A new take on Linda McCartney’s Home Cooking

Linda McCartney’s book “Home Cooking” was the very first cookbook I ever bought ‒ back in 1992. Twenty-seven years later, I have re-discovered this book in my bookshelf. But while most of the recipes are still great today, the pictures in the book and the layout do not do them justice any more. So I decided to cook and photograph as many recipes as possible from this book, and to include gluten-free and vegan versions wherever possible. Read more about my idea to start cooking Linda’s recipes. Have fun browsing Linda’s recipes below, search by tag or have a look at some of my own recipes. You can also browse my photos.

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Linda's recipes

Carrot and Turnip Puree

From: Linda McCartney’s Home Cooking, p. 134

This Carrot and Turnip Puree is very smooth and has a lovely buttery note. The carrots give it a nice colour and balance the taste well.
It worked well as a filling for TVP “chicken” wraps with coleslaw, but would be just as good as a side dish with some gravy and vegetables.

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Linda's recipes

Barbecue Sauce

From: Linda McCartney’s Home Cooking, p. 143

A Barbecue Sauce for marinating TVP burgers and sausages before grilling them over the barbecue.
I used this sauce for marinating some TVP “pulled chicken”, which I then fried in a pan- great taste!

The recipe gives you a large quantity of BBQ Sauce and as it is not cooked it will not keep well. Unless you are planning a big party, I would recommend only using one third or half of the ingredients to make a smaller batch.
We also found the sauce great to serve the TVP “chicken”- just drizzle over the TVP before eating.

Variations: As the tomato ketchup is quite sweet already, I only used 30g of sugar but found that this was still too much. Next time, I would add no extra sugar to the recipe. Depending on what you want to marinate, you can also reduce the amount of oil in the recipe to 3 tbsp.
For a smokey flavour, try adding 1/2 tsp of smoked paprika powder and use 1 tbsp of soy sauce instead of salt.

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Coleslaw and Sour Cream

From: Linda McCartney’s Home Cooking, p. 144

A classig Coleslaw recipe with carrot, mayo, and sour cream. We had this coleslaw today in a wrap with marinated TVP “pulled chicken” and Carrot and Turnip Puree– a great combination.
When reading the recipe, I had the feeling that there was far too much dressing. So I only made half of the suggested quantity, which was plenty. I also thought that the dressing was too rich. Therefore I only took 3 tsp instead of 6 tbsp mayonnaise (and found that the mayo was still quite dominant in the taste) and substituted the sour cream for 100g of plain (plant-based) yoghurt.

Vegan: I made a vegan version, using vegan mayo and plant-based yoghurt instead of sour cream.

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Linda's recipes

Turnip, Carrot and Split-Pea Soup

From: Linda McCartney’s Home Cooking, p. 58

A great winter soup! It uses only few ingredients but has a balanced taste. The recipe makes 4 big plates of soup- but we thought that there could have been more for the four of us. So I would suggest doubling the quantity when serving the soup as a main course for four hungry people.

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Linda's recipes

Coleslaw

From: Linda McCartney’s Home Cooking, p. 73

A great basic Coleslaw recipe using cabbage and carrots.

Variations: I prefer reducing the amount of lemon juice and using some white wine vinegar instead. When making this, I found that half the amount of dressing is still plenty for the Coleslaw.
For an interesting twist, try adding 1 tsp nigella seeds.

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Cauliflower Gratin

From: Linda McCartney’s Home Cooking, p. 91

A quick, easy and delicious Cauliflower Gratin! Mixing the steamed cauliflower with fried onion and other ingredients and and then putting it under the grill works wonders and makes cauliflower a positive surprise. My daughter loved this and had more cauliflower than she would have if it had just been steamed and served as a side.

Vegan: I tried a vegan version (remember, it is veganuary!), substituting the parmesan for my vegan “parmesan”- delicious.

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Ghivetch Casserole

From Linda McCartney’s Home Cooking, p. 100

The name of this recipe caught my eye, as did the great variety of vegetables used in this dish. The vegetables are sautèed and then stewed with a tomato sauce in a casserole dish.

The origin of this dish seems to be unclear and similar dishes are known in many countries. Ghivetch is mostly ascribed as a Bulgarian recipe and sometimes meat or yoghurt is added to the casserole.

Linda’s Ghivetch Casserole is very colourful as it contains such a variety of vegetables. I served it with pasta, which was a good combination.

Variations: Despite all the different veg, I think the Casserole needs more seasoning to bring out the flavour a bit better. I would suggest adding some paprika powder and a little chilli. I would also omit the green peas as they turn hard when cooked for too long.
Leftovers can be reheated and taste at least as good as straight from the oven.

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Pancake Mix

From: Linda McCartney’s Home Cooking, p. 148

Here, Linda McCartney presents another recipe everyone should have . It is a simple pancake mix which gives you very thin and delicious pancakes- very similar to french crepes.

Vegan: As it is veganuary and my aim was to cook vegan recipes only, I substituted the egg for 50g of pureed silken tofu. This worked really well and tasted just like a pancake should taste. Using plant-based milk instead of cow’s milk made the pancakes vegan.

Gluten-Free: I also tried a gluten-free version of this recipe, which was not very sucessful. In this recipe, the dough needs to stand for some time for the dough to thicken. This only works with flour that contains gluten- the rice and tapioka flour blend I used did not change at all when soaking and the dough was far too runny.
To still adapt this recipe as gluten-free, you need to use more flour than specified in the recipe (I took a total of 175g) or try oat flour instead.

Variations: Pancakes are very versatile and we make them in “emergencies” when we really need some quick comfort food. As the recipe does not use any sugar, the pancakes can also be filled with savoury ingredients. We like filling them with salad, olives, and yoghurt dressing, and the children love vegetable sticks and tomato ketchup. As sweet fillings, a favourite is a mix of sugar and ground cinnamon, but you can also try all kinds of jam, banana and peanut butter or chocolate spread. There is no limit to imagination…

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Stuffed Peppers

From: Linda McCartney’s Home Cooking p. 126

This is a recipe for peppers, stuffed with rice, TVP mince and tomato sauce, and baked in the oven.

A few days ago, when discussing what to eat on the weekend, my husband mentioned that he would love to have some Stuffed Peppers- a dish he knows from meals at his grandfather’s. As with many dishes we both know from our families, there was of course a recipe for Stuffed Peppers in Linda’s cookbook. And one more reason to prepare Stuffed Peppers.
My husband prepared the peppers and they were just delicious. Definitely a recipe we will ask him to use again 🙂 .

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Garlic Dressing

From: Linda McCartney’s Home Cooking, p. 147

Another great basic recipe everybody should know. The garlic dressing has a well-balanced taste and is easy to make. I used a hand-held blender to blend all the ingredients (you don’t even have to crush the garlic when using a blender) and the consistency of the dressing was very creamy and smooth. Usually, I make up salad dressings as I go, but in this case it was worth sticking to the recipe to get the balance right. Or, as my brother-in-law would say “following a recipe gives you a better result” (a statement I normally disagree with as I tend to use whatever there is in the fridge or larder and create meals on the go).

Variations: You can add all different flavours to the dressing, such as fresh herbs, capers, chopped shallot, chopped olives or dried tomatoes or… Endless variations!