nene local | helen dawson

 

Category: Cookery

Save your Kitchen and Save your Sanity this Christmas

Save your kitchen and save your sanity this Christmas

It’s the most wonderful time of year, where we can eat drink and be merry and this year more than ever it is a great time to be enjoying time with our family.

One of the downsides of all that eating, and drinking is it requires a whole lot of time in the kitchen preparing festive treats as well as all the inevitable cleaning up afterwards.

This Christmas, whether you want to prepare some festive treats as gifts, make a delicious eggs benedict Christmas brunch, or impress with your turkey dinner- the Thermomix can help save your sanity and save your kitchen this Christmas.

What is the Thermomix? thermomix

The Thermomix is all your kitchen gadgets in one, combining an incredible 20 features – you can whisk, caramelize, brown, chop, steam, sauté, blend, boil, knead, emulsify, mill, grind, grate, and knead all at the touch of a button.

Even the most reluctant chef will be drawn to the design of the sleek, compact unit with easy to use touch screen features. With smart technology your Thermomix constantly gets better with new updates and new functions to make life in the kitchen easier.

Unlimited recipes

Using the built-in Wi-Fi connectivity you can access Cookidoo with 40,000 recipes at the touch of a button or you can use the guided cooking function to see step by step instructions to create everything from festive cocktails to delicious bread or even help with Christmas dinner itself.

There are so many recipes to inspire you and help you get creative in the kitchen. You can even cater for allergies or dietary requirements.

An extra pair of hands in the kitchen

When your time is precious you do not want to be spending hours slogging away in the kitchen. The machine has the speed of having an extra pair of hands alongside you.

There are automated functions to let the Thermomix do the work for you. Whether you use the built-in scales to weigh out your Christmas cake ingredients all at once or setting a pulled pork to slow cook for your Christmas buffet.

It’s like having a professional chef next to you as you create restaurant quality food in minutes, at the touch of a button and all with minimal effort and minimal mess.

No need to use every pot, pan and appliance

One of the downsides of a big Christmas dinner is the inevitable mess that is left in the kitchen from all the dishes and appliances. It all needs to be cleaned and packed away, just at the point when you want to put your feet up.

You can clear your cupboards and workbenches of your blender, juicer, slow cooker, electric mixer and much more. The Thermomix combines all your appliances into one. It even weighs and measures your ingredients as you go.

thermomix

Not only can it help with all the jobs that you would need multiple appliances for, but it even has a self-cleaning function.

Yes! By filling the mixing bowl with water and washing up liquid and setting the unit to the built-in self-cleaning function you can finally put your feet up.

Being able to enjoy being in the kitchen and create delicious festive food to spread joy can really save your sanity this Christmas. The only downside of the Thermomix is that next Christmas EVERYONE will want come to your house for dinner.

Get in touch to book your FREE no obligation demonstration where I can show you the Thermomix can make a big difference to your Christmas.

Book your demo or follow us here: https://linktr.ee/Flyingfoodieuk

Hawkwell Herbs April Recipe

Tasty Bites for April laziness –  with the Herbs!

 

Spring is sprung and many people are out in the garden ‘doing stuff’!  If, like me, you prefer being outside to being in the kitchen, then this is the month to bridge that gap between slow cooking of hot, warming, food and the ease of a quick BBQ!  In Spring, I always go for tasty bites. Warm. But quick to make.

 

I am a great believer in not using supermarkets if you can, and instead supporting the amazing small food businesses that we are lucky enough to have in and around Northamptonshire. And this month I would like to introduce you to Waterloo Cottage Farm (http://waterloocottagefarm.co.uk). You will know that I am a huge believer in only eating  meat that has been ‘kindly lived and kindly killed’ and this amazing place meets those requirements for me. And, being an ex environmental lawyer, organic is the way to go for me.  So off I popped for a visit and returned with enough goodies to make my first Tasty Bites for Spring!

 

Pork and Garlic Chives bites

 

What do you for each person?

1 large cabbage leaf,  some butter/oil/lard,  a slice of pork,  a few Garlic Chives.  And a pan!

 

How do you make it?

Wilt your cabbage leaf so that it is malleable enough to use as a wrapping.  In your choice of butter/oil/lard, gently cook your pork in the pan.  Chop a few Garlic Chives (if you don’t have Garlic Chives, use garlic and onion – you will see now why Garlic Chives are so great as they avoid all that peeling and chopping!). Place your cabbage leaf on a chopping board,  place your cooked pork in the middle of it, with your Garlic Chives on top.  Wrap it all up in the cabbage leaf. Cut it in half. Welcome to your very tasty bite (or 2!)

 

 

A home made ‘lemonade’

Would you like something refreshing with that, to quench your thirst after all that outside work? Try making your own ‘lemonade’ using Lemon Balm (or Lemon Verbena or both!).   There are a number of different ways of making it depending on which herbs you have, how intense  you like the taste, and whether you would like to add sweetness.

lemonade hawkwell herbs

  1. Simplest way is to make some herbal tea with your Lemon Balm, leave it to cool.  Drink it as a cold tea.  Add Lemon Verbena or Lemon zest (if you have a lemon but the point about this drink is that you can substitute Lemon flavoured herbs for lemons) if you wish as part of the tea making brew.   Add sugar, (or Sweet Cicely or Korean Mint which are great sugar substitutes) if you have a sweet tooth.

 

  1. Or, for a little more of an intense flavour – take a pint of water, add about 10 long stems of Lemon Balm/Lemon Verbena to the water, bring it to the boil and then gently simmer it for about 10 minutes to get a more intense flavour than with the tea.  Add sugar if you wish or the sugar substitute herbs already mentioned (I don’t as I prefer a tarter lemon flavour than a sweeter one). Make sure you don’t let it burn dry! Then let it cool. Drain it to remove the leaves. Add some fizzy water (for those of us of a retro era, the good old Soda Stream comes in handy here..) to taste.

 

I always make too much, and let it go cold, and then put it in freezer cubes.  Ready to add to fizzy water on another occasion.

 

And, if you are ready for that gin and tonic at the end of your gardening exploits, add some to your gin and tonic for a burst of ‘lemoniness’…

 

Did you know?

Herbs are great for lazy cooks! Like me… I lose the will sometimes to peel and chop garlic and onions (a combination I love) so I always grow Garlic Chives which combine both flavours.  And sugar substitutes such as Sweet Cicely and Liquorice/Korean Mint are great for that sweetness of taste if you don’t have sugar to hand.

 

This month’s herbs encourage laziness!  Garlic Chives, Common Chives,  3 types of Lemon Balm. No more chopping, peeling and, in the case of lemons, having to go and buy some!   You can find them listed here: http://hawkwellherbs.co.uk/herb-of-the-month  and you can buy them at the Farmers’ Markets here during April: http://hawkwellherbs.co.uk/how-to-buy

 

 Where can you find the herbs this month?

 

Market Harborough Farmers’ Market – Thursday 4th April

Thrapston Farmers’ Market – Saturday 6th April

Olney Farmers’ Market – Sunday 7th April

Oundle Farmers’ Market – Saturday 13th April

 

And look out for the new cookery courses coming up in Sudborough soon!

https://hawkwellherbs.co.uk/cookery-courses

More Information

Hawkwell Herbs

07970 597 017

www.hawkwellherbs.co.uk

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Hawkwellherbs

Twitter: @hawkwell_herbs

Instagram@hawkwellherbs:

January Herb Salad – from Hawkwell Herbs

Sara Dixon from Hawkwell Herbs has come to talk to us about cooking with herbs, her monthly slot will include some herby recipes, plus where to find her stall and how to order or buy…

It’s a cold January, so why a salad? We need taste still, we need to feel we are indulging still, but, let’s face it, we put ourselves under pressure to go ‘healthy’ at the beginning of the year.  This recipe has taste, indulgence AND health.

hawkwell herbs

What do you need?

Oil – oil of your choice – try using flavoured oils if you have any – try indulging with a nut oil if you are able.

Onion – I like to use red onions for colour AND strong flavour.  Chop your onion quite small after peeling.

Bulghur wheat or any other grain of your choice – as long as it is capable of filling you up.  You can even use beans if you prefer.

Herbs of your choice – I tend to go with whatever I have the most of! I have used Parsley, which survives cold, frost, snow… and I have gone for the flat leaved variety which I prefer to the curly, I’m using Mint and have gone for Moroccan as it has a punchy taste but try any flavour mint that you have, and Land Cress which, if you haven’t tried it, is peppery.

Preparation: Chop the herb leaves for the dish itself but RETAIN the stalks as well (see below)

  1. Cook your chosen grain/beans according to manufacturer’s instructions.
    1. If you are going with the Bulghur Wheat, it is one third wheat to two thirds water (in volume), bring to the boil, simmer for about 10 minutes.
    2. Drain any excess moisture away.
  2. Whilst cooking your grain/beans, start to gently fry your onion in the oil until it goes soft. This is when the natural sugars develop too. Which helps if you crave that still-remembered Christmas sugar hit!
  3. The amount of oil you add is up to you but this is a dish which involves Bulghur Wheat which soaks up the oil very nicely as part of the final mixing.
  4. Once the onion begins to go soft, add your herbs. Turn the heat right down and gently stir them until they too begin to wilt. I like some crunch to my herbs as well as rawness of flavour but if you are using herbs which need some cooking, stir them for longer.
  5. Then add your Bulghur Wheat/grains/beans to the herb mix and mix it all together well.
  6. Eat hot or cold.

Did you know?

Retain the stalks of herbs (unless they are used in the dish itself) as they still have a use! I use them in stock, stews, casseroles, even herbal teas/tisanes as they often hold a great deal of flavour.

hawkwell herbs

Where can you find Hawkwell Herbs this month?

Sunday 6th January – Olney Farmers’ Market

Saturday 12th January – Oundle Farmers’ Market

Saturday 26th January – Ely Farmers’ Market.

PLUS Sara delivers herbs in ‘HerbBella the Van’ to Loyalty Card customers on Mondays and Fridays to keep everybody topped up in between markets.

hawkwell herbs

Special events this month:

Monday 7th January – a healthy afternoon tea party hosted with AmbaScarlett  https://www.facebook.com/events/1611948945572240/

Sunday 27th January – Hanslope Vegan Winter Fair  https://www.facebook.com/events/728024497577611/

Herb of the month for January

Another themed month!  A variety of herbs to help you make tasty herbal teas/tisanes, as well as herbs to pep up a winter salad.   As always, a Cooking Ideas booklet comes with each herb. All available at the Farmers’ Markets.

 

 

Vegan Delights from Pure and Raw Goodies

When someone says “Just to let you know my peanut butter ‘cheeseless’ cheesecake is packed with superfoods and wholefoods including nuts, cacao and coconut oil.

All my products are vegan, gluten free and refined sugar free” I just have to go and investigate.

 

Pure and Raw Goodies based over in Weston Favell produce vegan, raw well…err….  Goodies!!

 

I saw Sheena posting on Facebook about her vegan, refined sugar free Easter Eggs recently and knew I wanted to find out more about what she did.

pure and raw goodies | nene local

As some of you may know, I run a magazine called Aspen Girl, as well as Nene Local.  Aspen Girl is all about mind, body, spirit.  Last week my husband and I were trying out a vegan way of eating.  The idea of trying a vegan ‘cheese’ cake was going to go down a storm.

 

I collected from Weston Favell but Pure and Raw Goodies also sell through Daily Bread and Beckworth Emporium too.  Some items can be posted but not this lovely ‘cheese’ cake.

pure and raw goodies | nene local

Sheena informed me that the dessert would last a good few weeks in the fridge as with no cheese, butter, eggs etc in it there is very little to go off.  I’m not sure she anticipated my husband who said no way will it last in OUR fridge!  (He was right!!)

 

The dessert’s base, inner ‘cheese’ bit and ‘chocolate’ topping was incredible.  Very rich and satisfying and extremely filling.  I couldn’t eat a huge slice in one sitting, so it did mean it lasted a little longer.  Although it was Peanut Butter Cheeseless Cake, it wasn’t such a strong taste it knocked you sideways, the flavour was subtle but really nice.  I particularly loved the base, which I’d have happily eaten on its own as a cookie!

pure and raw goodies | nene local

My husband is a big cheese cake fan and so he was quite unsure about this vegan interloper.  To begin with……  most evenings until we finished it he would say “Shall we have a bit of that cake?”

pure and raw goodies | nene local

Keep an eye on the Pure and Raw Goodies Facebook page as she does various food fairs.  Although we would highly recommend looking through her page and just ordering yourself a little hamper to try!!!

 

More information

 

Pure and Raw Goodies

Telephone:  07792 287854

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/pureandrawgoodies/