Celebrate spring with some bright fresh flavours, have an Easter feast and bake some treats with the kids. There are loads of ideas up on the blog now. Let me point you in the direction of some delicious dishes which will work perfectly this Easter. Liz x
Is there anything more comforting and satisfying than a mashed potato topped pie? This is hearty and healthy family food. Perfect for a cosy evening weekday meal and also special enough, I think, for a Sunday lunch. Colcannon is a great way to get some extra greens in, and it’s crazy delicious! I also cook enough for two and freeze one for a rainy day…no shortage of those here in Ireland am I right?
Here’s the flexible and simple recipe. I hope you enjoy it and it becomes a part of your regular rotation. It’s certainly a winner in my house. Liz x
Ingredients (makes enough for 2 pies which serve 4 hungry people each)
- 2 white onions – diced
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 4 sticks of celery – diced
- 6 carrots – diced
- 6 cloves of garlic – sliced
- 2 tbsp crumbled, dried mushrooms
- 2 mugs of green or brown lentils – rinsed
- 2 stock cubes
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 glass of red/white wine (or a tbsp or two of vinegar)
- 1 tsp each dried thyme, rosemary and sage
- 10 or so floury potatoes
- 6 scallions/spring onions – chopped
- a large bunch of kale or half a spring green cabbage – chopped
- a generous knob of butter/margarine
- a splash of oat milk
- salt and pepper to taste
- seasonal greens to steam and serve on the side
You’ll need two large pots and two baking dishes. Preheat your oven to 200C. Get a large pot of water on to boil.
Peel your potatoes (or don’t if you prefer a rustic mash), chop them into even sized pieces and put them in the large pot of water to boil until soft.
Meanwhile make the lentil filling. Sauté the onion in the oil until starting to soften and turn golden. Then add the celery, carrots and garlic and sauté until fragrant. You can of course switch the base veg for whatever you have eg beetroot, parsnips, swede, mushrooms…
Add the rinsed lentils and the wine/vinegar. Give the pot a quick stir then add 6 mugs of water, crumble in the two stock cubes and the dried mushrooms. Add the dried herbs, bay leaves and some black pepper then simmer, stirring often, until the lentils are cooked and have soaked up most of the water. Add more water if needed, just keep an eye on it.
Put the chopped scallions in a wide bowl and just cover them with oat milk so that they can infuse their flavour through the milk.
Once the potatoes are nearly cooked through, add the kale/cabbage to the pot to quickly steam in the last 3 minutes or so of the cooking time. Then fish them out and put them in the bowl with the oat milk and spring onions.
Drain and mash the potatoes with the butter and plenty of salt and pepper. Taste and adjust the seasoning if needed. Then stir the kale/cabbage, scallions and milk through the mash.
Taste the lentil filling and add more salt/pepper as needed. Them assemble the pies. Make one to eat now and one to cool down and freeze for another day?
Divide the lentil filling between two oven dishes, then divide the mash. Smooth it out and then rough it up a little with a fork so that you get nice crispy bits in the oven.
Put one of the pies in the oven to bake and crisp up. It’s still warm so it should only take 20 minutes or so. If you are cooking one from cold it will take a lot longer. You will need to cook a cold one covered with foil or a baking tray until hot in the middle, then remove the foil/baking tray for the last 15 minutes or so to allow the pie to take on some colour.
Serve with seasonal greens and enjoy!
Butternut squashes are the most common squash that we deliver on repeat at Green Earth Organics and it’s no wonder. Organic vegetables just taste better! If you’ve ever been disappointed by a bland, watery supermarket squash, we urge you to try one of ours. These vibrant veggies are sweet and nutty and their fabulous flavour is more than matched by their incredible nutritional profile. Butternut squash is a great source of fibre, vitamins and minerals including A, B, C, E, calcium, magnesium and zinc.
Here are just 4 ways I cook a butternut squash regularly. Let us know your favourite butternut recipes in the comments or over on our friendly facebook group. We love to see what you’ve been making with our vegetables.
Head to our shop here to sign up for a veg box subscription or order from our wide selection of organic fruit, veg and groceries.
Lentil Pie with Squash Mash
Ingredients (serves 4)
- 1 onion, diced
- 3 cloves of garlic, crushed
- 10 diced mushrooms or two grated carrots or beetroots (use any base veg that is in season or a combination of veg that you like, diced or grated)
- 2 sticks of celery, diced
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 vegetable stock cube or a big pinch of dried, crumbled mushrooms
- 1 mug of green/brown lentils (or two tins of cooked lentils, drained)
- 1 tsp dried/fresh wintery herbs eg thyme/rosemary/sage
- 1/4 to 1/2 a butternut squash (or about 400g if you want to weigh it), peeled
- a similar amount of potato as the squash, around 400g
- salt, pepper and olive oil or butter for the mash – to taste
Sauté the onion, garlic in a little olive oil over a medium-high heat until starting to soften and take on some colour.
Add the diced mushrooms/carrot/beetroot and celery and a big pinch of salt and sauté for a bout 5-10 minutes until they have cooked down a little.
If you are using raw lentils, add them now and the stock cub or dried, crumbled mushrooms and herbs if using. Cover with water and simmer and stir until the lentils are cooked through. Keep tasting and adding more liquid if needed.
If you are using pre-cooked lentils from a tin, add the stock/dried mushrooms/herbs and a mug of water and simmer the vegetables in that for 5 minutes first, then add the drained lentils to the pot and a touch more water if needed to make a nice (not too dry, not too wet) base for your pie.
Taste and adjust the seasoning if needed with salt and pepper. Pour the lentil pie mixture into a baking dish and preheat your oven to 200C.
Meanwhile peel, chop and boil the potato and squash together until soft. Drain and mash with salt, pepper and a little oil or butter. Taste for seasoning.
Top the lentil base with your sunny, butternut mash. Rough it up a little with a fork and drizzle with olive oil.
Bake for 20-30 minutes or until hot, bubbling and crisp and golden on top. Enjoy with seasonal greens.
Butternut Squash Hummus
Ingredients (makes about 600g of hummus)
- 1 tin of chickpeas, drained over a jug to reserve the aquafaba
- 1 heaped tbsp tahini
- 1 clove of garlic, crushed
- 1/4 of a preserved lemon or the juice of 1 lemon
- salt to taste
- 1/4 of a butternut squash (about 400g or so)
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tsp smoked paprika and olive oil to drizzle
Roast the butternut squash with a drizzle of olive oil, a tsp of cumin seeds and a pinch of salt until soft. This could take 20-3- minutes at 200C depending on the exact size of your squash, just keep an eye on it.
Place the drained chickpeas, preserved lemon, crushed garlic, tahini and cooked butternut into a food processor. If you are using lemon juice, start with the juice of half the lemon and see how you go.
Add a splash of aquafaba and a pinch of salt and blend into a smooth paste.
Taste and adjust the seasoning as you like with more lemon, salt, tahini, garlic as you prefer. If you like a lighter, fluffier hummus, add an extra splash of the aquafaba or some cold water and blend again.
Serve drizzled with extra virgin olive oil and a sprinkle of smoked paprika.
Butternut, Beetroot & Tofeta, Lentil Salad
Ingredients (serves 4-6)
- 1/4 of a butternut squash
- 2 beetroots
- 1 red onion
- olive oil, salt and pepper to taste to season the above
- 1 mug of lentils boiled in 2-3 mugs of vegetable stock or water (or 2 drained cans of pre-cooked lentils)
- dressing – 1 crushed clove of garlic, 1 tbsp wholegrain mustard, 1 tsp maple syrup, 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar, 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, pinch of salt
- 3 handfuls of chopped fresh herbs (dill, parsley and mint?)
- 6 tbsp crumbled tofeta cheese
This dish is really special with the addition of my tofeta. You can find the easy recipe illustration in this bog post here or in my book which is available to add to your order here. Otherwise use whichever cheese you prefer or replace the feta with toasted nuts or seeds.
Pre-heat the oven to 200C and find a large baking dish.
Boil green lentils in stock or water until cooked through. Drain off any excess liquid and leave to cool while your prepare the vegetables, herbs and dressing.
Chop the squash, beetroots and red onion into slim wedges, season them with salt, pepper and olive oil, then roast them until they are soft and slightly charred.
Mix up the dressing ingredients and stir it through the cooked lentils.
Chop the fresh herbs then arrange the salad into a large salad bowl or platter.
Put the dressed lentils on the base, spoon over the roasted vegetables, scatter over the fresh herbs and crumble the tortes on top.
Enjoy warm or cold. This keeps well in the fridge for no more than three days. Keep the tofeta seperately and it will last longer.
Butternut & Swede Gratin
Ingredients (serves 4)
- 1/2 a butternut squash
- 1 small swede or half a large one
- 2 crush cloves of garlic
- a small handful of wintery herbs like thyme/rosemary/sage
- salt and pepper
- olive oil
- oat milk
- 4 or 5 handfuls of breadcrumbs (add chopped herbs and nutritional yeast to your breadcrumbs to make them more flavoursome – or replace the bread crumbs with crushed nuts/seeds)
Pre-heat the oven to 200C.
Thinly slice the butternut and swede and mix them together in a large, lidded baking dish with the crushed garlic, a generous drizzle of olive oil and salt and pepper to your taste.
Pour in enough oat milk (or use cream for a richer gratin) to cover about a cm of the base.
Put the lid on the dish and bake until the vegetables are soft all the way through. This should take about 30-40 minutes.
Remove the lid and add a little more oat milk. Scatter over a thin layer of breadcrumbs, drizzle with olive oil and return to the oven for a further 10-15 minutes, lid off, to brown on top.
Serve with seasonal greens or as a side to a roast.