20 best easy autumn recipes: part 3 (2024)

Jeremy Lee’s chicken pie

There is a great joy to be had from the mere mention of a chicken pie. A soft, yielding, delicious, not too onerous recipe that soothes and comforts always. It is always quite amusing whenever another filling is suggested, that everyone’s eyes turn down and they murmur: “But can’t it be chicken?” Invariably, it is chicken.

Serves 6-8
unsalted butter 125g
celery 1 head, finely chopped
carrots 3, finely chopped
leeks 2, finely chopped
onions 3 small, finely chopped
garlic 2 cloves, finely chopped
streaky bacon 3 rashers, thinly sliced
olive oil 6-8 tbsp
chicken legs 6
white wine 1 bottle
chicken stock 500ml
thyme, marjoram and summer savory (if savory and marjoram prove elusive, simply up the thyme) 3 sprigs of each, tied in a posy with twine or bacon rind
bay leaves 5
sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
flat-leaf parsley 2 tbsp, chopped
lemon finely grated zest of ½
rough or puff pastry 500g
egg 1
milk a spoonful

Heat a wide, heavy bottomed pot, add in the butter and melt. Add in the chopped vegetables and bacon. Stir this well and place a lid on top, lifting to stir from time to time, and let the vegetables cook, steaming until soft and bright.

Meanwhile, heat a wide frying pan, add 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil and fry the chicken legs until gently golden, then add them to the vegetables.

Pour in the wine and stock, add the herb posy and bay leaves, season with salt and pepper, and place the lid atop and let cook for 45 minutes over the gentlest heat. When the meat is just cooked, turn off the heat and leave to cool, then lift the chicken out and carefully pick the meat from the bones and add back into the pot.

Stir the pot of vegetables and chicken and taste for seasoning. Remove the bundle of herbs and the bay leaves. Add the chopped parsley and the finely grated zest of lemon. Mix all this together very well but not so much as to break the meat into smaller pieces.

Heat the oven to 180C/gas mark 4 and fill a handsome pie dish with the chicken and vegetables. Roll out the pastry to cover the dish, about 3-5mm thick. Top the dish with the pastry sheet. Crack the egg into a cup and beat with a fork and then add the milk, then brush liberally over the pastry. Use any offcuts to make a decoration, if you’re feeling creative.

Bake the pie for 45 minutes until the top is golden brown and piping hot. A mighty bowl of parsley and mustard mash alongside, and a bowl of peas, are a fine accompaniment.
Jeremy Lee is the chef-proprietor of Quo Vadis, London W1

Rory O’Connell’s casserole-roast pheasant with red wine and bacon

20 best easy autumn recipes: part 3 (1)

Pheasant is generally speaking, excellent value for money. The lean birds can be a little dry so I like to casserole-roast them, finding the result juicier, and with the addition of a few robust flavours, the bird is almost self-saucing.

When buying a pheasant, choose the plumpest-looking bird. The addition of cinnamon may seem a little odd, but it adds a delicious scent to the cooking juices. The savoy cabbage puree can be made ahead of time and gently reheated later.

Serves 2; savoy cabbage puree serves 4-6
rind-less fat streaky bacon 100g
olive oil 1 tbsp
plump pheasant 1
red wine 150ml, eg cabernet sauvignon
tinned or bottled tomatoes 100g, finely chopped
cinnamon stick ½
rosemary 1 sprig, about 6cm long
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
butter 25g (optional)

For the savoy cabbage puree
savoy cabbage 1 head
water 1.75 litres
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
regular or double cream 25-40ml
salted butter 25-40g

Preheat the oven at 180C/gas mark 4. Cut the bacon into fine lardons, about 3cm long and 5mm thick. Heat a heavy casserole on a gentle heat until quite hot. Add the olive oil and then the bacon, stirring it regularly with a wooden spoon and allowing it to become slightly crisp and golden. Remove from the casserole and leave to drain on kitchen paper.

Dry the breast of the pheasant and place it, breast side down, in the fat remaining in the casserole. Cook gently until the breast is golden. Do not try to rush this stage of the recipe, otherwise you may burn the casserole, in which case the flavour of the sauce at the end will be spoiled. Remove the pheasant from the pan and pour off the excess fat. Replace the casserole on a low heat and add the wine, tomatoes, cinnamon, rosemary and bacon. Place the pheasant on top and season with salt and pepper. Place a piece of greaseproof paper and a tight-fitting lid on the casserole and cook in the oven for 1 hour.

For the savoy cabbage puree, remove any damaged outside leaves from the cabbage. However, don’t remove any more of those nice green outside leaves than is necessary, as they are full of flavour and will give lovely bright green flecks to the finished puree. Place the cabbage on a chopping board and cut directly down through the middle of the head, then quarter and remove the hard core. Slice the cabbage against the grain, nice and thinly.

Bring the water to the boil and salt well. Add the cabbage and cook uncovered at a simmer until it is just tender. Strain the cabbage well, reserving 100ml of the cooking water. In a blender or using a handheld blender, blend to a coarse puree, adding cream and butter as you see fit. The consistency should be like that of a soft mashed potato. If the puree is a bit firm, add a little of the reserved cooking water to soften it and blend briefly again. Taste and correct the seasoning and serve in a hot dish. A non-stick pan is perfect for reheating it, and a little of the reserved cooking water can be used if the puree has thickened in the meantime.

When the bird is cooked, remove the casserole from the oven and reduce the temperature to 100C/gas mark ¼. Put the pheasant on a dish, cover it with greaseproof paper, and put it back into the oven to keep warm. Place the casserole on a gentle heat and bring the juices to a simmer. Taste and decide if the liquid needs to reduce a little to concentrate the flavour. If it already tastes delicious, you are ready to go. I sometimes swirl a little butter into the juices at this stage, just to give the sauce a little more body – however, the sauce should not become too thick and strong.

Carve the pheasant neatly and serve with the bubbling sauce and the savoy cabbage puree.
From Master It: How to Cook Today by Rory O’Connell (Fourth Estate, £16.99)

Dan Lepard’s cinnamon cake with blackberries

20 best easy autumn recipes: part 3 (2)

This is one of the lightest cakes you’ll make with wholemeal flour, but it depends on both beating the eggs to a thick froth and adding a little baking powder. The cake freezes well unfilled so you could bake in advance and wait till the berries look just right.

Serves 6-8
eggs 4 medium, at room temperature
caster sugar 200g
golden syrup 50g
wholemeal flour 150g
baking powder ½ teaspoon
ground cinnamon 2 tsp
cold milk 100ml
double cream a small tub
blackberries 1 punnet, or blackberry jam
icing sugar for dusting

Line the base and sides of a deep 20cm round cake tin with non-stick baking paper, and heat the oven to 180C/gas mark 4. Beat the eggs with the sugar and syrup using the whisk attachment on an electric mixer, until pale and thick and the mixture falls like thick ribbons when the beaters are lifted from the bowl. Sift the wholemeal flour, baking powder and cinnamon once, adding back any bran that the sieve collects. Add the milk to the beaten eggs and whisk, then add the flour and whisk once more until just smooth. Pour the mixture into the cake tin and bake in the centre of the oven for 35 minutes, covering the top of the cake with foil for the last 10 minutes if you need to stop it from burning. When a skewer inserted comes out with just a few tiny moist crumbs stuck to it, remove from the oven and leave to cool. Whip the cream lightly, halve the blackberries, then slice the cake into 2 layers and fill with cream and fruit, reassemble the cake and dust lightly with icing sugar or top with extra whipped cream and blackberries.
From Short and Sweet by Dan Lepard (Fourth Estate, £25)

Yotam Ottolenghi’s curried egg and cauliflower salad

20 best easy autumn recipes: part 3 (3)

This is what coronation chicken would taste like if you replaced the chicken with cauliflower and hard-boiled egg. An introduction which possibly makes no sense until you eat it for yourself. If you are missing the chicken side of the equation, then you could do worse than serve this with said bird, roasted on the weekend.

Serves 4-6
cauliflower 1 medium (500g), trimmed and broken into 3-4cm florets; keeping the tender leaves
onion 1 (180g), cut into 1cm thick wedges
olive oil 2 tbsp
mild curry powder 1 tbsp
salt and black pepper
large eggs 9
Greek-style yogurt 100g
mayonnaise 50g
Aleppo chilli flakes 1 tsp (or ½ tsp regular chilli flakes)
cumin seeds 1 tsp, toasted and roughly crushed
lemons 2 – 1 squeezed to get 1 tbsp juice and the second cut into 4-6 wedges, to serve
tarragon 10g, roughly chopped

Turn the oven to its highest setting. Mix the cauliflower florets (with any young leaves attached) in a large bowl with the onion, oil, 2 teaspoons of curry powder, ¾ teaspoon of salt and plenty of pepper. Once combined, spread out on a large parchment-lined baking tray and roast for 15 minutes, until soft and golden-brown but still retaining a bite. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.

Fill a medium pan with plenty of water and bring to the boil on a high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-high, then carefully lower in the eggs and boil gently for 10 minutes, until hard-boiled.

Drain the eggs, then return them to the same pan filled with running cold water to stop them cooking.

Once cool, peel the eggs, place them in a large bowl and break them roughly with the back of a fork to form large chunks.

In a separate small bowl, mix together the yogurt, mayonnaise, the remaining 1 teaspoon of curry powder, half the Aleppo chilli flakes, the cumin, the lemon juice and ¼ teaspoon of salt. Add the sauce to the eggs, along with the cauliflower and onion and the tarragon. Mix together well, spoon the mixture on to a large plate, then sprinkle over the remaining chilli flakes and serve, along with the lemon wedges.
From Ottolenghi Simple by Yotam Ottolenghi (Ebury Press, £25)

Nigel Slater’s baked onions with parmesan and cream

20 best easy autumn recipes: part 3 (4)

I normally eat these deeply savoury baked onions as a side-dish to cold roast beef, and that is probably when they are at their best. But today I have them with a plainly roasted chicken (butter, salt and pepper and a few herbs tucked inside, roasted at 180C/gas mark 4 for 60 minutes till juicy and golden) and it is quite one of the most splendid meals I can remember. Frugal, too, as there is cold chicken left for tomorrow.

Serves 4
onions 4 medium to large ones
whipping or double cream 300ml
grated parmesan a good handful

Set the oven at 180C/gas mark 4. Peel the onions and bring them to the boil in a deep pot of water. Leave them at a bright simmer for about 25 minutes, until tender. Lift them out with a draining spoon. Slice the onions in half from root to tip and put them cut-side down in an ovenproof dish. Tip the cream over the onions. Season with salt, pepper and the grated cheese and bake for 25-30 minutes, till golden and bubbling.
From The Kitchen Diaries by Nigel Slater (Fourth Estate, £30)

20 best easy autumn recipes: part 3 (2024)


Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Jamar Nader

Last Updated:

Views: 6174

Rating: 4.4 / 5 (75 voted)

Reviews: 82% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Jamar Nader

Birthday: 1995-02-28

Address: Apt. 536 6162 Reichel Greens, Port Zackaryside, CT 22682-9804

Phone: +9958384818317

Job: IT Representative

Hobby: Scrapbooking, Hiking, Hunting, Kite flying, Blacksmithing, Video gaming, Foraging

Introduction: My name is Jamar Nader, I am a fine, shiny, colorful, bright, nice, perfect, curious person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.