Welcome to Mum&sons

My two eldest boys challenged me to start a cooking blog with simple recipes that we can cook together - and my youngest one has now joined in. I am hoping they pick up some cooking and photograph skills... or that at least they learn to design and run a blog.


This is so easy that it hardly qualifies for a recipe, but it makes a nice quick 'comfort food' lunch. You need:
- a roll of puff pastry
- ham (enough slices to cover half of the of pastry, normally 4 or 5)
- cheese (cheddar or edam or alike - again 4 or 5 slices. You can also do this with grated cheese)
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons of creme fraiche or three tablespoons of double cream

Preheat the oven at 200 degrees. Cover a tray with baking paper. Put the puff pastry on top and prickle it with a fork all over the surface. Put ham slices on top of half of the pastry. Then put the cheese slices on top of the ham. Beat the egg with the creme fraiche and pour it on top of the cheese. Fold the uncovered half of the puff pastry over the cheese. Press the borders with a fork (as in the picture) so that the egg and melted cheese does not get out of the pastry. Prickle the top of the pastry with a fork (you can also paint the pastry at this stage with a beaten egg if you want it shinny). Bake for 20 minutes. Eat warm.

The children helped with it all except for handling the trays in and out of the oven.


You need:
- 2 aubergines
- 1 onion (chopped into small cubes)
- three cloves of garlic (chopped)
- 3-ish tablespoons of olive oil
- salt
- 1 tablespoons of capers
- a handful of green olives - you can use black olives if you prefer them.
- 2 tablespoons of chopped parsley
- a handful of pine nuts
- 2 peppers
- juice of half a lemon
- 1 tablespoon of (good) red wine vinegar

Preheat the oven at 220 degrees. Put the aubergines on a tray and rub them with a little bit of olive oil. Put the peppers on the tray as well and roast them all for 40 minutes. Take them out of the oven, peel the aubergines and the peppers and chop them into small cubes.
Separately fry the onions on some olive oil until they start getting golden. Add the garlic to the pan and continue frying them for another 5 minutes or so until they start getting brown. Add this to the aubergines (including the frying oil).
Toast the pinenuts on a pan and add them to the aubergines too. Then add the capers, olives, parsley, lemon juice and vinegar. Taste and add some salt of necessary.

The flavours of this dish are very strong, but children seem to like it (though my children, understandably, fish out the cappers). You can keep the skin of the aubergines on (which makes a nicer and prettier dish) but children seem to prefer it without the skin.