The Calm Me Down Smoothie!

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Recently there has been a lot of change to my daily routine as now my two boys are in school and I find myself alone at home with our pet rabbit Alfie. It’s lovely having some quiet time but mostly I find myself constantly running around like a headless chicken.  This morning I went food shopping which I absolutely adore.  I feel all stocked up and ready to invent more recipes. . I also cleaned the kitchen!

For when I need to calm down and relax I have come up with this wonderful soothing smoothie recipe to help me unwind.  No caffeine, no added sugar just pure peaceful bliss. The chamomile and mint tea does the trick!

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INGREDIENTS

200ml of cold mint & chamomile tea
1 small banana
1 nectarine in halves
Handful of frozen blueberries
Handful of baby spinach

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METHOD

Place all the ingredients into a blender or NutriBullet and blitz till smooth.  Serve with ice if desired

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A Minty Fruit Smoothie

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We are going to have pizza tonight, so an hour before I decided to line my stomach with a fresh minty and fruity smoothie.  This way I’ll feel a little less guilty knowing that I have fruit in my tummy before I consume huge amounts of pizza yumminess!

INGREDIENTS

1 small banana peeled
7 strawberries
1 pear sliced into chunks
A few sprigs of fresh mint
1 cup pineapple juice

METHOD

Blitz all the ingredients in a Nutri Bullet or blender until smooth

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Serve with some ice or add a little water if the smoothie is too thick

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Mature Cheddar Soufflé with Tefal

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It is difficult making soufflés but what if I told you, I have a machine that will not only mix the ingredients but cook the base of the soufflé and all you have to do is follow the simple instructions and place the soufflés to bake.

INTERESTED?  I’ve caught your attention right?!

Ok, so I’m going to take you back to August last year when I was approached by Tefal to trial out a new kitchen product, and what a product it is!  I am now allowed to show this wonderful piece of apparatus as it is about to be on UK shelves in September this year.  It proved to be a very popular and extremely useful tool in the kitchen.

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It cooks, chops, mixes, whisks.  Making all types of dishes from your simple sauces to exquisite sweet delicacies. Not forgetting hearty meals that can be prepped and cooked in the one machine, especially for those Autumn and winter nights approaching.  You are able to plug this in, follow the recipe, set the Cuisine Companion, then sit back with a large glass of vino

I will be making many more recipes with the Tefal CC but for now I will indulge your eyes and tastebuds with these mature cheddar cheese soufflés!

INGREDIENTS

40g plain flour
30g butter
500 ml milk
150g grated mature Cheddar cheese
4 eggs
Salt & pepper to taste

METHOD

Preheat the oven to 180°c.  Place the flour and milk in the cuisine companion food processor with the mixer attachment.  Season with salt and pepper then mix at speed 7 for 1 minute,  Add the butter, launch the sauce programme for 8 minutes, set at 90°c speed 4

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In the meantime separate the egg whites from the yolks.  At the end of the program, throw in the grated cheddar, mix for 1 minute at speed 8.  Combine the yolks in to the mixture and mix for 45 seconds

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Pour the cheese mixture into a large bowl and wash the food processor bowl

Place the egg whites into the cleaned bowl, fit with the mixer attachment again.  Start the food processor at speed 7 for 7.5 minutes without the stopper

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Grease 6 to 8 small glass ramekins, gently fold the egg whites in to the cheese mixture.  Pour individually up to the top of each ramekin.  Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, without opening the oven door.  The soufflés will be ready when risen, golden brown and still have a little wobble to them.  Eat immediately for a fluffy sensation

To make soufflés by hand see http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/4805/cheese-souffl-in-4-easy-steps-

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Alphonso Mango & Walnut Smoothie

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This time last year we were all craving Alphonso Indian mangoes!
Luckily this year we have been able to have them over from India and we are definitely making the most of them.

Extremely sweet in taste and velvety in texture! Allows this particular variety of mango to be a natural partner to acidic strawberries in a smoothie.

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The walnuts add nutrition but also gives body to the whole drink. One that goes on my super healthy smoothie list!

INGREDIENTS

1 alphonso mango
Large handful of strawberries
1 clementine
2 shelled walnuts
Water

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METHOD

Blitz all ingredients together. For a creamier taste add a tablespoon of natural yoghurt

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A Vibrant Halloumi & Quinoa Salad

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Quinoa is one of my favourite grains   I wanted to make a vibrant colourful and extremely tasty salad dish as the sun is out here in the UK and wanted something fresh and light to keep me going all day.  This particular recipe has done exactly that! I have not had to snack on anything since I had it at lunch and I’ve just finished my dinner so it really works!

A few steps to prep and then just to mix all together, voila!  You have your healthy salad for the day.

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INGREDIENTS

1 small cup quinoa cooked
Halloumi pan fried and diced
1 medium cucumber diced finely
2 tomatoes diced
4 spring onions slice
1 tin sweet corn drained
Baby spinach sliced
Salt to taste
Cayenne pepper
1 tsp cumin & coriander powder
Lemon juice to taste

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METHOD

I fry the halloumi cheese by thinly slicing and then placing into a hot non stick pan with olive oil.  Fry off on both sides until golden brown

Place all the ingredients into a large bowl.  Mix thoroughly so everything is fused together

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Ready to serve…How simple was that?

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Waffling Away….

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Finally I was able to get my hands on a waffle maker.  I saw it sitting pretty in my parents kitchen and I knew I had to borrow it.  My 4 year old loves sweet waffles so I thought why not try some savoury ones.  But they weren’t for him! However my husband and I, just couldn’t stop eating them!

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I think what makes them so moreish is the melted butter that is added to the batter. Makes the waffles taste wonderful and crispy.  So simple to prepare but you will need a waffle maker.  Hope you enjoy them friends!

INGREDIENTS

1-3/4 cups plain flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 cups milk
1/4 cup butter melted
3 eggs
1/2 cup cheddar cheese, grated

METHOD

Mix all the dry ingredients in a large bowl

Add the melted butter, milk and eggs. Combine well. Throw in the cheese and give a final stir

Cook waffles in the waffle maker upon instructions

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Top with avocado, cherry tomatoes and more grated mature cheddar cheese!

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Cheese & Chives

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I woke up this morning to a husband who was preparing breakfast in the kitchen.  Having lots of chives that he has grown and takes pride of place in our herb garden on our window sill, he used them on these eggs he cooked.

A hint of onioness with the mature hit of cheddar cheese all over a delicious creamy and soft buttery yolk!  I could eat these eggs over and over.  Probably will as we have lots of chives to use up.

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Hope you’re all having a fantastic day!

INGREDIENTS

1 large egg
Handful of mature cheddar grated
Sprinkling of fresh chives
Olive oil

METHOD

Heat a little olive oil in a frying pan on a low heat.  Crack the egg with yolk in tact.  Cover and cook for a minute or so.  Depending how runny you want your egg

Top the egg with cheese and chives.  Cover again and cook until cheese has melted

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Serve on buttered whole wheat toast

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Protein Chapatis

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Ok…So these looks like normal chapatis?!  Soft fluffy Indian flatbreads. To a point they are and then I was sneaky and blitzed some cooked QUINOA in my NutriBullet! And blended to a pulse

Add it to the mix of flour a little sunflower and boiling hot water to firm a dough.  Cooked them on a flat griddle and voila protein filled quinoa hidden into our daily bread…

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Loving my NutriBullet!!!

Eggless Vegetable Fritters

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A gooey cheesy fritter without egg!.. Loaded with vegetables of your choice.  I preferred courgette, sweetcorn and spring onion.  You could use tomato to give it a bit more and some chili to jazz it up a bit!

Simply done…quickly eaten! Enjoy friends..Much love, D x

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INGREDIENTS

1 grated courgette
1 tin sweetcorn drained
100g mature cheddar cheese grated
1 spring onion sliced
Handful of chopped chives
4 tbsp plain flour
200ml milk
Paprika
Chilli powder
Salt
Oregano to taste
Olive oil

METHOD

Combine all ingredients except milk and flour, mix well into a large bowl

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Whisk the milk and flour. Slowly add this mixture to the large bowl

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Heat up a little olive oil in a non stick frying pan.  Place a heaped table spoon of fritter mixture into the pan and flatten to make a disk

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Gently flip over. Making sure both sides are golden brown

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Serve with a coriander chutney

Sweet Semolina Halwa Pudding

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I have always been wanting to make the dishes that my Mum made look so simple to make.  I would sit on the kitchen stool and watch in awe.  One sweet item I have always wanted to try is a warm sweet semolina dessert.  A halwa..little grains of semolina combined with flaked nuts and overall aromatic saffron undertones.

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I followed an amazing recipe by Dassana Amit @ http://www.vegrecipesofindia.com/saffron-halwa/.  I made half of the quantity stated and found when adding the milk there was plenty to go round.  A wonderful Indian semolina pudding…something a little different but I guarantee you’ll get hooked!

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