Always time for tea cross stitch

I finished this freebie chart a little while ago and stitched it up onto the hanger provided.

Which I thought looked good hung in my study.

Then I was in need of a quick card for a friend, so a quick unpick and remount I had a lovely greetings card in about 5 minutes.

Halloumi french bean and watercress salad recipe

A perfect summer salad, the Halloumi can be cooked on the bar-b-que or done in a frying pan and it’s a matter of minutes to bring it all together in a wonderful colourful taste of summer.

You will need to serve two generous portions.

  • 1 pack of halloumi
  • Halve a bag of Watercress
  • 200g of French beans
  • 4-5 stalks of asparagus
  • A handful of cherry tomatoes halved
  • Half a cumber sliced.
  • 2 tbsp of fresh basil
  • 2tbsp of olive oil.

  1. Place the fresh basil and olive oil in a blender or pestle and mortar and blend.
  2. Slice the halloumi and heat a frying pan or place a sheet of foil onto the bar-b-que.
  3. Blanch the French beans and aspargus in boiling water for 2-3 minutes.
  4. When your frying pan is hot tip the basil oil into the pan and place the halloumi slices on top. Cook for roughly two minutes until golden and then turn.
  5. Cook for a further two minutes on the other side.
  6. Dress your serving dish with the watercress, French beans, asparagus, cucumber and halved cherry tomatoes.
  7. Top with the halloumi slices and tip over any remaining basil oil over the salad.
  8. Serve whilst the halloumi is still warm.

Gluten free Carrot and Orange soup recipe

Gluten free Carrot and Orange soup recipe
Carrot and Orange

600g carrots
1 medium potato
1 small onion
2 medium oranges
25g butter
2 teaspoons sugar
1 litre Gluten free vegetable stock
150ml pot double
  1. Peel and slice the carrots and
  2. Peel and chop the onion.
  3. Zest and juice the oranges.
  4. Melt the butter in a large pan.
  5. Add the sliced carrots and potato,
    and chopped onion, and stir well to make sure they’re all coated in the
  6. Cover the pan and cook over a very
    low heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent the vegetables
    from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
  7. Add the sugar and stock.
  8. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat,
    cover and simmer for 15 minutes.
  9. Add the orange zest and juice.
  10. Purée the soup in a blender or food
  11. Add 100ml double cream and reheat – but
    don’t allow it to boil.
  12. Pour the soup into bowls and add a
    swirl of double cream and a generous sprinkling of black pepper.

Vegetable couscous salad recipe

Vegetable couscous salad
A great packed lunch option for two.
175ml water, boiling
1 vegetable stock cube
100g couscous
1 medium tomato
1 spring onion
¼ cucumber
½ yellow pepper
4 dried apricots
1 x 15ml spoon parsley
2 x 15ml spoons low fat dressing
1. Make up the
stock by dissolving the stock cube in the boiling water.
2. Pour the stock over the couscous in a
large bowl.
3. Fluff with a fork and leave to stand for
5 minutes.
4. Chop the tomato and cucumber into small
5. Slice the pepper into small strips.
6. Slice the dried apricots and parsley into
small pieces.
7. Add all the vegetables to the couscous and
snip the spring onions into the bowl using the scissors.
8. Stir everything together.
9. Add the dressing.

Citrus Tart recipe


Sweet Pastry                                                                        For the Filling
225g plain flour                                                                   4
large eggs
110g butter                                                                          125g
caster sugar
25g caster sugar                                                                3
medium oranges
2 egg yolks                                                                           1
unwaxed lemon
½ teaspoon salt                                                                  150g
pot double cream
1 tablespoon iced water                                                 100g
granulated sugar
  1. Heat oven to 200°C, fan oven 180°C,
    Gas Mark 6. 
  2.  Separate the eggs.
  3. Sift the flour, sugar and salt into a
    mixing bowl. Rub the butter lightly into flour,
    lifting the mixture to add air, until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
    Mix the egg yolks and water together in a separate bowl. Make a well in
    the middle of the flour mixture and stir in the egg yolks using a palette
    knife, until a soft but not sticky pastry is formed. Knead lightly on a
    lightly floured surface for a few seconds to form a smooth, firm
    dough. Wrap in cling-film and leave to rest in
    the refrigerator for 30 minutes before rolling out.
  4. Roll out pastry and
    line a flan tin.
  5. Chill for 20 mins, covered with cling film.
  6. Bake the pastry case
    blind: Bake on a
    baking sheet for 10 mins until the sides are crisp and set. Remove from
    oven and carefully lift paper and beans out. Reduce the oven temperature to 180°C, fan oven 160°C, Gas Mark 4.
  7. Making the filling: Whisk
    the eggs and caster sugar together until evenly mixed. Finely grate the
    zest of two of the oranges and half of the lemon. Squeeze out the juice
    and measure 100ml orange juice and 2tbsp lemon juice. Add the zest and
    measured juice to the eggs and gently whisk in with the double cream. Pour
    into the flan case.
  8. Bake in the oven for
    35 minutes or until just set. Leave to cool.
  9. While the flan is
    cooking, remove the zest of the remaining orange with zester. Put the granulated
    sugar in a small pan with 150ml water and heat gently until dissolved. Add
    the zest and simmer for 10 minutes or until translucent. Drain and cool on
    a plate.
  10. Top the cooled tart with candied peel.