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Rhubarb and date muffins

Seasonal recipes

Rhubarb and date muffins

Tasted and approved by James Bourn, Chef Scholarship


300g rhubarb, thinly chopped
2tbsp soft brown sugar
350g self-raising flour
1tsp cinnamon
120g caster sugar
2 eggs
200ml skimmed milk
70g low-fat spread, melted
100g apple sauce
70g pitted dates, chopped


  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/fan 180°C/gas 6. Mix the rhubarb with the brown sugar and put in an ovenproof dish. Bake for 15 min or until the rhubarb is tender, then leave to cool. Line 2 muffin tins with 16 paper or silicon cases.
  2. Put the flour in a large bowl with the cinnamon and caster sugar. Beat the eggs, milk and spread with the apple sauce, then add to the flour mix with the cooled rhubarb and dates. Mix gently but don’t over-mix – the mixture should be lumpy.
  3. Divide the mixture among the cases and bake for 25 min or until risen and golden brown. Cool completely.




Thai prawn cakes with dipping sauce and rocket salad

Tasted and approved by Paul Docherty, Chef Scholarship


400g sustainable king prawns, fresh or frozen

Large bunch fresh coriander

Zest and juice 2 limes
15g fresh ginger, grated
4 tbsp Thai fish sauce
4 spring onions, finely sliced
1 medium free-range egg, lightly beaten
100g fresh breadcrumbs
3 tbsp sweet chilli sauce
Vegetable oil for frying
Rocket to serve (optional)


  1. Put 300g of the prawns in a food processor with half the coriander, the lime zest, ginger, 1 tbsp of the fish sauce, most of the spring onions, the beaten egg and breadcrumbs. Season well, then pulse until the mix comes together. Chop the rest of the prawns quite finely, then stir into the mixture. Shape into 12 patties, put on a plate and chill for 15 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, mix the remaining 3 tbsp fish sauce with the lime juice and sweet chilli sauce, then add the remaining sliced spring onion. Heat 1cm oil in a large frying pan, then fry the prawn cakes for 3-4 minutes on each side until golden and cooked through.
  3. Toss the remaining coriander with half the dressing (and, if you like, rocket). Serve the cakes and the leaves with the remaining dressing for dipping

Gnocchi gratin with broccoli and spinach

Tasted and approved by Ted Lindsay, Chef Scholarship


1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
2 heaped tbsp plain flour
350ml milk
280g light cream cheese
100g spinach
100g kale
1 small broccoli head, cut into small florets
600g ready-made gnocchi
30g grated parmesan or vegetarian alternative


  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan and fry the onion over a medium heat for 5 minutes or until it starts to soften. Add the flour and fry for a minute more before gradually whisking in the milk. Bring to a simmer, stirring constantly until the sauce thickens and bubbles, then reduce the heat and stir in the cream cheese. Turn off the heat.
  2. Heat the grill to medium-high. Boil a large saucepan of water. Put the kale in a colander and pour over a kettle of boiling water. Drain, refresh with cold water, then squeeze out as much water as possible. Add the gnocchi and broccoli to the boiling water and simmer for 4-5 minutes, then drain and pat dry. Stir the veg and gnocchi into the sauce, then pour into a 1.5 litre baking dish. Sprinkle over the grated cheese and grill for 15 minutes or until golden. 

Easy lamb tagine

Tasted and approved by Debbie Relfe, Personal Assistant


400g lamb leg steaks
2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion
2 garlic cloves
2 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp ground ginger
Pinch of cinnamon
400g can chopped tomatoes
200ml chicken stock
100g pitted prunes
1 tbsp ground almonds
A handful chopped fresh coriander


  1. Brown 400g lamb leg steaks, cubed, in 2 tbsp olive oil in a pan. Set aside. Add 1 onion, sliced, and 2 garlic cloves, chopped, to the pan and fry for 5 minutes.
  2. Add 2 tsp each ground coriander and cumin, 1 tsp ground ginger and a pinch of cinnamon, and fry for 2 minutes.
  3. Add the lamb and a 400g can chopped tomatoes and 200ml chicken stock. Add 100g pitted prunes, chopped. Simmer for 40-45 minutes.
  4. Stir in 1 tbsp ground almonds and a handful chopped fresh coriander. Serve with couscous.



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Ian Mullins
Ian MullinsDirector of Education, LVS Ascot