Wednesday, 17 August 2011


Having lived in the Middle East for 20 years I have a love for Middle -Eastern food. Most people think of the food of that area as purely Lebanese food like koubi, tabouli, shawerma, stuffed vine-leaves, kousa but there are variations in every country of the region.
One of our favourite dishes is mulokia, a staple of Jordanian and Egyptian cuisine. It's made from the leaves of the mulokia plant (jew's mallow in English). I remember sitting on cushions on the floor with other women spending all morning stripping leaves and laying them out to dry in the sun, ready to be packed away to use in the winter.
Photo courtesy of Pinakbet. This is what fresh Molokhia looks like and this is what I would like to be able to buy, but I've not found it anywhere in England. So I have to use the dried version which I found in Taj supermarket in Brighton.
Anyway here is my finished dish.

Here's the recipe if you want to make it yourself.
Fry 1 chopped large onion til slightly browned. Add 1 chopped large tomato, cook for 2 minutes. Add 1/2 bag of mulokia leaves, chopped. Add 1 pint hot water, 2 oxo cubes and 1 whole garlic finely chopped. Bring to the boil then turn to a low heat and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Serve over rice.
Most people serve this with chicken either cooked in the mulokia or roasted, but we like it without.

Thursday, 11 August 2011

Wednesday's Words of Weightloss Wisdom

So true, so very true. I am my own worst enemy.

Friday, 5 August 2011

Recipes with Heinz

I have entered a recipe competition on the All Recipes website. The competition is sponsored by Heinz soups, so your recipe has to feature Heinz soup, obviously, as a 'secret ingredient'.
I have used their new soup in a tube called Squeeze & Stir. It's a cup-a-soup but in a tube. It's a puree rather than a powder and makes a mugful of soup when diluted with hot water and stirred. There are 4 flavours to choose from - tomato, tomato and basil, vegetable and minestrone.
This is what I have made using the tomato and basil flavour. I'm sure if you had seen the photo before the mention of soup you'd never have thought that soup was an ingredient.

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Hyper Japan 2011

On Sunday I had a great day out at the Hyper Japan Show at Olympia 2 in London. It was a fabulous event full of shopping, eating and shows (3 of my favourite things).
The food stalls were really busy, and they needed a lot more space. As expected there was Sushi on offer from Yutaka, Sushi Plus and So Restaurant, but also lots of other great foods like Ramen Bento, Minamoto Kitchoan and Manpukutei. As a dutiful show goer I had to try them to report to you that everything was yummy but my favourites were the fried chicken skewers, the green tea brownie and the prawn bento.
The bazaar had lots of stalls selling cutesy Kawaii style goodies and lolita dresses , but there were also stalls with Japanese films, Manga, T-shirts (bought 2) and if you fancied your portrait in Manga style then there were 4 artists scribbling away feverishly to get through a massive queue of people.
The 2 shows I watched were the Cosplay and Kawaii costume contests. The attention to detail and effort people had put into their costumes was amazing and the Final Fantasy weapons were brilliant.
Will definately be going next year.

Felicity's handmade hair accessories

Samples of the award winning sushi.
                                                                   Mmmmmmm macarons           

Fabulous Final Fantasy cosplay

                                                          Final Fantasy Cosplay group

                                                               Have a go at making sushi

                                                          Kawaii contestant.

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Feta and Beetoot

I have got loads of beetroot and didn't really know what to do with it. Well here is a great simple to make and tasty recipe.

Cook and dice the beetroot and place in serving dish.
Add cubed or crumbled feta cheese.
Top with some toasted pine nuts.

I used Apetina feta cubes. I put lots of pine nuts because I love them. You don't have to put that many if you don't want.

Can be served warm or cold.

Saturday, 25 June 2011

Read the T&C's (and get your mum to listen)

I have learnt to always read the T&C's on competitions for important things like holidays. Sometimes the prize doesn't include flights and I'd hate to win a great holiday and then realise I can't take it because I can't afford the flights.
There is a great photo comp at the moment with Pink Lady apples. It's a photo comp and clearly states the photo must be landscape NOT portrait.
So anyway, what does this have to do with my mum? Well we went to Brighton last week, the weather was sunny, got out my Pink Lady and gave the camera to mum. I specifically told her to take the photos landscape. Did she listen? NO. Did I notice at the time? NO. I was too busy posing. Got some great shots but all of them portrait, so I can't use them.
I love this photo the best.

Friday, 17 June 2011

Bill's in Lewes and Brighton

I've just had a much needed break and spent 5 days in Brighton with my mum. While there we went to Bill's Cafe. I've heard a lot about Bill's and really wanted to go there. I nearly went to the one in covent Garden but when I poked my head through the door it was jam-packed full so I went elsewhere, I don't like to wait for an afternoon coffee when there are lots of other places to choose from.
Anyway we went into the Lewes branch for an afternoon coffee and cake, but decided on the Afternoon Tea. Oh what a fab decision it was definately the best scone I have ever had - not dry, slighly warm, a bit crumbly and with really thick clotted cream and tasty jam.
At Bill's in Brighton we had dinner. I had the grilled halloumi and roasted pepper  in a brioche bun. I would never think to have savoury things in a brioche bun, but it was delicious. Mum had a paella, which was tasty but a bit too spicy for me.

On another day we went to Bill's for lunch and had a fab Egg Florentine. Two large slices of lightly toasted bread with spinach and perfectly poached eggs with a very tasty hollandaise sauce and sprinkled with pumpkin seeds. Very tasty and plenty for lunch. The best drink we had was a hot elderflower cordial with fruit. I like cold elderflower and it was even nicer hot, something I will definately be making at home.

My favourite dessert was the Lamington. A moist square of lamington covered in chunky coconut with vanilla ice-cream and surrounded with a tert fruit compote, in one word - delicious.

So even though we ate at some lovely cafes in Lewes, Hove and Brighton we both liked Bill's the best and would thoroughly recommend it to everyone.

Friday, 10 June 2011

Pilgrims Choice Cheese

Well, I didn't win it, but I did get one of 5 runner's up cheesy hamper prizes. Pilgrims have posted the photos of all the entries which was great to see. There were some really good ones and some real turkeys. In my humble opinion the winner wasn't the best entry but you have to accept the judges decision and judged competitions are always better than voted ones. I guess we all have different opinions on what's best but I honestly think the winner wasn't the best.

Friday, 3 June 2011

Prize from Groupon

I entered a rather strange competition on the Groupon blog to win dinner at a posh restaurant with an employee named Sam. I didn't win but they loved my entry so gave me £25 credit to spend on Groupon which is great because it's something I will definately use. I have had some really great deals from them and discovered some great restaurants that I have since been back to (and paid full price).

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Pilgrims Choice competition

I have been inspired by other clever compers to enter more creative comps so.......Here's my entry into the Pilgrims Choice cheesy accessory competition. It took me about 3 hours to make.

Hello and welcome.

Hello and welcome to everybody who floats by this way and reads my little blog.

I have decided to start my own blog to keep track of the loves of my life. So this blog will be mainly about my comping and hopefully about my fabulous wins. But also I love food, a bit too much though, so I'll be posting about food and dieting too.