• Breakfasts,  Eggs,  No-Bake,  Recipes,  Sweet

    How To Make Pancakes – The Quick And Easy Way

    My frying pan gets used at least every second day, pancakes on a Sunday are a regular treat, and I like to use it to add colour (and flavour) to meat before cooking in the oven. The beauty of this pancake recipe is that it doesn’t take long to put together, you don’t need to wait for the batter to get smooth, it contains very few ingredients, and it becomes a balanced meal once we have some fruit on the side. Mind you there’s nothing stopping you making this a savoury dish. I suppose we’ve become used to this as a sweet treat. The sweetness is all in the extras,…

  • Recipes,  Sweet

    Refined Sugar Free Granola Bars

    Let’s face it. We’ve all had school mornings where we’ve slept it in/you’ve spent too long wrestling with a uniform/you just don’t know what happened to the time & you need to grab something healthy as you go out the door. I love these granola bars, I’ve designed them to use natural sweeteners rather than sugar and they are so easy to put together. The seeds add protein, the oats are low GI and the dried fruit adds more fibre again. Truth be told my boys would eat these bars day and night if I let them.

  • Recipes,  Sweet

    Apple Crumble

    Pork and apples go so well together but I often find it’s a bit too much of a stretch to get the kids to eat apple sauce with their pork chops. Because apples contain so much citric acid and pectin, they cut through fatty meals very well so if you have a heavy dinner, apple crumble with a little low-fat yoghurt is a great way to finish a meal. I don’t know about you but having a nice pudding or “puddy” as it’s called in our house (thanks Dad) is handy for bribing kids to eat their meal. I love that this is fruit based. When I was 5 our…

  • Baking,  Recipes

    Homemade Brown Bread

    I used to bake soda bread about once a fortnight but we did buy a lot of sliced pans. My hubby was partial to a slice of batch and while I didn’t always eat it, we’d buy about 2 loaves of bread a week. The boys would have sandwiches, and then there was toast with melted butter, which is of course the stuff that food dreams are made of. I was playing around with Mam’s brown bread recipe (it’s very reliable and you can find it in my cookbook which can be ordered here) and came up with a version which literally takes 5 minutes to throw into a bowl,…

  • Baking,  Recipes,  Sweet

    Lovely Lemon Biscuits

    As today is the last day of primary school for 9 whole weeks, classes are allowed to take treats into school. Sweets and chocolate are, as a rule, not allowed in school due to a healthy eating policy. For today though, as it’s a half day, the 6 year old was allowed to choose what treats he wanted to bring in. When I asked him what he’d like for his treat I expected that he’d ask to go to the local shop to pick up some goodies. I was wrong. Yesterday I got my instructions. He required vanilla biscuits with icing. Except when I went to make the vanilla biscuits…

  • Fruit,  Recipes,  Sweet

    Sweet Mac And Cheese

    As a child I always believed that macaroni was a sweet pasta dish. I didn’t realise that the name of a past corresponds to a shape. My childhood macaroni was normally made with penne. Dad used to cook it in a double-boiler, it’s a type of bain marie. The pasta was slowly cooked in a custard sauce and it was rib-stickingly good. This kind of dish was never cooked in the Summer months, but I have great memories of many milk puddings when growing up. Rice, semolina (with a sinful spoon of jam in the middle), tapioca, and this mysterious macaroni. Now I know that macaroni is a type of…

  • Fruit,  No-Bake,  Recipes,  Sweet

    Low Sugar Jam

    Jam is sweet. It’s meant to be sweet; the sugar used preserves the fruit and makes the jam last for longer. In my house that could mean up to a year; providing I use a sterilised jar, and store it in a cool, dark place. What if there was a way to make low sugar jam? You’d still have a “set” consistency, but the trade-off would be that you’d have to make smaller quantities because the jam wouldn’t last so long. I’ve tested plenty of jam recipes over the years. I’ve made jam with less sugar than recommended, replaced the refined sugar with fruit sugar (fructose), used honey, and used…

  • Fruit,  No-Bake,  Recipes,  Sweet

    Cherry Chocolate Cheesecake Pots

    Why would you want to make this cheesecake? Well you could be on a low fat diet, trying to lose weight, or maybe you might be trying to reduce your sugar consumption. It could be all of the above, as is the case with my family members. While I won’t identify them on the blog, I can tell you that in the past 6 weeks, these 3 inspiring people have managed to lose a combined total of just under 3 stone (that’s 42lbs or 19kg). You don’t need to cook, nor do you need any fancy equipment to be able to make these cheesecake pots, just make sure you have…

  • Baking,  Cupcake,  Recipes,  Sweet

    Simnel Cupcakes

    Apparently simnel cake is traditionally eaten on Mothering Sunday. I have to say I never remember eating simnel cake then, but it always featured on our Easter table as I was growing up. Technically simnel cake is a similar mixture to a Christmas cake, and has some of the same flavours. However unlike Christmas cake, you won’t find any sickly sweet white icing (be it fondant or royal), and the almond paste is baked into the cake, with a thin layer on top that’s caramelised under the grill before serving. The thing is though, simnel cake is beautiful but a flipping heavy cake to make. It is prone to collapsing…

  • Fruit,  No-Bake,  Recipes,  Sweet

    Raspberry Curd

    What is curd? Sweet curd is made with 4 main ingredients. 3 of which are always butter, sugar, and eggs. The 4th ingredient is normally a tart or citrus flavour. Once made properly it sets to a dropping consistency. This is because both the butter and the egg yolks play a part in the setting process. You’ve probably heard of lemon curd. It is extremely easy to make – in fact, if you want to see me make it, plus get the recipe you can head on over to my lemon curd recipe by clicking the image below.

  • Baking,  Fruit,  Recipes,  Sweet

    Raspberry Brownies

    I’ve come over a bit romantic and have been revisiting my favourite recipes just in time for Valentine’s Day. This is not sugar-free, gluten-free or fat-free. This is a whole sugar, fat, wheat in your face kind of dessert that is perfect with a spoon of whipped cream or even eaten warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. I don’t want to be virtuous all the time, everything is okay in moderation. Of course the raspberries are frozen as they’re out of season, but that’s okay!

  • Baking,  Cake,  Recipes,  Sweet

    Honey, Ginger And Apple Cake

    This morning a mist rolled down from the Mourne Mountains to the sea and enveloped our town in swirls of myth. I was half expecting to see Queen Maeve and her warriors charge past the front door as we piled into the car to get to school. It was the kind of mist that deadens the sound of engines, it made me feel like we were the only 2 people in the world walking home today. Just the small boy and I, wrapped against the frost and fog, racing back to get a hot mug of tea.