Seville orange drizzle cake

img_1501Planting orange trees around here is a tricky business. It is hard to tell with a young tree whether the fruit is going to be sweet or bitter. We planted several trees when we came to live here, thinking they were sweet oranges and a lemon – but they turned out to be the Seville variety. We managed, eventually, to grow a sweet orange and a lemon, but we still have a glut of Seville oranges every year from the original trees.

I make tons of marmalade, to give away to friends and to various charity bake sales, but I am always at a loss to know what to do with the rest. Continue reading “Seville orange drizzle cake”

Carrot, banana & apple muffins (vegan)

img_1481-600-x-416Day 2 of our vegan adventure and now we are starting to get organised. Supplies of some types of fresh food are not reliable around these parts, particularly in the winter, so it is sometimes difficult to plan ahead.

This morning, when we were out for a walk in the absolutely glorious sunshine we are enjoying at the minute, I popped into the little Migros supermarket in our marina, which often stocks items that aren’t available elsewhere. Triple score. Beansprouts, fresh coriander AND oat milk. I feel a Thai curry coming on.

When we first decided to take part in Veganuary, I had a trawl through some vegan websites to get some ideas of what we might eat (largely because we were going on a trip to Europe, and I thought I might bring a few goodies back with me).  Although I did find some good ideas, many of the sites seemed more like a chemistry lesson than somewhere I might find a recipe for something nice I would like to eat. Continue reading “Carrot, banana & apple muffins (vegan)”

Vegan ‘Cornish’ pasties

img_1483Today is the first day of our vegan adventure, inspired by the Veganuary campaign. We really should have started yesterday – what with it being the first day of January and all that – but we only got back from our trip on Saturday and we’d invited Linda for Sunday supper, so it didn’t seem appropriate. (Roast chicken with all the trimmings, followed by mince pies, since you ask).

So far, so good. Breakfast today was Bircher muesli, made with apples and almond milk – slightly on the soggy side for my liking, but Robin pronounced it delicious. Luckily, I’ve made a large supply of super-nutty toasted granola this afternoon, so I won’t have to put myself through that again. Continue reading “Vegan ‘Cornish’ pasties”

A duo of easy-bake biscuits for cheese

IMG_1455.jpgI’m making our friend Linda a little Christmas hamper, so that she has a few yummy goodies to tuck into if she is at home in front of the fire over the next week while we are away. She does like a piece of cheese, and decent crackers are not something you can generally buy in a Turkish supermarket, so I thought I’d better get creative. Continue reading “A duo of easy-bake biscuits for cheese”

Preparing for Veganuary

DSC00026.jpgI’ve been very poor at blog posting for the last month – we went to the UK for a couple of weeks on a house-hunting expedition in Devon and Cornwall (of which more later), and a quick catch-up with our respective families in Warwickshire. Sadly, while we were in the UK, a very old friend of ours died, so I returned to Turkey for a few days, only to execute a quick turnaround to go back for the funeral.

I am now back for a short stay before we head off to Prague next weekend for the Christmas holiday. We won’t be home until new year’s eve, and are planning to take part in Veganuary for the month of January, so I am getting ahead with a few things for the freezer, so that my resolve is not too severely tested on Day One! Continue reading “Preparing for Veganuary”

Slow-cooked beef and Old Speckled Hen stew

DSC00020.jpgWe’ve been in the UK for the last ten days, mainly drifting about in Devon and Cornwall, where the temperatures were surprisingly mild and the sun shone most of the time. Now that we are back in Warwickshire, things have taken a downward turn, with strong winds and pelting rain.

My parents are due back from a holiday in Madeira today, so if I can ever brave the rain to get across to Tesco, I am planning to make a warming beef and ale stew to leave for them to heat up when they get home – they have a two-hour drive from Gatwick when they land, so my mum certainly won’t be wanting to cook. A bowl of stew and a herby dumpling or two should be just the ticket. Continue reading “Slow-cooked beef and Old Speckled Hen stew”

Courgette (zucchini), ginger and lemon muffins

IMG_1406.jpgWhen I was raking through the fridge for forgotten and unloved veggies to go into our diet day minestrone, I came across a few courgettes that were looking well past their sell-by date. One went into the soup, but that left two more, so I was trying to think of something slightly different to make with them. (I’m sure you must all think that dinner at our place entirely revolves around using up tired fruit and veg, and that you’re all hoping to goodness you never get invited. Not true, honest Guv, but I just hate throwing things away.) Continue reading “Courgette (zucchini), ginger and lemon muffins”

A very lemony lemon meringue pie

IMG_1422.jpgOur friends have sold their apartment and the deal concludes this coming week, so they are having a farewell dinner for a few of us this evening. My task is to bring the pudding. I had planned to make Heidi’s Tongan coconut tart, which we came across on our recent holiday there (a kind of lovely gooey coconut custard in a crunchy case). Unfortunately, one of the other guests hates coconut, so I’ve had to have a re-think. I WILL do the coconut tart, but you will have to wait a bit longer for that one. Continue reading “A very lemony lemon meringue pie”

Mediterranean beef & cinnamon braise (and Cevdet’s carrots)

IMG_1397.JPGHmmm, we seem to have a change in the weather. Shock, horror, only 25 degrees and very blustery. Lots of white horses on the water (or ‘white geese’ as our neighbour calls them) and the sun keeps hiding behind the clouds. Last night, we ate dinner inside for the first time since May – it was so windy that the contents of half of the garden were blowing around our terrace (which always includes the possibility of a flying saucer in the shape of a carelessly discarded cat bowl), and I also feared for the wine glasses – we’ve had so many blown over in the past, so now we always go for low-slung models when we are choosing replacements. Continue reading “Mediterranean beef & cinnamon braise (and Cevdet’s carrots)”

Cocoa-banana muffins

img_1392You may think I make an awful lot of muffins. You would be right. They are such useful items to take on a walk or to the beach – more robust than slices of cake, which will inevitably break up or get squashed in your backpack or beach bag. They are also much easier to serve and eat when you are out and about – and everyone gets their own individual little bundle of goodness, so no potential for squabbling in the ranks. Continue reading “Cocoa-banana muffins”