Fancy roast potatoes? I always do and these are very fancy roast potatoes!

Preparation Time; 10 minutes

Cooking Time; 1 ½ hours

 

image008

You’ll need:

1.5kg Potatoes, medium sized, peeled

900g parsnips, medium sized, peeled

2 tbsp plain flour

1 tbsp fresh thyme, chopped, plus a few sprigs

6-8 tbsp rapeseed oil

12 shallots, peeled

200g pancetta, roughly chopped

6 whole bay leaves

Sea salt and black pepper

 

What to do:

 

Preheat oven to 200°C/Gas 6

 

Cut any large potatoes in half and all of the parsnips in half lengthways, cook the potatoes in boiling salted water for 8 minutes or until par-boiled.  Meanwhile cook the parsnips in the same way in another pan for 4 minutes.  Drain the potatoes well then return to the pan and cover, shake the pan to roughen the edges of the potatoes.

 

Drain the parsnips and toss them in the flour, chopped thyme and seasoning.

 

Pour the rapeseed oil into a large roasting tin and heat in the oven; you need around 1cm of oil in the tin.  Add the potatoes and turn them over in the oil using a slotted spoon. Roast uncovered for 15-20 minutes, remove the tin from the oven and turn the potatoes, add the parsnips and shallots and turn them in the oil too. Roast for a further 35-40 minutes then turn all of the vegetables again, add the pancetta.

 

Increase the heat to 220°C/Gas 7 for a further 15-20 minutes, adding the thyme sprigs and bay leaves for the final 10 minutes.  Sprinkle with a little sea salt and black pepper and serve immediately.

 

 

Recipe supplied by www.oleifera.co.uk

Check out yesterday’s post if you want to join in with my fun idea based on the “I’m a Celebrity” television programme.  I was asked by several bloggers for my own answers to the questions posed.

1.What one thing about being a parent makes you scream “Get me out of here!”

Right now, the squabbling about video games between my two boys.  I do have a very long list for this question.  I may blog it sometime.

2. What qualities would you bring to the jungle?

Humour.  Kindness to others.  My husband says to add my determination to get things done and my organisational skills.

3. How are you likely to annoy people in your were stuck with them for 3 weeks?

Being over-sensitive to criticism.  Biting my nails.  Moodiness. Snoring, grinding my teeth and talking in my sleep.  My husband says I would shout at people.

4. What is the worst thing you have ever eaten?

Spinach and Walnut soup at Cambridge University.

5. What  item would you smuggle into the jungle with you?

Laptop so I could blog all about it and keep in touch with loved ones

6. What is the most daring thing you have ever done?

Went to Cambridge University.  Left behind a legal career.  Lived in a camper van.  Walked on fire.  Posed nude-ish on my blog. Become a mother.

7. Who would you miss most if you went into the jungle with a bunch of strangers?

I will say my husband as he is currently steam-cleaning the floors so I am in a favourable mood towards him.

8. What celebrity alive or dead would you like to have with you in the jungle and why?

Freddie Mercury so he could sing and I am sure he would keep things very lively one way and another.

9. What would scare you about being in the jungle?

The bridge they have go over and the trials.  I find the trials utterly demeaning and would be most unlikely to even try them.

10. After leaving the jungle, you go to a luxury hotel. What would be the first thing you did on reaching your hotel?

Enjoy the solitude and then feel lonesome and phone home.  A long bubble bath too.

11. Who do you think should win the Jungle Crown this year?

David Emmanuel as he seems like a “thoroughly decent chap” from the Valleys.  I like how he sees through people and also sees the best in people.  I like his peace-making qualities.

12. Who is your least favourite celebrity in the jungle and why?

Lucy as I feel she is picking on Amy.  Get over it – younger, slimmer and prettier will always exist – it’s the nature of life.  Also it is important to remember we all make errors of judgement as young people and to be more forgiving.

13. Which celebrity has surprised you most and how?

David Emmanual.  I expected not to like him.  That working-class chip on my shoulder no doubt.  I think he is great.

 

OK, so I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here has hit our television screens again.

So I thought I would have a little fun with blogger friends old and new and start a new meme type thing. I will tag a few people, hope they join in and pass on the jungle baton to other bloggers.

It is very simple to do and the rules are as follows

1) Answer the 10 questions and consider the mission.
2) Tag a few bloggers to do the same
3) Come back to my original blog post and tell me you have done the questions and answers so I can take a look and promote your post.

 

1. What one thing about being a parent makes you scream “Get me out of here!”

2. What qualities would you bring to the jungle?

3. How are you likely to annoy people in your were stuck with them for 3 weeks?

4. What is the worst thing you have ever eaten?

5. What  item would you smuggle into the jungle with you?

6. What is the most daring thing you have ever done?

7. Who would you miss most if you went into the jungle with a bunch of strangers?

8. What celebrity alive or dead would you like to have with you in the jungle and why?

9. What would scare you about being in the jungle?

10. After leaving the jungle, you go to a luxury hotel. What would be the first thing you did on reaching your hotel?

11. Who do you think should win the Jungle Crown this year?

12. Who is your least favourite celebrity in the jungle and why?

13. Which celebrity has surprised you most and how?

 

Your final mission should you choose to accept it is to tell us why the blogger/s who you tag are stars.

Have another look at the guidelines above and get going to have some jungle fun!

I am tagging @AutismMumma @mummyglitzer @smilesandphotos @LJB41 @CupcakeMumma11 @InstinctiveMum @Tamsin_Tweets @goriami @ SarahMo3w @DownsSideUp @ Redpeffer @ knackeredhwife @ KimberleyJTaylor @MummyTries @ nicolacupcake @ Ojosworld @oliversmadhouse @soundinglike

 

Anyone should feel free to join and obviously if you can link back to this post so much the better.

 

 

Christmas reindeer cookies are a real treat over the festive season and easy to make.

Makes: approximately 20 biscuits

image002

 Ingredients

 For the biscuits

100g butter

175g caster sugar

2 happy eggs

2 happy egg yolks

50g ground almonds

240g plain flour

 

For the icing

120g butter

250g icing sugar

1-2 tbsp milk

Food colouring to suit

 

Method

Biscuits

In a bowl, mix the butter and sugar together with an electric blender, until they form a creamy paste. Add the happy eggs and happy egg yolks and mix, then fold in the almonds and flour with a wooden spoon or spatula until fully combined.

 

Press the mixture into a greased tray to a thickness of about ¼” (6mm). Place in a preheated oven at 180°C/350°F/Gas Mark 4 for 10-12 minutes.

 

The biscuit mixture is ready when it has just started to colour. Carefully turn out onto a sheet of baking parchment on a flat cool surface.

 

While still warm to touch, use a cookie cutter to press out the shapes but don’t try to lift them out until completely cooled, or they’ll break.

 

 

Icing

Mix the butter and icing sugar together in a bowl, adding the milk as needed to make a smooth paste.

It’s much easier if you warm the butter.

First, ice the biscuits all over with the plain icing, adding some edible glitter for a festive feel. Then add a little red food colouring to the remaining icing, spoon it into a piping bag and draw on his shiny red nose.

 

 

Will you have a got at the Christmas reindeer cookies?

How to make eggnog is a common question at Christmas and I have the answer.

In case you were wondering, I add rum to this recipe!

image006 (2)

 

Ingredients

 

6 happy eggs

60g caster sugar

600ml milk

1 tbsp vanilla extract

½ tsp grated nutmeg

150ml plain yogurt

Method

You will need a cooking thermometer for this recipe.

 

Don’t be scared of raw eggs in eggnog; we gently cook them in this recipe.

 

Place 4 happy eggs, 2 happy egg yolks, caster sugar and milk in a saucepan. Heat slowly whilst stirring continuously; bring the temperature up to 72°C then remove the saucepan from the heat and keep stirring until it has cooled to around 60°C, this will take about 5 minutes.

 

Once it is below 60°C, pour the mixture through a sieve to capture any overcooked lumps. Add the vanilla extract and the nutmeg, stir and refrigerate the mixture. Once cool, add the plain yogurt and gently whisk together for a delicious and refreshing eggnog.

 

You can add other flavours in place of the vanilla and nutmeg and/or use double cream in place of the yogurt.

 

Adults might want to add some rum or bourbon too for a grown up drink.

 

Mat’s top tip: Use double cream instead of yogurt if you’re adding alcohol.

If you like it put a pin on it!

How To Make Egg Nog

 

Did you already know how to make eggnog and will you give it a try?