Another tuna lunchbox


No beetroot today.

This one consists of spicy tuna salad (omit the red kidney beans; add some black olives – enough for two servings), carrot sticks (they also serve as a barrier between the two salads), and little gem lettuce, cherry tomatoes, cucumber and fresh coriander salad).


Spicy lentil soup


Served here with croutons and fresh coriander.

This quantity will feed at least four people and with hunks of wholemeal bread makes a excellent supper:

  • 2 tbs cooking oil
  • 1 large onion (sliced)
  • 1 medium carrot (sliced)
  • 1 large celery stick (sliced)
  • 1 clove of garlic (sliced/roughly chopped)
  • a good pinch of chilli flakes (more if you like it hot)
  • a piece of fresh ginger (about 2cm square – chopped)
  • a good pinch of mixed herbs (or oregano or something similar)
  • 1 tsp of turmeric
  • 400g tin of chopped tomatoes (plus twice as much water)
  • 1 tsp vegetable stock powder (or stock cube equivalent)
  • 150g orange split lentils (washed under the cold tap in a sieve)
  • 2 tbs double cream
  • squeeze of lemon juice
  • freshly ground black pepper

Heat the cooking oil in a large saucepan. Add the onion, carrot, celery, garlic, chilli, ginger, herbs and turmeric. Mix the ingredients well, turn down the heat and stir frequently over a lowish heat for about five minutes.

Add the chopped tomatoes, the water, the stock powder and the lentils. Stir well, bring to the boil and simmer for about thirty minutes.

Blend the soup – in a liquidiser, food processor, or use a hand blender (my preference because it is so much easier to clean than a liquidiser or food processor) in the saucepan.

Stir in the cream and heat the soup until it just starts to boil. Add  the lemon juice and pepper to taste. At this point the soup is still very thick. You can add some cold water which will reduce the overall temperature so that it can be eaten immediately (if you are freezing it, it saves space).

Spicy tuna lunch box


This will provide two of the portions shown in the illustration:

  • 2 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp Greek yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon harissa paste (or use chilli sauce instead)
  • squeeze of lemon juice
  • 1 standard can of tuna chunks (drained)
  • 1/2 a standard can of red kidney beans (you can freeze the rest, or store in the fridge for use in the next few days)
  • 1 smallish green pepper (roughly chopped)
  • 2 spring onions finely sliced
  • black pepper to taste

Mix together the mayonnaise, yogurt, harissa and lemon juice. Give it a good beating with a tablespoon (it should thicken and look like mayonnaise). [You could up the proportion of yogurt and reduce the amount of mayonnaise, but unless the mixture is consumed the same day it will become watery as the yogurt separates from the mayonnaise.]

Add the tuna chunks and mash in with a fork.

Add the beans (drained), the green pepper and the spring onions.

Sprinkle with black pepper to taste.

The  illustration shows a 750ml square ‘Lock & Lock‘ plastic container. Other items are small tomatoes and carrots sticks (with an oil and vinegar dressing), and sliced beetroot with vinegar and spring onions.