Ja-maica your pancakes a little more special this week with @appletonrumuk #pancakeday #recipe

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Yes that’s right it really is Pancake Day tomorrow. We’ve been rattling our brains to find out how best to make our pancakes a little different this year and nothing says ‘step away from the children’ and indulge yourself like a little bit of boozy pancake offerings!

Ynxj4gxfscYmk02APD3gwGekjCmI_l6BzRris7cccqMSo forget Blue Peter, lets get down to business with an old (but new to us) recipe from the world famous Appleton Estate rum makers, that dates back to 1749!

And to make it a little more fun, even the recipes look like they’ve come from the olden days – well, the 1980’s at least! (We can thank the PR’s for that!)

Enjoy, but if the kids are going mad from the sugar and lemon toppings, then stay safe in the knowledge that these ones are all for yourself and you deserve it!

Happy Pancake Day Snoochers!

 

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Forget your Christmas Cooking disasters 2014 is a new year to cook with @smeguk #cooking #recipe #food

 

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So did you to cook the turkey to perfection this year? or did you get ribbed by your family around the table for that slightly over smoked bird? Oh well, either way 2014 is a new year with new goals in work, life and well…cooking! And in terms of the latter, award winning appliance manufacturer Smeg (yes, the one with the uber cook refrigerators everyone wished they had) you can create a new, exciting dish a professional chef would be proud of, from succulent roast pork to melt-in-the-mouth extra lemony sponge cake all because of its brand new recipe card collection? 

 Recipe Cards?? Old School….

Yep, old school style, modern means, via Smegs website,  you can concoct nine delicious, classic British recipes which have been cleverly designed by a qualified home economist to help you produce the tastiest dishes using Smeg’s top-of-the-range, built-in or freestanding cooking appliances (or of course, your own!). SFP390X

The last recipe from this collection, Rotisserie sweet chilli chicken, has just been completed and is now available online. Simply go to www.smeguk.com now where you can download each recipe card and 26 other online recipes from around the globe, which range from party food and starters to sweets and desserts.

 But I just want to start cooking right now…

Oh, ok then, well here’s the recipe just for you!! x

 

Rotisserie sweet chilli chicken

Rotisserie chicken

SERVES 4

Ingredients:

1.6kg whole fresh chicken, finely grated zest 1 lime, 2 tsp dried chilli flakes,1 tbsp sunflower oil

2 tbsp runny honey, flaked sea salt, freshly ground black pepper

Method:

1. Preheat the oven to 180C on the Rotisserie Grill setting. Place a baking tray lined with foil on the bottom shelf of the oven. This will collect any juices that drip from the chicken.

2. Mix the lime zest with the chilli flakes, a good pinch of salt and plenty of freshly ground black pepper. Stir in the oil and honey until combined.

3. Place the chicken on a board. Do not remove the string holding the chicken together. Carefully thread the rotisserie rod down through the centre of the chicken.

4. Skewer each end with the clip forks and secure by tightening the screw on each fork. Brush the chilli mixture all over the skin of the chicken until it is evenly coated.

5. Place the rotisserie rod securely on to the rotisserie support according to your oven manual. Spit roast the chicken with the oven door closed for 1 ¼ hours or until the skin is deep golden brown and the chicken is thoroughly cooked. The juices should run clear.

6. Carefully remove the chicken from the oven and transfer to a board. Remember, it will be extremely hot and juices could splash. Loosely cover the chicken with foil and leave to rest for 10 minutes. Remove the rotisserie rod and carve the chicken to serve.

Rotisserie works in combination with the grill element whilst constantly turning the food

Dish up dreamy desserts this Xmas with @BaileysOriginal Christmas Creams #baileyschristmascreams #food #drink #christmas

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Ever heard of the phrase “cant cook, won’t cook?” Yes, well it very much applies to us, the idea of a takeaway as the far easier option always comes to mind at around the 7pm timeslot, and the thought of hosting a group for dinner fills us with fear…until now.

With a little help from the latest Baileys Christmas Cream collection, this week we were taken on a culinary cuisine cruise around Les Atelier Des Chefs in London, to get ready for the Christmas season in style, and iron out any doubts we may have had about our cooking (or at least baking) abilities.Screen Shot 2013-12-05 at 18.09.18

Luckily for us, in just a couple of hours, what we found, is that actually cooking is not only hugely fun and rewarding, but it also can be incredibly simple and yet produce results that even Mary Berry would be proud of. Oh and the fact that all the food we made had Bailey’s in it REALLY helps!

So where did this culinary cruise start?

Well as any good Christmas party host knows, it started with a nice glass of Prosecco… just to ease us into it of course! Now we would also recommend a quick pit stop before you get started, alongside a bowl of Baileys Original Sauce (£2.35 300ml) which you dip some yummy strawberry’s and marshmallows into as a pre dessert nibble!

Then with our advice, you skip the main meal and head straight for dessert!!!

Dessert you say…already?

Screen Shot 2013-12-05 at 18.12.45Well isn’t this splendid, who said Christmas isn’t about indulging yourself entirely. With the help of a fantastic Food Innovator called Janey Greene, (who taught us everything we needed to know on the day) Baileys has mustered up some fabulous dessert treats that have convinced us that we could pose as master chefs in no time at all!

All you literally need is a little bit of Baileys very own Christmas Cream selection and you will have a unique recipe or two to impress your friends with in no time

Here’s what we made on the day – oh and a little look at us in action….

Baileys Creamy Custard Fruit Brulee – by Janey Green

Apples and Dates infused with Tangerine and Basil, topped with Baileys Cream Vanilla Custard and finished with a Brulee toppingScreen Shot 2013-12-05 at 18.17.03

Baileys Cream with Chilli Chocolate and Sour Cherry

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For these recipes, make sure you visit Janey’s wonderful blog A Slice of Slim.

 It really is that simple!

We cant express enough how easy these recipes were to make, and just how unique they all taste with a yummy Bailey’s twist. Even if its not your immediate top tipple, the addition of this to any dessert at Christmas is really worth it.

It’s guaranteed to make you fall in love with puddings all over again! Here’s some ideas for you…

Try classic Baileys Original Irish Cream with gooey chocolate cakes and tortes, while Baileys with a hint of Crème Caramel is the perfect accompaniment to warm sticky toffee puddings or fresh fruit crumbles and tarts. You can even use it to add a little extra luxury to recipes that traditionally use chilled cream, such as trifles or tiramisu.

The list is endless, and the taste is priceless! So what are you waiting for, its time to get in the kitchen, pretend you’re Nigella (in better times) and become the hostest with the mostest this Christmas! Screen Shot 2013-12-05 at 22.30.06

Get the party started and then pick up your hangover with the @PiccadillyIns and @alibidrink Christmas cocktails! #drink #party

Screen Shot 2013-11-15 at 13.13.00The Christmas party season is gearing up, and we have just the two cocktails that will get you started AND pick you up when you need rescuing the morning after!

TO GET THE PARTY STARTED! 

Launching today via the Piccadilly Institute comes a fun Christmas cocktail called THE AVALANCHE!  Not your average xmas cocktail it’s a banana and amaretto combination that will set your festive taste buds alive and the bit that we love best is that looks exactly like an avalanche. Accompanied with a Lego man skier, all we can say is Christmas has come early!Avalanche

Want to learn how to make it yourself? Of course you do, then you can impress all your mates with some pre-party festive cheer! Here’s the recipe!   

Ingredients:

12.5ml Ketel One

12.5ml Crème de banana

12.5ml Amaretto

12.5ml White cacao

Top with milk

Recipes:

Prep glass with crushed ice; mix all ingredients together in a shaker and pour over. Top with extra crushed ice and garnish with crushed amaretto biscuit and place Lego skier delicately on top of the avalanche.

TO RESCUE YOU THE NEXT DAY! 

FORGET THE BLOODY MARY! THIS IS THE ONLY DRINK YOU’LL NEED….

THE BLOODY ALIBI! 

This cocktail packs the same punch as its mother Mary, but with 19 vitamins, minerals and natural herbal extracts in one can of Alibi, it’s a lot more nutritious and better tasting than Dot Cotton’s favourite fruit juice. Screen Shot 2013-11-15 at 12.23.19

Ingredients:

½ can Alibi Pomegranate

40ml vodka

20ml fresh lemon juice

2 dashes Worcestershire sauce

2 dashes Tabasco sauce

1 pinch pink Himalayan salt

1 pinch black pepper

Recipe: 

Add all ingredients, except Alibi, to a cocktail shaker filled with cubed ice. Shake hard and strain into the glass. Top with Alibi Pomegranate and garnish with a cherry tomato.

TA-DAH! There you have it, all you will need for the perfect party starter and pick me up the morning after! So the countdown to Christmas has really begun, dust off that LBD, shine those shoes and get celebrating!

Fancy a piece of this pie? Its all for a VERY good cause! @pieminister #popup #charity

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Have you ever tasted Pieminister’s legendary range of pies? Served with delicious buttery mash, peas and gravy? Ooh well you’re missing out, but not for long! If you pop to Camden up until the 17th November, you can try these amazing treats and give a little back in the meantime!

Located opposite London’s famous Stables Market in Camden, the fully licensed Cattle Market (21-22 Chalk Farm Road, London, NW1 8AG) is open from 10am to 11pm. The Pieminister Pop Up Pie Shop  – The Cattle Market – will be kick starting 30 farms in Africa (with your help) and get them to their fund raising target. To do this the amazing team will be giving pies for free, in return for donations to the Cattle Drive fund! Simples! Screen Shot 2013-10-29 at 10.51.03

Its not just all about food though…a well-stocked bar will be serving up some great pie accompaniments including West Country ciders and craft beers from Camden Town Brewery and the Bristol Beer Factory, as well as Bristol’s own 6 O’clock Gin.

Tell me more about the charity work…

Every penny raised from food sales will go directly into the Cattle Drive fund for African development charity Send a Cow.   Over the next year, Pieminister’s £40,000 fundraising target will fund the construction and stocking of 30 farms so that around 224 people in Uganda, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Burundi, Zambia and Lesotho will be trained to become farmers, leaving poverty and hunger behind for good.

Based in Bath, Send a Cow has been working in Africa for 25 years and in that time transformed over a million lives.

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What? There’s more?! 

The Cattle Market is just one element of Pieminister’s Cattle Drive:

  • Pieminister will donate 10p from every pie sold through retailers including Waitrose, Sainsbury’s, Ocado, Budgens and Wholefoods towards its Cattle Drive.  Pie fans will be rewarded with a decorative coloured felt cow with every pie they buy.
  • A series of one-off Cattle Drive nights will be held at selected Pieminister restaurants nationwide, where customers can enjoy a pie feast for free in return for donations.
  • Pieminister’s retro pie-scream van will embark on a week-long Cattle Drive from Send a Cow’s HQ in Bath to the pop-up pie shop in Camden, giving away free pies en route, in return for donations.
  • Participating pubs with a Pieminister pie menu can contribute towards the Cattle Drive’s fundraising target by featuring Pieminister’s ‘Prize Cow Draw’. For a small donation, pub-goers can enter the draw to win a year’s supply of Pieminister pies.
  • Entrants will also be invited to draw a ‘Prize Cow’ for more chances to win exciting prizes.  The best or funniest cows will be displayed on Pieminister’s Facebook page, so fans vote for their favourite ‘Prize Cows’.    This competition will also run at Pieminister restaurants.
  • Businesses across the UK can also get involved by participating in Pieminister’s ‘Cattle Auction’, to bid for pies; Pieminister will provide the pies for free so staff can bid for their favourites and raise money.  A prize will be awarded to the office which raises the most amount of money for the Cattle Drive.

Find out more and get involved visit www.pieminister.co.uk/cattledrive.  And follow the herd on twitter or facebook or become a V.I.Pie.

Remember your awkward teenage Summer with @Thewaywayback #filmreview #film

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If you love Sam Rockwell as much as we do, then you’ll be queuing up to watch him in this quirky Summer coming of age flick which hits cinemas today.

The film follows shy 14-year-old Duncan as he goes on summer vacation with his mother, her overbearing boyfriend, and her boyfriend’s daughter. Having a rough time fitting in, Duncan finds an unexpected friend in Owen, manager of the Water Wizz water park.

Nothing overly dramatic happens in this film, it’s just more of a reminiscent and nostalgic journey into all of our uncomfortable adolescent selves where we’re discovering new things, good and bad, meeting new people and most importantly having that very awkward, lonely teenage Summer.

The film boasts a great cast and starts very well. We see a new Steve Carell, no longer a slap-stick comic character, this time a straight talking stepdad which any teenager would find offensive and domineering. Toni Colette is the ‘glass half full and things could be worse so I’ll put up with it’ mother of Duncan and Sam Rockwell is the saving grace coolest guy in town who runs (rather haphazardly) the Water Wizz water park.Screen Shot 2013-08-28 at 08.35.07

These are only half the key characters in the film, but immediately you see a pattern forming. These characters are very clearly stock and presented in an almost formulaic approach to what you would hope would make a good/poignant/funny film. In addition you have the constantly drunk neighbour – who provides a monologue of comic proportions as the family arrive at their Summer home; her overly confident sharp talking tween son, additional neighbours who turn Carell and Colette’s characters into relatable drunken parental figures around the dinner table and finally there’s the shy inquisitive beautiful girl who doesn’t conform to her bimbo girlfriends and inevitably becomes the object of Duncan’s affections.Screen Shot 2013-08-28 at 08.34.40

These all sound like the recipe for a classic coming of age tale, and if they had all come together perfectly The Way, Way Back would have been one of those must watch films, but something just doesn’t quite gel together. You will probably be willing this film to be much more enchanting than it actually is and will most likely find sanctuary like Duncan, at the Water Wizz water park where Sam Rockwell dominates. His effortlessness and ease provides a distinct contrast to the rest of the cast who feel slightly more contrived, which some may argue is a testament to his talent as an actor.

But by no means is this film unwatchable, there are some brilliant moments of comedy, and over arching reminders of many of our teenage experiences plus some brilliant performances across the board in their own rights. It’s hard to put a finger on what exactly doesn’t work, but you certainly do come away trying to work out what could just make it that little bit better

3 Stars

The Way, Way Back is out on general release from today.

 

 

 

 

Milkshaken not stirred? @Prezzybox and @zokuHQ goes all Bond! #kitchen #gadget #food

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We might be preparing for yet another heatwave, but you can cool down in style as Prezzybox shows us how! So put away the Martini’s and get out the milk as we prepare for The Zoku Slushy and Milkshake Maker!!!

If Bond made a smoothie he would definitely use Zoku’s Slushy and Milkshake Maker. Sharp, smooth and always on the money, you are only seven minutes away from your perfect iced drink with this sleek, purple device. Freeze the core and then stir in your favourite tipple for the perfect crunch in a heat-wave.

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Features:

·       Durable, easily cleaned purple outer sleeve that insulates the frozen core and keeps the outer layer at a level temperature.

·       Long, trendy spoon designed for optimal manoeuvrability and grip

·       Huge 9 Ounce capacity

·        Recipe ideas and instructions included.

 Screen Shot 2013-07-31 at 08.29.53The Zoku Slushy and Milkshake Maker won’t shake your wallet either, selling for just £19.95 at www.prezzybox.com

Have more fun in your kitchen this Summer… go on, you deserve it!!!