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Eating healthy is one of the best ways to help your body help you, we’re all about promoting home-cooking in a straight-forward manner to help you get started.

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    Hunters Chicken

    hunters' chicken on a plate with chips and beans

    I batch cook Hunters Chicken and eat it within a month.


    8 skinless chicken breasts
    8 bacon rashers
    250ml BBQ Sauce (I use the Jack Daniels Sauce, but you can use any
    BBQ Sauce)
    150g Cheddar Cheese


    • Preheat the oven to 180C decide on either individual containers or one
    • big dish you can alter the amount of bacon and chicken to suit this. Wrap
    • each chicken breast in a rasher of bacon, and place it in the dish, pour in
    • the BBQ Sauce, cover with grated cheese and season with salt and pepper. Cook for 30-45 mins until cheese is golden and chicken is cooked all
    • the way through and piping hot.

    Tip: You can prepare this dish then freeze it for an easy meal throughout
    the week. (Eat within a month though).

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    Breakfast Pie

    breakfast pie


    500g Puff Pastry
    8 sausages (cooked and chopped in half)
    8 Rashers of bacon (cooked and chopped in half)
    4 eggs (whisked with a little salt and pepper to season)
    1Tomato (Chopped in quarters)
    75g of grated cheese


    • Pre-grease a pie dish or deep glass dish.
    • Split the pastry into two pieces 300g and 200g, roll out the larger piece and
    • line the dish, line with parchment paper and cook at 180-200C for 10-15
    • minutes pastry should be firm but not golden. Add sausages, bacon, tomato
    • onto the cooked pastry add egg mixture and cheese, roll out the remaining
    • pastry and place on top of the mixture, cut off any edges using a dinner knife.
    • Brush the top of the pastry with a little milk, and make a small cross insertion
    • with a sharp knife in the centre of the pastry, return to oven for 30 minutes at
    • 180C
    • Serve while hot.
    • Note 180C is for a fan-assisted oven, 200C for a normal oven.

  • Quick- Fix Tomato Sauce

    quick tomato sauce

    (For pasta/Bolognese or casseroles & stews)


    1 Bottle of passata
    200ml of Mel’s Homemade Vegetable stock
    4 Bay Leaves
    ¼ teaspoon of Oregano
    1 clove of Garlic (finely Chopped/powdered/puree)


    Add all ingredients to a saucepan, bring to the boil, while continuously stirring, reduce heat to simmer for 20 minutes, remove bay leaves, and it’s ready to use.
    Tip for a smoother sauce, blitz in a blender for 30 seconds once cool

    Broth with fresh herbs on a wooden board. Selective focus

    Mel’s Homemade Vegetable Stock


    3 Large Carrots
    1 Turnip
    1 Parsnip
    3 small onions
    4 leeks
    Salt (to flavour)
    Black pepper (to flavour)
    ½ teaspoon of mixed herbs
    2 bay leaves


    I use a 4.5-litre cooking pot, but you basically want your largest pan, roughly chop all the vegetables into the pan (if you plan to eat the veggies, remember to peel them first).

    Add seasonings, and then fill the pan with water (leave at least 2 inches at the top to prevent boiling over)

    Bring the pan to boil over medium-high heat, then reduce heat and simmer for 3 hours. Then allow cooling before straining the liquid with a sieve.

    I divide the liquid into containers of 200ml put aside the amount to be used immediately and freezer the rest.
    You can freeze in an ice cube tray for your own special stock cubes!

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    Zahtar spices

    Mix equal quantities of – sumac, roasted sesame seeds and cumin, use half as much fine sea salt and double up on dried thyme, marjoram, or oregano.
    Some recipes use double or triple amounts of sumac.

    Use as a spice mix, marinade, mix with oil for a dip or top on to flat breads before cooking or mix into yogurt for a sauce or sprinkle on to roasted vegetables or potatoes for an extra zing.

    Recipes by Zena Leech-Calton ©

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    Salted Preserved Lemons

    preserved lemons in a jar

    (1 large jar)


    5-6 juicy Lemons
    3 tablespoons fine Sea salt
    ½ tablespoon whole coriander seeds
    ½ tablespoon whole fennel seeds
    ¼ teaspoon chopped dried chilis (op)
    ½ cinnamon stick
    10 x Peppercorns


    • Cut the lemons in to quarters.
    • Rub 2/3 of the salt into the lemons.
    • Squash down into the jar, along with layers of all the seeds and chili,
    • squashing in the cinnamon stick somewhere. (Pack well, leaving little air.)
    • Sprinkle with the remaining salt over the top
    • Seal the jar with a wax disc and a tight lid.
    • Store for up to 3 months.

    Harissa (Moroccan hot spice blend / paste)


    1 teaspoon caraway
    2 tablespoons cayenne or dried chopped chilis
    1 tablespoon cumin (& coriander as well – optional)
    1 – 2 cloves garlic
    ½ teaspoon salt
    60ml olive oil
    ½ lemon juiced (optional)

    Other optional extras include 1 heaped teaspoon of tomato paste or roasted red pepper paste


    • Blend / whizz / process together

    Recipes by Zena Leech-Calton ©


Hi, I’m Belinda, previously the editor of The Foodie Manual magazine. I am passionate about good home-cooked food. Join me as I continue the mission to share knowledge and recipes around food and the food industry.

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“Do not say a little in many words but a great deal in few.” – Pythagoras