Skip to content
Open menu Close menu

Feed your appetite for cooking with Penguin’s expert authors

penguin logo

Cook from the Book: From the Veg Patch

by Morgan Hayden-Kent

published on 18 June 2021

We’ve been looking forward to the release of From the Veg Patch since way back in January, so naturally we wasted no time getting stuck in as soon as our copies arrived. Author Kathy Slack has been contributing regularly to The Happy Foodie all year, dispensing tips on all things veg patch-related, and her debut book is just as informative and delightful as her monthly columns. Every recipe puts a hero vegetable centre stage, building a dish around its distinctive flavours and textures, from pumpkin tikka masala to crispy courgette and lime fritters. This book will be by your side from the depths of winter through to the heights of summer, offering a plethora of recipes to celebrate each season’s crop. To road test some of the recipes, we gathered a team of eager volunteers and got cooking. Scroll on to see how we fared.

Pea & Paneer Curry | Kathy Slack

Who: Alice King – Publicity Manager, Ebury Publishing

What I made: Pea & Paneer Curry

What I thought: This was a perfect weeknight dish. I love a dish that doesn’t take too much chopping and can be left to simmer away while you get on with other things and this was exactly that. The paneer kept its bite and was golden and delicious, while the sauce was really thick and flavoursome. Definitely one I’ll make again, and there is even an option for overnight maturing which I’ll try next time!

Beetroot Tahini and Almond Brownies | Easy Baking

Who: Emily Brickell – Editor, Ebury Publishing

What I made: Beetroot, Tahini and Almond Brownies

What I thought: A really simple recipe that came together very quickly. I roasted the beetroots the night before so that I didn’t have to wait for them to cool. SO delicious and chocolatey, without being too rich. This is going to become one of my go-to bakes! And one of my five-a-day (maybe).

Kale, Sesame and Soy Fried Rice | Easy Midweek Meal

Who: Samuel Heaton – Editorial Assistant, Ebury Publishing

What I made: Kale, Sesame and Soy Fried Rice

What I thought: One skill that I can never seem to nail is cooking the right amount of rice. Whenever I make a curry or a stir fry, I always seem to end up with mountains of excess rice which sadly often goes into the bin. This comforting and nutritious meal is easy to prepare and will prevent me from wasting food in the future. The mix of kale, spring onions and ginger is delicious and proves that you don’t need loads of ingredients or time to create something special.

Leek and Prawn Pie | Easy Midweek Meal

Who: Abby Watson – Marketing Manager, Ebury Publishing

What I made: Leek and Prawn Pie with Herby Topping

What I thought: This was an incredibly easy recipe to make, ideal when you want something quick and delicious after work that you can throw together with ease. It’s an unassuming dish packed full of flavour, and you don’t miss the mash you would normally expect on a fish pie – the herby topping is so light and really complimented the filling. I served it alongside peas and broccoli but it would be great with any kind of vegetable. I just wish my food photography was as good as Kathy’s!


You might also like

View all


Melissa Hemsley’s Feel Good summer menu for friends

Melissa Hemsley shares a selection of make-ahead summery dishes from her book Feel Good, from salads and sides to a 3-ingredient dessert.


Cook from the book: Feel Good by Melissa Hemsley

The Happy Foodie team has been testing out recipes from Feel Good, the brand-new cookbook from Melissa Hemsley.


Easy family favourites with Dominique Woolf: Singapore-style Chilli Tofu

Winner of The Great Cookbook Challenge, Dominique Woolf, shares a quick and easy family-friendly recipe for Singapore-style Chilli Tofu.


Subscribe to The Happy Foodie email newsletter

Get our latest recipes, features, book news and ebook deals straight to your inbox every week