Saturday, 26 April 2014

simply eat. something sweet // rocky road

Ahh...Rocky Road. Chocolately, chewy, crunchy deliciousness, is there anything better? Turns

Until last year I had never made my own Rocky Road...and I know they are extremely naughty but it was all in aid of a good cause! (sort of...) You see in the world of Retail everyone has to do the dreaded 'Stocktake' at some point in the year, they are long, dreary affairs which require endless preparation and are generally the last thing you want to be doing of an evening.

So last year I made these to take and cheer everyone up...well they went down a storm and I think everyone wanted the recipe! And guess what?! This Monday is yet again Stocktake evening so in honour of that I wanted to share the recipe with you for when you are having one of 'those' days!

  • 100g Unsalted Butter
  • 300g Chocolate ( I used half milk / plain)
  • 2 tbsp Golden Syrup
This is the base for all the other goodies you can add in...this next part of the recipe list is a real rough guide to what I added but by all means get creative and add in whatever you want! Any type of biscuits would work, salted pretzels would be awesome or maybe some gummy sweets instead of marshmallows...
  • Half a packet of Rich Tea Biscuits
  • A Handful of Dried Cranberries (traditionally glace cherries are used but I detest them!)
  • One packet of Malteasers / One Crunchie bar
  • Roughly 75g of Mini Marshmallows

  • Break up the chocolate into small pieces and place in a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water along with the butter and the golden syrup. Make sure the bowl isn't touching the water.
  • Heat gently until you have a gorgeous pool of molten chocolate.
  • Once melted take off the heat and crumble in the biscuits along with the other ingredients.
  • Stir until each piece is well coated, if there seems like too much chocolate left then add in a few more ingredients. 
  • The mix should mostly be all the good things you have put in, you want a bite of everything not just chocolate...
  • Tip the mix into a foil lined deep rectangular tin. 
  • Leave to cool slightly to room temp and then pop in the fridge to solidify.
  • Once solid take out and carefully remove from the foil, cut into squares as big as you dare!
  • This keeps best in the fridge in an airtight container. 


Thursday, 24 April 2014

simply eat. lunch // mexican bean, cheese and salad wraps

I LOVE tortilla wraps, they are possibly the most versatile 'bread-like' product out there, just think of the possibilities! Quesadillas, fajitas, enchiladas... Plus if you open a pack, have a few and then think you won't use the rest this week, just pop them in the freezer, they defrost in seconds and are good to go another day!

This filling idea came about because my mum and I love a very similar version you can buy from M&S, so last week after using half a can of mixed beans for another meal we decided to create our own version...

Ingredients (for 1 wrap)
  • Flour (or corn) tortilla wrap
  • 1tsp Sour Cream / Mayo (or 1/4 an avocado would be a healthier replacement)
  • 1tbsp Grated Cheese
  • 2tbsp Mixed Beans in Spicy Tomato Sauce (majority of the sauce drained off through a colander)
  • 1tsp Salsa
  • Large handful of salad leaves

  • Layer it all up, roll and apply to face! (I 'layered' in the same order as listed above...)
And as much as I enjoy the shop bought version this is obviously SO much cheaper to make, especially for a group/family and it was just as tasty and satisfying! (sorry M&S...) Plus the beans are a great source of Protein for all you veggies out there, or for anyone trying to cut back on their daily meat consumption.


Tuesday, 8 April 2014

simply eat. breakfast // carrot & apricot breakfast muffins

Since starting my Nutrition course I have been trying to find ways to include more wholemeal products into my diet as they have a lower GI value and release energy slowly to keep you going for longer. So I though why not start with something I love...muffins! 

For those of you who don't like eating breakfast or simply don't have the time in the mornings, you can grab this tasty beauty and take it with you to eat on the go or for later in the morning when the idea of breakfast doesn't seem quite so repellent...(more on why breakfast is so important after the recipe)

  • 5oz Self Raising Flour
  • 5oz Self Raising Wholemeal Flour
  • 3oz Caster Sugar
  • 1tsp Bicarbonate of Soda
  • 1/4tsp Baking Powder
  • 1/4tsp Mixed Spice (or cinnamon)
  • A tiny pinch of Salt (you can cut this out if you are trying to lower your salt intake)
  • 3floz Vegetable/Sunflower Oil
  • 6floz Milk (semi-skimmed or skimmed) 
  • 1/2tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1 Egg
  • 2oz Dried Apricots chopped (around 10 apricots)
  • 4.5-5oz Grated Carrot (roughly 2 large carrots)
  • Zest of half an Orange (optional)
  • 1tbsp of Apricot Jam (or Orange Marmalade would work well too)
  • 1-2tbsp Sunflower seeds

  1. Preheat the oven to 180c and line a 12 hole muffin tin with cases.
  2. Weigh and combine all the dry ingredients into one large bowl, give a quick stir with a fork to combine and break up any larger flour lumps.
  3. In a jug measure first the oil and then the milk on top, then add in the vanilla extract and the egg, give a quick whisk with a fork.
  4. Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and pour in the wet ingredients along with the chopped apricots, grated carrot and orange zest.
  5. Stir until just combined and no flour is visible, it will look lumpy but if you over mix the batter it will make tough muffins...and no one wants that!
  6. Divide the mix between 12 muffin cases and bake for 20-25minutes.
  7. Once golden and springy to touch remove from the oven and take out of the tin to cool on a wire rack.
  8. Once cool we can top the muffins! Gently toast the Sunflower seeds in a dry frying pan over a low heat, keep an eye on them as they will brown quickly.
  9. In a small microwavable container heat the Jam (or Marmalade) until runny and spreadable. Be careful it will be super hot!!
  10. Using a pastry brush spread a thin layer of the jam onto the muffin and top with the sunflower seeds, do this one at a time so the jam is nice and sticky for the seeds to...ahem...stick to.
(These muffins would freeze really well, once they have cooled pop them in a sealed bag or container and pop in the freezer. Once thawed you can add the jam and seeds.)

I didn't make these muffins all wholemeal as this can make them very dense so I went half and half, plus the carrots, apricots and seeds add vitmains and minerals which are great for the body too. There is still some sugar in this recipe as I think it needs it, although the apricots add a natural sweetness so you could cut it down more OR not add the jam glaze on the top and simply sprinkle the plain sunflower seeds on the muffins before you bake.


So many people skip breakfast (you know who you are...) and I don't want to be preachy but it really is the most important meal of the day! The body has been in 'fasting mode' overnight and so it needs a good boost of energy to kickstart the day.

If you don't eat breakfast then often by 10-11ish the body starts craving energy, this when when most of us will be tempted by sugary treats to give us that 'boost' when really we need something that will release energy s-l-o-w-l-y to keep us going until lunch. 

Good choices for breakfast would be things that have a low GI value and therefore release energy slowly, such as porridge or wholegrain toast. (Or maybe one of my muffins!)


Thursday, 3 April 2014

simply eat. kitchen buys // lunch boxes

This will be a regular post here on simply eat. A little round up of some of my favourite kitchen items out there on the market right now. Because I believe your kitchen should be a place you want to be, so why not fill it with things you love just like the other rooms in your home.

1/2 / all images from black+blum / 3/4

Today I am craving these fab lunch boxes from black+blum...they not only come in fun colours but they are seriously clever too, look at all those little compartments, pots, spoons etc! It works for me because it means only having to take one thing to work but with the separate compartments it means you can take savoury AND sweet (plus sauce/dressing in the pot that comes in the 'box appetit' 3/4) without them mixing and getting all gross...

I love the 'lunch pot' (1/2) because I think it would be a great way to take breakfast to work (if you don't have time to eat one at home) as you can put cereal or oats for porridge in the bottom and take fruit to add in the top section.

Breakfast really is the most important meal of the day and so many of us skip it so a handy tub like this could really help. Prep it all the night before then all you have to do is grab and go in the morning! Much better for you than that chocolate muffin that was calling to you in the coffee shop...x