Barbecued thai chicken legs

Slash the chicken legs all over with a knife.

Pick the coriander leaves and put them to one side. Add the stalks to a food processor with the rest of the ingredients and whizz to make a paste.

Rub the paste into the slashes and all over the chicken legs.

Tropical fruit salad

Trim the outside skin off the pineapple and cut out the hard core that runs down its centre. Lay it on a chopping board and cut it into chunks with a sharp knife. Place in a bowl.

Cut the flesh of the mango off the stone and scoop out the flesh from the skin with a spoon. Place into the bowl with the pineapple. Cut the papaya in half and scoop out the black seeds inside. Scoop the fruit out of the skin in the same way as with the mango. Place into the bowl.

Greek salad

This salad is known and loved around the world. Those of you who’ve been lucky enough to eat this salad in Greece will know that when it’s made well it’s absolute heaven. Hopefully this recipe will help you achieve the big bold authentic flavours that it's known for. The trick is to pay attention to the small details that make it so wonderful: things like finding the ripest tomatoes, good Greek olive oil, beautiful olives, creamy feta and lovely herbs.

I think it’s quite nice to have different shapes and sizes in a salad, so cut your medium tomato into wedges, halve the cherry tomatoes and slice the beef tomato into large rounds. Put all the tomatoes into a large salad bowl. Slice the onion very finely so it’s wafer thin and add to the tomatoes. Scratch a fork down the sides of the cucumber so it leaves deep grooves in the skin, then cut it into thick slices. Deseed your pepper, slice it into rings and add them to the salad along with the cucumber.

Tomato soup

I've made all sorts of different tomato soups over the years, and this is probably one of the simplest and tastiest. Here's the trick... if you go down to your local market at the end of the day you may find they are selling off tomatoes cheap. More than likely the seller thinks they are over-ripe, but they are more probably just perfect and will make great soup. If you can't get these, buy tomatoes two or three days before you need them, but don't keep them in the fridge as they won't ripen. Leave them on a windowsill to get ripe. If there's a choice then have a taste – you'll be amazed how different they can be, so choose the ones that taste the best. The second trick is the slow cooking, which makes them very sweet. Best served in warm bowls or mugs at the table with some really fresh bread.

1 steak 2 sauces

As a lover of good steak, I had quite a few conversations with people in LA about how they liked to eat theirs. This dish is a result of me soaking up all those vibes. I’m pairing a cooked sauce, made with peanuts and spices, with a fresh green salsa that is going to send your tastebuds into orbit. If you notice that your peanut sauce is lighter than mine, don’t worry. The peanuts I used in LA were just darker. It will still taste delicious.

Take your steaks out of the fridge and let them get up to room temperature while you make your peanut sauce. Put a dry frying pan on a medium heat and toast the nuts and sesame seeds for a few minutes until lightly browned. Add the oregano, cumin seeds, thyme, chipotle chilli and garlic and cook for another minute or so. Tip into a liquidizer with the extra virgin olive oil, rum, lime juice, fresh chilli, salt and pepper, and 200ml of water. Whiz until shiny and smooth, then have a taste and adjust with a bit more salt, chilli or lime juice if needed. Put to one side.

To make your salsa, get yourself a good knife and a big chopping board. Set aside a few of the coriander leaves, then chop the top of the bunch, stalks and all, with the mint leaves, garlic, chilli, spring onions and tomatoes until it’s all very fine – watch your fingers here! Sprinkle over a generous pinch of salt and pepper, then add most of the lime juice and a good lug of extra virgin olive oil. Mix together on the board, taste it, season with more salt, pepper, lime juice or chilli, and put it into a bowl ready to go.

Baked eggs

1 Preheat oven to 180C/gas 4. Butter 4 ramekins or ovenproof tea cups and coat with grated parmesan.
2 Cook the spinach in a little butter and extra-virgin olive oil over a medium heat for 2–3 minutes. When wilted, spoon into a colander and press out any liquid. Finely chop, then mix in a bowl with the cream, a good grating of nutmeg, salt and freshly ground black pepper. Mix in the haddock.

Venison & juniper stew

Dust a chopping board with 2 tablespoons of flour and a good pinch of salt and pepper, and toss your chunks of meat through this mixture until well coated. Heat a large pan on a high heat, add a few lugs of olive oil and fry your meat for 3 minutes to brown it. Add your chopped onions, carrots, celery, crushed juniper berries, rosemary and the knob of butter. Add a few tablespoons of water, give everything a good stir, then pop the lid on the pan and let everything steam for 4 to 5 minutes so the flavours really mingle together.

Take the lid off so your meat and veg start to fry, and stir every so often for 5 to 10 minutes. Chop your parsley stalks finely, and once the onions start to caramelize, add them to the pan with your remaining 2 tablespoons of flour and your crumbled stock cubes. Stir, and pour in enough water to cover the mixture by a couple of inches. Put the parsley leaves aside for later.

A rather pleasing carrot cake with lime mascarpone icing

This carrot cake is an exceedingly good cake made all the more pleasing by the twist of lime mascarpone icing. It’s delicious, it works and it’s better than any other carrot cake I’ve tried. I would normally bake this in a square or round cake tin, but for the picture I used a lovely old loaf tin and it came out looking gorgeous.

Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF/gas 4. Grease and line a 22cm square cake tin or a round equivalent with greaseproof paper. Beat the butter and sugar together by hand or in a food processor until pale and fluffy. Beat in the egg yolks one by one, and add the orange zest and juice. Stir in the sifted flour and baking powder, and add the ground almonds, walnuts, spices and grated carrot and mix together well.

Sizzling beef with scallions and black bean sauce (usa version - imperial)

This works best with rice that has completely chilled down or, better yet, has been made earlier and kept in the refrigerator. But if you can’t prepare rice for this dish in advance, you can still cook it and pop into the refrigerator while you’re cooking the rest.

To prepare your stir-fry

Bring a pan of salted water to a boil, add the rice and cook according to the package instructions. Drain the rice in a strainer, run it under a cold tap to cool, then allow to dry out in the fridge. Trim any excess fat from your steak and slice the meat into finger-sized strips. Peel and finely slice the ginger and garlic
Finely slice the chile. Cut the ends off your scallions and finely slice. Pick the cilantro leaves and put to one side, and finely chop the cilantro stalks. Get yourself a big bowl and put in the ginger, garlic, chile, scallions, cilantro stalks, and steak strips. Add the sesame oil and mix everything together.

Beautiful smoky barbecued shellfish

You can use all sorts of shellfish for this: razors, clams, mussels and queen scallops. Buy only tightly closed shellfish so you know they’re still alive and fresh. If you’ve got bay, rosemary, thyme or, best of all, myrtle in your garden, whack branches on the embers to smoke underneath your shellfish. If your bars are wide apart, sit your shellfish on a baking rack so they don’t fall through.

To make your dressing, add the garlic and lemon zest and juice to a large bowl. Pour in 3 times the amount of extra virgin olive oil and add the finely chopped parsley stalks. Mix together.

Barbecued langoustines with aioli

Start by making the aïoli. Smash the garlic and salt together in a pestle and mortar. Whisk together the egg yolk and mustard in a bowl, then start adding the olive oils, bit by bit. Once you’ve blended in 150ml, add the rest in larger amounts. Finally add the smashed garlic, then lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste.

Spaghetti vongole

• 250g dried spaghetti or linguini
• 1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
• 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
• small bunch of parsley, chopped
• 200g fresh clams, washed
• Olive oil
• 150ml white wine
• 2 large plum tomatoes, diced
• 1 lemon

1 Cook your pasta in boiling salted water according to packet instructions, until al dente, then drain.

Stuffed fruit crumble

• 3 cardamom pods, seeds removed
• 75g caster sugar
• 70g desiccated coconut
• 1/2 vanilla pod, split, seeds scraped
• 1 egg white
• Zest of 1 orange, juice of half
• 4 large plums (or any soft stone fruit), halved and stoned
• Vanilla ice-cream, to serve

1 Preheat the oven to 180C/gas 4. Place the cardamom seeds in a mortar and grind to a powder. Pour into a bowl and mix well with the sugar, coconut, vanilla seeds, egg white, orange zest and juice.