Tuesday, 20 August 2013

delicious bran muffins (Low GI)

In the words of Jamiroquai I'm going deeper underground.... yes the bags are packed, pressies wrapped, snacks prepared, camera's charged, last bump pics taken and two days till we meet our second little princess.
It's a new adventure and I'm certainly ready for the ride.  Her soon to be big sister, may at times think her world is being turned upside down but she will soon realise a bond and relationship larger than life.  A new little being who is about to become her best friend for life, and its that, that pleases me most.
It's no surprise Ginger Fig will be a little quite over the next few months as we embark on a few sleepless nights.  It got me thinking about which recipe to share with you, one of my favourites and one I simply can't live without - and it's these delightful bran muffins, simple to make, fluffy and soft, and ever so healthy. 
This is the only bran muffin recipe you will ever need, you could live solely on these.  They are very good at lowering cholesterol and being low GI release energy slowly helping to lower sugar levels and more - thanks to the 3 cups of oats.

Light and fluffy and not to mention super healthy, great for the whole family.  They also freeze very well.


Makes 14 big muffins or (24 smaller muffins)
You will need:
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 4 Tbs oil
  • 3 cups oats
  • 1 1/2 cup cake flour
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 cups low fat milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 Tbs bicarb of soda
  • 1 grated apple
  • 1 cup sultanas
1) Mix all the dry ingredients together.  Add the milk, eggs, oil and essence together with the sultanas and grated apple mix well and leave in the fridge overnight or for a few hours.
2) Grease a muffin tray and bake at 180 preheated oven for 20 mins or till golden.

Monday, 19 August 2013

iced jasmine & elderflower tea

This has got to be one of the most refreshing drinks I've tasted in a long time, well in the non alcoholic department at least.  It would be hard to compete with my white peach sangria which I have been meaning to blog about for ages and will get round to it someday I promise.
Here, the dash of elderflower cordial adds that little kick of deliciousness to the already very aromatic jasmine tea.  These two flavours are made for each other and I would encourage you make a batch and keep it in the fridge, serve it with lunch or even an afternoon snack in the garden.
I used flowering jasmine pearls, but you could use any jasmine flavour tea be it a bag or leaves.



You will need:
  • 1 flowering jasmine tea pearl (or 1 jasmine flavoured tea bag)
  • a dash of elderflower cordial
  • a few blocks of ice

1) Make the tea as you would normally, allow to cool slightly.  Pour a dash of elderflower cordial in each glass or in the tea pot (to taste) depends how sweet you like it.  Pour the tea over ice into the individual glasses.

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

three summer salads with feta

What's not to love about summer and alfresco dining... crisp fresh ingredients tossed together with crumbs of feta, dressed with fresh lemon and olive oil, served and enjoyed outdoors - this for me is summer on a plate.  These three ideas are all extremely simple to prepare and very pretty to eat.  As they all use a hint of feta, I wouldn't necessarily serve them together but rather mix and match them to different meals or BBQ's. 
I couldn't resist dressing the table with a few hand picked herbal blooms straight from the garden, a little bouquet of Lavender, Chamomile, and Pea shoots add a delicate touch to your table.

Roasted sweet potato, beetroot and feta salad


  • Serves 2/4
  • 2 large sweet potatoes, sliced or cubed
  • 5 medium sized roasted beetroots
  • 1/2 slab of feta
  • lettuce leaves
1) Place sweet potatoes in a roasting dish, drizzle with olive oil and roast in a preheated oven of 180 degrees for 20 minutes or until crispy but still soft.  If your beetroots are fresh, cover each one with foil and place in the oven together with the sweet potatoes but leave in for at least an hour till soft, remove from foil and peel the skin off.  Alternatively use pre-packed already cooked beets.
2) Toss all together with crumbed feta, place on the lettuce leaves and drizzle with olive oil and little balsamic vinegar.


Courgette, mint, chilli and feta salad

  • Serves 2/4
  • 3 raw courgettes, peeled length ways with a peeler
  • 1/2 medium heat red chilli, finely chopped
  • 1/4 slab of feta, crumbed
  • few sprigs of mint
1) Toss all together in a bowl and dress with olive oil and fresh lemon juice.  Note this is best when the courgettes have been marinated in the dressing for at least half an hour, they go all soft but still maintain a slight crunch.

Rosemary roasted butternut and feta salad

  • Serves 2/4
  • 1 butternut, peeled and sliced into chunks
  • few sprigs of rosemary
  • 1/2 slab of feta, crumbed
  • 1 tsp chicken spice
1) Sprinkle the chicken spice over the butternut together with the sprigs of fresh rosemary, roast in preheated oven of 180 degrees for 20 mins.
2) Toss together with the feta and dress with olive oil.

Monday, 1 July 2013

butternut, cauliflower & chickpea curry

Honestly this came about from being all I could find in the fridge and pantry.  I always have a tin of chickpeas handy for whatever reason be it salads, houmous or stews and I had a very big butternut begging to be chopped.  I'd also noticed half a cauliflower in the fridge, who knows how long it had been there and the first thing that came to mind was a mild coconuty curry.
There used to be quite a famous advert in South Africa for crackers where the toppings started out very fancy e.g. smoked salmon and cream cheese, then just cream cheese and by the end of the month there was nothing but the plain cracker, they referred to it as the end of the month salticrax.
This dish is my end of the month curry for your lovie ;)

Serves 4
You'll need:
  • 1/2 a butternut, diced
  • 1/2 a cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 1 tin of chickpeas
  • 1 red onion
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 tin of tomatoes
  • 1/2 tin of coconut milk
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • juice from half a lemon
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • plain yoghurt to serve
1) Fry the onion in a pan.  Add the spices and all the vegetables.  Mix well to ensure the spices coat all the veggies
2) Add the coconut milk and tinned tomatoes.  Season with salt and pepper and simmer for approx. 20mins or till tender.
3) Serve with a dollop of plain yoghurt and toasted pita breads or naan.

Wednesday, 26 June 2013

watermelon and feta

Something refreshing for dare I say it these slightly warmer days.  This is in essence the Greeks equivalent to British strawberries and cream.  A true staple in Greece where restaurant owners may even bring you a plate as a post-meal refresher - on the house.  It also goes down well in the afternoon when everyone wakes from their siesta about to head down to the beach.  Back in the UK I love it any place, any time.
The combination of feta and watermelon may sound strange to those who haven't tried it but trust me it works very well.  It's a sweet and salty explosion of flavours, you will never be able to eat watermelon without feta ever again.  A few sprigs of mint would also go down well with this.

You will need:
  • watermelon
  • good quality feta (preferably cows milk feta not goats milk)
1) Slice some cold watermelon and serve with slices of good quality feta.

Monday, 24 June 2013

raspberry, coconut and honey lassi



There is not much to say about this drink other than it is every so simple, ever so refreshing and ever so good for you.  One small sip and you'll find yourself drifting off to another land, a land of suntan oil, mosquitos and peace, yes somewhere exotic, somewhere we call a holiday!
Serves 2-4
You'll need:
  • 1 punnet of raspberries
  • 1 Tbs honey
  • 1/2 can of coconut milk
  • crushed ice

1) Put raspberries, honey and coconut milk in a blender and blend till smooth.  Serve over crushed ice.

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

We're thrilled with recent coverage in Crumbs Magazine

Thank you Crumbs for a great feature in this month's issue.   For those who don't know Crumbs Magazine has just been voted best Food Magazine in the Guild of food writers awards, a very big congrats to you all.
We recently hosted a Vintage Blossom Tea Party in the Garden, Crumbs came along and this is what they had to say.
P.S. You have to try the simple Swiss roll with strawberries and rose cream recipe listed in the feature!
Read feature here: