please help me xx?

my mum and some of the family are coming round on friday and i need some tips for meals she does not like stir frys but everything else she loves…thankyou for your help xxx


  • The Mad Greek

    Here are some ideas:

    Linguine with Fresh Tomato Sauce
    For tomato sauce:
    2 cups seeded, and coarsely chopped tomato
    1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
    1 cup firmly packed fresh basil leaves, minced
    1 cup firmly packed fresh parsley leaves, minced
    3 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan
    3 garlic cloves, or to taste, minced
    2 teaspoons salt
    1 pound linguine
    Fresh parsley to garnish

    Make tomato sauce:
    In a bowl combine well all the sauce ingredients and let the sauce stand at room temperature, covered, for at least 1 hour.
    In large pot, bring 5 quarts of salted water to a boil. Add linguine and stir to prevent sticking. Return water to boil and cook until pasta is firm but cooked, approximately 7 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Drain pasta well. Serve with tomato sauce, and garnish with fresh parsley.

    Grilled Chicken with Garlic-Herb Dressing and Grilled Lemon

    2 heads garlic, cut in 1/2 horizontally
    Kosher salt
    Freshly ground black pepper
    Extra-virgin olive oil
    2 whole fresh thyme sprigs, plus leaves from 6 sprigs
    2 lemons, juiced, plus 2 lemons, halved
    About 1 bunch flat-leaf parsley, leaves chopped
    1 (4 to 4 1/2-pound) chicken, cut into 10 pieces
    Freshly ground black pepper
    2 heads radicchio, preferably Treviso, cut into quarters
    1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

    Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Cut a piece of aluminium foil about 12 inches long.
    Put the garlic on 1/2 of the foil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, drizzle in some olive oil, and add 2 sprigs of thyme. Fold the foil enclosing the garlic, making a pouch, and add a couple teaspoons of water. Fold the foil over the garlic to enclose and fold in the edges 2 or 3 times to seal. Put the package in the oven and roast for 30 minutes, or longer, until the garlic is soft. Open the package and let the garlic cool a bit, then squeeze out the cloves into a food processor or blender. Add 1/2 cup olive oil, the lemon juice, parsley, and thyme leaves and puree to make a thick vinaigrette.

    Preheat an outdoor gas or charcoal grill to medium heat.

    Rinse the chicken and pat dry with paper towels. Put the pieces in a bowl, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and drizzle with olive oil; toss to coat with the seasonings and then refrigerate while you get everything else together.

    Put the radicchio in another bowl, drizzle with olive oil, balsamic vinegar. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss; set aside.

    When you’re ready to cook, take a few paper towels and fold them several times to make a thick square. Blot a small amount of oil on the paper towel and carefully and quickly wipe the hot grates of the grill to make a nonstick surface.

    Season with salt and pepper and place the radicchio quarters on the preheated grill. Cook the radicchio for about 2 minutes per side until it has a nice char; pull it off the grill, place into a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and set aside to steam and finish cooking.

    Then put the chicken on the grill, skin side down, and grill. Grill the chicken for about 20 minutes, turning once, then baste with about half of the vinaigrette and keep cooking until an instant-read thermometer stuck into the thickest part of the thigh reads 160 degrees F and the chicken is nice and caramelised all over, 15 to 20 more minutes. During the last few minutes, throw the lemon halves on the grill, cut sides down, and cook until just marked and smoky.

    To serve, separate the radicchio into individual leaves in a big bowl. Add the chicken and the rest of the dressing and toss well. Serve with grilled lemon halves, squeeze the lemon over the chicken, and top with reserved dressing.


    Penne with Summer Tomato Sauce with Fresh Mozzarella and Basil

    4 ripe tomatoes, seeded and diced
    4 cloves garlic, finely sliced
    1/2 cup olive oil
    1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
    1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
    1/4 cup basil chiffonade
    1 pound penne, cooked al dente
    1/2 pound fresh mozzarella, cubed

    In a large serving bowl, combine the tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, vinegar, red pepper flakes and basil, season with salt. Add the pasta and mozzarella and stir to combine.

    Grilled Sweet and Hot Sausage with Grilled Onion Marmalade and Red Peppers

    3 red onions, sliced in half
    3 tablespoons olive oil
    Salt and freshly ground pepper
    1 clove garlic, finely chopped
    1 small jalapeno pepper, finely diced
    1 cup red wine vinegar
    1/4 cup creme de cassis
    1/4 cup grenadine
    1/4 cup red wine
    1/4 coarsely chopped parsley
    2 red peppers, grilled, quartered and seeded
    1 pound hot Italian sausage, sliced in half, vertically, then quartered
    1 pound sweet Italian sausage, sliced in half, vertically, then quartered
    4 hoagie rolls

    Preheat grill. Brush the onions with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and season with salt and pepper and grill until lightly brown. Remove from the grill and slice thinly. Heat the remaining olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions, garlic, and jalapeno and cook for 1 minute. Add the vinegar, cassis, grenadine, red wine and reduce until the liquid has almost evaporated. Remove from heat, add the parsley and salt and pepper to taste. Grill sausages. Serve at room temperature. Each sandwich gets sausage, red pepper and marmalade on a hogie.

    can also serve with rice or pasta

    Grilled Shrimp with Oregano and Garlic Chips

    16 large shrimp, shelled, deveined
    1/2 cup olive oil
    3 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
    2 tablespoons fresh oregano
    2 tablespoons fresh flat leaf parsley
    1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
    Salt and freshly cracked pepper
    2 cups canola oil
    6 cloves garlic, finely sliced

    In a medium bowl, combine the shrimp with the olive oil, garlic and oregano, parsley, red pepper flakes, and salt and pepper. Let marinate 1 hour. Place the canola oil in a small saucepan and heat to 350 degrees, add the garlic slices and fry until lightly golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Preheat grill. Remove shrimp from marinade and grill for 2 to 3 minutes on each side until cooked through. Place on a platter and top with garlic chips

    Roasted Fingerling Potatoes with Whole Garlic

    2 pound fingerling potatoes, washed of any dirt
    10 cloves garlic, skin on
    3 tablespoons olive oil
    Leaves from 5 thyme sprigs
    Salt and freshly ground black pepper

    Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
    In a large bowl combine all the ingredients and toss. Transfer to a baking sheet and roast for 15 to 20 minutes or until nice and tender.


    Grilled Chicken Paillard with Lemon and Black Pepper and Arugula-Tomato Salad

    1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
    1 small shallot, chopped
    1/4 cup pure olive oil
    1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground fresh black pepper
    4 boneless, skinless, chicken breasts, pounded thinly
    1/2 pound arugula
    2 ripe beefsteak tomatoes, diced
    1 small red onion, peeled, halved and thinly sliced
    2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
    2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus additional for garnish
    Lemon halves, for garnish

    Whisk together lemon juice, shallot, olive oil and black pepper in a large baking dish. Add the chicken, turn to coat and marinate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
    Preheat grill to high. Remove chicken from marinade, season with salt on both sides and grill for 2 to 3 minutes per side or until golden brown and just cooked through.

    Combine arugula, tomatoes and onions in a large bowl, toss with the vinegar and oil and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Place each paillard on a large plate, drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil and top with some of the arugula-tomato salad. Garnish with lemon halves.


    Pasta Salad with Arugula Pesto, Grilled Chicken Breasts, and Feta

    1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
    Olive oil
    Essence, recipe follows
    1 bunch fresh arugula, tough stems removed, washed and spun dry, plus baby arugula, for garnish
    1/2 cup packed fresh parsley leaves
    1/2 cup lightly toasted walnuts
    2 teaspoons minced garlic
    1/2 cup grated Parmesan
    1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
    1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
    1/4 to 1/2 cup olive oil
    1 pound penne pasta
    1 pint red grape tomatoes, halved
    1 pint yellow grape tomatoes, halved
    1 1/4 cups crumbled feta
    1/2 cup roughly chopped pitted olive-cured olives

    Preheat a grill. Drizzle the chicken with oil and season with salt, pepper, and essence. Place on the grill and cook until cooked through, about 4 minutes on the first side, and 5 minutes on the second side. Remove the chicken from the grill and cut into cubes.
    In a food processor, combine the arugula, parsley, walnuts, garlic, cheese, lemon juice, salt, and pepper, and process on high speed until the greens are finely chopped. With the machine running, add the extra-virgin olive oil and 1/4 cup of the olive oil in a steady stream and process until smooth.


    Grilled Jerk Chicken with Mango Cilantro Salsa

    1 cup vegetable oil
    1 large yellow onion, coarsely chopped
    3 scallions, coarsely chopped
    2 Scotch bonnet pepper, stem and seeds removed
    2 tablespoons fresh ginger, grated
    4 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
    2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh thyme leaves
    1/4 cup red wine vinegar
    1 tablespoon light brown sugar
    1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
    Pinch ground cloves
    1 teaspoon ground allspice
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
    8 chicken thighs, skin on, bone in
    8 drumsticks, skin on

    Mango Cilantro Salsa, recipe follows

    Puree all the ingredients, except the chicken, in a food processor until almost smooth. Pierce the chicken with a fork to make tiny holes. Place the chicken in a large shallow baking dish and rub the marinade into the chicken. Cover and refrigerate for 24 to 48 hours, depending on how intense you want the flavor to be. Preheat grill. Grill chicken on each side for 5 to 6 minutes or until cooked through.

    Mango-Cilantro Relish:
    3 ripe mangoes, peeled and diced
    1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
    2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves
    1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano leaves
    1 tablespoon chopped green onions
    3 tablespoons lime juice
    3 tablespoons fresh orange juice
    1 teaspoon honey
    Salt and freshly ground black pepper
    Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and let sit 30 minutes at room temperature.


    Grilled Antipasto with Gorgonzola Crostini

    2 red bell peppers, grilled, peeled and cut into 1/8
    2 yellow bell peppers, grilled, peeled and cut into 1/8
    1/2 pound asparagus, trimmed and grilled
    2 small eggplants, halved and grilled
    4 plum tomatoes, halved and grilled
    Olive oil
    Balsamic vinegar
    Salt and freshly ground black pepper
    Assorted olives
    8 slices Italian bread, cut into 1/4-inch thick slices
    1/2 pound Gorgonzola, at room temperature

    Place all of the grilled vegetables on a platter and drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Scatter the olives around the platter. Brush the bread with olive oil on both sides and grill for 2 to 3 minutes per side. Remove the bread from the grill and immediately spread with the softened Gorgonzola.

    Grilled Beef Satay

    1 pound beef tenderloin, cut into 2-inch strips
    20 wooden skewers, soaked in water 30 minutes
    1 cup plain yogurt
    1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
    1 teaspoon minced garlic
    1 tablespoon curry powder
    1/2 lemon, juiced
    Vegetable oil, for grilling
    Cilantro leaves, for garnish

    Thread the beef onto the soaked skewers, working the skewers in and out of the meat so that it stays in place while grilling. Combine yogurt, ginger, garlic, curry powder, and lemon juice in a shallow platter and stir to combine. Place the beef skewers into the yogurt marinade and turn them until they are well coated. Cover and let the meat marinate in the refrigerator for up to 2 hours.
    Place a grill pan over medium heat and brush it with oil to prevent the meat from sticking. Grill the satays for 3 to 5 minutes on each side, until nicely seared and cooked through. Serve piled on a large platter garnished with cilantro

    Grilled Asian Beef Kebabs over Rice

    Cooking spray
    2 pounds sirloin steak or beef round, cut into 2-inch cubes
    1 large (or 2 medium) zucchini, cut into 1/2-inch rounds
    Metal or wooden skewers*
    1/4 cup black bean sauce
    1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
    2 teaspoons sesame oil
    1 tablespoon sesame seeds
    1 cup quick-cooking brown rice
    1/2 cup minced red bell pepper
    Salt and ground black pepper
    *Cook’s note: If you are using wooden skewers, soak them in water for 1 hour before using.

    Coat an outdoor grill or stove-top grill pan with cooking spray and preheat to medium-high.
    Skewer steak and zucchini on separate skewers. Set aside. In a small bowl, whisk together black bean sauce, rice wine vinegar, and sesame oil. Brush mixture all over beef and zucchini. Place skewers on hot grill. Grill skewers for 5 minutes, turning once during cooking. Sprinkle sesame seeds all over skewers and grill 2 more minutes, until steak is cooked through and seeds are golden brown.

    Meanwhile, cook rice according to package directions, adding bell pepper at the beginning of cooking time. Season rice, to taste, with salt and black pepper. Serve half of the beef skewers and all of the zucchini skewers over rice. Save remaining beef skewers for another meal.

  • Emma G

    fajitas with potatoes wedges (my favourite, quick and easy)
    chili con carne/ or chili tacos
    spaghetti bolognaise with garlic bread
    lasagna with garlic bread
    seafood pie with new potatoes and veg
    cottage pie with chips and veg
    curry with naan bread and poppadoms
    steak with jacket potato, mushrooms and grilled tomatoes
    sausages, mash, mushrooms and onions with gravy

    lots of possibilities


    Can’t beat a good ol’ spaghetti bolognese with garlic bread.

  • pepzi_bandit

    do a roast, less bother, less washing up

  • Belzebuth

    cyanide on toast…xx

  • Cheryl L

    Here’s a great easy recipe for you:

    Italian Chopped Salad in Shells

    36 appetizers 3¼ hours 3 hours prep

    1 (16 ounce) package jumbo pasta shells
    4 cups chopped romaine lettuce
    1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
    1 cup coarsley chopped cooked chickens
    1 cup coarsley chopped tomatoes
    3/4 cup coarsley chopped cucumbers
    3 ounces italian hard salami, chopped
    1/3 cup roasted garlic vinaigrette dressing

    Cook pasta shells as directed on the package.
    Drain and cool.
    Place remaining ingredients except vinaigrette in a medium bowl.
    Pour vinaigrette over the salad, toss to coat.
    Stuff the shells with the salad.
    Cover and refrigerate 2 hours before serving.

  • Nicola

    Fajita’s a good idea because you can put loads of things out to go in them and then everyone can help themselves to the bits they like and leave the bits they don’t.

    Spag bol is always a safe bet too.

  • Blondie

    A dish I make that’s really good is chicken pasta. You cook the chicken and the pasta noodles (I use bow tie) separately then when both are done put together and add pasta sauce. let it warm then add some mozzarella cheese and stir. Before serving sprinkle some more cheese on top and just let it melt. It’s delicious.

  • izadora9

    Simple steaks on the grill…No steak sauce or BBQ, just simple salt and garlic tastes great. Flank or skirt steak is great meat. Do not cut off all of the fat!
    The fat help keeps steak moist!!!! After you are done grilling the steaks, cut off the fat.

  • sam g


  • The Gorgeous Mrs Sithy

    big lasagne, salad & garlic bread
    curry n rice
    casserole n rice (can be prepared early and shoved in the oven to slow cook)
    sausage, mash, veg & gravy

  • moodyGlen

    how about a good old steak and ale pie. easy enough to make and you just leave it a few hours cooking away, then put in the oven half an hour before you want to eat. use ready made puff pastry for the top and it makes life even easier.
    all you need is
    beef stock
    thyme (fresh preferably)

  • laurabe26

    chicken with roast potatoes & veg?

    Beef casserole?

    Spicy Chicken Pasta?

    Spag Bol?

    Indian or Chinese Takeaway?

  • Monkey Man

    Okay, here’s the secret to my "peppersteak," if she doesn’t like this there’s something wrong with her. First, here’s what to buy:

    1)1 pound of eye of round steak for every two people you are having
    2)1 green pepper and 1 onion for every two people you are serving
    3)1 jar of Heinz Homestyle Beef Gravy per every two people
    4)Garlic powder

    Ok, here’s what to do:

    1)Thinly slice your peppers and onions
    2)Add some canola oil to your pan on medium heat
    3)Add your peppers and onions to the pan and cook until the desired crunchiness is achieved (about 10 minutes usually)
    4)Add garlic powder and black pepper to taste
    5)Slice your steak into thin strips and add to pan
    6)Cook until the steak has reached desired cooking level
    7)Add your gravy and heat 5 minutes on low/warm

    I usually like to serve this with mashed potatos or another starchy comfort food. It’s a can’t miss.

  • rob lou

    Baked Orange/Curry Chicken Breast, with rice and peas and corn

    4 to 6 chicken breast
    orange juice
    curry powder
    butter or margarine

    Get about 4 to 6 chicken breast, rinse them, place them in a baking dish, sprinkle with salt and pepper on both sides, add about 1/2 onion and 3 cloves garlic minced. In 1 cup of orange juice add one teaspoon (or more) Madras Curry Powder and stir, add to baking dish, cover with foil and refrigerate at least 2 hours. Make rice of your choice. Mix sweet green peas and sweet corn together in sauce pan and add salt, pepper, butter and one teaspoon sugar and heat.

    Bake chicken covered at 350 degrees for an hour. Uncover baste and recover and return to oven basting every 15 or 20 mins. during the last 15 or so mins uncover and let the chicken get color. (total bake time should be 1 hour 45 mins to 2 hours). You may need to add water to bake dish if it gets too dry during baking, but it should be ok. Serve chicken breast sliced (if you wish) with peas and corn covering half the rice (this way you need no gravy)……..Good Luck. You can serve a simple salad beforehand. Maybe some dinner rolls with the meal.

  • There are stacks of good recipes on the BBC website

    One of my favourite recipes is tomato + basil roast chicken with pasta or gnocchi, and you can follow this up with a ricotta or normal cheesecake, icecream and fruit salad or other Italian style dessert .

    Chicken Breasts
    Fresh Basil Leaves
    Variety of veg + seasoning – I use mushroom, onion, courgette, pepper, cherry toms, garlic, parsley – not root veg though
    Optional large flat mushrooms – fried in garlic and butter
    Fresh Gnocchi or Pasta
    Olive Oil

    To make the chicken, you get enough breasts for everyone, flatten them out with the meat hammer and place basil leaves on the top (and you can also add a layer of mozzarella or ricotta cheese). Roll this up and fix with a cocktail stick, and place all the breasts in a casserole dish. Finely chop your veg, and add passata (Sainsbury’s do a very nice bail passata) – stick in the over and cook for an hour at around 180.
    Boil fresh pasta or gnocci according to instructions – normally about 3 mins.
    With gnocchi, I find it super tasty after it has been drained to cover with extra virgin olive oile and season with ground black pepper – you could do pasta in the same way – either way everyone normally smothers in the tomato sauce from the chicken. If you find the sauce is a bit thin (shouldn’t be, but sometimes happens depending on passata), you can thicken with parmesan or tomato puree.
    Another way to serve this up is to make large flat garlic, and place rolled up chicken on mushrooms for presentation – remember to take the cocktail sticks out.

    This dish goes really nicely with white wine.

  • •°o.O.$·Hµt¢h¥O.o°•

    what about a easy to make smoked haddock fish pie
    Preparation time less than 30 mins

    Cooking time 30 mins to 1 hour

    4x110g/4oz smoked haddock portions
    125g/4½oz peeled prawns, cooked
    55g/2oz butter
    1 leek, sliced
    30g/1oz flour
    300ml/½ pint milk
    salt and freshly ground black pepper
    3 large potatoes, peeled, par-boiled and sliced

    1. Preheat oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6.
    2. Melt half the butter in a large saucepan and cook the leeks for 2-3 minutes until soft.
    3. Stir in the flour and cook for 1-2 minutes.
    4. Remove from the heat; gradually stir in the milk. Return to the heat and cook stirring until the sauce has thickened. Simmer gently for 5 minutes.
    5. Stir in the prawns and season with salt and pepper.
    6. Place half the sauce in a pie dish; add the fish and spoon over the remaining sauce.
    7. Top with the sliced potatoes and dot with the remaining butter. Season with some more pepper.
    8. Place the dish on a baking sheet and bake for 35-40 minutes until the potatoes are golden.

    and for desert a nice truffle

    Preparation time 1-2 hours

    Cooking time less than 10 mins

    200g/7oz dark chocolate, broken into pieces
    175ml/6fl oz double cream
    5 tbsp brandy, rum or other spirit of your choice (optional)
    cocoa, icing sugar or finely crushed nuts, to finish

    1. Cover a baking tray tightly with two layers of cling film to put the truffles on to set.
    2. Tip the chocolate pieces into a bowl.
    3. Pour the cream into a pan and bring to a rolling boil.
    4. Pour over the chocolate and stir until all the chocolate is melted. If you want to add booze, mix it in at this point.
    5. Allow the mixture to cool at room temperature – this will take about 1½ hours – by which time it should be set.
    6. Using a melon baller or teaspoon, scoop out bite-sized pieces. Dust your hands with icing sugar to stop them sticking and roll the pieces into balls.
    7. Roll in sifted icing sugar, cocoa or crushed nuts and place them on the prepared tray.
    8. Once they are set you can store them in an airtight container in the fridge for about a week.


  • jazzhd

    hey hunni a roast is always good i love a roast, or home made lasagne with garlic bread and chips is another fantastic meal, i am full of good ideas hun so just ask lol xxxxj

  • Irish-chick

    A brilliant site,you can find anything on it! Good luck! =]

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