Happy Thanksgiving!



Happy Thanksgiving! No I’m not American and no I don’t really have any American family, in all honesty I just want to make a pumpkin pie because I have never made one. Actually I have never eaten one either, until now. I must say I enjoyed it and definitely will make one again, they are surprisingly easy.



This recipe I stole from the hummingbird bakery as I had no clue where to start, I had however brought a pumpkin.


  • 260g plain flour
  • 1/2tsp salt
  • 110g butter

For the filling:

  • 1 egg
  • 425g pumpkin puree
  • 235ml evaporated milk
  • 220g caster sugar
  • 1/4tsp ground cloves
  • 1tsp salt
  • 3/4tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 ground ginger
  • 1tbsp plain flour
  • lightly whipped cream to serve


  1. For the pastry, put the flour, salt and butter in a bowl and rub together until you get a breadcrumb consistency. Add a tablespoon of water one at a time beating well after each addition until the mixture comes together to form a dough. Wrap the dough in clingfilm and leave to rest for 1 hour.
  2. Preheat the oven to 170c/gas 3.
  3. Lightly dust the work surface with flour and roll out the dough with a rolling pin. Line the prepared pie dish with dough and trim the edges with a sharp knife.
  4. Lay a sheet of greaseproof paper over the dough and pour in the baking beans and bake for 10 minutes. Remove the greaseproof and the baking beans and bake for a further 10 minutes. The dough should still be pale and slightly raw.
  5. All the recipes I have found says to used a tin of pumpkin puree, I made mine by simply cutting the pumpkin up and roasting until it soften then blitz it in a food processor.
  6. Next put the egg, pumpkin puree, evaporated milk, sugar, cloves, salt, cinnamon, ginger and flour in a large bowl and mix with a wooden spoon until everything is well combine and there are no lumps.
  7. Pour the mixture into the pie crust and bake in the oven for 30-40 minutes or until the filling is set firm and doesn’t wobble when shaken.
  8. Leave to cool and serve with a dollop of lightly whipped cream and sprinkle with cinnamon.

So that’s how you make a pumpkin pie. To make the recipe even easier simply buy a ready made pastry or even better a ready made pastry case (it means skipping steps 1-4).



Bonfire Night!



Where has the year gone? Bonfire Night already? I can’t quite believe it! I must say this is my favourite time year, mainly because there are so many celebrations (in which food plays a key part which is always a plus). As you may of guessed this blog post is about Bonfire Night. I have just the one recipe for you but trust me it’s a good one, a real showstopper, and as always I have a cheat to speed up the progress. So let’s get in to it!



This recipe I got from my delicious magazine.

Toffee Apple Sticky Toffee Pudding:


  • 100g unsalted butter, plus a extra knob for frying the apples
  • 4 eating apples
  • 180g dates
  • 150g boiling water
  • 2tsp vanilla extract
  • 150g light muscovado sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbsp black treacle
  • 175g self-raising flour
  • 1tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 100ml milk

For the toffee sauce:

  • 225g light muscovado sugar
  • 100g unsalted butter
  • 275ml double cream
  • 1tbsp black treacle
  • 3 toffee apples


  1. Melt a knob of butter in a frying pan. Core and slice the apples, then fry in the butter for 10-15 minutes until caramelised.
  2. Meanwhile put the dates in a bowl and soak in the boiling water.
  3. Heat the oven 170c/150c/gas 3. Beat together 100g butter and 150g of sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition then beat in the treacle and vanilla extract.
  4. Sift over the flour and bicarbonate of soda, gently fold in along with the milk. Stir in the dates and most of the fried apples (leave some for decoration).
  5. Pour the mix into a casserole dish, place the remaining apple on the top, then put into the oven and bake for 50 minutes or until the pudding is firm, and a skewer pushed into the middle comes out clean.
  6. To make the toffee sauce, put the 255g sugar, 100g butter and half of the cream and heat gently. Once the sugar has dissolved turn up the heat and add the treacle. Let it bubble (stirring all the time) for 2-3 minutes until the mixture turns a rich toffee colour. Then take off the heat and stir in the rest of the cream.
  7. To finish off pierce the pudding all over with a skewer and pour over some of the toffee sauce and then top with the toffee apples.

So you can make your own toffee apples (I will put the recipe below) however personally I brought toffee apples as they are just as good and are of course a lot quicker then making your own.

Toffee Apples:


  • 8 apples
  • 500g caster sugar
  • 2tsp white wine vinegar
  • 50g unsalted butter
  • 1tbsp golden syrup


  1. Push skewers or clean twigs into the centre of the apples.
  2. Put the sugar, vinegar, butter, syrup and 150ml of cold water in to a sauce pan and heat on a low heat until the sugar has dissolved. Turn up the heat  to medium-high and boil until the mixture turns golden brown in colour. Take the pan off the heat.
  3. Dip the apples into the toffee apples, turning to fully coat. Set aside for at least 30 minutes.


Oranges and …



I have had a busy last few weeks. I have been away to Gloucester and then came back to a new job. But anyway this week the feature ingredient is oranges. With autumn beginning to creep in, these recipes are a move away from summer towards the comforts of winter. I love autumn’s warm days and chilly evenings and the beautiful autumn leaves. It is the autumn colours that really inspired me to use orange as my feature ingredient. So anyway let’s get down to the recipes.



This week’s first recipe is a tender roasted chicken with sliced oranges and carrots

Roast Chicken with Citrus and Carrots:

Serves: 2   Prep: 10 minutes   Cook: 50 minutes


  • 2 Chicken Breasts
  • 300g carrots
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 2 oranges (one half juiced)
  • 1tsp vegetable oil
  • 1tbsp lemon juice
  • 1tbsp cider vinegar
  • 4tbsp vegetable stock
  • 2tsp of marmalade


  1. Heat the oven to 200C/180C fan /gas 6.
  2. Put the carrots, garlic and orange slices into a large roasting tin, then toss with the oil and season well.
  3. Season the chicken breast, then sit them on top of the veg.
  4. Roast for 40 mins until the carrots are tender and the chicken is turning golden.
  5. Brush the chicken breasts with the marmalade.
  6. Stir the citrus juice, vinegar and sugar together until the sugar dissolves. Pour over the veg, add vegetable stock.
  7. Roast for another 10 mins until the carrots are surrounded with syrupy sauce and the chicken is golden. Season the sauce to taste, then serve.



The second recipe this week is a favourite of mine and these flapjacks are extra tasty.

Orange Flapjacks:

Serve: 16   Prep: 15-20 minutes   Cook: 30-40 minutes


  • 250g unsalted butter
  • 250g golden caster sugar
  • 175g golden syrup
  • 425g porridge oats
  • zest of 2 oranges
  • 3 tbsp orange marmalade


  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/gas 4/fan 160C
  2. Generously butter a 28 x 28cm shallow baking tin.
  3. Melt the butter, sugar and syrup over a medium heat, stirring all the time.
  4. Take off the heat and stir in the oats, and orange zest. The mixture should be quite soft.
  5. Tip the mixture into the baking tin and level it off. Bake for around 30-40 minutes or until the edges are golden brown but the centre is still a little soft.
  6. Remove from the oven and mark into 16 pieces while it is still warm, cutting down halfway through the mixture with a sharp knife. Leave to cool.
  7. Heat the marmalade with 1 tbsp water until it becomes syrupy. Brush this glaze over the flapjack mixture and leave to cool before cutting into 16 pieces, then serve.

So that’s this week’s recipes, inspired by autumn but with an essence of summer. Enjoy!