Monday, 30 June 2014

Spoonflower Fabric of the week - Black blossom

Black Blossom fabric now available to buy in my Spoonflower shop.



Sunday, 29 June 2014

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.

Friday, 27 June 2014

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.

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Gluten free Carrot and Orange soup recipe

Gluten free Carrot and Orange soup recipe

Carrot and Orange Soup                                                                                            


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 cream


  1. Peel and slice the carrots and potato.
  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 butter.
  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 processor.
  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.

Monday, 23 June 2014

Spoonflower Fabric of the week - Yellow ted

Yellow Ted fabric now available to buy in my Spoonflower shop.

You can also have a go at stitching a co-ordinating cross stitch pattern for free



Tuesday, 17 June 2014

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 chunks.
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.

Monday, 16 June 2014

Spoonflower Fabric of the week - Crab

Crab fabric is now available to buy in my Spoonflower shop.



Sunday, 15 June 2014

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.

Wednesday, 11 June 2014

Chocolate trifle recipe


3 double chocolate chip muffins
200g dark chocolate
1 tin of mixed fruit
2 tbsp jam
250g mascarpone
400g fresh custard 
275ml whipping cream


  1. Slice muffins in half horizontally and cover in jam.
  2. Sandwich the muffins back together
  3. Slice vertically into 4 pieces
  4. Lay these at the bottom of the serving bowl
  5. With a fork gently stab the muffins
  6. Make the custard and leave to cool
  7. Reserve 5og of chocolate for decoration
  8. Melt the rest of the chocolate
  9. Let the chocolate cool for a few minutes
  10. While that is happening add the mascarpone into a bowl and beat to soften it
  11. Add custard to mascarpone and whisk together
  12. Add the chocolate and continue to whisk until it is mixed together thoroughly
  13. Open and drain the tin of fruit and add to the muffins
  14. Then add the chocolate custard
  15. Then whip the cream to soft peaks and add onto the trifle
  16. To decorate grate left over chocolate onto the top

Monday, 9 June 2014

Spoonflower Fabric of the week - Knicker Bocker glory

Knicker Bocker glory fabric is now available to buy in my Spoonflower shop, perfect for Summer sewing.



Thursday, 5 June 2014

Paul Hollywood - How to bake, flat breads

I was bought Paul Hollywood's how to bake book for Christmas and I have been slowly working my way through the recipes. This is my attempt at his flat breads. They came out great apart from the fact, however hard I tried I could not get them round like they were in the picture. I loved the flavour of them, it was almost like eating doughnuts as they had a lovely sweet taste when eaten still warm straight out of the pan. In the book Paul suggests that you could freeze some, there was hardly any time for them to sit on the plate, let alone make it too the freezer. This is definitely a recipe I'll be returning to time and time again.

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Banana and caramel trifle recipe


3 medium bananas                                                
8 trifle sponges 

For topping:
50g pecan nuts
275ml double cream
1 pint custard
For sauce:                
150g golden syrup  
50g butter
75g soft brown sugar
50g granulated sugar
150ml double cream
A few drops of vanilla extract


  1. Place syrup, butter and sugar in a pan and heat it over a gentle heat for about 5 minute, making sure you stir the mixture
  2. Slowly stir in double cream and vanilla essence until it is fully combined
  3. Make up the custard according to your packets instructions. 
  4. Split trifle sponges in half length ways
  5. Cover in butterscotch and remake the sponge shape by sandwiching them
  6. Cut them the other way into 3 and place them on the bottom of the bowl.
  7. Whisk the cream to soft peaks
  8. Slice the bananas and place on top of sponges
  9. Add a thick layer of custard
  10. Add a layer of cream
  11. Add pecan nuts for decoration.

Monday, 2 June 2014

Spoonflower Fabric of the week - Bucket and spade

Bucket and Spade fabric now available in my Spoonflower shop. Perfect fabric for summer. Think picnic blankets, beach bags, deckchair cushions, decorating your beach hut the possibilities are endless.



Sunday, 1 June 2014

Lightening Mcqueen racing cake

It was my husband's birthday party recently and I asked my eldest what sort of cake I should make him. He said make him a racing cake. So keeping it as simple as possible I iced a sponge cake with ready roll icing and added a grey race track down the middle. I finished it off with racing light lollipops and borrowed my eldest's toy cars for the top. My husband was pleased but my eldest was filled with jealousy. He obviously thought the cake was too good for him!


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