What I Wore Wednesday:A Day in London...

Been a long time since I did my "What I Wore Wednesday post" so I thought I would start as I mean to go on and join back in again....


On saturday we took a day trip to London on the train...


Me and two of my children in Regent's Park...

What I'm Wearing
Republic Gilet
Marks and Spencer Jumper
Republic Jeans
Reebok Trainers

And in the Zoo my Monkey suit...


After a busy day in the parks and Zoo a long walk back to the train station...


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Wordless Wednesday Linky....


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Squirrel Monkeys At London Zoo....

When to London Zoo for the first time at the weekends and had a great day out with my husband and 2 youngest children.Here is the pictures of the Squirrel Monkeys I took they are so sweet...






Can't wait to go back again soon....

The Pink Flamingos were beautiful and the Butterfly Paradise was amazing,I have always wanted to take a photo of butterflies but usual by the time I get my camera out they have gone where as here they have some amazing butterflies and I took quite a few.We entered the reptile house because my husband wanted to but the bugs would have to much for me to cope with !!


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CHABLIS Wine Pairing And Tasting Tips ...

The lovely people at Chablis have sent me 2 bottles of wine to try and see what food (me) a non wine expert would pair it with ....

Every weekend me and my husband love to pick out food and wine for a lovely evening in and I always have the last word on whether I think the wine he has picked will go with the food I have chosen.Having four children our Saturday night food usually consists of pasta,pizzas,salad and lots of yummy finger foods including seafood,with which this fine wine would be great.



Along with the wine I got an interesting booklet about the Chablis vineyards which
I found informative and helped give me a better understanding of what to look for in a wine.
35 million bottles of Chablis are produced every year and 3 out of 10 are sold in the UK.

These are the top tips I have learnt which I will now look for in all wines.So husband beware I will know if its cheap plonk or not!!



Step One-Appearance

  • Holding the glass by the stem or base will avoid warming your wine or transferring aromas from hand to bowl.
  • Take a moment to study the wine in the glass Clear or bright?
  • White wine ages darker to tawny brown after many years.
  • Swirl the glass and watch the droplets-"legs"- indicating alcohol content,the greater the number of legs ,the higher the alcohol content,the speed of which it fall also tells you if the wine is sweet (slow) or dry (fast)

Step Two-Nose

  • Aromas of wine may remind us of fruits ( grapefruits,apple, peach/black cherry,plum,raspberry) flowers (chamomile,jasmine,rose) spice (vanilla,cinnamon,black pepper),or vegetate aromas (asparagus,mushrooms,freshly-cut grass.)
  • Take a moment to swirl again and gently sniff the wine,how can you tell if its faulty? Cork taint is caused by a chemical resulting from a fungus in the natural bark,and may remind you of damp walls,mildew and mould

Step Three-Palate

  • Think about the aromas you found,take an initial sip.As far as tasting goes,the tongue detects acidity,bitterness,saltiness,savouriness and sweetness-only 5 thing!
  • Try a process now to link the taste with sense of smell-take another sip of wine,and draw air through your mouth as if you are taking in a mouthful of spaghetti
  • See how the tasting experience intensifies!

How long can you taste the wine for? This length if the wine-counted in seconds,either short (2-3),medium(5-6) or long (10 seconds +),and gives a reasonable level of cost,the longer the taste lasts the more expensive the wine.

This week I've been trying to be good and making lots of healthier meals so this is what I picked to go with the wine..

1.) Home made vegetables stir fry with Mushrooms,peppers,red onions,courgettes beansprouts,noodles and a chow main sauce...Now unusually I thought the wine went well with this the food complemented the wine giving a longer lasting intensity of flavours.


2.) And on Sunday Roast Pork and stuffing Sunday dinner...Learning as I have done I would not serve this wine with a roast dinner in the future as the food did stifle the flavour of the wine.Poor choice by me in hindsight.I'm Learning...


And save a little for supper to go with my cheese and crackers... I had a small piece of brie which seemed to really accentuate the flavours of the wine reminding me of warm summers in the park.


The two wines I recieved were:

1. Domaine Bois d'Yver Chablis 2008, available at Marks and Spencers (£13-99)

2. Chablis J.Moreau & Fils 2009,available at Marks and Spencers (£12-99)

About this review: I received 2 bottles of Chablis wine to see which food I would pair it with. Also this post will be entered into a competition to win a wine tasting weekend.I was not paid for this post and all thoughts on this post are my own honest opinions...
What I will take from this more than anything, is rather than just grabbing any wine which happens to be on the end of the aisle I will actually put some thought into it, and plan a meal around the wine choice knowing it will greatly improve the dining experience.As opposed to my normal method of what percentage alcohol is it and is it on special offer.

 Having wine just for the alcohol value nothing else.I am really pleased with how my eyes have been opened and that I have at my age learnt something..
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Rice Pudding With Marsala Poached Plums....


Ingredients

For the rice pudding
  • 1 pack of Carnation Rice Pudding instant dessert mix
  • 275 ml semi-skimmed milk
For the plums
  • 150ml (¼pt) Marsala wine
  • 1tsp arrowroot mixed with 1 tsp water
  • 150ml (¼pt) water
  • 25g (1oz) caster sugar
  • 9 plums, halved and stoned
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
Method
  • Preheat the oven to 180°C, 350°F, Gas Mark 4.
  • Mix together the Marsala, arrowroot, water and sugar.
  • Place the plums in a large ovenproof dish and pour over the Marsala mixture.
  • Add the cinnamon sticks and poach, uncovered, in the oven for about 40 minutes.
  • Turn the plums once during cooking.
  • Heat Carnation Rice Pudding instant mix with milk in the microwave or on the hob for 5 minutes, according to package instructions.
  • Leave to stand for 5 minutes.
  • Serve up a generous helping of rice pudding with the warm plums.
About this post-

Recipe and photo credit by- Carnation


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Creative Mondays Blog Hop Week 10 : Tangy Pineapple Smoothie....

Hello and welcome to Creative Mondays hosted by Clairejustineoxox and Judy-H-JS Thought where you can link up all your creative post each week.... what have you all been up to this week?

clairejustineoxox

I made some Tangy Pineapple Smoothie...


Serves 3-4

Ingredients
  • 250g Pineapple chunks
  • 1 Ripe Banana
  • 1 Clementine
  • 125g pot Natural yogurt
  • 125g pot peach yogurt
  • 150 ml Milk
  • 1 tsp honey
Method
  • Place all the ingredients into a blender or smoothie maker and blend for 30 second ,smoothie for 30 seconds.
  • Sieve if you don't like bits and serve straight away...
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Loch Fyne Oysters with Soy and Ginger...


Ingredients

  • 24 each 90/105 gm Loch Fyne Oysters
  • 50ml sweet dark soy sauce
  • 20gms peeled and finely chopped fresh ginger
  • 1 clove og garlic finely chopped
  • 50gms red pepper finely chopped
  • 100gms spring onions prepared and cut on a angle
  • 150ml extra virgin rapeseed oil
  • 2 heads pak choi
  • Freshly milled black pepper

Method

  1. heat the oven to 160 degrees c
  2. place the soy sauce, garlic, red pepper, ginger and rapeseed oil in a medium pan, warm and allow to infuse, reserve warm
  3. open the oysters, remove from the shell drain off the juices and strain through a fine chinois(sieve)
  4. reserve the base deep shell, wash and dry, arrange on a baking sheet and heat through the oven
  5. make sure the oysters are free from any shell
  6. heat a frying pan and quickly stir fry the pak choi in 25ml of the sauce infusion and some of the oyster juice, reduce over a high heat, reserve hot
  7. place the oysters in the half shells and heat through the oven for 2 minutes
  8. bring the sauce to the boil add the spring onions, remove from the heat
  9. take the oysters from the oven, arrange 6 per plate, spoon the sauce over the oysters and serve with the pak choi, serve the extra sauce in a dish

Chefs Note

  • No need to use any salt in this dish!

Guest Post Credits- Loch Fyne Osyters


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Silent Sunday....


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Dijon Monkfish....



Stylish dish of monkfish fillets, spread with Grey Poupon Dijon Mustard, wrapped in Proscuitto and pan fried, served with roasted vine cherry tomatoes and Dauphinoise potatoes, finished with white wine butter sauce....


 Serves 4 

Ingredients

  • 300ml/1/2 pt milk
  • 300ml/1/2 pt double cream
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
  • 2 large waxy potatoes, peeled and sliced Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 75g/3oz Gruyere cheese, grated
  • 4 twigs of vine tomatoes 4 slices Proscuitto
  • 4 x 175/6oz fillets monkfish - or similar firm white fish
  • 4 tsp Grey Poupon Dijon Mustard
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 150ml/1/4pt dry white wine
  •  50g/2oz unsalted butter
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley
  • Watercress for decoration

Method

  • First make the Dauphinoise. 
  • Place milk and cream in a pan and add garlic, bring to bubbling.
  • Add sliced potatoes to the pan and season.
  • Bring back to simmering, until potatoes are nearly tender.
  • Carefully spoon into a gratin dish, sprinkling over cheese in between layers, reserving some for the top.
  • Place in a pre-heated oven Gas 6 200C 400F for around 15 minutes, or until top is golden brown and potatoes are tender.
  • Place vine tomato twigs in another roasting pan, brush with olive oil, and season.
  •  Cook alongside the Dauphinoise. 
  • Lay out Proscuitto slices on worktop.
  • Spread monkfish fillets all over with Grey Poupon Dijon Mustard.
  • Place one on each slice of ham. 
  • Trim ham to fit the monkfish. 
  • Roll up to enclose.
  • Heat oil in a pan over medium heat.
  • Place wrapped monkfish in pan and cook for around 10 minutes, until ham is crisp and fish is just cooked.
  • Remove from pan and keep warm.
  • Add wine to pan and bring to bubbling with juices in the pan.
  • Add butter and stir to melt. 
  • Add parsley. 
  • Serve a portion of Dauphinoise on a plate with a twig of roasted vine tomatoes.
  • Perch a fish fillet on top, then pour over sauce. 
  • Decorate with watercress. 
  • Repeat with remaining ingredients.


Recipe and photo credit by- Dijon Poupon, the classic Dijon mustard

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Food Of Love....



Makes 8 servings

Ingredients

  • 275g/10oz caster sugar
  • 3 medium eggs
  • Zest and juice of 1 1/2 unwaxed lemons
  • 120mls/4floz extra virgin olive oil
  • 100ml/3 ½ floz milk 2
  • 75g/10oz plain flour,
  • sifted 1 level tbsp baking powder,
  • sifted 1 pack fondant icing Red food colouring
  •  Icing sugar for sifting 
  • over Fresh raspberries


Method

  • Heat the oven to 180C/350F Gas 5.
  • Whisk sugar and eggs together until fluffy and pale.
  • Add lemon zest and juice.
  • Stir in olive oil and milk.
  • Fold in the flour and baking powder.
  • Line the base of a deep, loose bottomed 24cm/10in with parchment paper.
  • Carefully pour mix into the pan and smooth over top.
  • Bake for around 45 minutes or until top is firm and a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  • Leave to cool in the tin, then turn out onto a wire rack.
  • For the decoration, roll out fondant icing thinly.
  •  Cut out hearts in various sizes.
  • Using a small, clean paintbrush or pastry brush, paint hearts with red colouring.

Reserve

  • Dust top of cake with icing sugar, then arrange red hearts on the top.
  • Serve with fresh raspberries, or for extra luxury, scoops of clotted cream.



Recipe and photo credits-  the Interprofessional Olive Oil from Spain

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Welcome To The Weekend Blog Hop ....

Hello and welcome to the weekend blog hop a time to find new blogs and new follower's.Link up your blogs,Twitter,Facebook,Google + page Linky Followers or Pinterest page...

Here are the rules....
Please only family friendly blogs only!!!

1.) Follow me clairejustineoxox in number 1 spot on Google friends connect.

2.) Follow Nekky from Reflexions in number 2 spot my co-host on Google friends connect.

3.) Visit and read some great blogs and follow ones you like.

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Seafood Broth...


Super-easy, fast and handy for freezing, too.
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 10 minutes
Servings: 1


Ingredients
  • 150g  diced mixed seafood - your choice but raw works best
  • 300ml fish stock
  • I onion (finely diced)
  • ½  leek (the green part, finely sliced)
  • 1 garlic clove (crushed)
  • 1 large carrot (peeled & finely diced)
  • 1 punnet of cherry tomatoes (chopped - tinned tomatoes also work well)
  • 50g peas
  • 1 tbsp rapeseed oil
  • A selection of chopped fresh herbs (choose from chives, chervil, dill and tarragon or even a bit of each)
Method
  • In a pot soften the onion, leek, garlic and carrot, before adding in the fish stock.
  • Bring the soup to the boil then add in the tomatoes. 
  • Simmer for about 2 - 3 minutes and then add in the fish.
  • Heat for another minute, and add in the peas and herbs just before you serve. 
  • A squeeze of lemon juice or a suggestion of Tabasco will add some extra zing.
  • Enjoy with some lovely tiger bread for a warm and hearty lunch.
Top tips 
  1. Throw in a few shell-on mussels at the end to really add the wow factor - kids will love opening them up!
  2. See what other ingredients are lurking in your fridge - vegetables like fennel, celery and peppers will also work well.
Recipe and photo credit by- Fish Is The Dish

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Traditional Fish Pie...


Preparation time: 25 minutes
Cooking time: 2 hours
Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6
Serves 4

Ingredients
  • 1.25kg potatoes, peeled
  • 100g butter
  • 1 egg yolk
  • Sea salt and freshly ground white pepper
  • 1 small onion, thickly sliced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Approx 550ml milk
  • 300ml double cream
  • 450g unskinned haddock fillets
  • 225g undyed smoked haddock fillets
  • 45g plain flour
  • 5 tbsp chopped flatleaf parsley
  • Pinch freshly grated nutmeg
Method
  • Place the potatoes in boiling water and boil for 15-20 minutes.
  • Drain, mash and add half the butter and the egg yolk.
  • Season with salt and freshly ground white pepper.
  • Add about 100ml milk until the mash is soft and spreadable.
  • Put the onion slices in a large pan with the bay leaf, 450ml of the milk, the cream, and the smoked and unsmoked haddock.
  • Bring just to the boil and simmer for 8 minutes.
  • Lift the fish out on to a plate and strain the milk and cream into a jug.
  • Break the fish into large flakes, checking for any bones. 
  • Place the fish into a shallow 1.75 itre ovenproof dish.
  • Melt the remaining butter in a pan, add the flour and cook for 1 minute.
  • Take the pan off the heat and gradually stir in the reserved milk and cream.
  • Return to the heat and bring slowly to the boil, stirring all the time.
  • Simmer gently for 10 minutes to cook out the flour.
  • Remove from the heat once more, stir in the parsley and season with nutmeg, salt and white pepper.
  • Pour the sauce over the fish and leave to cool.
  • Spoon the potato over the filling. Bake for 35-40 minutes, until piping hot and golden brown.
Recipe and photo credit by -   Fish Is The Dish

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