Alex Mackay

Alex is a cookery teacher and writer, with over 20 years of experience in food. Having won awards for his writing, run his own cookery school in Provence and directed at Raymond Blanc’s Cookery School, he’s a bit of a teaching maestro. So we feel very lucky to have him writing some of our recipes! What’s more, his Ready Steady Cook days mean he really does get what it takes to cook something uncompromisingly tasty in a rush. So his recipes are mightily practical, time efficient and brilliant for everyone.

Sun-dried Tomato and Rocket Giant Couscousotto

Sun-dried Tomato and Rocket Giant Couscousotto
  • Serves 4

  • 35 minutes

  • 3 pans

  • Proficient

Suitable for dairy-free, vegans and vegetarians

Intense flavour and creaminess of a risotto using our healthier wholewheat giant cousous

Sun-dried Tomato and Fennel Seed Focaccia

Sun-dried Tomato and Fennel Seed Focaccia
  • Serves 6

  • 60 minutes

  • 1 pan

  • Proficient

Suitable for dairy-free, vegans and vegetarians

This focaccia is a glorious loaf with tons of taste, the dough absorbs the flavours from the olive oil and sun-dried tomatoes, making the sum of its parts into an irresistible whole. The combination of crunchy, soft and crumbly makes the texture of as much of a treat as the taste

Quinoa Cottage Pie

Quinoa Cottage Pie
  • Serves 6

  • 60 minutes

  • 3 pans

  • Beginner

Suitable for dairy-free, gluten-free, vegans and vegetarians

A hearty filling dish for those dark cosy evenings in.

Quinoa Pancakes with Mango & Passion fruit syrup

Quinoa Pancakes with Mango & Passion fruit syrup
  • Serves 4

  • 30 minutes

  • 4 pans

  • Proficient

Suitable for vegetarians

A little twist on the classic – with a delicious fruity syrup that the whole family will be a fan of.

Quinoa Porridge with Orange and Dried Fruits

Quinoa Porridge with Orange and Dried Fruits
  • Serves 2

  • 20 minutes

  • 1 pan

  • Beginner

Suitable for dairy-free, gluten-free, vegans and vegetarians

A fresh citrus-y dairy free porridge with British Quinoa instead of oats.

Quinoa Salad with Mozzarella and Roasted Beetroot

Quinoa Salad with Mozzarella and Roasted Beetroot
  • Serves 2

  • 30 minutes

  • 3 pans

  • Beginner

Suitable for gluten-free and vegetarians

The whole salad can be prepared a day ahead. Just add the basil and mozzarella at the last minute.

Roast Turkey with Chestnut and Cranberry Stuffing

Roast Turkey with Chestnut and Cranberry Stuffing
  • Serves 8

  • 4 hours

  • 1 pan

  • Proficient

The dried cranberries add a special touch to my traditional chestnut stuffing and the gravy made with Marsala adds incredible richness and flavour. This recipe by Alex Mackay gives you lots of gravy; turkey tends to soak it up so always make enough for a second or third round.

Roasted Cod with Squash, Bacon & Chestnuts

Roasted Cod with Squash, Bacon & Chestnuts
  • Serves 2

  • 45 minutes

  • 2 pans

  • Beginner

Suitable for gluten-free

“This is a glorious combination of sweet, succulent and salty with the butter giving it a smooth finish and the lemon adding a sunny smile.”

Polenta Bread

Polenta Bread
  • Serves 8

  • 25 minutes

  • 3 pans

  • Beginner

Suitable for gluten-free and vegetarians

A gluten-free polenta bread – the perfect recipe for experimenting with your own flavours.

Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto

Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto
  • Serves 4

  • 20 minutes

  • 1 pan

  • Beginner

Suitable for dairy-free, gluten-free, vegans and vegetarians

A dip, a spread, a dressing or a sauce, the pesto is beyond delicious in dollops over cheese on toast!

Sausage, Chestnut and Cranberry Stuffing

Sausage, Chestnut and Cranberry Stuffing
  • Serves 8

  • 45 minutes

  • 2 pans

  • Beginner

Suitable for dairy-free

The dried cranberries add a special touch to this chestnut stuffing.

Mashed Sweet Potato with Chestnut Purée

Mashed Sweet Potato with Chestnut Purée
  • Serves 4

  • 10 Minutes

  • 1 pan

  • Beginner

Suitable for dairy-free, gluten-free, vegans and vegetarians

Sweet potato and chestnut puree – a winning luxuriously vegan take on mash that tastes great and caters for everyone!

Brussels Sprouts with Chestnuts and Pancetta

Brussels Sprouts with Chestnuts and Pancetta
  • Serves 4

  • 20 minutes

  • 3 pans

  • Beginner

Suitable for gluten-free

A quick and delicious dish to get all the family eating Brussels Sprouts.

Beluga Lentils and Mushroom Gnocchi Bake

Beluga Lentils and Mushroom Gnocchi Bake
  • Serves 6

  • 35 minutes

  • 4 pans

  • Proficient

Suitable for vegetarians

This delicious, vegetarian dinner is really easy to make, and a great dish for serving lots of people!

Ginger, Garlic and Soy Broth with Porcini Mushrooms and Beluga Lentils

Ginger, Garlic and Soy Broth with Porcini Mushrooms and Beluga Lentils
  • Serves 2

  • 30 Minutes

  • 1 pan

  • Beginner

Suitable for dairy-free, gluten-free, vegans and vegetarians

Refreshing and filling at the same time, this Japanese broth packs a punch of a flavour.

Spiced Pear and Chestnut Crumble

Spiced Pear and Chestnut Crumble
  • Serves 6

  • 1 hour

  • 1 pan

  • Beginner

This is a crumble inspired by mulled cider at Christmas to eat any time that it’s chilly.

Spiced Sardine Fillets with Moroccan Relish and Jewelled Quinoa

Spiced Sardine Fillets with Moroccan Relish and Jewelled Quinoa
  • Serves 2

  • 20 minutes

  • 3 pans

  • Proficient

Suitable for gluten-free

This blazing feast of a dish shouts out that summer’s coming!

Chestnut Purée, Onion, Cheese and Bacon Tart

Chestnut Purée, Onion, Cheese and Bacon Tart
  • Serves 4

  • 45 minutes

  • 2 pans

  • Beginner

This tart is ideal for any meal, can be served hot, warm or at room temperature, on its own or with a crisp green salad.

‘Huevos Rancheros’ – Spiced Eggs Poached in a Tomato, Beluga Lentil and Yellow Pepper Sauce

‘Huevos Rancheros’ – Spiced Eggs Poached in a Tomato, Beluga Lentil and Yellow Pepper Sauce
  • Serves 2

  • 30 minutes

  • 3 pans

  • Proficient

Suitable for vegetarians

This is a great dinner, breakfast, brunch or lunch!

Quick Chestnut Soup

Quick Chestnut Soup
  • Serves 2

  • 10 minutes

  • 1 pan

  • Beginner

Suitable for gluten-free and vegetarians

This can be an elegant soup, a rustic one or a mixture of the two.

Aromatic Spiced Chicken and Apricots with Giant Couscous

Aromatic Spiced Chicken and Apricots with Giant Couscous
  • Serves 4

  • 30 Minutes

  • 4 pans

  • Proficient

Suitable for dairy-free

This warmly spiced chicken dish has a yummy combination of Giant Couscous with paprika, chilli and ginger

Basil Pistou and Spring Vegetable Giant Couscousotto

Basil Pistou and Spring Vegetable Giant Couscousotto
  • Serves 4

  • 30 minutes

  • 2 pans

  • Proficient

Suitable for vegetarians

A simple couscous made the risotto way! With spring vegetables, binded with the fresh flavours an extravagant taste of pistou (the French pesto).

Freekeh Superfood Salad

Freekeh Superfood Salad
  • Serves 2

  • 10 Minutes

  • 1 pan

  • Beginner

Suitable for vegetarians

This is a great salad for kids, full of colour, crunch and bite

Dulce De Leche and Chestnut Hot Cross Buns

Dulce De Leche and Chestnut Hot Cross Buns
  • Serves 8

  • 30 Minutes

  • 4 pans

  • Expert

Suitable for vegetarians

This is a hot little classic crossed with a whole new twist, perfect for wow-ing at Easter!

Duck with Chorizo, Potato and Chestnuts

Duck with Chorizo, Potato and Chestnuts
  • Serves 4

  • 1 hour

  • 4 pans

  • Expert

This is a delicious, rich, hearty recipe for sharing around the dinner table in the depths of winter

Crisp Vegetable and Quinoa Coleslaw

Crisp Vegetable and Quinoa Coleslaw
  • Serves 2

  • 10 Minutes

  • 1 pan

  • Beginner

Suitable for dairy-free, gluten-free, vegans and vegetarians

This joyously colourful combination is fresh, feisty and full of goodness and can be transformed from a side dish into a light lunch

Chestnut Christmas Mincemeat

Chestnut Christmas Mincemeat
  • Serves 8

  • 1 hour

  • 1 pan

  • Proficient

A truly festive mincemeat inspired by some of the ingredients from the famous 13 Christmas desserts of Provence

Chocolate and Chestnut Christmas Pudding with Orange and Prune Syrup

Chocolate and Chestnut Christmas Pudding with Orange and Prune Syrup
  • Serves 8

  • 1 hour

  • 4 pans

  • Expert

Suitable for dairy-free, gluten-free and vegetarians

A beautifully steamed and rich festive dessert which makes a wonderful gluten free alternative to the traditional Christmas pud – but with the same mouth watering look and feel

Chestnut Purée Mont Blanc

Chestnut Purée Mont Blanc
  • Serves 6

  • 30 Minutes

  • 2 pans

  • Proficient

Suitable for vegetarians

A traditional, wintery, showstopper of a chestnut dessert

Chestnut Hummus

Chestnut Hummus
  • Serves 2

  • 10 Minutes

  • 1 pan

  • Beginner

Suitable for dairy-free, gluten-free, vegans and vegetarians

A deliciously simple dip with a luxuriously smooth texture that a chickpea could only dream of!

Chestnut Frangipane Mince Pies

Chestnut Frangipane Mince Pies
  • Serves 8

  • 60 Minutes

  • 3 pans

  • Proficient

Suitable for vegetarians

An original take on the humble mince pie recipe, with a variety of beautiful toppings to make them stand out from the crowd

Chestnut and Quinoa Energy Balls

Chestnut and Quinoa Energy Balls
  • Serves 6

  • 30 minutes

  • 1 pan

  • Beginner

Suitable for dairy-free, gluten-free, vegans and vegetarians

Powerfully flavoured, packed full of energy and delicately decorated, these chestnut and quinoa protein balls are the perfect healthy snack

Cheesy Puy Lentil and Squash Bake

Cheesy Puy Lentil and Squash Bake
  • Serves 4

  • 1 hour

  • 3 pans

  • Proficient

Suitable for gluten-free and vegetarians

A delicious vegetarian and gluten free take on a lasagne using crunchy almonds creamy squash and earthy lentils

Chestnut, Ginger and Blackberry Cheesecake

Chestnut, Ginger and Blackberry Cheesecake
  • Serves 8

  • 1 hour

  • 3 pans

  • Proficient

Suitable for vegetarians

A rich seasonal cheesecake combining chestnuts and blackberries with a smooth and lusciously light texture