Digital Packs

Digital Packs Banner Digital Packs Banner


30-Minute Cook: This week, a salmon and miso soup and fast lasagne from the new Crumbs Family Cookbook

Exhausted by dinner-time but still want a healthy meal? Our blogger, Carole Beck, is sharing her favourite healthy 30-minute recipes every fortnight. This week: two meals in minutes from the new The CRUMBS Family Cookbook 

Nowadays, I’m always on the look-out for new recipes that offer time-saving tricks in the kitchen, and so I was rubbing my hands in glee when I stumbled across new book The CRUMBS Family Cookbook – 150 really quick and very easy recipes. Written by Claire and Lucy McDonald, the foodies behind The Crumbs Sisters blog – their motto is ‘saving your sanity, one meal at a time’ – it comes with a range of ideas for clever cheats, like buying bags of finely chopped frozen carrot, celery and onion to save chopping time.

What I particularly like about their recipes is that there are no long-winded ingredients lists, so it means that most of the meals can be squeezed in to those post-work tired moments without too much fuss, or hectic weekends.

Their cookbook is written with parents in mind, but I reckon you don’t need hungry children to appreciate the 150 recipes in this book. There are plenty of grown-up meals to be found in here too.  Here are some of the ones that caught my eye.


I tried this because I wanted a) a really fast and easy way to get your oily fish fix, and b) I do love a miso soup.

I was really impressed by the speed of this dish and I can see how it could be ready in 10 minutes. However, I was a bit slow because I faffed around rather longer than expected getting the right ratio of miso. (I was a bit wary after an unfortunate experience recently in which I was a bit too heavy-handed.)

I liked this soup – a tasty and healthy supper and a great way to tuck into both oily fish and pulses in one sitting. If you fancy a variation, or you have a little more time, spice it up by stir-frying some chilli, garlic and ginger separately and adding to the soup.

Crumbs Family Cookbook salmon and miso soup

Serves 2

Time: 10 minutes

Small bunch of spring onions/ scallions
2 salmon fillets
100g (3½oz dried noodles)
handful of edamame beans
miso paste or powder
400ml (1¾ cups) hot water


Boil a kettle full of water. Finely chop the spring onions/ scallions.

Put a non-stick frying or griddle pan on the heat. Once hot, put the salmon fillets on it, skin-side down; you don’t need any oil.

Let them cook without prodding or poking.  You’ll see the dark pink flesh of the salmon get lighter. Once the flesh near the middle has cooked, using a fish slice, turn the fillet over. Let it cook for a little bit longer, 2 to 3 minutes, ideally keeping the inside of the fillet a little bit darker than the outside.

Use the boiling water in the kettle to fill a saucepan and cook the noodles according to the packet instructions. Throw the edamame beans in at the end to cook for a couple of minutes.

Stir miso powder or paste into 400ml (1¾ cups) hot water. The amount of miso you use is up to you, have a taste and see how strong you want it – check the information on the packet for guidance.

Put the chopped spring onions into the miso to warm them through.

Strain the noodles and edamame beans, and divide them between two bowls. Place the salmon on top of the noodles and pour the miso broth over the top.


I was so intrigued by this recipe that I just had to make it. Lasagne takes such an age to prepare, and involves blithering around with so many different pots that I never quite get round to it, which is such a shame. So I love the idea of a lasagne that’s potentially ready in 30 minutes. One of the crafty shortcuts is the lack of white sauce (it’s been swapped for crème fraîche).

While cooking it, I fell in love with the mixture of pork mince, fennel and crème fraîche. I kept sneaking spoonfuls- a fab combination of flavours. Overall, it was a great meal for a filling week night – perfect for a post-gym carb craving.

Fabulously fast lasagne

Serves 4

Time: 10 minutes prep, plus 20 to 30 minutes in the oven

Tomato sauce

1 x 400g (14oz) tin of chopped tomatoes
1 tsp sugar
1 tbsp tomato purée/ paste
1 small courgette grated

Pork ragu

A splash of olive oil
450g (1lb) minced/ ground pork or sausage meat
1 carrot, grated
2 tsp fennel seeds
½ tsp dried chilli seeds, optional
2 garlic cloves, crushed
salt and pepper
200ml (scant 1 cup) crème fraiche
4 sheets of dried lasagne
125g (4oz) mozzarella cheese

Preheat the oven to 190°C/ 375°F/ gas mark 5.

First, make the sauce. In a bowl or jug, empty the tin of tomatoes. Add the sugar, tomato purée/ paste and grated courgette. Stir.

Splosh a tablespoon of olive oil into a medium-sized saucepan. Place on the hob/stove-top and heat. Add the pork and stir. Let it cook for a couple of minutes. Once it has some colour, add the carrot and fennel seeds, chilli flakes, garlic, salt, pepper and crème fraiche. Bring to the boil and let it simmer for a couple of minutes.

In a 2-litre ovenproof dish, put a third of the tomato sauce. Then put half the pork mix over the top. Lay a sheet of lasagne over the top. Shred the mozzarella and layer it over the top of the lasagne.

Place the next third of the tomato sauce over the cheese, then the rest of the pork mix, a layer of lasagne, the final third of the tomato sauce and a thin layer of mozzarella.

Place in the oven for 20 to 30 minutes. Remove when the top is bubbling and golden.

The recipes have been reproduced with permission from the authors. (The pictures are my own.)

IW CB847_CRUMBS_JCKT_UK_02 22mm v2_Layout 1The CRUMBS Family Cookbook – 150 really quick and very easy recipes photography by Stuart West, published by CICO Books rrp: £16.99, available from all good bookshops and online retailers



Read more from The 30-Minute Cook:

Dinner salads
3 speedy pressure cooker suppers
5-minute meals
Super salmon

Carole BeckCarole is a health, parenting and food journalist, and has three children, aged eight, six and three. She lives in London, and writes a blog at Healthier Mummy about trying to lead a healthier family life. Follow her at @healthiermummy.  

Like this article? Sign up to our newsletter to get more articles like this delivered straight to your inbox.

More Healthista Content