This easy vegetarian one-pan dish is quick to prepare and will help you to get your 5-a-day. Treat yourself to whole ricotta cheeses and seasonal veg
- 6 banana shallots, quartered
- 90ml olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
- 1 large lemon, zested and juiced
- small pack basil, roughly chopped
- small pack dill, roughly chopped
- 2 x 250g pouches cooked Puy lentils
- 150g spinach
- 2 x 250g whole ricotta
- 400g cherry tomatoes on the vine
MethodPut the shallots in a medium-sized roasting tin, drizzle over 2 tbsp olive oil and season. Roast for 15 mins until golden brown and beginning to soften. Meanwhile, to make a dressing, whisk the remaining olive oil with the lemon zest and juice, stir through half the herbs and season.
- 140g ricotta, from a 250g pot, drained
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, plus extra to serve
- 1 tbsp coriander seed
- ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1-2 tsp pomegranate molasses
- Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 6. Turn the cheese upside down on a chopping board, then slice off the top two-thirds (use what’s left in a pasta or with chopped soft herbs as a dip). Oil a small ovenproof dish with 2 tsp olive oil, then put the ricotta in.
- Using a pestle and mortar, roughly crush the coriander seeds. Add 1 scant tsp salt and pepper and mix in. Gently press on all around the outside of the cheese to create a coriander crust.
- Drizzle over 1 tsp olive oil and bake for 20 mins or until starting to brown. Cool slightly before drizzling liberally with pomegranate molasses and oil. Serve in the dish, warm or at room temperature.
- 3 x 250g/9oz tubs ricotta
- 2 eggs
- 100g Parmesan (or vegetarian alternative), finely grated
- 4 large tomatoes - a mix of colours looks good
- handful good-quality black olives, stones removed
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
- ¼ tsp caster sugar
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- small bunch basil, leaves only
- Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Beat the ricotta and eggs together, fold in most of the Parmesan, then season to taste. Line a 900g/2lb loaf tin with parchment, then scoop the ricotta into the tin. Level the top, scatter with the remaining cheese, then bake for 35 mins or until set and golden. Let cool, then turn it out. You can do this a day ahead.
- Slice the tomatoes fairly thickly, then very roughly chop the olives. Whisk the olive oils, vinegar, sugar, garlic, olives and seasoning together. Just before you serve, roughly chop a few of the basil leaves and stir most into the dressing.
- To serve, slice the ricotta and put onto plates. Toss the tomatoes with most of the basil and a little dressing. Serve alongside the ricotta, drizzle dressing over and scatter with remaining basil.
- 1¼kg small vine or small plum tomato
- a sprinkling of golden caster sugar
- 4 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
- 1 large aubergine (about 450g/1lb)
- 500g rigatoni
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 85g black olive, stoned and chopped
- 2 good handfuls of basil leaves, plus extra for serving
- 450g buffalo mozzarella
- 50g Parmesan, freshly grated, plus extra for serving
- Preheat the oven to fan 140C/conventional 160C/gas 3. Halve the tomatoes through their equator, rather than their core. Stand them cut-side up on a shallow baking tray (I use a nonstick Swiss roll tin). Scatter a little salt, pepper and sugar over the cut surfaces and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil. Roast for 45 minutes.
- Meanwhile, slice the aubergine into rounds, brush both sides with oil and spread out in one layer on another tray. After the tomatoes have been roasting for 45 minutes, put the aubergines in with them and roast for another 45 minutes.
- Towards the end of the time, cook the pasta in plenty of gently boiling well-salted water until nearly al dente – it should be undercooked because it finishes off in the oven. Drain well and tip into a large bowl. Have ready 4 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil mixed with the crushed garlic and chopped olives. Toss the oil mixture through the pasta and turn half of it into a 2-21⁄2 litre ovenproof dish.
- Remove the tomatoes and aubergines from the oven. (You can prepare them up to 24 hours ahead.)
- Turn up the oven to fan 180C/conventional 200C/gas 6. Scatter half the tomatoes and their juices over the pasta in the dish. Roughly tear the basil leaves and scatter on top. Drain the mozzarella, pat dry with kitchen paper, then slice very thinly. Lay two-thirds of the slices over the tomatoes. Grind black pepper over, and scatter over the aubergine. Add the rest of the pasta, top with the remaining tomatoes and mozzarella and then the parmesan. (Can be made up to here 3-4 hours in advance). Bake for 20-25 minutes, until piping hot and the top is extra crusty. Serve hot with a sprinkle of basil and extra parmesan.