As we inch ever closer to the weekend, meal inspiration may be lacking. Here are some comforting midweek dinner ideas

yellow fruit on stainless steel tray

Image by Peter Schad via Unsplash

It is definitely getting that little bit chillier, and there’s nothing more Irish or more comforting than the humble vegetable! If you’re running out of dinner ideas, and need some inspiration, Mash Direct have a range of delicious meals to keep bellies full and homes warm. Whether you’re feeling like Taco Thursday or making a classic cottage pie, you’ll be sure to have empty plates by the end of the meal.

Paprika Chicken with Colcannon Mash

Hot and Spicy Chicken Paprika served with Mash Direct Colcannon Mash and butter | Mash Direct

Ingredients:
2 packets of Mash Direct Colcannon
4 chicken breasts – cut into bite-sized pieces
Salt
2 tbsp olive oil
Butter
1 onion
2-3 cloves of garlic
1 tbsp sweet paprika
1 tbsp flour
½ pint of chicken stock
3 tbsp chopped parsley
2 red peppers
4 large tomatoes
250ml sour cream

Method:
Heat a large pan and add a dash of oil. Rub the chicken in the salt, and place in the pan to brown. Remove and set aside once cooked through.

Using the same pan, add in some chopped onions and garlic and let it simmer for about five minutes. Then add the paprika along with the flour and stir until combined – taking care not to burn.

Add the stock and stir. Return the chicken pieces to the pan, adding a bit more stock if the mixture seems too dry.

Add half of the chopped parsley and bring to the boil. Add the chopped red pepper strips, reduce the heat and simmer for ten minutes.

Cook the Mash Direct Colcannon according to packet instructions and serve as a side dish to complete the meal.

Cottage Pie with Cheesy Mash Top

​​

Ingredients:
2 packets of Mash Direct Cheesy Mash
1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, finely diced
2 carrots, peeled and finely diced
1 celery stick, finely diced
1 clove of garlic, crushed
1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
1 pack (400g) lean steak/lamb mince
1 tbsp plain flour
1 tbsp tomato purée
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
450ml beef stock

Method:
Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 4-5, 180°C, 350°F.

In an ovenproof casserole dish on the hob, heat the oil and add the finely diced onion, carrots and celery. Cook over a low heat for ten minutes, until softened and lightly brown.

Add the crushed garlic and thyme, cooking until fragrant (about 1-2 minutes) before adding the mince. Turn up the heat to medium and cook, stirring periodically until the mince is browned all over and juices caramelise on the bottom of the casserole dish.

Stir in the flour, tomato puree and Worcestershire sauce to the mince for a minute or so to combine. Immediately add the chicken stock, bringing to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes until the sauce is reduced and thickened.

Leave the mixture to cool for a few minutes and prepare the Mash Direct Cheesy Mash as directed. Top the mince mixture with the mash and smooth to create an even layer using the back of a large metal spoon.

Transfer the dish to the preheated oven and cook for 30 minutes, until the mash is a bubbling golden brown.

 

Broccoli & Chicken Pasta Bake

Make... Mash Direct's Broccoli and Chicken Pasta Bake — WOMAN'S WAY

Ingredients:
1 packet of Mash Direct Broccoli with a Cheese Sauce
450g dried penne pasta (use gluten free if desired)
350g diced chicken pieces
2 tbsp olive oil
200g cream cheese with garlic and herbs
50g red pesto
100g mature cheddar cheese, grated
1 slice white bread, processed into crumbs (use gluten free if desired)

Method:
Preheat oven to 175°C, 350°F, Gas Mark 4.

Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil and add all the pasta. Return to the boil. Cook the pasta until ‘al dente’ for 7-10 minutes. Drain the pasta and set aside.

Meantime, heat the oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. Cook the chicken pieces until they are lightly browned and are cooked through to the middle.

Once the chicken is cooked, combine with the pasta in the pot.

Add the cream cheese, red pesto and Mash Direct Broccoli with a Cheese Sauce. Stir the ingredients gently so as not to break up the broccoli florets until well combined.

Pour the mixture into a deep casserole dish (roughly 30cm x 23cm). Top with grated cheese and the breadcrumbs.

Place in the oven for 20 minutes until golden and crisp on top.

BBQ Mexican Halloumi Tacos with Summer Salads

Ingredients:
Mash Direct Home Style Potato Salad
Mash Direct Home Style Coleslaw
Lime
Coriander

Rub:
2tsp smoked paprika
2tsp brown sugar
2tsp dried oregano
1tsp cumin seeds
1tsp chilli flakes
Zest one lime
Salt & pepper to taste

Toppings:
Block of Halloumi
Rapeseed Oil
Corn on the cob
Tortilla Wraps
Sour Cream
Red Onion
Avocado

Method:
Cut the Halloumi into slices. Drizzle with the rapeseed oil, then sprinkle with the rub.

Set up the grill for high heat.

Grill the corn over medium / high heat until tender and roasted.

Sear the Halloumi over high heat on both sides. Heat the tortilla wraps on the grill 15-20 seconds each side. Serve with the warm Halloumi.

In the toasted wraps garnished with avocado slices, sour cream, red onion, chilli slices, coriander, cut corn cornels, lime wedges and Mash Direct salads.

 

Baked Risotto with Carrot, Parsnip, Turnip, Pancetta and Sage

May be an image of bia agus Laistigh

Ingredients:
1 pack Mash Direct Carrot, Parsnip and Turnip
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 leek, washed and thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
350g Arborio rice
1 litre vegetable stock
100g Mozzarella, grated
Freshly milled salt and pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil
160g pancetta cubes
6 sage leaves, finely shredded
20g Parmesan, grated

Method:
Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large oven-proof dish over a medium heat and fry the leek for 5 minutes until soft. Add garlic and cook for a minute, then add the rice and vegetable stock and bring to the boil.

Cover with a lid and place in a hot oven to bake for 30 minutes or until the rice is tender.

Heat the Mash Direct Carrot, Parsnip and Turnip according to pack instructions.

Remove the risotto from the oven and stir in the warm Mash Direct Carrot, Parsnip and Turnip. Season well and stir in the grated Mozzarella.

Heat the remaining oil in a frying pan and fry the pancetta until crisp. Add the sage leaves and fry for 1 minute.

Spoon the risotto into warm serving bowls and top with crisp pancetta, sage leaves and Parmesan before serving.