My Friday Feeling Tea!!

Hi Everyone!

After a couple of weeks of looking after stressed out brides and bridesmaids my Sunday Reading post will be the second in my Hen Party Series and will be about how to plan a stress free hen party. Everyone talks about Wedding Season but these last few weeks I think I have experienced my very own Hen Party Season!

I wouldn’t have it any other way, I just love the feeling I get when I have helped someone with an important part of their special day.

My other passion is cooking and I thought I would fit a quick recipe post in between Party Planning!

I have had a super busy day packing orders, responding to emails and continuing with various stages of wedding planning so when my lovely man told me he fancied a nice home cooked meal, as opposed to our usual quickie Fish Friday at Wetherspoons it was the last thing on my mind…..But my man works so hard (in a very physical job) and is so brilliant to me. He works his own job then comes home and works with me on our business without question and never moans. The least I can do is make sure he has a home cooked meal after a hard days work.

My passion for cooking came from meeting Mr Seaside, before that I was strictly a cocktails and pizza girl but that would never work in this relationship and now I am a career girl/housewife!! The man changed my life and I love him!!

Anyway I digress I just wanted to share the yummy recipe I whipped up because it really was just delicious!

Friday is our fish theme so I popped down to our local market and treated us to tuna steaks from the fish counter. I am also Budget Girl so this really was a treat. i then used the rest of our local shops to buy the veg, salad and of course the wine! I believe in using local businesses and supporting them.

Anyway here is the recipe for my marinated tuna steak!

INGREDIENTS

2 tuna steaks (if you are on a budget Iceland do them for a good price frozen)

Oil

For Marinade

60mls orange juice

60mls soy sauce

2 tbsp parsley

1/2 tsp oregano

1 tbsp lemon juice

Black pepper to taste

METHOD

Mix all the marinade ingredients and place in large dish. Add tuna and turn a couple of times to coat. Place in fridge for at least 30 mins.

While this is in the fridge I like to prepare a salad with a vinaigrette dressing. Here’s how I do it.

Cut up finely any salad items you want to add and then mix the following for the dressing;

3 tbsp olive oil

2 tbsp white wine vinegar

1 tsp dijon mustard (add more according to taste)

1tsp honey (again add more to taste)

salt and pepper

Mix together in a bottle or use whisk and drizzle over salad.

Once tuna is ready add a little oil to a frying pan and add tuna, fry for 3-5 minutes depending on taste. Turn over and baste with the marinade and fry for a further 3-5 mins.

Your meal  is now ready!! Serve with new potatoes and salad. To make it extra tasty add salt and butter to your potatoes…..YUMMY!

The lovely Mr Seaside more than approved and so did our cat!! Gourmet meal for Beau. I also made too many potatoes much to our chickens delight, seems to be their favourite food!!

Oh and don’t forget to serve with a lovely cold white wine!

This post is without pictures as I forgot I took the pic with my camera phone! Dizzy Blonde! I am off out so I will post the picture with my next post on Sunday x

Happy Reading and hopefully Happy Experimenting xx

 

 

Advertisements

A Recipe for Potstickers

I had often wondered what potstickers were, turns out they are just Chinese dumplings and are, in fact really easy to make!

Don’t be daunted by the long list of ingredients, once you have all the ingredients in front of you its super easy.

For the filling

1/2lb minced pork (about 225gm)

Finely chopped spring onions ( I usually use a whole bunch)

2tbs finely chopped red pepper

1 egg

1tsp mustard

2tsp ketchup

2tsp Worcestershire sauce

1tsp brown sugar

1 1/2tsp salt

1/2tsp black pepper

1/4tsp cayenne pepper

3/4tsp oil

250mls chicken stock

For the dough

285g all purpose flour

150-170mls boiled water

1tsp salt

To make the dough

Mix the flour and salt together and create a well in the middle.

Add 150ml of the water slowly, mixing with a wooden spoon, you can always add more water if the mix is too dry or more flour if its too sticky.

Knead into a ball and then carry in kneading well for two minutes.

Wrap in clingfilm and allow to rest for 1 hour. I always mix the filling here.

Roll out the dough as thinly as possible. I out it through my pasta machine but rolling it out thinly works too!

on a floured surface cut out rounds using a 4 inch cookie cutter.DSC00911.JPG

For The Filling and making the dumpling

Basically just mix all the ingredients apart from the oil and chicken stock. Season well.

Take a dumpling round and brush the edges with water and add half a teaspoon of the mixture to the centre.

DSC00913Fold over and seal at the edges. Repeat until all the dough and mixture has been used, covering the completed dumplings with a damp towel.

Put the oven on at 95 degrees, this is a cool oven and make your chicken stock up. You will use this in three lots so use about 83mls at a time.

Heat a frying pan and add your oil. Place around 8-10 dumplings in the pan, leaving the rest under the towel. Heat for 2 minutes without touching them! Its good to use a good non stick pan. My first attempt with a bad pan was terrible!

After 2 minutes add a third of the stock and cover them. Leave for 2 minutes.

Remove and place on a baking tray and place inn the oven to keep warm.

Clean the pan and repeat the process until all the potstickers/ dumplings are done.

Serve immediately.

potsticker172You can make a dipping sauce using 1tbs chilli oil, 1tbs of soy sauce and 1tsp rice vinegar. Just mix together and adjust to suit your taste.

They are great little snacks for family or friends.

Its worth noting that you can make the dough one day ahead and refrigerate if entertaining, in fact I normally make both the dough and the mix a day ahead then the actual cooking time is minimal. I have more time to enjoy a cocktail or two with my friends!

I’m going to have a practice with more Chinese style dishes and host a little dinner party to review my new cooking skills!

A Christmas Canape Recipe!

Hi all! I am in the middle of writing some more of my New York Diary pieces, but in the meantime I thought I would share some of the Christmas canapé recipes I am experimenting with!

I know there are some fantastic products at Iceland, but for those who like to cook this is a great sausage roll recipe which received high praise from both my lovely Mr Seaside and my very best friend.

(I must admit I had a half hour strolling around Iceland and very nearly gave in to the easy option. Look blinkin great, very affordable and easy if you have a lot of people at a party. I am certainly having a cocktail party night with the stuff they have in at the moment for a night off!)

Anyhow, here is the recipe for my sausage rolls, it’s easier than you think. I use ready made pastry!

Here Goes……

Ingredients

30g butter

100g mushrooms (very finely chopped)

1 tbps Worcestershire Sauce

1tbap Tabasco

1 tbsp thyme

450g sausage meat (you can squeeze it out of fresh sausages, messy but YUMMY!)  Tip: go to your local butcher and get your favourite sausage, you won’t regret it.

Ready rolled puff pastry. If you have the perfect recipe use it. If not, get ready rolled and roll it out and thin it out a bit. (I use ready made! My hands aren’t cold enough!)

Salt and Pepper , Oh one beaten egg (I forgot!!)

METHOD

Preaheat oven to gas mark 6

 

Melt butter and fry the mushrooms in a frying pan until soft.

Transfer to a bowl.

Mix all of the other ingredients together, Mix very well!!

Don’t forget to season!!

Roll out pastry, use as much flour as needed to stop it sticking, It won’t ruin it and it won’t stick.

Cut and lay the meat as follows.

Sausage-Rolls-meat-in-pastry

Then roll up and put the join facing down on the baking tray and with a knife make joins along the pastry to mark out each individual roll like soSausage-Rolls-before-cooked

Make sure you don’t cut all the way through, this is done afterwards. Using a beaten egg brush the roll and repeat the process for as many rolls as you want or as far as the meat will stretch!

Bake for about 25 minutes until the rolls are a lovely golden brown.

Remove from the oven and cut into mini rolls once cooled.

ENJOY!!

sausage-rolls

These can be made in advance so there is no rushing about before your guests arrive! The best kinds of recipes.

I have been experimenting with more canapés today so I will be adding the recipes tomorrow and will finish with some fab Christmas cocktails (I’m looking forward to that tasting evening!) and a post about hosting the perfect Christmas party stress free!

See you all soon!

 

Halloween Cooking and Carving!!

DSC00832

 

Hi Everyone!!

I’ve been getting into the Halloween spirit by carving my pumpkin and making a yummy pumpkin soup!

After buying a suitably large enough pumpkin and pinching (borrowing!) the carving and stencil kit from my local pub, I set about cutting the top off and scooping out the insides.

I think there are plenty of guides online to show how this is done with better pictures than I can put on here so I will let you look at them, along with the hundreds of templates you can get.

The one thing I will say is that it is worth getting one of those pumpkin carving kits with the spoon and the little mini saw type knives. Far better than tackling it with kitchen knives and blunt spoons!! You can pick them up from Tesco for about £4.00

My Soup recipe is made using the deseeded and diced pumpkin from a medium to large pumpkin but if you end up having a small pumpkin just bulk it out with a veg like carrot, squash, sweet potato etc.

Anyway, here is my recipe for spiced pumpkin soup.

750g pumpkin deseeded and cubed, or as much as you have once you have scooped out and deseeded the pumpkin

2 carrots, sliced

2 onions, roughly chopped

1 potato/sweet potato

2 chicken or vegetable stock cubes

1 litre water

Salt and pepper to taste

Now if you want to go spicy……………………

1tsp parika

1tsp coriander

1tsp cumin

If you want to stay cool………………………….

250ml double cream

2tsp nutmeg

METHOD

Preheat the oven to gas mark 7 or 220 c and place pumpkin, carrots and onions in a roasting tin, drizzle with oil and place in the oven for around 40 minutes. Make sure they are soft and not black.

While they are roasting, I would say 25  minutes in,  boil the diced potato in the water and crumble in the stock cubes.

Once the vegetables are done add to the potato and stock.

At this point if you want spicy add the paprika, coriander and cumin.

Once all combined blend in a blender and return to the pan.

If you want Cool add the cream and nutmeg, then add salt and pepper and gently heat to serve.

Its lovely served with those part baked baguettes that you can get from most supermarkets, always oozing with a good portion of butter.

I found out tonight, courtesy of Little Mr Seaside that a few dashes of Lea and Perrins goes very well. After 2 full bowls and a full baguette I think its safe to say I have a very satisfied man!!

I must say it goes very well with a Cosmopolitan!

I hope you all enjoy an Autumn classic with a little bit of spookiness thrown in.

P.S

I tried my very best to get my lovely black cat in the background of my cat styled pumpkin but he is just too naughty or stubborn!!!

October Comfort Food

Whilst experimenting with my Halloween recipes I came across this recipe for Sweet Potato Mac ‘n’ Cheese and I have to say it is absolutely yummy!

It’s relatively easy and lovely and warming on these cold October nights. It’s also a good way to add vegetables to your

children’s meals. Try it, you won’t regret it, I promise!

mac-and-cheese

500g sweet potatoes (this is 1 very large one or 2 medium size potatoes)

300g of macaroni pasta (if you can’t find this use penne pasta)

60g butter

3 tablespoons flour (plain)

500ml full fat milk

1 tsp English mustard

dash of paprika (although I put more in as I love it!)

75g feta cheese

125g mature cheddar cheese + extra for sprinkling on top

METHOD

Preheat your oven to 200c or gas mark 6 and put a large pan of water on to boil.

Peel and cut the potatoes into about 3cm pieces and then boil them for about ten minutes until soft.

Remove from the water with a slotted spoon (the recipe states to save the water to cook the pasta in)

Mash the potatoes lightly but don’t puree them

TO MAKE THE SAUCE

Gently melt the butter and add the flour, whisking to form a roux, take the pan off the heat and whisk in the milk nice and slowly until it’s all smooth. Put back on the heat and stir until thickened then add the mustard and paprika.

Cook the pasta according to the packet in the sweet potato water and the drain (save a little water for the sauce)

Now mix the pasta with the sweet potato, folding the pasta into the mash

Crumble the feta cheese into the pasta and potato mix and then slowly fold in the white sauce adding the cheddar as you go.

You will see the mix all start to come together now, you can add some of the reserved water if its too thick.

Spoon into a large baking dish and sprinkle the extra cheddar on top with a little paprika if desired.

Bake for 30 minutes until bubbling and golden on the top.

I love making macaroni cheese and I have to say this one is way up there as one of my favourite dishes. So much so that I have added it to my menus of my all inclusive wedding and event packages!

ENJOY!