Make Your Own

  • St Kitts Bhaji Mix Recipe

    St Kitts Bhaji Mix Recipe

    We don’t have any of our bhaji mix on the shelf at the moment, but we don’t want to leave you without - so by popular request, here’s how you can make it at home!

     

    Bhaji mix ingredients:

    200g gram flour

    1 tsp garam masala

    1 tsp baking powder

    water

     

    Method:

    Mix dry ingredients together and add enough water to make a batter – you want it thicker than for pancakes, but not stiff.

    My favourite bhaji is cauliflower, so I’ll give you the instructions for that. Break cauliflower into florets and put them into boiling water, bring back to the boil then remove from the heat straight away and strain. They will feel like they are too firm, but trust me this will make them perfect. Drop the cauliflower florets into the batter and coat thoroughly. Heat about an inch of oil in a deep frying pan, once it is hot drop the coated cauliflower in and fry, turning regularly, until a golden brown. Drain on kitchen paper and give a sprinkle of salt before serving. Best served hot with a yoghurt dip, or as a side with a curry.

     

    You can also use peas, chopped onions, partially cooked sweet potato… anything you fancy really! They’re also great with salad, if the sun finally comes out and you fancy a quick bite…

     

    Photo credit: mdid via Foter.com / CC BY

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  • Anglesey Eggs

    Anglesey Eggs

    As always, we had a fantastic time at our monthly evening meal! Thank you to everyone who came, we love the community spirit and it’s great fun hosting you all. For those of you who missed it, we had a Welsh theme as a belated St David’s Day celebration, and Susan whipped up her own version of Anglesey Eggs (spoiler alert, they were delicious!). Here’s her recipe so you can give it a go at home…

     

    Anglesey Eggs

     For 4 people

    500g potatoes, peeled and chopped

    50g butter

    4 leeks, sliced

    50g butter

    50g flour

    ½ litre milk

    mustard powder to taste

    bay leaf

    150g mature cheddar grated

    extra cheese to top, grated

    8 hard boiled eggs

     

    - Boil and mash the potatoes.

    - Fry the leeks in the butter until tender and then mix into the mashed potatoes.

    - Put the potatoes in the bottom of an oven proof dish.

    - Quarter the boiled eggs and spread over the top of the mash.

    - Melt the butter in a pan, add the flour and mustard and cook until frothy.

    - Remove from heat and whisk in the milk a little at a time, add the bay leaf.

    - Return to the heat and stir until it thickens.

    - Remove from heat and stir in the grated cheese.

    - Pour the sauce over the eggs and potato, sprinkle the remaining cheese over the top and put in a hot oven until the sauce is bubbly and brown.

     

    It’s great served with herby bread (we used this Welsh recipe) and maybe even a crunchy salad. Enjoy!

     

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  • Taste of Summer!

    Taste of Summer!

    We love a glass of pimms - it makes it feel like summer no matter what the weather! Here's our twist on the fabulous classic... We've made a special basket of plants, just for this purpose (not that we drink a lot *cough*)

    Ingredients:

    1 part Pimms No. 1

    3 parts Sparkling Sicilian Lemonade

    Fresh Apple Mint Leaves

    Fresh Lemon Verbena Leaves

    Fresh (Wild) Strawberry Halves

    Fresh Cucumber Slices

    Lemon Slices

    Ice

    Just pop your ice in a jug and pour over the Pimms. Add your fruit and leaves to taste and top up with lemonade. Find yourself a pretty straw and a nice spot in the garden and enjoy!

    If you're just not a fan of pimms (sacrilegious though it is) here's a few more summer drink recipes - so you can get your practice in while it's still spring!

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  • Sage and Thyme Steaming Treatment

    Sage and Thyme Steaming Treatment

    We’ve given ourselves a productive new year’s resolution this year – we’re finally going to get the hang of this blogging business! No more getting distracted, you’re going to be hearing a lot more from us… So to start on the right note (halfway through January, but close enough!) here’s our first ‘make your own’ of the year.

    It’s the time of year for dry skin and blocked noses, but we’ve got a super easy, very relaxing way to combat both at the same time. A sage and thyme steaming treatment will open and unclog your pores, whilst clearing your sinuses for easier breathing.

    Ingredients:

    Handful fresh sage

    Handful fresh thyme

    Bowl of boiled water

    Towel

    jan.17.blog.3

    It really is as easy as it sounds like it’s going to be! Just pop the herbs into a bowl of freshly boiled water, then lean your face over (not so close that you scald yourself…), lay the towel over your head and breathe deeply. You can stay here for 5 to 10 minutes, before wiping your face off with a cold, damp cloth to close up those pores again. For best results, follow up with a refreshing, toning spritzer and moisturiser.

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  • Make your own - Bath Bombs (again!)

    Make your own - Bath Bombs (again!)

    We know you've probably seen this before, but in honour of Christmas we thought we'd share our most popular gift making idea ever. These bath bombs are so easy to make, and are a fantastic, home made gift. They're also great for relaxing after a hard day's Christmas shopping!

    Ingredients:

    Witch Hazel Water

    Bicarbonate of Soda

    Citric Acid

    Essential Oil (we like lavender for an extra soothing bath, but anything you like will work!)

    Dried herbs, petals, flowers or food colouring  (again, lavender flowers are it for us)

     

    Moulds:

    We've got the kind of house that always has kids running around, and of course that means kids toys everywhere - so we used a plastic ball pit ball, cut in half (ingenious, we know) as our mould. But you can use anything that has the shape you like - ice cube trays, cupcake tins, whatever you've got lying around.

    Bath.Bomb.how.to.image

    Directions:

    1. Combine equal amounts of citric acid and bicarbonate of soda.
    2. Add a few drops of the essential oil of your choice, plus any flowers or colouring you’re using & mix thoroughly.
    3. Sparingly add Witch Hazel Water (a few drops at a time) until the mixture is just damp enough to hold its shape when compressed. Go easy on adding the liquid- if you add too much the mixture will do all its fizzing in your bowl instead of your bath!
    4. Pack the mixture firmly into both halves of your mould, then push together to join. (If using an ice cube tray or similar, just make sure to compress the mixture into the mould so it doesn't all fall apart when you take it out).
    5. Allow to set for at least 2 hours before removing from the mould.
    6. If your bomb falls apart when you remove it from your mould, it’s probably too dry- put the mixture back in a bowl and add a few more drops of Witch Hazel water.
    7. Package in some cellophane with ribbon as a gorgeous home made gift - or spoil yourself and get that bath running!
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  • Irish Cobble and Soda Bread Recipe

    Irish Cobble and Soda Bread Recipe

    First things first, thank you to everyone who came to our Irish night – it was a fantastic evening! As always, Susan cooked a delicious meal, and we had quite a few requests for the recipe. So here it is – Susan’s Irish Cobble and Soda Bread…

     Irish Cobble

    Ingredients:

    250g sausages (we used vegetarian but meat eaters don’t need to be left out!)

    700g white potatoes

    1 carrot

    1 onion

    500ml stock (again, we used vegetable but meat would work too)

    Mature cheddar cheese to taste

     

    Method:

    - Preheat the oven to 200C

    - Using the ‘slicer’ attachment in your food processor (or just a knife if you prefer!), thinly slice the sausages and put to one side. Peel the potatoes, then thinly slice, and repeat with the carrot. Peel the onion and roughly chop.

    - In a large baking dish, or small ramekins for individual portions, place a layer of potatoes. On top of this, layer the onion, then the sausages, then the carrot, repeating until all of the ingredients have been used and making sure to top with a layer of potato.

    - Pour over your ready-made stock, making sure to coat as much of the dish as possible. The stock should come to half way up the dish.

    - Cover with foil and place in the oven for roughly 1 – 2hrs, until the potato is completely soft.

    - Remove the foil and cover the top of the potatoes with grated cheese. Return to the oven for 10 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and browning.

     

    For the soda bread, we used this recipe from the BBC – it’s just the right amount of sour and went deliciously with the Cobble (or just a heap of butter…)

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  • Make your own - Hair Shine Treatment

    Make your own - Hair Shine Treatment

    I don’t know about you but the miserable winter we’ve been having has left my hair in a complete mess. Luckily, this super easy to make hair shine treatment is great for split ends, brittle hair or even just a bit of a pick me up on a girly night in.

    Ingredients:

    10g rosemary leaves

    10g dried chamomile flowers

    100ml fractionated coconut oil

    This makes enough for one treatment for very long hair or several if you’re rocking a pixie cut! You’ll have to make it up a bit in advance – just pop all of the ingredients into a jar or bottle and leave to infuse (I only left it overnight but if you can manage a week then even better). When you’re ready to use it, strain through a sieve to get rid of the herbs and work the oil into your scalp and hair. Wrap your hair in clingfilm (or a hot towel if you’re feeling fancy) and leave for a minimum of 30 minutes. If your hair is particularly dry then it can be left in overnight, but be warned – this is not a good idea if your hair leans toward being greasy! Wash the oil out with shampoo; you might need to do this a couple of times to get all of the oil out. Voila! Enjoy your soft, shiny, revived hair. If you’d like to know more about why this works, check out this article about the benefits of coconut oil for your hair.

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  • Make your own - Bath Bombs

    Make your own - Bath Bombs

    A great gift idea for all occasions (and our most popular blog post ever!), our bath bombs dissolve in a hot bath for silky smooth, fragrant bath water. Bonus - they're exceedingly easy to make!

    Ingredients:

    Witch Hazel Water

    Bicarbonate of Soda

    Citric Acid

    Essential Oil (we like lavender for an extra soothing bath, but anything you like will work!)

    Dried herbs, petals, flowers or food colouring  (again, lavender flowers are it for us)

     

    Moulds:

    We've got the kind of house that always has kids running around, and of course that means kids toys everywhere - so we used a plastic ball pit ball, cut in half (ingenious, we know) as our mould. But you can use anything that has the shape you like - ice cube trays, cupcake tins, whatever you've got lying around.

    Bath.Bomb.how.to.image

    Directions:

    1. Combine equal amounts of citric acid and bicarbonate of soda.
    2. Add a few drops of the essential oil of your choice, plus any flowers or colouring you’re using & mix thoroughly.
    3. Sparingly add Witch Hazel Water (a few drops at a time) until the mixture is just damp enough to hold its shape when compressed. Go easy on adding the liquid- if you add too much the mixture will do all its fizzing in your bowl instead of your bath!
    4. Pack the mixture firmly into both halves of your mould, then push together to join. (If using an ice cube tray or similar, just make sure to compress the mixture into the mould so it doesn't all fall apart when you take it out).
    5. Allow to set for at least 2 hours before removing from the mould.
    6. If your bomb falls apart when you remove it from your mould, it’s probably too dry- put the mixture back in a bowl and add a few more drops of Witch Hazel water.
    7. Package in some cellophane with ribbon as a gorgeous home made gift - or spoil yourself and get that bath running!
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  • Sri Lankan Coconut and Dark Rum Snowball Truffles

    Sri Lankan Coconut and Dark Rum Snowball Truffles

    We know everyone’s probably sick of it by now but nevertheless this week’s recipe is Christmas themed. (At least it’s only once a year!) These deliciously tempting truffles are great for the run up to Christmas, on the day or even as a special gift. Without further ado, Sri Lankan coconut and dark rum snowball truffles…

    Ingredients:

    200g Sri Lankan coconut chocolate

    100g clotted cream (being from Cornwall, we always recommend Rodda's!)

    1 – 2 tbsp dark rum

    50 – 100g desiccated coconut

     

    Method:

    The great thing about these truffles is that there’s no need for tempering or any of that fancy shmancy stuff. Just microwave your chocolate for 20 seconds at a time, stirring in between, until it’s all melted. Then add in your clotted cream and rum, and stir until it makes a beautiful creamy mixture. Refrigerate until it’s set hard enough to handle – usually around an hour. Scoop up a teaspoon at a time and roll into balls (you might want to wear some gloves for this – it can get messy!). Once you’ve formed your truffles, pop them into a bowl of desiccated coconut and roll until they’re covered.

    Whether you choose to box them up as a gift or eat them straight away, these will knock your socks off! If you want to keep them for a later date, remember to keep them in the fridge – no one likes gone off cream… Enjoy!

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  • Make Your Own Christmas Compilation

    Make Your Own Christmas Compilation

    I don’t know where the time keeps going, but it’s definitely happening a bit too fast for my liking! Christmas is just around the corner now and the money spent is already adding up – so here is our compilation of all things ‘make your own’ to keep Christmas cheap and still beautiful!

    We’ll start with the all important gifts – some of these are our very own recipes and some come from some very clever people with more time on their hands than I have! Have a gander and give some a go yourself:

    It's a scarf, but with pockets!

    This one takes a bit more time, but it's so beautiful - a leather messenger bag.

    Ministry of silly walks, in clock form.

    Bath milk bags.

    Soothing hand balm.

    Bath salts - so easy and they can come in any smell you fancy!

    Bath vinegars - a nice jar or bottle can really make a difference to this one.

    Lightbulb terrarium, does it get much more creative?

    Beautiful wood burned boxes. If you've got the tools and the time, these make the most gorgeous, unique gift.

    This elegant, delicate votive candle holder is just so beautiful, I want a room full of them!

     

    It’s all well and good having gifts sorted, but it never really feels like Christmas until the decorations are up! Here are our favourite DIY decorations:

    Double lattice ornaments

    Christmas tatting patterns

    We used this video to make the decorations for our shop this year - they're rather stunning!

    Super intricate, ever so delicate, paper snowflakes

    If you're looking for more ideas, here's 17 easy peasy decorations you could give a go

     

    And of course, it wouldn’t be Christmas without a drink or two! Have a go at some of these Chrimbo cocktails:

    Still our favourite, the Chocolate Alexander

    A classic with a twist, Appleberry Mulled Wine

    We love a bit of cardamom, but we'd never have thought to put it in a martini! This bitter orange and cardamom martini is just to die for.

    Cranberry mojito, tastes as good as it looks!

    It's Christmas, of course that means there has to be eggnog...

    And in case you need something a bit more warming, hot chocolate and baileys - enough said.

     

    There you go - everything you could possibly need to get you through another Christmas (or at least get you tipsy enough to not care!)

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