Indulge in Deliciously Ella’s ‘Quick & Easy’ Recipes

No time to spend hours prepping dinner? No problem. These recipes from Deliciously Ella’s new cookbook ‘Quick & Easy’ are full of flavour, unbelievably tasty and oh-so-satisfying. Take it away Ella…

Mushroom & Walnut Ragu

I made this for some girlfriends who have been taste-testing our recipes since day one, and they said it was their favourite dish ever! It’s hearty, warming, really rich and just a dream dinner. The leftovers work brilliantly too; I’ll often make a double portion and have the second serving with jacket potatoes later in the week or take it to work with some quinoa or salad for an on-the-go option.

SERVES 4 (with a little left over)

YOU’LL NEED…

  • 20g dried porcini mushrooms
  • 250ml boiling water
  • 100g walnuts
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely diced
  • 2 celery stalks, finely diced
  • olive oil
  • 400g chestnut or button mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 1 red pepper, deseeded and diced
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1 × 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon tomato purée
  • 2 tablespoons tamari
  • 1–2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 4 portions of pasta (about 80g per person)
  • salt and pepper
  • handful of chopped parsley, to serve

HERE’S HOW…

  1. Start by soaking the dried mushrooms. Put them into a bowl with the boiling water and leave for 20 minutes. Once soaked, drain well (but keep the liquid), then cut the mushrooms into small pieces.
  2. While the mushrooms are soaking, chop the walnuts into tiny pieces – they need to look like large breadcrumbs. Place them in a large, deep frying pan over a medium heat and toast for about 5 minutes, until golden, stirring every now and again. Once toasted, remove from the heat and spoon into a bowl. Place the frying pan back on the heat.
  3. Add the onion, garlic and celery to the frying pan, along with a drizzle of olive oil and a pinch of salt. Cook for 5–10 minutes, until soft.
  4. Add the fresh mushrooms and red pepper, with the thyme, oregano and rosemary, and cook for about 5 minutes, until soft.
  5. Stir in the chopped tomatoes, tomato purée, tamari and dried mushrooms with their water. Leave to simmer for 10–15 minutes – you want the ragu to be thick and have lost the excess liquid. Stir in the walnuts and nutritional yeast and leave them to cook in the sauce for a final 5 minutes.
  6. While the ragu is simmering, cook your pasta in a pan of boiling water, following the instructions on the packet. Drain well then stir into the ragu once both are ready. Serve with a sprinkling of chopped parsley.

Chocolate Banana Muffins

I absolutely love a banana muffin, they’ve been a favourite throughout my life and paired with chunks of melted dark chocolate and roasted walnuts they are just perfect: soft, fluffy, sweet and so easy to make. If you don’t want twelve muffins, just halve the mix and make six, which will see you through a week’s worth of afternoon snacks!

MAKES 12

YOU’LL NEED…

  • 3 large overripe bananas (about 350g, peeled weight)
  • 150ml almond or oat milk
  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • 4 tablespoons cacao powder
  • 200g spelt flour
  • 100g coconut (or brown) sugar
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 80g dark chocolate (we like 70% cocoa solids)
  • about 12 walnuts (or pecans), roughly chopped or broken (if you want to make these nut free leave these out)

HERE’S HOW…

  1. Preheat the oven to fan 180°C fan and line a 12-hole muffin tray with cases.
  2. Chop the dark chocolate into chunks, roughly the size of a chocolate chip.
  3. Mash the bananas in a large bowl using a fork, until smooth and creamy.
  4. Add the almond milk, coconut oil, cacao powder, spelt flour, coconut sugar, bicarbonate of soda, baking powder and salt, then stir until a smooth batter forms.
  5. Stir the dark chocolate into the mixture. I always keep a small handful of it back so that I can put it on top of the muffins, as it makes them look even more chocolatey and delicious.
  6. Spoon 2 tablespoons of mixture into each muffin case, scatter over some walnuts, if using, and add a little piece of chocolate to the top.
  7. Bake for 25 minutes, then leave the muffins to cool for 10–15 minutes before serving.

Now you’ve got the meal sorted, why not pair it with some stylish tableware?

SHOP KITCHEN   »

Recipe taken from Deliciously Ella Quick & Easy 09/07/20 Hardback £25.00 Yellow Kite Books

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