Tortilla Mini Pizza

Are you looking for a dinner time hack this weekend? If so, you’re in the right place!

These Tortilla mini Pizzas are yummy and perfect as a quick meal time solution – for both kids and adults.

Ingredients:

Pack of mini Tortillas

Tin of tomatoes – blitzed in the mixture

Cheese

Toppings of choice (I used Spinach, chorizo and Parma ham)

Dried mixed herbs

Pepper

Olive oil or low fat cooking spray

Method:

Quite simple grill one side of the tortillas and spread over the tomatoes. Sprinkle with cheese, add your topping of choice. Season well and add the herbs. Drizzle over some oil and grill for a couple of minutes! Serve with a side salad and enjoy X

Beetroot Houmous

Just looking at this beetroot Houmous makes me feel insanely happy. The colour is so vibrant, it’s hard not to break into a smile just looking at it. It also tastes as good it looks and is so easy to whiz up.

Ingredients:

Half a tin of cooked chick peas (plus half of the juice it’s in)

150g pre cooked beetroot

1tbsp Olive oil

1tbsp Tahini paste

Juice of half a lemon

2 cloves of garlic

Seasoning as required

Method:

Quite simply pop everything into the blender and pulse for a few seconds. Add a bit more lemon if required and season to taste.

Bon appetite!

Prosecco Teriyaki Sauce

Do you have Prosecco left in the fridge? Give this easy Teriyaki sauce a go! It marries beautifully with Salmon.

Ingredients;

350ml Water

75ml Soy sauce

2tbsp Prosecco

4cm piece of Ginger, peeled and grated

80g Light brown sugar

2 cloves of garlic, crushed and finely chopped

1tbsp plain flour, mixed with a small amount of water into a paste

Method;

Measure out and prepare all of your ingredients, then grab yourself a small saucepan. Place onto a low heat and add the sugar, water, ginger and garlic. Bring up to a simmer and leave to gently cook for about 5 minutes. Add the flour paste and bring to the boil, continuously whisking. Once you have a silky sauce, give it a quick blend with a hand held mixer (optional) and then mix in the Prosecco. Remove from the heat. If not using straightaway, once cold this can be kept in the fridge for up to 1 week.

Enjoy!!!

Cranberry Sauce – The Easy Way

So, we are 4 sleeps away until the big man arrives. We are all quite chilled here, the kids have been helping me out in the kitchen this afternoon. We’re having so much fun. Today we’ve made Cranberry sauce – it’s so easy, the kids actually did most of it. Of course, pick up a jar if you don’t have time to make up fresh. We don’t judge, whatever works for you! However, if you do have 8-10 mins then give it a go.

Ingredients;

350g Fresh Cranberries

200ml Fresh Orange hioce

150g Light Muscovado sugar

Method;

Place the sugar and orange juice into a saucepan and gently bring up to boiling point, stirring occasionally. Add the cranberries and reduce to a simmer.

Cook for 8 – 10 minutes until most of the cranberries have split. Remove from the heat. The sauce will thicken as it cools.

Merry Christmas everyone, we hope your preparations are going well xxx

Throw Back Thursday – Breakfast Bircher Pots – Morning Hack

For those of you who need to grab and go with your breakfast (snap!) I’ve been trying out breakfast pots, which you can make up the night before and grab from the fridge to eat whenever you get a sec on the train/bus/school run/at work. Continue reading “Throw Back Thursday – Breakfast Bircher Pots – Morning Hack”

Parma Ham Chicken stuffed with Mozzarella & Pesto

Whilst at the supermarket, my trolley of food was complimented by the friendly cashier. We got chatting and she told me of her quick go to recipe. This is it. I’ve had this loads of times, minus the mozzarella. This is for you lovely lady – love the fact that anywhere around the world people share their love of food & recipes!

first off, lay some Palma ham underneath each Chicken breast and then simply slice the top of chicken breast fillets (skin off) 3 times.

Stuff each pocket with green pesto and then add in some mozzarella. Lay some fresh Thyme across the chicken and then wrap with the ham.

Pop into a preheated oven (170•C) for about 35 minutes, until the chicken fillets are cooked through.

Whilst cooking, make up some mashed potato, add a couple of spoonfuls of mustard and plate up. Serve with your vegetable or salad of choice and enjoy!

Easy, hearty and delish leftover Chicken Stew

Happy Autumnal Thursday lovely people. After sharing the snap of my a scrummy chicken stew dinner on Monday night a few of you have asked for the recipe, so here it is.

(Those of you who know me well will know I’m a chuck-it in kind of girl, so the measurements are down to your individual cooking style!).

  • Cooked chicken carcass (from your roast – mine was stuffed with lemons and garlic so leave any stuffing in for flavour and I also like to pour over any left over gravy for flavour too)
  • Stock pots (one chicken one vegetable)
  • Potato
  • Sweet potato
  • Celery
  • Carrots
  • Left over veggies (if you have roasties chop them up small they’re a great thickener)
  • Green lentils (mine were tinned) or Pearl Barley
  • Sweetcorn (canned or frozen is fine)
  • Salt & Pepper and a bay leaf to season

Method

  1. Put your chicken carcass and any gravy in a large pot. Boil the kettle and pour over enough water to mostly cover the carcass (it’s ok if some isn’t covered, they’re tricky shaped, those chickens)
  2. Add any chopped left over potatoes, parsnips or sweet potatoes at this point as they will dissolve and help to thicken the stew. Also chop the celery finely and add now too.
  3. Add salt and pepper and a bay leaf and simmer on a low heat for about two hours or until the chicken comes away from the bones easily.
  4. Leave to cool (just enough so you don’t burn the skin of your fingers) and pick out all the chicken bones and assorted bits you don’t want to eat. I like to do this with a large slotted spoon and have a big bowl ready for all the discarded bits and pieces. Make sure you check really thoroughly for small bits of bone in the stock.
  5. When you’ve been through the pot and are pretty sure that everything is edible, then you can add your stock cubes and I also add the sweet potato here so it completely disappears in to the stew (mostly to avoid the accusatory “What’s that, Mum?” from the eldest bundle of joy). If your tiny humans are a bit less fussy then pop this in at the end with the carrots.
  6. Cook for about 45 mins until the offending sweet potato has pretty much disappeared from sight and then add the potato and cook for 5-10 minutes and then add your carrots and sweet potato here. Cook for about 20 mins until almost cooked through. If at any point it’s running a little dry, add a few splashes of boiling water.
  7. Pop in your canned lentils and sweetcorn to cook. Season to taste. I also popped some chopped parsley on mine which adds a lovely freshness.
  8. Serve with a lovely wedge of buttered bread and enjoy that lovely warm hug in a bowl.

A note of caution – trying to serve this two days in a row did not go down well with fussy eldest bundle of joy. “Why do we have to eat the same thing two days in a row? It’s not fair”). Fortunately the other two happily scoffed the rest so my eldest joy didn’t have to put up with it three days in a row. Shame.

Happy Thursday lovely people.

Tahlia x

Do you suffer from lower back or hip pain? It could be your glutes…

Hello lovely people here. I’ve recently learnt a few things about the way my body works, and I want to share it with you – I suspect a few of you may also recognise my story.

I like to stay fit, and exercise four or five times a week – a mix of bootcamp, running, yoga, pilates. It keeps a smile on my face, and helps make allowances for the wine and chocolate in my life. I’d consider myself to be quite a fit person generally, but over the last few years I’ve had nagging back and hip pain which comes and goes, but more recently has been coming more than it’s going.

Last night an Osteopath saved my life…

Ok, so that’s a bit dramatic for a headline but it made me sing ‘last night a DJ saved my life’ so that’s lovely. In truth though, my visit to see the lovely Anna has been a revelation. She asked me so many questions, looked at the ‘whole me’ by talking about my underachieve thyroid and the impact it has on my life and body, and genuinely wanted to delve into the ‘why’.

Turns out I’m a bit wonky (from birth, apparently) but also that I have an underactive left glute too. A marathon runner with glutes that don’t work = sore back and hips!

So, before I jump headfirst in to getting my miles up for the London Marathon next year, I need to work on some core muscles first. Glutes and abs. As well as helping me avoid injury, it should also help me run faster (and maybe give me a figure like Beyonce?). Perhaps the last wish is a step too far, but the first two are definitely achievable.

The good news

It’s do-able – I can build my core and abs, but with smaller and much more intense moves than my usual bootcamp repertoire. So, I’m going back to exercise school and am using a circuit of pilates and pilates-type moves to build things up. Here’s what I’m doing…

  • Skaters
  • Copenhagen
  • Bent Knee Side Plank
  • Hip thrusters (with band)
  • Single leg hip thrusters

Give them a go, and see if they make a difference! You might need to build up from small reps e.g. 4/5 like I did!

I’ve also bought myself some resistance bands to stabilise my exercises, which I’ve been using every day. I’ll share the bands I bought from Amazon below. They aren’t the cheapest available, but they do come with free training videos and recipes too, as well as a practical exercise card book to help you follow the training.

I’ve also booked on to Spin to keep up the cardio, and to help keep the lbs down 🙂

Happy squeezing, lovely people.

Tahlia X

Hassle Free Chicken With Chilli, Lemon And Mint

Every now and again I really get stuck in a rut at meal times. As you probably know by now, I love flavour. This is something that my kids don’t always agree with me on! And who can blame them right? I don’t remember eating the type of food I try to cook for them. Our meals were always the same most week days. I always knew Tuesday would be Lasagne, Friday would be fish fingers and we’d almost always have a roast on a Sunday. Nothing wrong with that. Absolutely not. It’s just not me these days.

So anyway, here I was feeling a bit stuck. Dinner needed to be quick and tasty. My fridge was also looking a bit on the bare side. I therefore decided to get some inspiration from my recipe books, and I came across this little beauty. To make matters better, I had all of the ingredients to hand. That is always a bonus. Especially when you live in the back end of nowhere.

This recipe is lifted straight from Nigel Slaters classic guide to comfort food. It really did hit all the right notes and was so easy to make.

Ingredients:

400g Chicken fillets

1 medium sized red chilli, seeded and chopped

1tsp dried chilli powder

2 pinches of saffron

2 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped

Handful of mint leaves (about 20)

4 tbsp olive oil

Juice of 1 lemon

Halves of lemons to serve

Method:

Cut the chicken into finger size strips and pop into a dish. Blitz the fresh and dried Chillies, the garlic, saffron, most of the mint , olive oil and most of the lemon juice for about seconds until you have a lumpy marinade.

Spoon the marinade over the chicken strips and set aside for half an hour or so.

Next up, heat a frying pan (or you can use the grill) and lightly oil it. Add the chicken to the pan and gently fry for 4-5 minutes on each side until they are golden brown in places (make sure the chilli doesn’t burn). Season the dish with some salt and the remaining mint and lemon juice.

I served this (as suggested by Nigel Slater) with some well buttered couscous, flecked with coriander and coriander. I also added a blob of Creme Fraiche on top, which I mixed some finely chopped mint leaves into.

Bon appetite lovely people! I hope you enjoy it as much as we did.

Salmon And Cod Laksa With Soba Noodles

Originating from maritime South East Asia, Laksa curry is a must for curry fans. It’s fragrant smells will drive you insane!

This is a really simple version that I put together on a week night. But just because it was quick (think 10 minutes) doesn’t mean it lacked in flavour! It packed the punches and hit all the right taste buds. I made up my own version of a Laksa paste, however they are readily available in the shops should this be your preference.

Ingredients for the Laksa paste;

4-6 small dried red chillies

1tsp ground coriander

1/2tsp paprika

1/2tsp cumin

1/2tsp turmeric

1 small onion, roughly chopped

1tsp lemongrass paste

3-4 cm piece of ginger, shredded

2 cloves of garlic

1tbsp sesame oil

Ingredients for the Curry;

500g Salmon & Cod fillets, skin off and cut into chunks

200g Coconut milk

1 1/2 pints of Vegetable stock

1tbsp olive pil

1 onion, finely sliced

200g green beans, trimmed and cut into quarters

225g shredded white cabbage

3 tbsp Laksa paste

Handful of frozen sweet corn

2 bundles of dried soba noodles

1 spring onion, sliced diagonally

1 lime, halved

Method for Laksa paste;

Pop everything into a mixer and blitz for a few seconds into a smooth (ish) paste.

Method for Laksa Curry;

Warm up a large saucepan and add the olive oil. Gently fry the onion and cabbage for about 10 minutes, until softened. Add the Laksa paste and cook for 2 minutes.

Next up, add the coconut milk, stock and green beans and season well. Bring up to the boil and then reduce the heat and leave to simmer for about 5 minutes.

Add the fish chunks and gently stir the mixture.

Leave to cook for about 4 – 5 or until the fish is opaque to their centre.

Meanwhile, bring a large pan of water to boil and add in the soba noodles.

Cook for 4 minutes and drain and return to the pan.

Once the fish is cooked, stir in the curry. Serve out into large bowls and garnish with sliced spring onions and halves of limes.