It's the school holidays and keeping the kids fed and happy can be a challenge. But these recipes make it fun and easy – and the kids might even want to help.
No-frills sausage rolls
Simple and satisfying, these sausage rolls are fun to make with the kids, and even more fun to eat.
Makes about 24
5 large pork sausages, your favourite kind
300g flaky puff pastry
1 beaten egg
Tomato sauce, or chutney, to serve
1. Heat the oven to 200C. Line an ovenproof tray with baking paper.
2. Hold each sausage under cold running water as you slit the skins with a sharp knife and remove them (the cold water makes it easier to do this). Keep the sausage shapes intact and drain on paper towels.
3. Roll the pastry out on a lightly floured surface to make a rectangle about 30cm by 40cm.
4. Place enough of the sausages end to end (you will have to cut them to fit) along one of the short sides of the pastry. Brush some egg along the bottom of the sausage meat so that the pastry will stick when rolled over.
5. Carefully roll the pastry over the sausages so there is a 2cm wide double thickness of pastry under the sausage roll.
6. Cut along the pastry so you have one long sausage roll with the pastry join underneath.
7. Repeat for the remaining sausages. You will have two long sausage rolls.
8. Place on the paper-lined tray, pastry joins underneath. Mark each roll into 10 equal pieces with shallow cuts with a knife. (Don't cut right through — you do that after they are cooked.) Brush with beaten egg.
9. Refrigerate for 30 minutes then place in the oven for 25 minutes or until very well cooked and browned (don't undercook them).
10. Remove from the oven and slice the rolls where you have marked them.
11. Cool a little then serve with tomato sauce (or your favourite chutney).
- Recipe by Ray McVinnie
Black bean quesadillas
With a packet of tortilla on hand, quesadilla are the quickest thing to make for an easy lunch. I will often stick two together with pesto, ham and cheese and place into a hot frying pan for three minutes each side, and then cut in wedges and eat. These black bean ones are a little more substantial but well worth taking a few more minutes. Taco seasoning is available from all supermarkets in varying heats. Add chicken or shredded pork for the meat-eater. Up to your interpretation, but guaranteed to keep everyone in the family happy. When your teenagers are hungry, let them loose in the kitchen to make these.
1 Tbsp oil
1 onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 green chilli, chopped finely
1 Tbsp taco seasoning mix
1 tin chopped tomatoes, 420g
1 tsp sugar
420g can black beans
1 cup corn kernels
2 spring onions, sliced
½ cup fresh coriander, chopped, plus extra to serve
1 ½ cups tasty cheese, grated
4 large tortilla wraps
150g sour cream, to serve
1. Heat the oil in a frying pan to a medium heat. Add the onion, garlic and chilli. Cook for 4 or 5 minutes until softened. Add the taco seasoning, tomatoes and sugar. Cook for 10 minutes until the mixture has thickened.
2. Add the black beans and corn. Continue to cook for 5 minutes. Stir through the spring onions and coriander, then season with salt and pepper.
3. Heat the tortillas in the oven for 3 minutes to make them pliable.
4. Spread the mixture over the soft tortilla. Sprinkle over the cheese and coriander. Fold the tortilla in half, then half again.
5. Place on to a baking tray and back into the oven for 8-10 minutes until the cheese is melted and the tortilla a little crispy.
6. Enjoy hot with a dollop of sour cream.
- Recipe by Angela Casley
Mini cheerio pies
These "pies" are designed not to have pastry. They are a quick to make and bake pie that can be adapted to suit any youngster, and they taste pretty good with a bit of tomato sauce on the side. A grown-up version may include diced chorizo, feta or blue cheese.
2 cups kūmara, or potato, diced
½ cup milk
2 courgettes, grated
1 Tbsp fresh mixed herbs, chopped
100g cheddar cheese, grated
6 cheerio sausages
2 Tbsp breadcrumbs, or panko crumbs
1. Heat oven to 180C. Place 6 large baking paper cups into large muffin trays and lightly grease.
2. Place kūmara in a pot of cold salted water, bring to the boil and gently simmer for 5 minutes. Drain and cool.
3. Whisk eggs and milk, then add the kūmara, courgettes, herbs and half the cheese, and season with salt and pepper.
4. Spoon mix into cups, sprinkle remaining cheese over the top, then place a cheerio in the centre of each pie.
5. Sprinkle with breadcrumbs. Bake for 20-25 minutes.
- Recipe by Geoff Scott