Spaghetti with Cod and Green Olives

This seems to be all we are eating lately, it is just so delicious and so easy. Buy a punnet of the reddest cherry tomatoes you can find. Pop them in a roasting tray, drizzle with Olive oil and balsamic vinegar and stick them in a hot oven until the skins are burst and they are soft.

Then mash them to a pulp. Saute a chopped onion in olive oil, with salt and pepper. Add pieces of raw cod and cook through. Break the fish with a wooden spoon and add the tomatoes. When they are bubbling, switch off the heat and stir through chopped basil and pitted green olives. Drizzle some more balsamic over the whole thing.

Serve with spaghetti and a nice glass of wine.


I made this...!

Birthday cake for Finn!


Beet THAT!

I'm intrigued by 'wrong' coloured foods! I love black spaghetti and I will always choose my ice cream by the colour, "I'll have the bright green one please!"...

The following is a great dinner party dish, the colour is very impressive and beetroot lovers will thank you for months!! Beetroot is the veg a la mode in this house, I've been using it ALOT, perhaps too much, Bill? It is delicious though so I'll throw a few more beetroot recipes your way before I abandon it!! 

Beetroot Risotto
You'll need
Olive oil
500gms risotto rice
1 large glass of red wine
1 pk of cooked beetroot in juice
1 clove of garlic, crushed
500mls chicken/vegetable stock
100gms grated parmesan
A knob of butter
100gms soft goats cheese
Handful of rocket
Chopped walnuts

Fry the rice with the garlic in oil until becoming translucent around the edges.  Add the wine and the juice from the beetroot.  Cook off the liquids and then add the stock, in dribs and drabs until the rice is cooked.  If the stock runs out use hot water. 

When the rice is cooked, chop the beetroot and add, stirring through to get as much dye on the rice as you can and then add the butter and parmesan.  Stir through.  Serve sprinkled with the rocket, walnuts and goats cheese.



A little movie for you!

If you fancy a good laugh, head over to The Twilight Spoof  - Mary and her two cousins Finn and Ru remade their favorite movie and it is a scream! 

We'd love to see them get lots of hits so do please pass the link on to anyone you know who loves Twilight!!

Enjoy it!! 


Summer Lovin...

We caught a glimpse of summer a few weekends ago... and it was wonderful, spirits picked up, traffic jams were full of smiling faces, brown arms dangling from windows - no matter where you were there was sun to enjoy!
We took ourselves to the beach and, on returning, wanted something quick, easy and summery to satisfy those hunger pangs.
Asparagus & Lemon Pasta

You'll need
1 lemon, squeezed and zested
500gms cooked pasta, Farfalle or Penne are best, I used Fusilli out of desperation!!
4 tbsp of virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove, crushed
100gms pancetta, optional
10 Asparagus tips

Heat the oil and add the garlic.    Add the pancetta and cook through. Add the chopped asparagus and stir until bright green.  Remove from heat, add lemon zest and juice and stir the pasta through.



Little Windows... Ten on ten...

My contribution to the Ten on Ten project....


Thai Fish Cakes!

These are easy to make and can be prepared in advance, then fried for a couple of minutes each side and served.

You'll need
  1. 150g cod or salmon fillet, skinned and deboned
  2. 100g raw shelled prawns
  3. 2 spring onions, chopped
  4. 1 tbsp Thai curry paste 
  5. 1/2 tsp grated fresh ginger
  6. 1 tsp fish sauce
  7. 1/2 tbsp light soy sauce
  8. Handful chopped fresh coriander

  9. Method
  10. Throw everything into your food processor and blend together to a rough mince.  Shape into patties, this mix should make between 4 and 6 smallish ones.  Fry in a bit of olive oil, until browned.  Mix a tbsp of soy sauce with the same of honey and pour over in the pan.  Serve with sweet chilli sauce.

I heart...

Marks & Spencer Strawberry and Vanilla Cupcakes...
Just delicious!  


Around the world...

I love taking photos of food, so I was happy to help when a friend called and said she was hoping I'd pop down and take some photos of a world food fair she had organised!  I was delighted!  
The fair took place in Microsoft, Sandyford, and was an amazing smorgasbord of cuisine from all around the globe.  Staff members were asked to bring a traditional dish from their home country and for a small cover charge, they could then try a little of each! 
What a great idea! The different colours, textures and smells from all over the world spread before me like a patchwork quilt made me glad I'd skipped breakfast!! 

My favorites were the Custard tarts from Portugal, and the Cabbage soup from Slovakia which I MUST have the recipe for immediatley!! 
My photos can not even tell half the story, it was such a wonderful fair and such an amazing idea,  hopefully a good chunk of money was raised for charity! 


OCD - Obsessive Cullen Disorder!

I know its been uber quiet on this blog lately, and well I feel I should explain.  I should 'fess up.

My name is Lisa and I'm a Twilight addict.

Every spare minute I have is spent reading the rest of the saga... and I haven't had time even to cook anything very exciting!

However I am on the last, and rather far fetched, last book, so things should be back to normal soon!

Well until November anyway... 


I want...

K, so the weather is easing up and we are starting to think about going camping.  Ladybird is still happy to hold us and we're not ones to waste opportunities! Anyhoo I've been surfing online to see what gadgets await! 
I love waffles, don't eat enough of them actually, there is nothing as pleasing as a waffle with clotted cream, jam and fresh strawberries (Yes Ciara and I am looking out for gluten free waffles so we can eat this together...!) all piled high with a steaming cup of tea and a fork in hand.

So I was looking for waffle recipes and then I spotted this!
A camping waffle iron! I must have one! Oh you know me - I love cooking anything the hard way so why not cook waffles over the fire, can you think of anything more hardy and outdoorsy? I'd be "mom/wife/camp neighbor" of the year! 

Marvellous! I'll let you know when I try it out!


Lasagne Primavera

I've baked this style of lasagne for a good few years after eating something similar in Italy, but I'd forgotten about it until lo and behold I was watching a digital food channel that shows Rachel Ray and she was baking it on air!! I felt cheated but then delighted, a family favorite reinstated, and ours is a little different from Rachels so its all good!

Lasagne PrimaveraYou'll need
A pk of ready to bake (is there any other kind?) lasagne sheets
4 tins of tomatoes
3 courgettes, grated
500gms ricotta, mixed with 1 egg and 80gms grated parmesan
400gms lamb mince
1 mozarella ball
2 cloves of garlic
Handful each of basil, mint and parsley.

Cook the lamb mince with the chopped onion until browned. Stir in 1 tin of tomatoes and leave to simmer until thickened. Add the fresh basil. Chop the mint and parsley and stir into the ricotta cheese.  In a separate pan, chop two cloves of garlic and stir fry in olive oil, adding the courgette, with salt and pepper after a few moments.  Stir in the hot oil until coated and remove from the heat.Pour some tomatoes from a tin to coat the bottom of the dish, then layer the lasagne, pasta, courgette, ricotta, pasta, meat, courgette, pasta and so on as you wish.
Top with a full tin of tomatoes and slices of mozarella.
Bake at 200c for a 40 minutes or until the cheese is golden and the dish is bubbling.
Wait ten to fifteen minutes before slicing.



The perfect end to a dinner party... An enormous pavlova will have your guests weak at the knees... Forget kiwi and lemony cream... You want sharp rasberries and vanilla creaminess dripping from forks....

My Pavlova
You'll need
6 Egg whites
400gms caster sugar
1.5 tsp white wine vinegar
1.5 tsp cornflour

Preheat your oven to 200c. Whisk the eggs into soft peaks, add the sugar, flour and vinegar and whisk again until shiny and with soft peaks again.  Line and dust (with icing sugar) a shallow roasting pan and plop your mix into it, allow it to make its own shape.

Pop into the oven, and immediatley turn the oven down to 150.  Bake the meringue for 1 hour or until it is nicely brown and cracking along the 'seams'.

When ready remove from the oven and allow to cool completely.  Lift the meringue onto your dish, and with the back of a spoon crack the surface, allowing it to collapse in on itself.  Fill the hollow with vanilla cream (use M&S Madagasgar vanilla cream if you can!) and top with raspberries... 



Are you Twilighting?

I robbed this wonderful picture from Ciara over at Milkmoon, to show you what my daughter has been up to for the last few weeks... Twilighting... 
And, it seems, so has everyone in the universe, it is everywhere isn't it?

So, I read it to see what the fuss was about.

I sat down yesterday, and over a couple of hours in a quiet room, and then another couple of hours in bed, I read the whole thing through.  I haven't done that since I was a teenager myself!
Holes in the plot aside (and there are many!) it was one of those stories that drags you kicking and screaming (with joy) back to your teen years, when books like this encouraged day dreams about the shopkeepers son, or that boy who catches the bus at the same time you do every day... At Marys age I would routinely fall in love with boys on the bus and while away the days dreaming of all the possibilities to come.  

This book reminded me of those daydreams, with all its inconsistencies, and it was probably the most romantic and sincere thing I have read in years... I threw my irritations at Meyer (who I think probably got a bit lost in the romance herself) away and jumped in head first... 
If you haven't read it - Do! True, it is a book aimed at 12-15 year olds, and it is FULL of holes (Which Meyer has attempted to resolve with Midnight Sun), it is a bit lazy, but... BUT... You will adore it... It will, he will, haunt you (You might even find yourself googling 'Edward Cullen' late at night!)!  Just let go of any adult expectations, and go with it...

Happy Reading!


I want...

This is the i-bride "Liu Tray" which caught my eye on my new favorite site Bohemia this morning... Isn't it edible! I love it, and am now plotting ways in which it can be mine (insert wild laughter here)...

You can see this adorable tray and other lovelies here...!

I heart...

Franks Red Hot Sauce!!! My American readers will scoff at this post, but I have only just discovered that one CAN make restaurant style Buffalo wings at home, with very little effort and they turn out JUST AS GOOD!!! 

No more trips to Tribeca for me!!

American Buffalo Wings
You'll need

8 tbsp Franks Hot Sauce (Available in Tesco!)
8 tbsp Butter
1.5 tsp White vinegar
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/8 tsp garlic salt
1/2 tsp worcestershire sauce
Pinch of Salt


Mix all the ingredients in a saucepan,and heat until the butter has melted.  Leave to cool.

Sprinkle the chicken wings with Maldon table salt and place into a really hot oven, cook until the skin is crispy and bubbling.  Throw the wings in on top of the sauce and coat.

Serve with Blue cheese sauce (1 part mayo to 1 part sour cream, crumble chopped blue cheese and spring onion into the dip) and celery sticks!

Happy Easter!

This has been my second Easter in blog land, and again we roasted a lovely Leg of Lamb and had family over to enjoy the day! It was such a pleasure to entertain in my new lovely kitchen! 

I started the dinner off with a Pea and Mint Soup, which went down well, and was lovely and refreshing.  Then served the lamb with rosemary potatoes and wilted greens... I have to admit I was so busy eating it all I barely took a picture!!

The evening rounded off nicely with a raucous game of Cranium (in which there was a few serious accusations of unsportsmanlike behaviour!) and our family favorite 'Incognito'! 

Happy Easter!

Pea and Mint Soup
You'll need
1 tbsp olive oil
1 clove of garlic, smashed
1 small bag of frozen garden peas (around 500gms)
500mls of vegetable stock
A handful of fresh mint leaves
Some cream to garnish

Lightly fry the garlic in the oil, add the peas and the stock and simmer over a medium heat for 20 minutes.  Add the mint.  Blend until smooth.  Serve hot with a swirl of cream.

Little Windows...

From the lovely seaside town of Beaumaris, Wales.