Category Archives: main meals

Slow-cooked lamb and butternut squash curry.

This is our favourite slow-cooked curry. It’s super easy, feeds loads and tastes really good. Ingredients

  • 2 – 2.5 lb diced lamb
  • one to one and a half butternut squash, depending on size, diced.
  • four large onions, chopped
  • 1 large jar of  quality curry paste. I use Pataks paste, we like the madras.
  • A few birds eye chillies, if you like extra spice
  • 4 – 7 teaspoons of brown sugar, to taste
  • two tins of chopped tomatoes
  • two tbsp of oil

Method

  1. Gently fry the onions on the oil until the begin to go translucent.
  2. Meanwhile, add the butternut squash, tomatoes and sugar to a large slow cooker and set to medium heat.
  3. Add the curry paste and fry for a few more mins.
  4. Add the chillies (if required) and the lamb and fry on a high heat for a few minutes to seal the meat.
  5. Add the meat / onion / curry paste mix to slow cooker and mix it up.
  6. Fill the curry paste jar half full with water, replace lid and shake.
  7. Poor the water into the pan and bring to the boil whilst stirring to deglaze the pan.
  8. Empty the water from the pan into the slow cooker and stir.
  9. Cover and cook until the butternut squash and meat falls apart easily when pushed against the side of the pot with a spoon. This will take approximately six hours. Do not open the slow cooker to test until at least five hours has passed as every time you open the slow cooker, you lose heat and it can extend the cooking time significantly.
  10. When cooked turn off slow cooker and allow to rest, preferably for at least an hour.
  11. Serve on basmati rice.

This dish works great with just about any good curry paste, just adjust the ingredients and seasoning to suit. It tastes even better if refrigerated overnight prior to serving. It keeps for ages in the ‘fridge and also freezes well.

Lasagne

This is my recipe for Lasagne.

First, proceed as per my Meat Pasta / Chicken pasta recipe but make the sauce slightly thicker with slightly less vegetables.

Then:

Cheese Sauce

Ingredients

  • 60g butter
  • 60g flour
  • 300g grated Mozarella cheese
  • 1 pint of milk
  • nutmeg
  • salt
  • black pepper

Method

  • Melt the butter in a pan, being careful not to burn
  • add the flour, stiring constankcaltly
  • cook for 30 seconds or so
  • Gradually add the milk, stirring all the time.
  • Continue heating and stiring until the sauce has fully thickened. Be careful of the heat, it can catch on the bottom of the pan and burn easily!
  • Take off the heat
  • Add the Mozzarella and stir in until melted – this produces a thick, rubbery sauce.
  • Stir in nutmeg, salt and pepper to taste

Making the lasagne

Ingredients

  • Pre-prepared meat sauce
  • Pre-prepared cheese sauce
  • 200g grated mozarella cheese
  • nutmeg
  • Lasagne sheets – fresh is best

Method

  • Spread a small amount of the cheese sauce on the bottom of a large oven-proof dish.
  • cover the cheese sauce completely with lasagne sheets.
  • Spread a layer of meat on the lasagne sheets.
  • Repeat at least another two times, finishing with a cheese sauce layer.
  • Put the grated mozarella on top.
  • Lightly sprinkle nutmeg or black pepper over the top.
  • Bake at 190 Deg C for 30 minutes, until the top is slightly browning and bubbling.
  • rest for a few minutes out of the oven.
  • Serve.

Meat Pasta / Chicken Pasta – our take on a Bolgnese-like dish.

This is my recipe for Spaghetti Bolognese.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb or Minced (Ground) Beef or two large chicken breasts, diced.
  • 1000g passata.
  • 2 garlic cloves – finely chopped
  • Approx three or four inch cubed piece of Butternut Squash, grated
  • mushrooms
  • two peppers
  • one courgette
  • basil
  • paprika
  • salt
  • black pepper
  • Worcestershire sauce

Method

  • Brown the mince or diced chicken breast
  • Add the vegetables and garlic and fry for a few minutes.
  • add passata
  • Add basil, salt,  black pepper, paprika and worcestershire sauce, to taste.
  • Simmer until the sauce has reduced to the desired consistency – about 25 – 35 minutes.
  • Serve on pasta of your choice.

This is also the basis for my Lasagne, but it reduce the sauce slightly more and use a bit less vegetables.