More delicious dishes from The Batch Lady's new cookbook
BATCH of the day! More delicious dishes from The Batch Lady’s new cookbook that can be made in bulk and frozen, to save time, money and stress
PESTO & MOZZARELLA STUFFED CHICKEN
PREP 5 MINS
COOK 30-35 MINS
- 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
- 4tsp pesto
- 1 x 125g ball of mozzarella cheese, cut into 8 slices
- 4 rashers of bacon
- Roast potatoes and green beans or cooked pasta (optional)
Working with 1 chicken breast at a time, use a sharp knife to carefully slice a pocket into the thick end, taking care that your knife does not slice right through and puncture the other side. Repeat with the remaining 3 chicken breasts.
Fill the pocket of each chicken breast with 1tsp pesto and 2 slices of mozzarella, then wrap a rasher of bacon around each of the stuffed chicken breasts.
Freeze now (see right) or preheat the oven to 180°C/fan 160°C/gas 4. Line a baking sheet with kitchen foil.
Lay the stuffed chicken breasts on the foil and cook for 30-35 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through and the filling is oozy and bubbling. Serve with roast potatoes and green beans or cooked pasta, if liked.
These are great to have prepared in the freezer, as you can simply grab as many as you need for an easy midweek dinner.
Cut 4 squares of kitchen foil measuring 30 x 30cm (12 x 12in) and place an uncooked chicken breast in the centre of each. Bring up the edges of the foil and crimp together to seal.
Transfer to a large, labelled freezer bag and freeze flat for up to 3 months.
To cook, defrost the stuffed chicken breasts in the fridge, ideally overnight. Once defrosted, preheat the oven to 180°C/fan 160°C/gas 4 and unwrap the tops of the foil parcels to expose the chicken.
Lay on a baking sheet and cook for 30-35 minutes, until piping hot all the way through.
Olly Smith’s wine pairing: Top pic for chicken
Extra Special Montepulciano 2021 (13.5%) £6, Asda
Extra Special Montepulciano 2021 (13.5%) £6, Asda. Sleek as a tangy black cherry, this silky Italian red is an absolute no-brainer for the price
Sleek as a tangy black cherry, this silky Italian red is an absolute no-brainer for the price. It’s also light enough to suit chicken dishes perfectly.
ARRABIATA PASTA SAUCE
PREP 5 MINS
COOK 20 MINS
- 1tbsp olive or vegetable oil
- 2tsp frozen chopped garlic
- ½tsp dried chilli flakes
- 1 x 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
- 1 x 500g carton of passata
- 120ml (4fl oz) vegetable stock
- 1tsp sugar
- Salt and black pepper
- Cooked spaghetti, to serve
This versatile and economical sauce can also be used to top pizzas or spoon into meatball subs.
Heat the oil in a large pan over a medium heat, add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the chilli flakes, tomatoes, passata, stock, sugar and a generous grinding of salt and black pepper.
Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to a gentle simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes. Stir into cooked spaghetti and serve.
Set the sauce aside to cool to room temperature, then spoon into a large, labelled freezer bag and freeze flat for up to 3 months. If defrosting before cooking, remove the sauce from the freezer the day before you want to serve it and leave to defrost overnight in the fridge.
Heat in a pan over a medium heat until piping hot. Or reheat gently in a pan from frozen, breaking it up with a wooden spoon until melted and piping hot.
Olly Smith’s wine pairing: Terrific with tomato sauce
Chianti Riserva 2019 DOCG (13%) £6.49, Lidl
Chianti Riserva 2019 DOCG (13%) £6.49, Lidl. If you’re going to buy just one wine this week, make it this
If you’re going to buy just one wine this week, make it this. Poised between vibrant fruit and earthy depth, it’s wildly good value for tomato sauces.
SPICED BEEF SKEWERS
PREP 8 MINS
COOK 15-20 MINS
- 500g (1lb 2oz) minced beef (20% fat)
- 1tsp garlic powder
- 1tsp onion powder
- 1tsp paprika
- 1tsp ground cumin
- 1tbsp tomato purée
- ½tsp salt
- ½ a beaten egg
- Black pepper
- Flatbreads, hummus, shredded lettuce, feta and sauce of your choice
With all the recipes here you can multiply the quantities to freeze ahead, saving you more time in the future.
Mix all the ingredients in a bowl. Use your hands to bring everything together. Divide into 8 equal pieces and thread each piece onto a skewer. Use your fingers to squeeze each piece into a sausage shape.
Freeze now or preheat the oven to 200°C/fan 180°C/gas 6. Line a baking sheet with kitchen foil. Lay the kebabs on the sheet.
Bake for 15-20 minutes, until cooked through. Serve with flatbreads, hummus, shredded lettuce, feta and sauce of your choice.
Transfer to a labelled freezer bag and freeze flat for up to 3 months. Cook from frozen: preheat the oven to 180°C/ fan 160°C/gas 4. Line a baking sheet with foil.
Lay the kebabs on the baking sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes, until cooked through. Serve as above.
Olly Smith’s wine pairing: Brilliant with beef
Mimo Moutinho Lisboa Red 2021 (13%) £4.99, Aldi
Mimo Moutinho Lisboa Red 2021 (13%) £4.99, Aldi. This juicy and fruity no-nonsense red is great fun, and easy-drinking with these brilliant beef skewers
This juicy and fruity no-nonsense red is great fun, and easy-drinking with these brilliant beef skewers. It really is a top-value vino.
CHOCCY PEAR BAKE
PREP 10 MINS
COOK 40-45 MINS
- 150g (5½oz) soft butter, plus extra for greasing
- 150g (5½oz) caster sugar
- 3 eggs, beaten
- 140g (5oz) self-raising flour
- 1tsp baking powder
- 1tsp vanilla extract
- 2tbsp cocoa powder
- A splash of milk
- 1 x 400g tin of pears, drained
- Double cream or custard, to serve (optional)
Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan 160°C/gas 4 and grease a medium baking dish with butter.
Tinned fruit is cheap, keeps for ages and is the perfect option to fall back on when your fruit bowl is empty.
Put the butter, caster sugar, eggs, flour, baking powder, vanilla extract, cocoa powder and milk in a mixing bowl and beat with an electric whisk to a smooth batter.
Tip the drained pears into the base of the baking dish in an even layer, then pour the chocolate batter over the top, spreading the surface with a spatula until it is even.
Bake for 40-45 minutes, until the pudding is well risen and an inserted skewer comes out clean. If the pudding needs a little more cooking time, bake for another 5 minutes and check with the skewer again.
Cool and freeze now or spoon the pudding into bowls and serve hot, doused in cream or custard, if liked.
Cool to room temperature. Cover with a lid or wrap the entire dish in a layer of foil followed by a layer of clingfilm.
Label and freeze flat for up to 3 months. When ready to cook, remove from the freezer and defrost in the fridge, ideally overnight.
Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan 160°C/gas 4. Re-wrap the pudding dish loosely in foil and cook for 20 minutes, until piping hot.
Or reheat in the microwave (without foil) for 2-3 minutes.
Olly Smith’s wine pairing: Sweet treat
Coteaux du Layon Domaine des Forges 2020 (12.5%, 50cl) £9.99, Waitrose
Coteaux du Layon Domaine des Forges 2020 (12.5%, 50cl) £9.99, Waitrose. This chenin blanc from France’s Loire region has indulgent, appley sweetness that works beautifully with the pear and chocolate in this recipe
This chenin blanc from France’s Loire region has indulgent, appley sweetness that works beautifully with the pear and chocolate in this recipe. Serve chilled.
- Extracted from The Batch Lady: Cooking On A Budget by Suzanne Mulholland, published by HQ, £22, out now. To order a copy for £19.80 go to mailshop.co. uk/books or call 020 3176 2937. Free UK delivery on orders over £20. Promotional price valid until 18/02/2023. Photography © Haarala Hamilton 2023
Source: Read Full Article