Easy Preserved Lemons

These Preserved Lemons are quite possibly the easiest preserving recipe I have made to date. They are absolutely delicious and I love using preserved lemons in tagines, roast chickens or sliced into thin slices for the top of a fresh seasonal salad. They originated in the Middle East and Mediterranean regions but are now popular throughout the world.

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Creamy Leek Cheese and Walnut Tart

My son sat down at the kitchen table the other night, took one look at his plate and shouted ‘I hate quiche!’ , I said that’s ok I know you do but its not quiche its tart, ‘try a little and leave the rest if you don’t like it’…ten minutes later his plate was licked clean and he was requesting more!

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The Best Crispy Duck & Seasonal Slaw

This is just the best combination for a delicious weekend lunch or as a light evening meal with a few baby potatoes. The crispy duck goes really well with my seasonal slaw of celeriac, brussel sprouts and apple

It is cooked simply in the cast iron pan in butter and seasoned lightly with salt and pepper, it really doesn’t require much else to taste delicious. The skin is crisped slowly in the pan and finished off in the oven with a short period of rest afterwards before slicing.

The crunchy slaw is drizzled in a dressing made of mustard, raw honey (for that additional health boost), olive oil and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.

You could add a drizzle of sauce and perhaps a red currant or other tart fruity sauce would be delicious here and it would make it slightly more photogenic also but I ask that you try the simplicity of this dish first and I’m sure you will enjoy it!

I really hope you enjoy this crispy duck recipe, it certainly is a new favourite for me!

Love

Seasonal Slaw Recipe

Celeriac (approx 200g)

Brussel sprouts (approx 200g)

Sweet Apples x 2 med

1/4 cup of olive oil

1tsp of mustard

1tsp of honey (preferably raw)

A squeeze of a fresh lemon

Salt and pepper

2 tbsp of chopped walnuts

You can add more veg and apples to increase the quantity.

Slice the celeriac up in chunky pieces, peel the first layers off the sprouts and cut the apple into chunky pieces also.

Run the celeriac, sprouts and apple through the food processor to shred.

Combine the olive oil, mustard, honey, lemon and salt and pepper in a glass and whisk to combine. Adjust the ingredients in the dressing to suit your own tastes if you prefer.

Drizzle over the slaw and mix through, add in the chopped walnuts for extra crunch.

Duck Recipe

Duck breasts with skin

25g of salted butter

Salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 160oc and melt the butter in the cast iron pan on a medium heat.

Season the duck breasts skin side down generously on each side and place into the heated pan, bring the heat up a little gradually and cook for a few minutes each side.

Place the breasts into an oven proof dish and cook for a further 10 mins.

Leave to rest for 5 minutes and slice and serve immediately alongside the slaw.

This dish is best eaten in the colder months and with locally grown organic ingredients if you can source them. It’s great to support smaller businesses and I would highly recommend a visit to your local farmers market or farm shop if you have one.

Review – The Berry Company

I am always on the lookout for something new and nutritious for the family and I love these drinks by The Berry Company. They are one of our favourite UK brands at the moment and they use such a huge variety of nutritious berries in their juice blends.

They went down well with the kids, especially at breakfast time and its great to know they are getting something with such awesome ingredients to drink at this time of day.

These are a selection of my faves above! I love the Superberries one, it tasted so good in a smoothie. You can find the ingredients at https://theberrycompany.co.uk/flavours/superberries-purple

I tried a few different recipes with these drinks but to be honest they work best served straight in a glass with ice or diluted with water. They do work well in smoothies though and are really nice gently warmed with a few spices for a cold winters night drink.

They also have a delicious selection of their own cocktail recipes which do work well with alcohol free gin too! https://theberrycompany.co.uk/our-recipes

You can find them at Holland and Barrett, Ocado, Waitrose and most of these places even deliver from their online stores.

Our delicious juice blends our now all made from natural ingredients, without added sugar or any added sweeteners. We continue to pride ourselves on sourcing the best and most exotic ingredients and botanicals from around the world that deliver light and balanced flavours, full of taste and goodness. The Berry Company Website

https://theberrycompany.co.uk/

They also have no added sugar, are suitable for vegans and are free from any additional artificial ingredients.

These products were gifted and these are my own personal opinions.

Sticky Toffee Apple Pudding

The New Year is here and many of us are hitting the gym and pounding the streets with new trainers and sports gear….

…meanwhile I’m in the kitchen creating delicious full fat hearty puddings for the family drizzled in toffee sauce and lashings of thick fresh cream! Oops!

I do promise some healthier winter recipes are on their way but in the meantime please enjoy a slice of this divine Sticky Toffee Apple Pudding with some thick cream.

This pudding is certainly a well deserved treat in the cold winter months. We were out in the garden planning and plotting our growing adventures for this year and it was super cold.

I left the family defrosting by the fire and rustled up a delicious lunch of pan fried duck breast with a side of seasonal slaw and for a treat we had this delicious sticky toffee apple cake drizzled in toffee sauce and cream to warm everyone up. It’s fair to say it went down well with the kids!

I have used organic ingredients in this recipe but you can use non organic if you desire. Its important to use the golden caster sugar if you can source it as I think the flavour is better for the purpose of this recipe.

Ingredients

Toffee Sauce

125g of unsalted butter

60g of golden caster sugar

60g of muscovado sugar

200ml of thick double cream

Pudding Batter

60g of unsalted butter

80g of golden caster sugar

70g of muscavado

2 medium eggs

180g of plain flour

1tsp of baking powder

1tsp of bicarbonate of soda

1tsp of cinnamon

1tsp of ground cloves

1/2tsp of salt

200g of grated apple (2 med apples)

90g of chopped walnuts

Heat the oven to 180 and butter a suitable baking dish.

Add all the sauce ingredients into a small saucepan and gently heat through until the butter has melted.

Bring to a bubbling boil and stir for around five minutes or until the sauce has thickened enough to stick to the spoon or whisk.

Pour half of the sauce into your buttered baking dish and leave to cool while you make the cake.

Beat together the butter and the sugars, then add the eggs to the mixture and continue to beat together until it is all well combined.

Sift the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, cinnamon, cloves and salt into the mixture and mix again to blend together. Add in the grated apple and the chopped walnuts and mix together gently.

Spoon all of the mixture into the baking dish on top of the sauce and bake in the oven for around 45 minutes or until a knife inserted into the hot cake comes out clean.

Make many holes in the top of the pudding with a fork and pour the remaining sauce over the top of the pudding. Leave to soak into the cake for a few minutes and then serve in squares with extra cream on the top.

Enjoy!

Luxury Smoked Salmon Christmas Wreath

This delicious smoked salmon salad platter served with an onion cream cheese spread would make the perfect centerpiece of a nibble spread for guests, a delicious Christmas day starter or even a late Christmas Day brunch.

It looks very impressive on the table but it is soooo simple to make and very quick to put together. The combination of ingredients and flavours really work well together and are delicious served on slices of warm crusty bread.

I have used high quality thinly sliced Scottish (of course!) smoked salmon for this dish. The quality is important if you want the flavours just right.

Sprinkled throughout the wreath are bite sized chunks of crunchy cucumbers, ripe avocado chunks, chopped cherry tomatoes, red onion and garnished with spring onions and dill.

I served the wreath up with lemon slices for squeezing on the top and my creamy onion flavoured cream cheese spread. It is absolutely delicious eaten with crusty bread spread with the cream cheese and topped with pieces of salmon and salad.

The ingredient quantities are variable so I’ve based it on what I used to serve my family a small starter portion. So this would feed roughly 4-5 as a nibble or starter. Simply increase if you are serving more.

Ingredients

Salmon Wreath

Smoked salmon slices – about a 400g pack

Half cucumber – quartered length ways then sliced

Half an avocado – scooped whole, sliced then cut into similar sized pieces as the cucmber.

Half a red onion – sliced thinly, then cut into four again

Cherry tomatoes (about 200g) – quartered

2 Spring Onions – Slice thinly

2 tbsp of Dill – chop finely

2 lemons

Cream cheese

1 small tub of cream cheese

Half a red onion, grated or finely chopped

Dill

A squeeze of lemon

Salt and pepper

Crusty bread slices

Split the smoked salmon slices into smaller pieces and display around the plate in a circular fashion. Add the cucumber, avocado, red onion, and cherry tomatoes spread out around the wreath to create a good balance of colour. Sprinkle over the chopped dill and spring onion and season lightly with salt and pepper. Remember it will be quite salty already due to the smoked salmon. Quarter the lemons and display in the middle around the bowl of cream cheese (recipe below).

Empty the cream cheese into a large bowl and add in the grated onion, chopped dill, a squeeze of lemon and season with salt and pepper. Mix well and transfer to a small bowl. Position this bowl in the center of the wreath and arrange the lemon pieces around it.

We spread some slices of the crusty bread with the cream cheese and topped off with pieces from the wreath.

Enjoy!

Hazelnut & Chocolate Stollen

This version of the traditional Christmas Stollen is absolutely delicious!

If you make just one thing this Christmas let it be this ‘Chocolate & Hazelnut Stollen’ bake filled with the colourful sweetness of cranberries, apricots, chocolate chips and the delicious blend of Christmas spices.

We enjoyed a slice of this warm with some delicious warmed spice apple juice. It’s so quick to pop on this delicious warming drink while you wait for the dough to rise and it makes the perfect accompaniment with a slice of Stollen by the fire. I have included the recipe below for you.

Spiced Apple Juice Recipe

4 liters of apple juice

1 sliced apple

1 handful of dried cranberries

2 cinnamon sticks or 4tsp of cinnamon

2 tsp of ground cloves

2 tsp of allspice

Pour all of the juice into a huge pot, I love my huge cast iron pot for this with the lid. Add all the spices, apples and cranberries and adjust to your tastes. Simmer for an hr or so and leave on a low heat to serve all evening.

This lasted us a few nights but you could also half the recipe. Its also important to use good quality pressed apple juice instead of concentrate which tends to be too sweet.

Stollen Recipe

100g of dried cranberries

30g of chopped hazelnuts

50g of dried chopped apricots

200ml of warm apple juice (you can use the drink above too, it works really well just make sure its not too hot)

1tbsp of dried yeast

250g of strong white flour (an additional 50g when fruit is added)

2tsp of cinnamon

2tsp of allspice

1/2tsp of ground cloves

80g of chocolate chips

10g of coconut oil

2tbsp of icing sugar

100g of chocolate chips (for melting)

Soak the dried cranberries, hazelnuts and dried apricots in 100ml of hot water and set aside (you can increase the quantities of fruit if you prefer it sweeter).

Add the warm apple juice to a small jug and sprinkle in the dried yeast. Stir gently and set aside to bubble and activate for 15-20mins.

Add the flour, cinnamon, allspice, cloves and coconut oil and mix together. I use the dough hook on my kitchen aid for creating the dough but you can, as described in this recipe, knead by hand.

Once the yeast has been left to activate add it into the flour and spices in the bowl. Mix together to create a smooth dough, adjusting the flour or adding a little water if necessary. You should have a relatively non sticky dough which can be handled without feeling too sticky in your hands. If its too sticky add a little extra flour.

Remove the dough from the bowl for kneading. Add a little vegetable oil to your hands to reduce sticking whilst kneading. Knead for 10 minutes until completely smooth and pliable.

Place in a bowl which has been lightly oiled and cover with a clean dish towel and leave to rise somewhere warm for one hour.

Remove from the bowl again. Drain the soaked dried fruit, nuts and chocolate chips and add to the dough. You might need some additional flour at this point so that the dough doesn’t become sticky due to the extra moisture. Knead for a further 10mins.

Leave to rise again for another hour in the same warm place.

Shape into a rounded loaf shape and bake at 180oc for 30-40minutes or until lightly brown and when tapped on the bottom it should sound hollow.

Leave to cool on a wire cooling rack for around half an hour.

Add the icing sugar into a small bowl with a little water to create a thick but runny paste. You can either paste this onto the whole top of the loaf and finish with a dusting of icing sugar or you can drizzle it as I have in the image above.

Melt the chocolate and drizzle across the loaf. Sprinkle with some additional chopped hazelnuts and slice to serve.

Enjoy!

Christmas Nibble Board

Christmas nibbles…ah!…so many happy memories of our family nibble platters at Christmas time!

I’ve seen many a delicious plate of nibbles in my day, from the excitement of my Mum and Dad bringing out our faves at Christmas to visiting Grandma and Grandad at Hogmany and feasting on scrummy hot nibbles all night when we were wee and then to us as parents ourselves bringing out warm plates of nibbles to our own excited kids!

There’s been many a happy memory around food in our household at Christmas young and old.

I made this somewhat healthier version of a nibble platter to feed the kids the day we collected the Christmas tree, because who has time to prepare huge meals when your all singing Christmas songs and decorating the tree with twinkling lights.

I used fresh fruits, vegetables, homemade crumbly feta almond cheese, sticky mango and sweet chilli sausage bowls and mushroom based sausage rolls. Yummy!

It’s super easy to prepare and assemble and you can of course vary the ingredients loads.

Ingredients

Sliced fruit and vegetables of choice

Vegetarian/vegan sausages

Vegetarian/vegan sausage rolls

Crispbreads for spreading

Crisps

Mango chutney

Sesame seeds

Sweet Chilli sauce

Chopped Spring onions

Cranberry sauce

Black olives

Sun dried tomatoes

Almond Feta Ingredients

2 cups of whole almonds

1 shallot or half a red onion chopped

2 chopped garlic cloves

1 lemon

1-2tbsp of plain yogurt (I used coconut) (optional)

Salt & pepper

Almond Feta Recipe

Soak the almonds in boiling hot water in a bowl for a couple of hours and peel off the skins. Pop the peeled almonds into the blender. Add the chopped onion or shallot, garlic, the juice of 1 lemon, yogurt if using, salt and pepper.

Blend in a high powered blender until completely smooth and taste, adjusting the seasonings as necessary. Add a little water if necessary too. You should have a really thick ‘stick to the spoon’ paste texture.

Lay out a muslin flat on the counter and spoon out the almond mixture onto the muslin. Wrap up into a tight ball and squeeze out the excess liquid over the sink. Tie a knot and hang into a jug, place in the fridge over night. If you don’t have time just squeeze out as much liquid as possible and then shape into a ball. Place in a glass dish and bake at 160 for 30mins or until golden and crispy on the outside.

Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with chopped herbs, sun dried tomatoes or olives etc. Serve with thin crispbreads or oatcakes.

Sticky Sausages Recipe

Cook the vegetarian sausages on a medium heat in the oven. Split into two bowls, coat one batch in mango chutney and the other in sweet chilli sauce. Serve in two small bowls, sprinkle sesame seeds over the mango sausages and spring onions over the sweet chilli ones.

Lay the cheese and sausages out on a chopping board and display the sliced vegetables all around the bowls to make it all look pretty and edible.

Enjoy!

Spicy Bean & Vegetable Curry

This is my fave spicy curry recipe and it’s so quick and easy to make. I love the blend of freshly grated tomatoes, spices and chillies to make the sauce and the fluffy basmati base soaking up all of the delicious flavours. I have made this recipe spicy as I like hot food but you can adjust it to your tastes by adjusting the chilli quantity.

I love to serve my curry up with some fermented foods, pickles, sauces etc. These are great for dipping any additional elements like poppadoms and naan bread in. In this recipe I have used the fermented ‘Tumeric and Black Pepper Kimchi’. It’s the perfect addition to this dish for taste and of course for the numerous health benefits that fermented foods may have.

I hope you enjoy this recipe!

Ingredients

4 tbsp of Coconut Oil

1tsp of mustard seeds

1 tsp of cumin seeds

a pinch of asafetida

6 medium tomatoes grated (or blend in a small blender)

1/2 tsp of tumeric powder

1 tsp of ground coriander

1 tsp of ground cumin

3 fresh sliced hot green chillies (adjust for more or less heat!)

2 finely chopped cloves of garlic

1 tsp of grated fresh ginger

1 tsp of sugar

1 tsp of salt

2 tsp of coconut oil

A selection of sliced fresh vegetables

A tin of beans of choice, kidney beans work really well!

Heat the coconut oil on a medium heat in a large flat pan, I use my large flat cast iron casserole pan. Once the oil has melted add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds and asafetida. When the mustard seeds start popping add in the fresh tomatoes. Stir, then add in the tumeric powder, ground coriander, ground cumin, chillies, garlic, ginger, sugar and salt. Leave simmering on a low heat.

Heat up the coconut oil in another pan and add in the sliced vegetables, beans and cook on a medium heat for 10 minutes. Season and then add into the simmering curry sauce. Cook gently for 20 minutes and serve with freshly cooked basmati rice. I use my pressure cooker settings for fluffy white basmati rice, a rice cooker works well too.

Serve up with pickles, sauces, breads and poppadom. Enjoy!

If you enjoyed this recipe you can add your email below to be kept up to date with the release of future delicious recipes!

Love Angie x

Christmas Tree Wholemeal Spelt Rolls

These fluffy rolls are perfect served alongside the ‘Creamy mushroom & chestnut pate’. Serve them freshly baked, warm out of the oven and pour the drizzle over just as your about to eat them. Delicious!

Recipe – Creamy Mushroom & Chestnut Pate

Ingredients

2tbsp of dried yeast

750ml warm almond milk

50g of coconut oil

950g of wholemeal spelt flour

2tsp of salt

1/2 finely chopped red onion

2 finely chopped garlic

1/2 cup of olive oil

Finely chopped rosemary (or other chopped herbs)

Mix the yeast, warm almond milk and coconut oil together in a large bowl and leave for 15mins. Sift the flour and salt into the bowl. Stir together until a dough forms, adding a little extra flour or milk to create a non sticky dough. I love to use the dough hook on my kitchen aid to form the dough and for the kneading but hands work just as well.

Remove and knead the dough for 10 minutes on a floured surface. Return the dough to the bowl and cover with a clean tea towel. Leave to rise for one hour in a warm place.

Tip the dough back out onto the floured work surface and knead it again. Split the dough in half and keep splitting until you have around 26 small pieces.

Place some of them out onto a greased baking tray in the shape of your choice. I decided on a Christmas tree shape. Leave to rise again for 20minutes.

Bake at 200oc for 20-25mins. Meanwhile fry the onion and garlic in the olive oil on a gentle heat until soft. Set aside for drizzling.

Remove rolls and add the drizzle to serve. Best enjoyed immediately. Enjoy!

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