Sunday, 29 April 2012

Kitchen Gadgets Grate to Plate - Review

Okay this may not be the fanciest looking grater you've ever seen - but it does the job of grating and slicing really well.  
It comes with three different steel blades that are easy to change.  Just slide one out and slide another in.  
The suction feet grip to virtually any work surface including wood making it non slip and safe to use.  The feet then fold neatly underneath for storage after use so it won't take up much room in your cupboard.  
The Grate to Plate is also easy to clean and the blades are dishwasher safe.
The body is made from hard plastic and can only be cleaned in hot soapy water.

Now to put the Grate to Plate to the test!
First I thought I'd grate some Parmesan as it's such a hard cheese. 
Put a bowl or small plate underneath and away you go.
In just a few effortless turns of the handle I had a bowlful of nicely grated Parmesan!
What about potato?  Just change the blade to the slicing one and pop your potato in.
Hold down the clamp - turn the handle and away you go.
 The potato slices weren't the neatest of slices but they sliced nice and thinly and it was so easy to do. Washing up took a minute in some nice hot soapy water so there's no need to use a dishwasher if you don't have one.
Love the idea that the food goes straight onto a plate or bowl - a large dinner plate wont quite fit underneath, but a slightly smaller plate is fine.
Of course it can grate fruit and other vegetables too.
All in all I'd say it's worth every penny as it does what it says and is so easy and safe to use. 
The Judge Grate to Plate retails around £13.20 and is available from all good cookery stores.  For more information pop over to www.judgecookware.co.uk 
Thank you to Pam for sending me this to review.

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Rehoming ex Battery Hens and a Lot of Eggs!

I have always wanted chickens!  We only have a small garden but one thing you can be sure of these hens will be looked after and let out every day without fail.  Just look at the colour of a Free Range egg and they taste really good too!
  I only ever buy free range eggs and can't get my head around why lots of people still choose to buy the ones from battery hens.  I think if people took a little time to read about the terrible conditions in which these poor hens are kept they would buy free range, or not buy eggs at all if they find them too expensive. 
Don't get me wrong we certainly aren't made of money but when you consider the small price free range eggs are (at the time of writing) a typical box of six medium free range eggs is around £1.60 in the UK which is twice the price of the battery eggs.
As this is a food blog I will not go too much into how these poor hens are kept - but you only have to Google 'battery hens' to see what I'm talking about.  They're kept in a space no bigger than a piece of A4 paper.
Some of the images of ex battery hens would make you cry.

Anyway, that said we decided to re-home two ex battery hens along with a Black Rock hen from an amazing woman called Sarah over at Happy Chicks.
Sarah and her husband buy as many ex battery hens as they can re-home so you can always buy them from her straight away without going on a waiting list as is usual.
I'll be writing regular blog posts on how the hens are doing - along with the Eglu we brought from Omlet for them to live in.  We had 15 eggs in the past week so I'm now into cooking up all things egg!  By the way the egg in the picture above is Roxy's egg. 
Here are the hens (Mrs Tweedy, Mrs Hen and Roxy) with Yaz the cat watching.
You can just see Brian the bunny at the back having a nose too.
Yes we have a right farm going on here!
 Just a few of the many ex battery hens at Happy Chicks waiting for a new home.  Some are in a rather poor state with feathers missing and bare bottoms!  But they will soon recover with a lots of love and some good food!
I'll leave you with a short video of Mrs Hen having some sort of clear out of straw - she's so funny!
video

Triple Chocolate Cookies from Domino's - Review

Domino's have just introduced their Limited Edition Triple Chocolate Cookies - on general sale as of yesterday.
 Photo provided by Domino's

It has to be said I'm not a chocolatey dessert kind of person so I'm not the best person to judge them.  Therefore, Paul the husband and official taster of all things chocolate gave them a go!

His verdict:
Lovely and chewy and very chocolatey.  Packed full of milk, white and dark chocolate chips he found no fault at all although he wished they were bigger (he's very greedy by the way)!  The cookies were about 2 and a half inches in size and were cooked perfectly.  
Although they're best served warm, they were still nice cold.  All in all he says they are seriously the best cookies he's ever tasted.
Now that doesn't say a lot for my cooking does it?!

Available at Domino's now and cost £3.49 for four cookies.
Thank you to Claire for sending us a voucher to try them.
   

Friday, 20 April 2012

Leek Bacon Parmesan and Cheddar Quiche Recipe

If you're looking for something healthy to eat which is low in calories then my ultimate quiche made with double cream is most certainly not the way to go!
However, if you're looking for something easy to make, delicious and very moreish this most certainly is the way to go! 
If you follow A Glug of Oil on FaceBook you will not have missed that we now have three hens - hence we have a lot of eggs!
Quiche is a good way to use up eggs.

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Groovy Food Omega Oils - a Review

The Groovy Food Company have kindly sent me two different oils to try.
Omega High Five Cooking Oil:
A fusion of five cold pressed virgin seed oils blended together.  Camelina, avocado, virgin olive oil, sunflower and toasted sesame seed oils make it an ideal healthier alternative to other cooking fats.
I tasted a little before using it to cook and the first taste that you notice is of toasted sesame seeds, but it isn't overpowering at all.
It keeps it's flavour too, even at high temperature and is perfect for frying. 

Organic Omega Cool Oil:
As the name suggests is isn't suitable for heating up, it's a blend of organic cold pressed seed oils. Omega 3, 6 and 9
Flax, hemp, pumpkin and evening primrose seed oils, this oil has perfectly balanced amount of essential fatty acids.
It has to be said the very first time I tasted this I thought it had a strange taste - neither nice or nasty.  I couldn't make my mind up.  
But when you dip bread in and serve with olives it becomes something delicious and I'm quite addicted!  
It's also great drizzled onto salads.  No need to add anything else, just drizzle away!

 Omega Cool Oil – 250ml is around £8.49
High Five Cooking Oil – 500ml is around £6.99
The collection of these and other oils are available throughout Tesco and Sainsbury’s stores nationwide, selected health food retailers and online at Free From and Fine Foods
The Groovy Food Company are very passionate about their products as you can see over at their website: The Groovy Food Company

Thank you to Kelly for sending me some to try.
 

Monday, 16 April 2012

Simple Dinner of Pan-fried Pork with Lemon Garlic and Rosemary

Nice and easy pan-fried pork basted in lovely lemon and garlic with freshly chopped rosemary - perfect partners.
  The cooking time will of course depend on the thickness of your pork.

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Salmon Ceviche with a Florida Grapefruit Dressing

 Salmon Ceviche with Cucumber, Chive and Florida Grapefruit dressing - sound good?  Then read on.......

 You may remember a while back when I told you about a competition Florida Grapefruit were holding over at their FaceBook page.  Well last week I went to London along with a few other food bloggers and had a lovely day with the winner Victoria Ashley and Celebrity Masterchef winner Lisa Faulkner.
Victoria won the competition with her delicious Florida grapefruit, honey and
ginger cheesecake!

Lisa showed us a couple of recipes using Florida grapefruit which is the sweetest and juiciest variety of grapefruit!  Perfect for making dressings and a whole load of recipes I wouldn't have thought of.
First of all here we are, Helen, Michelle and myself segmenting a grapefruit.

I was quite pleased with my segments!

Then we watched Victoria making her winning cheesecake with Lisa as her helper.

Then we all sat down to a lovely dinner and the main dish 'Smoked chicken, avocado and Florida grapefruit salad' which was yummy!
    Print Recipe

Here is Lisa's recipe for Salmon Ceviche with cucumber chive and Florida grapefruit dressing:

 To serve 4 you will need:
400g salmon fillet - skinned and pin-boned and sliced as thin as possible.
Florida grapefruit
80ml extra virgin olive oil
40ml white wine vinegar
1 tablespoon of freshly chopped chives
1 cucumber
salt and pepper to season

Method:
Peel the cucumber, deseed and finely slice into ribbons
Segment the Florida grapefruit and dice
In a bowl, mix the oil, vinegar and then season.  Add the chives and stir.
Arrange the salmon, cucumber and grapefruit on a plate and pour over the dressing.  Serve straight away.
Congratulations to Victoria for her winning recipe!  And thank you to Lisa and Neil and his team for a great day.

Trudeau Mini Duo Salt and Pepper Grinder - Review

First impressions: What a lovely looking grinder!  The soft-touch casing did it for me.  For some strange reason it makes you want to keep picking it up! 
  The actual grinders are ceramic so they wont rust and as with most grinders it's wipe clean only.
The Trudeau grinder comes pre-filled with 10g black pepper and 24g of course sea salt.
It's also really easy to refill - just lift off the top to reveal two lift up flaps.
  When you're done, click the lid back on and away you go. 
 I'm totally impressed with look, feel and ease of use.
Just turn the top to the left for pepper and to the right for salt.
The grinder is small but not silly small and great for taking camping or on a picnic, but big enough for everyday use.
It's available in three trendy colours, pink, lime green and black.
Available from independent cook-shops. 
Thank you to Pam for sending me one - I love it!

Friday, 6 April 2012

Mozzarella and Parmesan Crispy Potatoes

Crispy edged potatoes, soft on the inside.  Topped with Mozzarella and Parmesan and nicely seasoned with a sprinkling of smoked Paprika. What's not to like?
Yes once again I'm using a disposable foil tray as it makes the job so much easier.  You can of course re-use them as I do - just pop them into the dishwasher or soak for a good while.

Thursday, 5 April 2012

Two Greedy Italians Eat Italy - Book Review

They've done it again, Antonio Carluccio and Gennaro Contaldo have written yet another great book!
 Anyone with an interest in Italy and its food will be sure to love this hardback book.  Full of all things delicious, great photography and lots of information on various places from Rome to the citrus orchards in Amalfi.  
You'll find easy to make recipes such as this Beef and Wine soup that looks so lovely and creamy and can be made in just a few minutes!
And I'm loving the look of this Pumpkin risotto:
 Or how about Sardinian Pasta with Mussels?
 Pizza and pasta recipes and of some great dessert recipes too. The Orange Rice Cake sounds quite interesting and I might have to make that as soon as.

I'm thinking the book could have done with a ribbon book mark being included in the spine as there are so many nice recipes it would be good to have a bookmark or even two!
All in all I'm loving this book and can't wait to make a good few things from it.
Published by Quadrille Publishing and contains over 80 recipes - Two Greedy Italians Eat Italy can be purchased over at Amazon. 

 Also, series two of the BBC2 television program starts on April 19th.
 By the way, you can see my review on the Two Greedy Italians latest DVD here.

Thank you to Yvonne for sending me a copy to review.

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