Scottish Tablet


This is the ultimate sweet treat in my opinion!

What can you not love about a four ingredient recipe that gives you the Scottish equivalent of fudge?

Where as fudge may have a bit of chewy ness to it, tablet crumbles and has a grittiness that makes it divine!

We often make a batch around Christmas to give away and share if friends are round, this year I have also made it for the school cake stall at our local arts festival so fingers crossed it sells well!

I can’t make it sound healthy but it is gluten free and egg free!

A word of warning, don’t be tempted to make more than double this recipe at once, it becomes much harder to beat and get to the graining stage and the chances of being burnt with the bubbling sugar increase dramatically!


900g granulated sugar

200mls water

110g butter

1 x 380g tin condensed milk


Line a baking tray with baking parchment.

In a large pan over a medium heat the water and butter.

Once the butter has melted add the sugar and condensed milk.

Bring up to the boil.

Simmer, stirring constantly,  for 20mins until a caramel colour and thickened.

Take off the heat and beat until the mixture starts to go grainy.

Pour carefully on to the prepared tin.

Allow to cool completely and then break into small pieces and store in an airtight container.


Black Bean and Chorizo Soup


The  entire family loves this soup, smoky with a little chilli it reminds me of a bean chilli and with that in mind I serve it with a little grated cheese and a dollop of sour cream with corn chips on the side, possibly why the boys like it so much!

I use the stock from the Lime, Oregano and Smoky Chipotle Chilli Roast Chicken recipe in my blog, this stock instantly gives a hint of chilli to the soup.

If you are using regular stock add 2 teaspoons chipotle chilli powder and 1 tablespoon smoked sweet paprika at the same time as adding the ancho chilli.

To make this vegetarian, omit the chorizo, use vegetable stock, 2 teaspoons chipotle chilli and 5 teaspoons smoked paprika.

Serves 8-10 so, I freeze the leftovers for another day.


3 tablespoons olive oil

1 large onion, finely diced

3 cloves garlic, chopped finely

100g chorizo, skinned and chopped finely

1 large dried ancho chilli

1 x 800g tin, chopped tomatoes

1.5l chicken stock

2 x 425g tins black beans

1 x 400g kidney beans

3 tablespoons tomato paste


Bring the kettle to the boil.

Pop the chilli into a heat proof bowl and pour the freshly boiled water over.

Allow to stand for 30 minutes.

Remove the chilli, I take the skin off and deseed at this point and chop it finely. Set aside.

In a large pan, heat the oil over a medium heat, add the onion and garlic and cook until softened.

Add the chorizo and cook for a further 5 minutes until it has released its fat.

Pour in the tomatoes, ancho chilli, beans, tomato paste and stock, bring to the boil.

Allow to simmer for 30 minutes.

Serve with grated cheese, sour cream and avocado slices with tortilla chips on the side

Tofu, Broad Beans and Paneer in a Spicy Tomato Sauce


Bit of a long name for this one I’m afraid!

This started life as a Mattar Paneer but over the years has developed more to suit our tastes and what I have to hand in the kitchen.

This is not a hot curry, it’s full of flavour and I think, only needs some rice to go with it. This quantity serves 8-10 on its own but if you serve with another curry and dhal you have enough food for 25-30!

I have made this up until the paste has been made, allowed the paste to cool and stored it in the fridge for a couple of days to make at a more convenient time.


6 large tomatoes, chopped

50g peeled, fresh ginger, cut small

5 garlic cloves, skin removed

200mls water

4 tablespoons ghee

4 teaspoons cumin seeds

2 cinnamon sticks

6 cloves

8 peppercorns

2 large onions, peeled, halved and sliced thinly

1 green chilli, deseeded and cut into small pieces

1 teaspoon ground turmeric

4 teaspoons ground coriander

3 teaspoons ground cumin

2 teaspoons Kashmiri chilli powder

750mls milk

500g firm tofu, cubed

500g broad beans, blanched and skins removed

200g paneer, cubed


Process the tomatoes, ginger, garlic and water, I use my stick blender, set aside.

Heat the ghee in a large frying pan over a medium to high heat, add the cumin seeds, cinnamon, cloves and peppercorns and fry until the cumin seeds are darkening.

Add the onion and chilli and cook until the onion is soft, this will probably take 15-20 minutes.

Add the turmeric, coriander, ground cumin and chilli powder, cook until fragrant.

Pour the tomato mix into the pan, reduce the heat to low and simmer slowly until all the water has evaporated and a paste is left in the pan with the ghee leaching from it.

Now, pour in the milk and stir well.

Bring up to the boil and simmer, uncovered for 5 mins.

Add the Tofu, cook gently for 5 minutes.

Add the beans and paneer, cook gently for 5 minutes.

Serve with rice.


Coconut Shortbread


I grew up with this shortbread on the biscuit barrel regularly.

Mum always baked it in a tin, marked with a knife into wedges and using fork prongs to make a decorative pattern. This quantity makes four wheels.

The boys like biscuits rather than wedges, go figure, so I now roll the dough by hand and then roll it in coconut.

You can freeze the unbaked dough, I roll it into a fat sausage, double wrap in cling film and label. To bake, allow to defrost, roll the entire sausage in coconut and then cut slices and bake as below.

Makes around 36-40 depending on size.


450g butter, at room temperature

225g caster sugar

450g plain flour

225g desiccated coconut, plus extra

225g cornflour

2 teaspoons vanilla extract


Preheat the oven to 160 degrees Centigrade.

Line three baking sheets with baking parchment.

Cream the butter and sugar.

Add the remaining ingredients and beat to form a dough.

Pour a little extra coconut into a bowl.

Take a small piece of dough, size of a ping pong ball.

Roll it into a ball, roll it in the coconut and then gently flatten with your hand, place on the prepared baking sheet.

Repeat until all the dough is used, pop the first two trays into the oven and bake for 20-25 mins., keep an eye on them!

Once they are golden brown, allow to cool for 5mins and then remove to a cooling rack to cool completely, store in an airtight container.

Buckwheat Crepes with Persian Feta – Gluten Free


Normally, when I make these crepes I add a little melted butter but, as these were for a savoury filling I used a little garlic infused oil. With gluten free crepes you really need a little butter or oil to stop the crepe sticking to the pan.

Persian feta is a beautiful creamy cheese and as no one else in the family likes it I get to eat the whole pot! Feel free to change the cheese, soft goats cheese works really well too.

This recipe makes 8 large crepes. I haven’t given quantities for the filling, just suggestions as to what to add.



110g buckwheat flour

2 eggs

200mls milk

100mls water

2 tablespoons garlic infused olive oil


mixed salad leaves

sundried tomatoes

stoned olives


Persian feta


Heat a large non stick frying pan over a medium to high heat.

Measure the flour into the bowl, make a well in the centre.

Add the eggs to the well and, using a whisk, gently begin to whisk the eggs in, drawing flour from the edges.

As this thickens, add the milk and water gradually until all is combined.

Pour the oil into the batter and whisk well.

Pour enough batter into the pan to just cover the base as you swirl it around.

Allow to cook through and as you see the edges darken, using a fish slice, flip the crepe over and cook for a further minute until the crepe has a few golden spots on it.

Set aside on a plate, covered with a tea towel and repeat until all of the batter is used.

To fill, lay a crepe on the work surface, top one half with the filling ingredients, fold over the other half. Holding it firmly, fold this half into a quarter and pop on the plate.

Lime, Oregano and Smoky Chipotle Roast Chicken


I seem to be cooking with a lot of limes at the moment, maybe it’s with the start of summer and the temperature rising. This chicken is in the oven for longer than normal, this is to allow me to runaround picking up and dropping off the boys at their various playing fields and it makes the most succulent chicken that I pull off the bones and chop, skin and all, and serve with tortilla chips, guacamole, salsa and sour cream. Leftovers are perfect for filling quesadillas and the stock from the bones  makes an amazing stock for black bean soup. Serves 8-10. Ingredients 2 x 1.2-1.4kg chickens 3 limes 4 tablespoons oil A handful of fresh oregano 4 cloves garlic 4 teaspoons chipotle chilli powder 2 tablespoons sweet smoked paprika 2 teaspoons salt freshly ground pepper Method Preheat the oven to160 degrees Centigrade. Process the zest and juice of the limes, oil, oregano leaves, garlic, chipotle powder, paprika, salt and pepper to make a smooth sauce. Place the chicken in a roasting tin. Take the squeezed limes and oregano stalks and place them in to the chickens cavity. Pour the sauce over the chooks and rub well in with your hands. Take a piece of baking parchment, the size of your roasting tin, scrunch it up and run it under a tap. Squeeze the water out and place it over the top of the chicken, tucking it into the sides. Now, cover tightly with foil. Pop in the oven for 2 hours. After two hours, remove the foil and paper and baste, return to the oven. Baste regularly for a further hour. Remove from the oven and allow to sit for 20-30mins before taking the meat off the bone, with the skin attached, and chop into bite sized pieces.

Lime Cookies – Gluten and Egg free


I came up with these as we were using lime in our dinner, Pad Thai, and I didn’t want to waste the lovely lime zest!

These little morsels are gluten free,  egg free and lovely and crumbly.

Makes 30.


200g butter, softened

100g caster sugar

200g ground almonds

50g coconut flour

zest of two limes


Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Centigrade.

Cream the butter and sugar.

Add the almonds, coconut and lime zest and beat to a smooth dough.

Roll into small balls.

Place on the prepared tray, use a fork to flatten.

Bake for 10-15mins, keep and eye on them.

Remove and cool on a wire rack.



Blackened Sweetcorn with Red Onion


Sometimes I like a change from our usual corn on the cob. This is cooked in a similar way to a stir fry, high heat and keep it moving. It also works well on the flat plate of a barbecue.

I make this kind of corn when the main event on the plate is a little plain and I want something with a bit of heat to jazz it up.

We also sometimes eat this as a cold salad and I pop it into wraps for school lunches.

I use a chilli infused oil but regular works too and I mix my own Cajun Spice Rub, recipe is on the blog, but shop bought is fine.

Serves 4-6.


2 tablespoon chilli infused olive oil

2 small red onion, cut into wedges

4 ears/cobs of corn or 500g fresh or frozen corn

2-4 tablespoons Cajun Spice rub


Heat the oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat.

Add the onions and cook, stirring regularly until they are softening.

Add the spice mix and cook through until fragrant.

Now pour the corn in and over a high heat cook it, stirring constantly for 5 minutes until it is colouring up.



Pizza with Cauliflower Base – Gluten Free Pizza Base


It took me quite a long time to get my head around cauliflower as a pizza crust, it just didn’t make sense to me!

However, it does work, amazingly effective and nice and simple to make at the same time as the regular pizzas in our house.

This recipe made 2x30cm pizzas, the photo is deceptive!


1 cauliflower, around 900g, leaves trimmed

1 egg, beaten

100g Parmesan, grated


Trim the cauliflower and, using a food processor, process the stalks first, then add the rest so that you have a very fine crumb.

Pop the cauliflower in a microwavable bowl, cover, and blast for 8-10mins until cooked.

Pour into a fine mesh sieve and allow to sit, draining any liquid as it cools.

Preheat the oven to 220 degrees Centigrade.

Once cool enough to handle pour into a bowl and add the egg and cheese, mix well.

Line two pizza tins with baking parchment, using your hands, take half the cauliflower mix and gently push it onto the tin, push it all the way to the edges and repeat with the other half.

Pop in the oven for 20-25mins until golden brown.

Allow to cool a little and then top.

Bake until toppings are golden.


Pizza Crust


Friday night take out food challenge is upon me again so tonight we tackle pizza!

I find making pizza dough very satisfying, I don’t know many kids that don’t eat pizza so the diners are happy and I find kneading very therapeutic with a house hold of boys! Five minutes in  my life when I’m busy and cannot be disturbed or I may ruin their dinner, heaven!

I make my own dough but for the toppings anything goes as the boys make their own, they like pizza sauce that comes in a squeeze bottle at the moment, the adults have a little sieved tomato. The boys toppings revolve around meat with mozzarella, to save time, and my patience, I buy a big bag of the pre grated cheese for them.

The pizza in the photo is one of the boys, this recipe makes 4 large pizzas. This dough also makes around 10-15 mini pizzas, perfect for school lunch boxes and birthday parties and they freeze well too!


750g plain flour

4 teaspoons dried yeast

1 teaspoon salt

450mls warm water


Measure the flour, yeast and salt into a large bowl.

Add the water and, using a fork, stir until the dough starts to come together in large lumps.

Flour your work surface and tip the dough out, I use my hand and scrape all the dry stuff off the sides too.

Start needing your dough, it will take 5-8 mins until it becomes elastic, that means, as you need it starts to stretch and not break.

Sprinkle some flour into the bowl you used before and pop the dough in, cover with a tea towel.

Leave for 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 220 degrees Centigrade.

Take the dough and cut it into 4 pieces.

Take the first piece, flour your surface, using a rolling pin, roll the dough out to fit your tin.

Repeat with the rest of the dough.

Top with passata  or pizza sauce and go wild with your toppings. We sprinkle a little dried oregano over the finished pizza too.

Bake in the oven, keep an eye on it, it may take 5-10 minutes. In our pizza oven it takes around 3 minutes.