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MAIL ON SUNDAY COMMENT: Get Britain back to work, Boris – and start with the schools

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mail on sunday comment get britain back to work boris and start with the schools

To our bold and thoughtful Prime Minister, we would like to address this very simple idea. Unless we can revive and restore the economy, our ability to conquer the Covid menace will shrink and fade, and so will our power to fight all other diseases.

And unless we can get schools back and running fully in September, it is going to be very hard indeed to get the economy working properly. It is now August. The end of summer is in sight. There is little time to be lost.

The economy is not some abstract thing. It is not smooth, rich men in sharp suits making killings in the City of London. The economy is the essential framework of all our lives. The economy repairs the roads, fills the shelves of supermarkets, cares for the old, pays for the police, the fire service, the ambulances and, of course, the NHS.

If it falters, all these things falter too. After defending the country against its foreign enemies, and protecting law-abiding citizens against crime, the economy is the biggest single responsibility of government. And ours is not doing very well at all just now.

The Prime Minister Boris Johnson wearing a face mask while working on the train back from North Yorkshire on Thursday

The Prime Minister Boris Johnson wearing a face mask while working on the train back from North Yorkshire on Thursday

The Prime Minister Boris Johnson wearing a face mask while working on the train back from North Yorkshire on Thursday

Without the vast flow of artificial life support from Rishi Sunak, which simply cannot last much longer, much of it would swiftly fold. Small businesses, which employ so many individuals and embody the hopes of so many brave risk-takers, are shrivelling for lack of custom, yet in many cases must still pay business rates and rents. High streets are half-empty as shoppers switch to the ease of the internet.

Public transport, devastated by health fears, is now back in the hands of the state as it could not make ends meet without giant subsidy. Pubs and restaurants, hampered by miserable restrictions imposed on them, battle to win back customers in search of the lost pleasures of an evening out. But when those customers turn up they are met with bureaucracy, unsmiling rules and – in many cases – the dispiriting feeling that they might as well have stayed at home.

The leisure travel industry is visibly crumbling, especially after last week’s sudden reimposition of quarantine on travellers returning from Spain. Who now dares risk his or her savings on a holiday, when the destination may at any time be ruled too dangerous to travel, with barely a whisper of warning?

MPs, Ministers and civil servants may be able to cope with 14 days of enforced idleness at home. They will be paid anyway. But plenty of others whose work cannot be done via a home computer dare not take such a risk.

The indiscriminate reimposition of stern rules on Greater Manchester may look responsible to Ministers, many of whom probably think that ‘The North’ is what they occasionally see on Coronation Street. But residents of these areas are baffled by the rules and the reasoning behind them. Is this sweeping measure really in proportion to the supposed danger, or have the Government’s medical advisers been carried away by the huge power that inexpert politicians have conferred on them?

The response of the people of this country to such strictures has so far been rather moving. Told that they can help to stem a dangerous disease by making profound and enduring sacrifices of personal freedom, millions have laid aside doubts and obeyed the most extraordinary instructions for months on end.

Theatre workers protest outside the National Theatre, against the mass redundancies of low-paid art jobs due to the Coronavirus outbreak, in London, Saturday

Theatre workers protest outside the National Theatre, against the mass redundancies of low-paid art jobs due to the Coronavirus outbreak, in London, Saturday

Theatre workers protest outside the National Theatre, against the mass redundancies of low-paid art jobs due to the Coronavirus outbreak, in London, Saturday

Prime Minister Boris Johnson (R), the Chancellor Rishi Sunak (L), seen here joining Cpl Gemma Connell (C) from the Royal Squadron at RAF Northolt in her 24 hour cycle Challenge to raise money for Great Ormond Street Hospital, London, Britain, 30, July 2020

Prime Minister Boris Johnson (R), the Chancellor Rishi Sunak (L), seen here joining Cpl Gemma Connell (C) from the Royal Squadron at RAF Northolt in her 24 hour cycle Challenge to raise money for Great Ormond Street Hospital, London, Britain, 30, July 2020

Prime Minister Boris Johnson (R), the Chancellor Rishi Sunak (L), seen here joining Cpl Gemma Connell (C) from the Royal Squadron at RAF Northolt in her 24 hour cycle Challenge to raise money for Great Ormond Street Hospital, London, Britain, 30, July 2020

They have been separated from friends and family, prevented from working, deprived of their sources of income, kept away even from weddings, funerals and church services. Their children’s schools have been shut – exposing once again the shaming divide between the quality of private and state provision, a chasm that 50 years of promises and reforms have not been able to narrow.

University educations, for which the young are required to sink themselves in frightening debt, have been blighted – with worrying effects on future careers. Their parents’ daily lives have been more infested with regulations and nosey parkers than at any time since the Second World War. Cinemas and theatres have gone dark. Travel plans have had to be thrown in the bin. Yet they have barely complained. And so the Government and its advisers seem to feel they can keep loading more and more restrictions on them.

This is not just an abuse of generosity. It is not just a mistake, though it is a mistake – because even the patience of the British people is not unlimited. Worse still, it stands in bitter contrast to the way the same Government has behaved towards those increasingly overmighty subjects, the public-sector trade unions. Huge numbers who work with their hands, or who for other reasons can do their jobs only if they are physically present, long ago returned to their daily tasks. Yet Government departments and the public sector as a whole, (apart from the NHS) have hardly begun to get back to work. Even though they are supposedly under the direct control of Her Majesty’s Government, Whitehall offices echo with emptiness.

Secretary of State for Education Gavin Williamson arrives at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, King Charles Street, London on July 21

Secretary of State for Education Gavin Williamson arrives at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, King Charles Street, London on July 21

Secretary of State for Education Gavin Williamson arrives at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, King Charles Street, London on July 21 

And it is still far from clear whether the state schools of England will open properly next month. And if they do not, and if their after-school activities do not resume, legions of parents will simply be unable to return to work properly, and the economy will continue to stutter and stall. It is as simple as that.

Fundamentally, these failures are down to the unwillingness of Ministers to govern properly. Sometimes this means insisting the elected Government has the ultimate right to rule, and overcoming sectional objections.

Lady Thatcher faced down and defeated the great industrial unions on these grounds nearly 40 years ago – because they were damaging the country and indeed destroying the jobs of their own members by obdurate folly.

They were a far more powerful force than today’s public-sector giants. Yet Ministers – most notably Education Secretary Gavin Williamson – seem to have forgotten they were given huge powers by Boris Johnson’s smashing Election victory such a short time ago. And with those powers came the responsibility to use them.

The teaching unions have no excuse or good reason to resist. Covid-19 barely affects the young at all, and other countries have successfully reopened (or continued to maintain) national education systems without tragedy. The unions just think they can get away with it because they have not been properly challenged.

The suggestion that the long-suffering public should have to undergo more closures and restrictions as the price for the reopening of schools is shocking. They have put up with more than enough already.

Mr Johnson and his Cabinet do not only have the force of democracy behind them, they have the greatly enhanced powers we have granted them in return for their promise to protect the country. They have the support of the media and of public opinion. It is time they used their political muscle in this matter. The whole future of the country in the end depends on it.

Get Britain back to work, Boris, and start with the schools of England. 

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Meghan Markle guided Prince Harry on his public ‘journey to wokeness’

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meghan markle guided prince harry on his public journey to wokeness

Meghan Markle helped guide Prince Harry on his very public ‘woke’ journey, the authors of the couple’s upcoming biography Finding Freedom have claimed.

The Duchess of Sussex, who is currently residing with her husband in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, played a pivotal role in helping her husband become more attuned to racism, according to authors Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand.

Speaking to the National Public Radio in the United States, Mr Scobie said: ‘Harry’s journey to wokeness has been very public. 

‘We’ve seen him learning and educating himself along the way, but this experience of witnessing Meghan face racist remarks and commentary would have been the first time he’d seen someone in his life or someone he was particularly close to affected by it in a certain way.

The Duchess of Sussex helped guide Prince Harry on his 'journey to wokeness', the authors of the couple's upcoming biography have claimed

The Duchess of Sussex helped guide Prince Harry on his 'journey to wokeness', the authors of the couple's upcoming biography have claimed

The Duchess of Sussex helped guide Prince Harry on his ‘journey to wokeness’, the authors of the couple’s upcoming biography have claimed

‘We talk about some of the more obvious examples in some of the media coverage but I think that the things that have flown under the radar are some of the othering of Meghan we’ve seen. 

‘We’ve sort of seen it repeatedly that she’s not one of us. And now, what do they mean by not one of us? 

‘And I think there are things like that which Harry’s really had to become more attuned to and learn to see when it happens in front of him. And Meghan would have been the person that guided him on that journey. ‘

During the interview, the authors also discussed the events that eventually led to the  duke and duchess to decide taking a step back from the royal family.

Caroline Durand said: ‘Harry really was looking out for his family. 

‘His wife felt aggrieved, and they thought that the best decision that they could make was to step back, have a little bit more privacy but still be in a situation where they could carry on their mission, devote themselves to the causes that were so important to them.’

Speaking on the reported tensions between Prince Harry and his brother, Mr Scobie added: ‘I think it’s one of the early stories you saw come out of this book was this conversation that took place between Harry and William where William seemingly gives sort of brotherly advice to Harry about sort of perhaps watching the speed at which his relationship with Meghan was progressing. 

‘And I think there’ve been some people have commented that that might have been a moment where Harry was too sensitive. 

‘But I think we need to really look at the overall picture here and what led up to that moment. Harry was already aware of some of the murmurings that were taking place behind his back within the royal household about Meghan.  

The couple's upcoming biography Finding Freedom was written by Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand

The couple's upcoming biography Finding Freedom was written by Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand

The couple’s upcoming biography Finding Freedom was written by Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand

‘He’d also experienced some of his own friends speaking about Meghan or making negative remarks behind her back that word had traveled back to him about. So when William sat down and had that conversation with him, that was the starting point.’ 

This week it was revealed that Prince Charles has remained in regular contact with his son despite being being hurt by revelations in the upcoming biography.

The biography offers an insights into Harry and Meghan’s relationships with his brother and sister-in-law, his father and the Royal Family as a whole. 

However, the Prince of Wales, who was said to have been hurt by some of the claims in the book, has been in regular contact with Prince Harry in the hope that the door can be kept open for a return, the Sun reports.

A royal insider told the paper: ‘Since his move to Los Angeles they have been in regular contact. Charles is not an avid user of texts but there are video and phone calls.

‘The book has never been a massive talking point between them and Charles is determined that it is not an obstacle. ‘

The Sussexes, who stepped down as working royals earlier this year, recently moved to a 14-acre estate in the famed 90210 postcode of Beverly Hills after flying from the Vancouver Island they were living on in March.     

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CHRISTOPHER STEVENS reviews last night’s TV: Moaning about a soaking on the flume? Don’t be so wet!

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christopher stevens reviews last nights tv moaning about a soaking on the flume dont be so wet

Inside Legoland: A World Of Wonder

Rating: rating showbiz 4

Rolling In It

Rating: rating showbiz 2

Royal watchers desperate for a glimpse of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex in Windsor won’t get much joy if they hang around outside the couple’s erstwhile home, Frogmore Cottage.

But they might have better luck if they check into one of the hotels at nearby Legoland. Among the 2,000 models of pirates, dinosaurs, pop stars and exotic flowers, guests might find life-size replicas in one corridor of Kate, William, Charles and Harry — built from Lego.

At least, Harry’s model was there last year when Inside Legoland: A World Of Wonder (C5) was filmed. Perhaps, like the real-life Duke himself, it has since disappeared.

Among the 2,000 models of pirates, pop stars and exotic flowers at Legoland (above), guests might find life-size replicas of Kate, William, Charles and Harry

Among the 2,000 models of pirates, pop stars and exotic flowers at Legoland (above), guests might find life-size replicas of Kate, William, Charles and Harry

Among the 2,000 models of pirates, pop stars and exotic flowers at Legoland (above), guests might find life-size replicas of Kate, William, Charles and Harry

The alternative would be that a Lego Meghan has been added to the display, and I wouldn’t envy the model-maker who has to get that job right. Imagine the ducal indignation if Her Grace was depicted wearing the wrong tiara.

Working at the theme park is already stressful enough, to judge from this lighthearted series. Visitors rush the turnstiles at opening time, determined to squeeze every minute of fun from the price of their ticket, but once inside many of them seem to spend the day queuing at the customer services desk to have a rant.

One choice gripe was that there weren’t enough staff to handle all the complaints. Now, how would anyone know that, if they hadn’t joined the queue to have a moan in the first place? The most popular complaint was that people were getting too wet on the water ride, Pirate Falls. If you’ve ever been on a water ride, you’ll appreciate that half the fun is getting soaked.

Prince Harry certainly knows this. He and his big brother famously rode the log flume with their mother at Thorpe Park on a family day out in 1993, and got drenched.

What was considered safe for royals in the Nineties might be grounds for a health and safety case today, so the maintenance team hurried out to make sure the bigger hoses were pointing away from riders on Pirate Falls.

That left the tricky problem of what to do with the smaller squirters that spurted from Lego frogs. Should these be regarded as a hazard to public safety too?

Eventually, an engineer made an executive decision. ‘Right,’ he said, ‘I’m turning the frogs back on.’

Doleful ballad of the weekend:

The Bollywood star Tabu, who gets top billing in A Suitable Boy (BBC1), launched into another of her dirge-like laments — then stopped, and started again. Each week, she sings twice. Is this ritual written into her contract?

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This was as dramatic as the programme got. Elsewhere, a small boy fell and scraped his knee, and a little girl was supremely unbothered after getting separated from her parents: she sat and watched a video in the Lost Children booth until they collected her.

A charmingly British holiday atmosphere hung over it all. Like Lego itself, the park seemed imbued with nostalgia.

Presenter Stephen Mulhern was hoping to draw on the same magic with his game show Rolling In It (ITV) — a quiz based on the penny-rollers in seaside amusement arcades.

Three contestants, helped out by three actors from Coronation Street, aimed giant coins down a ramp and onto a conveyor belt. Their prizes were determined by where the coins landed, with thousands of pounds depending on a lucky roll.

It was all a bit laborious, slowed down further by 15 multiple-choice quiz questions. These were mostly about pop, telly and celebs, though that didn’t help the player who had to guess which TV comedy featured ‘Mrs Slocombe’s pussy’.

She’d never heard of Are You Being Served? — ‘I’m young,’ she wailed — so she plumped for Keeping Up Appearances.

I shudder to think what Hyacinth Bucket, the glorious snob from that sitcom, would have made of such a vulgar question. But then, ‘Mrs Bouquet’ would never have admitted to watching ITV.

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Jamie Oliver’s everyday heroes: From perfect peppers to roasted broccoli

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jamie olivers everyday heroes from perfect peppers to roasted broccoli

We know that everyone cooks the same small repertoire of recipes, so I want to help you expand on that and arm you with some new favourites.

For the first time, I’ve looked at the data that shows what we’re putting into our shopping baskets, week in, week out, and have built meals around the 18 hero ingredients that kept appearing.

These recipes will give you new ideas for the ingredients you already know and love.

Let’s face it, life is busy, and these days we seem to have more and more demands on our time and headspace. 

We know that everyone cooks the same small repertoire of recipes, so I want to help you expand on that and arm you with some new favourites, writes Jamie Oliver

We know that everyone cooks the same small repertoire of recipes, so I want to help you expand on that and arm you with some new favourites, writes Jamie Oliver

We know that everyone cooks the same small repertoire of recipes, so I want to help you expand on that and arm you with some new favourites, writes Jamie Oliver

So this is about giving you inspiration on the food front for every day of the week.

We’re keeping things simple, pushing maximum flavour with minimum effort. We want fun, and we want solid, super-tasty recipes that consistently deliver.

The majority of ingredients will be easy to find in any food shop in any town in the country. As is often the case in cooking, the success of the recipes comes down to the quality of the ingredients you use.

Hero ingredient

Peppers are super-versatile. Try roasting them with other ‘nightshade’ veggies, such as chillies and tomatoes, or adding to curries, lasagne, pasta dishes and stir-fries. 

They also add crunch to salads.

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There’s not loads of stuff to buy for each recipe, so I’m hoping that will give you the excuse to trade up where you can, buying the best meat, fish or veggies you can find.

For your store cupboard, there are just five ingredients that I consider to be everyday staples: olive oil for cooking, extra-virgin olive oil for dressing and finishing dishes, red wine vinegar as a good all-rounder when it comes to acidity and balancing marinades, sauces or dressing and, of course, sea salt and black pepper for seasoning.

Cooking is simply impossible without these items at your fingertips and I believe every household should have them in stock.

We’ve included oil and vinegar in each individual recipe’s ingredients list where needed, although I’m presuming you’ll stock up on them before you start cooking.

One-pan wonders like the Stuffed red peppers involve minimum prep so you can let the oven do all the hard work. The clean-up after will be simple too.

Experiment with herbs and condiments

Herbs are a gift to any cook. Instead of buying them, why not grow the plants in the garden or in a pot on the windowsill? 

Herbs allow you to add single-minded flavour to a dish, without the need to over-season, which is good for everyone.

They’re also packed with incredible nutrition — we like that.

I use a lot of condiments in my new book 7 Ways, like mango chutney, curry pastes, black bean and teriyaki sauces, miso and pesto.

These are items you can find in all supermarkets, and of an extraordinary quality. They guarantee flavour and save hours of time in preparation. Most are long-lasting, which means you’re not under pressure to use them too quickly.

I have been criticised for using these so-called ‘cheat’ ingredients, but I think cheat ingredients help keep food exciting.

I’ve kept the equipment used pretty simple — a set of saucepans and non-stick ovenproof frying pans, a griddle and a shallow casserole pan, chopping boards, sturdy roasting trays and a decent set of knives will see you through.

If you want to save time, there are a few kitchen gadgets that will make your life a lot easier — like a speed-peeler, a box grater, and a pestle and mortar are fantastic for creating great texture and boosting flavour, and a blender and food processor are always a bonus, especially if you’re short on time!

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Stuffed red peppers

Serves 4  

Avocado, lime & feta cheese, qick black bean & smoked ham stew

Cook/prep time: 40 minutes 

  • 4 small red peppers
  • 200g sliced smoked higher-welfare ham
  • 1 onion
  • 2 x 400g tins of black beans
  • 1 x 250g packet cooked, mixed grains
  • 60g feta cheese
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 2 limes
  • Olive oill
  • Red wine vinegar

Preheat the oven to 200c/gas 6. Cut the tops off the peppers, pull out the seeds, then sit the lids and bases on the bars of the oven to start softening. 

Finely chop the ham and put in a large, non-stick ovenproof frying pan on a medium heat with one tablespoon of olive oil, stirring as you peel and finely chop the onion. 

Once the ham is crispy, stir in the onion to cook and soften for five minutes. Add a tablespoon of red wine vinegar, then the beans, juice and all. Remove the peppers from the oven and nestle the bases in the stew. 

Divide the grains and a little feta between them and sit the pepper lids ajar. Transfer to the oven for 20 minutes, or until the peppers are cooked through, then season the stew to perfection. 

Dice the avocado flesh, then toss with the juice of one lime and season. 

Spoon over the peppers, crumble over the remaining feta, and serve with lime wedges, for squeezing over. 

Stuffed red peppers

Stuffed red peppers

Stuffed red peppers

Stuffed red peppers
Energy 454kcal 
Fat  19g 
Sat Fat  5.2g 
Protein  27.4g 
Carbs  36.9g 
Sugars  11.6g 
Salt  1.7g 
Fibre  18.9g 

Roasted broccoli on romesco 

Creamy butter beans, smoked almonds, sardines & toast

Cook/prep time: 55 minutes 

Serves 4 

  • 2 heads of broccoli (375g each)
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 1 x 460g jar roasted red peppers
  • 320g ripe mixed-colour cherry tomatoes
  • 50g smoked almonds
  • 2 x 400g tins butter beans
  • 5 slices sourdough bread
  • 2 x 120g tins sardines from sustainable sources
  • Red wine vinegar
  • Olive oil

Preheat the oven to 180c/gas 4. Trim the broccoli stalks, then halve each head and place in a roasting tray. 

Peel and finely slice the garlic then add to the tray, tear in the drained peppers, then halve and add the cherry tomatoes. 

Toss with one tablespoon each of red wine vinegar and olive oil, and a pinch of sea salt and black pepper, then pull the broccoli halves to the top and roast for 40 minutes. 

Meanwhile, crush half the almonds in a pestle and mortar. Pour the butter beans, juice and all, into a small pan and simmer on a medium-high heat for ten to 15 minutes, or until the liquid has reduced. Remove the broccoli to a board, then put the tray’s contents in a blender. 

Add the remaining almonds, tear in one slice of bread and blitz until smooth, then season to perfection with red wine vinegar, salt and pepper. 

Toast the rest of the bread. Divide the romesco sauce and beans between warm plates. Sit the broccoli on top. 

Scatter over the crushed almonds and serve with sardines and hot toast on the side.

Roasted broccoli on romesco

Roasted broccoli on romesco

Roasted broccoli on romesco

Roasted broccoli on romesco
Energy 563kcal 
Fat  20.9g   
Sat Fat  3.6g   
Protein  39.1g   
Carbs  53.5g   
Sugars  11.8g   
Salt  1.7g   
Fibre  17.3g   

Broccoli & halloumi salad 

Sweet slow-roasted cherry tomatoes, golden peaches, mint & grains

Cook/prep time: 1 hour, 10 minutes

Serves 4  

  • 320g ripe mixed-colour cherry tomatoes
  • 1 head broccoli (375g)
  • 1 x 415g tin peach halves in juicel
  • 100g halloumi
  • 2 x 250g packets mixed, cooked grains
  • 8 mixed-colour olives (stone-in)
  • ½ bunch of mint (15g)
  • 4 tbsp natural yoghurt
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Red wine vinegar

Hero ingredient

Never overcook broccoli — it’s best with bite. Try the florets raw, steamed, stir-fried, sautéed or roasted. 

The stem, leaves and flowers are edible too. To prepare the stem, peel off the tough outer skin.

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Preheat the oven to 140c/gas 1. 

Halve the cherry tomatoes, toss with one tablespoon of olive oil and a pinch of sea salt and black pepper, and place cut-side up in a roasting tray. 

Roast for one hour, or until soft and sticky. Meanwhile, trim the tough end off the broccoli stalk. 

Cut off the florets and cook in boiling water for five minutes, then drain. 

Very finely slice the remaining broccoli stalk. Mix two tablespoons each of peach juice, extra virgin olive oil and red wine vinegar, then toss half with the broccoli stalk. 

In a large non-stick frying pan on a medium-high heat cook the halloumi, drained peach halves and broccoli florets until golden, while you heat the grains according to packet instructions. Squash and destone the olives.

On a serving platter, toss the grains with the remaining dressing. 

Arrange everything else on top, tearing the halloumi and any large mint leaves, then spoon over the yoghurt.

Broccoli & halloumi salad

Broccoli & halloumi salad

Broccoli & halloumi salad

Broccoli & halloumi salad
Energy 456kcal 
Fat 20.9g 
Sat Fat 6.9g 
Protein  17.2g 
Carbs  48.7g 
Sugars 13g 
Salt  2g 
Fibre  9.2g 

Broccoli & cheese pierogi 

Super-quick sweet cherry tomato & garlic sauce with chives

Cook/prep time: 50 minutes

Serves 2  

  • 100g self-raising flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 1 free-range large egg
  • 1 head of broccoli (375g)
  • 25g Cheddar cheese
  • ½ bunch chives (10g)
  • 1 tbsp soured cream
  • Olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 x 400g tin quality cherry tomatoes

Mix the flour, egg and a pinch of sea salt until you have a smooth dough, adding a splash of water, if needed. 

Knead on a flour-dusted surface for two minutes, cover and pop into the fridge. Trim the tough end off the broccoli stalk. Remove the florets, halving any larger ones, and chop the remaining stalk into 2cm chunks. 

Put one third of the florets aside, then cook the rest with the chopped stalk in a pan of boiling water for 8 minutes. 

Drain and mash well, then finely grate in the cheese, finely chop the chives and add half, stir in the soured cream, season to perfection and leave to cool. Peel and finely slice the garlic. 

Divide the dough into eight, then roll out each piece into a 14cm circle, dusting with flour as you go. Divide up equal amounts of the filling on one side of each circle. 

Lightly brush the exposed pastry with water, then fold it over the filling, twisting along the edge to seal, like in the picture.

Put a large non-stick frying pan on a medium heat with half a tablespoon of olive oil, the pierogi and the reserved broccoli florets. Pour in boiling kettle water until it is 1cm deep, cover and boil for four minutes. 

Uncover and fry the pierogi and broccoli on one side for four minutes, or until the water has evaporated and the bases are golden. 

Meanwhile, place one teaspoon of olive oil and the garlic in the pan you used to boil your broccoli, stir until lightly golden, then pour in the tomatoes, simmer for two minutes and season to perfection. 

Serve it all together, sprinkled with the remaining chives.

Broccoli & cheese pierogi

Broccoli & cheese pierogi

Broccoli & cheese pierogi

Broccoli & cheese pierogi
Energy 402kcal 
Fat 14.7g 
Sat Fat  5.5g 
Protein  22.2g 
Carbs  48.4g 
Sugars  9.5g 
Salt  1.5g 
Fibre  8.1g 

Cauli chicken pot pie

Serves 4  

Smoked pancetta, sweet cherry tomatoes & puff pastry

Cook/prep time: 50 minutes  

  • 1 head of cauliflower (800g)
  • 1 red onion
  • 4 free-range skinless, boneless chicken thighs
  • 4 rashers of higher-welfare smoked pancetta
  • 160g ripe cherry tomatoes
  • 1 heaped tsp wholegrain mustard
  • 2 heaped tsp runny honey
  • 1 x 320g sheet all-butter puff pastry
  • Olive oil
  • Red wine vinegar

Preheat the oven to 220c/gas 7. Click off and discard only the tatty outer leaves of the cauliflower, then cut it into quarters. 

Hero ingredient

Cauliflower is great with spices and is delicious roasted with dried chilli, cumin and coriander seeds. 

The leaves and stalks are also edible and can be added, along with the florets, to dishes like cauliflower cheese.

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Blanch in a pan of boiling water for five minutes, then drain. Meanwhile, peel the onion and cut into sixths. Halve the chicken thighs. 

In a 28cm non-stick ovenproof frying pan on a medium-high heat, fry the chicken and onion with one tablespoon of olive oil, a pinch of sea salt and lots of black pepper until lightly golden, stirring occasionally.

Add the cauliflower to the pan. Cook and turn for five minutes, then push it all to one side of the pan and add the pancetta to crisp up. 

Now add the tomatoes, mustard, honey and one tablespoon of red wine vinegar, and mix well. 

When it’s looking really golden, roll the pastry out a little to fit the pan and place it over the top, using a wooden spoon to push it right into the edges. 

Bake for 25 minutes at the bottom of the oven, or until golden and puffed up. Using oven gloves, pop a large plate over the pan and confidently but very carefully turn out and serve. 

Cauli chicken pot pie

Cauli chicken pot pie

Cauli chicken pot pie

Cauli chicken pot pie
Energy  615kcal 
Fat  34.6g 
Sat Fat  16.9g 
Protein  30.3g 
Carbs  45.7g 
Sugars  14.7g 
Salt  1.4g 
Fibre  6.3g 
Extracted from 7 ways: Easy Ideas For Every Day Of The Week by Jamie Oliver, published by Michael Joseph on August 20, 2020, at £26. © Jamie Oliver 2020

Extracted from 7 ways: Easy Ideas For Every Day Of The Week by Jamie Oliver, published by Michael Joseph on August 20, 2020, at £26. © Jamie Oliver 2020

Extracted from 7 ways: Easy Ideas For Every Day Of The Week by Jamie Oliver, published by Michael Joseph on August 20, 2020, at £26. © Jamie Oliver 2020

Extracted from 7 ways: Easy Ideas For Every Day Of The Week by Jamie Oliver, published by Michael Joseph on August 20, 2020, at £26. 

© Jamie Oliver 2020.

We’ve partnered with WHSmith to offer readers the chance to buy 7 Ways for only £12. 

Pre-order online from today or buy in-store from August 20, 2020.  

See page 60 for details and conditions.

Photography © Levon Biss

Jamie: Keep Cooking Family Favourites will air on Channel 4 at 8pm from Monday, August 17.  

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