But, aside from your standard fried foods, what can
you make with an air fryer – and why is everyone so obsessed with them?
Clare Andrews has gone from home cook to cookbook
chef with the help of her air fryer.
“There weren’t many recipes around at the start of
my journey, everything was quite beige, but that seems to have changed. Now, people
are finding air fryers a low-cost and healthy way to cook,” she says.
“Air fryers became huge in lockdown and the
cost-of-living crisis is making them more popular,” she notes.
We are all increasingly aware of the cost and
nutritional value of our food (plus the cost of cooking it), and Andrews
believes air fryers could help solve both problems.
“You don’t need to use oil at all. The air fryer
still gets food crispy without it, because it cooks at such high heat. As far
as money saving goes, you use less energy than a conventional oven.”
Her number one tip is simple: “Don’t overfill your
basket. It won’t be crispy, there’s no point overfilling. Start small.”
Here are three of her most exciting air-fryer
recipes to try yourself…
1. Biscoff and strawberry tarts
270g pack of filo pastry sheets
4tbsp Biscoff spread
200g strawberries, hulled and quartered
Icing sugar, for dusting
1. Carefully unroll your filo pastry, and tear each
sheet into six to eight even squares. You don’t need to be too neat with these,
as they will be layered up in your silicone moulds.
2. Once your pastry is prepared, start to layer the
filo sheets into your silicone cupcake cases, like nests. I like to layer three
to four sheets in each case.
3. Add one teaspoon of Biscoff to the base of each
filo cup, then transfer to the air fryer and cook at 180°C for 10 minutes,
until the pastry is crisp and golden.
4. Once the tart cases are cooked, simply top them
with the chopped strawberries, dust with icing sugar and serve.
2. Turkish-style stuffed aubergine with saffron and
1 aubergine, halved lengthways
1 red onion, roughly chopped
1 red pepper, deseeded and roughly chopped
1 courgette, roughly chopped
1tsp harissa paste
1tbsp olive oil
Olive oil spray, to cook
2tbsp pomegranate seeds, to garnish
A small bunch of fresh coriander leaves, picked and
chopped, to garnish
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the saffron and yoghurt sauce:
A pinch of saffron (optional)
120ml low-fat Greek yoghurt
1. Lay your aubergine halves, cut-side up, on a
board and use a spoon to scoop out the flesh to make boat shapes. The aim is to
make a well just large enough to hold the other vegetables, so don’t try to
remove all of the flesh.
2. Roughly chop the scooped-out aubergine flesh,
then add to a large bowl along with the chopped red onion, red pepper and
3. Add the harissa paste and olive oil to the bowl
with the vegetables, and give everything a good mix to combine, ensuring that all
of the vegetables are well coated. Season with salt and pepper and stir again.
4. Spoon the vegetable mixture into the hulled
aubergine halves, piling them up nice and high to make a generous portion.
5. Transfer the filled aubergine boats to the air
fryer, spray with a little olive oil and cook at 180°C for 15-20 minutes, until
all of the vegetables are tender.
6. While the aubergines are cooking, make the
saffron dip by soaking the saffron in two tablespoons of boiling water for a
couple of minutes, if using. Put the yoghurt in a serving bowl, season with
salt and pepper, and pour over the bloomed saffron mixture. Stir to combine.
7. Transfer the cooked aubergines to serving
plates, and scatter them with pomegranate seeds and fresh coriander, then serve
hot, with the saffron and yoghurt sauce alongside.
3. All-in-one weekend brunch
1 medium potato, peeled and finely sliced into
1tsp English mustard powder
100g fresh spinach, washed
130g chorizo, diced
80g Cheddar cheese, grated
Olive oil, for spraying
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. Spray your dish with a little olive oil, then
arrange the potato discs in a single layer in the base of the dish. Sprinkle
over the mustard powder and pour over the milk. Cover the potatoes with the
spinach in an even layer, then scatter over the chopped chorizo. Top with the
grated Cheddar, then crack both eggs over and season generously with salt and
2. Transfer the dish to the air fryer and cook at
180°C for 10-15 minutes, checking every five minutes, until everything is
cooked through and the cheese is bubbling. Serve hot.
The Ultimate Air Fryer Cookbook by Clare Andrews is
published by Penguin Michael Joseph on February 16.