Monday, 28 February 2011

Recipe- Cherry Pie

I've been wanting to bake a Cherry Pie for a while and this was the time to do it! I actually made it on Sunday night but we were so stuffed from dinner we saved it for tonight instead. This recipe is tweaked a little from Cherry Menlove so the thanks should go to her :-)

Cherry Pie- Serves 6 (well probably only 4 in my portions!)


1 Packet of sweet shortcrust pastry (feel free to make it but shop bought is fine)
1 Punnet of cherries (de-stoned and halved)
1 tin of tapioca
2 tablespoons of caster sugar
1 teaspoon of vanilla essence
1 teaspoon of almond essence
Handful of flaked almonds
1 egg beaten for brushing


1. Preheat the oven to 180 c

2. Roll out your pastry on a lightly floured surface to a size that will fit your pie dish. You'll need a bit left over to do the lattice top so keep that to one side. Gently line the pie dish with the pastry.

3. Layer the cherries on the bottom of the pastry dish- you just need a single layer.

4. In a bowl mix together the tapioca, sugar, almond essence and vanilla essence and then pour this over the cherries evenly.

5. Roll out your left over pastry and cut it into strips and place onto the pie into a lattice design. Brush with the beaten egg and sprinkle over the flaked almonds.

6. Place into the over for 30 minutes and then turn the oven up to 200 c for the last 20-30 mins. Keep checking the pie as you don't want it to burn but just been golden brown on top. Serve with cream/ice cream or custard!

This is a very easy pie to make and looks like you've put a lot more effort in than you actually have!

Happy Anniversary to my wonderful Phil

This is just a quick post to say Happy Anniversary to Phil. I Love you more than words can say.

Phil and I had our first date on 29th February 2008 so it was a leap year. So we usually celebrate it on the 28th or the 1st. So next year we will actually get to have it on the actual day and it will technically only be our 1st Anniversary!

We went out last night to The Great Western Arms for an Anniversary meal. It's a lovely cosy pub with the roaring fire going. And the service has always been great when I got there.

Just wanted to share what we had to eat (we both had exactly the same-so cliche). I cannot tell you how amazing the roast was. Every single morsel of it was divine. I can't wait for another now!! And at the moment all of their tips are going to the Christchurch Earthquake fund.

Warm bread with olive oil and hummus

Chicken liver Pate with Cumberland sauce and red onion chutney

Mixed Roast Dinner - had beef, chicken and pork with crackling (ahhmazzzing)

And a couple of pictures of me and my gorgeous Phil. I'll be back later with a recipe post.


Sunday, 27 February 2011

Spanish Chicken with Chorizo and Potatoes

We have this a good few times a month as it's super easy, using only one pan and is fairly cheap to make. This is from Nigella's "Kitchen". I use less ingredients as it's for 2 of us and i've also used lemon zest if I haven't got an orange and it still works great.


2 x 15ml tablespoons regular olive oil

12 chicken thighs (bone in, with skin)

750g chorizo sausages, whole if baby ones, or cut into 4cm chunks if regular-sized

1kg new potatoes, halved

2 red onions, peeled and roughly chopped

2 teaspoons dried oregano grated

zest 1 orange


Preheat the oven to 220°C/gas mark 7. Put the oil in the bottom of 2 shallow roasting tins, 1 tablespoon in each. Rub the skin of the chicken in the oil, then turn skin-side up, 6 pieces in each tin.

Divide the chorizo sausages and the new potatoes between the 2 tins. Sprinkle the onion and the oregano over, then grate the orange zest over the contents of the 2 tins.

Cook for 1 hour, but after 30 minutes, swap the top tray with the bottom tray in the oven and baste the contents with the orange-coloured juices.

Serves: 6

Spring Clean 2011 has begun

Firstly Hello! This is my first post on this blog so bear with me! I used to blog on A Modern Girls Guide to Losing the Flab but wanted to have a blog for all things baking, cooking, crafts and general housewifely duties! Anyway on to the post!

My kitchen looked like this earlier

My first job on my spring cleaning To Do list was to clean the fridges. So out came everything and I threw away food we didn't need or was past it's best. I then took out all the drawers and compartments and cleaned with hot soapy water. Inside the fridge I used a damp cloth and bicarbonate of Soda and then dried everything with a tea towel. It's very important to not leave it damp. Then everything was put back inside- nice and fresh!

Other things I did today to begin the spring clean was dust all my vintage china collection, wiping all the picture frames, skirting boards and light switches in the kitchen. I also cleaned the outside of the cupboards with a damp cloth and a sugar soup solution (they sell this in a spray bottle in B&Q.

So I've now started and need to make a To Do list for all the other things that need doing both for the house and the garden. Next room on my hit list is our 3rd bedroom which is where the computer and cross trainer is. It's a bit of a no-man's land so I need to do a good sort out. I'll save that for another post.

I also made some sweet potato soup with some sweet potatoes that needed using. It should do me a couple of days for lunch at work. All it had was a chopped onion, carrot cubed, 3 medium sized sweet potatoes peeled and cubed, pint of vegetable stock and salt and pepper. Simmered for 15 minutes and blended. Soups are great to make when you have left over vegetables at the end of the week. My general rule is use an onion, carrot and stock as a base and then chuck in whatever you have. Yummy! I'll be sure to share more recipes.

It's mine and Phil's anniversary tomorrow (actually it the 29th February but there isn't one this year) but we are going out for a meal tonight to celebrate but I've made the pudding for us to have when we come back. A Cherry Pie- the recipe will be on the next post!

So here is my first post. And here's to many more! I hope to hear from lots of you so leave a comment if you can. Sharing tips or advice would be great :-)