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Five quick lunch recipes that prove cooking meals from scratch doesn’t have to be time consuming


LORNA COOPER knows cooking meals from scratch doesn’t have to be time consuming or pricey.

When a back injury forced mum-of-three Lorna to take time off work, she had to slash her food bill from £100 to just £20 a week.

Feed your family for under £20 - and in less than 20 minutes

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Feed your family for under £20 – and in less than 20 minutesCredit: Getty

Lorna, 44, soon realised that by shopping around, diligently checking voucher codes and buying in bulk she was able to reduce her bill with ease.

In her second book, Feed Your Family For £20 In A Hurry, Lorna, from Paisley, Renfrewshire, reveals 100 more tasty recipes that can be prepared reasonably easily — and in less than 20 minutes.

Here she shares five quick lunch recipes. With leftover portions from two of the dinner recipes we revealed on Saturday, that’s your whole week’s midday meals sorted.

This is week one of an eight-week meal plan to feed a family of four.

  • For the remaining seven weeks’ recipes and a full shopping list to help you budget, check out Feed Your Family For £20 A Week In a Hurry by Lorna Cooper (£16.99, Seven Dials, published on April 15).

Lorna’s 7-day lunch menu

TODAY we’re bringing you all the lunch recipes from the first week of Lorna’s meal plan.

Here’s what’s in store:

Sunday
Lorna’s signature bruschetta
Monday
Smoked mackerel spread sandwich
Tuesday
Tomato & pesto palmiers
Wednesday
Curried egg mayo sandwich
Thursday
Mexican red rice leftovers*
Friday
Broccoli cheese soup leftovers*
Saturday
Cheese & onion pasties

  • *Recipes were printed in day one of our special series on Saturday

Lorna’s signature bruschetta

2 mins prep • 10 mins cooking • Serves 6

Lorna’s signature bruschetta is perfect for a light lunch in the sunshine

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Lorna’s signature bruschetta is perfect for a light lunch in the sunshine

YOU NEED:

  • 2 part-baked baguettes
  • 200g cherry tomatoes, chopped and seeds removed
  • ½ red onion, finely diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 5 fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 tbsp oil, plus extra for brushing
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  • 120ml balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • ½ tsp garlic powder

METHOD:

  1. Bake the baguettes and allow to cool. In a large bowl, combine the tomatoes, red onion, garlic, basil, oil, salt and pepper.
  2. Give it all a good mix with your hands.
  3. If you have time, place the bowl in the fridge for one hour to let the flavours come together.
  4. In a small pot, heat the balsamic vinegar over a medium heat.
  5. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and let it simmer for 5 minutes, until the liquid has reduced by half.
  6. Remove from the heat and leave to thicken.
  7. In a small bowl, mix the oil with the garlic powder.
  8. Cut the baguettes into slices just over 1cm in thickness.
  9. Brush both sides of the slices with the oil/garlic mixture and lightly grill them.
  10. Top each slice with some of the tomato mixture, then drizzle the balsamic glaze over them to serve.

Cheese & onion pasties

5 mins prep • 15 mins cooking • Makes 6

These delicious cheese and onion pasties only take five minutes to put together

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These delicious cheese and onion pasties only take five minutes to put together

YOU NEED:

  • 3 potatoes, mashed
  • 150g Cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • ¼ tsp mustard
  • Plain flour, for dusting
  • 500g ready-made puff pastry
  • 1 egg, beaten

METHOD:

  1. Preheat the oven to 220C/Fan 200C/Gas 7. Grease a large baking tray.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the mashed potato, cheese, onion and mustard.
  3. Sprinkle a little flour on the work surface and roll out the pastry to the thickness of a 10-pence coin.
  4. Cut out six circles from the pastry. I used a side plate (15cm diameter), but you can choose your own cutting tool to suit the desired size.
  5. Place the pastry circles on the baking tray.
  6. Put a large spoonful of the mixture onto each circle, just slightly off- centre.
  7. Fold each pastry circle over, sealing tightly around the edges using a fork.
  8. Once you have sealed all of the pasties, brush the tops with the beaten egg.
  9. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes, until golden and crispy.

TIP: For a Cornish pasty, just replace the cheese with cooked beef.

Curried egg mayo sandwiches

5 mins prep • Serves 4

Switch things up and fill your sandwiches with delicious curried egg mayo

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Switch things up and fill your sandwiches with delicious curried egg mayo

YOU NEED:

  1. 4 hard-boiled eggs, cooled, peeled and chopped
  2. 1 tsp curry paste
  3. 1 tbsp mayonnaise
  4. 1 tsp tomato puree
  5. 4 spring onions, diced
  6. 6 slices of cucumber, diced

METHOD:

  1. Mix the ingredients by hand and serve on your favourite bread.

Smoked mackerel spread sandwiches

5 mins prep • Serves 4

Smoked mackerel spread sandwiches is another great sandwich filler

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Smoked mackerel spread sandwiches is another great sandwich filler

YOU NEED:

  • 180g smoked mackerel, flaked
  • 200g soft cheese
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 3 tsp chives
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

METHOD:

  1. Mix the ingredients by hand and serve on your favourite bread.

Tomato & pesto palmiers

5 mins prep • Makes 12

These tomato & pesto palmiers are sure to be a hit with the whole family

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These tomato & pesto palmiers are sure to be a hit with the whole family

YOU NEED:

  • 250g ready-made puff pastry
  • Plain flour, for dusting
  • 100g pesto
  • 100g sun-dried tomatoes, drained and finely chopped

METHOD:

  1. Preheat the oven to 200C/Fan 180C/Gas 6. Line two baking trays with baking paper.
  2. Roll the puff pastry out on a lightly floured surface, into a 25 x 30cm rectangle.
  3. Spread the pesto evenly over the left-hand side of the pastry, then sprinkle the sundried tomatoes over the right-hand side of the pastry.
  4. Roll the left-hand side of the puff pastry so that it meets the centre of the rectangle.
  5. Do the same with the right-hand side so that it meets the rolled left-hand side in the middle.
  6. Cut slices across the rolled pastry, roughly 1cm thick.
  7. Pinch the sides of the pastry slices so that they each form a classic palmier shape.
  8. They should be well spaced out on the baking trays.
  9. Bake in the oven for 12–15 minutes, until golden.
  10. Allow to cool slightly on a wire rack before serving.

GET 50% OFF LORNA’S BOOK

ENJOY Lorna Cooper’s Feed Your Family For £20 A Week – In A Hurry! for half-price at just £8.49.

Mom shares thrifty recipes to cook dinner for five people for just $3 a meal

GOT a story? RING The Sun on 0207 782 4104 or WHATSAPP on 07423720250 or EMAIL exclusive@the-sun.co.uk





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