For more than four decades Mary Berry CBE has brought her unfussy and stress-free approach to cooking and baking into our homes, endearing her into our hearts. Discover the dishes that Mary cooks for family and friends throughout the year, whether it’s a casual get-together or a full-on celebration feast…


This is a hearty, healthy soup full of flavour and goodness. Serve it piping hot with some crusty bread.


1 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 carrots, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
100g (31⁄2oz) dried Puy lentils
100g (31⁄2oz) pearl barley
680g jar passata
1.5 litres (23⁄4pints) chicken
stock or vegetable stock
salt and freshly ground
black pepper
2 tsp sugar
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar


  1. Heat the oil in a deep frying pan, add the onion and carrots, and fry over a high heat, stirring, for 10 minutes or until lightly brown.
  2. Add the garlic, lentils, and barley and fry for 1 minute. Blend in the passata and stock and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  3. Bring to the boil, cover with a lid, and simmer for 40–45 minutes (50–55 minutes for 12) or until the lentils and barley are tender.
  4. Add the sugar and vinegar, check the seasoning, and serve.

IN THE AGA – At step 3, cover with a lid and transfer to the simmering oven for 45–55 minutes.


These individual crumbles are scrumptious and so easy to make. You could equally make one large crumble – use a 1.2 litre (2 pint) ovenproof dish for six – and bake for 30 minutes. Serve with cream, ice cream or warm custard. 


Special equipment: 6 x size 1 (150ml/5fl oz) ramekins

900g (2lb) Bramley apples, peeled and cut into 1cm (1⁄2in) cubes
175g (6oz) ready-to-eat dried apricots, snipped into small pieces
100ml (31⁄2fl oz) apple juice
100g (31⁄2oz) demerara sugar
100g (31⁄2oz) plain flour
50g (13⁄4oz) cold butter, cubed
30g (1oz) hazelnuts, chopped


  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C (180°C fan/400°F/Gas 6). Put the apples, apricots, apple juice, and all but 1 heaped tablespoon (3 level tablespoons for 12) of the demerara sugar into a saucepan. Bring to the boil, cover with a lid, and simmer for 5–7 minutes or until the apples are just soft. Remove from the heat and divide among the ramekins.
  2. Put the flour and butter into a mixing bowl. Using the tips of your fingers, rub the cold butter into the flour until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add the remaining sugar and the hazelnuts and mix together.
  3. Sprinkle the crumble topping over the apples in the ramekins, then place on a baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes or until the crumble is light golden brown and the fruit is bubbling around the edges.

IN THE AGA – Bake the crumbles in the middle of the roasting oven for 15 minutes or until golden.

The new edition of Mary Berry Cooks up a Feast by Mary Berry and Lucy Young is published by DK (3 October 2019, £25) 

Nadia Duncan

Author: Nadia Duncan


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