Their mission? To create the world’s finest ready meals.
“we wanted to create a unique office lunch experience and at the same time cut back on the use of plastics. We designed special wooden boxes that are custom made to perfectly contain and seal our food while allowing us to use them time and time again”
Benn’s Grilled Baby Chicken
Grilled baby chicken is Head Chef Benn Hodges’ signature dish and is inspired by Japanese fusion barbeque techniques.
Time: 45 minutes (plus 4-24 hours for marinating)
- 1 x medium organic chicken spatchcocked and scored across the meat
- 4 x whole aubergines
- Fresh coriander, spring onion and peppery watercress to garnish.
- Optional: bonito flakes, Japanese pepper (shichimi pepper) or chilli flakes.
For the marinade
- 5 garlic cloves, peeled
- 30g ginger, peeled and sliced across the grain
- 75ml soy sauce
- 4 tbsp miso paste
- 2 tbsp runny honey
- 200g vegetable oil
- 1 large fresh red chilli
- ½ bunch spring onions (add this last, and pulse through to leave some green color in the sauce)
To make the marinade
- Set the oil and spring onions to one side. Place everything else in a food processor and blitz until smooth.
- Slowly add the oil until emulsified, then add the spring onions and give it one short blitz so you have some flecks of green colour in the sauce.
Top tip: any leftover sauce can be kept it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to one month.
To make the chicken
- Preheat the oven to 190C.
- Spatchcock the baby chicken and remove the spine
- Apply approximately half the marinade to the chicken, cover and leave in the fridge overnight, or for at least 4 hours.
- Using a hot griddle pan, flash fry the chicken for up to five minutes on each side, making sure there are deep char marks on the skin.
- Cut the aubergines into 3cm cubes. Toss with olive oil, salt and pepper and set aside.
- Place the chicken on an oven tray and roast at 190C for 10 minutes (35 minutes in total).
- After 10 minutes, place the aubergine on a separate roasting tray and put in the oven alongside the chicken.
- After another 15 minutes, remove the chicken from the oven and pour an extra 4 tbsp of sauce over the top – this will add a sticky glaze to the chicken. Return to the oven and cook for the final 10 minutes.
- Put chicken on a large wooden board and cut into segments. Garnish with lemons, coriander, spring onions, fresh chilli and bonito flakes.
- Split the aubergine and watercress garnish into two separate serving dishes.
- Put the extra marinade into a small bowl so guests can enjoy the delicious sauce.
Chef Edo Bolognese
This is the bolognese recipe Edo’s grandmother taught him back in Sardinia. She always told him it’s of paramount importance that you use the freshest ingredients in order to get the best taste.
Time: 2 hours
- 300g beef mince
- 1 x carrot
- 2 x celery sticks
- 2 x white onions
- 2 x garlic cloves
- Handful of parsley
- 1 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tbsp of tomato paste
- 300g tomato passata
- Half a glass of chianti wine
- 4 cups of water
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Brown the mince in a large pot then remove from the pan and set aside.
- Finely dice the carrots, celery and onion. Add a little oil to the same pan, then fry the vegetables for 3 minutes.
- Add the parsley & garlic to the pot and cook until lightly browned.
- Add the mince back in with the vegetables, loosen with the red wine, then reduce until it’s thickened slightly (soup consistency).
- Add the tomato paste, passata and water, then bring to boil. Simmer for 1hr 30min (the longer the better) until it reaches the desired consistency.
- Just before serving, add salt and pepper to taste.
Top tip: serve with pappardelle pasta and a full bodied glass of red wine for the ultimate Italian experience
Sweet and Spicy Cauliflower Steak
This is a delicious addition to any summer BBQ. The sweet and spicy honey glaze pairs perfectly with the charred, smokey flavour of the cauliflower.
Time: 20 minutes
- 2cm thick section of a whole cauliflower
- 1 tsp chilli powder
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- Drizzle olive oil on both sides of the cauliflower steak.
- Drizzle honey on both sides of the cauliflower steak.
- Sprinkle chilli powder, turmeric and cumin seeds on both sides of cauliflower steak.
- Grill on the BBQ turning every 1-2 minutes until cooked through (or alternatively fry in a pan).
Fancy one of the EatFirst meals for dinner? Order here for same day delivery in central London!
EatFirst have Head Chef Benn Hodges will be judging at the HBC Bake Off on 17th August.