Thai salad

I’m back on weight watchers, and rather than thinking of things I shouldn’t be eating, I’m taking the opportunity to try some new recipes and get out of my meal rut.
One discovery from a recent WW magazine is my current fave! Thai salad – delicious, quick and easy. And healthy. What more could you want??
Base salad is red onion, white cabbage and carrot. I add some greenery to lighten it too. The recipe suggests chicken, but tonight I’ve used prawns instead. Add a simple dressing of lime juice, fish sauce and brown sugar, with chilli and peanuts to finish – scrummy!

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Soup

I’ve been feeling poorly this week, so thought I’d make some homemade soup to help me perk up. Now, I’m not a great soup maker, but I made this one up and it’s not turned out too bad!

Top tip – 1ml water weighs 1g. I always weigh liquid rather than measure as its so much easier…..

Top tip 2 – check out steenbergs – fab Yorkshire company selling spices etc – I tried a little za’atar on my veg before roasting for this soup

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This is the current view from my living room….. Go figure!

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Slow cooker curry

Gather stuff

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Organise neatly (it makes me feel like I’m on tv having my little tubs ready)

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When prepping garlic, remove any green growth from centre. Michel roux jr says that’s the bit that repeats on you. As he is a GOD I did what he said.

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Fry off spices. Be glad you have a crock pot that goes on the hob too – one less pan to wash

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Brown meat

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Add coconut milk and water

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Slow cook for 8hrs and then enjoy! With accompaniments of your choice πŸ˜‰

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Not a bad haul!

Looks like I’ve got some cooking to do!

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Happiness is…

… A freshly alphabetised herbs & spices cupboard!

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Foodie penpals reveal – Sep 2012

This has been a very exciting month on foodie penpals!

I was paired to send a parcel to Lucy, and decided to go shopping whilst on my hols in Wales. Check out what she thought here πŸ™‚

The person sending my parcel was chosen as Martyna, who lives in Lithuania. I was super excited to be paired with someone who could send me some things I wouldn’t have tried before, and requested my usual – no bananas, liquorice, sprouts & bacon!

Heres what I received:

Martyna sent me a lovely letter with some more info about the various items she had selected for me.

RIESTAINIAI (no English translation) – these remind me of bagels, but a little denser. Really yummy and my 3yr old has discovered a great love for them too!

DΕ½IUGAS – local Parmesan – it’s a name for a man meaning “happy”. I haven’t had chance to try this yet, but plan to use it in a cheese heavy risotto soon!

CHOCOLATE CAKES WITH COCONUT – veganand prepared at low temperature. Yummy!

DUONELES – little crackers with all sorts of loveliness including sesame seeds, super yummy with soft cheese

KISIELIUS – this powder is mixed with water to make the cranberry drink, that is served cold with sugar, whipped cream or milk. This is a traditional drink for Christmas, so I’m saving it for then!

ETNO ELFIN TEAΒ – a herbal tea suitable for children! Ingredients are caraway seeds, briar hips and lemon balm leaves. Saving this to curl up in front of the fire with tonight πŸ™‚

MEDUS – local honey with cinnamon. This is lush. Dipping the riestaniniai into it is lovely!! I discovered this at snack time today!

As you can see, what a fab box! Thanks so much to Martyna for taking the time to send such a variety. And to all foodie penpals this month GERO APETITO (cheers)!!

My dream kitchen

Today we visited Penrhyn Castle in Bangor, which have amazing Victorian kitchens…

Huge pestle & mortar –

Amazing stove with spit – it was turned by a mechanism driven by heat from the fire – now thats clever –

Cool pans! –

They also had a seperate pie oven, a pastry kitchen with cool stone worktops, a dairy larder, an amazing pre-electric fridge and LOADS of other cool stuff! If you are in the areaΒ  I highly recommend a visit πŸ™‚

 

Home grown veg for tea :-)

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Easy peasy banana ice cream

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Foodie Penpals Reveal – July 2012

I am still loving foodie penpals. What is not to love? you get to shop for people (and fun baking/cooking shopping – not boring socks/groceries type shopping!) and then you get a pressie in the post. Ace! If you want to know more about foodie penpals and sign up (which you should!) click on the logo in the left side bar πŸ™‚

This month I sent a baking inspired parcel to Lisa, and received my parcel from Catherine – check out her blog here. All I had specificed was my dislikes – bananas, sprouts, liquorice and bacon!

#1 was most intrigued as to why someone had sent me ice cream in the post πŸ˜‰ Check him out trying to nosy into shot!

Catherine is a Yorkshire lass like myself (well, I probably havent made true Yorkshire status yet as I’ve only lived here 14yrs, I think it has to be about 50 to properly count!) and she has sent me some lovely local exciting treats πŸ™‚

The ginger fudge is a long distant memory already – I am a big fudge fan, and was by myself over the weekend. Whats a girl to do?

The plantain chips are yummy, and as Catherine pointed out not banana-ery (phew!). I haven’t braved the chilli gummy sweets yet, that might be a treat for tonight!

The loose teas look really exciting, I’m looking forward to trying them and maybe doing a little taste-off once I have located a tea strainer (yay, I get to buy more kitchen gadgets!!). Or maybe have myself a posh afternoon tea with yummy tea, mini sandwiches with no crusts and some cake!

The flavours are osmanthus, liquorice rooibos (I’m a bit scared of this one as I’m not a big rooibos fan, but I’ll give it a shot!) and russian caravan.

Catherine has found Yorkshire made chorizo, and I’m most excited to try it. My plan is for a lovely paella – mmmmm, my mouth is watering just thinking about it!

Last, but certainly not least, we have homemade orange, lemon & brandy marmalade. I am a big preserves fan (as readers will know!) and this has already been used to glaze a carrot cake the boys took away camping last weekend. I’m not ashamed to admit I ate a couple of spoons of marmalade from the jar when I was doing the glaze – its yummy!

So all in all another fab parcel, what a lucky girl I am πŸ™‚ Huge thanks to Catherine for picking out such a lovely selection of treats for me!

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