WIAW #9 Winter Warmers

 WIAW

Tis the season to eat winter warmers, do you all agree? Happy Wednesday, it’s exactly four weeks until Christmas Day, how do we all feel about that? This weeks WIAW is all about the winter warming foods that I have been eating and will most probably be eating for the next few months. Big shout out to our lovely host Jenn over at Peas and Crayons go on over and check out her blog along with other WIAW bloggers…you know you want to 🙂

Breakfast – Porridge Oats made with Soy Milk topped with linseed and berries and a dollop of honey

Porridge

Lunch was the delicious and so easy Cauliflower and Butternut Squash Soup

Cauliflower and Butternut Squash Soup

Dinner – was an outing to our local Indian, it’s called Indiana and is so tasty every time we go. Prepare yourself for excessive salivation! I had Chilli Paneer to start…

Chilli Paneer

 I ordered Tandoori Mixed Grill with Cauli Bhaji for my main course (half of which I brought home and is in my fridge waiting to be finished)

Tandoori Mixed Grill

Cauli Bhaji

Cauli Bhaji

Drinks and snacks : Big mug of tea & plums

Mug of Tea

Hot Lemon Water

Hot lemon water

A couple of glasses of vino with dinner – not actual photo 🙂

Wine

So as Christmas Day this year falls on a Wednesday what will happen to WIAW – is there any need for posts as everyone will be eating the same thing?? LOL

I for one will be WAAAAAY too busy to post on Christmas Day as I am having the family over to our house for dinner again this year. I will update what will be on our menu before Christmas Day and of course there will be photos afterwards.

What will you be doing this time four weeks?

Sundried Tomato & Cheddar Spelt Bread

Sundried tomato and cheddar spelt bread

Sun-dried Tomato & Cheddar Spelt Bread

With December and my FIRST Christmas market stall outing fast approaching I have been cooking and baking quite a bit and not blogging as much, so please accept my apologies! I made 50 jars of my ‘Winter Spiced Apple Chutney’ on Saturday, the house was smelling divine from it. I made a batch two weeks ago and  for taste testing purposes obviously we had to sample it with cheese and crackers, well I have to say it is so good. Its tangy yet sweet, warming and tasty…perfect for cheese boards, meat boards and as an accompaniment to pork ~ hell, its great with everything!

Here is the recipe for one of the breads I will have at my stall on Sunday 8th December in Gorey. It is Sun-dried tomato and cheddar spelt bread..so savoury but kinda sweet from the sun-dried tomatoes. You can of course add herbs to this bread too or make them in to savoury muffins (which I will be doing very soon!)

Makes one loaf

Ingredients

  • 175g / 1 heaped cup Wholemeal Spelt Flour
  • 155g / 1 heaped cup Oats
  • 60g / 1 heaped cup  Wheat Bran
  • 60g / 1/2 cup grated Cheddar Cheese (I like mature cheddar)
  • 1 Tsp Bicarbonate Soda
  • 360ml / 1 1/2 cup Buttermilk

Lets go

  1. Pre-heat Oven to 200c / 400f and spray your bread tin with spray oil
  2. Mix the spelt flour, oats, wheat bran and bicarbonate of soda together in a bowl so it is all combined
  3. Add sun-dried tomatoes and cheddar
  4. Add Buttermilk and mix to make sure all the ingredients are wet (this is a wet mixture) Add more buttermilk if it’s too dry
  5. Put the mixture in to pre-sprayed and bake in the middle of your oven for 45-50 minutes, I always check at around 45 minutes as all ovens are different. The bread is done when you can knock the bottom and you get a hollow sound
  6. Remove to a wire rack to cool completely before cutting

Sundried Tomato Cheddar Spelt Bread

A few questions for you guys….

Are any of you going to have a stall at Christmas markets this year or have done previously?

Any advice for my Christmas Stall?

Have you started Christmas Shopping? Eeeek

WIAW #8 Alicante Style

WIAWbutton

Hi guys and happy Wednesday! Any of you who read last weeks post know that I was in Alicante visiting a very good friend for the weekend so my #WIAW this week is a selection of the mostly gorgeous food I had while over there. I love Spain, absolutely everything about it…the food, the culture, the vino and of course the value for money. It really is so much cheaper than Ireland especially for dining out…which I love to do! I just so happened to get married there last September too 🙂

Big shout out to Jenn, our wonderful host – go check out the other bloggers on WIAW

what i ate wednesday 8Clockwise starting at the top:

Patatas bravas – I’m sure I don’t need to introduce these bad boys – they were so damn tasty. We had these in Benidorm on a day trip there, where I also had the next burger….

Benidorm Burger – I expected this mini burger to be made of beef but it was my fault for not asking. I took a bite in to it and it was sooooooo fishy and I mean over powering taste of fish. I had to eat that mouthful very quickly and munch more of the patata bravas to try get rid of the taste. That was the only thing I didn’t like while in Alicante and as it was a bite of a mini burger I did not dwell on it LOL!

Chicken Croquettes – These were soft on the inside and crunchy on the outside, cheese-y and chicken-y and very tasty! I will be making these over the weekend

Jalapeno Steak Burger (American Burger) – Oh WOW I would love one of these right now! This was a great meal for my last night, the burger was char-grilled and had jalapenos (which I love) salad, ketchup & mayo on the wholemeal bun – I was in heaven! These will also be making an appearance at the weekend in my kitchen.

Russian Salad – We got this with our wine after lunch. What we could taste was potato, carrots, tuna, egg, peas and mayonnaise it was very tasty, the wine was very tasty too

Chicken Tikka Bhuna – I love Indian food and this little gem of a restaurant was just down the road from my friend’s house. The chicken tikka bhuna I had for my main course was absolutely delicious.

Unfortunately I didn’t get photos of all the food I had in Alicante. The other delicious food I had and never got a chance to photo (forgot to photo) were:

Spelt Pizza – On my first night my friends boyfriend made us THE nicest pizza with a spelt base. It was really good, so good in fact that I am making it for dinner this evening so I hope to get the recipe and photos of my version up before the weekend.

Tapas – chicken croquettes, baked cheese and goats cheese salad

Tuna Carpaccio – I had this in Benidorm. It came with wasabi, fresh ginger julienne and a soy lime dressing. It was served with seaweed which I didn’t try

Spelt Brown Bread – Made by my gorgeous friend and amazing host for the weekend…it was simply delicious nom nom

I am taking a stall in our towns local Christmas Market in two weeks so I have a lot of work ahead of me! I made peanut butter chocolate chip gluten-free cookies last night – post to follow! Also, sun-dried tomato and cheddar spelt bread which is fantabulous.

Have you ever been to Spain? If so what was your favourite food?

What I ate Wednesday #7 WIAW

wiaw fall into good habits button

Its that time of the week again where we, the food bloggers, share our food habits with the world ~ well maybe not the world but you get the drift. I spent Saturday baking up some lovely goodies ~ some of which will be shared here today! Its absolutely freezing here in Ireland today, the frost this morning is the worst it has been so far this year so luckily for me I am going to Alicante tomorrow to visit my good friend that lives there. That is my news so far this week…. Oh and I got a new logo, do you like it?

My breakfast is probably going to divide a lot of you! Its my homemade banana and walnut bread toasted with bovril (I LOVE the stuff) and strong cheddar – please dont judge me! haha

Bovril and Cheese

Lunch was Tomato Soup …

Easy Tomato Soup

Scrambled Eggs, Cherry Tomatoes, Avocado, Parmesan & Pasley

Scrambled eggs parmesan

Dinner was Sticky Chicken Skewers but I don’t have a photo, sorry peeps! I promise to get one the next time and get the recipe up as they were soooooooo tasty.

Snacks – an almond flourless cookie

Flourless cookies

A banana

Banana

Packet of Spicy Monster Munch – I still call them monster munch even though they’re now called mighty munch!

Monster munch

Big shout out to Jenn our WIAW host over at peas and crayons. Go check out her page and some of the other blogger’s WIAW posts

Are you taking part in WIAW? What did you eat?

Have you been to Alicante and if so can you recommend places I HAVE to see while there?

What restaurants would you recommend I visit while there?

Four-Ingredient Flourless Cookies

Flourless cookies

Cookies…..ahhh who doesn’t love them? I had an idea of how I wanted to make them and had a look at recipes to see the variations out there. The first ones I made were inspired by a recipe I saw on London Bakes, recipe —> Here

These turned out so chewy and crunchy and very VERY moreish!

Ingredients

  • 200g (1 cup) Almond Butter (See note)
  • 180g (1 cup) Demerara Sugar
  • 1 Egg – slightly beaten
  • 1 Tsp Bicarbonate of soda

Note: To make the almond butter I put a 200g bag of ground almonds in to my little food processor. Keep pulsing on high-speed. The motor will get hot (well mine did) so turn it off and give it a rest to cool after a few minutes. It took me 15 minutes in total to make the butter. If you can buy natural almond butter in your area feel free to do so.

  1. Pre-heat oven to 180’c
  2. Line two baking trays with greaseproof paper
  3. Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl until combined
  4. Taking tablespoons of the mixture roll in to small balls in your hands and place on the baking trays making sure to leave enough space between each ball as they will spread out when cooking
  5. Push the balls down gently with your fingers
  6. Bake for 10 minutes switching the trays around half way through for even cooking
  7. The edges should be brown after the 10 minutes. Leave in the baking trays for another 10 minutes before moving to a wire rack to cook

Munch up!

Flourless cookies

Whats your favourite cookie?

 

Easy Peasy Tomato Soup Recipe

Tomato Soup

 

This soup is delicious and so easy to make. Great for lunch or if hungry between meals a mug of it will keep you going. Its only 77 calories per serving so great for anyone watching the calories. You can jazz this up too with some cheese croutons on top – perfect for a starter at a dinner party.

Ingredients

  • Spray oil
  • 1 onion – roughly diced
  • 2-3 carrots – roughly diced
  • 1 clove of garlic – crushed
  • 2 Tomatoes de-skinned and roughly chopped (See note)
  • 400g (1 tin) of tomatoes
  • 1 litre of Chicken / Veg Stock (Homemade or bought)
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • Handful of fresh Basil – torn at the end just before adding to the soup
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Note: To de-skin the tomatoes make a cross on the bottom of the tomatoes and put in to a narrow bowl or measuring jug and cover completely with boiling water. After 1-2 minutes remove the tomatoes, be careful not to burn yourself. Peel the skin off the tomatoes and roughly chop.

TomatoDe-skin tomato

Instructions

  1. Heat a saucepan on a medium heat and spray a few times with spray oil. Add the onions and cook until translucent and soft
  2. Add the carrots and garlic, stir everything. Dont let the garlic burn as it will become bitter
  3. Add the de-skinned tomatoes and tinned tomatoes, stock, spices and seasoning
  4. Bring to the boil and then simmer for 15-20 minutes until the carrots are cooked. Taste for seasoning
  5. Whizz the soup up with a hand blender or put in food processor add the torn basil
  6. Serve with homemade brown bread or banana and walnut bread 

Soup season is upon us and I love coming up with new tastes in soup, you can almost never go wrong. Potato and Pepper and Tom Yum soup is a few  other of my faves….

What is your favourite soup for winter?

What is the strangest or most exotic soup you have tasted?

Banana and Walnut Spelt Bread (Eggless)

banana walnut spelt bread marked

How was everyone’s weekend? Mine was quiet enough with a LOT of baking on Saturday. One of the items I made was this banana and walnut spelt bread and boy is it good. Its quick and easy to make also, no kneading or yeast here. It is also eggless! Its perfect with soup or toasted for breakfast. I love it! So instead of a big introduction here is the recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 Cup / 115g Whole Spelt Flour
  • 1 Cup / 58g Wheat Bran
  • 1 Cup / 90g Rolled Oats
  • 1 Tsp Bicarbonate of Soda / Baking Soda
  • 1/2 Cup / 65g Walnuts – chopped roughly
  • 1 Medium ripe banana
  • 1 cup / 250ml Buttermilk

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat oven to 200’c / 400’f
  2. Spray a bread tin with spray oil
  3. In a bowl mix together spelt flour, wheat bran, oats, bicarbonate of soda and walnuts.
  4. Mash the banana and add to the mixture along with the buttermilk. The mixture will be wet, that’s perfect.
  5. Put the mixture in to the oiled bread tin
  6. Bake for 50 minutes in the middle of oven
  7. Check the bread by knocking the base and if you hear a hollow sound it is cooked
  8. Transfer to wire rack to cool completely before cutting

Banana and walnut spelt breadBanana and walnut bread

Whats your favourite bread?

Do you get much baking / cooking done at the weekends?