Ripe juicy plums are halved and fried in olive oil until golden, sprinkled with crumbled feta cheese and garnished with maple syrup and fresh mint leaves. Serve as a starter or instead of a cheese course. It takes 4 minutes to make! Peaches or apricots work just as well.

APPETISERS Mushroom Soup

Mushrooms have so much flavour and are such good value – you can make a fine soup for four people from one punnet. Use parsley or basil or even coriander instead of thyme, skip the carrot if you don’t have one (though it adds sweetness) and fry a clove of garlic with or even instead of the onion.

APPETISERS Sweet Potato soup

Usually when we make vegetable soups, we use stock as a base because it adds flavour but with this recipe you can just use water. There is no need to fry the vegetables first so it is the easiest soup to make. It is a rich sunshiny vibrant orange soup and is an ideal soup to make anytime of the year, warming in Winter, cheery in Summer!

APPETISERS Caldo Verde Soup

This potato and kale soup is one of the dishes we associate most with Portugal. Substitute spring greens or any dark variety of cabbage for kale.

APPETISERS Cucumber and Mint Chilled Soup

There is something very posh about cold soups especially if they are made with cucumber – it’s overlooked as a vegetable and because it costs so little it ends up looking a bit tired in salads as if it is not worth doing more with it. This soup is deceptively simple – serve it with a dry chilled white like a Muscadet or with a cold craft lager.


This is a gentle fish soup with light flavours and a delicate texture. Serve it with Irish Soda Bread or our Wholemeal Brown Bread.

BREAKFAST How to cook Halloumi

Halloumi is a cheese which takes on other flavours brilliantly. It can be served at breakfast too, with an egg and a fried tomato.

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