Slow Cooked Red Lentil and Aubergine Curry

While taking the time to make a curry can be very therapeutic, sometimes I would rather be sat down with a glass of wine than stood by the stove! This is when I turn to my trusty slow cooker and make my Slow Cooked Red Lentil and Aubergine Curry – possibly the simplest but most satisfying recipe I know. You can use it as a topping for jacket potatoes, a filling for flatbreads or alongside brown rice or quinoa as a simple week day dish.

If you’re feeling brave, add an extra red chilli.

As a rough guide, this recipe serves 4.

  • 400ml coconut milk
  • 400ml water
  • 200g red lentils
  • 4 curry leaves
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 2 sticks of celery
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 aubergine
  • 1 brown onion
  • 1 red chilli
  • 1 thumb sized piece of ginger
  • 4 tbsp. garam masala
  • 2 tbsp. tumeric
  • Sea salt and black pepper to taste

Drain and rinse the red lentils thoroughly using a colander. Peel and finely chop the garlic, celery, carrots, aubergine, onion, chilli and ginger. Add the prepared vegetables to a slow cooker along with the red lentils, coconut milk, water, curry leaves and ground spices. Stir to combine then cover the slow cooker with a lid.
Cook on a low heat for 6-8 hours, stirring every couple of hours if possible. Remove the curry leaves then season to taste.

Tomato and Avocado Toast

Some dishes are so simple they don’t require a recipe but it seems as though everyone has a different way of preparing avocado on toast. There are lots of variations so I wanted to share my version.

As a rough guide, this recipe serves 2.

  • 4 slices of bread
  • 2 medium avocados
  • 2 vine ripened tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp. fresh or dried dill
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice
  • Sea salt and black pepper to taste

Cut 4 slices of bread then toast them to your liking. This can be done using a toaster or a grill. Set the toasted bread to one side to allow it to cool. While the toasted bread is cooling you can prepare the topping.
Carefully halve the avocadoes and remove the stones. Remove the flesh from the avocadoes and transfer it to a large bowl. Mash the flesh of the avocadoes fully, ensuring there are no lumps. Add the dill and the lemon juice then stir to combine.
Spread the mashed avocado evenly across the toasted bread. Finely slice the tomatoes then place on top of the mashed avocado. Season to taste.

Sweet Potato and Peanut Soup

We all need a recipe we can turn to when we’re feeling under the weather. Inspired by a traditional West African dish called Maafe, my Sweet Potato and Peanut Soup is packed with all the goodness you need when you’re not at your best.

If you’re feeling brave, add an extra red chilli.

As a rough guide, this recipe serves 4.

  • 400ml coconut milk
  • 400ml water
  • 2 sweet potatoes
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 2 sticks of celery
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 brown onion
  • 1 red chilli
  • 1 thumb sized piece of ginger
  • 2 tbsp. smooth peanut butter
  • 2 tbsp. maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tbsp. ground corriander
  • 1 tbsp. smoked paprika
  • 1 tbsp. tumeric
  • 1 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp. vegan bouillon powder
  • Sea salt and black pepper to taste

Peel and roughly chop the sweet potatoes, garlic, celery, carrot, onion, red chilli and ginger. Heat the coconut oil in large saucepan using a medium heat then add the prepared vegetables.
Cook for 5 minutes to allow the vegetables to soften a little then add all of the ground spices and the vegan bouillon powder. Coat the vegetables in the ground spices and the vegan bouillon powder then cook for 5 minutes.
Add the coconut milk, water and maple syrup then stir to combine. Cover the saucepan with a lid then cook for a further 20 minutes, or until the sweet potato is ready.
Transfer all of the soup to a food processor and process until a smooth puree is formed. Add the puree to the saucepan along with the smooth peanut butter. Stir to combine then season to taste.

Creamy Country Vegetable Soup


I recently read an article which said that the average British household wastes ¬£470 worth of food each year. As the environmental crisis worsens, we must find ways to become less wasteful and use all of the food in our fridges. With a little bit of planning, it’s amazing what you can do with a few sorry looking vegetables which are slightly past their best. If you’re looking to use up some leftovers, my Creamy Country Vegetable Soup can be easily adapted.

As a rough guide, this recipe serves 4.

  • 600ml water
  • 200ml soya cream
  • 200g frozen garden peas
  • 50g dairy-free margarine
  • 2 parsnips
  • 2 white potatoes
  • 2 sticks of celery
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 brown onion
  • 1 glove of garlic
  • 1 tbsp. vegan bouillon powder
  • Sea salt and white pepper to taste

Peel and roughly chop the parsnips, white potatoes, carrots, celery, onion and garlic. Melt the dairy-free margarine in a large saucepan using a medium heat then add the prepared vegetables – apart from the frozen peas as these will be stirred through the soup at the end.
Cook for 5 minutes to allow the vegetables to soften a little then add the vegan bouillon powder. Coat the vegetables in the vegan bouillon powder then cook for 5 minutes.
Add the water and the soya cream then stir to combine. Cover the saucepan with a lid then cook for a further 20 minutes, or until the vegetables are ready.
Transfer 4-5 ladles of the soup to a food processor. Process until a smooth puree is formed. Add the puree to the saucepan – this will thicken the soup. Stir to combine then season to taste.
Add the frozen peas and allow them to thaw, this should only
take a couple of minutes.

Smoky Roasted Aubergine

I enjoy preparing lots of tapas style dishes which can be savoured with a glass of wine and some good company. My Smoky Roasted Aubergine is versatile option for entertaining as it can be served alone, as part of a salad or even as a topping for bruschetta. It can also be rolled up, pierced with cocktail stick and served as a canapé.

If you can’t find liquid aminos, you can also use tamari or a vegan worcester sauce.

As a rough guide, this recipe serves 4.

  • 1 aubergine
  • 2 tbsp. liquid aminos
  • 2 tbsp. smoked rapeseed oil
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. ground coriander
  • 1 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. onion powder

Add the liquid aminos, smoked rapeseed oil, garlic powder, onion powder and all of the ground spices to a small dish then stir to combine. Set the mixture to one side then slice the aubergine in to thin discs, around 5mm thick.
Pre-heat the oven to gas mark 7, around 220 degrees. Brush both sides of the sliced aubergine with the mixture then place on baking tray lined with baking paper, spaced evenly apart.
Place the tray in the oven and cook for 10 minutes. Remove the tray from the oven and turn the sliced aubergine over. Return the tray to the oven and cook for a further 10 minutes, or until both sides are soft and golden.

Classic Houmous


I recently read an article which said that Britain has now become the houmous captial of Europe. It seems we can’t get enough of this traditional Middle Eastern dip as we purchase more houmous per year than any other European nation. It’s great with tortilla chips, pitta breads, salads or just a spoon! If you agree but are short on time, my fuss-free Classic Houmous is perfect.

If you like it garlicky, add an extra clove.

As a rough guide, this recipe serves 2.

  • 400g chick peas
  • 100ml water
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 2 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp. smoked rapeseed oil
  • 1 tbsp. dark tahini
  • Salt and white pepper to taste

Drain and rinse the chick peas thoroughly using a colander then add to a food processor along with the garlic. There’s no need to chop the garlic, just peel it.
Process for 30 seconds then add the dark tahini.
Process for 30 seconds whilst pouring in the water, lemon juice and smoked rapeseed oil. Season to taste then process for a further 30 seconds.

Root Vegetable Mash

My Nana used to make the best root vegetable mash. I looked forward to visiting her house for dinner as she would always treat me to a generous serving, topped with sausages and gravy. Although it will never be the same as when my Nana made it for me, my Root Vegetable Mash has that buttery taste and creamy texture I remember so fondly.

As a rough guide, this recipe serves 4.

  • 50ml unsweetened soya milk
  • 50g dairy-free margarine
  • 4 parsnips
  • 4 carrots
  • 1 swede
  • Sea salt and white pepper to taste

Peel and roughly chop the parsnips, carrots and swede. Add the prepared vegetables to a large saucepan filled with water.
Heat the water using a medium heat then cover the saucepan with a lid. Cook for 20-25 minutes, or until the vegetables are ready.
Drain the vegetables using a colander then return them to the saucepan. Mash the vegetables fully, ensuring there are no lumps, then add the soya milk and the dairy-free margarine. Stir to combine then season to taste.