Friday, 31 May 2013

Rhubarb & ginger muffins

Rhubarb & ginger muffin

250g rhubarb
125g butter, melted and cooled
100ml milk
2 eggs
60g plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
125g caster sugar
3 tbsps raisins
3 pieces of stem ginger, chopped finely

Muffin mix
  1. Preheat oven to Gas Mark 5 or 190C.
  2. Line a muffin tin with paper cases.
  3. Chop rhubarb into cm long pieces.
  4. Pour melted butter & milk into a large bowl & mix in the eggs.
  5. Add the flour, baking powder and sugar and mix together gently.
  6. Stir in the rhubarb, ginger & raisins.
  7. Spoon the mix into the paper cases.
  8. Bake for 15-20 minutes until golden.
  9. Leave to cool slightly, can be served warm or cold.

Muffins in the oven

Wednesday, 29 May 2013

My Town

This month's photography theme for Friendship Vignettes is...

                 ..."My town", which is...


Bradford City Park & City Hall

Bradford Urban Garden

Bradford Cathedral

Monday, 27 May 2013

Lazy Susan...a wedding present

It will be our 2 year wedding anniversary tomorrow so I thought I would share with you one of our creative personalised wedding presents.

What does it say on this lazy susan?


And if I spin it around, what does it say now?


Can you see them both if I show you the picture on its side?

Ruth & Luke

Very clever isn't it!!!

Friday, 24 May 2013


Great to make quickly to serve alongside other Mexican meals or on a buffet.

1 large bag of any tortilla chips or Doritos (the milder flavours eg ready salted work well)
Salsa (optional)
Guacamole (optional)
Chilli (if you have some going spare after making enchiladas - optional)
Sour cream (optional)
Grated cheese

  1. Pour tortilla chips onto a baking tray or pizza tray.
  2. Add a few spoons of the optional ingredients (salsa, guacamole, sour cream or chilli) to the top of the chips
  3. Cover in lots of grated cheese
  4. Heat under the grill for a few minutes until the cheese has melted.



Wednesday, 22 May 2013

BRADFORD - Little Germany

There is an area of Bradford to the east of the city centre called Little Germany. It is full of large, stone Victorian warehouses which the Jewish merchants spent large amounts of money building in the 19th century. Many of the merchants came from Germany hence the name "Little Germany". Many of these large warehouse buildings remain and have been converted into modern offices or pent-house flats.

On Chapel Street, there is a stone carved armchair and grandfather's clock. 

My husband, Luke in Little Germany c2007

Monday, 20 May 2013


I am a Christian and believe that God created the world. I cannot help but thank God for the beauty he has created in these beautiful tulips, which I bought reduced from the supermarket! They are brightening up our living room at present.

Beautiful aren't they?

Friday, 17 May 2013

Meatball Pasta Bake

1 tbsp oil
12 beef meatballs
1 onion, chopped finely
250g mushrooms, sliced
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 tin of tomatoes
2 pepper, chopped
2 carrot, chopped
200ml beef stock (1 beef OXO cube dissolved in boiling water)
1 tbsp of tomato puree
300g pasta shapes
150-200g grated cheese
1 tin of garden peas (Optional)
1 tin of sweetcorn (Optional)


  1. Heat the oven to Gas Mark 4 or 180C.
  2. Heat the oil in a pan and fry the meatballs, onion and garlic until onions are soft.
  3. Add the mushrooms to the pan and fry also until the meatballs are cooked through and the mushrooms are soft.
  4. Add the pepper, carrots, tinned tomatoes, tomato puree & beef stock to the pan (and any optional ingredients).
  5. Allow the pan to simmer for 15-20 minutes until reduced.
  6. In the meantime, boil the pasta shapes for 10 minutes.
  7. Mix the pasta into the meatball sauce and pour it all into a pyrex casserole dish.
  8. Top with grated cheese and place in the oven for 15-20 minutes until the cheese is nicely browned. 

Serve with garlic bread and/or green salad.

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

BRADFORD - The Midland Hotel

The hotel was constructed by the Midland Railway Company who owned the station next door, known as Forster Square Railway Station. Construction of the building was started in 1885 and it took five years to complete it.

It is still known as the Midland Hotel and functions as a hotel today. It is presently a Grade 2 listed building.

The Midland Hotel, Bradford

I have been inside on a few occasions the most memorable being for my Hen Party where we enjoyed "Afternoon Tea" together in one of their suites. It is beautiful inside and decorated very elegantly, a great place for lady's to share afternoon tea together.

Monday, 13 May 2013


Last year in the Autumn I bought some Aubergine seeds in the sale at Asda and have been waiting until the Spring to plant them.

It has to be said I am not the most green fingered person ever, so when I first saw some shoots appearing I was very pleased and proud of my little plants.

I now have 7 little plants to carefully water and feed and hopefully, weather permitting we will have some aubergines to eat in the Autumn...

My aubergine seedlings

Aubergine seedlings

Friday, 10 May 2013

Cadbury's Dairy Milk presents... Marvellous Creations Jelly Popping Candy Shells

This weeks FOODY FRIDAY has a short story attached to it...

If you know us or have read all of my blog you will remember that last summer we spent travelling around New Zealand for 10 weeks...


...whilst we were there we discovered Cadbury's Marvellous Creations Jelly Popping Candy Shells and it's AMAZING!

Cadbury's Marvellous Creations

I am generally not the biggest fan of Cadbury's chocolate but this is great!

I was very happy when I noticed that WHSmith at work advertising this chocolate so I went on a hunt to find a big bar in the shop....YUMMY!!!!!!

Wednesday, 8 May 2013

BRADFORD - The Urban Garden

In 2005, there were plans a foot for a huge new shopping centre development in the city, over the site of the original township of Bradford and the Bradford Beck near the Cathedral.

Work was started in 2005 with the demolition of the Broadway Shopping Centre, an archaelogical dig of the area and the site was excavated and prepared for the start of the new development. Unfortunately the work came to a halt overnight with the beginnings of a national recession.

The site was left as a huge HOLE for a few years before the Council developed some of the site into an Urban Garden.

Bradford Urban Garden

Graffiti Walls which hide the HOLE and the stopped development work behind

I do like the Urban Garden as it has created a space in the City Centre which allows some of the older more ornate buildings to be seen which have been hidden away by large buildings for many years.

The Cathedral from the Urban Garden

The Wool Exchange from the Urban Garden

The Midland Hotel, Bradford
There are talks that 2013 might be the year that works recommences on the site but we only time will tell, I do hope whatever is built here reflects the beautiful buildings which surround it.

Monday, 6 May 2013

Green Leaves & Trees

A good friend of mine has recently had some of his work printed onto greetings cards to sell. I think they're really clever designs and look AMAZING on the mantlepiece as a birthday, christmas or thankyou card, etc.

He sells his cards for £3 each or the whole set for £10 on Etsy - Green Leaves and Trees, take a look at the link to view more information behind the artist and the cards available.

Friday, 3 May 2013

Cheesy pasta with spinach & sausages

Today's recipe is one of my all time favourites, my mum used to make it lots of us when we were children and so when I went to university I took this recipe with me!

Cheesy pasta with spinach & sausages

25g Butter
25g Plain Flour
600ml Milk
150g Grated cheese
300g Spinach, chopped
250g Pasta
8 Sausages
100g breadcrumbs

  1. Grill sausages (as per pack instructions) for approximately 20 minutes, turning occasionally.
  2. Boil the pasta (as per pack instructions) for approximately 10 minutes.
  3. Melt the butter on a low heat.
  4. Once melted take off the heat temporarily and add the flour, mix together well to form a thick dough (see photos below).
  5. Add a little milk and whisk well to form a paste.
  6. Place pan back on to a medium-low heat. Constantly whisking whilst slowly adding three quarters of the milk.
  7. Once slowly simmering the sauce should start thickening (after about 10 minutes), add about half of the grated cheese and stir together, if the sauce becomes too thick add more milk, a little at a time.
  8. Cook spinach by placing in the microwave for a minute.
  9. Drain off as much liquid as possible and add to cheese sauce.
  10. Mix the cooked pasta into the cheese sauce.
  11. Mix the left-over grated cheese with the breadcrumbs.
  12. Place the pasta and sauce into a Pyrex bowl, and top with the cheese/breadcrumb mix.
  13. Place in the oven or under the grill for a few minutes until the topping has browned.
  14. Serve with the cooked sausages (if vegetarian leave sausages out).

4) Mix melted butter with the flour

5 & 6) Add the milk and whisk well whilst gently heating

The finished product!

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

BRADFORD - The National Media Museum

We are really fortunate to host the National Media Museum and Imax Cinema complex in Bradford city centre. It was previously known as the National Museum of Photography, Film and Television.

National Media Museum, Bradford
It is situated between Bradford Central Library and the Ice Skating Rink on Prince's Way and there is free entry to the exhibitions although entrance to the cinema's is not free.

My favourite part of the museum is the area where you can sit in a small booth with your friends and choose any TV programme from the past to watch an episode of. They have a large catalogue of what is available to watch and usually only one episode of a series is available to view, but it can take you back to your childhood with Muffin the Mule and the likes.

The Bradford International Film Festival is hosted here annually.

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