Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Announcing Event ~Lets Cook for Easter


April brings the celebration of the festival of Easter, with the long weekend its the perfect time to get together and cook up a feast for your family and friends. In this event I am inviting all foodies out there to ccok and link up your Vegetarian Easter dishes.(Eggs Allowed)


To Participate:

1.Prepare a dish vegetarian dish  (eggs allowed) please link your dish using the linky below by entering your Dish Name and Post URL
2.Please link this event announcement with your entry, this is mandatory.
3.Use of logo is  not mandatory but it helps to spread the word if you can post it..
4. Multiple entries are allowed, archived are only allowed if reposted and updated with this event link.
4. In the event of problem using linky you can email me the entry at simplysensationalfood@gmail.com

Please use this format
Your Name:
Recipe Name
Recipe URL
Image no larger than 300 pixels.

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Inito Restaurant Review


On Saturday a group of like minded food and lifestyle bloggers got together for a fab evening of food and drink at the Inito restaurant in Liverpool Street London , We were invited there by Nitin Dattani who is co founder of the place. 



Visiting Inito was like a culinary journey through the streets of India. The restaurant has been decorated with a "no frills" deco portraying an urban setting of an India dabba. Rustic wooden tables with benches and cushions, metal signs and corrugated iron and crates were tastefully placed to create an ambiance to give you a wonderful street food experience.


On arrival we were greeted and seated at our table by Bruce who is the brainchild of this amazing restaurant from the planning, setting the place up and for the amazing decor of the place. 





The menu has been created by Chef Saurav Nath, who has worked in Michelin star restaurants such as Benares and Gymkhana. We were told that we would be provided with a sampling menu, little were we to know that the evening was going to be a culinary marathon of amazing mouth watering  dish after dish.




As we awaited for everyone to arrive, we enjoyed refreshing salted and mango lassi's and as all food bloggers do, we started clicking photos of the place. Inito caters really well for vegetarians which made me very happy.

Soon our starters of Aloo chat, Masala dosa and Chicken lollipos arrived. The dosa were impressively crisp and the potato filling was delicately spiced and delicious. Chef Saurav was very kind and even shared his secret with me for the ultimate dosa batter and furthermore gave me a tubful to take home too. 








The vegetarians were also served Aloo Tikki chaat,  a spiced potato cake served with tamarind chutney, green coriander chutney and yoghurt chutney garnished with nylon sev.This was absolutely delicious and I could have stopped at a plateful of this only.



We next ventured onto a traditional street food Pani Puri which is served on every street corner in Mumbai. Small crispy puffed puris filled with a chickpea and potato filling and drenched with a spicy mint pani. In Mumbai it is commonly known for people to compete with each other who can consume more than 25-30 of this puffy snacks in one sitting!!!As each puri is popped into your mouth the street vendor makes you a new one, how he keeps account of how many you have eaten is a science of its own!!!



Next course was  Aloo papri chaat , a tangy potato and chickpea dish chaat served with lashings of tamarind and yoghurt chutney and garnished with crispy nylon sev a fried chickpea savory noodles. We also sampled  Bhel Puri another famous Indian street food made from puffed rice, masala peanuts, tamarind chutney and nylon sev. I found this a little spicy with slices of green chillies in it and had to gulp almost three cups glasses of water much to the surprise of my European friends!!



Already having devoured so much food , there was more to come yet as we were served Roti wraps, these were traditional Indian rotis filled with various different fillings. For the vegetarians there was the paneer wraps filled with delicious spicy paneer, spinach, kidney beans, tomatoes and lettuce drenched with a spicy sauce. The non vegetarians enjoyed a selection of prawn, chicken and lamb roti wraps.The Roti wraps were served with a platter of sauces.



At this point our stomachs were really feeling the tightness, but Chef Saurav was insistent that there was more to come. After a short break we were served succulent Paneer tikka and amazing Pav bhaji a freshly baked bun served with a vegetable ragout and garnished with delicately sliced onion salad.The non vegetarians enjoyed a patter of tandoori lamb, tandoori fish, garlicky prawns and chicken called Pav sliders.



With all these amazing food and flavors out taste buds were on fire. Never have I had such an amazing fusion of taste.The hospitality and service we received at Inito was superb and even when we said no more food now, Chef Saurav persuaded us to try the final main course before moving onto desserts!! 

The vegetarins were served Palak Paneer a wonderful spinach and cheese dish sauteed with cumin and garlic and Baigan aur mirch ka salan, aubergine and jalepeno sauteed in a peanut and onion sauce served with the most amazing vegetable biryani. I just wish I had had more room in my bursting stomach to eat the whole portion.The non vegetarians enjoyed Murgh Makhni a chicken dish cooked in a creamy tomato sauce and a lamb curry.The biryani was exquisite cooked in the traditional way in the oven with a dough covering to keep it succulent and moist making each grain of rice separate. It was served with a lovely cooling yoghurt raita.



At this point we were all on serious food overload, and the mention of dessert had us almost wising we had left room for it. However as Indian hospitality goes, the host will will not let you leave without feeling you have done justice to every dish so along came the desserts not 1 not 2 but 4 different desserts. 

First came the Auguri Rasamalai, delicate cheese balls in a sweetened milk sauce, garnished with pistachios followed by warm Gulab Jamun a fried round doughnut type ball soaked in a cardamon sugar syrup.Following this we were presented with a Garam masala chocolate fondant with Horlicks ice cream and a citrus sauce and finally cooling Rose and cardamom kulfi. What an awesome gastronomical experience we had. 







We would all like to thanks Inito for inviting us for this amazing feast. I can't wait to return to Inito again with my family. Next time I will limit my self to 3-4 dishes to give them full justice. 

If you would like to visit Inito you can find them at:
Inito 
31 Bell Lane
E17LA

Tel: 0207 2477145I was invited to Inito for a meal, all views opinions and thoughts are of my personal experience. I was not asked to write a positive review. 

The bloggers who accompanied me to the restaurant are:



Manjiri Chitnis

Sylvia Filoz
http://happiness-is-homemade.com/

Tina Chawla

Fiona Macclean

Madeliene Morrow

Andy Hatten
http://getawriggleon.com/

You can read all the other reviews here:


Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Marbled Chocolate Cheesecake Muffins




print recipe

Marbled Chocolate Cheesecake Muffins
Delectable cheesecake flavours in a delicious soft muffins.
Ingredients:
  • 125 g Cream Cheese
  • 150 g Plain Flour
  • 175 g Caster Sugar
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla extract
  • 100 gCooks Dark Chocolate
  • 50 g Butter
  • 100 ml Buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon Bicarbonate of soda
Method:
1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees C and line a muffin pan with muffin cases.2. To make the cheesecake mixture, beat the cheese, 25 g flour, 50 g sugar, 1 egg and the vanilla extract. Mix together and keep aside.3.For the chocolate mixture, break the chocolate and place them into a heat proof bowl, add the butter and place the bowl over a pan of simmering water to melt the chocolate.Add the sugar and mix well. Remove the bowl from the heat and leave to cool.4.Sift the remaining flour and bicarbonate of soda on top of the melted chocolate in the bowl and add the egg and the buttermilk and mix well.5. Fill the muffin cases with alternate spoonfuls of the chocolate mixture , followed by the white cheesecake mixture. Using a cocktail stick swirl the mixture slightly.6. Bake the muffins in the preheated oven and bake for 25 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean. Once baked remove the muffins from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 12 muffins



















This post is in collaboration with Dr.Oetker, who want to inspire bakers to bake and to create recipes with their chocolate range. I have chosen this Marbled Cheesecake  muffin recipe which is from their selection of Chocolate recipes.
I have chosen this recipe over others as my family love both cheesecake and muffins and when I saw the recipe there was no better way to combine the two than in this delicious marbled chocolate cheesecake muffins.

Dr.Oetker are also inspiring everyone to get baking and enter their competition via twitter.
How can you enter??

Details:
 Dr. Oetker Twitter Competition

  • Dr. Oetker is encouraging bakers to celebrate chocolate by making a yummy chocolate bake.
  • Dr. Oetker believes that chocolate tastes even better when you share it, so they want to know who you’ll be sharing your chocolate bake with.
  • To enter, just tweet @DrOetkerbakes a photo of a chocolate bake you've made and tell them who you'll be sharing it with, for the chance to win a deluxe hamper of chocolate products from Dr. Oetker using the hashtag #evenbetterbaking
I was sent a selection of Dr.Oetker chocolate products to create my chocolate recipe.


Monday, 23 March 2015

Vegetable Soup -suitable for 5-2 diet




print recipe

Vegetable Soup
A delicious vegetable soup made with courgettes, mushrooms and potato with baby soup pasta.
Ingredients:
  • 1 Courgette finely diced
  • 1 Small red onion finely diced
  • 2 Medium Mushrooms finely diced
  • 1 Small potato peeled and diced
  • 6 Medium tomatoes finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Fresh ground pepper
  • 1/2 tablespoon Olive oil
  • 500 ml Water
  • 30 g Baby Soup pasta
Method:

1. In a saucepan add the oil and saute the onions until they turn pink, add the diced courgettes, diced potato, diced mushrooms and saute the mixture for 3-4 minutes.2. Add the water and the tomatoes and simmer the soup for 7-8 minutes until the vegetables are cooked. 3. Transfer half the soup to a blender jug and blend it to a smooth consistency.4.To the remaining soup in the pan add the pasta and simmer the soup for another 5 minutes.5. Transfer the blended soup to the pan with the rest of the soup and season the soup with salt and pepper. Turn off heat and serve the soup hot.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 2 servings






Suitable for 5-2 diet
This calorie count does not include the bread.


Calories Per Serving
Carbs
Fat
Protein
Sodium
Sugar
208
36
4
     11
664
12


Submitting to:
In my VEG BOX ~Courgettes event by citrusspiceuk and guest hosted by sliceoffme


Sunday, 22 March 2015

Giveaway tickets to Foodies Festival Syon Park


Foodies Festival, the UK’s biggest celebration of food and drink, will transform Syon Park into a foodie heaven 23,24,25th May as part of their 10th anniversary celebrations with celebrity chefs, new tasting theatres and more street food. 

Highlights of the show:

  • Chefs Theatre
  • Wine and Champagne theatre
  • Beer craft theatre
  • Chocolate Master Class
  • Cake bake theatre
  • Street food theatre
  • Kids master class
  • 200 Exibitors in Artisan producers market

Tickets are on sale now at www.foodiesfestival.com or by calling 0844 995 1111

Friday adult day ticket £12.00 (£10.00 concession)
Saturday or Sunday adult day ticket £15.00 (£12.00 concession)
3-day adult ticket £25.00 (£18.00 concession)

Friday VIP ticket £45.00*
Saturday or Sunday VIP ticket £48.00*
*VIP tickets include a welcome glass of bubbly, access to the VIP tent with private bar and refreshments throughout the day, priority entry to food and drink masterclasses, a goody bag and a showguide.

All children aged 12 and under go free to all Foodies Festivals when accompanied by an adult.

Open times:
Saturday 23rd May: 11am – 7pm
Sunday 24th May: 11am – 7pm
Monday 25th May: 11am – 7pm

Foodies Festival have kindly given simplyfood  three pairs of ticketsto give away to three lucky winners. 


How To Enter


·         Simply complete the Rafflecopter widget below to verify your entries
·         Entries can be via blog comment, Facebook, Twitter etc
·         Please read the rules they form the terms and conditions of this Giveaway
·         Closing date – 18th April 2015

How Rafflecopter works:

  • You will need to complete the mandatory entry first – usually making a blog comment. You can do this by clicking on leave a comment at the bottom of the post and leaving your reply in the comment box. Please note your comment will not show immediately as it needs to be moderated however rest assured it will appear on the site, so carry on with rest of entries.
  • Login to Rafflecopter – click to see what the question is. Make a comment answering the question on the blog.
  •  Go back to Rafflecopter and click the green button to tell me you have made a comment, this will unlock all the other options. All entries are checked to see that the mandatory question is answered, if its not all bonus entries will become void. 
  • Rafflecopter will tweet, like and follow on your behalf.
  • For information on how to find the URL of your tweet click here
  • For bonus entries you can return to this page and enter the daily bonus entries. 
  • If you are still unsure as to how Rafflecopter works please do check out this short video.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Walkers Sunbites


I was recently sent a selection of Walkers Sunbites snack range to sample. In the Sunbites range avilable are crispy crackers, pitta bakes, crackers and dip and crispy snacks.
These bitesize snacks are simply delicious for nibbling on, perfect for lunch boxes or for that savory treat as they are 30 % less fat than ordinary crisps.They areavailable in most major supermarkets.





The crackers are available in cream cheese and chive, oven roasted onion, lightly salted and rosemary and sunripe sweet chilli flavour.

The oven roasted onion and rosemary crackers also come in individual packs with a pot of caremelised red onion chutney and sunripe sweet chilli flavour crackers come with roasted red pepper salsa.







I was sent a bag of cream cheese and chive crackers and an individual  pack of red pepper salsa and crackers. We really enjoyed the salta , it was delicicious with the crackers and had a lovely spicy kick.

The cream and chive crackers again were delicious, but we We did find that many of the crackers in the bag were broken so dipping them in the salsa to devour was a little difficult.I think this is due to the fact that they are very light and airy and despite good packaging they tended to break easily.





The Sunbites pitta bakes which come in 3 flavours Vintage cheddar and caremelised onion, roasted red pepper nad chilli flavour and oven roasted rosemary and onion flavour.


I was sent the Vintage cheddar and caremelised onion pitta bites which were moreish and delicious with perfectly balanced flavours. However the contents of the bag was very little and a lot of the pitta bites were broken. This did not deter us from enjoying them as I sprinkled the crumbs on top of asald to give it an added crunch.


We enjoyed the sunbite snacks very much and look forward to trying all the other flavours that are available in the range. We were sent these snacks to sample by Walkers, all the views and opinions in the post are true and unbiased.




Monday, 16 March 2015

Potato Hash~ Secret recipe challenge 16th March 2015




This is my assignment with the Secret Recipe Club.The aim of the club is that you are allocated a blog from which you have to select a recipe and try it and blog about it. For the month of March my assigned blog was The Heritage Cook written by Jane Bonacci. Jane describes herself as food and travel writer, recipe developer, editor and tester, event manager, passionate baker and cook. Looking through Janes blog, there were many delicious recipes, I liked that her focus is also on gluten free recipes. I settled for breakfast idea. I chose the Turkey Hash as my family love Sunday Brunch and this was perfect for it. I did make slight changes to the recipe to make it vegetarian. I omitted  the turkey and added some mushrooms instead.




print recipe

Potato Hash


Delicious and tasty potatoes cooked with onion, peppers and mushrooms for the perfect breakfast accompaniment.

Ingredients:
  • 2 medium red potatoes peeled and coarsely grated
  • 6 button mushrooms finely chopped
  • 1 small red onion cut into very thin slices
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 each green, red and yellow peppers finely diced

Method:

1.Preheat oven to 180 degrees C / 350 degrees F.2.Oil a deep baking dish and keep aside. 3.In a large bowl add the potatoes, onions, diced peppers, mushrooms, salt and pepper and the oil and toss every thing together. 4.Transfer the potato mixture to the oiled baking dish and pack the potato filling down with a spatula. 5.Bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes until potatoes are cooked and slightly crispy on the edges. Remove from oven and cut into square slices and serve piping hot with baked beans and fried eggs.
Details
Prep time: 10 mins time: 25Total time: 35 minsYield: serves 4







Sunday, 15 March 2015

Mothersday Breakfast prepared with Love



A Mothers Love
Of all the special joys in life,
The big ones and the small,
A mother's love and tenderness
Is the greatest of them all.
anon

Mothersday a day for appreciating and pampering the one person who dedicates her whole life to her child.There is no better way to treat her than to surprise her with a delicious home cooked breakfast to start her day. 



For mothers day I am making a healthy and delicious smoothie, followed by a strawberry granola pots and a Spanish Frittata.



print recipe

Strawberry and Blueberry Smoothie
A delicious blend of summer berries and coconut water makes this smoothie refreshing and delicious.
Ingredients:
  • 8 Strawberries
  • 60 g Blueberries
  • 1 Apple braeburn
  • 100ml Coconut Water
Method:
1.Place  the fruit in the OXO colander and wash all the fruit.2.Core the apple, leaving the skin on and cut into quarters, hull the strawberries and place into the Optimum 900 blender. Add the blueberries to the blender and blend together all the fruit for 1 minute. 3.Add the coconut water to the prepared smoothie and stir it in. 4.Pour the smoothie into chilled glasses and garnish with some blueberries.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: None Total time: Yield: 2 glasses




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Strawberry Granola Pots
Layers of strawberry compote, Greek yoghurt and honey Granola , topped with fresh strawberries.
Ingredients
  • 12 Strawberries
  • 3 tablespoons Crunchy Nut Honey granola
  • 6 tablespoons Greek Yoghurt
  • 1 tablespoon Sugar
Instructions
1.Remove the stalks from 10 strawberries and chop them into small pieces. Add them with the sugar to a pan and cook for 5 minutes until strawberries start to break down but still hold shape. Remove from the heat and leave to cool.2. Take two glass jars or glasses and add a couple of tablespoons of strawberry compote in the bottom of each jar. Add a tablespoon of granola to each jar on top of the compote.3. In a bowl add the greek yoghurt and fold in the remaining strawberry compote to form a ripple effect.4. Spoon a layer of the yoghurt mixture on top of the granola in the jar.Repeat a layer of compote followed by the granola and finish with the yoghurt.5. Garnish with a whole strawberry.Serve chilled.
Details
Prep time: Cook time:5 mins Total time: Yield: 2 servings






print recipe

Spanish Frittata
egg dish with vegetables and aspicy kick.
Ingredients
  • 1 Large egg
  • 1 Small Potato
  • 1 Small Carrot
  • 1 Small red Onion
  • 1/4 Red pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 1 Green chilli
  • 3 tablespoons Skimmed milk
  • 1 tablespoon Frozen peas
  • 1 tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 1 tablespoon Sweet corn
Instructions
1.Peel and grate the potato using the OXO vegetable grater2.Peel and grate the carrot using the OXO vegetable grater3.Dice the red peppeer finely.4.Dice the red onion finely.5.Break the egg in the Oxo mixing bowl and add to it the salt, pepper and the milk and whisk it together.Keep aside.6.Heat a frying pan and add 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil and fry the onions until pink, add the grated potato, carrot, peppers, sweetcorn, green chilli and stir fry the vegetables for 7-8 minutes until they are cooked.7.In another frying pan add 1/2 tablespoon oil and heat it up. Place two rings in the frying pan and spoon half the vegetable mixture in each of the rings.Pour over the vegetable mixture the egg mixture.8.Turn the heat to low and cover the pan and cook the frittata for 7-8 minutes until egg mixture has set.9. Run a knife around the ring edge and lift off the metal ring.Using a spatula gently lift the frittata onto a serving plate.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 1 serving



I was able to create my mothersday recipes with the help of some lovely kitchen tools from OXO. I love the magnetic tin opener with a lining up window so you can line up the blade on the tin. it has a good gripping handle and the magnetic catch holds onto the can lid so that it does fall through into the can.
The three piece bowl and colander set comes with a lid that fits the bowl for storing food. The bowl has non slip surface and its is large enough for cooking for a family of 4. The colander has a lip that allows it to rest in the bowl but lifting it away from the base for easy drainage.The neat lid fits the bowl and all three items are stackable for easy storage.
Lastly the grate and slice is a neat little gadget with 4 colour co ordinated grating discs that shreads, grates, slices and juliennes. It has a good gripping handle with a storage compartment for storing the different blades for additional safety.






I was sent the OXO tools to use in my kitchen to create my recipes.I am sure any mum would love these in her kitchen too.

Submitting to:
Lets cook for mothersday event by simplyfood.


Thursday, 5 March 2015

Cheesy Pasta Bake




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Cheesy Pasta Bake


A delicious and comforting pasta dish thats is perfect served with aside salad.

Ingredients:
    For White Sauce
  • 250 ml skimmed milk
  • 175 g low fat cheddar cheese grated
  • 30 g plain flour
  • 30 g butter
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Pinch of nutmeg

  • 200 g penne pasta
  • 150 g low fat grated cheddar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • water for boiling pasta
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil

Method:

1.In a large pan add the water and 1 teaspoon salt and bring to boil.Once its boiling add the pasta and cook it until its al dente. 2.Drain the pasta and return it to the pan. Add a teaspoon of olive oil to the cooked pasta and toss the pasta to stop it sticking together.3.In another saucepan, add the butter and flour and cook it for a few minutes until the rawness of the flour is gone.4.Add the milk gradually and keep whisking the sauce to ensure all the milk is incorporated into the flour and there are no lumps.5.Once all the milk is added keep whisking until sauce thickens, it should easily coat the back of a spoon.At this stage add half the cheese and whisk it in.Add the nutmeg, salt and pepper and stir it in.6.Take the sauce off the heat and pour the sauce over the cooked pasta and mix it all together.7.Preheat the grill to medium .8.Spoon the saucy pasta into an ovenproof baking dish and sprinkle the remaining cheese over it.Place the pasta dish under the grill and cook until the cheese melts and it starts to bubble and turn golden brown.9.Carefully remove the baked cheesy pasta from the grill. Serve hot with aside salad.
Details
Prep time: 5 mins Cooking time: 20mins Total time: 25 minsYield: 4 servings



Submitting to :
Lets cook for Mothersday event by simplyfood.
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