Welsh Cakes

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welsh 31/03/2017

This tasty offering is a spiced fruity drop scone that is baked on a griddle pan. You can whip up a batch in no time and enjoy them hot from the pan slathered with butter and jam or sprinkled with sugar.

Makes 18-24

Ingredients:

  • 225g self-raising flour
  • 65g caster sugar
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • 100g butter, cut into small pieces plus extra for frying
  • 50g currants
  • 25g mixed peel, chopped
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • splash milk

Method:                                            

  1. Tip the flour, sugar, mixed spice and a pinch of salt into a bowl. Then, with your fingers, rub in the butter until crumbly. Mix in the currants and mixed peel. Work the egg into the mixture until you have soft dough, adding a splash of milk if it seems a little dry. It should be the same consistency as shortcrust pastry.
  2. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured work surface to the thickness of your little finger. Cut out rounds using a 6cm cutter, re-rolling any trimmings. Grease a flat griddle pan or heavy frying pan with butter and place over a medium heat. Cook the Welsh cakes in batches, for about 3 mins each side, until golden brown, crisp and cooked through. Delicious served warm with butter and jam, or simply sprinkled with caster sugar. Cakes will stay fresh in a tin for 1 week.
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Roasted Red Pepper & Feta Dip

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17265144_10154996593121000_1847607797772112201_n 12/03/2017

Here you have a super speedy, easy and more importantly, delicious dip that can be spread on toast, be an accompanyment to a meal, eaten with nachos or provide a lovely filling for pitta breads.

I made my own pitta chips by baking some cut up pitta breads in the oven for a crunchy snack to take on the soft, salty feta and sweet peppers.

Ingredients:

  • 1 red pepper
  • 100g feta cheese
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • balsamic vinegar, a splash

Method:

  1. On the oven hob, blister and burn the skin of the pepper completely. Turn with tongs to avoid burning yourself. Once the skin is completely black, place in a bowl and cover with cling film for 10 minutes to allow to steam.
  2. Once it is cool enough, scrape the black skin from the pepper. De-seed the pepper and very finely chop.
  3. Mix the pepper in a bowl with the crumbled feta, seasoning, oregano and a little balsamic vinegar.

Ultimate Fish Finger Sandwich

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screenshot_2016-10-17-23-01-28-1 25/10/2016

More an assembly than a recipe but an amazingly epic sandwich nonetheless. It seemed fitting now I have moved into student digs to post an easy, cheap meal using freezer staples but it still delivers bags of flavour and nutrition too. Plus… fish fingers!

Ingredients:

  • 1 ciabatta roll
  • 4 fish fingers
  • 2 sliced gherkins
  • A handful of salad leaves
  • Tartare sauce or mayonnaise

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Method:

  1. Heat the grill to medium-high and grill the fish fingers for 12-15 minutes, turning once. Turn off the grill, remove fish fingers and set aside.
  2. Gently warm the ciabatta roll in the residual heat from the oven for a few minutes. Cut open the roll which will be crispy on the outside and pillowy soft on the inside now. Slather with mayo or tartare sauce then line the fish fingers across the bottom ciabatta half.
  3. Top with gherkins and crunchy salad leaves and place the top, sauce slathered ciabatta half on top.
  4. Press down, admire and devour.

Lebanese Turkey Meatballs & Cous Cous

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screenshot_2016-10-09-21-52-38-11 09/10/2016

Another brilliant meatball recipe! This time it’s succulent turkey flavoured with rich spices that taste like you’ve been slaving in the kitchen for hours. Really simple to make, this is a real treat and a lovely change from regular spaghetti and meatballs (not that there’s anything wrong with those).

Serves 4

Ingredients:

Meatballs:

  • 500g lean turkey mince
  • ⅔ cup plain bread crumbs
  • 1 onion, finely grated
  • ⅓ cup fresh coriander, chopped
  • ⅓ cup parsley, chopped
  • A splash of milk
  • 1 Tbsp. (6 cloves) garlic
  • 2 tsps. each salt, sugar
  • 1 tsp. each allspice, coriander, chilli powder, cinnamon, cumin, fennel seeds

Sauce:

  • 1 Tbps. olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 tsps. (4 cloves) garlic, grated
  • 1 can good quality crushed tomatoes
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. each black pepper, cinnamon, allspice

Instructions:

Meatballs:

  1. Combine meatball ingredients and mix well with your hands.
  2. Roll into golf ball size meatballs and place on a baking sheet.
  3. Preheat oven grill to medium-high and place rack in the centre.
  4. Grill meatballs 5 minutes.

Sauce:

  1. Start making the sauce by heating oil in a medium cast iron pan on medium heat.
  2. Add the onion and sauté 5 minutes.
  3. Add garlic and sauté 2 minutes.
  4. Stir in remaining sauce ingredients and bring to a rolling boil.
  5. Add meatballs. Cover and reduce heat to medium/low.
  6. Simmer 15 minutes. Serve with fluffy cous cous.

Banana Pancakes with Crispy Bacon & Maple Syrup

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Screenshot_2016-08-30-09-36-03-1[1] 31/08/2016

When life (your friend who buys way more bananas than she can possibly consume so gives you loads) gives you bananas, make a tasty breakfast! I’m pretty sure that’s how the saying goes, right? This recipe is super easy, super quick and super tasty. You might say, bananas! Fluffy pancakes are delicately flavoured with a hint of cinnamon and mashed bananas as well as slices of sweet banana for good measure. With salty, smokey bacon on the side, this is a winning breakfast.

Serves 1

Ingredients:

  • 2 rashers smoked streaky bacon (or pancetta strips)
  • 2-3 heaped Tbsps plain flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 ripe, small bananas, 1 mashed, 1 thinly sliced
  • 1 large egg
  • 10g butter, melted
  • 50ml milk
  • maple syrup

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Method:

  1. Heat the grill to high. Arrange the bacon on a baking tray lined with foil. Cook for 5-7 mins until crisp, then turn off the grill but leave the tray inside to keep warm. In a bowl, mix the flour and baking powder with a pinch of salt and cinnamon. Make a well in the centre and add the mashed banana, egg and milk. Whisk to a smooth batter without any flour lumps.
  2. Heat a little butter in a large frying pan. Once sizzling, ladle in small dollops of the pancake batter, leaving a little space between each, as they will spread out. Put a few slices of banana onto the surface of each pancake and cook for 2 mins over a medium heat. When you see bubbles appear between the banana slices, flip the pancakes over and cook for 1 min more, until puffed up and golden. Transfer to a plate and keep warm with the bacon while you cook the rest. Serve the pancakes with the crispy bacon and a drizzle of maple syrup.

Eggy Crumpets & Bacon

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Screenshot_2016-08-29-08-54-50-1[1] 29/08/2016

If you fancy something a bit special for your breakfast, why not try these eggy crumpets? They’re simple to make but taste delicious and the whole family will love tucking in to them. Top with crispy bacon and maple syrup and you’re set up for the day ahead. I’ve given a recipe for 4 people but you can easily halve, quarter or even double the quantities easily depending on how many you’re feeding… or how many more everyone will want after they’ve got a taste for them. If you can plan ahead and leave your crumpets to soak in the eggy mix for an hour then they’ll be even juicier but they do work well with just a quick dip. If you don’t fancy bacon, how about blueberries warmed in a pan and then poured over the top with maple syrup or a light dusting of icing sugar?

Ingredients:

  • 8 crumpets
  • 4 large eggs, beaten
  • Splash of milk
  • Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • Pinch of salt
  • 4 rashers of streaky bacon
  • A small knob of butter
  • Maple syrup to serve

Method:

  1. Preheat the grill. Beat together the eggs, milk and spices in a large baking dish. Add the crumpets, letting the egg mixture soak in on one side and then turning over. Set aside.
  2. Grill your bacon until nice and crispy on both sides.
  3. Heat the butter in a non-stick frying pan over a medium heat and add the crumpets, four at a time. Sprinkle a touch of salt over the crumpets. Cook for a few minutes on one side until golden and then flip over and repeat.
  4. Serve two crumpets and a piece of bacon per person with drizzle with maple syrup.

Nduja and Mozzarella Gozleme

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Screenshot_2016-05-29-22-52-07-1[1] 30/05/2016

Nduja (pronounced en-du-ya) is a spicy spreadable Italian salami. It’s available from delicatessens and specialty grocers. Some supermarkets stock it too. If you can’t find it, you can substitute with finely chopped spicy salami. It has a lovely chilli kick and the oozy mozzarella adds a creamy respite to create a variety of flavours in your mouth.

Gozleme is a Turkish flatbread that is cooked on the griddle. Traditional fillings include minced meat, spinach and white cheese such as feta but I am slightly obsessed with nduja at the moment. Feel free to add what you like.

This is a really simple and tasty recipe that is fairly quick to put together. Making your own dough to encase a warm, spicy, gooey filling is definitely worth the little extra effort.

This recipe makes 6 breads but can easily be divided for fewer.

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INGREDIENTS:

  • 600g plain flour
  • 80ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 95g Natural Greek-style yoghurt
  • 250ml water
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 180 Nduja
  • 240g Grated vintage cheddar
  • 300g Mozzarella cheese, thinly sliced
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • Freshly ground black pepper, for sprinkling
  • Lemon wedges, to serve

METHOD:

  1. Place the flour, oil, yoghurt, water, oregano and salt in a large mixing bowl and knead to combine for 3–4 minutes or until smooth. Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and knead for 2–3 minutes or until smooth and elastic.
  2. Place in a large lightly greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap and set aside in a warm place for 30 minutes.
  3. Preheat a lightly greased char-grill pan or barbecue to high heat. Divide the dough into 6 portions. Place each portion on a lightly floured surface and roll into 20cm x 28cm ovals.
  4. With the shorter ends facing towards you, spread the bottom half of the ovals with the nduja and sprinkle with the cheddar and mozzarella, leaving a 2cm border. Fold the top half of the dough over and press the edges to seal.
  5. Brush the gozleme with the oil and cook, in batches, for 2–3 minutes or until charred. Turn over and cook for a further 1–2 minutes or until charred and cooked through. Sprinkle with pepper and serve with lemon wedges.