South African Chutney Chicken

On 1st April 2016, This was Dinner

I’m sometimes a little wary of using skin-on chicken thighs. Depending on how you cook it, you can end up with a chewy skin which is absolutely revolting. Not this recipe though, but do brown them first like we did.

Get set…

  • Preaheat the oven to 180°c (fan)
  • Trim some skin on- bone in chicken thighs
  • Chop an onion
  • Finely chop a garlic clove
  • Finely chop a red chilli
  • Get mayonnaise, mango chutney, Worcestershire sauce, oil & seasoning ready

Throw it together…

Heat some oil in a pan and brown the chicken for a couple of minutes each side. Do in batches. Transfer to a foil lines baking dish.

Heat more oil in the pan and cook the onion, garlic and chilli until softened. Stir in the mayo, Worcestershire sauce and chutney. Season.

Spoon the mixture over the chicken and roast in the oven for about 40 minutes.

Dish it up…

I cooked the remainder of some savoy cabbage to use it up. Oh and with chips! Come on! It’s Friday. Spoon the remaining sticky juices over.


Find the original here.

Quick Scaloppine with Roastini

On 29th June 2015, This was Dinner

This is a Nigella recipe from her ‘Kitchen’ book. I picked it as I really wanted to give the gnocchi roasting a go. There were two issues – Should I par boil mine ?(Nigella doesn’t but then I reckon she buys the finest quality and mine’s from Morrisons) and I’d ran out of olive oil!

I decided to par boil my gnocchi and sparingly use vegetable oil.

I used some pork chops I had in the freezer for this. According to Wikipedia:

Scaloppine is an Italian dish consisting of thinly sliced meat (most often veal, although chicken may also be used) that is dredged in wheat flour,sautéed, then heated and served with a tomato-, or wine-sauce; or piccata, which denotes a caper and lemon sauce.

Well I used pork and there was no sauce whatsoever so not definitively a scaloppine. I suppose that’s why Nigella calls hers ‘Speedy’.


  • Remove the bones from some pork chops.
  • Par boil some gnocchi
  • Get a mixture of spices ready*
  • Preheat the oven to 190ºc (fan)
  • Get gnocchi, plain flour, oil and seasoning ready


Cover the pork in cling film and bash until thin.

Pop the flour in a bag and add a pinch of your chosen spices. Get creative, I can’t remember what I used but there was definitely cayenne and paprika in there. Add a little salt and shake well.

Pop the pork inside the bag and shake to coat.

Pop the gnocchi in a baking tray and coat with oil and seasoning. Bake in the oven for about 25 minutes.

Heat some oil in a pan and cook the pork on each side. I did mine for about three minutes each side.

TWD_2906_ScaloppineServe with some peas.

When I do the roastini again I will definitely use olive oil and heat then baking tray first. I lost a few to the bottom of the pan.

* Nigella uses mixed spices in her recipe.

Sausages with Braised Cabbage

On 3rd & 4th April, This was Dinner

So today was a good spring clean day which included me photographing some shoes and bags for Ebay. This is a big day for me, I only get rid of crappy work shoes but after a point, space has become an issue and I’m saying goodbye to some shoes I’ve had ‘forever’!

I baked some bread then we made this for dinner.


  • Thinly slice an onion
  • Cut half a cabbage into 4 wedges
  • Prepare some chicken stock
  • Get sausages, oil, butter, caraway seeds, crème fraîche & seasoning ready.


Cook the sausages for about 10 minutes until browned. Remove from the pan.

Melt some butter and oil in the pan then add the onion. Season and cook until soft and golden.

Sprinkle in the caraway seeds and cook for two more minutes.

Add the cabbage wedges to the pan, pop the lid on and cook for five minutes.

Add the sausages back to the pan and cook for another 10 minutes until the cabbage is just right and the sausages are cooked through.

Gently stir in the crème fraîche along with some seasoning.

Serve with creamy mashed potato.


This recipe can be found on the BBC Good Food Website.

After a visit to the hairdressers on Saturday I spent the rest of the day baking. I ran out of steam and as neither of us wanted a takeaway we raided the fridge/freezer and ended up with Ham, Egg & Waffles. We had been picking at the baking all day anyway.

Tikka Fish Chapatis

On 2nd April 2015, This was Dinner

It’s hard to believe we are in April already. It doesn’t seem like that long ago we were wishing our lives away waiting for Walter to arrive at 8 weeks. He’s now a ‘big’ lad at 15 weeks old. He gets bigger by the day so I need to get my photographer hat on and gets some pics of him. Hopefully the weather will be nice this Easter weekend.

We are off to my Mum’s for a family get together and I have a serious weekend of baking my contributions whilst fitting in puppy walkings and a visit to the hairdressers. Then there’s a house spring clean. Is that possible with an excitable puppy around? I’ve written out a cooking and baking timetable so hopefully things will go well.

Back to the food…Do you find that you buy a jar of paste of some sort and then find that it sits in the fridge until you decide it needs throwing? No? Just me then? Well I decided that I would make my own tikka paste after looking it up online. Turns out I have ALL of the ingredients required.

I’d seen a recipe somewhere for fish tikka naan but then couldn’t find it. I had cod and chapatis in the freezer so this was my interpretation.


  • Finely slice a red onion
  • Finely slice some carrot
  • Cut some cod into bite sized pieces
  • Heat the oven to 190ºc (fan)
  • Grind up some coriander and cumin seeds (1tbsp each)
  • Get garlic powder (¾tbsp), paprika (1tbsp), garam masala (½tbsp), ground ginger (½tbsp) chilli powder (1tsp), turmeric (¼tsp), dried mint (½tbsp), salt (¼tsp), lemon, red wine vinegar, vegetable oil, yellow food colouring, yoghurt, chapatiz, rice & seasoning ready.


Mix of of the herbs and spices together along with a squeeze of  lemon, a good glug of red wine vinegar and a good glug of the oil. You want a nice paste that you can easily toss the fish in.

Toss the fish in the paste then give it another season.

Cook the rice.

Spread the fish on a baking tray and cook for about 12-15 minutes depending on the size of your fish pieces.

Pop the chapatis in the oven to warm

Serve with the rice, carrot and onion along with a dollop of natural yoghurt and a squeeze of lemon juice. Don’t forget your chapatis on the side.


Creamy Turkey & Broccoli Gnocchi

On 31st March & 1st April 2015, This was Dinner

Always on the search for a gnocchi dish I came across this recipe in my Frame by Frame: Quick and Easy cookbook I haven’t visited for a while.


  • Cut some broccoli into pieces
  • Toast some pine nuts
  • Finely slice a couple of leeks
  • Get turkey steaks, gnocchi, wholegrain mustard, crème fraîche, orange juice, butter, oil & seasoning ready


Cook the broccoli in boiling, salted water. Remove the broccoli and bring the water back up to the boil.

Heat some oil and butter in a pan and cook the leeks until softened and starting to brown.

Remove from the pan and pop to one side.

Season the turkey steaks and cook for 2 to 3 minutes each side until cooked through. Remove from the pan and cut into strips.

Cook the gnocchi in the boiling water then drain, reserving a little water.

Mix crème fraîche, mustard and orange juice.

Throw the gnocchi, leeks, broccoli and turkey into the biggest pan and add the crème fraîche mixture along with some seasoning and stir well.

Serve with a sprinkling of the pine nuts.


On Wednesday we were lazy and had a takeaway, kebab for me, burger for Mr S.

Sweet & Sour Chicken Hong Kong Style

On 29th & 30th March 2015, This was Dinner

I did go through a phase about 20 years ago where I would have the sweet and sour chicken option from the Chinese takeaway, you know the ones, in loads of batter with the bright orange sauce but then I discovered Deep Fried Crispy Shredded Chicken (or beef) and I was hooked.

I bought chicken instead of the pork that is in the Hairy Bikers (Mum’s Know Best) original recipe. This was purely because sweet and sour chicken would always be my personal choice.

Recipe involves waiting time.


  • Cut a couple of chicken breasts into peices
  • Get a chicken stock cube, white sugar, egg, cornflour, vegetable oil, tomato ketchup, red wine vinegar, a tin of pineapple chunks & seasoning ready


Mix the stock cube with a little water, about a tablespoon of the sugar and some seasoning. Cover and pop in the fridge.

After about half an hour, whisk the egg with about a tablespoon of the cornflour and add to the chicken.

Pop a pan on high and heat the oil then turn down.

Coat the chicken pieces in more cornflour and fry  (don’t overfill the pan) on all sides until done, about 7-10 minutes depending on their size.

In a small pan, pop the pineapple chunks and all of the juice in along with the ketchup and red wine vinegar. Heat through, adding a little cornflour mixed with water to thicken.

Pour over the chicken and serve with rice or chips, or whatever you damn well fancy.


I must admit, if I had read the recipe before buying my bits I would have added big chunky bits of onion and green pepper but as we had masses of chicken it didn’t hurt.

On Monday we went with a jacket potato with cheese & beans. Simple but always good. I always make sure I eat the crispy skin before I get too full if it’s a huge potato.

Butternut Chilli

On 28th March 2015, This was Dinner

We are in the midst of Meat Free Week. This is my contribution*. I’m sorry, I can’t do a full week. Last year I decided that we were going to do National Vegetarian week but we failed spectacularly with a weekday trip to the supermarket to make a mixed grill ;-/ Whoops. We do have a lot of meat free meals but I found a full week too hard.

The recipe this is based on can be found here on the BBC Good Food website. I had to adapt a little and there was no peeling with mine. I went a bit more rustic!


  • Chop a few shallots
  • Finely chop a couple of garlic cloves
  • Finely chop a chilli
  • Deseed and chop a butternut squash
  • Roughly chop some sun dried tomatoes
  • Get cherry tomatoes, pickled jalapeños. tin of black beans, vegetable stock pot, cayenne pepper, pitted green olives, dried oregano, a bay leaf, red wine, sour cream, oil & seasoning ready.


Heat some oil in a pan and add the shallots and garlic. Cook until softened.

Add the chilli, cayenne, oregano and bay leaf and stir for a minute. Pop the squash and olives in along with the red wine. Simmer for a few minutes then add the cherry tomatoes along with the stock pot and a cup of water.

Stir well, bring to the boil, reduce, cover and cook for half hour. Don’t forget to give it the odd stir.

Add the sun dried tomatoes and the jalapeños along with some seasoning. If it seems like it is drying out, add a bit more water. Stir it well then cover again and cook for 15 minutes.

Add the beans along with their liquid and cook for another 15-20 minutes.

Serve with a dollop of sour cream, we also made our own flat breads.


We all really enjoyed this. Lot’s of great flavours.

* and my vegetarian sister was coming (which is obviously the real reason)