Two Ingredient Flat Breads

These two ingredient flat breads are incredibly simple to make. They are so simple that my children get stuck in when making them. The best thing about these flat breads is that they take literally no time to make them and they are really difficult to mess up.

I have been buying Naan breads from the shop for years out of convenience. They are the perfect side for a curry, especially my butter chicken recipe.Although shop bought flatbreads are great, I always love being able to make the things I buy as it gives me a bit more satisfaction and with a bit of experimentation they usually end up being better. I make butter chicken curry once a week with some yoghurt dip and flatbreads. It always goes down well with the family and it’s a pretty cheap dinner.

When you buy flatbreads from the shop you usually only get between 2 to 4 and cost anywhere between two and three pound. When I make these, I make about 8 to 10 flatbreads which means I can save some for the next meal. They keep in the freezer for about a month.

Recipe

300g self raising flour

200ml 0% Greek Yoghurt ( I usually buy a 500ml tub and using some for the flatbreads and the rest for the yoghurt dip)

If you want to add some extra flavour to the mix you can add some herbs or some garlic granules. They are absolutely fine plain.

Method

Put the flour and yoghurt in a bowl and mix until fully combined. Depending on the flour you may need to adjust the amount of yoghurt you need. I tend to ‘eyeball’ it and add a little bit more if the mix is a little dry.

The dough should come together easily by working it together with your hands. Don’t be afraid to get stuck in. My kids love this part.

Once it’s together take it out of the bowl and knead the dough like you would bread on a clean surface for about 5-10 mins. It should have a smooth surface when it’s ready. Then roll it out into a sausage shape and cut it in to 8-10 portions of equal size. Roll these portions into balls and then press down to flatten. Use a rolling pin and roll then out to about 1/2 centimetre thickness.

You can add some oil or a sprinkle of water to the surface of the flatbreads and then cook. I cooked the featured flatbreads on a health grill for about 8 minutes. Flatbreads need a little colour, so if you get some charred bits all the better. To cook in the oven, preheat to 200C and cook for 6-8 mins. I always do test flatbread first as the mix varies dependiing on what flour I have used and how thick and large I have made the flatbreads.

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Our go to curry favourites – Butter chicken, quick flatbreads and yogurt dip

If your interested, see these recipes to make the curry and the dip:

Butter chicken curry

 

Yoghurt dip side for curry

 

 

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Indian Raita Yoghurt Dip

The perfect accompaniment for curry and flatbread, this dip is super simple and delicious. The part is it takes no time at all to get together and you can make it in advance. Just chuck it all in together and mix, then pop it in the fridge until you’re ready to serve.

Prep – 2 mins

Recipe

250ml 0% Greek yoghurt or plain yoghurt

1 tsp mint

Half a cucumber – Grated and squeezed to drain the juice

1tsp Ground cumin

1 tsp Ground or fresh Coriander

1/2 tsp Lemon or lime juice

Check out my other recipes to go with this:

Spice Friendly Lamb Curry

Butter Chicken Curry

Two Ingredient Flatbreads

Butter Chicken Curry

A good curry takes time to make from scratch but you can make some short cuts. My version of a butter chicken recipe has taken quite a few attempts at getting the flavour and texture I want from a curry. It also has to be okay for the kids to eat as well – not too spicy.

I think we are not alone when I say sometimes it is just easier to get your curry from the local Indian takeaway, and we do when we want a sample of a couple of different curries. However, we tend to eat curry at least once a week and it gets expensive if you eat takeaways that often. My wife and have always loved curry! We went on holiday to Goa just so we could have a great excuse to eat curry for breakfast, dinner and lunch. It was amazing! That’s why it is so important that when we do have homemade curry, it must tastes authentic. The trick to this? Make sure you buy a good Garam Masala spice mix. You can make it yourself but buying it is one of those short cuts. Also, don’t use cheap tin tomatoes – just like making Italian pasta sauces, tomatoes are just too important to get wrong.

Serves – 4 to 6

Prep –  10-15 mins

Cooking Time – 35 mins

Recipe

3 large onions

2 tbsp garam masala

1 tsp ginger

1 tbsp of tomato puree

1 tsp powdered garlic or 3 cloves garlic

1 tsp paprika

1 tin of good quality chopped tomatoes or passata

30g butter minimum ( I some times add a bit for for a creamier taste)

salt and pepper

Chilli powder if you like it a bit spicy

150 ml of water

3-4 chicken breasts

Method 

  1. Dice the onions and sautee until transculent in some olive oil. Be sure to salt the onions as it helps draw the moisture out.
  2. Add the garam masala to the pan and cook the spices out on a low heat for a few minutes.
  3. Once the spice has cooked out the onions will take a beautiful dark colour. At this point add the tomato puree and cook out for another two minutes.
  4. Add the rest of the spices and a little splash of water or chicken stock.
  5. Add the chopped tomatoes and the water. Let the pan simmer for about 15 mins until it has reduced by a third.
  6. Use a food blender to blend the sauce until it is smooth
  7. Strain the sauce through a sieve. This will make the sauce really silky and without the lumps. You don’t have to do this but I think it makes the sauce better.
  8. Chop and cook the chicken with some oil. Be sure to season the chicken with salt and pepper. It makes the difference. You can add some extra flavour to the chicken by making the sauce the day before and marinating the chicken over night.  The chicken takes about 8 mins to cook in a saucepan.
  9. Add the sauce to the chicken and bring to a simmer. Add the butter and continuously stir until it dissolves into the curry.
  10. Serve with basmati rice, yoghurt dip or mango chutney and flatbreads.

Check out the recipes for the sides:

Flatbread recipe

Yoghurt dip recipe

Lamb leg steaks with roasted rosemary and thyme crushed baby potatos with a side of quick cook garlic mushrooms

If your fed up of having the same beef steak on a treat night, lamb leg steaks are a great alternative. Not that I get fed up of steak that often – it’s just nice to have a change. There’s not much to this dish buut we love it with a glass of white wine on a friday night. It’s one of my go to meals for a treat. The lamb has bundles of flavour and cooked correctly is absolutely worthy as a replacement for a good beef steak. I used to cook this plain a simple with a bit of veg on the side until I experimented with some fennel seeds and butter to take it to that next level. Crushing and roasting boiled baby potatoes is another way to make some pretty ordinary ingredients a bit more special. The skin goes crispy, adding another texture to the dish. The garlic mushrooms are quick and easy – anyone can make them.

 

Serves: 2  

Cooking Time: 35 mins 

Prep: 5 mins 

Ingredients 

2 Lamb leg steaks

15-20 baby potatoes

6 chestnet mushrooms

Garlic or Garlic Powder

Rosemary

Fennel seeds

Thyme

Salt and Cracked Black pepper

Method 

  1. Clean and chop baby potatoes into halves and boil in salted water for 10 mins. when finished boiling, drain and crush the potatoes with the back of a spoon or the bottom of a pan. Then drizzle over some olive oil and sprinkle rosemary, thyme, salt and pepper on top. Put in a preheated oven at 200C. The skins will go nice and crispy by the time your ready to plate.
  2. Leave lamb steaks out to come to room temperature. Rub salt and cracked black pepper and a pinch of fennel seeds into the meat.
  3. Cut the mushrooms in half and fry on a medium heat in plenty of olive oil and garlic or garlic powder.
  4. Preheat a heavy base saucepan on a high heat like you would a sirloin steak. Cook the leg steaks in a small ammount of oil for about 2-3 mins each side. Do not move the steak around as you want a nice colour on either side. Add a small amount of butter and fennel seeds about 2 mins before finishing cooking.
  5. Take the steaks out to rest whilst you finish the garlic mushrooms by adding a table 50ml of double cream to your mushrooms.
  6. Serve once your lamb has rested for a few minutes.

Seriously Chocolatey Sunday Cake

 

Cake making on a Sunday is one of our favourite things to do. We have our breakfast and then the kids are ready to make the cake for our after dinner treat. I haven’t made a chocolate cake for a while as we have concentrated on making cupcakes over the last few months. The kids love making cupcakes because they are quick and they like to decorate them and eat as they are going. I wanted something a little more naughty this sunday and I had some leftover ingredients perfect for this cake from easter. I had some seriously good dark chcocolate as a gift and it’s always nice to do a dessert with great ingredients.

I have history with chocolate cake…a few years back I made the best chocolate fudge ever! Beginners luck though as I totally winged it. Chucked a bit in there and a little bit more there and hey presto! One. Amazing. Cake. Rookie mistake though as I didn’t write it down and tried to repeat it for my son’s first birthday….needless to say, it was awful the second time. It was dense and eggy – no where near the lusciousness of the first one I had made a week earlier. My friends and family were very kind and gulped nearly all of it down with a smile on their faces. I gaurantee you they didn’t like it. My wife is a very honest, straight talking woman and she had no qualms in telling me how bad it was. It has become one of those ‘remember that cake you made ‘ stories which will haunt me forever. Luckily, I have learnt the errors of my ways and now write down everything I experiment, discard the bad and improve the good. This cake is a top notch recipe that I have been playing with for a while. It’s fudgy, rich and moist – everything you want it a seriously good chocolate cake.

If you’re on a diet you might want to look away. I try not to eat that much chocolate nowadays but I need a good fix to keep the choccie monster at bay. This is a chocolatey, fudgy, and ultimately a gorgeous Sunday cake. I hope you enjoy! It’s an absolute belter of a cake.

Ingredients 

Cake Mix

200g Self raising flour

200g sugar

90ml olive oil

110ml boiling coffee water  ( 3tsp instant coffee)

2 eggs

1 1/4 tsp vanilla extract

60g cocoa powder unsweetened

1 1/4  tsp baking powder

2 tbsp milk

Filling 

250g mascarpone

2 tbs nutella

2 tbsp cocoa powder unsweetened

Topping 

100g dark chocolate – finely chopped or grated

1 tbsp heavy cream or 75ml of double cream if you haven’t got the heavy stuff

 

Method

  1. Whisk the eggs and sugar together until light and fluffy. Preheat the oven to 175 degrees celcius.
  2. Add and mix the flour, cocoa powder and vanilla together.
  3. Add and beat the oil in until smooth and thick.
  4. Make the coffee water. It has to be boiling water and added when just made. Again beat this into the mixture.
  5. Add the milk and beat the mixture until fully incorporated.
  6. Crease a large cake pan. I used a 10 inch cake pan for my cake.
  7. Cook in the oven for 40mins. Check the cake at 30 mins. It should be a fudgey cake so the cocktail stick will be slightly covered but not runny.
  8. Let the cake cool for at least 20 mins before completing the filling and topping of the cake.
  9. For the filling, mix the mascarpone, nutella and cocoa powder together. I then put in to a piping bag and keep in the fridge until I am ready to complete the cake.
  10. For the topping, make a rich chocolate ganache by warming the cream on the hob on a low to medium heat. Do not boil the cream. Add the chopped chocolate to the cream and stir whilst off the heat. It will become a thick ganache and spreadable.

 

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Sicilian Style Cherry Tomato Linguine

I’ve always been pasta mad! In my mind, if you don’t love a bit of pasta there’s something inherently wrong with you, or you’re just not making it right. No offense intended.

Now you can either make your own pasta or you can buy some from your local supermarket. The supermarket stuff can be great to be honest and if your time poor it’s a great way of getting that pasta hit without the hassle of making your own. Although, I would say that with a bit of time management you can whip up some great pasta the day before and from there it only takes 10 mins to make a great spaghetti, tagliatelle or linguine. Either way I am not a snob when it comes to pasta. You choose what you like.

 

The other most important aspect of a great pasta dish is making sure you have a delicious sauce to go with it. There are so many to choose from and sometimes a simple sauce is all that’s needed. From a stay at home dad point of view, the quick sauce is usually the best and least ammount of effort at the end of hard day entertaining the kids. By the time the kids say they are hungry you know it’s too late and within minutes I know I am going to have hangry kids. This meal takes a maximum of 30 mins from start to finish. I am pretty quick at prepping as I have had plenty of practise. If you are better than me and have planned your time more effectively today and have fiven yourself time to get this dinner done, this dinner is low effort and great with a glass wine.

 

Recipe ( Serves 4-6)

One tin of cherry tomatoes (You can use chopped tomatoes here instead )

Half Onion – Diced

Half Aubergine/Egg plant – Sliced and diced in to small cubes

1 carrot – sliced and diced in to cubes

Half Large Courgette – Sliced and diced in to small cubes

1 Red Pepper – Sliced and diced in to small cubes

1 tbsp tomato puree concentrate

Salt and Pepper to taste

150g Bacon lardons (Can leave or replace to go vegetarian)

Mozzarella mini balls/ 1 large Mozzarella cut in to small pieces

150ml water

Pack of linguine or homemade pasta of your choice

 

Herbs & Spices – You can be as simple or elaborate as you want – Here’s what I add

2 tsp smoked paprika

1 tsp onion granules

1 tsp garlic granules (You can use fresh garlic here – 3 to 4 crushed and diced gloves0

1/2 tsp fennel seeds

1 tsp dill

1/2 tsp coriander

1 tsp oregano

1 tsp  chives

1/2 tsp thyme

1/2 tsp rosemary

 

Method

  1. Prep the vegetables and start to boil a saucepan of salted water. Also, preheat a large frying on a high to medium heat with a tablespoon of olive or rapeseed oil.
  2. Fry the bacon lardons until browning and crispy. Remove the lardons, keeping the oil in the pan. This will give the veg some flavour. When I do the vegetarian version, I replace the bacon with some quorn or mince and use some vegetable stock.
  3. Add the cubed and diced vegatables to the pan and turn down the heat to medium. Fry, constantly moving the veg, for about 5 mins until they soften. Add the tomato puree and cook for 2 mins making sure you get a even mix across the vegetables.
  4. the bacon back to the pan, along with with tin of cherry tomatoes. At this point add the linguine to the boiling salted water. These cook for about 9-11 mins if your using the dried, shop bought packs. Fresh pasta takes minutes to cook so adjust the time you put the lingiune on accordingly.
  5. Add the herbs and spices. If you want a more grown up version, or your kids can take a spice of spice, add some flaked chillis to the pan. Add the water and let the sauce simmer for the time the linguine is cooking.
  6. When the linguine is cooked, drain and add a bit of pepper. Put the liguine in the sauce and stir to coat the pasta with the sauce.
  7. Finally, add the mozzarella to the pan of pasta. Stir until the mozzarella is melted and stringy throughout the pasta.

Pasta for me isn’t complete without a bit on salty, tangy cheese on top. I used Parmigiano-Reggiano which has a great flavour to top this dish. This dish serves four hungry people of you can be sensible and serve a few normal size dishes to 6 people.