Probably…the easiest bread recipe ever!

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Irish Soda Bread – Darina Allan recipe

This has to be the easiest bread recipe you will find. No kneading, no rising and to be honest not even very much mixing! Myself and my daughters have made this four times this week already. 45 minutes from start to mouth 🙂

Ingredients:

1lb of white flour or half and half white and wholemeal
1tsp bicarbonate of soda
1/2 a tsp of salt
14 fluid ounces of butter milk

Method:

Mix dry ingredients in a large bowl

Pre heat oven to 200c or 450f

Make a well in the centre and gradually add the butter milk until everything is combined but not too sticky ( you may not need all the milk )

Turn out onto a floured baking pan and shape into a circle. Don’t knead just shape!

Flatten and with a sharp knife make a cross in the bread.

Apparently the old Irish tradition is to release the fairies from the bread by pricking each of the four corners with a knife. Otherwise the fairies will jinx your bread 🙂 the kids will love this!

Then splash some buttermilk on top and bake for approx 30mins or until hollow.

Cover with a clean tea towel until cool and enjoy!

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Probably…the easiest bread recipe ever!

image

Irish Soda Bread – Darina Allan recipe

This has to be the easiest bread recipe you will find. No kneading, no rising and to be honest not even very much mixing! Myself and my daughters have made this four timed this week already. 45 minutes from start to mouth 🙂

Ingredients:

1lb of white flour or half and half white and wholemeal
1tsp bicarbonate of soda
1/2 a tsp of salt
14 fluid ounces of butter milk

Method:

Mix dry ingredients in a large bowl

Pre heat oven to 200c or 450f

Make a well in the centre and gradually add the butter milk until everything is combined but not too sticky ( you may not need all the milk )

Turn out onto a floured baking pan and shape into a circle. Don’t knead just shape!

Flatten and with a sharp knife make a cross in the bread.

Apparently the old Irish tradition is to release the fairies from the bread by pricking each of the four corners with a knife. Otherwise the fairies will jinx your bread 🙂 the kids will love this!

Then splash some buttermilk on top and bake for approx 30mins or until hollow.

Cover with a clean tea towel until cool and enjoy!

Jens Thai Red

As I am weight watching at the moment I have had to tweak s few of my favourite curries (not much). I wasn’t sure about this one with the addition of squash but it turned out very nice!

Serves Six

Ingredients:
700gr of diced chicken breast (no skin)
Half a 200gr jar of Thai red curry paste
1 can of low fat coconut milk
1 red pepper deseeded and diced
1/4 of a large butter nut squash diced
1 thumb sized piece of ginger finely chopped

Method:

To avoid the use of any additional oil I have reversed the cooking of this a little. Where I normally fry off the chicken and veg and then add paste and coconut milk I have brought the coconut milk and paste to a simmer first. About 3 minutes should do it.

Then add your chicken and simmer for about 10 mins until chicken is cooked through.

Add veg and ginger and simmer for a further twenty mins until the sauce has reduced slightly.

Serve with rice.

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Don’t eat anything with ingredients you wouldn’t find in your cupboard!

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I have gone crazy this week baking bread… Many different recipes, rye, bagels, standard white, white with wholemeal, rye with sunflower and pumpkin seeds, rye with honey and spelt!! It has gone down a treat in the house with everybody. Kids take it to school to show it off to their friends!

I sat down last night and decided to read the ingredients in a standard white sliced loaf, to say I was shocked is an understatement!

I really must be very naive if I have never noticed how many additives and preservatives are in the humble sliced pan. The one I have lived on most of my life, the one I toasted for children when they were learning to eat solids…thinking it was healthy. I mean what are mono diglycerides anyway??

Don’t get me wrong I am not a health freak and I don’t normally tend to get on my soap box about things like this but after finding that bread only needs three or four ingredients that are cheap and healthy and easy to source as well as the bread being easy to produce I can’t help but wonder why there isn’t more emphasis put on baking your own.

I guess mass produced chemical laden  bread is a huge industry and a great money spinner for both company and government. Sad really….

Anyway I just wanted to at least try and make even one person aware of how wonderful and easy it is to produce your own bread and know exactly what your feeding your family. There will definitely never be another shop bought loaf in my home that’s for sure!

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Feeling very Artisan – White Crusty Dinner Rolls

OK so they aren’t the most amazing of artisan breads but for my first step into the exciting world of bread making I think its a fairly good step 🙂

Unfortunately I cannot take credit for this wonderful recipe that must go to the goddess of all things baked Ms. Nigella Lawson.

I also have to add that it is true what they say…nothing and I mean nothing beats the aroma of freshly baked bread in your home. 🙂 I hope you guys try these they are amazingly easy…I just wish I had found the recipe much sooner.

Ingredients
500gr of plain flour (some extra may be required)
3 teaspoons of fast acting yeast
1/2 a teaspoon of salt
1tablespoon of caster sugar
375mls of milk (I used low fat)
25gr butter.
Egg wash consisting of a beaten egg and a drop of milk.

Method
Put the flour, yeast, sugar and salt into a bowl.
Put milk and butter into a pan on a low heat until butter starts to melt.
Mix the wet into the dry ingredients and mix with a wooden spoon until you have a rough dough.

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At this stage you may need to add a little flour if it is too wet or a drop of milk if too dry.
Mix with a dough hook attachment for about 5 minutes until smooth.

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Place in a greased bowl covered in clingfilm somewhere warm to rise for an hour.

At this point it should have doubled in size.

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Use your fist to punch out the air (very gratifying 🙂 )

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Turn out onto a floured surface.

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Need for a minute to refresh the dough.
Line a baking tray with greased parchment. Start to tear of balls of dough somewhere between the size of a walnut and golf ball. The recipe says you should get thirty balls but I only got about 20 as I made them a bit bigger.

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Leave about a quarter inch gap between them and cover with a tea towel for half an hour.

Preheat your oven to 220.

After a half hour coat with egg wash. They should be almost touching so don’t worry

Place them in the oven for 15 mins.

Et Voila

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A Healthier Berry Muffin

No butter, no oil and no sugar….but yes they are tasty! I love to bake and after watching the first episode of “The Great Irish Bake Off” on Wednesday I was seriously craving some kitchen time. As I am trying to lose this darn baby weight and get out of my maternity jeans a full on chocolate cake had to be a big no no so I came up with these 🙂

Preheat your oven to 170.
Spray a 12 piece muffin tray with frylite/Pam spray. (I used muffin cases and forgot to spray them so I am highlighting this point as mine stuck to the cases)

Ingredients:

200gr self raising flour
2 eggs
150gr of berries – I used raspberries and blackberries.
Approx half a cup of sweetner
165gr pot of fat free vanilla yogurt (I used mullerlight vanilla with choc sprinkles)
Teaspoon of cinnamon – optional
Splash of water if required.

Method:
Sift flour and cinnamon into a bowel.
Mix yogurt, eggs and sweetener in another bowel.
Add to flour.
Mix in berries and add a splash of water if its needed to loosen the batter slightly.

Spoon into muffin pan and bake for 15-20min or until golden and a fork comes out clean.

Enjoy!

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Lean Mean Green Breakfast Drink

So I figured I should really start using the blender that has been sitting in the press for about a year untouched…yes I said a year!!

I am trying to eat more healthy (in case you hadn’t noticed! )

I invented this juice/smoothie this morning and it didn’t kill me to drink it!

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Ingredients:

Packed cup of spinach
1/4 of a cucumber cut into bitesize pieces
Handful of blackberries
Tablespoon of natural yogurt
Water
Sprinkle of splenda – optional/to taste

Method:

Whizz the spinach with water until smooth
Add other ingredients and blend until it reaches the consistency you like
Pour into a tall glass and add s couple of ice cubes.

Looks gross but doesn’t taste as bad 🙂
Great way of getting some goodness