Salmon & spaghetti supper in a parcel
- Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Cook the spaghetti following pack instructions and drain. Cut 4 rectangles of baking parchment off a roll, each twice as long as it is wide. Lay them on a work surface. Toss the spaghetti with the grated courgettes. Divide the spaghetti between the pieces of parchment, then divide the cherry tomatoes between each pile.
- If using salmon, slice lengthways, but keep the fillet together. Place on top of the veg and press sideways so the slices move apart a little. If using chicken, halve each breast through the middle horizontally to give four pieces, then cut each into strips and tip a pile of chicken strips onto each pile of spaghetti.
- Heat the oil and fry the garlic for 1 min, then pour a little garlic oil over each pile. Season with black pepper if your children like it. Bring the two longer sides of parchment up to meet in the middle and fold the ends over and over, working down towards the filling, leaving a little room for the steam to expand the parcel. Flatten the seam down and then fold in each end. Use paper clips to hold the folds, if you like. Lift the parcels onto a baking tray and bake for 10-15 mins. The parcels should puff up as they cook.
- Serve each person a puffed parcel in a shallow bowl and snip it open at the table, staying clear of any steam (and removing any paperclips).
Cooking with kids: Spaghetti & meatballs with hidden veg sauce
For the meatballs
- 300g good quality pork sausage (about 4 large or 8 chipolatas)
- 500g lean beef mince
- 1 small onion, coarsely grated
- 1 carrot, finely grated
- 1 tbsp dried oregano
- 50g parmesan, finely grated, plus extra to serve
- 1 medium egg
- 1 tbsp olive oil
For the tomato sauce
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 courgette, , coarsely grated
- 3 garlic cloves, finely grated
- 1 tbsp tomato purée
- pinch caster sugar
- splash red wine vinegar
- 2x 400g tins chopped tomato
- cooked spaghetti
- Children: Squeeze all the sausage meat out of the sausage skins into a large bowl and add the mince. Tip all the rest of the meatball ingredients, except the olive oil, into the bowl and season with black pepper then squish everything together through your hands until completely mixed. Keep an eye on younger children to make sure they don’t taste any of the raw mix.
- Children: Roll the meatball mix into walnut-sized balls and place them on a plate – this is a job children as young as 2 can help with and a great job to help teach older children basic division.
- Grown ups: While the children are rolling the meatballs make the sauce. Heat the oil in a large saucepan. Add the courgette and garlic and cook for 5 mins until soft and mushy. Stir in the tomato puree, sugar and vinegar leave for 1 min then tip in the tomatoes and simmer for 5 mins. If your children like courgettes then you can leave the sauce chunky. But if, like mine, they hate courgettes then blitz the sauce with a hand blender – either way continue to simmer sauce gently while you cook the meatballs. If your child is confident with heat, from 7+ they can cook the sauce with supervision.
- Grown ups: Heat the oil in a large frying pan and, working in batches, brown the meatballs on all sides then pop them into the sauce – continue to simmer the sauce for 15 mins, stirring very gently until the meatballs are cooked through. Serve with cooked spaghetti, extra grated Parmesan and a few torn basil leaves your child has picked and torn.
Broccoli pasta shells
- Heat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Toss the broccoli and garlic in 1 tbsp of the olive oil on a roasting tray and roast in the oven for 10-12 mins, until softened.
- Tip the pasta shells into a pan of boiling, salted water. Cook according to packet instructions and drain. Tip the parsley, basil, pine nuts, lemon juice and parmesan into a blender. Once the broccoli is done, set aside a few of the smaller pieces. Squeeze the garlic from its skin, add to the blender along with the rest of the broccoli, pulse to a pesto and season well.
- Toss the pasta with the pesto. Add the reserved broccoli florets, split between two bowls and top with a little extra parmesan, the lemon zest and a good grinding of black pepper, if you like.
Recipes taken from https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/collection/kids-cooking