Monday, 28 May 2018

Chicken divan

Great chicken and broccoli recipe. Thanks Jen Schmidt at Balancing Beauty and Bedlam. It even makes me want to buy tinned soup....


  • 2 (10 ounce) packages frozen broccoli spears (or what you have on hand)
  • 6 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
  • 2 (10 3/4 ounce) cans cream of chicken (or your choice. I’ve mixed mushroom, chicken and even cream of celery soup. If you have homemade made up, even better.)
  • 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar Cheese, sharp
  • 1/2 cup mayo
  • 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1/2 cup fine, dry breadcrumbs*
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • seasoning salt, pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Cook broccoli in microwave according to package.
  3. When broccoli is finished, place broccoli in a greased 9×13 baking dish and top with chicken. Liberally salt and pepper chicken breast. I use a basic seasoning salt or garlic salt.
  4. While broccoli is cooking in microwave begin sauce.
  5. Combine soup and next 3 ingredients in saucepan.
  6. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until the cheese melts.
  7. Pour sauce over chicken and broccoli.
  8. Sprinkle with breadcrumbs and drizzle butter over breadcrumbs.
  9. Bake, uncovered for 40 minutes or until chicken is done. (Check at 30 minutes and cut small slice in middle of one chicken breast to check.)
Preparation time: 10 minute(s)

Saturday, 17 March 2018

Clementine chicken

Or tangerine chicken. Or even orange chicken.  #anythingwillwork

Had a friend (Wendy, dear dear Renee's daughter, my age, ex-teacher, great reader, lovely sense of humour and as caring as her wonderful mother....) to lunch.  It had to be a slow-cooker job as we were in church all morning, so....

Chicken.6 - 8 thigh fillets
6 small clementines
1 small onion
1 carton (284ml) single cream

Brown 6 - 8 thigh fillets or chicken breasts with one finely chopped onion in butter.
While it is cooking, place three sliced clementines (the kind that are DIFFICULT to peel, not the kidn with loose skin) and four small new sprigs of rosemary at the base of the cooker.
Put the chicken on top, add another couple of tiny clementines, sliced, season.
Deglaze the pan with a little water - perhaps 50ml or a little more.
Cook for 4 hours on high.

Mix a large tablespoon of cornflour with a little cream. Add a ladle of juice/stock from the slow cooker, stir, return to slow-cooker. Heat up remainder of a 280ml carton of single cream in the microwave until hot but not boiling, add to slow-cooker. Let cook for a further 20 minutes if there is time, tasting and adjusting seasoning with a squeeze of lemon juice and more salt if required.

Absolutely delicious served with rice and mixed salad.

Thursday, 30 November 2017

Red bean chocolate cake - from Australia

  • Easy red kidney bean cake from Australia.

  • 420 g canned kidney beans drained
  • 1 tbs coffee (liquid)
  • 1 tbs vanilla extract
  • 70 g cocoa powder unsweetened
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 125 g butter
  • 5 egg
  • 180 g sugar

  • In a food processor, puree the beans, water/coffee, 1 egg and vanilla until smooth. Set aside.
  • STEP 2Combine butter and sugar in a food processor or using an electric beater, until pale and fluffy.
  • STEP 3Add the remaining eggs one at a time, processing or beating well after each addition.
  • STEP 4Add bean mixture and process or beat until combined.
  • STEP 5Add sifted cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt and mix well.
  • STEP 6Pour batter into a 22 cm greased round or ring pan and bake for approximately 35 minutes at 180C. The cake will spring back when touched and skewer will come out clean when cooked.
  • Notes  It does rise quite a bit, but seems to deflate once it's out of the oven. You can use white beans and replace the cocoa with coconut flour (or finely ground coconut). Last time I made it I topped it with a choc butter icing as well. Water can substitute coffee.

Sunday, 26 November 2017

Slow cooker creamy chicken, leeks and mushrooms

This is my recipe, but I found a very similar one at 

Put in slow cooker:
3 large thinly sliced leeks
1 cup cubed potatoes (optional - may leave out if serving with mashed potatoes)
750g chicken pieces: thigh or breast fillets, seasoned with salt and pepper.
Pour over a good half to one cup lemon juice or white wine. 
Cook on High.

After 3 hours, add 100 - 200g thickly sliced mushrooms and 3 large cloves of garlic, crushed.
Cook for another hour, then remove lid. 
Add half to one cup of cream, or to taste.
Cook for a further hour, half covering with lid if it looks as if the liquid is not simmering well.

Total cooking time: 5 hours on high.

More good slow cooker recipes here.

Saturday, 18 November 2017

Pumpkin curry

  • about 600 g pumpkin or butternut squash, cut into equal size cubes, roasted or microwaved until quite soft
  • 1 tsp black mustard or cumin seeds - dry fry for 1 minute
  • Fry 1 small red onion, finely chopped in2 tbsp  oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 4 tsp finely grated ginger OR 1 small piece, grated, plus 2 tsps ground giner
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp hot chilli powder
  • 2 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
Cook together for a couple of minutes

Add 1 cup coconut milk or cream, or 1 sachet creamed coconut dissolved in 1 cup hot water, adjust liquid as necessary.
Add cooked pumpkin, stir well until combined/coated, season with salt and pepper to taste,

Serve with:
  • a handful of coriander chopped
  • lime wedges, to serve
  • handful of cashews, lightly toasted (to serve)

Sunday, 12 November 2017

White chocolate lemon and coconut truffles

Recipe from Make Do and Mend.

  • 200g Fairtrade White Chocolate-I get 200g bars from Waitrose-they are fairtrade, and come in just paper and foil packaging, rather than plastic. And it’s pretty good value too.
  • 60ml double cream
  • 15g butter
  • 35g dessicated coconut + extra for coating
  • zest of one unwaxed lemon
  • Break the chocolate up into squares and place in a heatproof bowl with the cream
  • Place the bowl on top of a saucepan of boiling water, ensuring that the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water
  • Stir the chocolate and cream to combine as the chocolate melts
  • Once the chocolate has melted and is all mixed in with the cream, carefully remove the bowl from the top of the saucepan, and stir the butter into the chocolate mix
  • Add the lemon zest and coconut and stir well
  • Place in the fridge for about 30mins to set a bit
  • Remove from the fridge and scoop out teaspoons of mix. Roll into balls, and then roll the balls in dessicated coconut to coat the outside
  • Plop them into a clean empty jam jar, and store in the fridge ready for gifting (or devouring yourself…!)

Friday, 20 October 2017

Gluten free carrot cake from GLUTENFREECUPPATEA

Carrot cake recipe from glutenfreecuppatea:

For the cake
  1. * 150ml vegetable oil
  2. * 2 eggs
  3. * 140g soft light brown sugar
  4. * 170g gluten free self raising flour
  5. * 2 tsp cinnamon
  6. * 2 tsp all spice
  7. * 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  8. * 140g carrots, grated
  9. * 30g walnuts, chopped
  10. * 30g pecans, chopped
  11. * 1 orange, zest and a few tbsp of juice
For the icing
  1. * 200g dairy free cream cheese (I use Tofutti)
  2. * 50g dairy free spread
  3. * 90g icing sugar, sifted (I often end up adding a little more but I think this is a good starting point)
  4. * pecan and walnuts, crushed (for decoration on top)
  1. 1) Line a 2lb loaf tin (standard size) with greaseproof/parchment paper.
  2. 2) Preheat the oven to about 180C/160C Fan.
  3. 3) Whisk together your oil and eggs.
  4. 4) Mix together your sugar, gluten free flour, cinnamon, all spice and bicarbonate of soda in a large bowl.
  5. 5) Add to your bowl the grated carrot, a few tbsp of the juice from your orange (optional) and the orange zest, chopped pecans and walnuts and the egg/oil mixture. Then mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon.
  6. 6) Pour/spoon into your loaf tin and bake in the middle of your preheated oven for around 50 - 55 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean. Leave the cake to cool in the tin.
  7. 7) Whilst your gluten free carrot cake cools, make the icing. Beat together all your icing ingredients in a bowl, ensure your icing sugar is sifted and you might also choose to add some more icing sugar if you want a thicker consistency (I usually make my icing by hand but you can use an electric whisk if you prefer).
  8. 8) Spread over the top of your completely cooled gluten free carrot cake and then liberally sprinkle with crushed pecans and walnuts.