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Blog Archive

Giveaway: Cornishware Dreadnought Jugs



Cornishware was first produced in the 1920's by T.G Green in Derbyshire and has since become a British design classic with its famous blue and white stripes (they also now do red and white stripes). It's said that the colours reminded a T.G Green employee of the blue skies and white crested waves of Cornwall - can't argue there! They have a seriously huge range from plates, bowls, mugs, jugs, jars and egg cups to name just a few items - and the range really can take you from breakfast through to dinner and beyond.
Cornishware have kindly given me 2 lovely Dreadnought Jugs (1 large and 1 small) to giveaway to one Jam and Clotted Cream reader so if you want to be in with a chance of winning just read on....

To enter:
To win the jugs all you need to do is;
1. Complete the Rafflecopter widget below to verify your entries
2. Entries can be via blog comment, Twitter, Facebook etc
3. Closing Date 6th February 05:01 am
4. UK entrants only

For more information on how to enter blog giveaways using Rafflecopter please see this short video.

Please remember you need to complete the mandatory entry first - which is a blog comment.

Rafflecopter will tweet, like and follow on your behalf. For information on finding the URL of your tweet please see this.

Good luck




Beth Sachs
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Meal Plan 30th January - 5th February 2012


Here is what we will be eating in the Jam and Clotted Cream house this week. Lunches will be wraps or pasta salad.

Monday 30th January:
Spanish Style Chicken and Chorizo Stew

Tuesday 31st January:
Harissa Spiced Lamb Chops and Veggie Rice

Wednesday 1st February:
Mushroom and Bacon Penne

Thursday 2nd February:
Prawn Pilau

Friday 3rd February:
Tamarind Beef Stir Fry

Saturday 4th February:
Frittata and Chips

Sunday 5th February:
Sticky Sausage and Red Onion Wraps with Salad

Beth Sachs
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Fish is the Dish Challenge 4: Haddock Curry


Haddock Curry

When I mentioned Haddock Curry on Twitter I got a few 'urghs' from people....but what you have to think here is kedgeree. Curry and white fish really do work amazingly well together- try this you will be convinced I promise!

So, in this latest Fish is the Dish pack we received some lovely North Sea haddock fillets from Delish Fish based in Scotland. The fillets come individually vacuum packed which really helps with quantity control! I used the curry recipe that was provided to us in the pack, but changed the method slightly to make it quicker and easier to put together. Because the haddock cooks so quickly it really is a 20 minute meal so perfect for a weeknight!

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Haddock Curry
serve with rice and naan bread
Ingredients
  • Glug of Olive Oil
  • 1 Onion, sliced
  • 2 Garlic Cloves, chopped
  • 1 Red Chili, chopped
  • Thumb size piece of ginger, peeled and grated
  • 4 TBSP Tikka Masala Paste
  • Tin of Coconut Milk
  • 900g Haddock Fillets, cut into chunks
  • Small handful Coriander, chopped
Instructions
Step 1: Fry the onion, garlic, chili and ginger in large pan (with a lid) for 7 minutes.Step 2: Add in the curry paste and coconut milk and bring to a simmer.Step 3; Add in the fish then cover and cook for 5 minutes.Step 4: Season and sprinkle over coriander.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 4 Portions
Beth Sachs
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Spicy Carrot, Sweet Potato and Coconut Soup


Spicy Carrot and Sweet Potato Soup

I didn't expect much from this soup but it really packed a punch and I've been enjoying it for lunch this week as per the weekly meal plan. Baking the sweet potatoes in the oven before adding the soft flesh to the soup really helped with both the flavour and texture but it was the coconut milk that made it lovely and silky. The green chili (which I didn't de-seed before using) gave it a heady kick, but if you don't like a lot of heat you can just leave it out, or use half a de-seeded chili instead.


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Spicy Carrot, Sweet Potato and Coconut Soup
A winter warmer
Ingredients
  • 4 Sweet Potatoes, halved and flesh scored
  • 1 Onion, chopped
  • 1 Green Chili, chopped (I left the seeds in for added heat)
  • 2 Cloves of Garlic, chopped
  • 300g Carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 Litre Vegetable Stock
  • 1 Tin of Coconut Milk
  • Salt and Pepper
Instructions
Step 1: Preheat the oven to 200c/180fan and place the sweet potatoes on a baking tray. Put in the oven and bake for about 30 minutes until flesh is soft. Scoop the flesh out and set aside.Step 2: While the potatoes are baking you can get on with making the base of the soup. In a large pan, gently fry the onions, garlic, chili and carrots until soft - about 10 minutes.Step 3: Add the stock and sweet potato flesh and bring to a simmer. Finally add the tin of coconut milk, cook for a few minutes before blitzing with a stick blender to make it silky smooth
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 4 bowls
Beth Sachs
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Giveaway: Traditional Scottish Cheeseboard


COMPETITION CLOSED

We'll be enjoying a traditional Scottish cheeseboard with out Burns Night Supper on Wednesday and Mull of Kintyre are kindly providing another cheeseboard to giveaway to one Jam and Clotted Cream reader.

The prize includes:
A slate engraved cheeseboard not available in the shops (not shown in photo)
Mull of Kintyre Scottish Mature Cheddar
Mull of Kintyre Scottish Extra Mature Cheddar
Scottish Oatcakes
Traditional Chutney

To enter:
To win the cheeseboard all you need to do is;
1. Complete the Rafflecopter widget below to verify your entries
2. Entries can be via blog comment, Twitter, Facebook etc
3. Closing Date 31st January 05:01 am
4. UK entrants only

For more information on how to enter blog giveaways using Rafflecopter please see this short video.

Please remember you need to complete the mandatory entry first - which is a blog comment.

Rafflecopter will tweet, like and follow on your behalf. For information on finding the URL of your tweet please see this.

Good luck

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Beth Sachs
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Creme Brulée


Creme Brulee

I received lots of lovely foodie related gifts for my birthday last week, but the cooks blow torch and 4 Portmerion creme brulée dishes were top of my list. I'd never attempted creme brulee's before, partly because I lacked the necessary blow torch (you wouldn't get the same effect under a grill) and partly because I 'thought' it was complicated. As it turns out it really wasn't.

On Saturday I set about making the creme brulée's and what I ended up with was one of the most wonderful creamy desserts I had ever tasted. Delicately flavoured with vanilla and with the all important crunchy sugar crust. The beauty with these is that you can make them (barring caramelising the crust) up to a day before and store them in the fridge until needed. When you're  ready to serve just pull out your blow torch to caramelise the sugary crust.

Now I've cracked Creme Brulée's I'm wondering what else I can use my blow torch for. Suggestions most welcome as I'm struggling for idea's - food related please!



Creme Brulée

A luxurious creamy dessert

Ingredients

  • 5 Egg Yolks (large)
  • 55g Caster Sugar
  • 426ml Double Cream
  • 100ml Full Cream Milk
  • 1 Vanilla Pod, halved and seeds scraped out
  • Extra Sugar for sprinkling on top

Instructions


  • Step 1: Preheat oven to 180c/160fan.
  • Step 2: Whisk together the egg yolks and sugar for 1 minute with an electric whisk and set aside.
  • Step 3: Put the cream, milk and vanilla seeds into a pan and put on the hob over a medium heat. As soon as you see bubbles forming take the cream mixture off the heat.
  • Step 4: Set a sieve above the whisked egg yolks and sugar and pour the cream through it.
  • Step 5: There will be a layer of foam so use a large metal spoon to scoop it off.
  • Step 6: Pour the mixture into a large jug and set aside while you prepare the tin. Place 4 x 175ml ramekins in a large deep roasting tray and pour in hot water from the tap so it comes about 1cm up the outside of the ramekins.
  • Step 7: Fill the ramekins with the cream mixture then place a large baking sheet on top of the roasting tin, leaving a small gap at one end for the steam to escape.
  • Step 8: Cook in the oven for 20 minutes (or until slightly wobbly when you shake them - if you are using deeper ramekins it may take 30 minutes).
  • Step 9: Take ramekins out of tin and cool on a wire rack. Place in fridge until ready to serve.
  • Step 10: When ready to serve sprinkle a heaped TSP of caster sugar over each ramekin and spread out by tipping the ramekin in different directions. Run your hand under running water then flick droplets of water over the surface of each one....then it's time to caramelise with the blow torch, holding it just above the sugar layer.
  • Step 11: Serve within one hour to ensure your crust is still hard.

Details

Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Yield: 4
Beth Sachs
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Meal Plan 23rd - 29th January


Lunches this week will be Spicy Carrot, Sweet Potato and Coconut Soup which I made on Saturday...it's REALLY spicy so the kids will be having tuna/chicken/ham wraps instead.

Monday 23rd January
Dinner: Sausage, Apple and Red Onion Tart

Tuesday 24th January
Dinner: Lamb Steaks with Feta and Tomato served with couscous

Wednesday 25th January
Dinner: Special Burns Night Supper including a Scottish Cheeseboard courtesy of Mull of Kintyre Scottish Cheddar...details soon

Thursday 26th January
Dinner: Tomato and Caper Spaghetti

Friday 27th January
Dinner: Quick Chilli with Rice, Sour Cream and Grated Cheddar

Saturday 28th January
Dinner: Homemade Pizza and Chilli Sweet Potato Chips

Sunday 29th January
Dinner: Macaroni Cheese with Bacon served with peas

Beth Sachs
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The Gingham Chicken Cornish Fudge


Gingham Chicken Fudge

My name's Beth and I'm a fudge-aholic.

I arrived home on Friday to find a parcel from The Gingham Chicken waiting on my doorstep containing handmade Cornish fudge in lots of delicious flavours to try....and try we did. In fact it's almost all gone and it's only Saturday evening.

Tracy, the lady behind The Gingham Chicken makes Cornish Fudge, Brownies and Cakes from her kitchen in Liskeard and is now selling fudge online. We 'met' on Twitter where she asked if I'd like to sample some of her fudge..... I'm very glad I said yes.


All the fudge is made in small batches for a really light and crumbly texture and Tracy, where possible uses Cornish ingredients including cream, butter and honey.

The fudge came beautifully packaged. The award winning Clotted Cream and Vanilla fudge arrived in a white box tied with red gingham ribbon with a pretty card (including the ingredients list) attached, the other flavours came in small transparent bags, tied with gingham ribbon and a gift card with the red chicken logo. I couldn't fault the packaging, it was unique and would stand out from the crowd.


Onto the flavours and we had the pleasure of sampling;
  • Cornish Sea Salt and Pecan
  • Chocolate Orange
  • Mint Chocolate
  • Lemon Meringue
  • Cherry and Almond
  • Ginger and Cornish Honey
  • Clotted Cream and Vanilla

My favourite? A very hard choice but it was between the Cornish Sea Salt and Pecan and the Chocolate Orange variety. Both equally delicious and moreish. But even the flavours I wouldn't necessarily choose to eat had me coming back for more. The Cherry and Almond was seriously addictive, even though I'm not that keen on almonds and the Ginger and Honey was lovely and warming.The one that most surprised me though was the Lemon Meringue Fudge - it was delicate, light and lemony and unlike any fudge I'd tasted before - definitely one to try!

Thank-you so much for the sample Tracy. You can follow The Gingham Chicken on Twitter @ginghamchicken and also on Facebook

Beth Sachs
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Goats Cheese, Sun-dried Tomato and Caramelised Onion Pizza


Goats Cheese Pizza

I go through phases with pizza toppings but this one is my current favourite - tangy goats cheese, sweet caramelised onions and sun-dried tomatoes with a few green basil leaves for colour. Yum!

The dough quantities I've given here make enough for 3 medium pizzas which works out perfectly in this house, 1 for hubby, 1 for me and 1 for the kids to share. Having one each has the added benefit of being able to put what you want on it. I always make my dough in the breadmaker on the pasta dough function  which takes just 14 minutes and with cooking taking less than 10 minutes you can have a homemade pizza on the table in less than 40 minutes.

If you didn't need the full quantity of dough it freezes really well. Just roll it out, put it on a baking sheet and open freeze. It will also keep in the fridge for a day or two as well. What are your favourite pizza toppings?

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Goats Cheese, Caramelised Onion and Sun Dried Tomato Pizza
Easy homemade pizza. Vary the toppings as you wish
Ingredients
  • Pizza Dough to be made in the breadmaker
  • 165ml Water
  • 1 1/2 TBSP Olive Oil
  • 300g Strong Plain Bread Flour
  • 1/2 TSP Salt
  • 1/2 TSP Fast Acting Dried Yeast
  • Topping (1 pizza)
  • 1/3 Jar of Napolina Pizza Topping
  • 55g Soft Goats Cheese
  • 3 TBSP Caramelised Onion Chutney
  • 3 Sun Dried Tomatoes, chopped
  • Pinch of Black Pepper
  • Small handful Basil leaves
Instructions
Step 1: Put all the ingredients for the pizza dough (in the order they are listed) in your breadmaker and turn to the pasta dough function. When ready take out and split the dough into 3 and roll out - place bases on baking trays.Step 2: Heat oven to 230c/210fan.Step 3: Prick the bases a few times with a fork then spread over the pizza topping, scatter over the goats cheese, sun-dried tomatoes and spoon over TSP of the caramelised onion chutney.Step 4: Bake for 10 minutes in the oven, leave to cool for a few minutes before cutting into slices.Step 5: Scatter over the basil leaves and season with black pepper.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 3 medium pizzas
Beth Sachs
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Stuffing Ball Carbonara



Stuffing Ball Carbonara

This was always going to be a bit of an experiment because I didn't know if my coarse stuffing would hold together in small balls.... thankfully (after a short stay in the fridge and a little prayer) they did!

The stuffing, a lovely walnut, cranberry and smoked bacon one, had been sat in my freezer since before Christmas and was crying out to be eaten. So, whilst rifling through my freezer and cupboards last Sunday preparing my weekly meal plan I conjured up the idea for this recipe.

Due to the richness of the stuffing, I lightened the sauce by adding the grated zest of 1 small lemon to the egg mixture. I also reserved about 4 TBSP of the pasta cooking water in order to give the sauce a glossy finish -you just throw it back into the drained pasta at the same time as the egg mixture.

I'm also on the lookout for photography tips, specifically shooting in low light - if anyone can help I would be most grateful! I'm just counting down the days until the clocks change so shooting food in the evenings becomes easier.

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Stuffing Ball Carbonara
A new way to use up that Christmas stuffing
Ingredients
  • 250g Spaghetti
  • 100g Stuffing, rolled into little balls and left to set in the fridge for 30 minutes
  • 2 Eggs, beaten
  • 2 handfuls of grated Parmesan
  • 1 Lemon, zested
  • Parsley to garnish
Instructions
Step 1: Cook spaghetti according to instructions and whilst its cooking, fry off the stuffing balls in a little oil in a large frying pan. When the stuffing balls are cooked through remove the pan from the heat.Step 2: Beat together the eggs, lemon zest and Parmesan in a jug.Step 3: Drain the pasta (remembering to reserve about 4 TBSP of cooking water) then tip into the frying pan with the stuffing balls. Pour in the egg mixture and cooking water and gently toss until combined.Step 4: Serve sprinkled with chopped parsley and extra Parmesan.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 2
Beth Sachs
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Easy Chorizo and King Prawn Paella























This is not an authentic paella by any stretch of the imagination but it is very quick and easy and most importantly tastes absolutely amazing.

I've made a similar dish before, which I posted a few years ago but I've tweaked the recipe somewhat from the original version. It's now ram-packed with flavour and a squeeze of lemon juice at the end of cooking lifts it even further. A dish like this eaten on a cold, crisp January day really starts reminding me that the longer and warmer days of Spring and Summer are just around the corner...and they can't come soon enough. Roll on the clocks changing I say and surely we are due a hot one this year?!

What dishes do you turn to in the Winter to remind yourself of long hot summer days.


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Easy Chorizo and King Prawn Paella
Perfect with a glass of wine
Ingredients
  • 1 Onion, sliced
  • 2 Garlic Cloves, chopped
  • 1 TSP Dried Chilli Flakes
  • 200g Chorizo, sliced
  • 600g Cooked Basmati Rice
  • 200g Cooked King Prawns
  • 100g Frozen Petit Pois
  • 250ml Vegetable Stock
  • Salt and Pepper
Instructions
Step 1: Fry the onion, garlic, chilli's and chorizo in a little oil until the onion is soft.Step 2: Sprinkle in the turmeric and stir then add all of the other ingredients.Step 3: Simmer and continue to stir until all the stock is absorbed - about 20 minutes. Season and serve.

Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 4
Beth Sachs
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Meal Plan 16th - 22nd January


It's my birthday on Wednesday .....29 (eeek), so Wednesday will most definitely be a takeaway, or if I'm lucky a meal out on hubby (I wont get my hopes up though). I'm also in the process of updating photo's on the blog so a couple of the recipes have featured before and there are a few new ones thrown in too.

As per last week lunches will be pasta salad.

Monday 16th January
Dinner: Chorizo and Prawn Paella

Tuesday 17th January
Dinner: Beef, Chestnut and Red Wine Casserole with Sweet Potato Mash

Wednesday 18th January
Dinner: Takeaway

Thursday 19th January
Dinner: Stuffing Ball Carbonara - I have some sausagemeat stuffing in the freezer from Christmas so will roll into little balls, fry then toss with spaghetti, beaten eggs and grated Parmesan.

Friday 20th January
Dinner: Cheese Omelette's with Sweet Potato Chips and Salad

Saturday 21st January
Dinner: Homemade Pizza's

Sunday 22nd January
Dinner: Sweet and Sour Chicken with Rice

Beth Sachs
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Easy Chicken and Vegetable Curry


Easy Chicken and Vegetable Curry

This is a semi cheats curry as it does use shop bought curry paste.....however, with a few careful additions to pep up the flavour, you can produce a quick, easy and really tasty curry that's got twice the flavour of any supermarket bought one.

You can use whatever vegetables you have around, in this case I used 2 onions, 2 red peppers and a handful of frozen peas, along with the diced chicken thighs. Cauliflower and sweet potato are always good in curries as is squash and spinach. Prawns can be used instead of chicken if you prefer.

Pretty much perfect Friday night food. Have a lovely weekend - it's back to ballet, swimming and football so it's going to be a busy one here.




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Easy Chicken and Vegetable Curry
Serve with rice and naans
Ingredients
  • 2 Onions, sliced
  • 2 Garlic Cloves, chopped
  • Thumb size piece of Ginger, peeled and chopped
  • 1 Red Chilli, deseeded and chopped
  • 2 Red Peppers, chopped
  • 400g Boneless, skinless Chicken Thighs, diced
  • 3 TBSP Tikka Masala paste
  • 400g Tin of Coconut Milk
  • Handful Frozen Peas
  • Handful Toasted Cashew Nuts
Instructions
Step 1: Heat some oil in a frying pan and fry the onions, garlic, ginger and chilli until onions are softened. Add the red pepper and continue to cook for 5 minutes.Step 2: Turn up the heat and add the chicken, seal it and then add the curry paste. Cook out for a few minutes before adding the coconut milk.Step 3: Simmer for 10 minutes before adding the peas, cashew nuts and seasoning.Step 4: Serve with rice, naans and mango chutney.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 4
Beth Sachs
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Caramelised Red Onion, Feta and Bacon tart


Caramelised Red Onion, Feta and Bacon Tart

Don't you just love a good tart? I certainly do and always make sure I've got some sheets of puff pastry stashed away in my freezer to quickly satisfy any tart cravings that may occur.

Part of the reason I love tarts is that they are a great vehicle for using up odds and ends. I know I told you last week that Frittata's were the mother of leftover vehicles...but tarts come pretty close too.

So, the tart in question involved slowly caramelising some sliced red onions in balsamic vinegar and brown sugar until sticky and syrupy, my house smelt amazing. Then all was required was some assembly work....unrolling out the puff pastry sheet, spreading over the onions and bacon and crumbling over the feta. So simple but so so tasty. Sun dried tomatoes and goats cheese would work well as an alternative, as would olives and grated cheddar. What are your favourite tart toppings?

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Caramelised Red Onion, Feta and Bacon Tart
Serve with a green salad
Ingredients
  • 395g sheet of ready rolled Puff Pastry
  • 2 Red Onions, sliced
  • 2 TBSP Balsamic Vinegar
  • 1 TBSP Brown Sugar
  • 1 TBSP fresh Thyme leaves
  • 3 Smoked Bacon rashers, chopped
  • 200g Feta, crumbled
Instructions
Step 1: Preheat the oven to 220c/200fan.Step 2: In a pan fry the onion with a little oil until soft, turn up the heat and add the balsamic vinegar, sugar, thyme, salt, pepper and bacon, fry for 5 minutes and set aside to cool.Step 3: Unroll the pastry sheet and score a line 1cm in from the edge around the sides. Prick the base with a fork.Step 4: Spoon the cooled onion and bacon mixture over the base, keeping within the scored line, then top with the feta. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes. I sprinkled over a few torn basil leaves at the end to add some colour.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 4
Beth Sachs
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Fat Free and Reduced Sugar Sponge Cake


Fat Free and Reduced Sugar Sponge Cake
Sounds grim doesn't it, but actually it didn't taste too bad at all.

I've already told you I'm definitely not on a New Year diet.... but, in the interests of being able to fit nicely into my bikini on our family holiday to Egypt in February, I didn't think cutting back a bit was such a bad thing. Hubs is also on a bit of a health kick so I decided to transform his favourite cake, a Victoria Sponge, into something much more virtuous.

Not only does this sponge contain no fat whatsoever, it also contains only 80g of sugar, less than half the usual amount for a sponge cake of this size. This is thanks to a brand new product from Tate and Lyle - Light at Heart sugar (available in both white and brown) which incorporates a substance called Stevia with  all natural cane-sugar. Stevia is a herb, grown in South America that has incredibly sweet leaves, it's 200-300 times sweeter than sugar which means you only need to use half as much.

The result obviously isn't going to match up with a full fat, full sugar version of a Victoria Sponge but for anyone on a diet or watching their fat and sugar intake, it's not a half bad alternative. One word of warning, the sponge is a lot drier because of the lack of fat so the sponge wont keep for very long (2 days max). To finish, I filled the sponge with a 100% fruit Cranberry and Raspberry Jam, which made it even healthier, but you could use ordinary jam if you preferred.


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Fat Free and Reduced Sugar Sponge Cake
Guilt Free Cake
Ingredients
  • 50g Cornflour
  • 50g Plain Flour
  • 50g Self Raising Flour
  • 4 Eggs, beaten
  • 1 TSP Vanilla Extract
  • 80g Light at Heart White Sugar
  • 1/2 a Jar of Jam
  • Icing Sugar for dusting
Instructions
Step 1: Grease and line two 20cm sandwich tins. Preheat the oven to 180c/160fan.Step 2: Sift the flours together 3 times to aerate.Step 3: In a standing mixer beat together the eggs, vanilla extract and Light at Heart sugar for 8-10 minutes until tripled in volume.Step 4: Fold the flours into the egg mixture and divide between the tins.Step 5: Bake for 20 minutes and then turn them out and cool on a cooling rack.Step 6: Spread the jam over one of the bases then place the other sponge cake on top. Sieve over icing sugar.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 8 slices
Beth Sachs
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Meal Plan 9th - 15th January 2012


Miraculously I stuck to last weeks meal plan to the letter.... but I doubt this week will be as successful due to the resumption of after school clubs for Lowen and hubby going away for a few days with work. I will try my hardest though, I promise!

Lunches this week are mainly going to comprise of Tuna Pasta Salad - I've made a huge vat of it today to last the whole week. I've also made up another jar of my 'Really Useful Salad Dressing' to dress any side salads that we have with dinner.

Monday 9th January
Dinner: Feta, Red Onion and Bacon Tart served with salad or leftover veg from today's roast dinner.

Tuesday 10th January
Dinner: Feta and Sun-Dried Tomato Omelette with Salad (and oven chips for the kids)

Wednesday 11th January
Dinner: My all time favourite (and hubby's least favourite hence why I can only cook it when he is away).....Spaghetti Carbonara

Thursday 12th January
Dinner: Stuffed Red Peppers with salad

Friday 13th January
Dinner: Chicken and Cashew Nut Curry

Saturday 14th January
Dinner: Harissa Spiced Lamb Chops with Couscous. The kids will have Cheesy Pasta instead

Sunday 15th January
Dinner: We are at my Mum and Dads for a roast.

I've got Blackberries and Raspberries in the freezer, as well as some frozen crumble topping so I might whip up this lovely crumble for Friday and Saturday.

What's on your menu this week?


Beth Sachs
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Ultimate Chilli Con Carne


This is my ultimate chilli recipe, suitable for both kids and adults thanks to a little secret addition at the end for those who like it hot. The base recipe is from BBC Good Food  but I have adapted it quite a bit from the original, not least doubling the quantities so I can put half in the freezer to pull out on the days I just don't have enough time to cook (there will be many of 'those' days when I go back to the 'day job' next week...boo!).

The quantity this recipe makes is enough to serve 8-10 adults easily with rice, tortilla chips, sour cream and grated cheese. Nothing quite like a lovely hot chilli on a windy and cold winter evening don't you think...and it always tastes better if made a day in advance.

Leftovers can be made into a Chilli Cheese Pasta bake, which I will be duly doing in line with this weeks meal plan - miraculously I have stuck to it by the letter, an achievement in itself! Enjoy.

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Ultimate Chilli Con Carne
Serve this Chilli with Rice, Sour Cream, Grated Cheese and Guacamole
Ingredients
  • 1 TBSP Olive Oil
  • 1 Onion, chopped
  • 1 Red Onion, chopped
  • 75g Chorizo, chopped
  • 2 Red Peppers, chopped
  • 5 Cloves of Garlic, crushed
  • 1 TBSP Chilli Powder
  • 2 TSP Smoked Paprika
  • 3 TSP Ground Cumin
  • 2 Cardamom Pods, bruised
  • 1kg Minced Steak
  • 1 Oxo Beef Stock Cube
  • 2 x 400g Tins of Chopped Tomatoes
  • 60ml Sweet Chilli Sauce
  • 1 TSP Dried Marjoram
  • 4 TBSP Tomato Puree
  • 2 x 400g Tins of Kidney Beans, drained and rinsed
  • Thumb size piece of dark chocolate
  • For those who like it really hot, extra chilli sauce to serve
Instructions
Step 1: Heat the oil in a large lidded casserole and gently fry the onions, chorizo, red peppers and garlic until the onion is soft.Step 2: Stir in the chilli powder, smoked paprika, cumin and cardamom pods and cook for a few minutes.Step 3: Increase the heat and brown the mince then add the tomatoes, sweet chilli sauce and marjoram. Crumble the stock cube into 300ml of boiling water and add this to the pan, season well. Bring to a simmer then turn down the heat, put the lid on and cook for 45 minutes.Step 4: Add the kidney beans and chocolate and simmer gently, uncovered for a further 30 minutes.Step 5: Serve, preferably the next day with rice, tortilla chips, grated cheese and sour cream and the cayenne pepper sauce for those who like it really hot (in this case my husband).
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 10 portions
Beth Sachs
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Roasted Pumpkin, Red Onion and Goats Cheese Frittata


Roasted Pumpkin, Red Onion and Goats Cheese Frittata

Frittata's are my 'go to' meal when I'm trying to use up leftovers.... and thanks to Christmas I have an awful lot of cheese still left in the fridge crying out to be eaten, in this case some welsh goats cheese. The pumpkin was derived more locally from my Mother in Laws allotment, which is still producing lots of lovely produce even in January and the free range eggs were from a farm gate just outside the village.

I usually have a slice of frittata with some green salad, but hubby and the kids prefer chips - depends how healthy you want to be I guess. Whatever you choose, enjoy!

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Roasted Pumpkin, Red Onion and Goats Cheese Frittata
A great way to use up eggs. Serve with salad
Ingredients
  • 1 Red Onion, Sliced
  • 1 Garlic Clove, chopped
  • 1/2 Roasted Pumpkin, cooled and cubed (I roast my pumpkin in wedges at 180c for about 40 minutes, drizzled with oil and seasoned well)
  • 100g Goats Cheese, crumbled
  • 100g Mature Cheddar, grated
  • 6 Eggs, beaten
  • Splash of Milk
  • Seasoning
Instructions
Step 1: In a 20cm frying pan, heat some oil and then fry the onion, garlic and thyme until the onion is soft.Step 2: Preheat the grill.Step 3: Pour in the beaten egg (which has been combined with the splash of milk beforehand), pumpkin and cheeses, stir and season well.Step 4: Cook for around 10 minutes, until almost set, then finish the top off under the grill.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 4 Portions
Beth Sachs
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A Really Useful Salad Dressing


A really useful salad dressing

Now that Christmas is over for another year I'm all of a sudden craving lighter meals... don't take this to mean I'm on a diet  - I'm not, but my body just craves salads after all the rich meaty food of the festive season. So to help speed up the process of salad assembly I make a huge batch of this dressing and store it in a jar in the fridge (it will keep for a good month) and then everytime I make a salad (which is quite often) I can just drizzle a little over, whether it be a hot smoked salmon salad (see photo below), a green salad, rice salad, pasta salad, potato salad - I've yet to find anything that is doesn't work with.

Hot Smoked Salmon Salad


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A Really Useful Salad Dressing
This salad dressing can be used for green salads, rice salads, pasta salads and potato salads.
Ingredients
  • 120ml Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 TBSP White Wine Vinegar
  • 4 TSP Lemon Juice
  • 1 TSP Sugar
  • 1 TSP Dijon Mustard
  • 1 Garlic Clove, crushed
  • Salt and Pepper
Instructions
Method: Step 1: Put all the dressing ingredients in a jar, shake and store in the fridge for up to a month!
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 1 Jam Jar
Beth Sachs
4 Comments
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