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Want to show off? Here’s some great ways to add a little extra to your meals:

* Homemade Garlic Bread

Butter a couple of slices of bread and cut them in half. Sprinkle lightly with garlic granules, or powdered garlic. Then sprinkle with a pinch of herbs (either mixed, or one chosen to compliment your meal – check your recipe for ideas!). Place on a baking tray and pop into a hot oven for 3 minutes. If you’re cooking at a high temperature, they’ll need less time in the oven. Serve as a side dish.

* Raita

If you’re making Indian food, pop a few tablespoons of natural yoghurt into a mug and stir in half a teaspoon of dried mint. Makes a great dip for bhajis and samosas, or a side to cool down the heat for less spice tolerant guests. You can make this with soya yoghurt for vegan guests too.

* Chopped vegetables for popadoms

Put a few chunks of cucumber, half an onion and a fresh tomato cut into quarters into the blender with 2-4 stalks of fresh coriander. Whizz for a few seconds, place in a bowl and stir in a teaspoon of balsamic vinegar. Instant veg mix for popadoms.

* Apple Sauce

If you’re cooking pork for a roast and fancy having apple sauce with it, cut two peeled apples in half and remove the core and pips. Add the apples to the stock water to cook with the pork. When you are serving the meat, scoop them out with a slotted spoon and mash them together (with a dash of cider if you have any around) and serve as a side dish.

* Homemade stuffing

This is great for showing off when making any sort of roast dinner.

  • Grate 2-3 slices of bread (brown or white, it doesn’t matter) and stir in a tablespoon of your choice of herb (mixed herbs will do, but sage is the best for this), along with half a teaspoon of salt and a sprinkle of black pepper.
  • Chop an onion as finely as you can and stir it into a tablespoon of butter. This will need to be heated up, which can be done in the microwave (60 seconds on full power) or in a saucepan (stir on full heat for about 90 seconds).
  • Add the resultant mix to the breadcrumbs and stir in thoroughly.
  • Add an egg to the mixture and stir together.
  • Once the mix has cooled, place tablespoon sized lumps onto a baking tray and cook for approx 15 minutes, until the breadcrumbs are beginning to brown.

These can be served hot or left to cool. If you make a batch and have some left over, you can even pop them in a snappy bag and freeze them for future meals. Just make sure that they are heated through.

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