Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Herby Courgette and Mushroom Pasta

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This is beyond simple but wanted to share it as it's so delicious and perfect for a mid-week simple supper or a quick lunch. When I had my first ever flatshare one of the guys I lived with made me courgette pasta where he just grated lot's of courgette, cooked it and added pasta and Parmesan, so good and very cheap to! Ive added mushrooms and a cream sauce but it's just as lovely without.

Sliced Chestnut Mushrooms
1 grated courgette
Half a pack of Boursain garlic & Herb Cheese
Freshly milled Pepper & Salt

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All you need to do is get your pasta on to boil, grate your courgette and slice your mushrooms. Start by sauteing the mushrooms in a little butter and olive oil until there cooked with a slight caramelization on them as I think they taste nicer like that. Then add your grated courgette and cook for around 4-5 minutes before adding your boursain and stirring it in.
Lastly stir the cooked pasta into the creamy courgette sauce, season and serve, and Im sure you could add a few shavings of Parmesan and it would be extra lovely.

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Tuesday, 21 February 2012

The Versatile Blogger Award

Well how lovely for me, I have been given the versatile blogger award from one of my favourite blogging lady's from 'Fallen From Flavour' so thank you so much and I guess I have to tell seven random things about myself......

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Add the award to your blog.
Thank the blogger who gave it to you.
Mention 7 random things about yourself.
List the rules.
Award to 15 bloggers.
Inform each of those 15 by leaving a comment on their blog.

1. I don't believe in any God and in fact I have quite strong views on the whole religion thing in general ( food blog not a place for said views) but I do in fact believe in Faery's/Fairys.
They are real, they do exist and I won't have anyone tell me otherwise!

2. I love dog's more than other animal in the whole world, they are loyal and give you unconditional love. I even have my old dog's name 'Loki' tattooed on my wrist and no I don't care what people think!
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3. I used to wear tracksuits, Elizabeth Duke gold jewellery from Argos and have my ponytail pulled as tight as it would go on top of my head with a massive attitude problem when I was a teenager growing up in London, what was I thinking, my Mother didn't bring me up to dress or act like that, vile vile vile!
Although now I am the owner of a rather extensive tattoo collection in the style of 'Old Skool' and would rather stick needles in my eyes than wear a tracksuit, so glad I grew out of that phase!
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4. I adore cheese in all its forms but mainly as a sauce all over other things like macaroni cheese, cauliflower cheese or gammon with cheese sauce pored all over it. The worst thing I do though is eat dairyleay dunkers and cheese moments and I don't even have to be hungover to do it, probably shouldn't admit to that on here.

5.I have a very unhealthy Ebay and Etsy obsession, 'oh Ive been paid, why don't I go and spend all my wages on clothes that don't fit me and hand made egg cups, yea that's what I'll do, good idea'

6. I have a huge collection of silk scarfs and bandanna's that I like to wear almost every day tied on my head in a lovely big 1950's style bow, my favourite is my red and white check vivienne Westwood one I got off e-bay for £8, bargain!
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This photo is a bit old as I have now have platinum blonde hair after being red/orange for about 6 years!

7. I still sleep with my childhood teddy bear, his name is Teddy and he only has one arm due to my little brother pulling it off when we were children (bastard)
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I have chosen 15 other blogs to award the 'Versatile Blogger' award to and they are listed below, but if you don't want to do it I totally understand and will try not to get upset about it, so there you are.xx

The extraordinary Art of Cake
Good Food in a Crap Kitchen
As Strong as Soup
The Beach Hut Cook
Our 21st Centuary Guide to the Good Life
Mummy I can Cook
Food Urchin
The KitchenMaid
Back to the Chopping Board
The Greedy Fork
Peckham Rye Eats
Exploits of a Food Nut
Nora the Kitchen 'Splorer
La Bonne Bouffe
Belleau Kitchen

I won't be offended if any of you guys don't want to do it but at least you all know I love ya blogs eh!xxLink

Friday, 17 February 2012

Random Recipies 1st Birthday..Nigella Lawson's Choc Chip Chilli

So one year ago for my first 'Random Recipes' created by the lovely Dom over at Belleau Kitchen, the book I ended up picking was Nigella Lawsons book called 'Nigella Christmas' and it was the middle of July, all I can say is thank God I didn't pick roast goose with all the trimmings......
So once again here I am with the same book as before and this time I have randomly picked a recipe for 'Choc Chip Chilli' which I was very happy with although as the weather has been so cold I would have pretty happy with the roast goose!
Nigella's recipe uses shin of been and chorizo sausage with dark chocolate, it sounded amazing and it really was, I always use dark chocolate in my chilli because it gives a dark smooth savourness which is amazing and I urge you to give it a go but make sure you use very very dark chocolate like Green and Blacks as it doesn't have a high sugar content. I have reduced the amounts because I don't need to cook for 12 and not added tomato ketchup.



10 mini chorizo sausages ( un-cooked)
3 1/4 lb boneless beef shank, cut into rough cubes
3 onions
3 cloves garlic,
1 red chilli
Glug of piri piri oil or vegetable
Seeds from 3 cardamom pods
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon of smoked paprika (not in Nigella recipe)
1 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
Half a tube of tomato paste
1 can red kidney beans, drained
2 cans diced tomatoes
Half a bar of dark chocolate
1 cup water

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Finely chop the onion, garlic and chile.

Heat the oil in a large ovenproof pan and fry the onion, garlic and chile until soft, on low for about 10 minutes, then add the cardamom sees, cumin, coriander, cinnamon and red pepper flakes.

Add the sliced chorizo and let them ooze their paprika-orange oil.

Drop in the cubes of beef, turning them in the pan with the chorizo and onion mix, to brown the meat.

Stir in the tomato paste, drained kidney beans and diced tomatoes. Add the water and bring the chili to a boil.

Once it's started bubbling, sprinkle the chocolate ships over the chili and give it a good stir. Put on the lid and transfer to the oven or you can cook it on the hob with the lid half on which is what I did.

Cook at this low heat for 3 hours. I ate it strait away but as you all know the flavour will improve with age....

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I highly recommend making this chilli, I served mine with rice, guacamole, sour cream and cheese and it was warming and very filling. This is only the second 'Random Recipes' I have done, really need to do them more often! Nigella Christmas is one of my favourite cook books of all time, it has loads of gorgeous recipes in it so remember it's for life and not just for Christmas.

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Butternut Squash Macaroni Cheese

Macaroni cheese is one of my all time favourite things to eat when I'm hungover, sad or cold and today I'm cold and slightly hungover so macaroni cheese it is but with a bit of a difference from my normal recipe. I added some roasted butternut squash puree and crispy bacon to the normal cheese sauce and oh my it worked a treat. I thought it would be a bit sweet and I was right it was so adding the crispy bacon and lot's of mature cheddar and Parmesan gave the dish a savoury depth which I think it needed but that's my opinion and everyone has different tastes so leave the bacon out if you want.

Half a large butternut squash
4 rashers of Bacon
Mature cheddar Cheese
Bread Crumbs

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First I roasted my butternut squash in a bit of olive oil for about 45mins.

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I then blitzed the butternut into a puree with a drop of milk and put the bacon under the grill and the macaroni on to boil.

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I made a roux with flour and butter and slowly added milk a little at time to make a white sauce

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I then mixed the butternut puree, mature cheddar, nutmeg and pepper into the white sauce

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Then I added the cooked smoky bacon to the sauce

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Mix the cooked macaroni with the sauce

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Cover with breadcrumbs, grated cheese and Parmesan

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I cooked it in the oven for around half an hours on the middle shelf on gas mark 6

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It was a bit different to normal macaroni cheese and you can pretend it's 'healthy' because of the butternut squash in it........