Benefit from the slow-release energy of lentils and wholegrains combined with the rich flavour of smoked tofu, paprika and sweet peppers
- 1-cal oil spray
- 1 large courgette, finely diced
- 100g smoked tofu, finely diced
- ½ tsp smoked paprika
- 1½ tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 250g sachet cooked Puy lentils
- 1 red onion, finely chopped
- 1 medium roasted red pepper from a jar (not in oil), about 85g, sliced
- good handful pea shoots or rocket
MethodCook for a few mins to soften the courgettes. Stir in the balsamic vinegar and allow to sizzle and reduce.
- 200g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
- 200g wholemeal plain flour
- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 20g pack dill, half finely chopped
- 50g unsalted butter, very cold and cut into cubes
- 300ml milk, warmed, plus extra for brushing
- 1 tsp poppy seeds
- 200g pack smoked salmon slices and 300g pack soft cheese, to serve
- 1 tbsp caster sugar
- 100ml rice wine vinegar
- 1 large cucumber, peeled
- half red onion, very thinly sliced
- 1 mild red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped (optional)
- For the scones, heat oven to 230C/210C fan/gas 8 and lightly flour a baking sheet. Mix the flours, bicarb, chopped dill and 1 tsp fine salt in a large bowl, then rub in the butter until it disappears. Tip in the milk and stir briefly to a sticky dough.
- Scrape the dough onto a floured surface, dust the dough and your hands with more flour, then fold the dough over 2-3 times to smooth a little. Pat into a 4cm-deep round. Use a 7cm cutter to stamp out scones (see tip, below). Press trimmings together and repeat. Brush with milk, scatter with poppy seeds, then bake for 15-18 mins or until golden and well risen. Cool on a rack. As with all scones, these are best eaten on the day.
- For the pickle, stir sugar into vinegar until dissolved. Halve and deseed the cucumber, slice thickly, then toss with the vinegar, onion and chilli. Leave for at least 15 mins in the fridge. Can be made up to 24 hrs ahead. When ready to serve, tear remaining dill over the relish. Split scones, spread with soft cheese and top with a ribbon of salmon and a little relish.
- 250g puy lentils
- 2 shallots, finely chopped
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 140g shiitake mushroom, quartered
- 250g pack cherry or plum tomatoes, halved
- 2 tbsp capers, rinsed
- 150ml white wine
- 4 x brill (or any other white fish like cod) fillets, skinned - about 140-175g/5-6oz each
- 1 small lemon, thinly sliced
- 1 small bunch of flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
- 140g baby spinach leaves
- Heat oven to 200C/fan oven 180C/gas mark 6. Tip the lentils into a pan, and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil and cook for 15-20 mins until they are tender. Drain and keep to one side.
- Fry the shallots in half the oil in a shallow roasting tray on top of the hob, until softened. Increase the heat and add the mushrooms. Cook for a couple of minutes, until they are colouring around the edges. Remove the tray from the heat, then stir in the cooked lentils, halved tomatoes, capers and wine.
- Sit the fish on the lentils then top with a couple of slices of lemon and drizzle over the remaining oil. Season everything with flaked sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Roast for 15 mins – until the fish is cooked through and beginning to go golden on top.
- Gently lift fish from the tray. Stir the parsley and spinach into lentils, until the spinach starts to wilt. Spoon onto 4 plates, sit the fish on top and serve.
- 3 medium potatoes, quartered
- 100g flour, plus extra for dusting
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 150g pack full-fat soft cheese
- 200g pack smoked salmon
- half a small red onion, thinly sliced
- 1 tbsp caper, drained
- zest 1 lemon
- Make the potato cakes. Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Tip in the potatoes and cook for 10-15 mins until soft. Drain well, then return to the hot pan for 1-2 mins to allow any excess moisture to evaporate. Pass the potatoes through a ricer or sieve to get a really fine mash.
- Weigh out 250g of the mash and place in a bowl (you shouldn’t have much left over). Tip in the flour, baking powder and 1 tsp salt. Mix together until the mixture forms a soft dough. Shape into a ball, then tip out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll out into a circle about 20cm across and 1cm thick. Cut into 8 triangular wedges and generously dust all over with flour. The potato cakes can be made up to this point 1 day ahead and chilled or frozen for up to 1 month.
- Set a large, non-stick frying pan over a medium heat (no need to add oil). When hot, dry-fry the cakes for about 3-5 mins on each side until golden and cooked through. You may have to do this in batches. Stir a little water into the soft cheese until it is spoonable. Place the potato cakes on plates, top with dollops of soft cheese and a smoked salmon slice, then scatter over the red onion, capers and lemon zest to finish.