Spice it up

Start a saucy affair

How do you fancy something hot this summer? We all like a bit of spice in our lives now and again. Well, this week I’m going to give you all the ingredients you will need to “start a saucy affair”!

Some like it hot

There are any number of sauces and marinades on the market, all winking at you from the Supermarket shelves, with their bright labelling and clever marketing slogans all begging you to “EAT ME”. Do you ever pick up one of these products and read the ingredients? In most cases you will find the second one is usually sugar! Below you will find two recipes for sultry summer days, which are quick and easy to make and do not contain huge amounts of sugar, salt and other additives. Both recipes can be made in advance and stored in the fridge:

chicken, juices, roasting, sauce, healthy eating
Reserved roasting juices

Spicy Barbequed Chicken

You will need one large fresh free range chicken, or you can use, chicken pieces, thighs, drumsticks etc. If using a whole chicken, turn the chicken onto its breast on a chopping board. Using a sharp knife. cut through the chickens back bone from one end to the other. Turn the chicken over, place in a roasting tin, flattening the chicken and make slashes into the breast and legs of the chicken, to help absorb the sauce into the meat. The chicken will cook through quicker, with this method.

Set the oven

  • 1tbspn Mustard Powder
  • 1tbspn Curry Powder
  • 2tspns Chilli powder or to taste.
  • 1tbspn Worcestershire Sauce
  • 1tbspn Maple syrup
  • 1tspn Cider Vinegar
  • 4tbspns Tomato Ketchup
  • 2tbspns Olive oil

Place all ingredients in a bowl, whisk together to emulsify.

Spread all over the chicken, rubbing well into the slashes you have made. Roast at 200c, Gas Mk6, 400f, for about 1 hour, ( or barbecue ) still thoroughly cooked through. (If you use the Barbeque for this dish, you will not have the juices for the salad).

Drain the juices from the roasted chicken into a bowl. Whisk in 1 crushed clove of garlic. (Reserve for pasta salad)

Remove chicken to a serving dish.

salad, leftovers, sun dried, olives, pasta,
Pasta & Veg Salad

Pasta and Veg Salad

Cook 1 packet of wholemeal pasta, in salted boiling water, with a drop of oil, until al dente. Meanwhile, in a large wok or frying pan gently fry for 10 mins:

  • 1 chopped red onion
  • 2 chilli’s chopped (or to taste)
  • 2 large courgettes. halved lengthwise & sliced
  • 2 large red peppers, deseeded and sliced

Drain the pasta, Pour the reserved juices from the chicken over the veg, allow to bubble for 5 mins. Remove from heat. Add the drained pasta to the veg and mix to blend. Add:

  • 4 chopped fresh tomatoes
  • 2 tspns Capers, drained
  • 2 anchovy fillets, drained and chopped
  • 3 tbspns Olives, drained.
  • 2 tbsns Fresh basil and parsley chopped
  • Seasoning to taste

Mix together well, season to taste, serve with the chicken and salad leaves.

Any left over pasta salad and chicken can be stored in the fridge and mixed together to serve for tomorrows supper.

Enjoy your home made food and say NO to convenience foods. Its better for you and your pocket.

Fresh and Healthy

Say No to convenience foods

Following on from last weeks blog: https://truffleicious.blog/2019/07/06/summer-salads/ This week we continue with the fresh and healthy eating theme. Firmly saying NO to pe-packed, sugar and salt laden convenience foods.

Convenience foods, are notoriously bad for you as well as being considerably more expensive than fresh foods cooked from scratch. The salt and sugars added to these products are there to enhance the flavour and texture of otherwise, tasteless, over processed ingredients.

salads, olive oil, healthy eating, gluten free, pulses
Super Summer Salads

This week, I have for you a few quick recipes and tips, which I hope will inspire you to change both your eating and shopping habits for good.

Make your own dressings

Its really easy and much more cost effective to whisk up you own dressings. If you make a large amount in one go – I make 1ltr – and divide it equally into four different screw top jars. Empty gin or wine bottles are excellent or storing dressings, you are also doing your bit to save the planet at the same time. Special equipment, is not needed to make dressings. A simple balloon whisk will do, failing that a fork will combine the ingredients. After decanting into the storage bottles or jars, give them a good shake before serving, the ingredients will then emulsify – make sure the top is securely screwed on -.

recycling, dressings, salads, herbs, homemade
Gin bottle dressings
  • For the basic recipe you will need:
  • 180ml extra virgin Olive oil or Rapeseed oil
  • 60ml white, red or cider vinegar
  • 5ml Dijon on coarse grain mustard
  • Freshly ground salt and black pepper

Makes 240ml. Place all the ingredients into a large jug or bowl and whisk together, taste and adjust seasoning to taste.

You can experiment by using different flavoured oils, mustards & vinegars to your liking. If you find olive oil to strong a taste, replace half or all with rapeseed oil.

If making double the above recipe, divide into four. Add to each of the four portions of oil, add one of the recipes below:

herbs, basil, mint, dill, rosemary, lemon balm
Garden fresh herbs
  • Fresh Herb Vinaigrette 4 tabs Chopped herbs. eg: Basil, Mint, Thyme, Lemon Balm, Dill etc. A simple dressing for any salad.
  • Garlic and Chilli Dressing Add as many fresh crushed garlic cloves & chopped chillies to your taste. Drizzle over you home made pizza or mixed with sweetcorn & pulses for a ziggy bean salad.
  • Blue Cheese and Chive Dressing Mash 100g Blue Cheese with 2 tabs Milk. Add 2 tabs, freshly chopped chives. Whisk into the oil dressing. Gorgeous with wedges of Iceberg Lettuce.
  • Feta and Dill Dressing Mash 100g Feta Cheese with 2 Tabs Lemon Juice, Stir in 2 tabs freshly chopped dill. Whisk in the oil dressing. Lovely served with a traditional Greek Salad, or a simple cucumber salad.

You can experiment with the different ingredients, to make your favourite dressing, to use with your BBQ goodies.

Instead of buying tubs of Coleslaw or Potato Salads try making your own, by combining, grated or shredded veg (carrots, courgettes, red onions & fennel), or cooked potatoes with one of the dressing above. Your options are endless. Go on. Have a go, you know you want too.

For more recipes you can make from scratch, click the link below:

Use your leftovers

Leftover tips & recipes

Good morning fellow foodies. I hope you all enjoyed your Christmas? you are probably feeling a few kilo’s heavier & a few pounds lighter today!! To address the balance, here are a few tips & recipes to help you use up those leftovers. After all, do you really want your hard earned cash, dumped in the bin?

If you were up early enough, you will have heard me on The Graham Rogers, Morning Show BBC Radio Wiltshire at 8.50 this morning, sharing these ideas, with the good people of Wiltshire.

TURKEY  (cooked)

Left over turkey breast can be sliced into finger sized strips, dipped in beaten egg & tossed in a mixture of Polenta & grated parmesan. Leave in the fridge for 30mins. Fry lightly in olive oil, turning once & serve with a dip of pesto, mixed with mayonnaise, for the Italian touch.

If its Spicy you are after. Follow the above, but replace the ingredients as follows: Dip in beaten egg & a Tbspn Soy Sauce & coat in sesame seeds. Serve with sweet Chilli Sauce.

Boil some macaroni. Make up a cheese sauce, or use a can of Campbells condensed Tomato Sauce. Layer in a casserole, Macaroni, cooked turkey chunks, chopped peppers, sun-dried tomatoes, olives etc. Finish with a layer of macaroni. Pour over the sauce, or soup diluted with a little of the Macaroni cooking liquid & sprinkle with grated cheese. Bake in a medium oven for 20-30mins.

CHEESES – SALAMI – HAM ETC

Place left over cheeses in a food processor, with chives & some butter. Process until smooth. Pot in small ramekins, seal with clarified butter & serve as a spread. (For adults, use stilton & a couple of Tbspns Port)

Recipe for savoury Truffles can be found by clicking the blue link.

Savoury Truffles Love your Leftovers

VEG & SALAD

How about a different take on that Boxing Day Bubble & Squeak. Whisk yourself up a Breakfast Frittata

leftovers, fritatta, roast potatoes, cheese, pigs in blankets
Left overs. Breakfast Frittata

Have you looked in the salad drawer? I bet a sad looking lettuce & cucumber, lurk there, together with a few spring onions, the odd pepper & that bag of healthy shoots, that would go with….. you can’t remember what!
Well dig them all out, heat some oil in a large saucepan & throw them all in. Saute for a few minutes with a tspn cumin, add some veggie or chicken stock & bring to the boil. Simmer for 30mins & blitz with a hand blender. Season & serve with a spoonful of Greek yogurt on top.

veggie soup,lettuce,cucumber,cumin,yoghurt
Left over Veg soup

CHRISTMAS PUD & CREAM
Got an ice-cream maker?
Make a basic custard mix, allow to cool, stir in 500ml double cream & 1 tbspn Brandy. Process according to your manufacturers instructions, 10 mins before the end of freezing time, crumble in Christmas Pudding, or any meringues you may have left over.

Ice cream,leftovers,cream.custard,christmas pud
Christmas Bombe

That it foodies. Hope you have found some inspiration to use up those leftovers. Have a great Boxing Day & Happy New Year.

Merry Christmas

Christmas Countdown 22 Recipes for a Merry Christmas

If you have been. Thank you for reading. This concludes the 22 recipe Christmas Countdown. All thats left for me to say is “I hope you have found these recipes useful & you have enjoyed, reading these blogs.

Click the photos below to take you to the individual recipes. OR the blue link below will take you to all the recipes, mentioned below in the drop down menu of Christmas Countdown.

WISHING YOU ALL A VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS & A HEALTHY & HAPPY NEW YEAR

Stollen Pudding

Leftovers recipe

If you are lucky enough to be given or bought a lovely home made Stollen this Christmas, you MAY have some left over, along with some drops in the bottom of your liqueur bottles!!!!

For this leftovers recipe you can use Brioche, Croissants or any other bread product you happen to have to hand.

Ground Almonds,Marzipan,Marzipan recipe,Cake covering,Icing
Christmas Stollen with Home made Marzipan

 

INGREDIENTS. ALLERGENS IN BOLD. Serves 6 Oven 180c 350F Gas MK 5 Time taken 20mins + Standing time & Cooking

Slices of Stollen,( I used my own Homemade, filled with Cranberries, Pistachios & Marzipan) or any of the above.

3 Large Free Range Local Eggs

150ml Double Cream

350ml Milk

2 Tbspns Rum, or Cointreau

Grated rind of 1 large Orange

1/2 Tspn Freshly grated Nutmeg & Cinnamon.

METHOD.

Butter a large oven proof serving dish & lay the slices of Stollen over the base, building several layers.

Beat together the eggs, cream, orange rind, liqueur & spices.

Pour over the sliced Stollen pushing the slices down to cover in the liquid.

Leave to stand for 40mins.

Bake in the centre of the oven for approx 45mins until the pudding is just firm in the centre.

Allow to cool slightly, before serving, dust with Icing Sugar and add a good dollop of Clotted Cream or clotted cream Ice Cream. ( Marshfield Farm do a superb clotted cream & gingerbread Ice Cream if you really want to go mad).

If you want to use Croissants slice them & spread with Nutella. The addition of some of those bananas, wasting in the fruit bowl, also compliments this dessert. Omit, the alcohol, for a fruity childrens pud.

For more ideas on what to do with your Christmas Leftovers. I will be on  The Graham Rogers morning show at 9.10 on Boxing Day morning. BBC Radio Wiltshire

 

If you would like to comment or ask a question, please use the form below:

Ground Almonds,Marzipan,Marzipan recipe,Cake covering,Icing
Christmas Stollen with Home made Marzipan

Christmas Get Aheads

Time saving Christmas Tips.

Christmas Countdown. The big day is nearly here. Could you be interested in any time saving tips, on the run up to that festive feast. No. Of course not, you are not worried, or panicked, no doubt you are sitting down, with your feet up watching your favourite Christmas movie. Or, maybe you are tearing your hair out, bitting those finger nails & wondering how you are going to cope? Have a read, you might find something to assist you.

Lots of things can be prepared, ahead of the big day, saving you time & allowing you to demonstrate just how good a hostess you are:

  1. Laying the festive table, the day before is alway a good idea. Delegate the task to someone else and check that all is in order, with nothing forgotten. Make sure you have enough glasses for all those festive drinks. Don’t stress if they are mis-matched. No one will notice, as long as they have a drink.
  2. Peel the spuds & par boil them. place in a bowl, & toss in whichever hot oil you are using, on the day.
  3. If you are serving mash, invest in a potato ricer. No only can you have your own, cheap, cauliflower, brocolli or carrot rice. It saves time trying to mash those lumps out. Start a new trend, to impress your guests. Place the rice potato in a serving dish, & hand butter or oil seperately. (will satisfy all dietry requirements!)
  1. Of course, if you have chosen a cold starter, this can be prepared the day before. Was salad veg ready & wrap in kitchen towels & store in the fridge.
  2. Slice carrots & celery sticks into chunky strips. Plave in a casserole or roasting tin. Sprinle with chopped parsley & pop in the oven to cook. Drain, reserving the stock for the gravy. & serve. (Any root veg can be cooked in the same way)
  3. Make your gravy the day before, thicker than usual. when the Turkey is cooked pour some of the juices from the roasting tin, into the made gravy to add more flavour & thin it down. If lumpy, pass it through a sieve.
  4. If you need a quick extra pud. Keep a shop bought pastry case to hand. Spread mincemeat over the base & arrange apple slices on top. Grate over some marzipan & bake. Sprinkle with icing sugar & serve.

Hope you find some of this useful. Just remember, delegation is the key. This is after all, just another roast dinner. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Above all. ENJOY. It is your Christmas too.

Glace fruits, nuts, vegan Christmas Cake

The Social

BBC Radio Wiltshire, Monday 7pm

Day 17 of Christmas Countdown. Have been invited to BBC Radio Wiltshire tonight, to have a chat on a lovely new programme called The Social, hosted by the lovely Sue Kinnear & jovial Tim Weeks.

Wiltshire, radio, media, blogger, interview
The Social chat. BBC Radio Wiltshire

The Social is broadcast at 7pm on a Monday evening & explores the weird world of Wiltshire online. Sue & Tim invite vloggers, bloggers, podcasters and facebook groups who are making them click, to chat with them, on air, about what makes them tick.

So, dear foodies having a couple of large food orders to cook & deliver, before the interview, I just did not have time to post you a promised recipe. To compensate I would like to direct you to my sister site truffleiciousteaches.com 

For those of you, who are interested in The Low Fodmap diet or would like to know exactly what it is, you will find more information by clicking the blue link, above.

You will also be able to find more recipes on my Truffleicious Website

I will also be on The Graham Rogers Showing, give you ideas to deal with those Christmas leftovers on Boxing Day morning at 9.10am.

Until tomorrow, have a lovely evening.