More Taste Less Waste

by Northern Life

More Taste & Less Waste is all about creating fabulous food whilst minimising food waste.

As well as tips on meal planning and storage, More Taste & Less Waste offers several recipes using one ingredient, ensuring your shopping doesn’t go to waste.

The following recipes use a beef brisket for three different meals, giving you variety without sacrificing the environment.



Serves 2 (with leftovers)

Prep time: 35 mins plus standing

Cook time: 4 hours

Pot-cooked beef brisket


Boned and rolled lean beef brisket 1.2kg (2lb 10oz)

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Olive oil 3 tbsp

Onion 1, peeled and chopped

Celery stick 1, trimmed and chopped

Carrots 175g (6oz), peeled and chopped

Fresh sage, a few sprigs

Red wine 300ml (½ pint)

Beef stock 900ml (1½ pints)

Chestnut mushrooms 175g (6oz), quartered

Cornflour 4 tsp

Worcestershire sauce 2 tsp (optional)

Buttery mashed potatoes or potato dauphinoise to serve


Season the beef well all over. Leave to stand at room temperature for 20 minutes. Preheat the oven to 170°C/150°C fan/Gas 3. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a flameproof casserole and brown the meat for about 10 minutes, turning to brown all over. Remove from the pan and set aside. Add the onion, celery and carrots and gently fry for 5 minutes, stirring, until lightly browned. Return the beef to the casserole, add the sage, wine and stock and bring to the boil. Cover with foil, put the lid on top and put in the oven for 3 hours, turning the beef halfway through.

Heat the remaining oil in a pan and stir-fry the mushrooms for 3–4 minutes until lightly browned. Stir into the casserole, cover and cook for a further 30 minutes until the beef is very tender. Lift the beef onto a carving board, cover loosely with foil and leave to stand for 20 minutes. Drain the vegetables, reserving the cooking juices, discard the sage, cover the vegetables and keep warm. Skim any fat from the cooking juices. Pour into a saucepan and bring to the boil. Boil rapidly for about 15 minutes until reduced by half. Blend the cornflour with the Worcestershire sauce and 2 teaspoons water (or 4 teaspoons water if not using sauce) and gradually blend into the reduced liquid. Bring back to the boil, stirring, and simmer for 1 minute until lightly thickened.

To serve, carve the meat into chunky pieces or pull apart with two forks. Serve with the vegetables, gravy and buttery mash or potato dauphinoise.


Use all beef stock or all red wine if preferred. Instead of fresh sage use 2 dry bay leaves. To freeze: slice leftover meat, cool, then wrap and freeze for up to 3 months. Cool leftover vegetables and gravy, pack into containers and freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost in the fridge overnight. Reheat together in a saucepan over a low heat; cook for 6–7 minutes until thoroughly hot.


Serves 2

Prep time: 15 mins

Cook time: 35 mins

Beef & chickpea ragu


Olive oil 2 tbsp

Red onion 1 small, peeled and chopped

Garlic 1 clove, peeled and crushed

Red pepper 1, deseeded and chopped

Ground cumin 1 tsp

Sweet smoked paprika 1 tsp

Bay leaf 1

Red wine 150ml (¼ pint)

Chopped tomatoes 227g can

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Cooked beef brisket 150g (5oz), shredded

Cooked or canned chickpeas 125g (4½oz)

Pitted black olives 40g (1½oz), chopped

Freshly cooked pasta, grated Parmesan cheese and chopped fresh parsley to serve


Heat the oil in a large saucepan and gently fry the onion, garlic, red pepper, spices and bay leaf for 5 minutes. Cover with a lid, reduce the heat to low and leave the vegetables to cook in their own juices for 15 minutes until soft.

Stir in the wine, tomatoes, salt and pepper, bring to the boil and simmer uncovered for 5 minutes to reduce slightly. Stir in the beef, chickpeas and olives, cover and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thickened and piping hot. Discard the bay leaf.

To serve, spoon the beef and chickpea sauce over freshly cooked pasta and sprinkle with Parmesan and parsley.


For a less rich version, replace the red wine with beef stock. Use chilli powder instead of smoked paprika for a spicier flavour. If you have leftover cooked chickpeas, heat them in boiling water then drain well and mash with a fork. Mix into freshly cooked crushed potato with some grated Cheddar or Parmesan cheese for a protein-rich mash to accompany ratatouille or roast Mediterranean style vegetables.


Serves 2

Prep time: 15 mins

Cook time: 35 mins

Chilli beef and chips


Olive oil 1 tbsp

Spring onions 1 bunch, trimmed and chopped

Garlic 1 clove, peeled and crushed

Dried chilli flakes to taste

Cherry tomatoes 150g (5oz), halved

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Cooked beef brisket 150g (5oz), shredded

Kidney beans in chilli sauce 205g can

Cooked sweetcorn 50g (2oz)

Lightly salted tortilla chips 90g (3½oz)

Cheddar cheese 50g (2oz), grated

Avocado, tomato and coriander salsa and crisp salad leaves to serve


Heat the oil in a saucepan and gently fry all but 2 tablespoons of the spring onions with the garlic and chilli for 2–3 minutes. Add the tomatoes, salt and pepper, cover, reduce the heat to low and leave the vegetables to cook in their own juices for 10 minutes until soft.

Stir in the beef, kidney beans in sauce, sweetcorn and about 75ml (3″ oz) water. Mix well, bring to the boil and simmer uncovered for 10 minutes until thoroughly heated.

Preheat the grill to medium–hot. Put half the tortilla chips in an ovenproof dish and spoon over half the sauce. Top with the remaining chips and sauce and sprinkle with the cheese. Place under the grill and cook for 4–5 minutes until the cheese is melted and bubbling. Serve immediately, sprinkled with the remaining spring onions, an avocado, tomato and coriander salsa and crisp salad leaves.


If you have leftover tortilla chips, crush them lightly and use as a topping for gratins, or grind finely and use them as a coating instead of – or mixed with – dry breadcrumbs. Serve leftover kidney beans on toast topped with grated Cheddar. Instead of the tortilla chips, layer with gnocchi.

More Taste & Less Waste

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