Monthly Archives: February 2015

Shrove Tuesday and the BEST pancake recipe of 2015

Buttermilk Pancakes with Bacon & Maple Syrup


Buttermilk Pancakes with Maple Syrup

I discovered this recipe on a recent trip to London (after a rather over-indulgent night out!) and I have been hankering after it ever since.

Shrove Tuesday has given me to perfect opportunity to try it at home and share it with the rest of the family.

Be warned, it’s naughty,
but very VERY nice!


Buttermilk Pancakes with Bacon & Maple Syrup

Serves 4
Time 30 mins

Plain flour 110g (4oz)
Baking powder 2 tsp
Bicarbonate of soda ½ tsp
Caster sugar 1 tbsp
Salt ½ tsp
Eggs 2 large, beaten
Buttermilk 284/300ml tub
Butter 25g (1oz), melted, plus extra for frying
Streaky bacon 8 rashers
Maple syrup to serve

1 Sift flour, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda into a bowl. Stir in sugar and salt.

2 Whisk in eggs, buttermilk and butter, taking care not to over-whisk.

3 Heat a non-stick frying pan over a medium heat and add a tiny amount of butter. Pour in 2-3 spoonfuls of batter and cook for 1-2 minutes until bubbles appear and edges start to turn dry.  Flip and cook for 1 minute more, until golden underneath. Keep warm.

Buttermilk Pancakes with Bacon & Maple Syrup

4 Repeat until batter is used up.

5 Place bacon rashers side-by-side in a large non-stick frying pan. Fry over a medium heat for 4-5 minutes, turning halfway through, until crisp. Drain on kitchen paper.

6 Serve pancakes topped with bacon and drizzled with maple syrup.









Eat Out, In Valentine’s Day

Eat Out, In this Valentine's Day


Eat Out, In: The easiest and tastiest Valentine’s Day menu ever

The whole point of Valentine’s Day is to enjoy time with your other half. So if you choose to eat at home rather than visit a restaurant (who may well inflate their prices for the privilege of dining with them on February 14th!), you will want a menu that gives you maximum time together rather than hours slaving in the kitchen.

These delicious recipes deliver maximum
flavour but allow you to prepare ahead, so
that you can enjoy each other’s company.


This speedy salad takes only 5 minutes to prepare yet tastes divine. The mix of textures and the contrast between the sweet pears and the salty Stilton works beautifully.

Pear & Stilton Salad

Starter: Pear & Stilton Salad

Time required 5 mins.
Per portion: 493 Kcal, 39g fat (11.4g saturated)
Suitable for vegetarians
Serves 2

Mixed leaf salad 50g (2oz)
Chicory 1 head, halved, leaves separated and torn into large pieces
Conference pears 2, cored and sliced
Stilton cheese 75g (3oz), crumbled
Walnut pieces 25g (1oz)
Walnut oil 1 tbsp
Extra virgin olive oil 2 tbsp
Lime 1, juice only
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Par-baked rolls 2, warmed, to serve, optional

1 Put the prepared salad and chicory leaves in a bowl. Add the pears to the bowl with the Stilton followed by the walnut pieces. Drizzle with the oil and lime juice, mix gently and season with salt and pepper.

2 Arrange the salad neatly in the centre of two large plates and serve at once with a warmed par-baked roll per person.

Recipe taken from Clever One Pot cookbook.


Cod loin is a really meaty fish, which works brilliantly with Pancetta. The veg is cooked in the oven with it, so all you need to do is heat a pre-prepared packet of rice or mixed grains and your whole meal is done.

Cod in pancetta

Main: Roasted Cod Loin wrapped in Pancetta

Time required 30 mins.
Per portion: 358 Kcal, 23g fat (4.8g saturated)
Serves 2

Cod loin 2 pieces, 150–175g (5–6oz) each
Smoked sliced pancetta 8–10 slices, weighing about 50g (2oz)
Olive oil 2 tbsp
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Asparagus tips 125g (4½oz), trimmed
Ready-to-eat mixed grains 250g packet (found in the couscous/rice aisle of the supermarket) to serve, optional
Light mayonnaise 2–3 tbsp
Lime ½–1, juice only

1 Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas 6. Generously wrap the cod loins in pancetta. Drizzle a little oil in a roasting tin and pop the cod loins on top of the oil. Drizzle the loins with a little more oil, season with pepper and roast in the oven for 10 minutes.

2 Meanwhile, tip the remaining oil into a plastic food bag. Add the asparagus tips and season with salt and pepper. Shake gently so the asparagus is lightly coated in oil.

3 Remove the cod loins from the oven, baste the pancetta with the juices in the pan and add the asparagus spears, making sure they are in a single layer. Roast for a further 8–10 minutes until the cod loins are cooked through and the asparagus is tender.

4 Heat the mixed grains (if using) in the microwave according to the packet’s instructions. Flavour the mayonnaise with lime juice, adding it gradually so it doesn’t split the mayonnaise, and season with salt and pepper to taste.

5 To serve, set a spoonful of mixed grains on each plate, pop the cod loin on top and arrange the asparagus spears neatly to the side. Serve at once with the lime mayonnaise.

Recipe taken from Clever One Pot cookbook


Make ahead and chill until you’re ready to pop it into the oven and then take time to saviour this decadent treat, served warm with a good drizzle of ready-made custard.

Marmalade Bread & Butter Pudding

Dessert: Marmalade Bread & Butter Pudding

Time 45 minutes.
Per portion: 574 Kcal, 25g fat (13g saturated)
Suitable for freezing
Suitable for vegetarians
Serves 2

White bread 6 slices, crusts removed
Butter 40g (1½oz), softened
Marmalade 2 tbsp
Caster sugar 2 tbsp
Sultanas 2 tbsp
Eggs 2
Milk 200ml (7fl oz)

1 Preheat the oven to 190°C/375°F/Gas 5 and lightly butter a 600ml (1 pint) pie dish.

2 Spread the bread with butter and then with the marmalade and then cut each slice of bread into four triangles. Arrange the triangles in the prepared dish, sprinkling the layers with sugar and sultanas.

3 Beat the eggs and milk together in a jug, then pour into the dish. Bake in the oven for about 30 minutes until golden brown and set. Serve warm.

Recipe taken from Fantastic Food For Less cookbook.


Have a Happy Valentine’s Day.







Read blog on the Dairy Diary website.


Bramley Apple Week and the Prettiest Apple Tart



Bramley Apple Week and the Prettiest Apple Tart

The Bramley is recognised by professional chefs and home cooks alike as the best apple for cooking.

Grown only in Britain, the Bramley’s unique qualities make it a versatile ingredient, equally at home in a savoury stir fry or a traditional apple pie.

Bramley apples contain a higher acid content and lower sugar levels than other apples, which produces a stronger, tangier tasting apple whose flavour is retained when cooked. Texture is also important and Bramleys produce a ‘melt in the mouth’ moist texture when cooked.

Caramelised apples set on top
of a syrup-filled tart make this
gorgeous dish a taste sensation!


Treacle Tart with Glazed Apples

Serves 6
1¼ hours plus cooling
555 Kcals/portion
Fat 16g (7.2g sat) per portion
Suitable for freezing
Suitable for vegetarians

Plain flour 175g (6oz)
Butter 65g (2½oz), diced
White vegetable cooking fat or lard 40g (1½oz), diced
Golden syrup 454g tin
Ground ginger 1 tsp
Lemon 1, grated zest and juice
Fresh breadcrumbs 110g (4oz)
Bramley apples 2, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
Icing sugar 1 tbsp
Custard or ice cream to serve (optional)

1 To make the pastry, put the flour, 40g (1½oz) butter and fat in a bowl and rub in with your fingertips until you have fine crumbs. Gradually add 2 tbsp water and mix to a smooth dough. Alternatively, you could use a food processor.

2 Knead the pastry briefly, then roll out on a lightly floured surface until a little larger than a 24cm (9½in) diameter fluted loose-bottomed flan tin. Lift the pastry over the rolling pin, place in the tin then ease up the sides, pressing it in place. Trim the top of the pastry so that it stands a little above the tin. Chill for 15 minutes.

3 Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 190°C/375°F/Gas 5. Pour the syrup into a saucepan, add the ginger, lemon zest and half the juice and gently heat. Take the pan off the heat and stir in the breadcrumbs. Leave to cool.

4 Pour the syrup into the tart case. Toss the apple in the remaining lemon juice. Arrange the slices, overlapping, in rings over the top of the tart. Then melt the remaining butter and brush it over the apples. Bake for about 35 minutes until the apples are golden.

5 Sift the icing sugar over the top and return the tart to the oven for a further 5 minutes or until the sugar has caramelised. Leave to cool for 30 minutes, then remove the tart from the tin and cut into wedges. Serve with ice cream or custard, if you like.

Cook’s tip
Place any stale bread you have in a food processor and whizz into breadcrumbs. Separate into portions and freeze in polythene bags so that you have a ready-made supply.


Fantastic Food For Less cookbookRecipe taken from
Fantastic Food For Less
cookbook available now
at the Dairy Diary website
for just £7.99.

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