Nothing Screams Summer in England like Strawberries and Cream – but not quite this way

I turned this classic on its head and then shook it around. May I present strawberry and ricotta salad

My first encounter with these sneaky berries edging over to the dark side was strawberry and black pepper sorbet at a restaurant I worked in. It was delicious and encouraged a successful attempt at cooking strawberries in balsamic vingar (for a cheesecake topping, if I remember correctly). It was on a trip to Barcelona that much to my surprise I found them in my salad!  

 
I didn’t plan this one at all. In fact, I bought the strawberries for topping angel food cupcakes (that’l be the next post folks!) but I decided to chuck a few in my bowl along with the usual suspects: leaves, cucumber, radishes, balsamic vinegar and olive oil. I had some ricotta too, which os only a step away from cream really. The whole starwberries and cream thing only just occurred to me! It made a really nice change, gorgeous and summery! Some walnuts would have been perfect. Oh, and I spinkled on some fresh basil from my little basil plant which is battling away in my tiny kitchen. 

Cheesy Baked Sweet Potato 

 
I LOVE cheese. I baked the sweet potato in halves as it was so big, this results in a crispy layer of flesh which. I gently lifted up and filled with parsley, chedda and feta cheese. Basically what I had to hand. And popped it back in the oven while I threw together my salad – with sugar snaps mmm-m! Simple as can be!  And next to no prep work! All you need is a bit of time while the potato bakes 🙂 

  

My Best Veggie Burger to Date: Spicy Hallumi and Portabello Mushroom 

As summer draws closer, the barbecues get pulled out of their sheds and dusted off. Or just set fire to. Barbecues are all about the meat. No one can argue with that. But it doesn’t mean its all doom and gloom if your a veggie! Far from it, I find my veggie contributions often get wolfed down faster than the sausages. Which can be frustrating at times, but I take it as a compliment. Providing I get to eat some of it first!  

  
Today I’m sharing a delicious speedy mushroom burger, I admitedly didn’t actually bbq this one but I’m looking forwar to testing it out at our next one! Mushrooms are excellent for soaking up flavour and are a great quick alternative to making veggie burgers.

 Marinade slices of Hallumi and a Portabello Mushroom in smoked paprika, piri piri grains, salt, peper, olive oil and a dash of soya sauce/ tamari. The longer you leave it the better, but it still packs plenty pf flavour if you bung it all on and cook it straight away, adding the soya towards the end. Fry/Grill/BBQ until the Hallumi is golden and the mushroom slightly soft (I like a bit of bite). Pop it in a bun or a pitta bread with fillings of your choice. I fried some onions too which I had with lettuce and coleslaw.  

  

Greece, How I Miss You and Your Wonderful Food

 
 I had the most wonderful holiday in Greece, more specifically Skopelos, for my lovely friends wedding (I’m waiting on the professional photos to publish the wedding cake post) and have been batteling heart sickness since flying back to Gatwick a whole week ago. Lidls, however, came to my rescue with a greek themed week! So I have stocked up on dolmadas (stuffed vine leaves) which I must attempt making, not that I have seen any grape vines in Cornwall… 

Anyway, back to the point, I made a yummy greek salad with lettuce, cucumber, tomatoes, olives, spring onions and a reasonable sized lump of feta. I put a ‘traditional greek music’ playlist on youtube, closed my eyes and let myself be transported back to that beautiful little island 🙂 

Rainbow Trout Sicilian Style


This is a lovely summery dish inspired by my time in Sicily, the lady I stayed with cooked almost all her fish like this, our tomatoes don’t quite do the dish justice but its as good as it gets!

Simply pop your whole fish or fillet on a large piece of tin foil, add sliced onion, garlic, parsley, cherry tomatoes, slices of lemon, season and drizzle with olive oil. Wrap it up and pop it all in the oven at 200c for 15-20mins, until the fish gently flakes apart with fork. I put some carrots and thinly sliced new potatoes around the edge of the tray which cooked in the same time.  Continue reading

Don’t Underestimate the Power of Porridge!

Porridge was my worst nightmare growing up. I remember mum pretending to sprinkle extra sugar on it in an attempt to make us eat it. When I left home. I decided that was it, I would never need to go near the stuff again. I was in control of my own breakfast! 

Funnily enough it was studying the personification of porridge in Cold Comfort Farm at A-level that made me think I should give it another go. And mark my words, the book does no favours for porridge, it’s the symbol of the sexual tension between mother and son in a hilarious parody of DH Lawrence. 

Ever since it has been on my breakfast list. Rarely without a good make over, its true, but thats just it. Porridge is boring. Especially made with salt and water like I do (I don’t use enough milk to keep it in the house). But add a cardomon pod, some cinnamon, a bit of ginger and you’ve got chai porridge! Or desiccated coconut and some slices of mango – tropical porridge! Who would have thought? Today I was a. It naughty and had banana, cinnamon and a spoonful of chocolate ganache left over from a cake. Still ten times healthier than cocopos though!  

  

Massaman Noodle Soup

This is really simple and delicous. Massaman curry paste is a new addition to my life and one I won’t turn away from anytime soon. Unless I get it together and start making my own curry paste… One day, one day! Its not very spicey and kind of sweet. For this spontaneous soup I used up the veg in my fridge, they worked really well together and feel free to follow them or use whatever you have! I ‘d love to hear what you like massaman curry paste with! 

Fry onions, garlic and ginger untill golden. Add diced aubergine and a large teaspoon of massaman curry paste. Fry until aromatic. Add coconut milk or coconut cream, simmer until the aubergine is cooked then add a handfull of noodles or two and some frozen peas. Depends how much you want! Be carefull not to overcook the noodles though! Follow the packet onstructions, usually between 3-5 minutes. If you have any fresh coriander chuck some on top and enjoy!

I love using aubergine in vegitarian cuisine, its a great meat substitute due to it’s spongy consistency, it absorves flavours and lets out its own juice similarily to meat. I don’t bother salting it as I never remember too.