trying new things: pasta with dried chillies, tomatoes and feta

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New year is all about trying new things, and what better way to do that than by experimenting in the kitchen. I’ve never been one for a lot of spice as I was brought up without it, but, slowly but surely, I’m learning that a little bit of heat can add an enticing kick to otherwise less-than-inspiring dishes – without blowing your mouth off!

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black bean brownies

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I can’t believe I haven’t posted in nearly 2 months, but I think I can justify it because I had exams and… I’ve moved to Paris! As part of my university degree I have to spend the third year abroad to “immerse” myself in the “culture” (does a swim in the local pool count?!). Continue reading

mozzarella and pepper stuffed breaded chicken with herby tomato sauce

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The name may be a bit of a mouthful, but trust me you’ll want a good forkful of this!

If you’ve liked ‘Tasty’ on Facebook and are anything like me, you’ll watch a few of their videos, think they look pretty good and convince yourself to try them, but then just never get round to doing it. Although this recipe isn’t one theirs, they’ve been posting several chicken-stuffed recipes lately, and I thought it was time for me to try something a bit different.  Continue reading

liebster award!

Libester award

Even though I’ve had my blog for a good few months now, I still feel like quite a newbie to all this, perhaps documented by the fact that one of my nominations for this award ended up in my spam filter a while ago and I was none the wiser until today! (Must check spam more often.) In fact, I was lucky enough to receive two nominations for the Liebster Award, by The Picky Gourmet and Jenna’s Universal Advice so I would like to say a big thank you to both of you 🙂  Continue reading

delicious banana and sultana loaf (gluten free)

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I’m not really one to go in for the whole gluten-free thing because I think there’s nothing wrong with eating pasta and bread if you want, especially the wholewheat variety which I tend to opt for. However, due to feeling a little stuffed from Easter, and receiving a free sample of a few of Hemsley + Hemsley’s recipes (really good btw!), I thought it would be fun to try something different. Their recipe calls for bananas, but I decided to add sultanas for sweetness and sprinkle some sesame seeds on top for a crunchy and protein-rich topping.  Continue reading

salted caramel & chocolate hot cross buns

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I saw Mary Berry’s Easter television programme and she made making hot cross buns look wonderfully simple (I should know by now that she makes everything look easy) so I, perhaps foolishly, thought I’d give them a go myself. They are very time-consuming, but actually surprisingly rewarding. In fact, you can spend most of the time with your feet up because they have to prove for a total of nearly 2.5 hours, during which time there is nothing you can or should be doing except recovering from all that kneading. I really am no bread expert, but I reckon if you knead for a solid 10 minutes you can’t go too wrong. The recipe comes from: http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/mary_berrys_hot_cross_65003, although I have made some slight adjustments as I like to add my own twist on things, so you’ll see I’ve introduced a salted caramel and chocolate variety into half the batch, alongside the traditional fruit.

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chicken fajita pasta bake

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I don’t know about you but recently I’ve been super busy with essays, exams and preparation for my year abroad. I love cooking and find it a great way to destress but sometimes there just aren’t enough hours in a day to cook an elaborate meal and write a 2000 word essay (and doing them at the same time could get a little messy!). So I’ve had some fun coming up with some really tasty and quick meals, and this cheesy pasta with (slightly) spicy chicken really hits the spot after a long day of working/revising/doing absolutely anything at all 🙂  Continue reading