Archive | September, 2011

Spiced Carrot & Lentil soup

7 Sep


This soup is lovely for a rainy day.the colour is a vibrant orange and the spices gives it a little kick.

2,tbsp olive oil

1,large white onion , sliced

2 tsp cumin seeds

1tsp chilli flakes

600g carrots , ( I didn’t peel them )

200g red lentils

1L hot vegetable stock

140ml milk

Salt & pepper

Heat the oil in a large pan and sweat of the onion until softened . Add the spices and cook for a further 5 minutes, add the carrots and stock,boill for 30 minutes until the carrots are cooked. Stir in the milk then blend until smooth. Season to taste and then top with a tbsp of plain yoghurt and scatter over some sliced chillies.

Serves 4


Sundays finds

5 Sep


On Sunday I took a walk to Tansley carboot to see what I could find. After a dull and wet start,it did get busy.

I like collecting old kitchenalia so after a while I came across a goblin teapot and some pearsons oven dishes for the total cost of £1 for the lot .

What a bargain 😀


5 Sep


For my doughnuts I use the recipe out of Richard Bertinet’s ‘DOUGH’ book.

250g Full fat milk
7g yeast (dried)
500g Strong flour
60g butter
40g Caster sugar
10g Salt
2 Large eggs

Warm milk up to blood temperature,
Mix the yeast into the flour,rub in the butter,then add the sugar and salt,then add the eggs and milk.
Work the dough for 15mins until it comes nice and smooth,
Rest the dough for 1 hour.

To make the doughnuts,divide the dough into 30g pieces,roll into a tight ball. Place on a greased and floured tray and prove for 45 mins,

Heat a pan of oil up to 180c, fry doughnuts for about 45 seconds on each side.

Roll in caster sugar once cooked,

I injected some jam in mine and made a few with custard .



My new cup from The seed gallery

4 Sep



I recently purchased a new handmade  cup & saucer from the art shop “The seed gallery and studio” opposite where I work in Crich.
This is a one of piece which i think is amazing and the work that has gone into it shows. I like supporting new artists and to know that I have something different that is not in the shop .
If you visit the gallery there is a wide range of products from bracelets to dragon bottle openers (which I also like )
The shop is run by Sarah & Rachel, they are very helpful people and always give a warm welcome .

Visit for more information.


Hot chocolate

3 Sep


Who said hot chocolate is only for winter ?
There’s something satisfying about sitting outside  having a relaxing cup of hot chocolate in  peace .

Serves 4

1 vanilla pod, split and seeds scraped out

1 litre/1¾ pints milk

150g plain chocolate, broken into small pieces

sugar, to taste

freshly grated nutmeg, for topping

1.Heat the vanilla pod,seeds and milk in a saucepan until boiling.

2. Remove the pan from the heat and add the chocolate pieces, stirring until the chocolate melts.

3. Whisk the hot chocolate  until frothy on top and add sugar, to taste. Serve with cream and  a dusting of nutmeg.

Also nice with a hint of chilli 😀

Leek & potato soup

3 Sep


2 tbsp vegetable oil

2 onion, sliced

250g potatoes, chopped

3 medium leeks,sliced

2.5pt vegetable stock

200ml double cream or milk

Salt and pepper

Olive oil and croutons to serve

Heat oil in pan and saute off the onions until soft,add the leeks and potatoes and cook for a further 10th minutes.
Add the stock and simmer for 30 minutes or until the potatoes are tender,pour in the cream or milk and blend until you have a smooth consistency.

Serve with a drizzle of olive oil and top with some croutons.

Serves 6

Beef Paprikash

2 Sep


1kg braising beef
2tbsp flour , seasoned really well
olive oil
2large onion , halved and sliced
3garlic cloves , crushed
400g mushrooms , halved if large
2 red pepper , sliced
2 tbsp paprika
4 tsp caraway seeds
2 x 400g tins chopped tomatoes
600ml beef of vegetable stock
a small bunch parsley , chopped
basmati rice , to serve
soured cream or yoghurt , to serve

1.Heat the oven to 180C.Coat the beef with the seasoned flour then brown all over in 2 tbsp oil in a large pan. Scoop out into a bowl, then add the onions and cook until soft and browned. Add the garlic, mushrooms and pepper and cook for 5 minutes until softened. Return the beef to the pan and add the spices, tomatoes and beef stock. Put on a lid and transfer to the oven and cook for 2-2.5 hours until beef is really tender and sauce thickened.

2. Stir in the parsley. Serve with rice and soured cream or yoghurt.
Any left overs are superb the next day as the flavours have matured .