Skip to content
Open menu Close menu

Feed your appetite for cooking with Penguin’s expert authors

penguin logo

Recipes to boost your mood

by Genevieve Halbert

published on 20 January 2020

If you’re finding yourself daydreaming about warm spring days and prosecco in the park, we hear you: we’re kind of over winter, too. But before you blow your savings on a spontaneous flight to Bali, check out our collection of fail-safe recipes to lift your mood. We know food doesn’t fix everything, but in our experience, a disastrous day can usually be redeemed by a bowl of something hot or a slice of something sweet. Take a look at this collection of our favourite mood-enhancing recipes, from a fresh and zingy salmon traybake to a truly decadent macaroni cheese.

Squash, Saffron and Grapefuit Soup

Nadiya Hussain’s Squash, Saffron and Grapefruit Soup

Infused with ginger, saffron, and mango powder, this brightly flavoured soup is guaranteed to re-energise you on a cold winter evening. It’s packed with Vitamin C thanks to the grapefruit, so it could help keep colds at bay, too.

From the book

All-in-One Steam-roasted Salmon & Broccoli with Lime, Ginger, Garlic & Chilli

All-in-One Steam-roasted Salmon & Broccoli with Lime, Ginger, Garlic & Chilli

This zingy, Thai-inspired traybake is a ray of sunshine in a dish. The clean, bright flavours of steamed salmon and broccoli are combined with a ginger, lime, and peanut sauce to create a midweek meal that will really wake up your palate. 

Jessie and Lennie Ware’s Chicken Soup with Matzo Balls

Jessie and Lennie Ware’s Chicken Soup with Matzo Balls

by Jessie Ware, Lennie Ware

There’s a reason why chicken soup is prescribed as a cure for everything from heartbreak to the common cold. This traditional Jewish version from Jessie and Lennie Ware is made with matzo balls for a nostalgic and cheering meal. 

Blood Orange and Olive Oil Cake with Almonds

Blood Orange and Olive Oil Cake with Almonds

by Alice Hart

Citrus fruits are winter’s bright side; blood oranges, clementines, grapefruits, and Seville oranges are all at their best during the darker months. Make the most of them with this moist blood orange, almond, and olive oil cake. 

Macaroni Cheese with Smoky Bacon

Macaroni Cheese with Smoky Bacon

If you’re in need of some serious comfort food, it really doesn’t get much better than mac and cheese. This American-style recipe from Rick Stein includes smoky bacon lardons and a breadcrumb and Parmesan crust – just the sight of it emerging from the oven with its crisp, golden top is enough to lift the spirits. For an equally delicious vegan mac and cheese, click here.

Mary Berry Sunshine Cake | Easy Bakes

Mary Berry’s Sunshine Cake

Mary Berry’s aptly-named “sunshine cake” is packed with banana, carrot, and courgette, and topped with cream cheese frosting and dried banana chips. With its bright, summery flavours, it’s guaranteed to put a smile on your face.

Jamie Oliver’s Cumberland Roast Chicken with Roast Potato, Parsnip, Leek and Sage Traybake, Pear and Watercress

Jamie Oliver’s Cumberland Roast Chicken with Roast Potato, Parsnip, Leek and Sage Traybake, Pear and Watercress

If you’re craving a comforting, nostalgic roast, this recipe from Jamie Oliver ticks all the boxes, with a juicy, Cumberland sausage-stuffed bird cooked on a bed of potatoes, leeks, parsnips, and sage.

Ainsley Harriott Sweet Potato Spinach & Peanut Stew | Vegan Midweek Meal

Ainsley Harriott’s Sweet Potato, Spinach and Peanut Stew

Heady with spices and Scotch bonnet chilli, Ainsley Harriot’s vegan sweet potato stew makes for an invigorating midweek meal. The inclusion of crunchy peanut butter means it’s filling and nutritious, too.

Nigella Lawson’s Mine-All-Mine Sweet and Salty Chocolate Cookies

Nigella Lawson’s Mine-All-Mine Sweet and Salty Chocolate Cookies

If all else fails, you really can’t go wrong with a freshly baked chocolate cookie. Nigella Lawson’s small batch, sweet-and-salty recipe makes just the right amount for one or two people.

Share

You might also like


View all

Features

9 Ottolenghi recipes to make you fall in love with aubergine

We’ve rounded up 9 of the best Ottolenghi recipes from across his cookbooks, from Middle Eastern-style dips to vegan aubergine dal.

Features

Cooking with za’atar: 6 Ottolenghi recipes to try now

Discover 6 of the best Ottolenghi recipes using Middle Eastern herb blend, za’atar, from braised eggs to mac ‘n’ cheese, salmon to aubergines.

Features

10 of our favourite 3-ingredient bakes from Fitwaffle’s Baking It Easy

Discover 10 of our favourite 3-ingredient bakes from Baking It Easy, the debut cookbook from TikTok baking sensation, Fitwaffle.

newsletter

Subscribe to The Happy Foodie email newsletter

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