I Won A Competition!!!

For those of you that didn't know I am an avid enterer of competitions, my philosophy being 'You have to be in it to win it!' So with that in mind I entered the Sainsbury 'Delicious' Magazines competition to in a Gabbiano Hamper. And I recieved the email saying that I had one!! I was well chuffed and it beat the usual spam you get in your inbox!!! They are going to contact me for delivery but I will be getting the following:

Tuscan cookery pack, which includes: A case of Castello Di Gabbiano Chianti DOCG 2006 (6 x 75cl bottles), a case of Castello Di Gabbiano Pinot Grigio Delle Venezie 2007 (6 x 75cl bottles), a case of Castello Di Gabbiano Toscana Rosé (6 x 75cl bottles), a Return to Tuscany cookbook by Giancarlo and Katie Caldesi, a Gabbiano cook’s apron, a bottle of Castello di Gabbiano extra virgin olive oil (Olio Extra Vergine di Oliva) and a bottle of Delizia del Castello Balsamic Vinegar.

I am WELL chuffed and I am looking forward to all the the things I will be able to cook. Never tried Tuscan food before so I am looking forward to that!!!
Hey! I'd love to know if people are using my recipes!! If you are leave a wee comment on the recipes post! Also, why not head back and let me know how you got on!!?

Review - Top Secret Recipes

Top Secret Recipes - Todd Wilbur

Have you been here yet? Well, if you like Fast Food, and Lord knows I do, then this is the site for you. Todd Wilbur shows us how to recreate the tastes of all your favourite Fast Food Recipes, at home! From the McDonalds Big Mac to Crispy Creme doughnuts there is something for everyone.
Why do I bring this up now? Well, I decided to test him out, something simple, something straight forward - The Big Mac. Off down the supermarket I went clutching my shopping list and after some strange looks from passers-by as I cried 'What and Where is Sweet Pickle Relish? - Lord have mercy!!' I had my bag of goodies.
The recipe asked for the sauce to be left for several hours or overnight and I have to admit it got about a hour at most before being burgerised! I followed his instructions even on how to build the burgers before presenting them to the Husband - 'Burger Mc Rosie Macs' I announced (or something similar). And so to the tasting - -
Wonderful!! The sauce didn't taste like anything, in fact it tasted like vinegary mayonnaise when it was just in the bowl, but once it was on the burger.... WoW! It was like eating a Big Mac! Even the Husband liked them and he is the eater of many a Big Mac. I will definately be making these again! Want to try it out? Go Here for the full recipe - McDonalds Sauce
So whats the site all about. Well, the site, which is wonderfully laid out and whose moving banner I shall steal for this blog :), is very easily navigated and broken down into obvious sections. The site lists all the current recipes available, some are free and some you have to pay a minimal 79cents for. The recipes are easy to understand, in plain English and show that they have been written by a self confesed non-cook. It also has the added benefit of a comments section on each recipe so you can see how other people got on and any advice or tips they have for achieving, or in some cases improving the recipe!
You are also able to buy the various cookery books, containing the recipes and a few more, I am definately in the market for one and I think everyone should have one on the shelf. What's even better is that you can see the ingredients, so unlike buying from a local fast food resturant you know exactly what is in the mix!!
I definately recommend you take a look, you will be more than pleasantly surprised and you will be amazed at how you too can make fast food favourites in your own home!!

Fish Pie

  • 3 medium potatoes
  • 450g cod fillets
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 40g margarine
  • 40g flour
  • 1/2tsp mustard
  • 1 pt milk
  • salt and pepper
  • 30g low fat cream cheese
  • breadcrumbs from 2 slices
  • 2 tbsp sweetcorn

  1. Slice potatoes into rounds and par-boil.
  2. Arrange fish a serving dish and cover in the lemon juice. Cook on HIGH in the microwave for approx. 4mins until fish flakes easily.
  3. Lightly fry the onion until soft, add the sweetcorn and heat through.
  4. Melt the margarine in a saucepan and add the flour, stir to form a thick smooth paste. Add half the milk and stir until smooth. Add the rest of the milk and combine well.
  5. Add the cream cheese to the sauce and mix well.
  6. Flake the fish in the serving dish and add the onion and sweetcorn.
  7. Lay the potatoes on the top and pour over the sauce. Sprinkle on the breadcrumbs and bake in the oven (190oC) for about 20 mins, or until top is browned and it is piping hot.
  8. Serve
This recipe serves four and works out at 7 1/2 points per serving. As you can see we ate it with a nice fresh salad. Another little tip, I Love croutons with my salad so a healthy aternative, toast some bread, chop into cubes and crisp them up in a frying pan with a couple of sprays of cooking oil, season with salt and pepper! Yummy!!

Hey! I'd love to know if people are using my recipes!! If you are leave a wee comment on the recipes post! Also, why not head back and let me know how you got on!!?

Fruit Sponge

  • 2 eggs
  • 55g caster sugar
  • 1tbsp finely grated lemon zest
  • 85g self-raising flour
  • 1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • Selection of fruits of your choice - I used and apple, a satsuma and a kiwi
  • 100g low fat yoghurt
  • Icing sugar for dusting

  1. Preheat the oven to 220oC. Lightly grease and line the base of a 9 inch cake tin.
  2. Break the eggs into a bowl with the caster sugar and the lemon rind. Place the bowl over a saucepan of gently simmering water and whisk until the bowl leaves a trail when it is dragged lightly across the surface. Remove from the heat and whisk until cool.
  3. Add the flour and stir very lightly, taking care not to overmix. Add the lemon juice and stir lightly then pour into the prepared cake tin. Tap lightly to remove any air bubbles.
  4. Bake for 8 - 10 minutes or until the top springs back lightly when pressed. Remove from the oven and leave to cool for 10 minutes before turning out, discard the paper.
  5. Prepare the fruit.
  6. Place the cake on a serving place, pour on the yoghurt and spread evenly. Arrange the fruit on top.
  7. Makes 10 slices.
We had this as a light pudding tonight and really enjoyed it. Definately going to try it again with summer berries. I am going to attempt a hot version soon so watch this space!! By the way for you Weight Watchers out there this worked out at 1 1/2 points per slice, the points may vary if you change the fruits however.

Hey! I'd love to know if people are using my recipes!! If you are leave a wee comment on the recipes post! Also, why not head back and let me know how you got on!!?

Turkey Meatballs

Hey, another low fat recipe for you, I am serving this one with a Sweet Red Pepper Sauce and wholemeal Pasta! Enjoy!!

  • 1 red pepper
  • 2 slices of wholemeal bread
  • 500g turkey breast mince
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 100g sweetcorn
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 400g can of chopped tomatoes
  • 300g wholewheat pasta

  1. Preheat the grill to high. Cut the pepper in half and remove the core then griil, cut-side down for 5 - 8 minutes until the skin is blackened and blistered. Transfer to a plate, cover with a tea-towel and set aside to cool.
  2. Put the bread into a food processor and make fine breadcrumbs (you can, like me, use your hands to do this if you haven't got a food processor). Add the turkey mince, egg, sweetcorn, parsley and season. Whizz it again (or smoosh it up with your hands!!). Shape into 20 balls.
  3. Heat the oil in a frying papn and cook the onion for 5 minutes until soft. Add the can of tomatoes and then add half a can's worth of water. Bring to a simmer then carefully place in the meatballs.
  4. Skin the pepper, cut into strips and add to the pan. Part cover with a lid and simmer very gently for 20 minutes, or until the meatballs are cooked through.
  5. Cook the pasta and serve.
This recipe serves four people (5 balls each).

Had this tonight and for once remembered to photo it before eating it!! We really enjoyed this and although it doesn't look much when you first serve it out it is definately filling!!

Happy Cooking Folks!!!

Hey! I'd love to know if people are using my recipes!! If you are leave a wee comment on the recipes post! Also, why not head back and let me know how you got on!!?

Weekend Tip - Cooking Rice

Wanting perfect rice everytime!!

If you are like me you probably end up with either loads of water left in your saucepan, even after the rice is cooked. Or not enough water and one minute it is fine and then the next minute it's all burnt and stuck to the bottom of the pan?

Sound familiar?

Well, here's a great wee trick that will give you perfect rice every time!!

Use twice as much water as rice. I find this easiest by weighing out the rice I require then putting it into a cup or glass, make a mental note of how full the glass is. Put the rice in the pan, fill the glass with water to the line you remember, put in the pan. Do it again. Put the lid on the saucepan and cooked as you would! Light fluffy rice and no watery left-over!!!

Hey! I'd love to know if people are using my recipes!! If you are leave a wee comment on the recipes post! Also, why not head back and let me know how you got on!!?