Author Archives for emmadairydiary

5 Restaurant-Style Recipes for Valentine’s Day at Home

5 Restaurant-Style Recipes for Two

No, I can’t believe its Valentine’s Day tomorrow either…

However, if anything, this past year has brought my partner and me closer than ever, and I am grateful for the endless cups of tea and the support he showed when things were difficult.

To express my appreciation, I am going to prepare a lovely restaurant-style meal for two, using delicious recipes from the cookbook Just For One Or Two.

Neither of us are starter-people, so for the main: Griddled Lamb with Fresh Pesto, served with soft and creamy celeriac mash, and wholesome ratatouille. Then for dessert: Lemon Posset topped with fresh juicy berries, one of his absolute favourites!

For more inspiration on how you can treat your loved one – which is not limited to Valentine’s Day! – take a look at our recipe collection, Restaurant-Style Meals for 2.

Win a copy of Just For One or Two

Of course, Valentine’s Day could not be celebrated properly without showing the love we have for our customers, so we are giving away a copy of the popular Just For One Or Two, which is full of perfect recipes for a restaurant-style dinner, at home.

Enter below by telling us how many recipes are found within the book. You can find the answer on Just For One Or Two’s page here.

Win a Just For One or Two cookbook.


Triple your chances of winning by heading to our Facebook and Instagram pages, where you can enter there too! Good luck.

Read more in the 
Emma Snow

Emma Snow

I am the Brand Executive for Dairy Diary. A passionate foodie (with a very sweet-tooth). Who likes to blog about all things DIY & scrumptious recipes.

Gorgeous Valentine’s gift causes a stir on social media!

Brownie Hearts

An almost too-pretty-to-eat recipe has caused quite a stir on social media!


The Brownie Hearts from the 2021 Dairy Diary have been appearing all over Instagram and Facebook, whipped-up by passionate foodies.

Now, I don’t think I can imagine anything more thoughtful than a handmade gift, whether that be a Valentine’s card from your not-so-secret-admirer, or delicious treats to enjoy.

The attention to detail and time that has been taken to craft or bake something, with me in mind is so special in my opinion.


Win a bundle of fabulous cookbooks

As it is Valentine’s Day soon, we would love to see you treat your loved-one to a batch of these brownies. Post a picture to your social media account, and don’t forget to tag us!

Our favourite will win a bundle of fabulous cookbooks stashed inside a pretty Dairy Diary shopping bag.

Emma Snow

Emma Snow

I am the Brand Executive for Dairy Diary. A passionate foodie (with a very sweet-tooth). Who likes to blog about all things DIY & scrumptious recipes.

Travel with your tastebuds

Cumberland Rum Nicky

One of my goals for 2020 was to travel to various cities and towns without stepping foot on an aeroplane


I wanted to explore the British Isles, discover regional food and learn about local traditions. Obviously, we weren’t able to do this, so I am hoping I can at least start my UK travels in 2021.

Top of my list is Cumbria – I have visited Bowness-on-Windermere and adored every second, I definitely want to return as soon as I can!

My passion to explore the UK was inspired by our popular cookbook Around Britain, which features this fabulous dessert.

Cumberland Rum Nicky is a classic dish from Cumberland in the Northwest of England and is packed full of dried fruit, ginger and rum.



Win a set of 4 Pastry Forks & Cakes PlatesPlus WIN a fabulous Portmeirion prize

You could try the Cumberland Rum Nicky recipe, regardless of where you call home – and serve it on your brand-new Sara Miller London Portmeirion Chelsea cake plates!

For a chance to win this set of pastry forks and cake plates, visit our competitions page. Or…






Emma Snow
Emma Snow

I am the Brand Executive for Dairy Diary. A passionate foodie (with a very sweet-tooth). Who likes to blog about all things DIY & scrumptious recipes.

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Christmas Family Traditions

Whether you are a new family (congratulations!) or want to try something different this year, we have put together a list of the best festive activities to help you get excited for the big day, and most importantly, to create lovely memories that will last a lifetime. 

Hot ChocolateSet up a Christmas Eve ‘Hot Chocolate Bar’

Well, this can be done on any cold evening, but it is extra special at this time of year. Make sure to have all the fancy ingredients displayed and ready to go, such as candy canes, marshmallows, coloured paper straws and sprinkles. What’s great about this one is any age can enjoy a warming mug of something sweet, you could even add a shot of brandy or Amaretto (grown-ups only!) Then snuggle up together on the sofa to watch a Christmassy film.

Free Christmas lights showFree neighbourhood light show

Great fun for both children and adults. Pick a clear evening and cram into the car wearing cosy clothes. Take a big bag of popcorn too. Drive around your local area to spot as many dazzling displays as you can. When I was a child, there was always one or two houses that always put on a fabulous display, with donations made to charity. We headed there first as it was a magical experience, one that we will always remember.

GingerbreadBake & decorate cookies or gingerbread

Fun, affordable and delicious, just don’t think about the mess… Baking together is a great family tradition. The best bit (after eating the creations) is decorating them. The biscuits don’t have to be pretty as a picture, in fact it is more enjoyable to be as creative as you like. The perfect cookies are the ones made using a recipe from the very well-used cookbook that has been in your kitchen for years, meaning they are tried-and-tested. We know you are thinking of the Dairy Book of Home Cookery of course! Try this recipe for Dainty Iced Gingerbread and decorate!

Leaving food out for Father Christmas & his reindeer!

This was a must every year in our household, homemade mince pies, a small glass of sherry and a carrot for Rudolf! On Christmas morning, we raced downstairs to find a half-eaten mince pie, a gnawed carrot and an empty glass – easy to see which was Santa’s favourite! “But why hasn’t he eaten it all, do you think he doesn’t like my mince pies?”, my mum answered with, “well, he can’t eat everyone’s mince pies in one night, can he?”. You can of course leave milk out instead of sherry or cookies if Santa isn’t a fan of mincemeat!
Emma Snow

Emma Snow

I am the Brand Executive for Dairy Diary. A passionate foodie (with a very sweet-tooth). Who likes to blog about all things DIY & scrumptious recipes.

Stocking fillers under £10

Christmas Gifts from Dairy Diary

Are you struggling for ideas when it comes to friends and family this festive season?  


We have a range of lovely gifts that are under £10!

Year after year, we keep costs down and strive to improve our products to bring our customers the best quality Diary, Cookbooks and Accessories (that will put a smile on a loved one’s face at Christmas time). 

Here’s our top five (there are of course lots more, have a browse of our website for inspiration)


Number one must be the iconic Dairy Diary!

At only £8.85 this excellent value for money diary is sure to be top of their list this year, and an essential kitchen item. Packed full of delicious recipes, cook’s tips, interesting features and plenty of writing space, whilst featuring a gorgeous cover. What’s not to love?

Dairy Diary 2021



Number two is the brand-new hardback cookbook

A Zest for Life! Containing 79 delicious, nutritious recipes that will put a spring in your stride. From bountiful breakfasts and weekend specials to tempting bakes. Only £9.99.

A Zest for Life

Number three is our fabulous Wall Planner

It’s an essential every kitchen wall. By very popular request we have now made these available to purchase for everyone, not just trade customers. A double-sided calendar with 6 months to view each side and a gorgeous recipe image. Only £2.00 for 2 wall planners.

Wall Planner 2021



Number 4 has got to be Just for One or Two

Immensely popular, it contains inspiration for easy, delicious meals – the ideal cookbook for singles, couples, students and parents. Showing you how to cook delicious meals for one or two people with little effort and minimal waste. Only £8.25.

Just for One or Two



Number 5 is our limited-edition Tote Shopping Bag

It’s roomy enough for groceries or a few cheeky spur-of-the-moment purchases, but also folds flat so that it will easily fit into a handbag. And the pretty design – and Dairy Diary logo – is featured on both sides. Only £6.99.

Tote Shopping Bag




Emma Snow
Emma Snow

I am the Brand Executive for Dairy Diary. A passionate foodie (with a very sweet-tooth). Who likes to blog about all things DIY & scrumptious recipes.

Christmas Tree Decorating Guide: 8 Top Tips

How to decorate your Christmas Tree

How to get your tree looking like the garden centre displays


We have inside knowledge from the chief tree decorator at our local garden centre, where I visit for gorgeous decorations and display inspiration every year!

They have given me some of the top tips that they follow each Christmas, to wow their customers with a winter wonderland.


Dairy Diary fans, we are delighted to share this expert advice to inspire you to create your own magical tree display at home.

Once you have picked the perfect place in your home, (which should be in a room where you can enjoy it the most and near a plug socket to avoid trailing wires), if you have an artificial tree; you should spend some time ‘fluffing’ up the branches to make sure it is as full and authentic as it can be. If you have a real tree, choose one in a pot that will last for the whole Christmas period without shedding too many needles.

Start from the top and fold over a single branch to hold the end of the fairy lights in place. Next, walk around your tree, weaving around each branch to ensure even coverage. We would advise at least 1000 lights for a 6ft tree. A little tip is to plug in the lights before you begin to check they are working (you don’t want to get to the end and realise a pesky bulb has blown!)

Colours & Themes
You can get creative with this. I usually browse Pinterest for theme ideas, or just go wild depending on how I feel that particular year. Don’t forget, it’s your tree and what you hang on the branches should ultimately make you happy! I have collected baubles and decorations over the years, each one bringing back a lovely memory and a smile to my face when they catch my eye.

Family Time
One thing about decorating the Christmas tree that I love the most is involving the whole household. Our favourite memories as children are helping to hang the baubles, whilst listening to Christmas music (and sneaking a few chocolates while we worked!). I am sure my Mum re-arranged the decorations after we had ‘helped’ as it always looked so magical afterwards. Top tip: Our Head of Dairy Diary buys each of her three children their own mini tree to decorate, their creations are always wonderful, but maybe not as neat and tidy as you’d wish for the living room display!

My top tip is the rule of odd numbers. If you find a bauble or decoration that you love, buy at least three and add them to the tree together, spaced apart equally! This will give an aesthetically pleasing balance. Make sure to also secure heavier, glass, one of a kind or more expensive baubles by folding the branch over the tie.

Tree Skirt
This has only been a recent discovery in our household, during the last 5 years or so. We opt for a grey wicker tree skirt, to hide the unsightly wires and plastic tree base, which distracts from the magic. If you have a real tree, a tree skirt will also help to catch the needles.

Your tree might look fabulous without this, but we always opt for a statement decoration to adorn our hard work. You could go for the classic star, an angel or something a little quirkier. Artificial flowers have been popular in recent years, so have beautiful bows. The choice is yours, and there are lots to choose from!

This is the extra mile, and it may not be suitable if you have young children around. It may raise some awkward questions about the man in the red suit… BUT if you manage to get your Christmas shopping done a little earlier you could wrap them using beautiful wrapping paper, bows and tags, to match your tree theme. It finishes off the look with great effect. You could just wrap empty boxes if you haven’t been that organised this year and if you have family members who just can’t resist giving them a little shake!


Dairy Diary Advent CalendarHope you enjoyed reading our first 2020 Advent blog and took away some good tips!

As always, we would love to see your creations! Please share a picture of your beautiful Christmas tree and tag us on Facebook, or Instagram.

Make sure to use the below hashtags!

And check our exciting Advent calendar every day for more tips, giveaways and treats.


Emma Snow
Emma Snow

I am the Brand Executive for Dairy Diary. A passionate foodie (with a very sweet-tooth). Who likes to blog about all things DIY & scrumptious recipes.


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