5 Meals, 5 Nights, No Waste: Master Smoked Trout And Chilli Vegetables in 15 Minutes

Plus a creamy chicken casserole and veggie carbonara...

5 Meals, 5 Nights, No Waste:

by Joanne Gould |

This week, your meal plan is filled with quick and easy dishes. Get ready for the dreamiest filled baked potato, a very low-maintenance Friday night Gammon and egg traybake plus some mid-week smoked trout to show off for dinner guests without any of the hassle.

Shopping List

2 gammon steaks (check they are not made from reformed pork, many supermarket ones are)

4 chicken thighs (fillets or bone-in)

2 hot smoked trout or hot smoked salmon fillets

200g crème fraiche

6 eggs



1 bunch asparagus

2 leeks

600g mushrooms

4 large sweet potatoes

1 bunch fresh mint

1 lime

1 red chilli

1 lemon

Mixture of green veg (I used frozen spinach, soya beans and peas)

Olive oil


1 tin black beans

Tomato puree


Cajun seasoning

Monday – Mushroom & asparagus carbonara, 25 mins

Monday – Mushroom & asparagus carbonara, 25 mins

A veggie version of the classic Roman pasta dish – no cream required

Roughly chop a third of the mushrooms and dry fry on a high heat in a very large pan for five minutes. Snap the asparagus stems, halve the tips and add to the pan (keep the stems) with a knob or two of butter and a crushed garlic clove. Cook for another few minutes until the asparagus is softened but still firm and the garlic is fragrant then turn off the heat.

Boil the spaghetti in heavily salted water (it should taste like the sea) along with the asparagus stems for extra flavour for 9 minutes unless your packet says differently.

While that’s cooking, whisk together two eggs and at least 80g of grated parmesan. Set aside.

Do not drain the pasta once it’s cooked, but lift it out using tongs or a pasta server and add to the asparagus mushroom pan, reserving the pasta water. Pour over the egg and parmesan mixture and fold it in gently so that it doesn’t scramble. If it looks too sticky or dry, add some of the pasta water. Serve with lots of black pepper.

NOTE: If you are vegetarian do check the parmesan is free from rennet. If you are not, feel free to add lardons or pancetta for a meatier, more indulgent dish.

Tuesday – Baked sweet potato with black beans, mushrooms and mint salsa, 45 mins

Tuesday – Baked sweet potato with black beans, mushrooms and mint salsa, 45 mins

A super nutritious and flavoursome jacket potato topping, using sweet potatoes for added vitamin A & C

Bake the sweet potatoes for about 40 mins at 180C.

While they are cooking, make the bean filling by dry frying half of the remaining mushrooms in a medium sized saucepan, adding a teaspoon of olive oil after a few minutes. Add a tablespoon of Cajun spice, stir, then pour in the black beans and a tablespoon of tomato puree then let it all bubble away on a low heat while you make the salsa. Set aside one or two sprigs of mint for tomorrow’s dinner, then strip the leaves from the rest of the stems and place in a pestle and mortar with a garlic clove and some rock salt then grind well (if you don’t have a pestle and mortar a blender is fine too), adding a tablespoon of olive oil, a tablespoon of water and the juice of a lime until it’s a runny paste consistency. Serve spooned over the beans on the jacket sweet potatoes.

NOTE: If you have any other bits of herbs that need using, add them to the salsa (coriander, parsley, basil, oregano all ideal).

Wednesday – Smoked trout with minty green chilli veg, 15 mins

Wednesday – Smoked trout with minty green chilli veg, 15 mins

A light, bright and zippy weekday dinner full of veggie goodness

Wash and finely slice the leek, discarding only the very ends. Fry in a large non-stick pan with two tablespoons of olive oil for five minutes. Add two finely sliced garlic cloves to the pan and continue to fry for a few more minutes. Now finely chop the red chilli and add to the pan along with any further veg you are using (I used peas, soya beans and frozen spinach) and continue to cook for three more minutes. Chop the last of the mint and add to the pan with plenty of salt, pepper and the zest of a lemon. Now lay the trout on top of the veg, turn the heat right down and put a lid on just to warm the fish through. Serve with small dollops of crème fraiche dotted randomly around the veg.

NOTE: Green veg that will also work well with this recipe include: button sprouts, sliced green beans, chopped asparagus, baby broad beans and finely chopped cabbage. Swap the fish for a piece of cooked chicken if you prefer.

Thursday – Creamy chicken & mushroom casserole, 40 mins

Thursday – Creamy chicken & mushroom casserole, 40 mins

A springy quick chicken casserole that isn’t as calorie laden as it tastes thanks to the crème fraiche and mounds of veg

Wash and finely chop the last leek, discarding only the very ends. Fry in a large frying pan or oven proof casserole dish with a knob of butter and teaspoon of olive oil until they start to really soften (8 mins or so). Chop any large mushrooms in half and add them all to the pan with a few crushed garlic cloves and leave to saute away for another minute, then scoop everything to one side of the pan and brown the chicken off in the other half for a minute or two each side. Mix everything together, then add in the crème fraiche, 50ml of water, stir and transfer to the oven for 30 mins at 180C. Check the chicken is cooked through then season and serve with some crusty bread, rice or mash.

Friday – Gammon egg & chips traybake, 30 mins

Friday – Gammon egg & chips traybake, 30 mins

A nostalgic DIY oven meal to round off the week

Peel the last two sweet potatoes and cut into wedges. Put them on a baking tray with two teaspoons of olive oil and some salt and rub into the wedges. Bake for 20 minutes at 190C then add the gammon steaks to the tray for the last ten minutes. Serve with two fried eggs each and condiments of your choice. Some peas wouldn’t go amiss either.

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