Thursday 28 February 2013

Caramel Peda (Indian Fudge)

Delectable pieces of melt in the mouth soft brown fudge topped with flaked almonds.


240 ml  / 8 oz Caramel Condensed milk
300 g  / 10 oz Milk Powder
Flaked almonds
Butter to grease the pan


1. In a large microwaveable dish add the caramel condensed milk and the milk powder.
2. Mix the ingredients and microwave on high for 6 minutes, stirring the mixture every 2 minutes.
3. Remove from microwave and leave to cool slightly. The fudge will start to harden slightly.
4. Once it is cool enough to handle, grease a shallow dish and transfer the fudge to it, smooth it out using the back of a spoon. Sprinkle the fudge with the almond flakes and leave to cool.
5.Once it is cool and fudge has set cut into desired shapes .

You may like:
Coconut and mixed nut barfi 
Submitting to:
Lets Cook/Bake for valentine event by

Tuesday 26 February 2013

Lemon and Honey cake.

Moist and bursting with citrussy tang and sweetness from the honey this cake is fit  for the gods.


For Cake:

180 ml Sunflower oil
2 eggs( or egg substitute)
1 tablespoon lemon zest
2 tablespoons lemon juice
280 grams Greek Gods  Honey and Vanilla Yoghurt
350 grams caster sugar
300 grams self raising flour

For Syrup:

2 tablespoons lemon Juice
2 tablespoons honey
3 tablespoons icing sugar for syrup
1/2 tablespoon icing sugar for dusting cake


1. Preheat oven to 180 Degrees C / 350 Degrees F
2. Grease a 9 inch Brundt cake tin and keep it aside
3.In a large bowl add the eggs,oil and sugar and whisk, add the yoghurt, lemon rind and whisk again.
4. Sieve the flour in another bowl and add it to the wet mixture. Fold the flour gently to the wet mixture.
5.Pour the mixture into the prepared greased cake tin and smooth it on the top.
6. Tap the tin slightly and then place it in the preheated oven to bake for 40-45 minutes, or check with a skewer, a clean skewer means cake is baked.
7.Remove cake from oven and leave to cool in tin.Once cooled invert the cake tin onto serving plate.
8. Place the lemon juice, honey and icing sugar in a saucepan, heat gently until sugar melts.
9. Poke holes in the cake with the skewer and pour over it the warm lemon syrup.
10. Before cutting the cake dust it with some icing sugar.
Serve the cake  with some a spoonful of Greek Gods vanilla and honey yoghurt and strawberries.

I was recently sent a tub of Greek Gods  Honey and Vanilla yoghurt with a request to create a recipe with it that would be fit for Aphrodite the Greek goddess of love, beauty and desire.The competition was hosted together with Foodies100.  I think this cake would rise to the challenge very well. It would be perfect to present to Aphrodite.

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Monday 25 February 2013

Cranberry and Ginger Beer Teaser Mocktail with Funkin Cocktail mixers

A few months ago I attended a mocktail making class and since then I have become a fan of mocktails  Any occasion, get together or party and out comes my cocktail shaker, muddlers, stirrers and ice bucket.I love experimenting with different syrups, juices,flavors and combining spices to create delicious mocktails. You can check out some of my creations here.
Recently I discovered Funkin they make 100% natural fresh cocktail mixers.The mixers have no artificial colours, flavours, preservatives or additives. Some of the products they supply are cocktail mixers in litre packs and in smaller pouches too.They also make different flavour syrups and fruit purees, in fact Funkin can provide you with a party pack so that you have everything to make the perfect mocktails and cocktails without the stress and hassle.All their products are available from major supermarkets or on line.Their website also has some cool mocktail/cocktail idea and a section dedicated to tips to make the perfect mocktail/cocktail to get your part  started.

Thankyou to Funkin for sending me the sample of Cosmopolitan mixer.The views and opinions expressed are purely my own thoughts on the products.

Cranberry and Ginger beer Teaser Mocktail

Refreshing mocktail  that will tease your palate.

100 ml Funkin Cosmopolitan cocktail mixer
100 ml Ginger Beer
Slices of Lemon


1. In a jug add the ice, 100 ml of Funkin Cosmopolitan mixer and 100 ml ginger beer.
2. Stir and serve immediately poured into martini glasses garnished with a slice of lemon.

Sunday 24 February 2013

Vita Coco- Flavoured coconut water.

Most people who have travelled to tropical countries will have memories of  having  tried coconut water, generally it is served fresh straight from the green coconut with the top sliced off and served with a straw. The coconut water directly from the green coconut is refreshing and has a natural sweetness of its own. Sadly in the UK  tropical sunshine, beaches, sun and sand are only visible in holiday brochures or travel programmes, so to inject a little bit of sunshine into your lives and remind you of far away shores, why not try Vita Coco's  natural  fat-free, cholesterol-free, nutrient-packed, potassium-stacked, mega-electrolyte coconut water with natural sugars. It comes in six delicious flavours:
  • Natural 
  • Acai and Pomegranate
  • Peach and Mango
  • Orange
  • Pineapple 
  • Tropical fruit
The coconut water is gluten free and vegan and it is kosher too and totally suitable for vegetarians. It is also free from preservatives and colourings. Vita Cocopackaged in a tetra pack and comes in 330 ml and 500 ml  and 1 litre sizes.Strangely the 330ml size which was a lunchbox size and ideal for travel did not not come with straw so drinking out of the carton was a little difficult especially if it was given to a child.Vita Coco is available to purchase on line, alternatively it is readily available  in most supermarkets. It retails between £1.49-£3.49 depending on size.

I was sent some samples of the natural, peach and mango, orange and pineapple flavours to try, I really enjoyed the refreshing taste of the coconut water, although on a personal note I  felt that the natural flavour was by far my favorite, although the flavoured coconut waters were really good in making mocktails to give them an exotic taste of paradise

Thankyou too Vita Coco for sending me the samples.The views and opinions expressed are purely my own thoughts on the products.

Thursday 21 February 2013

Review Vintage Cakes by Jane Brocket

I recently received a book called Vintage cakes by Jane Brocket to review. The book is a collection of recipes for delicious cakes of all sizes. There are simple recipes such as Victoria sponge sandwich to the more elaborate celebration cakes. The book opens with a baking history, followed by an essential ingredient and equipment list. Both these pages tell the baker about basic ingredients that are required for baking and also the basic equipment that one needs to start with. This is particularly useful if you are a novice at baking. In Essential techniques the author covers everything from oven temperature, preparing ingredients and also checking the cake for a perfect bake. This is good as the author has taken into consideration an inexperienced baker starting out on a baking project. 
The chapters that follow are in categories of different bakes such as 
  • Cake-tin cakes 
  • Everyday cakes  
  • Little cakes 
  • Posh cakes 
  • Fancies and frivolities 
  • Celebration cakes 
The recipes start with an introduction to the cake type, followed by an ingredients list and then the method. The page is laid out so that it is easy to follow. I would say the book is more for a new baker starting off on their baking journey as most of the recipes are very classic, tried and tested. I loved the vintage style photography and the colourful pages. The book retails at £25.00 which is a little expensive but I think given the fact that it is a really pretty book and it would make a wonderful present as a keepsake that can be passed from mother to daughter.

My rating for this book:
Content 4/5
Illustrations 5/5
Recipes 4/5
Overall score 13/15

Thankyou to jacqui  small  publishing for sending me this book to review.I look forward to trying the recipes through this book.All the views in this post are my own.

Monday 18 February 2013

Mango Possets- Secret Recipe Club challenge

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.
My assigned blog was Lavender and Lime,this blog is run by Tandy Sinclair.The site has many delicious recipes.I enjoyed looking through the collection for my search for a vegetarian recipe, Finally my sweet tooth caved in and I chose her Orange and cinnamon Posset. I was intrigued by how the cream was going to set without gelatin. I halved the measurements to make  8 miniature portions and also replaced the Orange with a ripe mango.

Delicious and creamy Mango Possets, a delectable and drool worthy dessert. 


300 ml double cream
300 ml mango puree
75 grams sugar (less if mango is sweet)
I teaspoon lemon zest


1. In a pan add the sugar and 200 ml mango puree and bring to boil until sugar melts.
2. Turn the heat low and add the cream, whisk for 4-5 minutes until mixture starts to thicken slightly.Strain this mixture through a sieve.
3. Add the lemon zest and stir it into the cream mixture and leave it to cool
4. Get 8 shot glasses and place 1 tablespoon of mango puree into each.Place the shot glasses into the freezer for 10 minutes.
5.Remove the shot glasses from the freezer and gently pour the mango cream on top of the mango puree.
6. Place the Possets into the fridge to set for 2 hours. Sprinkle with a little more lemon zest
Serve  Possets with a lemon short bread.

You may like:
Strawberry Cheese cake

Friday 15 February 2013

Roasted vegetable with spicy peri peri Couscous

Roasted seasonal vegetables, with spicy peri peri couscous.


1/2 cup Broccoli florets
1/2 cup diced fennel
8 mushrooms diced
1 red onion cut into chunks
1 red pepper cut into chunks
8 cherry tomatoes
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon African Peri Peri marinade
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 blood orange segmented


I tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon African Peri Peri marinade
1 cup instant couscous
1.25 cups boiling water
1/2 teaspoon salt
Juice of 1 blood orange


1.Line a baking tray with foil. In a bowl add all the vegetables and add the Peri Peri marinade, olive oil ,salt and pepper. Mix well and spread the vegetables on the baking tray.
2.Roast the vegetables in a preheated oven 180 degrees C 375 degrees F for 20 - 25 minutes.Stir the vegetables around for even cooking half way through the cooking time.
3.Add the couscous to a large bowl, add the lemon juice,orange juice salt, Peri Peri marinade and boiling water to it.(Adjust water quantity as per packet instructions)
4.Cover and leave aside until the couscous absorbs all the water.(About 20 minutes)
5. Fluff up the couscous with a fork and transfer it to a serving platter.
6. Pile on top of the couscous the roasted vegetables and top with blood orange segments.
Serve immediately with warm pitta bread

The sample bottle of the  Peri Peri marinade used in this recipe was sent to me by African Volcano. The Peri Peri style sauces and marinades  are produced under the brand African Volcano, they have been developed by award-winning Master Chef of Great Britain Grant Hawthorne. I really enjoyed using the marinade in various dishes I created ,the heat was just enough for our palate. Many thanks to Grant for sending me the sample.
NB- This recipe can be made with any seasonal vegetables of choice, the blood orange can be replaced with ordinary orange.
You may like:
Burghul Wheat Pilaf

Cup cake class at Leiths School of food and wine.

I was recently invited to attend a cup cake class at Leiths school of food and wine.  Leiths School of Food and Wine in London has an international reputation as a first class culinary institute for chefs. Students come from all over the world to enjoy dedicated teaching in a friendly atmosphere. The school is not restricted to classes for  career cooks , there are many part time, evening and weekend classes for amateur cooking enthusiasts r The classes vary from food styling, to cup cake making, knife skills and regional and international cooking . These are just a few of the classes on offer for more details you can visit their web site.
The cupcake class I attended  had about 16 other students, we were escorted to a clean and beautifully laid out kitchen. To get our energies charged up we were served coffee and delicious croissants, pastries and chocolate "disco" cupcakes, the tutor did admit being  a little over generous with the edible glitter.!!
Once fed and watered we enjoyed a cupcake demonstration of Lemon curd cupcakes by our tutors Ansobe Smal  and Andrea Hamilton.We learnt how to make the lemon curd and butter cream icing to go with the lemon cup cakes.
Now it was our turn to start baking and creating. We split into 4 groups and each group set about making a batch of cupcakes . We were taught   four different flavours and types of cupcakes each adopted a different technique.The cupcakes were Lemon curd cupcakes,German chocolate , Spiced courgette cupcakes with lemon icing and Banana cupcakes with caramel filling and peanut butter icing.Both the tutors were constantly at hand guiding us and answering any queries we had.

Once the cupcakes were in the oven baking we were treated like royalty as lunch was served, delicious homemade leak and potato soup, Crusty bread, a refreshing salad and plenty of fruit and cheese  all washed down a glass of wine.
After lunch we had another demonstration of preparing the different types icings for our cup cakes.After the demo we made our icing and decorated our cupcakes using the different types of nozzles creating an array of swirls and patterns. We then added the finishing touches to our cupcakes with edible sprinkles and glitters.
The cupcake workshop was lots of fun and very informative.Unlike most cupcake classes this one actually showed you how to make and bake the cup cakes them selves and not just concentrate on the icing and decoration.Finally cup cakes made and boxed up ready for taking home together with a recipe booklet ,we were each given a certificate of attendance.

I had the most enjoyable time at the workshop and would definitely recommend it to anyone who wishes to learn the art of baking cupcakes rather then just decorating them.I would like to thank Leiths school of food and wine for inviting me to attend the class and helping me broaden my knowledge about cup cake making and baking in general.

Grow Organic, Eat Organic book review

I recently received a book called Grow Organic, Eat Organic.The book is aimed at children from age 6+ .
The book is perfect as a gift for young children and parents who enjoy cooking and gardening. It is illustrated with colourful pictures, easy to understand instructions and steps which provide growing suggestions to keep children interested from seed to plate. Gardening is one of the greatest ways to stimulate a child’s imagination and to ignite their first interest in the environment, while teaching important lessons in helping and sharing.
This book is perfect for encouraging  parent and child interaction where both can spend time together working in the garden and learning about nature and later cooking with the vegetables that they have grown.

The book also has a basic recipe section that the parent can use to cook with their child.The book has projects to cover the whole year so that parents and children can grow organic and eat organic the whole year around.I would definitely buy this book for my young nieces. It retails at £ 5.99, a small price to pay for all year round fun.It would make a perfect present for a child  if put together with a mini gardening kit of some packets of seeds and flowers and children's gardening tools.

My rating for this book:
Content 4/5
Illustrations 5/5
Recipes 4/5
Overall score 13/15

Thankyou to b small Publishing for sending me this book to review.All the views in this post are my own.

Thursday 14 February 2013

Valentine heart shaped chocolate chip cookies.

Delicious heart shaped chocolate chip cookies that melt in the mouth.Perfect valentine gift.


225 g / 8 oz butter
140 g / 5 oz sugar
1 tablespoon apple sauce
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
250 g / 9 oz plain flour
25 g /1 oz cocoa
pinch of salt
120 g / 4 oz plain chocolate chip
60 g / 2 oz chopped hazelnuts


1.Place the butter and sugar in a bowl and cream together, add the apple sauce and vanilla and mix well.
2.Sieve the cocoa, salt and flour  and add it to the butter.
3. Add the nuts and chocolate chip and combine to make a dough.
4. Wrap the dough in cling film and chill for 1 hour

5.Remove dough from fridge and divide into two parts roll each part out on grease proof paper  to approx 5 mm thick and cut out heart shape cookies from it.
6. Place the cookies on a oiled baking tray leaving space between the cookies. Repeat for rest of dough.
7. Place the trays of cookies in the fridge for 10 minutes to chill.
8. Preheat oven to 190 degrees C / 375 degrees F
9. Bake the cookies in the oven for 10-15 minutes or until firm.
10 Transfer cookies to wire rack to cool.
11.If you want to thread ribbon in the hearts ,using a skewer pierce a hole in the top of the heart whilst cookie is hot.
12. Once cooled thread a ribbon through the hole.
Serve heart chocolate chip valentine cookies with a piping hot cup of coffee.

You may like:
Coconut and mixed nut barfi 
Submitting to:
Lets Cook/Bake for valentine event by

Tuesday 12 February 2013

Pasta Bake

Pasta penne baked in a spicy tomato sauce with a delicious cheesy topping,



240 grams / 8 oz uncooked pasta penne
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon olive oil
2 litres Water

Arrabbiata Sauce:

60 grams / 2 oz pre cooked sweet corn kernels
60 grams / 2 oz mixed peppers red /green / yellow diced
1 small onion finely diced
60 grams / 2 oz courgettes finely diced
250 ml passata (sieved tomatoes)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
2 teaspoons dried Italian spice (oregano)
½ teaspoon black pepper powder
2 chillies finely chopped
1 clove garlic finely chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
 3 oz cheddar cheese


1. In a pan heat the olive oil and add the onions and garlic. Sauté till translucent.
2. Add the passata and cook sauce for 2-3 minutes.
3. Add the peppers, sweet corn, courgettes to the tomato sauce and cook till vegetables are tender.
4. Add the salt and pepper, Italian spice, chillies and sugar and simmer sauce on low heat till sauce thickens. Remove from heat and keep aside.
5. Heat water in a large saucepan when it comes to boil, add 1 teaspoon salt and the penne pasta.
6. Reduce heat to simmer and cook pasta until al dente.
7. Drain the pasta and return it to saucepan, add 1 teaspoon olive oil and stir it into the pasta.Add the tomato sauce and mix well.
8.Transfer the pasta to an oven proof dish and top with the grated cheese. Place the dish under a preheated grill  for 3-4 minutes until cheese melts and starts to brown.
Serve pasta with salad

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Submitting to:
Flavours of Italy , event by guest hosted by Divya's Culinary journey.

Friday 1 February 2013

Beetroot Relish

Sweetness of the beetroot and the tang from the lemon makes this relish delicious and tasty.


2 medium raw beetroots
1/4 small  white cabbage
1 tablespoon brown sugar
Juice of half lemon
1/2  tablespoon  sunflower oil
1 green chilli finely diced.
1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 red dried chilli
1/2 teaspoon salt


1. Remove the core from the cabbage and shred it finely.
2. Peel and grate the beetroot.
3.Add oil in a pan when it heats up, add the cumin seeds and dried red chilli, once  the cumin starts to crackle add the grated beetroot and cabbage.
4. Stir fry till both vegetables start to wilt but still retain their crunch, add the sugar, chillies, lemon juice and salt and stir fry for 2 more minutes.
5. Transfer to a serving dish.
Serve as a side dish to a main meal, alternatively use it as a sandwich filling.

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Papaya Salsa

The beet root used in this recipe was one of the ingredients that was in my Organic Fruit and Veg box sent to me by Riverford Organic farms.

Event Announcement ~Lets Cook / Bake for Valentine

Time is too slow for those who wait,
 too swift for those who fear,
too long for those who grieve,
too short for those who rejoice,
 but for those who love, time is eternity. 
 ~Henry Van Dyke~

Saint Valentine's Day, commonly shortened to Valentine's Day, It is an annual commemoration held on February 14 celebrating love and affection between intimate companions. It is traditionally a day on which lovers express their love for each other by presenting flowers, offering confectionery, and sending greeting cards .

February brings us the theme of love, with Valentines day fast approaching, lets create some wonderful culinary delights to shower our loved ones with. Cook or Bake any vegetarian dish (eggs allowed) that is your loved ones favorite and link it up here. 

To Participate:

1.Prepare a dish vegetarian only (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 use 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

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

Add your Lets Cook/Bake for Valentine  Entries here:
Dish Name and Post URL
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