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Tag Archives: thyme
  • Posted on January 9, 2015

    Recipe for the Weekend

    We’re slowly drifting further into January; work feels like a familiar routine again, relaxed afternoons filled with books and chocolate are now a distant memory, and as always, a few of those healthy eating resolutions are starting to wear a bit thin! If you’re struggling to stick to your lettuce leaf lunch or breakfast in a bottle then we’ve got a deliciously healthy recipe for you today that will keep you on track, because here at RPS and CICO Books Towers, we believe that healthy eating should still mean tasty eating!

    Taken from the flavour-filled new book, Out of the Pod, this recipe will make you reconsider the humble salad (and lovely lentils!) and will have you reaching for the herbs to freshen up your dull diet dishes. We hope you enjoy it and good luck with your resolutions!

    salad of puy lentils with roasted beetroot

    The habit of serving lentils with beet(root) goes back to Roman times. Writing in 2nd-century Rome, the physician and philosopher Galen recommended this health-giving combination in his treatise On the Power of Foods, dressing the salad with a sweet and salty fish sauce. If a fishy taste appeals, add some fish sauce to the dressing instead of salt. Serve the salad on its own, or strewn with crumbled salty cheese, such as feta, or slices of grilled halloumi cheese.

    500 g/1 lb. beet(root), peeled and cut into wedges

    3 tablespoons olive oil

    3 fresh or dried bay leaves

    1 sprig of fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon dried thyme

    200 g/1 cup dried Puy or French green lentils, rinsed and drained

    2 garlic cloves, peeled but left whole

    3 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

    2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint

    salt and ground black pepper

    For the dressing:

    1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

    1 tablespoon maple syrup

    2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

    2 tablespoons olive oil

    salt and ground black pepper

    Serves 4–6


    Preheat the oven to 180oC (350oF) Gas 4.

    Place the beet(root) in a small roasting pan, and toss in 2 tablespoons of the olive oil together with 3 tablespoons of water, 2 of the bay leaves and the thyme. Season with salt and pepper, cover with aluminium foil and roast in the preheated oven until they are soft – about 1 hour.

    Meanwhile, boil the lentils in a saucepan of water, together with the whole garlic cloves and the remaining bay leaf and olive oil, for about 30 minutes, or until thoroughly cooked.

    Whisk the ingredients for the dressing together.

    Drain the lentils and stir in all but 1 tablespoon of the dressing and the chopped fresh herbs. Arrange the chunks of cooked beet(root) over, drizzle with the remaining dressing and serve at room temperature.


    Out of the Pod by Vicky Jones is available here.

    Have a lovely weekend everyone and happy healthy eating!

    This post was posted in Featured, Featured, Recipes, Recipes, UK, US, What's new, What's new and was tagged with lentils, olive oil, beetroot, parsley, savoury, thyme, recipe for the weekend, vegetarian, 2014, balsamic, healthy, Out of the Pod

  • Posted on May 28, 2013

    A simple recipe for French red onion soup from 'A Life Less Ordinary'

    We know, we know... it's almost June and we're posting recipes for soup! But the forecast for the week suggests you might want to make this at home...

    Anyway, here's Alex Legendre on her recipe for French red onion soup which is taken from A Life Less Ordinary - Interiors and Inspirations which Alex co-wrote with Zoe Ellison.

    "I think this is all the comfort food you can get in one bowl. It has been our family favorite for as long as I can remember—my husband and I both ate it as children, and it gets passed on from one generation to another, with each new person adding their own
    personality. What’s so simple about this dish is the ingredients—you don’t really need anything you wouldn’t already have in your kitchen store.

    The soup has become a regular on the menu at the café, served just the way I like it with my dad’s recipe for welsh rarebit used for the cheesy croutons—a delicious combination with the rich dark soup.

    6–8 large red onions, finely sliced
    a pinch of fresh thyme
    7 tablespoons (100g) organic salted butter
    a splash of mild olive oil
    half a teaspoon of sugar
    2 tablespoons flour
    3 cups (850ml) homemade or good-quality
    bought beef stock
    a generous glass of wine that you would drink
    (not an old, half drunk, dusty bottle)
    a nip of brandy
    a baguette, some delicious Gruyère cheese, mustard
    powder, and an egg yolk for the croutons

    Soften the onions in a large shallow pan with the thyme, half the butter, and a splash of oil.
    Stir continuously to make sure the onions don’t stick to the base of the pan. When they have browned and taken on a silky, rich consistency, add the sugar and season. Stir in the flour and keep it moving while it cooks for a few minutes. Now add your wine and stock, and simmer for 30 minutes.

    While the soup simmers, prepare the croutons. Slice the baguette and toast one side. Finely grate some Gruyère and mix with an egg yolk and a generous pinch of mustard powder. Spread the cheese mixture on the untoasted side of the baguette slices and
    broil/grill until golden.

    Add the brandy and remaining butter to the soup and you’re ready to serve."

    A Life Less Ordinary - Interiors and Inspirations by Zoe Ellison and Alex Legendre is out now

    This post was posted in News, News, UK, US, What's new and was tagged with 2013, olive oil, mustard, zoe ellison, soup, thyme, favourite, sugar

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