wrong I love our new house, but once it's stripped of all contents only then do you see it warts & all. It's these unexpected (slightly costly!) warts that have led me to the creation for this weeks post.

I find winter lunches a bit of a nightmare, salads just don't cut it in the cold, sandwiches are ok but not everyday & since Christmas I think I've eaten enough soup to fill a paddling pool! I really like the look of all the new types of veg & stew pots available in the supermarket, but at £3-£4 a pop they hardly make for a frugal lunch?

So with a mountain of tuperware at my disposal I thought I'd create my own 'Hodge Pots'! I made 2 different types, but the great thing is they both start with pretty much the same base ingredients. We have...

Rich Ratatouille with Cous Cous

Chilli Bean & Quorn Sausage Stew with Rice. I'm not a veggie, but I like these quorn sausages as they're low in fat, high in protein & not as rich as meaty ones.


For the ratatouille you need:

1 onion
1 pepper
1 aubergine
1 courgette
Handful of chopped mushrooms
Squeeze of garlic puree
Can of chopped tomatoes
Veggie stock cube & a dash of water
Squeeze of tomato puree
Handful of chopped basil
Plain cous cous made up with veggie stock

Roughly chop all the veggies & fry with a little olive oil & garlic until soft. Add the tomatoes & puree, stock cube, water & basil. Mix well & allow to simmer for around 30 minutes until the veggies are lovely & soft & the sauce has thickened up. I layered the ratatouille in a pot with the seasoned cous cous.

For the Chilli bean stew you need:

1 onion
1 pepper
1 courgette
Handful of chopped mushrooms
Squeeze of garlic puree
6 quorn sausages, chopped into chunks
Can of mixed beans in mild chilli sauce (I use Sainsbury)
Can of chopped tomatoes
Veggie stock cube
Squeeze of tomato puree
Mild chilli powder to taste

Again, start by roughly chopping all the veggies, then fry with a little olive oil & garlic until soft. Add the tomatoes & puree, stock cube, beans with sauce. Mix well then taste the sauce, I added an extra 2tsps of mild chilli powder to give it a little more kick. Cover & leave to simmer for around 20 minutes. This one I layered in a pot with cooked rice.

Both are delicious, warming & filling for winter days & by my reckoning work out at around £1 per pot - bargain! Let me know if you have a recipe idea for a lunch pot? Till next time, Rebecca x

P.S. As well as a new house, we also have a new addition to the family....completely gratuitous video of our new cat, but I hope it'll raise a chuckle on a dull January day :-)

video

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21 January 2012

Getting out of a lunch rut with DIY veg pots!

Sorry that it's a bit late, but Happy New Year everyone! We moved into our first house just before Christmas, to say that it's all consuming is a bit of an understatement. I haven't had much time to cook properly & as for baking, well lets just say that me & my new oven are still getting to know one another! It's quite scary that you only view a house a couple of times then put in an offer to spend the most amount of money you're ever likely to spend. Once you get in you realise that maybe you were originally looking through slightly rose tinted glasses. Don't get me wrong I love our new house, but once it's stripped of all contents only then do you see it warts & all. It's these unexpected (slightly costly!) warts that have led me to the creation for this weeks post.

I find winter lunches a bit of a nightmare, salads just don't cut it in the cold, sandwiches are ok but not everyday & since Christmas I think I've eaten enough soup to fill a paddling pool! I really like the look of all the new types of veg & stew pots available in the supermarket, but at £3-£4 a pop they hardly make for a frugal lunch?

So with a mountain of tuperware at my disposal I thought I'd create my own 'Hodge Pots'! I made 2 different types, but the great thing is they both start with pretty much the same base ingredients. We have...

Rich Ratatouille with Cous Cous

Chilli Bean & Quorn Sausage Stew with Rice. I'm not a veggie, but I like these quorn sausages as they're low in fat, high in protein & not as rich as meaty ones.


For the ratatouille you need:

1 onion
1 pepper
1 aubergine
1 courgette
Handful of chopped mushrooms
Squeeze of garlic puree
Can of chopped tomatoes
Veggie stock cube & a dash of water
Squeeze of tomato puree
Handful of chopped basil
Plain cous cous made up with veggie stock

Roughly chop all the veggies & fry with a little olive oil & garlic until soft. Add the tomatoes & puree, stock cube, water & basil. Mix well & allow to simmer for around 30 minutes until the veggies are lovely & soft & the sauce has thickened up. I layered the ratatouille in a pot with the seasoned cous cous.

For the Chilli bean stew you need:

1 onion
1 pepper
1 courgette
Handful of chopped mushrooms
Squeeze of garlic puree
6 quorn sausages, chopped into chunks
Can of mixed beans in mild chilli sauce (I use Sainsbury)
Can of chopped tomatoes
Veggie stock cube
Squeeze of tomato puree
Mild chilli powder to taste

Again, start by roughly chopping all the veggies, then fry with a little olive oil & garlic until soft. Add the tomatoes & puree, stock cube, beans with sauce. Mix well then taste the sauce, I added an extra 2tsps of mild chilli powder to give it a little more kick. Cover & leave to simmer for around 20 minutes. This one I layered in a pot with cooked rice.

Both are delicious, warming & filling for winter days & by my reckoning work out at around £1 per pot - bargain! Let me know if you have a recipe idea for a lunch pot? Till next time, Rebecca x

P.S. As well as a new house, we also have a new addition to the family....completely gratuitous video of our new cat, but I hope it'll raise a chuckle on a dull January day :-)

video

0 comments:

Post a Comment

 

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