Veggie Haggis & Apple Bedfordshire Clangers

Veggie haggis & apple Bedfordshire clangers cut into to how the savoury and sweet fillings

Bedfordshire Clangers

Have you heard of them ? 

No? I'd never heard of them before last week. I've been following the Great British Bake Off  (did you see my roast vegetable, pasta and cream cheese pizza for Italian week and my dark chocolate magic pudding for pudding week?) and they tie in with this week's theme.

At the end of each week the next week's challenge is previewed. This week the theme is forgotten bakes or shall we say old fashioned bakes. like these Bedfordshire clangers.

Veggie haggis & apple Bedfordshire clangers, a near forgotten pastry farm workers would take into the field for lunch/ Main course and dessert in one pastry.

What are Bedfordshire Clangers?

Bedfordshire clangers are a pastry from the English county Bedfordshire and they date back to the early 19th century. They are a double ended pastry that encompasses both a savoury main course and a dessert.

They were made for farm labourers. The suet pastry was steamed and was just a hard casing to keep their lunch contained and would protect the filling from their dirty hands. The author H.E. Bates described the clanger as "Hard as a hog's back, harder 'n prison bread".

As time went by these were baked instead of steamed and the pastry was eaten too. Until today when they resemble fat flaky pastries with that savoury filling at one end and sweet at the other.

Bedfordshire clangers are still baked in a wee bakery in Bedford called Gunns Bakery, where you can find clangers for meat eaters and vegetarians in a range of flavours.

Veggie Haggis & Apple Bedfordshire Clangers served with mango chutney for the savoury end.

Vegan Shortcrust Pastry

I decided to adapt these clangers and make them vegan.  I made a flaky shortcrust pastry using Trex vegetable fat.

I know you are speechless that I made my own pastry aren't you? As you know I pretty much always use ready made pastry, but this pastry is quick and easy. It only takes 15 to 20 minutes and that includes chilling time. A fabulous pastry!

A box of TREX vegetable fat

Trex in Pastry

I used Trex to make my pastry super light and flaky. Since I started using Trex so many people have told me how good it is in pastry and that it makes it super light and flaky. So I had to try making my own this time around.

They were right, I was really impressed and it doesn't hurt that it's lower in saturated fat than butter (you can use 20% less, they have a little calculator to work it out on the Trex website) and dairy free.

Veggie Haggis & Apple Bedfordshire Clangers on greaseproof paper

Clanger Filling

I filled three quarters of my clangers with vegetarian haggis and mustard. I broke up the haggis in a bowl and added extra spices to give it a bit more oomph. I spread one end with mustard and topped with the haggis, then spread the other end with apricot jam and topped it with lightly cooked apple. They were, really really good! I urge you to try them.

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Veggie Haggis & Apple Bedfordshire Clangers
Veggie Haggis & Apple Bedfordshire Clangers
A forgotten bake from Bedfordshire called the Bedfordshire Clanger. It's a flaky pastry bake that looks like a fat sausage roll. Once end contains a savoury filling and the other a sweet filling, so main course and dessert in one pastry. This clanger is vegan and filled with a veggie haggis and mustard at one end and apricot jam and apples at the other.

  • 225g plain flour
  • a generous pinch of salt
  • 85g Trex vegetable fat
  • 4-5 tbsp cold water
  • 454g vegetarian haggis
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • a good grinding of black pepper
  • 4 heaped tsp wholegrain mustard
  • 2 Granny Smith or other crisp green apples, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp caster sugar
  • 4 tsp apricot jam
  • 1 tbsp dairy free spread, melted


1. Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C /gas 5. 2. Sieve the flour into a large mixing bowl, add the salt and blobs of the Trex. Yes that is a technical term. 3. Use your fingertips to rub together the flour and Trex until it resembles breadcrumbs.4. Pour in 4 tbsp of chilled water and cut through it with a knife until it starts to come together. Add another tbsp water if you think it needs it, then bring it together with your hands. Don't knead it or you will make it tough. Wrap it in clingfilm and pop it in the fridge while you prepare the fillings.5. Cook your apples in a small pan with the sugar for a few minutes until they have started to soften.6. Empty the haggis into a clean bowl and break it up with a knife, add the spices and pepper and mix through. 7. Take your pastry out of the fridge and divide it into four. Shape piece of pastry into a sausage shape then roll into a long fat rectangle. Cut a strip of pastry from the end and make a wee divider wall with it &frac3/4 ways up your pastry. Spread the centre of the long section with mustard and the smaller section with jam (at either side of the divide). Don't take it to the edges, leave a border. Top the mustard with the haggis and the jam with the apple, not too much though. You need to be able to wrap the pastry around the filling.8. Wet the edges of the pastry with water then roll the pastry over the filling and keep rolling until you have a sausage roll shape. Place the fold underneath. 9. Pierce the pastry with the tip of the knife to let the steam out and make a little mark or pastry shape to show where the sweet end is. I made little hearts.10. Place the clangers on a floured baking tray and brush with melted dairy free spread. 11. Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden and crisp. 12. Enjoy!


Total time:

Yield:  Makes 4 large clangers

Follow the conversation with #trex #trexbaking and #GBBO.

Disclosure: I created this recipe for Trex. I was not required to write a positive review and any of the opinions expressed are my own.

Vegan Roast Vegetable, Pesto and Cream Cheese Pizza Recipe

I usually make my own pizza dough when I'm making a pizza from scratch, but I noticed my local supermarket have a fresh ready rolled pizza dough in their chilled section beside the pastry and decided to give it a go. 

Now I'm not saying I only ever make pizza from scratch, do any of us? 

Maybe if I was a stay at home mum. Nope, probably not even then. Each time I make pizza dough I think I should always make it fresh, but then reality kicks in.

I mostly buy chilled or frozen pizza for quick midweek meals and just pile them high with extra vegetables before cooking them and actually they are pretty good. Not quite as good as this freshly roasted vegetable, pesto and cream cheese pizza, but pretty good for a quick meal.


Aubergine and Onion Masala (a vegan eggplant crock-pot curry recipe)

Aubergine and Onion Masala (a vegan eggplant crock-pot curry recipe)

I don't make many curries. Well actually that's not true, I make dal nearly every week, but I don't often make any other curries or Indian side dishes. We used to eat a lot more Indian food, but Cooper isn't keen (although he loves dal) and Graham never seems to be in the mood for curry. Today I made this Aubergine and Onion Masala and it must have been the smell as Graham was tempted by it and thought it tasted great. Cooper had a snack before heading out to Boys Brigade so he hasn't tried it yet, but I have some dal at the ready just in case.

You can't win them all.


Rich Mushroom and Lentil Ragu Recipe

Rich Mushroom and Lentil Ragu Recipe

I told you this was pasta week. 

Oh did you miss my last post? I realised I was posting three pasta recipes this week. A roasted vegetable pea pasta bake, a creamy spinach and basil pasta and this rich ragu which I served with tagliatelle.

Don't worry we have eaten other meals in between. We haven't just lived on pasta this week. We've had carrot, lentil and spinach soup, vegetable packed pizza and an aubergine dish with potatoes and asparagus. One night it all went to pot and we gave up and ate chips (fries my American friends) from the chip shop with quickly heated baked beans. Yes, even food bloggers have nights like that.


Creamy Spinach and Basil Penne Recipe

Creamy Spinach and Basil Penne Recipe

It's pasta week!

Well actually that's not true, but it's going to feel like pasta week because this is my second pasta of the week and I still have another one planned. My first pasta dish this week was roasted vegetable pea pasta bake, but today I wanted something creamy. I wanted a creamy sauce but one that would be quick and easy too. Well you know how I am.

This time you may see a wee bit of orange shining throw the sauce. That's the colour of the pasta. For tonight's meal I used Napolina's Red Lentil Penne which like the green pea pasta is also gluten free.


Roasted Vegetable Pea Pasta Bake - gluten-free & vegan

Roasted Vegetable Pea Pasta Bake - gluten-free & vegan

I love a good pasta bake, but this isn't like most of my pasta bakes. They're usually really rich with a thick sauce, but this one is lighter. It's more about the roast vegetables with just a hint of light tomato sauce. I also wanted the flavour of the pasta to shine through. Why? Because it's Green Pea Pasta.

Green pea pasta, I hear you say!

Why yes, green pea pasta.


Dark Chocolate Magic Pudding (a self-saucing vegan dessert recipe)

Dark Chocolate Magic Pudding (a self-saucing vegan dessert recipe)

I've had self-saucing pudding at the back of my mind for years now. I always look them and think I have to make one of these magic puddings, but never get around to making one. The time has come! Trex has challenged me to bake to the theme of the bakes on The Great British Bake Off and this week is pudding week. There was no information beyond it being pudding week, so I took that as fate and just the nudge I needed to make a dark chocolate magic pudding.
Dark Chocolate Magic Pudding (a self-saucing vegan dessert recipe)


Meat Free Mondays (week beginning 25 September 2017)

Happy Monday! 

How was the start to your week? I was off today and busy developing a dark chocolate magic pudding. All I can say is it's divine and coming soon, so watch this space. The last week has been a busy one for me, even though I had a couple of days off work. At the weekend we travelled down to the Scottish Borders and stayed in the Tinto Hotel. It was great to get away for a couple of days. To get out and explore, away from our phones and computers, just lots of fresh air and fun. 

It's Monday again, so I'm planning my meals for the week ahead and that's when Meat Free Mondays come in handy. Each week there are so many new tasty recipes to try. If you're veggie or trying to eat veggie once a week or more it's worth tuning in every Monday.

*update at end of post*


Tortellini Minestrone Soup

Tortellini Minestrone Soup

It's soup time of year. The nights are drawing in and it's definitely getting colder. I've been fighting the temptation to put the heating on when it's only September, but I've had to give in a couple of times and put it on for a wee while, just to take the edge of the chill. So here we have a big pot of Tortellini Minestrone Soup to combat the cold nights and for a spot of comfort.

This is very similar to a simple minestrone I make, but this time I added tortellini for a more substantial meal rather than usual baby pasta or broken spaghetti strands I often add.
Tortellini Minestrone Recipe using #essentialWaitrose ingredients @waitrose


Easy Cheesy Vegetable Potato Cakes

Easy Cheesy Vegetable Potato Cakes

These cheesy vegetable potato cakes were our dinner for tonight. I always cook simple food and share easy recipes, but these are definitely made with Cooper in mind. They are real nursery food or should I say comfort food? 

Not only are these potato cakes comfort food, but they're a sneaky way of getting more vegetables into Cooper's day. If you have children or a husband like mine who is reluctant to eat vegetables you will appreciate what I'm talking about.
Easy Cheesy Vegetable Potato Cakes with @waitrose #essentialWaitrose #ad


Meat Free Mondays (week beginning 18 September 2017)

tomatoes and basil

Happy Monday my friends.

It's come around again hasn't it? It must be a sign of getting older that the week whizzes by, no make that the year!

I don't have any family tales to share with you this week. It was a pretty busy but average week. Cooper stayed with his grandparents at the weekend and I was working on Saturday. I did go out to the pub after work with friends for some dinner and a few drinks before heading home to watch a couple of DVDs (Graham was in Edinburgh at a gig so I was home alone). La La Land was one of the DVD's I rented and I knew within the first couple of minutes I was going to hate it. I do enjoy musicals, but this one just annoyed me. It was very beautiful and cinematic, but I couldn't stand any of the characters. Anyway enough of that, let's do some meal planning.


Aubergine, Sweet Potato and Metis Tagine

Aubergine, Sweet Potato and Metis Tagine

Let's get fruity!

My tagine I mean, no funny business. Aubergine, sweet potato and Metis® are the base of this spiced Moroccan stew, which is served on a base of fluffy couscous.

A feast for a king or at least an everyday mum, dad and small boy. And talking about that small boy. He was hanging about while I took photos desperate to get stuck in. He loved it! This is a day to remember. He didn't flinch when I said it had aubergine in it and he didn't poke at it suspiciously as he often does when I present him with a new dish. He ate it and said it was yummy! He ate it all!

*dances round the room whooping*


Meat Free Monday - 11 September 2017

Happy Monday!

How are you? Have you had a good week? Monday rolls round quickly doesn't it?

I'm not sure I have much to share with you this week. How about a Cooper update? His class are studying James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl, so he is doing lots of peach related activities. His teacher misguidedly asked the children to draw a face on a peach and look after it. Unfortunately she seems to have forgotten how young children can get attached to things. Cooper gave it a name and personality and as it started to get squishy and past it's best he got really upset. Honestly you couldn't make this stuff up. Tears over a peach, or his wee friend Peachy as he named it. Sigh!

Apart from that we didn't get up to much. We had a lovely day in St Andrews on Saturday, well it would have been a more fun if we had realised it was the weekend when the students and their parents arrive. It was mobbed, still we had fun at the park in the morning and pizza before we headed home.

Enough of all that. It's time to think about the week ahead and plan some meals. So without further ado I give you this week's Meat Free Mondays and another seven gorgeous recipes for you to try.


Vegan Sausage, Red Pepper and Brown Rice Casserole Recipe

Vegan Sausage, Red Pepper and Brown Rice Casserole Recipe

I'm drooling just thinking about this casserole and how good it was. I was planning on serving it with veg, but we ended up just serving it with crusty bread to mop up the juices. It was delicious and really filling. I'm looking forward to trying this again very soon.

I was inspired to make this rice dish after a trip to Milan and a visit to Riso Gallo, the rice people. Riso Gallo are a family name in Italy, with a reputation for superior quality rice. They are the brand that chefs and anyone who really enjoys cooking look for. They're famous for their risotto rice, but they actually have a huge range of products including mixed grain products such as spelt, barley and quinoa. They also sell a pronto range for quick midweek meals. A good selection of their range is available from Ocado. Other supermarkets stock their products, but you won't find such a big range. Try your favourite online supermarket, type Gallo into the search box and add some to your basket to try.


Meat Free Mondays #108

olive oil

Happy Monday!

How has your week been? Mine has been a bit sucky as Graham was made redundant, so he's busy looking for a new job, but there's nothing great to apply for at the moment. We're trying to stay positive. I'm sure it will all work out. You may have noticed I now have ads on my blog after 10 years ad-free and you can probably guess why. So do stick with me. I'll be posting lots of recipe inspiration on Mondays and recipes during the week as usual.

Now we've got that out of the way lets drool over some new veggie recipes. I hope you get lots of inspiration this week.


Back to School Gooey Chocolate Cake

Back to School Gooey Chocolate Cake

We have a tradition in our house. I started it when Cooper started school and we continue on with it each year. On Cooper's first day back at school we make chocolate cake together. Not not in the morning! You're having a laugh. Do you know how mad the first day of school is?

Of course English schools break up later and the children are starting back next week, so I'm hoping when I share Cooper's Gooey Chocolate Cake it might start a tradition in another home.

Last year we walked into town after school and spent way too long in Waterstones book shop, in the cafe and then looking at books so we didn't have time to make chocolate cake. We made Malteser Fudge Brownies instead and boy were they yummy, but more importantly they were quick. This year we came home so we have plenty of time for a full sized chocolate creation.


Falafel and Apple Salad Sandwich Recipe

A delicious vegan sandwich. Sweet crunchy apple with lightly spiced falafel, creamy hummus and fresh salad on soft brown bread with a sweet bit of heat from some mango chutney. Plus 15 family sandwich ideas.

I don't share many sandwich recipes, but I seem to make plenty of them and I'm always looking for new ideas, so I figured you might enjoy some new sandwich recipes too.

I often add falafel to sandwiches and wraps and this falafel and apple salad recipe went down really well. Graham and I both really enjoyed it. Needless to say Cooper would never eat this. He's funny with it comes to sandwiches. He likes them plain. 

He will eat a sandwich with peanut butter and jam, peanut butter and Nutella, butter and jam, Oh and he will eat falafel on a wrap with some cream cheese, but that's as exciting as it gets. 

Salad on a sandwich? You have to be joking! It's so odd that he likes cheese and crunchy salad vegetables but won't accept them on a sandwich. I really hope his tastes change and develop as he gets older. Thank goodness he loves homemade soup!


Cornish Cup Punch Recipe - Wot No Pimms?

We all love a glass of Pimms in the summer, but there's a new kid on the block. Curio Cornish Cup. It's inspired by a traditional punch drunk by the British Navy in the 17th Century and can be made up exactly like Pimms or served over ice with ginger beer.

The base is a Mullion Dry Gin blended with botanicals and Chai tea. The flavours include rich malty Assam tea, cardamom pods and cinnamon. 

It's absolutely delicious served both ways, as a punch or with ginger beer. The punch is definitely a great one to sip while sitting in the garden and mixing it with ginger beer is a great one to serve at BBQs. Try it both ways and see which you like best.


Chip Shop Battered Tofu Recipe

Chip Shop Battered Tofu

There's nothing better in the summer than walking along a beach or sitting in a harbour watching the boats and eating a bag of hot fluffy chips with lashings of salt and vinegar.

Going to a chip shop as a vegetarian can be a bit like playing Russian roulette. First you have to do a bit of detective work and find out what oil they use (many use beef dripping) and then there's that moment when you optimistically or if you've done this before pessimistically look at the menu hoping there might be something exciting to order. That bag of chips is great when you are walking along the beach, but it's not a very filling or satisfying evening meal.

Chip shop battered tofu. Serve with chips, peas and a wedge of lemon. Suitable vegetarian, vegan and dairy-free diets.


Honey Badger Cocktail Recipe

Looks good doesn't it? It's really refreshing. Honey Badger is a long cool cocktail made with Golden Champion Beer, honey, basil and bitters. 

Golden Champion Beer is a crisp and fruity floral summer beer, which is the perfect beer to serve ice cold at a BBQ or made into this cocktail.

If you are a strict vegan you could replace the honey with agave nectar in this recipe. Golden Champion Beer is vegan as are all the bottled beers from Hall & Woodhouse.

I just realised my cocktails this week are all very woodland creature. The last one was purple stag and this one is honey badger, maybe I need to start a series.


Meat Free Monday Vegetarian Recipes


Well it's Monday again. Wasn't it just yesterday I was saying that to you?

Where does the time go?

This week Cooper is back at school. He was very eager to go back. All his friends are still in his class, but he has a new teacher.

On his first day back we (well I say we, but I just advised him and and dealt with the oven) made chocolate cake. It's become our family tradition to make a back-to-school chocolate cake on the first day of a new school year. The next day he took it into school to share with his friends. I'm sure his teacher was delighted to divide up and share such a gooey chocolate cake to lots of children in white shirts. Whoops!

Enough about cake and our week, let's have a look at another seven delicious recipes for this week's Meat Free Mondays. Hopefully it will inspire you to cook vegetarian more than one day this week, although one day is an excellent start.


Purple Stag Cocktail Recipe

Purple Stag Cocktail Recipe

This is the second in my series of drinks posts. I realised I share very few drink recipes or recommendations apart from smoothies, so this week I am sharing some tasty summer drinks. 

In my last post I shared 7 refreshing soft and non-alcoholic drinks for summer. They are great if you are pregnant, it's your turn to drive or you are just trying to cut down on how many units you are drinking each week.

I this post I say to hell with that and share some alcohol. Well do have to cover both sides don't I?

7 Refreshing Soft and Non-Alcoholic Drinks for Summer

7 Refreshing Soft and Non-Alcoholic Drinks for Summer

I share lots of recipes with you, but they're mostly recipes for meals. While summer lasts I thought it would be good to share a series of posts on summer drinks.

Now I've probably mentioned I like a glass of wine with dinner, but I also love refreshing summer drinks. I mean who doesn't love a glass or two of Pimms?

But what if you are the designated driver at a summer BBQ or party, pregnant or just trying to cut back on alcoholic drinks? Often all you can expect is to be offered some fizzy juice or a glass of water.

We can do better than that! I have seven refreshing and delicious summer drinks that you can enjoy and not feel like you are missing out.


Meat Free Mondays - Summer 2017

Happy Monday!

How are you? How has your week been?

Our week has been full of fun for my wee boy and the last week of the summer holidays too.

He's been out on his scooter, playing in the park, eye bombing, playing board games, walking on the beach and today he went to a animal handling session. He's had a haircut in a hipster barbers and now he's tucked up snug in bed ready for an early start tomorrow for his first day of school.

Now we've caught up it's time for the recipes.

You may eat vegetarian every day or just once a week, whichever way you eat, enjoy this week's recipes and tune in next Monday for a new batch of recipes.


Smashed Potato Salad with Pesto Dressing

Smashed Potato Salad with Dairy-Free Pesto Dressing

I eat a lot more salads in the summer, even when the weather is bleugh. 

Sometimes we have a salad like this smashed potato salad or a pasta salad for dinner (like we did last night), for lunch it might be a couscous salad and at other meals you will often find salad on the side. 

In fact I think we eat more salad vegetables than any other type at this time of year. Salads are so quick and easy and a lot less cooking too.


Meat Free Mondays August 2017

Happy Monday!

How are you? How has your week been?

I've had a super busy week, yes I know, what's new?  Not much to share though.

I usually start the post with a photo of food, but I thought I'd share a photo of my kitchen instead to show you just how small it is. See the sink there. The draining board takes you right to the kitchen door, that leads into my conservatory which we use as a dining room, overlooking the garden.

Yes, it's that small. Now imagine it a bit more packed with gadgets.  I don't that microwave any more. My bread maker is now in place of the microwave and beside that is my toaster, kettle and blender, with a waffle maker squashed behind them. On the middle unit I now have a few big jars of spices and lentils. It's pretty packed. 

Oh yes and my cooker top is covered with my cast iron pots, that I leave on top instead of lugging them in and out of the cupboard. Yes this is a false representation of how my kitchen actually looks, but it gives you an idea of how small it is.

Is your kitchen teeny like mine or huge? Go on, make me jealous!

Anyway less of my kitchen and onto the recipes. There weren't as many recipes this week. I guess people are on holiday and enjoying the good weather instead of cooking and blogging, so I'm going to share a few recipes from my archives too. I hope you enjoy them.


Roast Vegetable and Hummus Pizza (vegan and dairy-free)

I had you at pizza didn't I?

If you're anything like us you love pizza. Our standard choice is a Margherita pizza with added veggies, but today we decided to try something different and went for a blond pizza with roast vegetables and hummus.

The truth is we've had pizza twice this week. Cooper wanted to make pizza from scratch so he and I both worked on a dough and we ended up with too much pizza for one night.

The first night we had it our favourite way. Our homemade thin pizza base, topped with my whizz bang pizza (blender) sauce, then mozzarella (vegan for Graham) and lots of veg. Cooper had sweetcorn on his, he likes to keep it simple.

The second night I spread the pizza base with a thick layer of hummus, topped it with lots of freshly roasted vegetables, a sprinkle of oregano, paprika and black pepper and a drizzle of olive oil. It was actually really good!

A homemade white pizza with hummus in instead of tomato sauce, roast vegetables, herbs and spices. Suitable for a vegetarian, vegan or dairy-free diet.


Best Tomato and Basil Pasta Sauce

Best Tomato and Basil Pasta Sauce. A simple but fresh sauce. Full of flavour but low in calories. It's a real family favourite and suitable for a vegetarian, vegan or dairy free diet.

Best ever?
The best tomato and basil pasta sauce is simple but fresh sauce made with tinned chopped tomatoes, garlic and fresh basil. Full of flavour but low in calories. It's a real family favourite and suitable for a vegetarian, vegan or dairy free diet.

Yep! I would say so. I started making fresh tomato and basil sauce for pasta when I was a student. It was an easy sauce I could make to feed myself and my friends, even when my boyfriend (husband now) would invite bands to stay in our student flat and I would end up feeding a dozen hungry lads.

Over the years the sauce has been tweaked to what I like to think is the best version of it. Back in my student days I would never have added red wine to a sauce as it was too much of an extravagance and I had to watch my pennies, but it does make a big difference to the favour. Originally I would have used dried basil, but of course adding fresh basil gives such of pop of flavour to the sauce and I seem to remember adding tomato ketchup to the sauce if I didn't have any tomato puree but I'd never do that now.


Meat Free Mondays - 7 Spectacular Veggie Recipes

Happy Monday! How are you?

I've had a good week. I was at work Monday and Tuesday then I had the rest of the week off with Cooper. It was great to spend some proper time with him. We spent time in our favourite book shop, went out for lunch, visited a museum, played board games, made pizza from scratch and did some eye bombing. It was great fun and over way too quickly. I'm back at work today and feeling quite sad about that. Why do holidays whizz by so quickly?

I'm back into the daily routine now and that means less time to think about cooking and lots of rushed meals in the evenings so planning is a must and that brings me nicely to this week's Meat Free Mondays and another fabulous collection of recipes for you to try. 

I hope you'll join me with some veggie meals this week.


Cheesy Cauliflower and Potato Bake with Spinach (Veggie & Vegan Recipes)

A comforting cauliflower cheese bake with a difference. Cauliflower and waxy baby potatoes in a cheese and spinach sauce topped with mozzarella and baked until golden. Veggie and vegan recipe.

Did I have you at potatoes or was it the cheese?

Think cauliflower cheese with baby potatoes but in a creamy cheese and spinach sauce topped with golden melted mozzarella. Vegan? Don't worry I made a dairy and vegan version of this dish for you.

There really is nothing like a cheesy bake on a dreich, wet day.


Meat Free Mondays - 7 Vegetarian Recipes to Inspire (24 July 2017)

Happy Monday! How are you?

It's been pretty quiet here, well when I say pretty quiet we have been busy with work and our busy home life like usual. My blog has been quiet, but I do have a couple of rather good recipes to share with you this week. Before I do, I have some more delicious vegetarian recipes to share with you. I hope they encourage you to go meat free for some of the week or even just inspire you to try something new.



Happy Monday!

How are you? You may have noticed I took a wee break. We were up in the Scottish Highlands for a week staying in a gorgeous converted granary in Ballindalloch. It was just what we needed. Lots of walks up hills and by lochs, not to forget the beaches and castles. So relaxing, although I did cook nearly every night, but for a change I had a huge open-plan kitchen to cook in, so that was a joy after my poky wee kitchen.

It's Monday again and I've been back at work today. I'm home after a trip to the pub for dinner with friends after work and it's time to share some recipes with you to inspire you for the week ahead.


Old-Fashioned Strawberry and Vanilla Fairy Cakes with Sprinkles

It's strawberry season and today I'm bringing you these old-fashioned strawberry and vanilla fairy cakes with sprinkles. 

This is an old recipe that my mum would make for me as a child. She has no idea where it came from. It's scribbled in her trusty cookbook that's filled with lots of magazine and newspaper cuttings as well as handwritten recipes from family and friends. I had to convert it from pounds and ounces.

What are fairy cakes, basically cupcakes before they got posh. A simple old-fashioned recipe our mothers and grandmothers made. These are topped with a generous amount of strawberry jam, whipped cream, sprinkles and a strawberry.

What are fairy cakes?

Fairy cakes are an old-fashioned bake. They are basically what a cupcake was before it got fancy. The type of simple little cake our mothers and grandmothers made us topped with a little white icing and little else. If we were lucky they would let us help bake and decorate them and if they were feeling extravagant the would make them into butterfly cakes. 

Butterfly cakes

Butterfly cakes are fairy cakes with the top sliced off. Then they are topped with whipped cream and the remaining slice is cut in half and stuck in the cream to look like wings.

There was none of this nonsense with rainbow frosting, 101 fillings and sprinkles in a variety of colours and shapes. Hundreds and thousands were as close as we got to fancy back then.


5:2 Diet - Grilled Vegetable Couscous Salad

I often make couscous salad for lunch. Well to be exact I make it the night before and pop it in the fridge. I love that I don't have to use any pots. I just pour my couscous into a measuring jug and cover it with boiling water, then let it do it's think while I finely chop some carrot, cucumber and cherry tomatoes. Then I fluff the rice up with a fork and mix it with the chopped salad.

Adding flavour to couscous

For extra flavour I crumble half a vegetable stock cube into the measuring jug with the couscous before adding the boiling water, then I give it all a good stir.

Do you flavour your couscous or leave it plain?


Savoury Cheese Log with Parsley & Pistachios (veggie & vegan)

Cheese Log - A retro canape from the 1970s. The cheese log could regularly be seen on buffet tables alongside sausage rolls, devilled eggs and vol au vents. It's easy to make but needs to chill in the fridge overnight before it's coated in herbs and nuts. This recipe can be veggie, vegan or dairy-free. Serve with oatcakes or crusty bread.

Do you remember these cheese logs from the 70s or perhaps you remember them as a cheese ball? If you're too young to remember them, read on.
A retro canape from the 1970s. The cheese log could regularly be seen on buffet tables alongside sausage rolls, devilled eggs and vol au vents. It's easy to make but needs to chill in the fridge overnight before it's coated in herbs and nuts. This recipe can be veggie, vegan or dairy-free. Serve with oatcakes or crusty bread.

1970s Fashion

The 70s were a time of living rooms full of wood and lots of earthy tones, Think mustard and brown and purple, with heavy fabrics and big swirly patterns. We were wearing the same kind of colours too, but adding in lots of denim. We wore maxi dresses, mini skirts and mini dresses, flared jeans, cords, polo neck jumpers and shirts with big collars. Yes it was rather crazy.


Meat Free Mondays - 7 Recipes for the Week Ahead (3 July 2017)

Happy Monday everyone! How are you?

Now I'm saying Happy Monday, but it may be Tuesday by the time I post this. We are as I speak making a mercy dash to Glasgow as some idiot took Elizabeth's (from Elizabeth's Kitchen Diary) case from the train in Dundee thinking it was his own and dumped it there. Not only did he dump it there, but took a train back to Glasgow to get his own case not bothering in the least about Elizabeth's which he could have taken with him. Some people are just so selfish and vile.

Luckily I have a rather wonderful husband, who offered to make the hour and a half trip through to Glasgow so Elizabeth's holiday with her family wouldn't be ruined. He is a star! Hopefully the good karma fairy will reward him for his kindness at some point in the future.


But back to the recipes.

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