Recipe: Lemon, Garlic and Herb Chicken Thigh Tray Bake

This tray bake is simple, tasty and ready in an hour and needs very little prep, hooray! Using chicken thighs gives crispy and moist meat and the juices released from the skin is just perfect for roasting those potatoes in. The lemon, garlic and herb flavour combination used gives this dish a real freshness about it.

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You will need:

  • 5/6 Chicken Thighs
  • 4/5 Potatoes
  • 2 Carrots
  • Baby Courgettes (5/6), halved lengthways
  • 6 Cloves of Garlic
  • 2 Lemons
  • 1 tablespoon dried Herbs de Provence
  • 1 Chicken Stock cube
  • Salt and Pepper to Season

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Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 190 degrees Celsius.
  2. Dice potatoes and chop carrots and place in a large baking tray with a glug of olive oil
  3. Chop half of the garlic cloves and crush the other half using the back of the knife and a strong firm push down.
  4. Score the skin of the chicken thighs so the flavours sink in well and place skin side up on top of the veg.
  5. Squeeze over the juice of the lemon and add the rest of the lemon to the tray, sprinkle over the garlic, chicken stock cube, herbs and season with salt and pepper.
  6. Mix well to ensure the seasoning is mingling well with all the meat and veg and roast for 20 mins.
  7. Remove the tray from the oven and give it a shake, turn over the chicken thighs so the skin side is down and return to the warmth of the oven roast for a further 20 mins.
  8. Take out the oven and turn over the chicken so that it is skin side up again and add the courgettes to the tray, give the tray another good shake. Turn up the oven to 220 degrees Celsius and roast for a final 20 mins until the chicken and veg is golden and crispy. Serve and enjoy!
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Recipe: Mediterranean Pork Kebabs

This is a simple yet flavoursome recipe which is what I made us for tea last night. I will admit I had a little mishap when making these, I would normally use onions or peppers to go alongside meat for the skewers but this time I decided to use leeks and, erm, well the kind of just fall off the skewers. But they chargrilled nicely anyway and became a tasty little side dish. This recipe uses pork but also works well on chicken too, or if you’re not a meat fan just mixed veg, just forget the leeks.

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You will need:

  • 500g Pork Loin, diced
  • juice of 1 Lemon
  • 1 teaspoon Dried Oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dried Marjoram
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dried Thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon Cayenne Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of Paprika
  • 3 cloves of Garlic
  • 1 Chicken stock cube, crumbled
  • salt and pepper to season
  • 6 Fresh Mint Leaves, chopped

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Method:

  1. Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and mix well to ensure the pork is well covered with all the flavours. Cover and leave to marinade for at least 30 mins.
  2. Thread the pork onto skewers, this should make approx 12 skewers which will be enough for about 4 people if served with a side dish/dishes.
  3. Over a high heat, heat a griddle pan until very hot and one by one add the skewers.
  4. Turn every few minutes to colour on each side. The kebabs will take approx 10 mins to cook but if you are unsure you can always cut open a pice of pork to check that the meat is no longer pink in colour.
  5. Once cooked sprinkle over fresh mint, take out the pan and serve.

I enjoyed my kebabs with roasted potatoes and homemade garlic and Parmesan bread but would go fantastic with Pitta bread, salad and Tzatziki (see older post for My Tzatziki recipe). This would also be great as part of a meat platter and great finger food when having friends over.

Recipe: Gin and Raspberry Cocktails

So after a beaut meal at the Wig and Pen we’ve come home to a night in of Cocktails and Captain America. Yum (cue: stop drooling, or try).

This week’s Saturday night treat is a gin special with fresh raspberries; fresh, zingy and so so tasty.

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  1. You will need (per glass):
  • 1 shot of gin (my choice is tanqueray or portobello road)
  • 1 dash of lemon vodka (I used grey goose)
  • 6 raspberries, plus more to garnish
  • tonic
  • elderflower sparkling water

Method:

  1. Add the ice a raspberries to a glass, for a quirky feel why not try using jam jar style. Muddle together until the raspberries are broken up.
  2. Add your spirits to the glass and mix.
  3. To finish fill the rest of the glass half up with tonic and the rest with sparkling elderflower water. Add more raspberries to garnish and enjoy!!

Recipe: Tzatziki

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This is my recipe for my ultimate favourite dip Tzatziki. This is a real taste of holiday and always brings me a sunny feeling. For over 10 years I have holidayed in Cyprus or Greek island where this dip is an ultimate staple. When eating Greek you NEED this dip. I love it.

You will need:

  • 1/2 Cucumber
  • 300g Greek Yoghurt (full fat, low fat, whatever you fancy)
  • 2 Cloves of Garlic
  • 15- 20 Fresh Mint Leaves
  • Juice of 1/2 to 1 Lemon
  • Salt and Pepper to season

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Method:

  1. In a preheated oven, roast the whole garlic cloves in an oven proof dish for about 5 mins, take out and allow to cool. This gives the dip the garlic flavour without the sharp raw taste.
  2. Next, prepare your cucumber. Use half and coarsely grate and finely chop the other half.
  3. Add a pinch of salt to the cucumber mix and allow to sit for a couple of mins. Squeeze out and drain as much water as you can get out to ensure that the dip isn’t too wet.
  4. Finely chop the mint and add to the cucumber; I find an easy way of doing this is to pile all the mint leaves up, rolling them together and then chopping it up.
  5. Once the garlic has cooled, remove its skin and finely chop. Add to the cucumber mix.
  6. Add the yoghurt, lemon juice, salt and pepper and give a good mix. Taste and add more seasoning if you desire.. and done!!

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This is a great simple dip which is great to impress your friends or just to simply ‘pimp up’ your meal and will keep good in the fridge for a fair few days. An instant taste of summer perfect for all year round.

 

Recipe: Lunchtime Halloumi Skewers

If your anything like me you need your lunch to be tasty, interesting and fresh. I easily get bored with eating the same foods everyday and you know what they say, variety is the spice of life!! Yesterdays lunch was no different and was inspired by the block of Halloumi sat in my fridge purchased on last weekends shop. This is quick, easy and not only a great for lunch but also good as part of a Meze or platter.

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(the below recipe was for my lunch and is enough for one person)

You will need:

  • 1/3 block Halloumi Cheese, cut into cubes (1-2cm)
  • Juice of 1/2 a Lemon
  • 3-4 Mint Leaves Chopped
  • pinch of Oregano (fresh or dried)
  • Black Pepper to season
  • Salad to serve (or whatever else you choose)

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Method:

  1. Put the cubes of Halloumi in a bowl with the lemon juice, mint, oregano and black pepper, mix, cover and leave to marinade for 30 mins.
  2. Thread the Halloumi onto skewers and place into a preheated frying pan/ griddle. Save the remains of the marinade in the bowl, you will need this later.
  3. Grill each side for 30 secs- 1 min until you see and nice golden crust forming. Once all four sides are cooked, turn off the heat and pour over the remainder of the marinade which will start to sizzle in the pan.
  4. Take out of the pan and serve with whatever you fancy.

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I enjoyed mine with salad, Tzatiki and these little Pearl Onion from Aldi. To top it all off the sun was shining and I managed to enjoy my lunch al fresco.

And today, because it’s Friday it’s going to be good old Fish & Chips.

 

 

Recipe: Mojito Salsa

I must admit it, this was a complete fluke but ended up being an amazing discovery. Halfway through making Salsa last night I realised that I had no corriander (cue panic!!) so as a bit of a gamble I decided to use mint instead. I then came to the theory (a very sensible one) that since the combination works so well in Mojitos I’ll add some golden rum and tadaa! it worked a treat.

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You will need:

  • Handfull of Tomatoes Piccolino or Baby Plum
  • Juice of half a Lime
  • Quarter a Red Onion
  • Red Chilli (as much or as little depending on how hot you want it)
  • Few Mint Leaves
  • 1- 2 teaspoons of Golden Rum (I preferre Havana Club)
  • Salt and Pepper to season.

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Method:

  1. Finely dice onion, red chilli and mint and add to a bowl with the lime juice.
  2. Roughly chop the tomatoes and add to the mix and stir, sprinkle over the rum and add salt and pepper to taste. If you feel it needs it or just like your salsas on the sweet side add a pinch of sugar (granulated or demerara will work fine). Enjoy!!

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This would be perfect for any mexican dish, I enjoyed mine with mexican spiced chicken, mashed avacado and wedges.

Hello August

Well the sun is shining here in Yorkshire (well it is at the moment guaranteed that in the next 5 minutes the heavens will open) and I’m enjoying the delights that this month has to offer.

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Fresh flavours are in prime season such as Tomatoes and Basil, which I have been enjoying in simple Tomato & Mozzarella Salads and homemade Salsas.

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Plums which are great fresh or in cakes and tarts, I made a great Plum and Hazelnut cake last week (recipe will be shared in the near future) which went down a treat with a piping hot brew.

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And Crabs and Lobsters enjoyed fresh from the sea on coastal breaks especially great in Cornwall and Jersey. Also, it’s great to see that ice cream is bang on trend at the moment with an influx of crazy flavours over in the US such as Indian Pale Ale and Sriracha Popcorn. While over here the innovation lies in the making, in June I travelled down to Taste of London festival where Custom Creams were showcasing their new way of making our favourite frozen treat. They inject fresh cream, plus your choice of flavour, with Liquid Nitrogen to make the ice cream instantly right in front of you using a device that looks like a cross between a Kitchen Aid and something you would have seen in your science lesson back at school, just brilliant.

Well that’s the first post complete, lets see where the journey takes us.