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HelloFresh Ultimate Christmas Dinner Guide + Giveaway

HelloFresh Ultimate Christmas Dinner Guide + Giveaway


HelloFresh Christmas Dinner
I'm a bit of an organisation and list freak at Christmas (especially when it comes to Christmas lunch), but for those of you who aren't, HelloFresh can help! This year, HelloFresh have produced a very handy 'Christmas Dinner Guide' which gives information on everything you need to know about preparing for your Christmas feast, including all important timings and fail safe recipes. There's a nifty checklist on things you can do the night before, such as peel and chop the veggies, make the gravy and most importantly, make sure the turkey is defrosted! So, whether you're catering for 4 or 40, your Christmas dinner will be a success! Promise.
HelloFresh
The cheat sheets also have some lovely recipes for your Christmas classics, including the perfect roast potatoes, a yummy sounding braised red cabbage and everyone's favourite - the brussels sprout (pancetta seems to be key here!).
Roast Potatoes

ABOUT HELLOFRESH

If you haven't heard of HelloFresh, they offer seasonal, fresh meal boxes all year round, to fit in with your lifestyle. You get to decide the recipes from a weekly menu and also how many you are catering for. HelloFresh will then deliver those recipes and fresh ingredients to your door, every week, so you can cook delicious dinners of your choice. They've got recipes to suit meat eaters and vegetarians, families to couples and for low calorie diets too.

The HelloFresh chefs create new recipes every week with buckets of flavour and take between 30 and 50 minutes to cook at home. Whether you want recipes from around the world, or classics with a twist, you control what's in your box.

HelloFresh are giving you the chance to win one of their recipe boxes this Christmas. All you have to do to be in with a chance of winning is complete the Rafflecopter widget below. UK entrants over the age of 18 only please.
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. All thoughts are my own.
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Beth Sachs
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Easy Chocolate Orange Mousse

Easy Chocolate Orange Mousse


Easy Chocolate Orange Mousse
I'm usually not one to blow my own trumpet, but I have to say these chocolate orange mousses are AMAZING. So amazing in fact, I'm going to make them again for our Christmas Day dessert this year for all the pudding haters in the family (which is pretty much everyone except me and my Father in Law!). The most difficult part of the recipe is melting the chocolate, so it's a brilliant recipe to have up your sleeve whatever your level of ability in the kitchen.

I love Terry's chocolate orange, so I needed no excuses to buy a 'few' extra for recipe development purposes. However, if you can't get hold of a proper chocolate orange, you can use any other orange flavoured dark chocolate instead. Don't worry if you don't normally like dark chocolate either, because when it's been combined with the cream and condensed milk it really mellows the bitterness. My kids, who aren't massive fans of dark chocolate, gobbled them up and asked for seconds.

An added bonus with these mousses is that they are also suitable for people that can't eat raw egg....because they don't have any in.  A real winner on many levels and I know you are going to love them. We certainly do.
Easy Chocolate Orange Mousse

TOP TIPS FOR MAKING THE CHOCOLATE ORANGE MOUSSES

  • For a boozy version add a splash of orange liqueur instead of the orange juice in the recipe.
  • The recipe can be easily doubled to feed a crowd and the mousse can be served in a large dish rather than individual ramekins if you prefer. 
  • The mousses can be made up to three days ahead, perfect for the busy Christmas period.
  • For extra decadence, serve the mousses with Cornish clotted cream.

OTHER FESTIVE SWEET TREATS YOU MIGHT LIKE

Easy Chocolate Orange Mousse

EASY CHOCOLATE ORANGE MOUSSE



Yield: 6

Chocolate Orange Mousse

prep time: 15 MINScook time: total time: 15 mins
An easy, eggless, chocolate orange mousse recipe made with Terry's Chocolate Orange and condensed milk.

ingredients:


  • 157g Terry's Dark Chocolate Orange, broken into segments
  • 175g Condensed Milk
  • 250ml Double Cream
  • 2 TSP Freshly Squeezed Orange Juice
  • Chocolate Orange Segments and Icing Sugar to serve

instructions:


  1. Place the chocolate in a large microwaveable bowl and melt in the microwave (I cook for 30 seconds then stir and repeat until it's melted).
  2. Place the condensed milk and double cram in a large bowl and whisk (I used a handheld electric whisk) until soft peaks form.
  3. Stir 1/3 of the cream into the cooled chocolate mixture and stir then gradually fold the chocolate cream into the whipped cream mixture before adding in the orange juice.
  4. Spoon into 6 ramekins and chill for 1 hour (or up to 3 days). Serve with a segment of chocolate orange and a dusting of icing sugar.


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Easy No Egg Chocolate Orange Mousse
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Beth Sachs
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Enjoy A Yummy Christmas With M&S

Enjoy A Yummy Christmas With M&S


Enjoy A Yummy Christmas With M&S #mandsxmas17
 I collected a gorgeous hamper to review from my local M&S last week, full of products from their yummy Christmas range. Read on to find out what we thought....

SALTED CARAMEL PINECONES

Salted Caramel Pinecones
The kids absolutely loved these cute salted caramel pinecones and have instructed me to go and buy some more. They would make good grown up sweet treats at a Christmas drinks party too, so I might buy a few extra just for the adults.

CHOCOLATE COATED SALTED CARAMEL COOKIES

M&S Cookies
All butter salted caramel flavour cookies with crunchy caramel flavour pieces and Belgian milk chocolate chunks, half coated in milk chocolate. A lovely all rounder, perfect with a mug of hot chocolate by the fire after a long winter walk.

CHOCOLATE COATED GINGERBREAD LATTE COOKIES

Chocolate Coated Gingerbread Latte Cookies
All butter ginger spiced cookies with rich brazillian coffee, white and dark chocolate chunks and half coated in dark chocolate. These more grown up cookies would be ideal to take into the office this festive season to enjoy with your morning cuppa. It's up to you whether you want to share them with your colleagues.

CLEMENTINE & CRANBERRY SPARKLING COCKTAIL

Bucks Fizz
A fruity sparkling cocktail with flavours of citrus and berry fruit. At only 4% alcohol volume, it would make the ideal drink to serve with your Christmas Day breakfast (we usually have scrambled eggs with smoked salmon here but this year we're going sweet with some Cinnamon and Clementine Rolls made in my breadmaker).

SMOKED SALMON, CREAM CHEESE & CHAMPAGNE CRISPS AND BLOODY MARY HANDCOOKED CRISPS

M&S Crisps
Who doesn't love a posh crisp at Christmas and M&S have certainly delivered on this front. The Bloody Mary handcooked crisps are particularly stunning, made with Highland Burgundy Red British potatoes and seasoned with tomato, Worcestershire sauce and the all important vodka.

THICK CUT PADDINGTON BEAR MARMALADE

Paddington Bear Marmalade
Thanks to a new movie and his starring role in the M&S Christmas campaign, Paddington is more recognisable than ever this year! M&S have released this limited edition jar of Thick Cut Paddington Marmalade which would make a lovely stocking filler for any Paddington fans out there. The M&S website also has lots of recipe ideas for the marmalade, including the gorgeous sounding extra sticky marmalade glazed camembert!

Disclosure: I was given these products for review purposes. All thoughts are my own.

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Beth Sachs
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Stokes Real Mayonnaise + Win a Foodie Trip to Greece

Stokes Real Mayonnaise + Win a Foodie Trip to Greece


Stokes Sauces Real Mayo
Stokes like their food simple, good and delicious and they make their sauces that way too. Unique recipes prepared in small batches with top quality ingredients. Like Tomato Ketchup made with juicy Italian tomatoes, creamy Real Mayonnaise made with extra virgin olive oil and free range eggs, and a traditional British Brown Sauce built on a healthy splash of real date puree.

Founded in 2004 by Rick Sheepshanks, today Stokes Sauces employs over 40 people producing over 75 different lines, all hand produced to carefully created and closely guarded recipes in their Suffolk "Saucery".  

Mayonnaise was the first of the Stokes product range that Rick decided to perfect because other mayonnaise's just didn't deliver the quality he sought. "With a mere handful of simple ingredients to deal with, why do people get it so wrong."

Ingredients. That's it! There are so few, if the quality of just one fails, the whole thing fails.

Start with the eggs. Stokes found a producer farming high Welfare Standard British Free Range hens whose eggs are perfect and can be delivered to meet their strict regime of hygiene and quality.

Dijon Mustard - even easier ... they make our own (which is pretty darn good judging by the quality of the mayo).


Salt - after much testing of many varieties of salt, they decided that only the best would do. So, without compromise, they import salt from the Dead Sea which is natural, full of flavour yet without the harmful effects of sodium.

Finally the oil - a story in itself.....


The majority of the oil they use is British, from British Oil Seed Rape, which paints the fields with a glorious sunshine yellow in May and June. Great though this is, Rick felt on its own it wasn't enough. It made a really good mayonnaise ... just not a great one. They needed to add extra virgin olive oil (or EVOO) to make it great. Another huge challenge because there are so many of them. Spanish? Italian? Greek? And within all of these - which?

Which olives? Which island? Which hillside? Which producer?
Olives
They quickly decided on Greece, tried over 30 different EVOOs in hundreds of different ratio permutations of extra virgin to rapeseed oil. Eventually, they got it right and then quite literally stumbled on the producer in Crete who gave it just that edge. 3,000 years of history and its abundance on the hillsides of Crete can't be wrong - and nor were they.

Adding 5% Cretan Koroneiki extra virgin olive oil to the mayonnaise made it good enough to call it Stokes Real Mayonnaise.


And so Stokes Real Mayo was born...and it's just like homemade (in fact it's even better)!
Stokes Sauces

WIN A FOODIE TRIP TO GREECE WITH STOKES MAYO

The Greeks consider the koroneiki olive to be the “queen of olives”. Although not good for snacking due to their bitterness, they produce a lush, velvety, dark green oil with a satisfyingly smooth flavour. Once the Stokes team had tried Greek extra virgin koroneiki olive oil in their recipe, nothing else would do.
As an added bonus, the koroneiki olive trees are incredibly beautiful. They have two-tone leaves - light and dark green - and one tree can produce both green and purple olives simultaneously. A grove of koroneiki olive trees with a breeze rippling through them is a truly stunning sight.
If you would like to see these trees for yourself, and to find out exactly how special the extra virgin olive oil is, just enter Stokes Sauces simple competition. The first prize is a three day trip for two foodies to Crete, including a personal guided tour to a koroneiki olive grove. There are also ten runners-up prizes of luxury Stokes hampers.
Stokes Sauces
It's not just about the mayo at Stokes Sauces though! They have an amazing range of other ketchups and sauces including 5 types of ketchup (the curry ketchup sound's amazing), 3 varieties of BBQ sauce, a sweet chilli sauce, salad dressings galore, traditional condiments such as cranberry sauce and redcurrant jelly as well as an abundance of relishes and pickles.

The good news is they are now available at Sainsbury's, Waitrose, Ocado, Booths and all good independent stores, farm shops and deli's. Their products can also be ordered directly from their website.

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. I received a hamper of Stokes Sauces and was compensated for writing this post. All thoughts are my own.
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Beth Sachs
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Microwave Mince Pie Fudge

Microwave Mince Pie Fudge


Microwave Mince Pie Fudge
An easy edible gift for Christmas, this mince pie fudge is made entirely in the microwave. Perfect for last minute gifts (you know the scenario, new neighbours turn up with a tin of chocolates and you've got to reciprocate pretty quickly) and also the perfect addition to a homemade festive hamper. It's a handy recipe to have tucked away and great for using up a half opened jar of mincemeat.

I'd never made fudge in the microwave before, but now I know how easy it is, I'm going to experiment. Next on the list to try is boozy chocolate orange fudge...one of my favourite Christmassy flavour combinations. If you're giving the fudge away as a gift, just pop it into clear cellophane bags once it's completely set and tie with a pretty ribbon. Alternatively, just scoff it all yourself! It is Christmas after all.
Microwave Mince Pie Fudge

TOP TIPS FOR MAKING MICROWAVE FUDGE

  • I've given instructions for making the fudge in a 900 watt microwave. Times would need to be adjusted if your microwave is a different wattage.
  • Instead of mincemeat you could try adding dried cranberries and chopped pecan nuts or, for a boozy fudge add 2 TBSP of Bailey's. 
  • The fudge needs to be left to set for 2 hours before cutting. It may still be a bit soft after this time but will firm up a bit more after cutting into cubes. 
  • The fudge needs to be eaten within 3 weeks.

OTHER FESTIVE SWEET TREATS YOU MIGHT LIKE

Microwave Mince Pie Fudge

MICROWAVE MINCE PIE FUDGE


Yield: 4 gift portions

Microwave Mince Pie Fudge

prep time: 20 MINScook time: total time: 20 mins
An easy microwave Christmas fudge recipe using mincemeat.

ingredients:


  • 400g Caster Sugar
  • 397g Tin of Condensed Milk
  • 140g Butter, cubed
  • 1 TSP Vanilla Extract
  • 3 TBSP Mincemeat

instructions:


  1. Grease and line a 20cm square tin.
  2. Place the sugar, condensed milk and butter in a large microwaveable bowl. Microwave on high for 16 minutes (or until the mixture turns a caramel colour) stirring every 2 minutes. Make sure the bowl is large as the mixture has a habit of spilling over.
  3. Add the vanilla extract and mix in then stir through the mincemeat. Pour into the prepared tin and leave to set for 2 hours (do not put in the fridge).
  4. Once cooled, carefully lift the fudge out of the tin using the baking paper and cut into small cubes. The fudge will still be quite sticky at this point but will firm up within an hour or so. Place in an airtight tin or gift bags.
Created using The Recipes Generator

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Microwave Mince Pie Fudge
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Beth Sachs
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Crispy Christmas Tree Lollipops

Crispy Christmas Tree Lollipops


Crispy Christmas Tree Lollipops
So, hands up, who's finished their Christmas shopping? I almost have (just two more presents to collect, which I've already ordered) so there's just the wrapping left to do here (boo).... that will be a fun day! I try and be as organised as possible and get everything sorted before the start of December so the kids and I can enjoy some festive holiday baking, crafting and days out without the stress of buying and wrapping presents still on my mind. I'm also working right up to the 20th so I don't have much time to do anything after that, unless I want to drag 3 children around the shops with me (no thank-you).

These Crispy Christmas Tree Lollies are one of the recipes we like to make over Christmas.The kids love getting creative with the decorations so we raid our local supermarket cake decorating aisle before we start. Sprinkles, mini smarties, dragees and edible glitter are all used with copious amounts of icing! It's a fun festive rainy day activity for kids of all ages. Enjoy!
Crispy Christmas Tree Lollipops

TOP TIPS FOR MAKING THE CHRISTMAS TREE LOLLIES

  • We used a natural green food colouring for these crispy lollies but if you wanted a stronger green colour I'd advise using a gel colouring which will give a more vibrant, brighter green.
  • The lollies will keep for up to 3 days in an airtight container and would be fine to freeze too.
  • Perhaps leave one of these out for Santa on Christmas Eve instead of the traditional mince pie.

OTHER FESTIVE SWEET TREATS YOU MIGHT LIKE

Crispy Christmas Tree Lollipops

CRISPY CHRISTMAS TREE LOLLIES


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Crispy Christmas Tree Lollies

CRISPY CHRISTMAS TREE LOLLIES

The kids will love making, decorating and eating these crispy Christmas Tree lollies made with puffed rice cereal.
Ingredients
  • 9 tea cups Puffed Rice Cereal
  • 9 tea cups Marshmallows
  • 95g Butter
  • Green Food Colouring, Decorations, Icing Tubes and Wooden Lolly Sticks
Instructions
Step 1: Line 2 20cm round tins with baking paper.Step 2: Put the marshmallows and butter in a large microwaveable bowl and melt (I do 10-15 second bursts and stir each time).Step 3: Let the mixture cool slightly then add the puffed rice cereal and green food colouring. Stir until combinedStep 4: Spoon the mixture into the prepared tins and press down firmly. Pop the tins into the fridge to set for at least 2 hours before before cutting into triangles, pushing the lolly sticks in the bottom and decorating with your icing and sprinkles of choice.

Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time:
Yield: makes 16 tree lollies


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Crispy Christmas Tree Lollipops
Disclosure: I was asked by An Elf for Christmas to develop a festive recipe. I received an Elf for Christmas in return.
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Beth Sachs
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