On Sunday morning what could be nicer than sitting around the breakfast table together eating boiled eggs and soldiers. I always wondered why they were called soldiers I guess it’s because they look like soldiers on parade.
To make perfect boiled eggs put the 4 eggs in a medium sized saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil, then simmer them for about 3 minutes for runny eggs. Using a slotted spoon remove and place in eggcups tapping each shell with a teaspoon and remove the tops. Serve straight away.
Meanwhile butter your bread or toast and cut into strips like soldiers just ready to dip.
Boiled egg and soldiers
Carrot and potato soup or
Egg salad sandwiches
Sandwiches and Scones
Queen of puddings
Carrot and potato soup
1 onion, chopped
1 litre vegetable stock
2 carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
2 small potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
1 teaspoon dried mixed herbs
1-2 bay leafs
Pinch of salt and pepper to taste
1/2 red chilli (optional)
Coriander to decorate (optional)
Melt the butter in a large saucepan over low heat. When the butter is melted, add the onion and cook for about 4-5 minutes.
Next add the vegetable stock, carrots, potatoes, chilli, herbs, thyme and bay leafs then season with salt and pepper.
Turn up to medium-high and bring to the boil then reduce again to low and simmer until the potatoes are soft it should take about 30 minutes.
Turn off the soup, take out the bay leaves, then add the milk and with a hand blender puree until smooth.
Garnish each portion with a swirl of double cream and some chilli and coriander if you have any.
250g self raising flour
Pinch of salt
25g caster sugar
80g of sultanas
1 beaten egg, to glaze (alternatively use a little milk)
Heat the oven to 220°C / Gas Mark 7. Lightly grease a baking sheet.
Mix together the flour and salt and rub in the butter.
Stir in the sugar and then the milk to get a soft dough. Then mix in the dried fruit.
Turn on to a floured work surface and knead very lightly.
Pat out to a round 2cm/3/4 inch thick.
Use a 5cm/2in cutter to stamp out rounds and place on a baking sheet.
Lightly knead together the rest of the dough and stamp out more scones to use it all up.
Brush the tops of the scones with the beaten egg then bake for 12-15 minutes until well risen and golden.
Cool on a wire rack and serve with butter and jam.
Nursery Fish pie
200g skinless white fish fillet defrosted
(make sure to leave 4 left for later in the week)
100g Smoked haddock
1 small onion, quartered
2 bay leaves
25g plain flour
Pinch freshly grated nutmeg
600g potato, peeled and cut into even-sized chunks
50g cheddar grated
Firstly poach the fish.
Put the fish in a frying pan and pour over 200ml of the milk. Poke each onion quarter with a clove, then add to the milk, and bay leaves.
Bring the milk just to the boil then reduce to simmer for 8 minutes.
Lift the fish onto a plate then strain the milk through a sieve into a jug.
Flake the fish into bite size pieces a baking dish.
Hard-boil 3 eggs as before for about 6-8 minutes. Then drain and cool in cold running water.
Peel the eggs and slice into quarters then scatter the fish with the peas.
To make the white sauce first melt the butter in a pan, stir in the flour and cook for 1 minute over a low heat.
Take the pan off the heat and pour in a some of the poaching milk stirring until blended.
Keep adding the milk gradually and mixing well until the sauce is smooth. Return to the heat, then bring to the boil for 5 minutes still stirring, until it coats the back of a wooden spoon. If it gets to thick, whisk harder and add a touch more milk.
Take off the heat and season with salt, pepper and nutmeg
Pour over the fish, eggs and peas.
Pre-heat oven to 200C.
Boil the potatoes for 20 minutes then drain and season
Mash with the rest of the butter and milk.
Carefully with a tablespoon place small dollops of the mash round the edges of the dish then start working your way in to the middle covering the fish completely,
Ruff the top with a fork and sprinkle over with cheese,
Bake in the oven for about for 30 minutes until piping hot.
Queen of puddings
Ingredients for the base
600ml/1 pint milk
25g butter, plus extra for greasing the dish
1 lemon zest
3 eggs yokes,
Ingredients for the meringue
3 eggs whites
3 tablespoons of jam
Preheat the oven to 170°C and grease a 1.4 litre shallow ovenproof dish with butter.
Firstly gently warm the milk in a saucepan. Add the butter, lemon zest and the 50g of sugar, stir until dissolved.
Whisk the egg yolks in a bowl and pour the warm milk into the eggs, keep whisking.
Scatter the breadcrumbs in to the base of the dish and pour over the milky custard then leave to stand for about 15-20 minutes to let breadcrumbs absorb all the liquid.
Transfer the dish to a large high sided roasting tin and fill the tin halfway with hot water. Bake the custard mixture in the preheated oven for about 25-30 minutes until it has set slightly. Then remove from the oven and set aside to cool.
After it has cooled spread the raspberry jam over the top then start the meringue topping.
In a clean dry bowl whisk the egg whites using an electric whisk until stiff peaks form. Add the 175g sugar a little at a time while still whisking. Transfer the meringue mixture to a piping bag and cover the top like the photo. Alternatively just dollop spoonfuls until the base in covered.
Set the oven temperature to 150°C and put the pudding to the oven without the waterbath for about 25-30 minutes until the meringue is golden all over.
Serve while still warm, but I found it microwaved well as leftovers too.