All posts tagged: Sugar Free

Sweet & Salty Summer Salad

With the summer holidays just round the corner, we’ve had a couple of school/ kindergarten “end of the year” parties. For one of those events I made this salad, it went down very well and one of my friends asked for the recipe…so this is for you Francesca. Ingredients 500g/ 17.6oz couscous 600ml/ 1.2pt vegetable stock 5 tbsp olive oil 10-12 apricots 200g/ 7oz pistachio nuts 100g/3.5oz sultanas 1 handful of mint leaves Dressing 5 tbsp olive oil 1 1/2 limes (juiced) (1 tsp of honey if you like) salt, pepper & couscous seasoning (coriander, cumin, chili, anise, mustard seeds, cinnamon) Boil 600ml of stock, take off the cooker and pour the couscous into the pan. Leave to soak for about 5 minutes. Add 5 tablespoons of olive oil and stir it with a fork to get rid of any clumps. Free the pistachio nuts from their shells (you might need double the amount if your kids help out). Chop up the apricots and mint leaves. All you have to do now is add all …

Stuffed Sweet Potaoes

It’s a bit chilly outside! After a stroll (or in my case a jog) in the crisp air…what’s better than coming home to some nice, warm, home cooked food. Ingredients sweet potatoes 2 handfuls of spinach 5 mushrooms 100g feta cheese parmesan cheese 50g pine nuts cress Preheat the oven at 200°C/ 392°F. Halve the sweet potatoes and bake for about 50 minutes. While they’re in the oven, wash and prepare the spinach and the mushrooms. Steam the spinach and fry the mushrooms. When the potatoes are done, reduce the oven to 100°C/ 212°F. Scoop the insides of the potatoes out and add the spinach. Crumble the feta cheese over the mixture and spoon it back into the potato skins. Sprinkle some Parmesan over them and replace into the oven for a further 10 minutes. In the meantime roast your pine nuts. All you need to do now is decorate your potatoes with the nuts and the cress. And there you have it! A perfect warmer upper! Scrumptious!

Rustic Pumpkin Pie

Pumpkin is a perfect ingredient for a rustic recipe. With the kids due back from school (it’s absolutely pouring outside), they’ll definitely need a little warming up with some comfort food… The Dough 300g/10oz flour 1 tsp salt 100g/3.5oz butter 10 tbsp water The Filling 1 Onion 1kg/ 2.2lbs Pumpkin The Topping 3 Eggs 3dl/0.6pt Milk a couple of twigs of thyme nutmeg, salt & Pepper pumpkin seeds Make the dough and leave to chill for about 30 minutes. In the meantime chop up the onions finely and the pumpkin into rough cubes. Fry the onions until slightly brown. Steam the Pumpkin for about 15 minutes. Preheat the oven at 250°C/ 482°F. When done, roll the dough out and put it in your pie tray. Layer the onions on the base and cover with the pumpkin. Pour the Topping over it all and garnish with pumpkin seeds and thyme. Bake for 25-30 minutes. …and as you can see, it goes down very well with a little (or in some cases a lot) of grated cheese… …the …

Cool Cucumber Gazpacho

Summer has officially begun…sunshine, blue skies, shorts, t-shirts, flip-flops, running under the garden sprinkler (the kids), enjoying long evenings out on the patio (the grown-ups). Here’s an ideal little something to sip in the shade while you enjoy your summer… The Ingredients (about 1.5L/ 2.1pt) 2 cucumbers, peeled, halved, pitted and chopped 3dl/ 0.63pt vegetable stock 1 onion 1 clove of garlic 4tbsp olive oil 100g/ 0.2lbs bread cubes Seasoning a couple of twigs of parsley salt & pepper Make the stock and add to all the ingredients. Purée and add the seasoning. Chill for a couple of hours (if your a little bit better organised than I am, you can prepare it the day before and leave it to chill over night). Thats it, you’re done! Chill! MerkenMerken

Soul Soothing Celery Soup

After an eventful week…one of the cats went missing for 5 days, our younger son bruised his arm badly and had to wear a sling for a couple of days and our youngest caught Scarlet Fever…all that next to the usual organised chaos. I definitely need a little bit of soul food. If you feel the same give this a go! The Ingredients 1 onion 400g/ 1.7cups celery Root 2tbsp olive oil 4dl/ 0.8pint cider or apple juice 5dl/ 1pint  vegetable stock 1,5dl/ 0.3pint cream salt and pepper half a bunch of chervil Chop up the onion and celery root, fry until the onions brown slightly. Add the cider and vegetable stock. Leave to simmer for about 30 minutes. Purée and pour in the cream. Season with salt and pepper. Garnish with chervil and there you have it… …perfect soul food.  

Brighten up your day with a “Beetroot Bake”

I can’t resist the luscious color of beetroot and as I love an experiment (not always to the delight of the kids)…Here’s my go at a beetroot and feta cheese quiche. Be warned, just the smell while your cooking the onions, beetroot and thyme is absolutely delicious! The Ingredients Dough 150g flour 1/2 tsp salt 50g butter 4-5 tbsp water Quiche 1 red onion 500g/ 17.5 oz beetroot a bunch of thyme olive oil 5tbsp white wine vinegar Topping 5 eggs 250ml/0.5pt(U.S.) double creme salt and pepper 200g/ 7oz feat cheese Make the dough and leave to chill for about 30 minutes. Preheat the oven at 175°C/347°F. Slice the onions and the beetroot. Chop up the thyme. Roll out the dough and place in a greased or paper lined quiche tray and bake for 10minutes. While the base is baking, fry in the onions, Beetroot and thyme. Leave the base and the cooked veggies to cool down, then place the veggies on to the base, pour the topping over them and crumble the feta cheese over …

Hunky Hand Pies

I’ve noticed recently that a lot of recipes for hand pies (a trendy name for a Cornish Pasty) have been popping up. As far as magazines and the internet go, they seem to be the thing to eat this autumn. Well, me for my part, I think I could eat them all year round. So have a whip round the fridge, get out all the veggies that are rolling around and get chopping… The Dough 500g strong white flour, plus extra to dust 125g margarine 1tsp salt Cold water The Filling 1 fennel 2 parsnips 3 carrots 1 leek 1/2 a cabbage (I used a savoy cabbage) 1/2 an onion 1 bunch parsley 100g feta cheese salt and pepper   Start of with the dough and leave it in the fridge to chill while you chop up all the veggies. Put the veggies in a pan and cook. Leave to cool. Preheat the oven at 200°C. Roll out the dough and cut out circles to your desired size. Divide the filling between the pastry, leaving space around the …

A Date Cake?

A cake for a date? Or a date for a cake? It doesn’t matter if a great recipe for anyone that likes a date (one or the other way). The Ingredients 400 g dates 230 g ground almonds 1 tbsp ground flaxseed 3 tbsp water 1 zest of a lemon 2 tsp cinnamon 1 vanilla pod 400 g apple sauce 5 tbsp sunflower oil Preheat the oven at 175°C. Add the flaxseeds to the water and leave to soak. Chop up the dates (it takes quite a while and when your finished the flaxseeds will be ready). Mix the dates, almonds, flaxseeds, lemon, cinnamon, apple sauce and sunflower oil together. Spoon the dough in to the baking tray and bake for 90 minutes. Leave to cool down completely before taking out off the baking tray. While I was waiting for it to cool down I had a date with my painting… …time for a coffee break…  

Fig & Smokey Bacon Pizza

Fig & smoked bacon, a winning combination! It isn’t exactly the fist thing that would come to mind, but with figs being in season and some smoked bacon waiting to be put to good use… The Ingredients The Dough (ready made from the shop as this was a spontaneous idea and not having the time to make a dough -> hungry kids) The Topping 200g creme fraiche 1 onion 100g smoked bacon 6 figs Danish Smoked Salt from oz. (optional and very delicious) Pepper Preheat the oven at 220°C. Roll out Dough (or in my case get it out of the packet) and lay it on the baking tray. Add seasoning (salt & pepper) to the creme fraiche and spread over the dough. Slice the onion and the figs and layer them on the base. cover with smokey bacon and bake for 20 minutes. Try it and enjoy!