Dining · Entertaining · Food · Health · Low Carb · Slimmingworld · Snacks · Weightwatchers

Spinach, Feta and Pinenut Lo-Dough Parcels

One for the vegetarians!

These delicious and incredibly healthy parcels made with the incredible Lo-Dough are a packed full of nutrients. Crispy on top with a lovely filling seasoned with nutmeg.

Pre heat oven to Gas 5, Electric 190, Fan 170

Ingredients

2 pieces of Lo-Dough halved

45 grams Feta cheese

15 gms Pine Nuts

1 chopped red onion

1 handful washed spinach

1 large egg

1/2 tsp nutmeg plus a pinch

5 gms fresh grated Parmesan

Spray oil

Method

In a non stick frying pan sauté the onion until soft. Stir in the spinach and keep stirring until wilted. Sprinkle in the 1/2 tsp nutmeg, let the pan cool slightly then add the feta, pine nuts and egg and stir thoroughly. Season with fresh ground salt and pepper

Brush the edges of the halved Lo-Dough with hot to warm water

Divide the mixture between the 4 halves of Lo-Dough. Fold and press to seal. Use a fork to press down around the edges. Spray each parcel with spray oil and then scatter the grated Parmesan and pinch of nutmeg evenly over the top.

Bake in oven for apx 15 mins until browning. Serve.

Each parcel is 103 calories

Carbs 5.9gms

Fat 4.9gms

Protein 6.3gms

2 Parcels on Slimming World are 1/2 hexa and 1/2 hexb plus 2 syns

Lo-Dough can be purchased here

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Dining · Entertaining · Food · Health · Slimmingworld · Weightwatchers

Red Onion and Cranberry Festive Relish

With the festive season approaching and lots of hidden syns and calories about I decided to have a go at making my own Festive relish. Laden with sugar, relishes can be very unhealthy and only a tablespoonful can set you back on your healthy eating journey!

My Red Onion and Cranberry Festive Relish is not syn free but it enables you to have a little bit more of what you fancy without feeling guilty! It’s a great accompaniment served hot or cold and will keep fresh in the fridge for apx 3 days once made. It goes well with honey roast hams, cheese, pork, beef and chicken so it’s very versatile.

Cooking time apx 20mins

Prep 10mins

Ingredients

2 thinly sliced red onions

25gns dried cranberries roughly chopped

1 tbsp Apple cider vinegar ( I used Willy Chases Apple Cider Vinegar with the Mother)

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

2 whole cloves

4 tbsp sweetener

Pinch of dried chilli flakes

Pinch of salt

Butter Frylight

4 tbsp water

Method

Spray a non stick frying pan with butter frylight , add onions and cranberries and gently fry on a medium to low heat for 5 mins stirring all the time. Add the remaining ingredients and continue to cook until the onions are soft and the cranberries are reconstituted and soft – apx another 10 mins. Remove cloves and place in a dish to cook. Cover and keep in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Syns 6 – makes apx 12 tablespoonfuls making it just half a syn per tbsp

Nutritional info

170 cals (14.2 cals per tbsp)

Carbs 41gms (3.4 per tbsp)

Fat 3gms (.25 per tbsp)

Protein 2 gms (.17per tbsp)

Cake · Cakes · Dining · Entertaining · Food · Gluten free · Low Carb · Recipes · Slimmingworld

Lo-Dough Dark Sweet Cherry Bakewell Pudding

This new Lo-Dough recipe was borne after gaining inspiration from other healthy Bakewell recipes. All of the recipes I came across, even though healthy contained pastry and we all know pastry is not just heavy on carbs and fats but it vastly increases the calorific content of an otherwise healthy and tasty dessert.

The other thing I noted was we all love the jammy base and many of the recipes I came across used raspberries but for me a bakewell is best with cherries – lots of them so I have created a denser sweeter cherry base using dark sweet defrosted frozen cherries mixed with a little black cherry jam to retain the authentic taste of Cherry Bakewell but with a pudding consistency. For sweetener I use Sukrin Gold. It’s a natural alternative to brown sugar. It can be found on Amazon and at Holland and Barrett- it’s a great flavour and no chemical aftertaste and perfect for baking.

Pre heat oven to Gas 5, electric 190, fan 170

You will need

1 x 20cm deep pie dish

Ingredients

1 piece of Lo-Dough

200gms defrosted frozen dark sweet cherries roughly chopped and lightly mashed

4 tbsp Black Cherry conserve

50gms ground almonds

50gms dried polenta (corn meal)

50gms sukrin gold or similar sweetener

2 large eggs beaten

100gms fat free natural yoghurt

1/2 tsp almond essence

1tbsp flaked almonds

6 halved glacé cherries (optional)

Press Lo-Dough into the baking dish. I used three pickle jars to weight it down and left it in the fridge overnight covered with tin foil. If you don’t have the time to do this just press it into the dish, place something washed clean out of your kitchen cupboard on top to hold it down whilst you put the filling inside.

In a dry frying pan heat the ground almonds over a medium heat until starting to turn golden. Pour into a large bowl. When cooled slightly add the Polenta, baking powder and sweetener and mix.

In a separate bowl mix the yoghurt and almond essence with the beaten eggs

In another bowl mash the cherries and conserve together and spread over the bottom of the Lo-Dough removing the weighted object.

Pour the egg mixture into the polenta mixture and stir together briefly until mixed evenly.

Pour this over the cherries and spread to the edge

Scatter the flakes almonds evenly

Decorate with glacé cherries marking out the portions (10)

Place on a baking tray in the centre of the oven for apx 40min until risen and a pale golden colour. It will feel springy to the touch in the middle, remember this is a Pudding not a cake.

Cool before serving

Serves 10

106 cals portion

Protein 3.8 gms

Carbs 15.4 gms

Fat 5 gms

6 syns per portion – check syn values to protect your weight loss

Serve with Greek yoghurt or a light spray cream

Entertaining · Food · Food hampers · Hampers

Prestige Hampers UK – A Perfect Gift

Absolutely over the moon with this gorgeous hamper sent to me by Prestige Hampers

A delightful compact wicker hamper hiding a Treasure Trove of Christmas goodies perfect as a gift or something indulgent for yourself during the festive season!

Prestige Hampers UK have a huge array of Hampers and really do cover a broad spectrum of prices to suit everyone

Opening this little secret box was a huge delight and you have to remove the contents one by one to reveal layers and layers of lovely contents

I was so delighted and surprised at how much this compact hamper perfect for posting contained

Find the perfect Christmas hamper for you or someone special here

You won’t be disappointed!

My lovely wicker hamper contained

The Belgian Marc de Champagne Fancy Truffles

Belgian Chocolate Thins – Caramel

Founders Stone Lions Reach Merlot

Founders Stone Ocean Break White Zinfandel

Founders Stone The Homestead Pinot Grigio

London Tea

Yorkshire Natural Sea Salt Luxury Handcooked Crisps

Farmhouse Biscuits Savoury Pumpkin Seed and Cranberry Biscuits for Cheese

Mackays Dundee Orange Marmalade

Mackays Scottish Strawberry Preserve

Matthew Walker Luxury Christmas Pudding

Ooh Chocolata Blond Collection Creamy White Chocolate with Crunchy Honeycomb Bites

Delightful! A huge thankyou to Prestige Hampers !

Dining · Entertaining · Food · Restaurants

A Welcome arrival to Skipton!

Having seen all the work going on recently in Skipton Town Hall I was intrigued to know why a restaurant chain such as Wildwood would want to lay its roots down in Skipton and wanted to delve further. The Wildwood casual dining restaurant chain is owned by the restaurant group Tasty PLC who also own the Dim T brand

The Town Hall next door to the new restaurant was originally built in 1862 on the site of the former vicarage of the Holy Trinity Church. The building Wildwood now occupies was originally a commercial building attached to the Town Hall. Wildwood enjoy bring beautiful buildings back to life, respecting the local history and environment and retaining many original features. They have sympathetically retained the internal connection to the Town Hall with attractive large glass windows and a second entrance.

The Wildwood chain consists of an impressive portfolio of restaurants around the country, some of which boast their own cinemas which can be privately hired for a very reasonable rate . The Skipton based pizza, pasta and grill restaurant doesn’t have its own cinema unlike some but does consist of party space, outside seating and free wi-fi . Opening hours are 11.30-11pm Mon to Sat and 11.30-10.30 Sunday. Light, bright and spacious with plenty of tables across three rooms Wildwood brings something different to the centre of Skipton. It’s a great venue for informal business meetings, lunch or dinner with friends and family at very reasonable prices. Whether it be snacks, cocktails or celebrations Wildwood is a great central venue for all and includes disabled access.

So enough of the background, what’s it actually like? Is the food any good? Is the service up to scratch? Does it enhance the already huge selection of eateries in Skipton with stiff competition directly across the road ?

Ok first impressions. We were shown to a table firmly tucked against the wall behind a door. Not liking to feel confined I asked if they had another table. We were 20 mins early and were very kindly offered another table in the adjoining room which we chose. After being seated we waited about five minutes before our order was taken. I couldn’t resist the Passionfruit Bellini and Ken ordered a cider. We placed our order for food having previously studied the menu choosing Garlic and Mozzarella Bread followed by Baked mushrooms with melted Gorgonzola cheese, spinach, walnuts and toasted sourdough, and Garlic tiger prawns with garlic butter, chilli, lemon juice and coriander on toasted sourdough for starters

Amazing! If we closed our eyes we could imagine enjoying the same experience on a warm summer evening in one of the Mediterranean countries underneath a grape pergola. The starters were rustic, yet contemporary, very fresh, delicious and hot. If you wanted to order just one thing from the starter menu ( and you were having a night off the diet plan) then the very attractive looking Garlic and Mozzarella bread with caramelised onions for £4.50 is superb!

After finishing our starters we were intrigued to discover if the mains would be of the same high quality. Our main courses didn’t come immediately, We were left a reasonable amount of time to digest our starters before enjoying more delicious food which was exactly the same, delicious, hot, rustic, consistent quality throughout! We were delighted.

My Crispy Baked sea bass fillets with spinach, pesto, green beans, peas, onions, courgettes and cherry tomatoes was served with piping hot gratinated potatoes not too heavy on the cream or cheese and was superb!

Ken was over the moon with his choice of main – A beautifully cooked quality piece of chargrilled sirloin steak just how he likes it, served with crispy French fries, rocket and peppercorn sauce. He couldn’t stop saying how good it was

The portion sizes are ample, just right and extremely good value for money. We had very little room left but decided to share a dessert and coffee to get the full experience and opted for a Banoffee Sundae – consisting of Bananas, toffee sauce, vanilla ice cream, fresh cream and digestive biscuits- of course with two spoons – accompanied by two Americanos. Again, delicious but I was full – two words from me ‘I’m full’ and the sundae disappeared from the centre of the table into Ken’s hands where promptly he demolished the lot!

With the Festive season fastly approaching an impressive Christmas menu has just been published, for just £19.95 you can enjoy a 3 course meal or for just £24.95 add an extra course of nibbles and Prosecco! Early Bird discounts are also available. This is a fantastic place for your Christmas office lunch or dinner!

To sum up, Wildwood has its identity firmly established as a good quality, relaxed, friendly eatery, well occupied even on a deserted Sunday evening in Skipton. It’s great value for money and we will definitely be going back again! Welcome to Skipton Wildwood!

You can reserve a table at any of their restaurants easily here

Entertaining · Food · Recipes · Slimmingworld · Weightwatchers

Cobblestone Beef

It’s the time of year we need warm comforting food! The time when we crave something traditional, filling, it still on plan!

This pie was inspired by my roots. I was brought up in Lancashire on a cobbled street. We used to sit and pick the tar out from between the cobbles and play with it on a hot day! The crisp roasted potatoes sitting on top of a traditional type stew remind me of those cobblestones hence the name!

It’s easy and simple to make – I love simple recipes that hit the spot and this doesn’t disappoint, having made this over and over again!

To make this you will need a large baking dish preferably square with no lid

Ingredients

1 500gm pack less than 5% fat minced Beef

1 onion peeled and diced

4 carrots peeled and diced

1/3 medium swede peeled and diced

1 handful of frozen garden peas

Dash Worcestershire sauce

1 tsp mustard powder

2 pinches dried thyme

1 pt stock made with 3 Beef Oxos

Peeled and halved Kind Edward or Maria Piper potatoes ( enough to cover the surface area of the baking dish you are using

Butter Frylight

Seasoning to taste

Method

Parboil potatoes in salted water for 5 mins , drain and shake vigorously until fluffed up, then set aside

In a large pan sauté the onion, carrot and swede until glazed.

Add the thyme and cook for further two minutes

Add minced beef and keep stirring until browned

Add mustard powder and Worcestershire sauce and stir

Add stock and peas

Bring to boil then reduce and simmer for five mins. Season to taste.

Transfer the contents of the pan to your baking dish spreading evenly.

Place the fluffed potatoes on top – rounded side up. Arrange them like cobblestones.

Spray very generously with butter frylight and place in the top of a hot oven – Gas 7, spray with frylight every 15 mins until golden and crispy. This should take apx 45 mins to 1 hour

This is a great way of using leftover vegetables, just add to the stew before adding the potatoes.

Entertaining · Flowers · Gifts · Jewellery, watches, lifestyle,

Prestige Flowers – A Floral Celebration!

After a girly shopping day in Harrogate with my friend I was delighted to arrive home to these stunning flowers by Prestige Flowers UK to review. Having been chosen previously to review their flowers my expectations were high and they haven’t disappointed me at all!

Prestige Flowers arrive via courier in an attractive sturdy box with a carrying handle built into the top.

Opening and unpacked the flowers is easy. Just lift the lid and lift the flowers using their wrapping. The flowers are gift wrapped and tied with a lovely rustic bow

Also inside the box was a vase – perfect for the size of bouquet and the flowers fit in perfectly. There is also a gift bag which the flowers stand inside and matches the wrapping.

I filled the base with water and used the flower food that was included, snipped the tie, removed the paper and cut the bands securing the flowers. I then just simply – and no more than that placed the flowers in the base and they fell into the most beautiful arrangement. Bright cheery perfectly fresh flowers to brighten up the fast approaching cold Autumn days! I wholeheartedly encourage you to take a peek at their gorgeous Birthday Flowers here – they truly are a special gift for that important person!