Sunday, 30 August 2015

Simply Good Food TV and review of The Art of Making Gelato.

Well, this month has been a foodtastic month for Food Glorious Food. A couple of my recipes have been featured in The Guardian and The Telegraph and I'm incredibly excited to share that I will be filming a Jamaican food series over at Simply Good Food TV. If you are unsure of what Simply Good Food TV is, it is a brand new app where you can watch all your favourite chefs, alongside up and coming chefs in one place. How fabulous is that? The app is available to download on your IPad or Android and it's free to install. I'm heading to Jamaican next week so I may be further inspired, but this is the cuisine I grew up, enjoyed (especially during my elongated 6 week summer breaks as a child) and am so excited to share with you.


I can't promise to bring you sunshine whilst I am away in Jamaica, but I can encourage you to enjoy the very last days of Summer, with a dish that is synonymous with summer: Gelato and ice-cream. 
The Art of Making Gelato: 50 Flavours To Make At Home by Morgan Morano is a great introductory book for those that love the cold dessert. I'll be honest, I've never made my ice-cream up until this year and haven't been satisfied with the ice-cream that's available in the supermarkets. I still had my ice-cream fix when I've visited food festivals, but this book has helped me create the beautiful ice-cream that I sampled when visiting Italy. I do think it helps if you purchase an ice-cream maker but there are instructions to make your own ice-cream without an ice-cream maker in this book.
The Art of Making Gelato first gives a thorough introduction to ice-cream, gelato and sorbets, alongside the ideal home gelato machines, tools and ingredients. There is a very comprehensive step-by-step guide to making gelato and sorbetto- which I feel is invaluable as there are easy to follow pictures to make fail-proof gelato and sorbets.

The following chapters include:
  • The Basics, recipes to try include Italian Espresso and Chocolate Chip.
  • The Classics (my favourite chapter), recipes to try include: Coconut Cream, Citrus Cream, Sicilian Cake with Candied Fruit and Creme Brûlée. 
  • Nuts: stand out recipes include: pistachio and walnut and pear.
  • Non Traditional, recipes to try include: Avocado, Doughnut and Maple.
  • Sorbet, for those that fancy something a little lighter, recipes to try include: Lemon, Orange, Raspberry and Forrest Berries.
I have been experimenting with different ice-cream flavours and although the pictures shown below is not the recipe given, this is a wonderful book for basic ice-cream ideas of flavour combination.

The recipe that I chose to share is Creme Brûlée ice-cream, everything which I love about ice-cream: rich, creamy, delicious and indulgent.
Ingredients
48g milk powder
215g granulated sugar
1 pinch of salt
20g tapioca starch
250g heavy cream
600g whole milk
4g vanilla extract
33g light corn syrup (golden syrup)
4 egg yolks
1 vanilla bean, sliced down the middle and opened, seeds scraped out
granulated sugar for caramelising

Prepare
1) Mix all the milk powder, sugar, salt and tapioca starch in a bowl.
2) Add the heavy cream, whole milk and vanilla extract and whisk well to incorporate all of the dry ingredients into the liquid.
3) Whisk in the corn syrup and egg yolks.
Cook
4) Pour the mixture into a 1.42 litter saucepan, using a spatula to scrape the sides of the bowl. Whisk in the vanilla bean seeds. Place the saucepan on medium-high heat and cook, whisking continuously to prevent any burning or clumping. Whisk slowly in the beginning and increase speed as the mixture gets warmer and begins to steam and thicken. It should thicken without boiling after 8-10 minutes on the heat: watch carefully so it doesn't burn. Once the mixture has thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon, continue cooking 15 seconds longer, whisking vigorously. Then immediately remove from the heat.
5) Pour the mixture into a clean glass or stainless-steel bowl and lay plastic we rap directly on the surface to prevent a skin from forming on top. Allow the mixture to sit for 30-45 minutes, until no longer hot. Then place in the refrigerator to cool completely, about  4 hours. If the mixture needs to be used right away, submerge most of the bowl in an ice bath and let sit 30 to 40 minutes, refreshing the ice if necessary.
6) Once the mixture has cooled completely and thickened further, pour it into the bowl of the gelato machine and churn the gelato according to the manufacturer's directions. The gelato will expand and should spin unit lit's thick and creamy but still soft enough to scoop into a storage container, about 30 to 55 minutes.
7) Using a rubber spatula, scoop the gelato into a glass storage container that would be appropriate for serving. Make sure it is evenly distributed in the container and then smooth out the gelato's surface a much as possible.
8) Press a piece of plastic wrap or parchment paper directly on the surface of the gelato, seal with an airtight lid, and place in the freezer.
9) Freeze until very firm, at least 10 hours. After 10 hours, pull the gelato from the freezer, remove the parchment paper or plastic wrap, and use a spatula or other utensil to smooth out of the surface of the gelato one more time. Place the gelato back in the freezer for another 10 minutes while you prepare the torch.
Brûlée
10) Sprinkle enough sugar on the gelato to cover the surface. Pick up the dish and lightly tilt in all directions so that the sugar coats the entire the surface. With the torch flame setting on a medium-low heat the surface, lightly caramelising the first layer of sugar. Spend no more than 5 minutes going over the entire surface and then return the gelato, uncovered to the freezer for 20 minutes. It's important to work as quickly as possible to snare that the gelato does not melt. Add a second coat of sugar to the surface of the gelato and repeat the caramelising process two more times, browning the last layer of sugar as much as possible. The last layer may take a itte more time to get the sugar to caramelise and fully cane colour.
11) Place the gelato in the freezer one sat time for about an hour to allow the surface of the gelato to freeze and the creme brûlée is ready to serve.
Serve
12) Enjoy the fresh gelato as soon as possible. If using after 2 days, allow 8 to 12 minutes for the gelato to soft outside of the freezer before eating.

Thanks to the lovely people at Race Point Publishing, I have three copies of The Art of Making Gelato to giveaway to readers of my blog, all you need to do is follow the below instructions:

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Disclaimer: I received a copy of The Art of Making Gelato, I was not required to write a positive review and as always, all opinions are my own.
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Thursday, 27 August 2015

Caribbean Pimms and Grace Summer Drinks - Caribbean Food Week

At the time of writing this, the weather (in the West Midlands) is sunny, but I''m not sure for how long for. As documented in previous posts, summer is my favourite season and what drink is more synonymous with summer than Pimms. Pimms, the English based drink with a wonderful blend of gin, liqueur, fruit and spices is enjoyed by many, particularly on a lovely warm summers day. There are many additional ingredients that can be added to make Pimms and I have my own version which I often adapted. But, the lovely people at Caribbean Food Week have given a tropical twist to the English classic drink. Caribbean Pimms and Grace Summer Drinks is perfect for the bank holiday and carnival weekend or if you want to evoke Summer in the up and coming Autumn season.
My Caribbean Pimms is a little dark because I also used a can of Caribbean cola. I loved the combination of fruit and slight fire from the ginger beer, I found the Pimms to be incredibly moreish and was quickly gone by family. This drink is incredibly easy to make, all you now need is your flip flops and some Bob Marley music playing in the background.


Recipe for Caribbean Pimms and Grace Summer Drinks from Caribbean Food Week.
Serves 6, Preparation Time 5 minutes, cooking time 0 minutes.

Ingredients
250ml Pimms no1
4 cans of Grace ginger beer
1/2 cucumber, chopped
1 apple, cored and chopped
1 orange, sliced
3 strawberries, sliced
1 handful of fresh mint leaves.

Optional ingredients
1/2 lime, sliced
1/2 lemon, slice
2-3 fresh pineapple, chopped into chunks.

Method
1) Mix all the ingredients together in a large glass pitcher
2) Serve chilled or over ice and enjoy!

xxx
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Monday, 24 August 2015

Ackee and Saltfish - Caribbean Food Week.

It's Caribbean Food Week ....... Yay. For those of you who do not know, Caribbean Food Week, hosted by Grace Foods is in it's third year and all things Caribbean will be celebrated with supermarket offers, promotions and mouthwatering photo on social media sites between 24th - 31st August. I'm quite glad to be honest, it's about time the wonderful, exotic and delicious dishes from my childhood is celebrated in the media and it's also a wonderful opportunity for people to see how accessible Caribbean dishes are.
The first recipe that I have decided to share for Caribbean Food Week is a the national dish of Jamaica (where my family are originally from). When people think of Jamaican cuisine, they tend to acknowledge "jerk chicken" "curry goat' and "patties". These three dishes are of course popular in Jamaica and the Jamaican dispoara but the national dish of Jamaica is ackee and salt fish. What is ackee, I hear you say and what is salt fish? Well ackee is grown on trees, it resembles scrambled egg and has a delicate taste. The salt fish is salted cod, a dish that stems from our colonial era. I would eat this for breakfast over the weekend as per traditional in Jamaica, but if this is too much for you, it also works well with for dinner. I like to serve this with fried plantains and roasted breadfruit, but this works just as well with some crusty fresh bread. Simply divine. 
Ackee and Saltfish

Gorgeous hamper for Caribbean Food Week. 
Recipe from Caribbean Food Week
Serves 4 people
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients
1 tin 540g Dunns Rivee Jamaican Ackee, drained
2 tins 125g Grace Salt Fish, drained and flaked
2 onions, chopped
2 spring onions, finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1/2 scotch bonnet pepper, finely chopped
2 tomatoes, chopped
1 red pepper, chopped
1 tsp Dunns River Thyms
2 tbsp vegetable oil
Salt and Pepper, to taste.

Method
1) Heat the oil in a large frying pan and fry the garlic, onions, spring onions, peppers and scotch bonnet peppers on a high heat for around 3-5 minutes until sweated.
2) Drain your Grace Salt Fish tins and flake with a fork directly into the pan, add your Dunn's River Thyme for 3 to 5 minutes.
3) Add your remaining tomatoes and your Dunn's River Ackee and fry for a further 1-2 minutes until al your ingredients and flavours are well-combined. When stirring the ackee, be careful to stir these very lightly as to not break up the ackee which are quite fragile.
4) Add salt and pepper to taste.

Disclaimer: I received a lovely hamper from Caribbean Food Week. I was not required to write a positive review and as always, all opinions are my own.
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Sunday, 23 August 2015

New Vlog Post Red Velvet Chocolate Celebration Cake and Stellar Cake Tin Review.

Chocolate cake is enjoyed in my house whether it is in the depths of winter or the warmth of Summer. And what's not to love about chocolate cake: it's rich, indulgent and is a sensation on my taste buds. My Red Velvet Chocolate Celebration Cake is easy to make and the results are impressive. This cake will be loved by the whole family, I guarantee.






With the baking and Autumn season upon us, why not invest in some reliable and efficient bakeware to help you achieve those wonderful cakes and bakes. The lovely cake tin as seen in this vlog post is from the new Stellar Cookware baking range. The 10inch deep cake tin is perfect for baking celebration cakes as it has efficient and even heat distribution which makes superior baking results. Their new range of bakeware is also non-stick so the surfaces will never rust or peel. This cake tin would also double up as a baking tin for savoury bakes (I have some delicious baked pasta recipes in mind) and the product has the Stellar Lifetime guarantee. Retailing at £16.50 it's not the cheapest of cake tins, but as stated it has a lifetime guarantee and once you feel it (it's heavy duty) it's a life investment. Also, this range can be used on the hob, under the grill and in the oven with temperatures up to 240C. 


Disclaimer: I received the Stellar Hard Andonised Cake tin for review purposes, I was not required to write a positive review.

xxx
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Friday, 21 August 2015

Mamushka by Olia Hercules Book Review

Let me introduce you to the culinary delights of the "Wild East". If you are not sure what the Wild East, it's been a phase coined on social media sites when talking about and referring to Olia Hercules debut cookery book focusing on recipes from the Ukraine and beyond. I've never had any dishes or own a book on the Eastern Europe, so had no idea to expect. Tell a lie, I had some idea, a bit stereotypical such as potatoes and cabbage and although these ingredients do feature, there is much more to this book than this. I also love this book because whilst the cookbook market has become awashed with healthy eating and lifestyle cookbooks, which is fabulous, but give me a book with carbohydrates, cake and fat, oh, I'm hungry thinking about it. The photographs are beautiful and feature Olia's family which adds to the charm of this book. 
There are many recipes which I want to try, namely the Prague Cake, Ice-Cream Cake and the Pork Ribs and Dumplings. Olia writes beautifully about the history of her Ukraine and her family's diverse and rich cultural heritage. The chapters have Ukrainian writing next to it which gives this book a fabulous unique feel to it. If you have never sampled cuisine from this part of the world, you are missing out, I am inspired with the diverse range of recipes and I am sure this is a cookery book which I will continue to use over and over again. Without a date, this is one of the best cookbooks published this year, alongside Rosie Birkett's A Lot on Her Plate which will be reviewed on the blog shortly. 



The chapters include:
  • Introduction
  • Broths and Soups, recipes to try include:Ukrainian Beetroot Broth and Gherkin, Beef and Barley Broth.
  • Breads and Pastries, so many stand out recipes including Ukrainian Garlic Bread, Greek Breads with Spring Onion, Moldovan Bread with cheese and sorrel and Ukrainian Stuffed Buns.
  • Vegetables and Salads, recipes to try include; Beetroot and Prune Salad, Armenian Beans with a tomato salad and Potatoes with Pork and Shallots. 
  • Dumplings and Noodles, again a beautiful chapter with a number of dines including: Pork Ribs and Dumplings, Soviet Goose Noodles, Central Asian Chicken and Pasta and Moldovan Pasta.
  • Meat and Fish, recipes to try include: Mutton in Coriander, Azerbaijani Chicken with Prunes and Walnuts, BBQ Catfish and Cured Mackerel.
  • Fermented Pickles and Preserves: stand out recipes include Sour Aubergines and Lick Your Fingers Tomatoes.
  • Sweet Conserves: recipes include Plum, Rum and Raisin Conserve, Raspberry Conserve and Baked Quince.
  • Desserts: Recipes which I plan on making include: Wasp Nest Buns, Baked Ukrainian Cheesecake, Honey Cake and delicious looking Prague Cake.
  • Drinks: Thirst quenchers include: Summer Fruit Punch and Russian Fermented Rye Drink. 
Gerogian Garliky Poussins pre cook.

Georgian Garliky Poussins cooked. 

Georgian Garliky Poussins.

Chicken Liver, Buckwheat and Shallots.

Chicken Liver, Buckwheat & Crispy Shallots. 

The Recipe which I chose to share is for Chicken Liver, Buckwheat & Crispy Shallots, which was delicious. 

Serves 2 as a starter (although when doubled serves 2 as a main)

Ingredients
100g shallots, thinly sliced
50g plain flour
6 tablespoons sunflower oil
200g chicken livers

Buckwheat
2 tbsp olive oil
2 shallots, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
50g celery, finely diced

1 carrot, peeled and finely diced
2 sprigs of thyme, finely chopped
100g buckwheat, toasted
200ml vegetable or chicken stock
sea salt flakes and freshly ground pepper

Method
1) Dust the shallots slices in the flour. Heat 4 tbsp of the sunflower oil in a frying pan and shallow fry the shallots over a medium-low heat, stirring often, for 2 minutes or until they are crispy and light golden. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper.
2) Meanwhile, for the buckwheat, heat the olive oil in the pan, add the diced shallots, garlic, celery, carrot and thyme and sweat them over a medium-low heat for about 10 minutes or until soft  and aromatic.
3) Add the buckwheat and stock, season with salt and pepper and cook over a low heat for 20 minutes or until the buckwheat absorbs all the stock
4) Heat the remaining sunflower in a frying pan, add the chicken livers and saute for 5-8 minutes or until they are well caramelised and cook through. Serve with the crispy shallots and buckwheat.

Disclaimer: I received a copy from The Gannet magazine, however all of my views are my own. 
xxx
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Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Sweetcorn Fritters with Chorizo Salsa & Soured Cream.

There's nothing quite like eating a hearty weekend breakfast. I don't know about you, but after the slog of Monday-Friday and eating the same routine of either granola, juice or fruit (I try to be healthy mid-week). There are endless ways to make gorgeous, hearty, delicious and exotic breakfasts from around the world these days which is fabulous for adventurous foodies. Not that you need to venture far and wide for this beautiful breakfast and brunch recipe (and would also make a fabulous lunch). Sweetcorn and chorizo are readily available and this dish can be prepared in under 30 minutes. I loved how the sweetcorn complimented and worked so well in the batter and the intense flavour of the chorizo topped with soured cream is a taste sensation to behold.
Here is my Sweetcorn Fritters with Chorizo Salsa and Soured Cream.




Recipe for Sweetcorn Fritters with Chorizo Salsa and Soured Cream, taken from Lisa Faulkner The Way I Cook.
For the Fritters
100g plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 egg
125 milk
300g sweetcorn
1-2 tbsp oil
salt and pepper
soured cream, to serve.

For the salsa 
2 tbsp olive oil
1 red onion, finely chopped 
150g chorizo chopped
1 garlic clove

Sift the flour, baking powder and some salt into a bowl. Make
a well in the centre.
In a jug, beat together the egg and milk and pour into the
flour. Whisk until you have a reasonably thick batter (you may
not need to use all the milk).
Put the sweetcorn in another bowl and add the batter. You
may not need to use all the batter – you are aiming for quite a
thick sweetcorn mixture.
Heat the oil in a frying pan over a medium heat and, when
hot, spoon in tablespoons of the batter. Fry for a few minutes
on each side. Keep warm while you make the salsa.
Heat the oil in a frying pan, add the onion and cook over a
medium heat until soft. Add the chorizo and the garlic, and,
once the chorizo has a nice bit of colour, add the tomatoes
and the purée. Season and cook until the tomatoes have
softened and the sauce is coming together but still chunky.
Stir in the sugar and cook for a further minute. Stir through
the coriander.
Serve the salsa warm, on top of the fritters, with a dollop of
soured cream and an extra sprinkle of coriander.

xxx
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Friday, 14 August 2015

The Ultimate Mediterranean Diet Cookbook: Review and Giveaway.

The cookbook world has been inundated with healthy and diet cookbooks. As a nation, this can be translated to that we must be on a quest to either lose weight or became healthier happier people. I love how other nations on the continent in-cooperate their healthy eating so naturally and is part of their every day diet. The Ultimate Mediterranean Diet Cookbook by Amy Riolo shares recipes, diet and lifestyle secrets from countries that border the Mediterranean sea. There is a thorough introduction and a diet pyramid on how to enjoy the Mediterranean diet starting by being physically active and enjoying meals at the bottom with meat being advised to eating less. The benefits of a Mediterranean diet includes: longevity, reduced inflammation and improved mental capacity. I liked flicking through the recipes here and there are still many recipes for inspiration, either for a quick snack, a healthy breakfast and light yet sumptuous suppers.

The chapters in this book include:
  • Benefits of the Mediterranean diet.
  • Plant-Based Foods (a comprehensive chapter covering grains, fruits and vegetables), stand out recipes include Mediterranean - Style Corn Bread, North African Spice-Dusted Sweet Potatoes, Arabia Rice and Lamb Skillet and Spanish Dried Fruit, Nut and Cheese Plate.
  • Fish and Seafood, recipes to try include Italian Halibut with Grapes and Olive Oil, Sicilian Swordfish Bundles and Trout Cooked in Parchment. 
  • Dairy: Farm-Fresh Flavours, recipes to try Cypriot, Watermelon and Basil Kabos, Turkish Yoghurt, Garlic and Dill Sauce and Spiced Greek Yoghurt with Apricots. 
  • Poultry and Eggs, recipes to try include Calabrian Chicken, Pepper, Tomato and Potato Stew, Jereusalem-Style Chicken with Rice, Golden Raisins and Pie Nuts and Israeli Shakshouka-Style Eggs.
  • Meat and Sweets: Mediterranean indulgences, stand out recipes include Middle Eastern Lamb and Okra Stew, Corsican-Style Garlic-Laced Beef Stew and Sweet Carrot and Cardamom Torte. 
The recipe that I chose to share is Israeli Shakshouka-Style Egg, perfect as a hearty breakfast or a light lunch or dinner. I served this for dinner with warmed pitta bread and not only did this dish tasted incredibly awesome, it was nutritious and good for me. 
Israeli Shakshouka-Style Eggs.

Israeli Shakshouka-Style Eggs.
Recipe for Israeli Shakshouka Style Eggs
Described as the Tunisian, Algerian, Moroccan and Libyan origin and extremely popular in Israel.
2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil.
2 tbsp harrisa sauce (I use paste).
2tbsp tomato paste.
1tsp paprika.
1 onion.
2 large red peppers, trimmed, seeded and cut into small pieces.
3 cups chopped ripe tomatoes.
6 large eggs.
1/2 cup of plain Greek yoghurt.
4 pieces whole wheat pitta.

Method
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over a medium heat. Add the harrisa, tomato paste, paprika, onion and peppers. Stir well to combine and allow to cook until peppers are tender 5 to 7 minutes. Add the tomatoes, stir and increase heat to high. When the mixture begins to boil reduce heat to low and simmer until sauce thickens, about 10 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning.
Make 6 wells in the sauce. Break the eggs into the wells. Using a fork gently swirl the egg whites into the sauce. Simmer uncovered until the egg whites are set but the egg yolks are not hard, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to set for a few minutes before serving. Serve with yoghurt, labenh and hot pitta bread.

The lovely people at Fair Winds Press are offering 3 lucky readers of my blog a copy of this book.

  • Follow the instructions on the rafflecopter widget
  • Join my blog and leave a comment (click on the left hand corner of the site and join using Google friend connector). This is an ESSENTIAL REQUIREMENT.
  • For additional entries, subscribe to my Youtube channel, follow me on Instragram, Google Plus, Facebook and Twitter.
  • All entries will be checked and verified.
  • Rafflecopter will pick a winner at random.
  • The competition will run from 14.08.15 - 18.09.15
  • Winners will need to respond in 5 working days.
  • Please feel free to share the giveaway.

xxx
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Sunday, 9 August 2015

The Breakfast Club Spitalfields

The Breakfast Club is a restaurant across several locations in London, which as stated serves breakfast. I initially though this was some form of secret breakfast club or a super club, but it is in fact a restaurant selling affordable and hearty breakfasts of champions. Located in the tourist places such as Soho and London Bridge, alongside places that are slightly out such as Angel and Canary Wharf, me and my cousins dined at the Spitalfields branch. I planned on visiting Spitafields market so it made sense to visit this branch. It's located of a side street tucked away near Liverpool Station, luckily my Google maps was on so it was easier to find. And what made it easier to find, was that I saw a queue forming outside a building and upon closer inspection it was the breakfast club. We were seated in around 15 minutes, which was made bearable as there were plenty of quirkiness inside the restaurant to observe. I don't know whether this is the case for all the restaurants, but I loved the fact that peoples photos, different currencies and also train tickets were plastered over a wall, how unique.
The seating area were fine, wooden tables, mainly a young, hip crowd but there were also families there.
The main show, the menu, I instantly loved. For someone who adores eating rich, but delicious food. The Breakfast and Lunch menu is served to 5pm and some of whats on offer includes: The Full Monty (£10.50), Boston Beans (£8.30), The All American Pancakes (£11.00) and Huevos Rancheros (£11). One thing I realised, well what my cousin mention is that the choices are limited if you do not eat pork  (as she did) or do not eat meat. Luckily (and gladly) I do, but I understand what she is saying.

We ordered a round of drinks,  Elvis Presley Milkshake (£4.50) (because my recipe for Elvis Presley Pancakes was featured in the Guardian, beetroot (£3.50)  and mango juice (£3.50) were ordered by my cousins. The Elvis was what I expected: rich, luxurious, creamy, nutty and full-fat deliciousness. Mmmm.

Trio of drinks.


The Breakfast Club.


BBQ Pulled Porks with Sauteed potatoes. 

BBQ Pulled Pork
The BBQ Pulled Pork was unusual for me, incredibly hearty and perhaps more of a brunch than a breakfast. If I had realised that it would have been so much, I would not have ordered a side dish of sautéed potatoes. On saying this, I liked this, the pork was soft and succulent and the beans were perfect to compliment the porks juices. I'm not sure how or why the poached eggs were included i this dish, I personally do not feel it added much to the dish, although it did look a little prettier. The sautéed potatoes were piping hot, crispy on the outside, soft in the inside and positively additive.

The Full English

Pancakes.





0
If you are after a hip, happening and affordable place in London check out The Breakfast Club.

xxx


The Breakfast Club Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
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Wednesday, 5 August 2015

Housewarming BBQ.

Summer is one of the most popular times for people to move homes and embark on a fresh new start. I have moved out (of my family home) on a few occasions, when I spent a few months in Rio de Janeiro, when I moved to Leicester and when I moved to mid-Wales (I like to get about). In the period where you are in the process of moving or just have settled, a hearty home cooked meal is probably the last thing that's on your mind. But once you have sorted out through the many boxes, this is the prefect time to invite those that you love and care about with a perfect housewarming BBQ. 
Volition Removals have a lovely post on their site on the ideal housewarming party which is handy to help you get started.
My ideal housewarming BBQ post is very similar to my ideal BBQ Post, but it is always worth revisiting. No BBQ housewarming is complete without a burger recipe, to which I have many ideas which I have previously shared on the blog. A delicious, but messy burger which can be served for a BBQ Housewarming is this gorgeous Sunny-Side Up burgers - perfect food to get messy with. Veggies will love these Spicy Bean Burgers, Turkey Club Burgers make an interest twist on the classic beef burger, of which I am sure you have many recipes for this.  As with all barbecues, you need a side dish, something that your guests can have a quick nibble to serve such as hot sweet potato wedges with jerk butter.  A side salad is important, which I have a favourite: Mango, feta, smoked salmon & avocado salad with fresh lime juice. 

Sunny Side Up Burgers.


Spicy Bean Burgers

Turkey Club Burgers
Sweet Potato Wedges

Side Salad

For desserts - which is a must, I suggest my Double Coconut and Berry Cheesecake, it's been featured in The Guardian so you know it's good.



Disclaimer: In association with Volition Removals

xxx
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Sunday, 2 August 2015

August Credit Crunch Munch - Last Days Of Summer

I'm super excited to be hosting Credit Crunch Munch this month. Credit Crunch Munch is a monthly blog hop and the dream child of Camilla from Fab Food 4 All and Helen from Fuss Free Flavours. The aim of this blogging challenge is to share recipes that are delicious but are in fact (relatively frugal) and do not cost the earth. This month I would like to see seasonal recipes showcasing the last days of Summer such as Summer Berries, Courgettes, Apples, Marrow, Mullet, Cherry and the like. Of course, you still can submit a recipe if it does not include a Summer fruit and vegetables and is in line with the blogging ethos.


For example:

  • Dishes using cheaper ingredients - cheaper cuts of meats of vegetarian dishes.
  • Meals using leftovers.
  • Meals using up the end of packets
  • Substitutions of cheaper ingredients
  • Packed Lunches
  • Meals that use less energy to cook.
  • Pressure Cooking
  • Slow Cooking
  • Faster Cooking - less oven time for example
  • Batch cooking for the freezer
  • Sustainable foods
  • Foods you have grown yourself
  • Meals from reduced food in the supermarket.
I've decided to kick of this month's theme with a Double Coconut Cheesecake Topped with Summer Berries. In my local market, I often by bowls of fruit and vegetables for £1 and these Summer berries were two packets for £1, perfect in line with this blogging challenge.

To take part, simply blog about any money saving idea that is vaguely food related.  We do a full round up so I will be mentioning all the recipes that are submitted.
There are a few rules
  • Please link to the Credit Crunch Munch pages on Fuss Free Flavours (http://fussfreeflavours.com/credit-crunch-munch/ ) and Fab Food 4 All (http://www.fabfood4all.co.uk/credit-crunch-munch/ )
  • Please link to the current host (that's me then!)
  • Please use the Credit Crunch Munch Badge
  • Tweet using #creditcrunchmunch
  • Closing date 31st August 2015.
  • You are welcome to link up one or two old posts, but please republish them
  • By entering you are agreeing to let us use an image from your entry on this site, and to pin to Pinterest
  • If blogging a recipe from elsewhere on the internet or a book please be mindful of copyright
But feel free to
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My entry for the last days of Summer is my entry of Double Coconut Cheesecake with Summer Berries as featured in The Guardian.

I adore coconut, long before it became fashionable by the healthy crew, I was eating coconuts (desiccated, coconut cream and drinking coconut water) in various form, by the bucket load. I am always looking at ways to in-cooperate some of my favourite ingredients into well-known dishes and this double coconut cheesecake is no exception. Alongside loving to eat coconut, I have recently become fond of cheesecakes. For years, I was a cake girl, but I realised how ridiculously quick, delicious and easy cheesecakes are to make. I have a double hit of coconut in this cheesecake from the biscuits and the filling – I was tempted to add another coconut element but stopped short on this, because English berries, which I love, are in season. My double coconut no-bake cheesecake with berries gives you a taste of the exotic with a hint of the wonderful British Summer. Absolutely delicious.



You will need a 9-inch spring form tin and a food processor
For the base
400g coconut biscuits (I use Foxes)
150g unsalted butter, melted
For the filling
600g cream cheese (full fat)
1tbsp vanilla essence
60g caster sugar
40g desiccated coconut
For the Topping
180 g raspberries
100g strawberries (sliced or whole, your choice)
Maple syrup, for drizzling.
Method
Blitz the breadcrumbs in the food processor until the biscuits resemble breadcrumbs. Once blitzed add this in a mixing bowl and pour the melted butter over the blitz biscuits. Stir the blitz biscuits and butter with a wooden spoon until everything is fully combined. Transfer the biscuit butter mixture to the spring form tin and press down. Pop this in the fridge for an hour to let the base firm up.
In a mixing bowl, add the cream cheese, caster sugar, vanilla essence and desiccated coconut, stir using a wooden spoon until everything is mixed together. Pour the filling onto the chilled biscuit base and spread evenly using a palette knife. Pop this into the fridge for at least 4 hours so the filling can set, ideally overnight. 
Once the filling has set, top with the berries and drizzle with maple syrup.
Enjoy.


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