Dad's a cool guy. He's a roughhouse wrestler, a tickle fiend, a patty-cake pro, and a homework helper. Plus you can usually count on him for one classic "Dad" dinner – nobody beats his spaghetti with meatballs or grilled dogs. Why not surprise the man of the house this Father's Day with a gourmet dish or two that you prepare with the smallest chefs in your house? The recipes are easier than you think – so much so that Dad will swear you were in the kitchen all day. Once he finds out the secret, he may even ask for the recipes!
- 1 cup long-grain rice
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- 1 tsp smoked paprika or ordinary paprika
- 1⁄2 red bell pepper, diced
- 2 1⁄2 cups chicken broth
- 2 Tbsp tomato paste
- 1 1⁄2 cups (about 6 oz) cooked salad-size shrimp
- 1 1⁄2 cups (about 6 oz) cooked chicken
- 1⁄2 cup frozen peas
- Handful of parsley leaves
- Put the rice in a colander and rinse well under cold running water. Leave to drain.
- Heat the oil in a large nonstick frying pan or wok and cook the onion for 5 minutes, until soft. Add the garlic, paprika, bell pepper, and rice and cook for 3 minutes, stirring constantly.
- Mix together the broth and tomato paste and add to the pan. Bring to a simmer and cook for around 15 minutes, until the rice is tender and the broth has been absorbed. If the pan becomes too dry, add a little water or extra broth. While the rice is cooking, shred the chicken into small pieces and roughly chop the parsley leaves.
- Stir the chicken, shrimp, and peas into the paella and cook for a further 2 minutes, until everything is hot. Scatter the chopped parsley on top and serve.
Makes 4 servings
Fruity Chicken Curry
- 1 Tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 onion, peeled and chopped
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- 1 to 2 tsp mild curry paste
- 1 tsp soy sauce
- 2⁄3 cup coconut milk
- 1 chicken stock cube dissolved in 2⁄3 cup boiling water
- Piece of lemongrass, about 2 inches
- 2 chicken breasts, cubed
- 1 medium apple, thinly sliced
- 3⁄4 cup frozen peas
- 3 scallions, thinly sliced
- Salt and pepper
- Cilantro, sliced lime, and boiled jasmine rice to serve
- Heat the oil in a wok. Add the onion and cook for 5 to 6 minutes, until soft. Add the garlic and curry paste and cook for 1 minute. Then pour in the soy sauce, coconut milk, and chicken stock, stirring constantly.
- Add the lemongrass, chicken, and apple. Bring the curry to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 6 to 8 minutes or until the chicken has cooked through.
- Add the peas and scallions and cook for a further 1 to 2 minutes. Season to taste with a little salt and pepper.
- Remove the lemongrass and spoon the curry onto plates. Serve with a sprinkling of cilantro, a few slices of lime, and boiled jasmine rice. To shape the rice into a star, grease a star-shaped mold with sunflower oil. Spoon in cooked rice and tamp down; then flip mold over and carefully slip off of rice.
Makes 4 servings
Molten Dark & White Chocolate Cakes
- 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips (we used Ghirardelli)
- 1 stick butter, plus extra for greasing
- 1 egg plus 2 yolks, at room temperature
- 3 Tbsp superfine sugar
- 1⁄2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 Tbsp cornstarch
- 3 white chocolate truffles (we used Lindt Lindor)
- Vanilla ice cream, to serve
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Generously butter 3 large (6 oz) ramekins and line the bases with parchment paper.
- Melt the chocolate and butter in a heat-proof bowl over a saucepan of warm water, making sure the bottom of the bowl doesn't touch the water. Stir occasionally, until smooth. Set aside to cool slightly.
- Put egg, yolks, sugar, and vanilla in a large bowl and beat with an electric mixer on high, until very pale and about 4 times original volume. This will take 4 to 6 minutes. Fold the cornstarch and chocolate into the eggs until thoroughly combined.
- Spoon 2 tablespoons of the batter into the base of the ramekins and set one truffle in each. Spoon remaining batter over the truffles. Bake on a cookie sheet for 10 to 12 minutes, until just set on the surface.
- Remove the cakes from the oven and let them sit for 2 minutes. Turn cakes onto plates, serve with ice cream, and enjoy!
Makes 3 cakes
- Canola or vegetable oil, for greasing
- 2 cups (6 oz) graham crackers
- 3⁄4 stick butter
- 1 cup (5 oz) strawberries plus extra to decorate
- 2 Tbsp sugar
- 2 Tbsp water
- 1 3-oz package strawberry gelatin, such as Jell-O (not sugar-free)
- 3⁄4 cup plus 1 Tbsp heavy cream
- 7 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
- Grease four small heart-shaped cake pans with canola oil. Crush graham crackers into fine crumbs in a plastic bag using a rolling pin. Pour into a bowl. Melt the butter in a saucepan, pour it onto the cracker crumbs, and mix thoroughly. Stir with a wooden spoon until well combined, then divide between the heart-shaped pans. Press the crumbs firmly into the base of the pans. Put the pans on a cookie sheet, transfer to the refrigerator, and leave to set.
- Quarter the strawberries and put into a small saucepan with the sugar and water. Heat gently, stirring, until the sugar dissolves. Simmer for 2 to 3 minutes, until the strawberries are soft. Remove from heat and stir in the gelatin until dissolved. Blend until smooth (you can also pass through a strainer to remove seeds). Leave to cool to room temperature.
- Put the cream in a bowl and whip the cream to soft peaks. In a separate bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth, then beat in the strawberry mixture. Fold in the whipped cream.
- Spoon the cheesecake filling onto the cracker base in the cake pans. Smooth the surface with a metal spatula. Refrigerate for about 2 hours, until set.
- To serve, dip a thin-bladed knife into hot water and run it around the inside edge of the pans. Unmold the cheesecakes and decorate with a few extra strawberries on top.
Makes 4 cakes