5 Ingredients 10 Minutes

the minimalist lentil burger
Yes, it caught my attention too.

A meal in only 10 minutes made from only 5 ingredients.

I was rather intrigued to see what meals could be made in 10 minutes. I had a think about it and all I could think of was spaghetti with oilve oil, black pepper and parmesan, boiled egg on toast, beans on toast or an omelette. Maybe I'm not creative enough with quick meals. I usually consider a meal made in 30 minutes a quick meal.

quinoa and parsley salad with almonds
You aren't going to make any gourmet meals from this cookbook and you probably won't open a page and think, now what a great idea, I would never have thought of that, but that's kind of the point.

When you come home late from work and don't have a plan of what to cook, you can get stuck for ideas and resort to one of my rather uninspired options.

And that is the point of this book, to offer you ideas when you are really short on time. Easy ideas that won't break the bank or need any fancy ingredients.
winter veg stir-fry
There are a few recipes I will be trying and others that just reminded me of how quick some dishes can be.

Even though there is a lot of recipes with meat and fish, I was pleased to see tofu used in quite a few of the dishes.

The author is Jules Clancy who has a blog called Stone Soup, where she specialises in quick meals.

I hadn't heard of the blog before, but it's a rather nice looking blog, so I think I will be returning to it soon.

Jules is doing a blog tour and challenges me to pick an ingredient and then she would come up with some ideas, I decided on leeks as I just don't use them enough. Here is what she came up with.


The first draft of '5 Ingredients 10 Minutes' included a lovely recipe for boiled leeks tossed in a herby vinaigrette. I loved the 'squeaky' texture of the leeks in the sharp dressing. Unfortunately it was a bit borderline trying to get the leeks soft in less than ten minutes so I decided to cut it from the final book.

When I'm not boiling my leeks, the first thing I think of is slicing them finely and cooking gently in loads of butter until they're soft and melting. Since this takes a while, I recommend cooking up a batch of leeks on the weekend to keep in the fridge. They just need to be warmed to add quick 'leeky goodness' to your mid week dinners.

Use your softened leeks as well as or instead of softened onions. Or season them well and serve as a chunky 'sauce' with your favourite sausages or pan fried chicken.

Leeks love eggs so also consider using your softened eggs in a frittata or omelette. They're also great stirred into scrambled eggs to make this breakfast favourite more of quick a dinner time meal and don't forget to add some cheese.

You can check out other stops on the blog tour here:

  1. Big Spud 
  2. The English Kitchen 
  3. English Mum 
  4. Mostly Eating 

by Jules Clancy

Format: Paperback
Pages: 304
Publisher: Michael Joseph
ISBN: 978-0718158743
Published: 14 March 2013
22.8 x 19 x 2.2 cm

Vegetarian Recipe Count 69 out of 134 recipes  

Vegan Recipe Count 47 out of 134 recipes (substituting butter and ignoring final touches of cheese or yoghurt)

Update: Jules kindly came by to thank me for reviewing her book and asked me what I thought of the vegan and vegetarian alternatives, she listed on most of the pages. I had to go back and look again. I did see she gave variations at the bottom of each dish, some to turn is gluten-free, nut-free or vegan, but to be honest, I didn't even look at the recipes in the meat or fish section. I just skipped right past them. It's something I have a habit of doing with a non-veggie cookbook, but after going back through, I see she has added veggie and vegan variations to her meat, poultry and fish recipes. Go girl!!!

So I am doing my count again.

Vegetarian Recipe Count 130 out of 134 recipes  +  meal ideas

Vegan Recipe Count 128 out of 134 recipes + meal ideas

Disclosure: The publisher sent me this book to review. I was not required to write a positive review and any opinions expressed are my own.


  1. Sounds interesting, and really, compared to many cookbooks, that vegan recipe count isn't bad... at least it would give someone lots of ideas. I might have to have a look for this one, thanks for the review.

    1. That's ok Jo. I was surprised at how many vegan recipes there were too and pleased there was a fair amount of tofu recipes.

  2. Thanks for writing about my book Jac!

    And thanks for doing the veggie / vegan recipe count for me... I've had a few people ask me.

    Interested in what you thought of having the variations for each recipe which give suggestions for vegans / vegetarians?

    1. Thanks for pointing that out Jules, I don't venture into the meat/poultry/fish sections of a book generally. I have gone back for a look and changed my recipe count. That's brilliant Jules! I was pretty pleased with it any way, but it is a really great after work recipe book for veggies and vegans.

  3. Are they largely quite healthy recipes? I shall have to check this out. I probably wouldn't use this book myself, but the cancer patients that I see might find this useful to give them quick ideas in the midst of treatment. Thanks for sharing this. Other minimal ingredient books are fairly dire

    1. Yes, they are pretty healthy as a whole and each recipe gives you variations, ie no dairy, vegan etc

  4. Replies
    1. I thought that too, but if you think you can cook bulgar wheat, couscous, pasta and stir fry in just 10 minutes the possibilities start to open up.


I love reading comments, so thank you for taking the time to leave one. Unfortunately, I'm bombarded with spam, so I've turned on comment moderation. I'll publish your comments as soon as I can and respond to them. Don't panic, they will disappear when you hit publish. Jac x