Out in all weathers, working long hours and passionate about what they do, our farmers are the people who make Co-op more than just a supermarket.
We went out to film a chicken and an egg farmer this month and you can see the videos on our YouTube channel. It makes my job so much easier because I know that Co-op meat, fish, fruit and vegetables are going to be of the very best quality. My philosophy with cooking is that it will only taste as good as the food that you cook with. I also like to keep recipes as simple as possible and make sure that they look as good as they taste.
We all love burgers and they are such a quick and easy way to feed a hungry family! Just look at how thick and juicy these are and they only take a few minutes to assemble. These are cooked in the oven, which is easier for young children as they don’t have to faff around frying them. You could also throw in some oven chips to cook at the same time. I thought you might like to show your children this video we made a while ago of Archie and Jude having fun making burgers - you never know it might help you to encourage your children into the kitchen!
Turn the oven on to 200ºC/fan 180ºC/gas 5. Crack the egg into a small bowl and mix with a fork. Put the beef mince into a bowl and add the egg, along with the parsley and mustard and mix it together really well.
Divide the mixture in half and then into quarters and use your hands to shape each piece into a burger shape.
Poke a few cubes of cheese into each burger. Brush the oil over an ovenproof pan, put the burgers into the pan and cook in the oven for about 10 minutes.
Take the pan out of the oven, turn the burgers over and cook for another 5 minutes or until the burgers are golden and cooked all the way through.
Serve the burgers in buns with the salad, tomatoes and relishes.
Muffins are so easy to make, and there are infinite varieties to suit everyone’s taste. We made these with tinned peaches and pecan nuts sprinkled on top. But you could also use tinned pineapple or fresh blueberries. Hazelnuts or almonds are nice on top too and for a real treat you can add milk or white chocolate. Stock up on supplies and enjoy experimenting! And check out our Pancake Day video too.
Preheat the oven to 190ºC/170ºCfan/gas 5. Lightly butter a 12-hole muffin tin. Sieve the flour and baking powder into a large bowl. Add the sugar and mix together.
Measure the milk, yogurt and oil in a jug, add the vanilla and eggs and mix together. Pour this egg mixture straight onto the flour mix.
Add the peaches and nuts, then quickly and gently mix everything together – this should not take long, don’t over mix or your muffins will not be light, the mixture should look lumpy and slightly uneven, this is how it is supposed to look.
Spoon the mixture into the cases. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until risen and golden brown. Leave the muffins to cool slightly, then take the cases out of the tin and leave to cool on a cooling rack.
TIP: always keep some tinned fruits, nuts and chocolate in your store cupboard for making muffins or cookies. Tinned peaches, blackcurrants and pineapple are particularly good, hazelnuts, pecans and almonds have a wonderful flavour and texture; milk and white chocolate are always useful for muffins and cookies.
Ready in 20 minutes and a great way to use up leftovers
If you have any meat left from the Sunday roast, this is a great way to turn it into a second meal with little fuss or cost.
You’re likely to find most of the ingredients in your cupboard or lurking in the fridge. If there are no leftovers, just pop into store on your way home to pick up some prawns or you could also make it with cooked chicken. Throw in some fresh coriander at the end to add a bit of zing.
For perfect rice every time, watch our video.
Put the rice into a pan with 600ml water and bring to the boil, simmer for 15 minutes. Take off the heat, leave to stand for 10 minutes and allow it to cool down.
Finely slice the spring onions and fry with the oil in a large pan or wok. Add the cooled rice and move around the pan to heat through.
Push the rice to one side, add the eggs to the pan and leave to cook for a few minutes, then break up the egg and mix through the rice.
Add the peas and prawns and heat through, scatter coriander over the top, if using. Serve with reduced salt soy sauce on the table, which can be added to taste.
TIP: Only use cold rice - if you add hot or warm rice to the pan it is likely to go stodgy as you fry it.
We love bread and butter pudding as a dessert, which got us thinking – what if you made a savoury version? So we spent a happy day in the kitchen experimenting and came up with this take on one of our favourite puds. Packed with tomatoes, spinach, bacon and cheese, it is super-nutritious and delicious. Serve with some salad and an avocado and you’ve got a sure-fire winner on your hands.
You can make it really hearty meal by serving it with some warming soup such as sweetcorn chowder. Watch our video to find out how easy it is to make.
Preheat the oven to 190ºC/fan 170ºC/gas 5. Put the milk and garlic into a small pan and bring to a simmer. Turn off the heat and leave to cool. Take the garlic out of the milk.
Butter a 12-hole muffin tin and the bread, then cut into small pieces and divide between the holes.
Divide the tomatoes, bacon and spinach between the holes in the tin – ensuring the ingredients are mixed among the pieces of bread.
Beat the eggs and cooled milk together in a jug. Add the chopped herbs and mustard and season with freshly ground black pepper.
Pour the infused milk over the bread and leave for 15 minutes. Sprinkle over the grated cheese and bake for 20-25 minutes until they have puffed up and are golden brown.