Tag Archives: Family

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!

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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!

Moroccan Chickpea and Spinach Stew

I love the textures of this Moroccan spiced dish! The silky spinach, chunky butternut squash and chickpeas cooked in a delicious spicy tomato based sauce. It’s absolutely divine and works well with the cous cous and additional peas to soak up the flavours.

Ingredients

8 tomatoes

Olive oil

2 tbsp of coconut oil

2 chopped onions

3 chopped cloves of garlic

1 stick of celery finely chopped

1tsp of tumeric or freshly grated

1tsp of cinnamon

1tsp of chilli

2 handfuls of chopped butternut squash (I used frozen)

8 cubes of frozen spinach

A handful of red lentils

1 tin of chickpeas (400g)

A bunch of coriander

1lt of vegetable stock

2 cups of cous cous

1 cup of peas

Salt & pepper

Start with the tomatoes, cut in half and place on a baking tray. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast on a medium heat for 30mins until soft. Blend into a puree and set aside for the sauce.

Heat the coconut oil in a large pan, I like to use my medium cast iron oven proof pot. Add the onions, garlic and celery and cook on a medium heat for 10 minutes. Add the spices and cook gently stirring through the flavours.

Add the vegetables, lentils, chickpeas, vegetable stock and tomato sauce (made previously). Season with salt and pepper and the coriander and slow cook on a low heat for at least 30mins. I like to finish it off in the oven for 20mins.

Boil 3 cups of water in a separate pan and add the frozen peas, cook for a few minutes. Add in the cous cous, season with salt, take off the heat and add a lid to the pan. Leave for 10mins to finish the cooking process.

Serve the stew over the top of the cous cous and sprinkle with some additional coriander.

Enjoy!

Apricot Chicken & Spinach Pilaf

This delicious one pot slow cooker wonder is so easy and quick to throw together. The chicken and rice go really well with the fragrant spices, sweet apricots and velvety super green spinach. I dolloped a tablespoon of fresh live yoghurt on the top and it worked really well. Plates were empty so I’m guessing it was a hit with the kids!

I like to use chicken thigh meat because I think it has better flavour, especially from an organic chicken. You could also use chicken breast if you prefer but the breast does create a slightly drier texture. I also like to use the unsulphured dried apricots which are darker in colour and sometimes brown rice for this recipe.

You will need the following ingredients:

Ingredients

1 tbsp of coconut oil or ghee

1 finely chopped onion

4 chopped garlic cloves

2tsp of cumin seeds

2 tsp of ground coriander

2 tsp of tumeric

1 cinnamon stick

A small handful of chopped dried apricots

1 1/4 cups of basmati

3 chopped up chicken breasts or 6 chopped up thighs

700ml of vegetable stock

3 cubes of frozen spinach

Live yoghurt to serve

Set the slow cooker to high (2 -3hrs cooking time) or low (4-5 hrs cooking time) depending on the length of time you have to cook the meal. I like to prep my meals late morning or around lunchtime so that everything is ready for dinner around 5pm.

Add the coconut oil or ghee to the slow cooker and let it melt. Add in the onion, garlic, spices and chopped apricots and give it a stir around to coat everything evenly.

Add the chopped up chicken meat into the rice mixture and stir evenly to coat in the spices, apricots and rice. Add in the hot stock, frozen spinach cubes and stir once more.

Pop the lid on and leave to cook for the required time as above – high setting (2 -3hrs) or low setting (4-5hrs).

Serve with fresh greens or other seasonal vegetables and add a dollop of live yoghurt on top to serve.

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