Princes hamper

If you think producing a quick delicious fish dish is difficult Princes are out to prove you wrong and to do so they sent me a hamper of their products and asked me to get cooking with them, so I did.

There was the time my sister in law popped over with my niece and nephew and I prepared baguettes with a tuna mayo filling that everyone was happy with plus it took minutes to get ready. I particularly like this idea as I always have a can of tuna or two kicking around in the cupboard and I always have some mayo in the fridge because I am addicted to the stuff.

On this occasion, to keep the kids happy I kept them plain but if you do like to liven up a baguette then this recipe fave of mine is good

Mari’s tuna baguette

 
Makes 2
1 tin of tuna – in brine is better as less oily
1 tbsp mayonnaise light
2 anchovies chopped finely
1/2 tsp capers
1/4 cucumber diced
black pepper
1 small baguette

Drain the tuna and place in a bowl, add the mayonnaise and all the other ingredients, mix well together.

We tried quite a few different things in the hamper and one of our favourites were the tins of mackerel, there is a delicious Moroccan spice one that is simply perfect to eat on crusty bread like the tomato mackerel fillets shown below

Princes mackerel fillets

 

I had a go at various pasta dishes here is a very delicious and simple recipe to try out.

Tuna, courgette and asparagus pasta

Ingredients

1 x 160 can Princes Tuna chunks – hold back 2 tbsp olive oil
175g pasta – short pasta works better
1 clove garlic chopped finely
85g asparagus hard stalk removed and then cut in half
1 small courgette sliced diagonally
2 tbsp creme fraiche
2 tbsp chopped parsley and basil
25g parmesan
  1. Cook the pasta in boiling salted water, drain and set aside. Adding a drop of olive oil to the water whilst cooking will prevent it sticking together once drained.
  2. Boil the asparagus and courgettes for 3 – 4 minutes, drain and set aside
  3. Heat the olive oil saved from the tuna tin in a large pan, add the garlic and cook gently for 1 minute. Add the asparagus and courgette and cooked pasta and toss gently.
  4. Add the creme friache to the pasta, and stir through the chopped herbs.
  5. Stir through the chunks of tuna, add black pepper and serve
  6. Sprinkle parmesan cheese on top

We also made a Tuna in tomato sauce variation which can be seen in the pictures below. The girls loved it. Plus a salmon and vegetable pasta. For plenty more ideas on how to use the Princes products visit their recipe page

Fish are a lean, healthy source of protein. The oily kinds such as salmon, tuna, sardines, contain omega-3 fats which are especially good for healthy hearts and brains.

Princes food

Disclosure: I was sent a hamper of Princes products for the purpose of this post.

 

Crispy seed topped fish pie recipe

There’s something about a classic fish pie recipe that appeals to the cosy loving part of me and it’s one of the first recipes I learnt when stepping out into the Big Wide World. Over the years I have altered it and chopped and changed some ingredients but the most recent version I topped with seeds and we were all really pleased with the results.

The seeds add texture and flavour to the topping not to mention important nutrients.

This fish pie follows the classical basic recipe but then I added a few ingredients to make it even more special and I’d love to know your thoughts, here’s what the mixture looks like prior to adding the mash

fish pie filling

 

Fish pie recipe with a crispy seed topping

Ingredients

Filling
1 kg fish ( cod, smoked haddock)
250g prawns
1 onion
100g french beans chopped into bite size pieces
500g baby spinach

White sauce
25g butter
25g flour
500 ml milk
1 heaped tsp English mustard
Mash topping
1 kg potatoes
25g butter
drop of milk or cream

Topping
50g breadcrumbs
50 g mixed seeds (sunflower, pumpkin, pine nuts etc)

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 200 C.
  2. Peel and cut the potatoes into small pieces and put on to boil until soft. Drain add the butter and drop of milk and mash. Put to one side
  3. Cut the mixed fish into bite size chunks and add to the casserole
  4. Finely chop the onion and sautè until soft and golden, add to the casserole
  5. Add the prawns, chopped French beans and baby spinach to the casserole, mix well.
  6. Make the microwave white pouring sauce
  7. Place butter in a large jug in the microwave and melt on high for 30 – 40 seconds Stir in the flour to make a roux. add the milk gradually stirring continuously until well combined. Cook on high for 2 mins. Stir and cook on high for 3 minutes. Continue stirring and cooking 1 minute at a time, sauce should coat the back of a spoon but watch out it doesn’t boil over!
  8. Add the mustard to the sauce and pour over the fish mix in the casserole ensuring it’s well mixed in.
  9. Spread the mash evenly over the top of the fish. Add a pattern with a spoon of fork.
  10. Sprinkle over the breadcrumbs and the seeds and place in the oven at 200C for 30 – 40 minutes

Notes

Frozen peas can be added to the fish mixture.
Cheese can be added to the mash topping.
Can be made in advance and kept in the fridge before cooking.
Can be frozen.

See also Fish Pie with a pesto crispy topping

Fusilli with smoked trout

Trout is very good for you, it is low in saturated fats but high in essential proteins and omega-3 fatty acids, it’s also high in vitamin D – aka the sunshine vitamin – which so many of us are deficient in.

 

British Trout is very easy to cook with and it’s economical too – plus all the healthy bits mentioned above. All this together makes it ideal for a family meal. So British Trout sent me all the ingredients to try their recipe for Fusilli with Smoked Trout. 

If you’d like to introduce some fish to your weekly menu take a look a the British Trout recipe page here where you’ll find loads of delicious ideas to inspire you. In the meantime –

Fusilli with smoked trout

Ingredients for 4 – 6

2 carrots cut into matchsticks
1 leek cut into matchsticks’2 celery sticks cut into matchsticks
150ml vegetable stock
225g smoked trout fillets skinned and cut into strips
200g cream cheese
150ml white wine or fish stock
15ml Chopped fresh dill or fennel
225g fusilli or other dried pasta
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Fresh dill sprigs to garnish

Method

  1. Put the carrot, leek and celery matchsticks into a pan and add the stock. Bring to the boil and cook quickly for 4 -5 minutes until most of the stock has evaporated. Remove from the heat and add the smoked trout.
  2. Put the cream cheese and wine or fish stock into a pan over a medium heat and whisk until smooth, add the dill or fennel and slat and pepper.
  3. Cook the fusilli in boiling salted water, when the pasta is tender or al dente drain it thoroughly and return to the pan.
  4. Add the sauce and toss lightly, transfer to a serving bowl. top with the cooked vegetables and trout.
  5. Serve immediately, garnished with sprigs of dill.

fusilli with smoked trout

 

Verdict: 10/10

A delicious pasta dish that is easy to prepare and the children loved it too. My only thoughts on this one is the faffing around with matchsticks which is time consuming and if you’re not precise with a knife your matchsticks may look like boulders as mine do! I think chopping into a small dice would work too – an extra time saver.

 

fusilli with prawns salmon and peas

If you are a fan of pasta alla carbonara and you like fish then chances are you’ll be tempted to make this quick, pasta with prawns recipe which is perfect for all the family and economical too.

By choosing the basic range of prawns, which are the tiny ones – perfect for sandwiches, tarts and pasta, and selecting the salmon trimmings this economical pasta with prawns recipe is on the plate in 15 minutes and is high in omega 3 too.

Did you know that the properties of fish are renowned for concentration? In Italy when it is exam time the mammas serve up lots and lots of fish to their children under stress.

Whilst the pasta is boiling you simply beat the eggs, cream and cheese together, you pop the frozen peas into the boiling water that’s cooking the pasta for the last few minutes and throw the prawns salmon and basil leaves on at the end, it really is a no fuss delicious meal.

A meal that is perfect for those evenings or lunches when you’re hungry and you want your meal now but don’t have any energy to cook up something elaborate. That’s enough chat here’s the recipe

Fusilli with prawns salmon and peas
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
A very economical and delicious way of serving fish to youngsters, any pasta shape can be used.
Author:
Recipe type: Easy
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 400g fusilli for 4 adults (100 g for adult portion, 50 g for small child)
  • 2 large eggs - yolks only
  • 75ml cream
  • ½ lemon juice only
  • 25g Parmesan cheese
  • black pepper
  • 300g frozen peas
  • 150g prawns
  • 150 g salmon trimmings chopped into small pieces
  • a few fresh basil leaves
  • more Parmesan to serve and black pepper too
Instructions
  1. Put on a pan of boiling salted water for the pasta.
  2. Beat the egg yolks, cream, lemon juice, cheese and black pepper together in a bowl
  3. Cook the fusilli and when two minutes from being ready add the frozen peas to the water, bring back to the boil and drain after a couple of minutes when the pasta is soft but firm and the peas are cooked.
  4. Return to the pan, add the prawns, salmon and basil leaves and toss through evenly add the yolk mixture and stir thoroughly, the heat of the pasta will be enough to cook the sauce.
  5. Serve in bowls with freshly grated Parmesan and black pepper.
 

seafood risotto

I love seafood and when on my recent Morrisons shopping trip to discover their I’m cheaper bargains I found a tray of Seafood that looked so inviting and cheap! I snapped it up for the £2.00 with the thought of the delicious risotto it would make.

seafood selection Morrisons

As mentioned before, making a risotto is a labour of love as you stand over it stirring and pouring in ladle by ladle of stock waiting for the rice to absorb it before adding more

UNLESS

you are the lucky owner of a Sage Multi cooker then life is a lot easier, as all that is required is sautèing off the initial onion, veg and rice and adding all the ingredients before switching the machine to the risotto setting.

Hey presto! Risotto cooks itself and Heston Blumenthal says so too if you don’t believe me!

I love my Sage Multi Cooker. I have had it now for a couple of months and it has already done so many different meals for me, it is wonderful to work with and although it may cost more than an off the shelf slow cooker in my opinion it really is worth while as it offers you so much more.

Here are a couple of my risotto recipes to date that are in season now

Asparagus Risotto 

Risotto primavera

I’ll be bringing more risotto ideas your way but in the meantime here’s the recipe for my Seafood risotto.

When you find the Family Meals and Kids Approved labels on the images it means the girls ate it all up.

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