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Planning Retirement Online

Recipe Inspiration from Waitrose


Here at LaterLife we have compiled some recipes in association with Waitrose for you to enjoy at home.

Why not try something different with recipes using this Month's Health Food, Chesnuts?


See more Recipes from Waitrose

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Skewered Beef with Cabbage and Water ChestnutsSkewered Beef with Cabbage and Water Chestnuts

For something special, try these steak skewers seasoned with Chinese spices.

  • Preparation time: 20 minutes, plus 15 minutes marinating
  • Cooking time: 15 minutes
  • Total time: 50 minutes

Makes: 6 skewers


  • 4 x 120g Waitrose British Beef Lean Fillet Steaks
  • 2 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • 2 tsp Bart Spices Chinese Five Spice Paste
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1 tbsp clear honey
  • 1 pack Waitrose Dwarf Green Cabbage
  • 227g can Amoy Water Chestnuts, drained
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Cut steaks into thin strips. In a bowl combine the soy sauce, Chinese five spice, garlic, honey and seasoning. Add the beef, cover and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes.

  2. Remove 18 large outer leaves from the cabbage. In a pan of boiling water, blanch these leaves for 1-2 minutes, then drain and plunge into a bowl of cold water.

  3. Thread a strip of beef onto a long metal or wooden skewer. Fold a blanched cabbage leaf into three and tuck a water chestnut in the cavity. Push the skewer through the cabbage and water chestnut parcel. Alternate with more beef and cabbage parcels. Repeat to make 6 skewers.

  4. Cook over a prepared barbecue or under a preheated grill for 10 minutes, turning once and basting with any remaining marinade.

  5. Scatter with sesame seeds and serve with rice noodles.


Seared Pigeon Breasts in Sweet Wine, with Rosemary-Infused ChestnutsSeared Pigeon Breasts in Sweet Wine, with Rosemary-Infused Chestnuts

  • Preparation time: 15 minutes, plus marinating
  • Cooking time: 35 minutes
  • Total time: 50 minutes, plus overnight marinating

Serves: 6


  • 1 carrot, finely chopped
  • 1 red onion, finely chopped
  • 12 pigeon breasts
  • Pinch of dried chilli flakes
  • ½ tbsp chopped rosemary
  • 2 fat garlic cloves, crushed
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 375ml bottle dessert wine
  • 3 tbsp olive oil

Rosemary-Infused chestnuts

  • 200g vacuum-packed whole chestnuts
  • 150ml olive oil
  • 2 sprigs rosemary, bruised


  1. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a frying pan over a medium heat and fry the carrot and onion until soft and slightly coloured. Leave to cool completely.

  2. Put the pigeon into a bowl or plastic bag with the onion and carrot, the chilli, rosemary, garlic, seasoning, 2 tbsp olive oil and the wine. Cover or seal. Marinate for at least 6 hours or overnight.

  3. When you are ready to cook the pigeon breasts, drain from the marinade. Pour the marinade into a pan, bring to the boil, then simmer gently for 20 minutes or until reduced by half. A foam will develop initially but this will disperse. Adjust the seasoning and set aside.

  4. Meanwhile, put the chestnuts in a saucepan, cover with olive oil and add the rosemary. Heat up very gently until the oil is warm but not hot. Remove from the heat and leave to infuse for about 15 minutes. Drain with a slotted spoon.

  5. Heat a griddle pan over a medium heat until smoking. In batches, sear the pigeon breasts for 3 minutes each side (they should still be pink). Serve with the sauce and the chestnuts.


Rooty Chestnut PiesRooty Chestnut Pies

These pies are perfect for vegetarians. They can be made the night before and chilled before baking. Or make the pastry in advance and freeze until required.


  • Preparation time: 25 minutes
  • Cooking time: 25 minutes
  • Total time: 50 minutes

Serves: 2


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 red onion, cut into wedges
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 100g Chantenay carrots, halved lengthways
  • 2 parsnips, cut into 3cm pieces
  • 175g cooked, peeled whole chestnuts
  • 1 heaped tbsp plain flour
  • 150ml strong beer, such as Black Sheep Ale
  • 200ml Waitrose Cooks Ingredients Vegetable Stock
  • 1 tbsp fresh sage, chopped

For the pastry

  • 1 tbsp walnut pieces
  • 175g plain flour
  • 75g chilled butter, diced
  • 1 egg, beaten, to glaze


  1. To make the pastry, put the walnuts in a food processor and whizz until finely chopped. Sift the flour and a pinch of salt into a bowl, and rub in the butter until the mixture is the consistency of breadcrumbs. Stir in the walnuts, then add 1-2 tablespoons water, or enough to mix to a soft dough. Wrap in clingfilm and chill in the fridge until needed.

  2. Heat the oil in a medium, heavy-based pan. Add the onion, garlic, carrots, parsnips and chestnuts, and gently fry for 4-5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until golden. Reduce the heat, then stir in the flour. Gradually add the ale and stock, then bring to a simmer. Stir in the sage and season. Bring back to a simmer, then cover and simmer gently for 20 minutes, or until the vegetables are just tender.

  3. Preheat the oven to 190°C, gas mark 5. Divide the mixture between two 300ml ovenproof pie dishes. Cut the pastry in half and roll out each piece so that it covers a dish. Lay the pastry over the top of the dishes and press on to the rim to seal. Trim the edges. Brush with the beaten egg and make a small hole in each pastry lid, to allow steam to escape.

  4. Bake for 20-25 minutes until the pastry is golden and cooked through. Serve with Christmas vegetable accompaniments.

Cook's tips

Re-roll any remaining pastry and use to garnish the top of the pies – you can make a bow, as we have here.

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