Category: things we eat

The Breakfast Love Affair Continues – Scrambled Egg and Quorn Sausage Pittas

Recently Gav and I have been trying to watch what we are eating. A big holiday is on the horizon, one where swimsuits will be needed, so an attempt at a bit of weight loss is a must. When we try to cut back we often substitute bread with pitta bread. Not sure if they are less calories but somehow feel better for you. Pittas also make me want tons of salad to stuff them with so that’s healthy right?

Anyway the reason I’m mentioning the pittas is because when I came to make breakfast the other day there was no bread. But no worries I used the pittas instead and they worked out great.

Also new to us were the Quorn sausage patties. They worked great too with the scramble and just a few sliced tomatoes.

Overall the lack of bread made no difference and we ended up with a new go to breakfast concoction. Perfect!



The Breakfast Love Affair Continues – Banana and Pineapple Pancakes

When I am not consciously ‘watching my weight’ I’ll choose a chocolate bar over a slice of melon. But truth be told I love fruit! Melon, mangoes, nectarines, tangerines….. You get the picture. The other week I was trying to be good and bought a pineapple. It sat in the fridge, neglected as I plowed through Easter Eggs…… But then when my niece stayed over and we were pondering what to make for breakfast I remembered the pineapple and a perfect pancake was born. I used this recipe.

If I were making these again I would chop my fruit much smaller because as you can see the batter was very bobbly and I had to keep moving the pancakes around in the pan to ensure they were cooked through.

They were very good indeed and the cinnamon just lifts all the fruity flavours to perfection.

I get irony behind buying a pineapple to be healthy and then making pancakes from it but at least I was trying……


30 Vegetarian Pizza – A Review and a Bonus Pizza

Wow. This project was a long time in completing!

It all began on the 8 March 2014. And really? I can’t believe almost three years have gone by since then. But time flies. You can read my orignal post here.

Looking back at what I wrote in that post I have to say first and foremost I pretty much failed in this project. I wanted to try different flours and cheeses and toppings. But it proved harder than I thought to sway Gav from his tried and tested dough recipe and the toppings were a challenge too. All that said I need to make it clear that I wasn’t doing this whole thing as just something to write about here. I had hoped to push our culinary skills but when it came down to is he cooked the pizza, I photographed and then we ate them for dinner on Saturday nights. On only one occasion did I get in the kitchen and make three at once. And I only did that because it was a bright summer day when Gav was off walking and I felt like trying out some toppings I knew he wouldn’t like. (Yes, the beetroot one! Ha.) Basically it was real life with its real challenges.

But enough of the negative, what about the positives? We have discovered several new favourite toppings.

This one from Cookie and Kate was my number one.

Followed closely by Quorn ham and pineapple.

Such a great combination.

I also loved the beetroot one….

That had Feta cheese on it too which I think worked so well with the sweet beetroot.

Then there was the artichoke and sweetcorn.

With a few black olives and red onion throw into the mix too.

And finally the one in the photo at the top of this post. It was number thirty one because I miscounted! Of course best is last right? This was roasted vegetable. Onions, courgettes, red pepper and tomatoes roasted in the oven for about 30 minutes and added to the pizza before cooking. It was so good.

So there we have it a few lessons learned and a few new combination of flavours, not bad really for three years in the making!




The Breakfast Love Affair Continues – Apricot And Almond Bread French Toast

As promised here is the breakfast delight I made with the Apricot and Almond loaf.

Although there is nothing spectacular about this breakfast it felt spectacular and it’s interesting to remember that the addition of a couple of ingredients elevates food to another level. So note to self Mel!

It was my usual French toast/eggy bread mixture which is gently beaten egg with seasoning of salt and pepper – even if it’s going to be a sweet offering I always add pepper to the egg mix. Lightly fry in melted butter for a couple of minutes or until the raw eggy-ness is crisp and golden brown then flip over and do the same on the other side.

Serve immediately on a warm plate and enjoy.

I added a chopped banana to mine and a drizzle of maple syrup. I’d like to try it with fresh apricots too sometime. The flavours of the bread seemed to come out more after the cooking process also something to remember. Enjoyed this one and will be trying it again.


Homemade bread – apricot and almond loaf

Our bread maker is one of those with a compartment at the top of the machine where you put additional ingredients that you don’t want to get pulverised in the first knead. It’s quite clever as it has a hatch which opens with a release switch and allows the ingredients to be added at the correct time in the process.

Sounds great. As long as it works…..

I think because our bread maker is a few years old now the catch isn’t quite as robust as it was and it’s a bit of a performance loading up the top compartment because you have to hold hatch door in place from underneath to stop it opening. Then lower the lid of the machine and very gently switch it on. Hmm… like I say a little bit of a performance but worth I think for some of the delicious extra elements you can add into a loaf this way.

The one above has all chopped dried apricots, ground almonds (you add those to the main mix) and slivered almonds. Yum!

It was very tasty and although not savoury we ate it up no problem. I wanted to try it with cheese but I was inspired by the flavours in the loaf to use it as the base of a breakfast recipe.

Anyway, one more crossed off in the book and I’ll share that breakfast recipe soon.


The other Gingerbread House

On Christmas Eve Gav and I decorated our own gingerbread house. There was one left over so we took up the challenge. Above is one of the lovely little elements that Gav made. A pile of snowballs! Love it.

We enjoyed ourselves and it was a very festive thing to do on Christmas Eve.

The picket fence was all Gav’s too have to admit between him getting a bit bored of ‘gluing’ them together and us eating the Matchmakers on the front of the house had a finished fence.

I made a few windows by laying down the pattern on a piece of greasproof paper and sticking them in place once set.

I also came up with a sleigh full of logs….

That’s a vegetarian red liquorice rope to pull the sleigh. In fact all our sweets were suitable for us to eat.

And a snow angel….

All in all a truly lovely way to spend an afternoon. I’m sure I said that I never wanted to make any gingerbread ever, ever again after baking six houses but after some time has passed I’m actually looking forward to this years house decorating adventures!

The breakfast love affair continues – Homemade tear and share bread with scrambled eggs


I think the name of these rolls is over complicated yet something about it is also totally endearing. It sounds so much more upbeat, fun and friendly to say tear and share bread rather than bread rolls doesn’t it. But I digress!

I mentioned the breakfast I made with these rolls the other day and here it is in all its avocado green, yellow and red goodness.


I toasted half of each flavour roll then squashed some avocado on top and finished off with a layer of just cooked tomatoes and buttery scrambled eggs. Although the olive roll did hit a sweet flavour spot it was the tomato and parmesan roll that won me over with this combination of breakfast ingredients. A more gusty set of toppings might elevate the olive roll like veggie bacon or veggie pepperoni. Must try that out sometime too.





Homemade bread – tear and share rolls


A long time ago, just after we bought our bread maker, Gav made the rash statement that he was going to make all the recipes in the book that came along with the machine.

So far that is still a work in progress but recently we have both been having a dabble so I thought I’d share here.

Above is an olive tear and share bread. And below is a sun-dried tomato and parmesan tear and share.


For both of these breads the machine does all the kneading and then after a first prove you remove the dough, knock it back and shape into the rolls. As they prove again they touch making a ring of rolls.

Both of these were really tasty, perfect with a pasta dish. I even toasted them to make breakfast, I’ll share that in a few days.

We liked the tomato one so much that Gav made a loaf from the same mixture the following week.


Gotta love bread in all shapes and sizes.

The breakfast love affair continues – Eggy Bread with Maple syrup soaked fruit


Is it French toast or Eggy bread? Or do you have another name for bread dipped in an egg mixture and then fried? In my family we are the Eggy bread camp. French toast was far too posh for Leeds when I was growing up on the 70’s.

During my breakfast adventures recently I’ve tended to make savoury concoctions. This is rooted in our go to weekend breakfast ingredient eggs. Fried egg sandwiches are one the menu almost every Saturday morning here but when my niece stays over I usually make pancakes or eggy bread and we drizzle on the maple syrup to made these all the sweeter.

A few weeks ago I decided it was time to jazz up my usual version with some fruit. This was frozen so I defrosted it in the microwave in a slug of maple syrup. Mmm…..

The verdict? Delish. And if you cut your eggy bread into triangles it looks all the prettier!




The breakfast love affair continues – Chocolate Pancakes


Indulgence at its best. My niece was round for a sleepover and I wanted to make pancakes for our breakfast but she isn’t a big blueberry fan (crazy I know.) I was trying to think of an alternative that she would like and of course chocolate was going to be a winner.

I used my usual pancake recipe and threw in the chopped choc before cooking. I’d found a bar of white, dark and milk chocolate mixed in together and this combination looked pretty and gave a balance of chocolate-ness.


My niece and I had ours topped with banana and I have to admit it was a perfect addition. Apart from the fact that banana and chocolate are a great partnership anyway, the fruit made you think you were being healthier than you were but it also worked as a balance for the heavier pancakes. All in all a breakfast success.