Monthly Archives: February 2017

Top 8 Colourful Gardens to Visit

Top Gardens to Visit

Colourful Gardens to Visit

The nights and mornings are getting lighter at last and it’s getting a little bit warmer. So now’s the time to think about venturing out, and enjoy what the UK has to offer.

This year’s edition of the Dairy Diary has a feature on colour in our gardens and also includes this list of stunning gardens to visit.

Gardens to Visit

The white garden at Sissinghurst, Kent

Hidcote, in Gloucestershire, famed for its twin red borders

The winter gardens at Dunham Massey, Cheshire

Great Dixter in East Sussex, for unusual colour schemes

Beth Chatto Gardens, Essex, for garden artistry

The herbaceous border at Arley Hall, Cheshire

Harlow Carr, the RHS garden in Yorkshire, pushing the boundaries of design and planting styles

Barnsdale Gardens, Rutland, described as a ‘theme park for gardeners’

Check opening times and facilities before visiting.

 

I can personally recommend Hidcote, which is just gorgeous, and Dunham Massey, which is at its best at this time of year.

You could forego the expensive afternoon tea on offer and instead take with you a flask and some scrummy melting moments.

 


 

 

Oatie Melting Moments recipe

Oatie Melting Moments

  • Servings: 24 biscuits
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Calories 74 per portion
Fat 4.2g (2.5g sat) per portion
Suitable for vegetarians
Suitable for freezing

Ingredients

  • Butter 110g (4oz), softened
  • Caster sugar 75g (3oz)
  • Egg yolk 1
  • Vanilla extract a few drops
  • Self-raising flour 150g (5oz)
  • Rolled oats 25g (1oz)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 190°C/170°fan/Gas 5 and grease two baking sheets.
  2. Cream together butter and sugar until pale and fluffy, then beat in egg yolk and vanilla.
  3. Stir in flour to give a soft dough, knead until smooth, then divide into 24 portions. Form each portion into a ball, then gently roll in oats.
  4. Place on baking sheets and bake for 15-20 minutes until golden. Cool slightly before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

 

#gardens

#bakingbiscuits

#nationaltrust

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Best Ever Family Recipes: Speedy Chocolate Sponge Puddings

Speedy Chocolate Sponge Puddings

Best Ever Family Recipes:
Speedy Chocolate Sponge Puddings

 

Rich, chocolatey and moist sponge puddings with vanilla ice cream.

What’s not to like? These easy puds are great fun to make and always go down a storm. Sometimes, we mix it up a bit and serve with mint choc chip ice cream – mmmmmm.

Fantastic Food For Less cookbookThis scrumptious recipe is taken from one of my favourites books;
Fantastic Food for Less, which has 100 absolutely gorgeous dishes.

There are two types of recipes:
Quick & Easy – can be on the table in 30 minutes or less.
Take it Easy – allowing you to do something else while they cook slowly.

Now that is helpful!

And at only £5.99 it’s an absolute steal.

Click here for more information.

 


 

Speedy Chocolate Sponge Puddings

Speedy Chocolate Sponge Puddings

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Calories 655 per portion
Fat 40g (23.8g sat) per portion
Suitable for vegetarians

Ingredients

  • Unsalted butter 150g (5oz), softened, plus a little extra for greasing
  • Caster sugar 110g (4oz) plus 2 tsp
  • Self-raising flour 110g (4oz)
  • Baking powder ¼ tsp
  • Cocoa 2 tbsp
  • Egg 1 large
  • Vanilla extract 1 tsp
  • Dark chocolate 110g (4oz), broken into small pieces
  • Milk 3 tbsp
  • Vanilla ice cream to serve (optional)

Instructions

  1. Thoroughly grease individual pudding basins or microwave-suitable teacups with butter. Place 110g (4oz) of butter and 110g (4oz) of caster sugar in a mixing bowl, sift the flour, baking powder and cocoa into the bowl, then add the egg, vanilla and 2 tablespoons of water. With an electric hand-held mixer, whisk the ingredients together until smooth.
  2. Divide the chocolate mixture evenly between the pudding basins or teacups, loosely cover with cling film and microwave on high for 4 – 5 minutes, until the sponge is well risen and springy to the touch. Remove from the microwave and allow to stand while making the sauce.
  3. To make the sauce: Put the chocolate in a small bowl with the 2 tsp sugar, the remaining butter and the milk. Place over a saucepan of gently simmering water and stir until smooth.
  4. Run a palette knife around each pudding to loosen, trim the tops level if necessary, then turn the puddings out onto individual plates and coat with the chocolate sauce. Serve with ice cream, if you like.

Cook’s tip

For marmalade puddings, omit the cocoa and vanilla and replace with the zest and juice from 1 orange. Spoon 50g (2oz) marmalade into each cup or basin before adding the sponge mixture. There’s no need to make the sauce, simply serve with custard.

 

#BestEverFamilyRecipes

#chocolatespongepudding

#Family

#Delicious

Recipe of the Week: Fresh Fruit with Chocolate Dip

 Fruits with Chocolate Dip

This delicious little treat is only 255 calories, so you can enjoy it guilt-free!

Fresh Fruit with Chocolate Dip

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Calories 255 per portion
Fat 11g (6g sat) per portion
Suitable for vegetarians

Ingredients

  • Dark chocolate 75g (3oz), broken into pieces
  • Milk 2 tbsp
  • Mixed fruit, such as strawberries, blueberries, blackberries and raspberries 350g (12oz)

Instructions

  1. Put the chocolate and milk in a heatproof bowl and set it over a pan of barely simmering water. Stir until it has melted, making sure it doesn’t overheat.
  2. Remove the pan from the heat and stir to make a smooth, thick glossy sauce.
  3. Carefully remove the bowl from the pan and pour the chocolate into a small pot. Serve immediately with the berries to dip into the chocolate sauce.

 


Just For One Or Two cookbook

This delicious recipe is taken from our sell-out cookbook (now on its second print run) Just for One or Two.

Find out more about this popular book here.

And happy Valentine’s Day for tomorrow!

#recipesfortwo

 

 

 

 

 

3 Easy Recipes for Two

3 easy recipes for two on Valentines Day

Enjoy a romantic dinner at home with these delicious recipes.

The starter and main can be prepared in advance (cook the main while eating your starter) and the pud only takes 10 minutes to create.

Giving you more time to spend gazing into each other’s eyes!!

 Potted Shrimp

Potted Shrimps

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Calories 281 per portion
Fat 21g (14g sat) per portion

Ingredients

  • Unsalted butter 50g (2oz)
  • Shrimps 150g (5oz), shelled weight
  • Ground nutmeg a pinch
  • Ground mace a pinch
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Brown bread or hot toast to serve

Instructions

  1. Gently melt the butter in a small saucepan over a very low heat. Simmer gently until a foam rises to the top then remove the foam with a spoon.
  2. Carefully pour the clarified butter from the top into a jug and discard the milky residue underneath.
  3. Melt half of the clarified butter and stir in the shrimps, nutmeg, mace and seasoning to taste. Spoon the mixture into two ramekin dishes and chill until the mixture has set.
  4. Melt the remaining clarified butter and spoon over the top of the shrimps. Chill once again until the mixture has set.
  5. Serve with toast or crusty brown bread, using the butter layer on top of the ramekins to spread on the toast first.

Cook’s tips
If you can’t find shrimps buy small prawns instead.
For special occasions, multiply the quantities by the number of people you are feeding and make the ramekins look pretty with sprigs of dill and a little caviar.

Baked Salmon

Baked Salmon Tricolore

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Calories 726 per portion
Fat 61g (11g sat) per portion

Ingredients

  • Firm avocado 1 large
  • Lemon juice 1 tbsp
  • Tomatoes 2 large, thickly sliced
  • Olive oil 2 tbsp
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Garlic mayonnaise 2 tbsp
  • Grated Parmesan cheese 3 tbsp
  • Chopped basil 2 tbsp
  • Salmon fillets 2 x 150g (5oz)
  • Rocket leaves to serve (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas 6. Line a baking dish with baking parchment.
  2. Cut the avocado in half and prise out the stone. Peel off the skin and then slice thickly. Arrange in a single layer in the baking dish. Sprinkle with lemon juice. Put the tomatoes in the dish and drizzle with half the oil. Season well.
  3. Mix the mayonnaise with the Parmesan cheese and chopped basil. Lay the fish on top of the avocado and tomatoes and spread the mayonnaise mixture on top of the fish. Then drizzle with the remaining oil.
  4. Bake the salmon in the oven for about 20 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fish, until cooked through and tender. Drain and serve immediately with fresh rocket leaves.

Cook’s tips
Choose a slightly under-ripe avocado for this recipe – it will be easier to peel and slice; the flesh will soften slightly on baking.
If you don’t have garlic mayonnaise, mix ordinary mayo with 1 crushed garlic clove.

 Fruits with Chocolate Dip

Fresh Fruit with Chocolate Dip

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Calories 255 per portion
Fat 11g (6g sat) per portion
Suitable for vegetarians

Ingredients

  • Dark chocolate 75g (3oz), broken into pieces
  • Milk 2 tbsp
  • Mixed fruit, such as strawberries, blueberries, blackberries and raspberries 350g (12oz)

Instructions

  1. Put the chocolate and milk in a heatproof bowl and set it over a pan of barely simmering water. Stir until it has melted, making sure it doesn’t overheat.
  2. Remove the pan from the heat and stir to make a smooth thick glossy sauce.
  3. Carefully remove the bowl from the pan and pour the chocolate into a small pot. Serve immediately with the berries to dip into the chocolate sauce.

 


 

Just For One Or Two cookbookThese delicious recipes are taken from our sell-out cookbook (now on its second print run) Just for One or Two.

Find out more about this popular book here.

 

And happy Valentine’s Day for tomorrow!

 

#recipesfortwo

#valentinesrecipes

#valentinesday

#chocolatedip

 

 

Recipe of the Week: Cauliflower ‘Rice’

This delicious side dish is gorgeous with lamb and gives you another of your five-a-day.

Who needs carbs when you have cauliflower?!

(And you can treat yourself to a biscuit afterwards!)

 

Cauliflower Rice

Cauliflower ‘Rice’

  • Servings: 3-4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Calories 76 per portion
Fat 3.6g (0.5g sat) per portion
Suitable for vegetarians

Ingredients

  • Cauliflower 1, broken into florets
  • Ground coriander 1 tsp
  • Olive oil 1 tbsp
  • Chopped mint 2-3 tbsp

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 200°C/180°fan/Gas 6. Place cauliflower florets into a food processor and pulse several times to give a rice-like texture.
  2. Season well and mix with coriander and oil, then spread on a baking sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes until it has a dry but fluffy texture.
  3. Stir in mint, season to taste and serve alongside your chosen fish or meat and vegetables.

 

#cauliflowerrice

#dairydiaryrecipe

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