Friday, 19 June 2015

Healthy Fruity Breakfast Granola

Healthy Fruity Breakfast Granola


2 tbsp vegetable oil
125ml maple syrup
2 tbsp honey
1 tsp vanilla essence
500g muesli base
200g seed mix (the bag I use is from Lidl & contains 55% sunflower seeds, 40% pumpkin seeds and 5% pine nuts)
100g cranberries
100g diced pineapple
100g diced papaya


  1. Preheat oven to 150C/Gas Mark 2.
  2. Mix together in a bowl the vegetable oil, maple syrup, honey and vanilla essence.
  3. Add 300g of the muesli base and the seed mix to the syrupy mix.
  4. Spread over 2 baking trays and heat in the oven for 15 minutes.
  5. Add the cranberries to the half baked trays of granola and mix in.
  6. Heat for a further 15 minutes.
  7. Allow to cool.
  8. Scrap off into a large bowl and add the rest of the muesli base, papaya and pineapple.

Enjoy with cold milk on a lovely summers morning as a healthy breakfast.

Monday, 15 June 2015

What is wrong with my basil?

Ok, calling all fellow gardeners...

...what is wrong with my basil?

It had been in the conservatory & I wondered if the leaves were burning cos it was getting so hot in there with the beautiful weather so I put the plants outside and browning leaves appears to be getting worse. Is this some kind of basil disease?

Friday, 12 June 2015

Lemon Meringue Pie


The Pre-baked Lemon Meringue Pie


75g butter
175g digestive biscuits
25g Demerara sugar


190g caster sugar
2 lemons, zest and juice
1 egg yolk
1 tbsp cornflour, dissolved in a little milk
175ml boiling water


2 egg whites
pinch of salt
80g caster sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 150C/Gas Mark 2.
  2. Crush the biscuits finely (the easiest way of doing this is putting them in a plastic bag & use a rolling pin) and mix in the sugar.
  3. Melt the butter and add the biscuits.
  4. Press the biscuits into the bottom and up the sides of a pie dish.
  5. Place in the fridge to firm until it's required to add the filling.
  6. Place the sugar, lemon zest and juice in a pan.
  7. Whisk together the egg yolk and cornflour and add to the pan with the boiling water.
  8. Simmer over a low heat, stirring constantly until it has thickened.
  9. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
  10. Whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks form, continue whisking and add the salt and caster sugar tablespoon by tablespoon.
  11. Place the filling on the biscuit base, top with meringue and bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes or until the meringue is a light golden brown.

Serve with cream or ice cream either warm or cold.

Friday, 5 June 2015

Cottage Pie


1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tbsp mixed herbs
500g beef mince
1 courgette, finely chopped
2 carrots, finely chopped
1 tin of tomatoes
1 tbsp tomato puree
1/2 tsp chilli flakes
1 cup of beef stock made with 1 oxo cube
black pepper

3 large potatoes, peeled & chopped
2 handfuls of grated cheese
splash of milk
black pepper
knob of butter


  1. Preheat oven to 180C or Gas Mark 4.
  2. Boil the potatoes in a pan until soft.
  3. Heat the oil in another large pan and gently fry the beef mince, once beginning to brown add the onion, garlic, herbs and courgettes. Continue cooking until the onions are soft.
  4. Add the carrots, tinned tomatoes, tomato puree, chilli flakes and beef stock and season with black pepper as necessary and stir well.
  5. Simmer for 15-20 minutes until the carrots and nicely cooked through.
  6. Once the potatoes are cooked, add the butter, milk and a handful of cheese to the pan and mash the potatoes until smooth and creamy. Season with black pepper.
  7. Place the beef sauce into the bottom of an oven proof dish and top with mashed potatoes. Sprinkle the remainder of the grated cheese on top on the potatoes and heat in the oven for 20-30 minutes or until the cheese is golden on top.

Serve with some fresh green vegetables.

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