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Friday, 28 March 2014

Sweet and Sour Chicken


Sweet and Sour Chicken (with egg fried rice)
This is a great recipe to try out if you want a sneaky take away but cannot afford one or do not want to consume all those calories. I was concerned it might not be as good as the real thing, but it turned out pretty close to the real take out Sweet and Sour Chicken, so definitely worth a try at home.

Ingredients:

500g chicken breasts
3 carrots, cut into sticks
2 peppers, sliced
1 onion, sliced
1 tsp dried chillies
100g mushrooms, chopped
432g tin of pineapple in juice
1 tbsp cornflour
2 tbsp tomato puree
1 tbsp soy sauce
oil

Method:

  1. Cut the chicken in 2cm cubed chunks.
  2. Drain the pineapple and cut into chunks, keep the juice in a jug for making the sauce though.
  3. Heat the oil in a wok until hot, add the chicken, chillies and onion and fry for a few mins.
  4. Add the vegetables and fry until the chicken is cooked through and the vegetables are firm but cooked.
  5. Add cornflour to the pineapple juice and mix until smooth, add the tomato puree and soy sauce and again mix well.
  6. Add the sauce to the cooked chicken and vegetables for 2 minutes until thickened and warmed through.
  7. Once ready to eat stir in the pineapple chunks.

Serve with egg fried rice, boiled rice or noodles and prawn crackers.

OPTIONAL: Vegetarian option - omit the chicken and add a vegetarian equivalent such as Quorn or extra vegetables...




Monday, 24 March 2014

Bag End Lego



I wanted to surprise my wonderful husband with a little gift, just to say THANKYOU and show him how much I love him...

...and this is what he received...


...yes it is BAG END Hobbit Lego...


...and the detail on it is amazing, almost like the real one (see Hobbiton blog post)...



...you can even take the roof off to inspect it from above.


It does make me miss New Zealand though and our adventures there in 2012. (You can read some more about our Adventures in New Zealand)

Friday, 21 March 2014

Lemon Meringue Cupcakes


Ingredients:

Lemon Meringue Cupcakes
Cakes:
115g butter
200g caster sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla essence
190g plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
120ml milk
zest and juice of 2 lemons

Meringue topping:
3 egg whites
2 tsp cornflour
110g caster sugar

Method:

Cupcakes ready to go in the oven
  1. Preheat oven to Gas Mark 4 or 180C.
  2. Cream together the sugar and butter until light and fluffy.
  3. Beat in the eggs and vanilla essence until smooth.
  4. Fold in the flour, baking powder and salt, mix until smooth.
  5. Add the milk and lemon zest and juice, mix again until smooth.
  6. Fill cupcake cases with the mixture and bake for 20-30 minutes until golden.
  7. Allow to cool.
  8. Whisk egg whites until stiff.
  9. Add half of the sugar and whisk until glossy.
  10. Fold in the rest of the sugar and corn flour.
  11. Dollop the meringue mix on top of the cooled cupcakes and place back in the oven at Gas Mark 1 or 100C for 30-45 minutes and the meringues are crisp and golden brown.

Monday, 17 March 2014

Adventures in Freiburg & Titisee

Some more photos of our time spent in the Black Forest in Germany, such a beautiful place, cannot wait to return.

Titisee

Titisee frozen over

Luke enjoying a waffle

A large church in Freiburg

The large church in Freiburg

A beautiful old building in Freiburg

A quaint looking arch in Emmendingen

Views from the top of the tower near Emmendingen

Views from the top of the tower near Emmendingen

Views from the top of the tower near Emmendingen

Views from the top of the tower near Emmendingen

Friday, 14 March 2014

Spinach & Potato Bake



Serves 3-4


Ingredients:

400g small potatoes, cubed
half a medium swede, cubed
1 onion, thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, chopped finely
150g spinach
1 vegetable stock cube
150g grated cheese
Sausages (Optional)





Method:

  1. Chop all the vegetables.
  2. Preheat oven to Gas 5 or 190C.
  3. Add the swede and potatoes to a pan of boiling water and simmer for 15 mins.
  4. Add 200ml of boiling water to another small pan with the stock cube, onion and garlic, also simmer for 15 mins.
  5. In the microwave but the spinach onto a plate and cook for 1 minute at full power, so that it wilts.
  6. Drain potatoes and swede and place back into the pan with the spinach, half the cheese and the stock mix and mix well.
  7. Place into an ovenproof dish and sprinkle the rest of the cheese on top.
  8. Bake in the oven for 30-40 mins or until the cheese is golden.


OPTIONAL: Serve with sausages for those who enjoy meat in their meal!

Friday, 7 March 2014

Stir-fried Spring Greens



I have recently discovered Spring Greens, they're delicious but it also took me a number of attempts to discover how to cook them nicely. They are really good for you as well as they are full of Vitamin C, Folic Acid and Fibre.

The nicest way to eat them is stir fried in my opinion, so here is a recipe to try...

Ingredients:

Spring greens (quantity optional but they do reduce down a lot)
Dash of soy sauce
Few fresh or dried chillies, chopped finely
2 garlic cloves, chopped finely
Nut oil
Dash of fish sauce or Oyster sauce (both Optional)

Method:

  1. Break each leaf off the spring greens and cut out the thick middle stem.
  2. Roll up a few leaves together into a cigar shape and finely slice them.
  3. Heat a pan with a splash of nut oil until hot.
  4. Add the garlic and chillies to pan for a minute stirring them.
  5. Add the dash of soy sauce, fish sauce or Oyster sauce as necessary to flavour and stir before adding the spring greens to the pan.
  6. Stir fry until soft.

Serving suggestions

Serve as a side with a roast chicken, egg fried rice or any other dish (especially Oriental) of your choice.
Stir fry with other vegetables and meat and serve with rice or noodles.

Information about Spring Greens from: Wikipedia - Spring Greens

Monday, 3 March 2014

Adventures in Feldberg, Black Forest, Germany - SKIING - Day 2

On day 2 of our skiing adventures in Feldberg in the Black Forest in Germany we ventured to a different ski slope and wow the views from the top were awesome...


...in fact each time we went back to the top on the ski lift the sky was a different colour and the view became more amazing...



The tower at the top of the mountain



...and this was the hotel in which we resided for those few days, we would fully recommend it as it was right on the slopes, although there English was sometimes difficult and we did not always understand the menu!

Hotel Burgstube

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