Category Archives: What’s for Lunch?

Piglet’s Endive Salad

Piglet's Endive Salad

Piglet’s Endive Salad

My daughter introduced me to endive recently, and much to my surprise it was delicious! Plus it has good anti-inflammatory properties.

When I returned to Portugal I was delighted to discover endive was readily available here at affordable prices. This simple salad is now one of my lunchtime favourites.

Lean bacon lardons
Hard boiled eggs
Black pepper

Slice endive, wash and dry. Add to salad bowl. Cut hardboiled eggs into quarters and arrange around the edge of the bowl. Fry lardons until crispy and add to the centre of the salad. Sprinkle black pepper, chopped chives and marjoram and sprinkle over the top of the salad.


Please share your endive recipes in the comments below.


Sweet Potato, Tuna and Leek Patties

I love these patties but I do find the them a little time-consuming to prepare. Sweet potatoes can turn a strange greenish colour when left so I tend to cook them and serve immediately. However, I am going to experiment and see if I can prepare the patties the evening before while cooking dinner. Lunch the following day would then only be a matter of making the ginger sauce and heating them through.

Sweet Potato, Tuna & Leek Patties

Sweet Potato, Tuna & Leek Patties


2lb (900g) sweet potato (pre cooked and mashed)
4tsp sunflower oil
2 leeks (chopped)
1 garlic clove(finely chopped)
7oz (200g) can of sweetcorn (drained)
7oz (200g) can (drained) or fresh tuna (cooked and flaked)
2tbsp Low fat natural yogurt (I used Soya)
60g (2oz) flour (I used rice flour)

Ginger Sauce
2 tbsp white wine vinegar
2 tsp light brown sugar
1 red chilli (de seeded) finely chopped
Fresh root ginger (approx 1 inch finely grated)
4 tbsp vegetable stock
1 tsp cornflour


Peel the sweet potatoes, cut evenly into small pieces and boil in a pan with water until cooked (soft). Drain, mash and leave to cool.

Fry leeks, garlic and ginger for 3 minutes. Add to the mashed potatoes.

Add tuna to the mixture and mash together.

Add pepper and salt to taste

Add Sweetcorn and yogurt to mixture and stir in with a fork.

Form the mixture into eight evenly sized patties and toss in the flour. Leave to stand for 1 hour.

Add 2tsp oil to frying pan heat and then add the patties. Cook for 10 minutes on each side until golden brown. (I use a lid on my pan to keep the heat in)

Place on kitchen paper to remove any excess fat.

Serve patties with ginger sauce and salad. I served with red cabbage and apple. Delicious!

Ginger Sauce

Add vinegar, sugar, chilli, and ginger to pan. Bring to the boil and then simmer for 5 minutes

Mix the vegetable stock and cornflour to a smooth paste and stir into the sauce (add more or less chilli to personal taste). Stir continuously until smooth and sauce has thickened.

Pour sauce over the patties and serve with vegetables or salad.

Potimarron Squash Gratin

Seasonal produce is one of the keys to eating healthily I have discovered, although sometimes it can become boring when preparing the same vegetable in the same way, over and over again.

My Mother in Law is a member of an AMAP in France which is basically a food club where local people get a seasonal fruit or vegetable basket from local producers each week. They don’t get to choose what goes in the basket but one thing that is guaranteed is that everything is organic. She often gives me some of the produce as she runs out of ways to re-invent the wheel and over the last few weeks we’ve been given a gluttony of Potimarron. I:m not quite sure of the name in English, maybe squash or pumpkin? This is what it looks like:

We’ve already eaten it in soup, roasted and as a puree, so faced with yet another one today I decided to experiment a bit and mix up a few recipes I had seen and could vaguely remember but not actuallly find.

Potimarron Gratin


1 Potimarron diced (leave skin on if organic as it adds an extra nutty flavour)
3 cloves of garlic
1 tsp of curry powder
3 tbsp of ground almonds
3 tbsp of ground walnuts (optional)
1 tsp of ground nutmeg
200 ml of soya cream or other vegetable cream (if cooking dairy free
salt and pepper to taste (I used quite a lot of pepper!)

1. Preheat oven to 160 degrees celsius
2. Cut the Potimarron into cubes and leave the skin on if organic (thoroughly wash first mind!)
3. Add the Potimarron to a dish, cover with diced garlic, curry powder and seasoning.
4. Add soya cream (or other cream product) , stir and then sprinkle with the almonds and walnuts.
5. Bake at 160 degrees for approximately 1 hour. I stirred mine from time to time as my over is very strong and not very good at cooking evenly.

Simple Lentil Paté

Lentil Pate with advacado and bean salad

Lentil Pate with avocado and bean salad

Serves 4
1 onion (finely chopped)
1 stick of celery (finely chopped)
3 garlic cloves (finely chopped)
1 tsp garam masala
½ tsp ground coriander
1½ pints (850ml) vegetable stock
6 oz (175gr) red lentils
1 egg (small)
2 tbsp soya or rice milk (I never used this as the mixture seemed to be wet enough)
2 tbsp mango chutney (use another other type of chutney if you prefer)
2 tbsp chopped parsley
1 tbsp walnut oil (vegetable oil if not available)

1. Heat the oil in a large pan and add celery, onion and garlic. Cook for about 3 minutes.
2. Add the garam masala and ground coriander. Cook for a further 30 seconds.
3. Add the stock and lentils. Stir and bring mixture to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 20 minutes until the lentils are soft.
4. Remove pan from heat and drain any excess moisture.
5. Put mixture in a food processor. Add dairy free milk (I never added milk), egg, mango chutney and parsley. If you want to skip using the food processor, just mix well with fork until mixture is smooth.
6. Grease and line the base of a 1 lb/450gr loaf tin. Add mixture and smooth to form an even surface (My loaf tin was too large)

My loaf tin was too large!

My loaf tin was too large!

7. Cover and cook in a preheated oven 400F/200C/Gas mark 6 for 40-45 minutes or until firm to touch.
8. Leave paté in the tin to cool for 20 minutes and then transfer to a refrigerator to cool completely.
9. Turn the paté on to a serving plate

Keen to see the results I completely overlooked step number eight and tried to turn the paté onto the serving dish while it was still hot. Result, it all disintegrated as you can see from the photograph. I optimistically pressed the paté back into shape and hoped for the best.

Lentil Paté

Lentil Paté

While my first attempt would not win an award for appearance it did taste absolutely delicious. I feel the lentil paté makes an excellent starter served with gluten-free bread and mango chutney or even a light lunch served with avocado, bean and tuna salad as pictured above.

My husband certainly gave it the thumbs up so I will definitely be cooking this again. However, next time I will leave in the tin until cold as instructed!

I will also experiment replacing the garam masala with chili powder.

Does anyone have a simple recipe for a gluten-free loaf?