Marcus Rashford & Tom Kerridge's easy meals for cash-strapped families over Christmas

TV chef Tom Kerridge and footie ace Marcus Rashford have come up with recipes for cash-strapped families to dish up over Christmas.

Both their mums struggled financially when they were young. This month, 2.3million children went to bed hungry and the pair want to help parents during the festive season.

They have stepped up their Full Time Meals campaign to create easy recipes parents and children can cook together, and to highlight the availability of Healthy Start Vouchers to help families buy food.

Tom said: “I want to see people cooking together over Christmas.

“And if you are lucky enough not to have experienced hunger as a child, then please dig deep and support FareShare with whatever you can give.”

Here are four of their family favourites.

Mexican-style chicken

Tom says: A one-pan wonder with tons of different flavours, but hardly any ingredients!”

SERVES 4
Done in 1 hour

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YOU NEED:

  • 8 chicken drumsticks
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 onion
  • 1 red pepper
  • 2 tbsp fajita seasoning
  • 1 stock cube (chicken or vegetable)
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 1 large mug of basmati rice
  • 1 large mug of water

METHOD:

  1. Whack the oven on at 180C. Start by removing the skin from the drumsticks. Pull the skin down to the end of the bone and then, using a cloth to help you grip, pull the skin away completely.
  2. Heat the vegetable oil in a casserole dish (or any ovenproof dish with a lid) and, once hot, add the chicken drumsticks. Cook for 10-15 minutes in the oven until they’re nicely browned all over. Remove the drumsticks from the pan and put them on a plate to one side.
  3. Peel and roughly chop the onion, then cut up the pepper too. Add this to the same dish and cook for 4-5 minutes, stirring frequently, until softened and starting to brown. Add the fajita seasoning and crumble in the stock cube.
  4. Then add the tomato purée and give it a stir, cooking for another minute or two. Next, pour in the tin of chopped tomatoes, followed by the mug of rice.
  5. Fill up the same mug with water and add this to the dish, and add the chicken drumsticks back in. Bring this to a simmer, so it’s gently bubbling, and pop the lid on.
  6. Place this in the hot oven and cook for 30-35 minutes.
  7. Once cooked, take the dish out of the oven and let it stand for 5 minutes, allowing any remaining liquid to be absorbed.
  8. Then spoon on to plates and enjoy.

Spaghetti bolognese

Marcus says: An absolute family favourite that’ll please everyone. This is a handy recipe to have as you can use it to make a bunch of other dishes, like chilli con carne and lasagne.”

SERVES 6
Done in 30 minutes

YOU NEED:

  • 500g 5% fat beef mince
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 mug of frozen onions
  • 1 mug of frozen, sliced mixed peppers
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 1 mug of water
  • 2 tbsp gravy granules
  • 1 x 500g packet spaghetti
  • Grated parmesan, to serve
  • Pepper

METHOD:

  1. Heat a large, deep, non-stick frying pan over a high heat. Once hot, tip in the mince and break it up with a wooden spoon. Cook for around 10 minutes, until the mince is evenly browned.
  2. Peel and grate the carrot, then add this to the pan, along with the frozen onions and peppers.
  3. Turn the heat down to medium and cook for a few more minutes to soften, stirring often. Once the onions are soft, add the tomato purée and cook for 1-2 minutes. Pour in the chopped tomatoes along with the mug of water, gravy granules and a bit of pepper.
  4. Bring it to a gentle bubble and cook over a low-medium heat, stirring often, for around 20 minutes until the sauce has thickened.
  5. While the sauce is cooking, bring a large pan of water to the boil and add the pasta. Cook for 10-12 minutes, or according to the packet instructions.
  6. Once cooked, drain the pasta and serve it into bowls, then top with the bolognese sauce and a sprinkling of grated parmesan.

Caulifower & sweet potato curry

Marcus says: “Making a curry doesn’t need to be complicated – you only need a few ingredients to pack a punch!”

SERVES 4
Done in 45 minutes

YOU NEED:

  • 1 onion
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 large sweet potato
  • ½ cauliflower, plus the outer leaves
  • 1 tin of chickpeas
  • 2 tbsp curry powder
  • 1 vegetable stock cube
  • 1 can of chopped tomatoes
  • 2 mugs of boiling water
  • 3 blocks of frozen spinach

METHOD:

  1. Peel and roughly chop the onion. Heat the vegetable oil in a large, deep pan over a medium-high heat and, once hot, add the onion.
  2. Fry for 8-10 minutes, stirring frequently, until onion is softened and starting to brown.
  3. Next, peel and chop the sweet potato into bite-sized chunks and cut the cauliflower into florets (saving the leaves for later).
  4. Drain the chickpeas, then add these to the pan along with the chopped veg, curry powder, stock cube, chopped tomatoes and 2 mugs of boiling water. Stir it all together. Reduce the heat so that the curry is bubbling very gently at a simmer and cook for 20-25 minutes until the sweet potato is tender.
  5. Slice up the outer leaves of the cauliflower and add these to the pan along with the spinach.
  6. Give it a stir and cook for another 3 minutes with the lid on. Finish with a bit of pepper if needed, and serve straight away.

Fish pie jackets

Marcus says: “A mash-up of fish pie and jacket potatoes. This is a pocket-friendly and exciting way to eat fish that is super-easy but still looks impressive . . .  a piled-up-high fish pie.”

SERVES 4
Done in 2 hours

YOU NEED:

  • 2 large baking potatoes
  • 4 frozen white fish fillets
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 4-6 tbsp light mayonnaise
  • 1-2 tbsp American mustard
  • A pinch of pepper (cayenne, or whatever you have)
  • 1 mug of frozen peas
  • 8 tbsp grated cheddar
  • Salt and pepper

METHOD:

  1. Whack the oven on at 180C. Put the potatoes on to a baking tray and cook in the hot oven for 1 hour.
  2. When the hour is nearly up, lay a sheet of foil over a flat surface. Lay the frozen fish fillets on top and drizzle with vegetable oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper.
  3. Lay another sheet of foil the same size on top of the fish and scrunch up the edges to make a sealed parcel. After the potatoes have been cooking for 1 hour, add the foil fish parcel to the tray in the oven and cook this all for another 30 minutes. Remove the tray with the potatoes and fish parcels from the oven – but leave the oven on.
  4. Take the cooked fish fillets out of the foil and pop them in a bowl. Using a sharp knife, cut the potatoes in half and carefully spoon out the hot and fluffy insides from the skins, and add this to the bowl. Make sure to keep the potato skins intact.
  5. To the same bowl, add the mayonnaise, mustard, a pinch of cayenne (or other) pepper, and frozen peas. Give it all a good mix. Spoon the fish and potato mix into each of the potato skins (you will have 4) and grate the cheddar over each one.
  6. Put the filled jackets onto the baking tray and pop them back in the oven for 20 minutes until warmed through and the cheese has melted. Serve up and dig in.

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