watching the day break with Oscar

This morning has started early. Well, early for me anyway. It's not often that I can say I was up at 5.30am (well not unless I had stayed up all night, and those nights are firmly in my past). So it was with some surprise that I found myself in the kitchen at dawn, feeling wide awake.

steamed fish with chilli and lime sauce

A Thai-influenced meal that is healthy, low-fat, low-calorie, full of fresh flavours and very tasty. What's not to like?

I have suggested using red snapper or pollock but you could also use hake, sea bass, monkfish or even haddock or cod. As fish stocks decline, this is a great opportunity to take advantage of the wide variety of fish caught off British shores. (Just make sure it's all sustainably fished and caught. It doesn't taste any better, but it's good for the seas and probably good for the soul too).

grilled halloumi and courgette sandwiches

Just writing this up is making me hungry . . . the halloumi, courgettes and grilled sweet onions really compliment each other very well and are a perfect summery combination.

couscous salad with roast lamb, chickpeas and feta

A fresh tasting summer salad and a perfect way to use up leftover roast lamb (not that there is ever much left over in my house). But should you find some on your hands and want an interesting way of using it up, this is a quick, easy and, more importantly, a very tasty solution.

sticky maple spareribs

The origin of the expression "spare ribs" is not definitive. It is clearly not because they are actually "spare". (I'm sure the unfortunate pig or cattle would argue that they had none to spare!) It is most likely that thee word 'sparerib' is an English interpretation of a German butchers' term 'ribbesper', pork ribs roasted on a spear. Although "spare" might also refer to the fact that they are not usally very fatty, nor very meaty.