An Amazing Loaf Of Bread

This recipe is NOT one of mine – but I am totally bowled over by it. It is delicious, infinitely adaptable, has incredible keeping qualities (just consider any adaptations). It is so satisfying and a little slice can be wrapped in a napkin and tucked into a pocket to keep you going all day with put having to resort to poorly made, ill thought through snacks that claim much but are made without knowledge or consideration.

This couldn’t be easier ……

…..make it yourself……

….. you’ll save more than money …

….. reclaim yumminess one recipe at a time!

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This is from ‘My New Roots’ By Sarah Britton. The book is full of great recipes that you’ll use every day 🙂

1 cup/140g sunflower seeds

1/2 cup 90g linseeds

1/2 cup 70g almonds

1 1/2 cups 150g gluten free oats

2 tbsp chia seeds

4 tbsp psyllium husks

1 tsp sea salt

1 tbsp maple syrup

3 tbsp coconut oil

Use a 500g or 1lb silicon loaf pan. If its not silicon then use a strip of parchment along the base to make removal easier later.

This can be made in the loaf tin/pan.

In a bowl (or the loaf pan)  mix the dry ingredients

Whisk the wet in a jug and then stir into the dry.

Allow to stand on the side for the minimum of 3 hours and up to 12.

Preheat the oven to Gas 4/ 180•C / 350•F

Bake for 20 minutes on the middle self (I had to bake mine for twice as long as I made additions and adaptations – so just bear that in mind)

Tip the half baked loaf onto a metal tray and put it back into the oven for another 40 minutes. Until the loaf starts to sound hollow when tapped.

It should totally be left to go cold before you slice it like the inventor says … But i couldn’t resist a warm slice with fresh sliced pear and a drizzle of tahini … I know, I’m so predictable!

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The adaptation on this loaf was 1 tbsp vanilla powder (make this by grinding a vanilla pod in a coffee grinder) 3 tbsp date syrup 3 tbsp of fennel seeds, 3 tbsp blueberries. 3 tbsp cranberries, 3 tbsp mulberries, 3 tbsp dried sour cherries, 3 tbsp golden raisins and I used hazelnuts

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The adaptation on this loaf was 1 tbsp sesame seeds 3 tbsp of caraway seeds, a cup of green olives, a cup of sun dried tomatoes 1 tbsp oregano.


Come and see me on Saturdays’ at Bermondsey Square Farmers Market in Southwark. It’s just off Tower Bridge Road, a short walk from The White Cube, Southbank and Borough Market.

email me

phone or text 0792 310 9170



Super Easy Tasty Bread

I don’t even try to make any sort of baked bread to sell commercially anymore as my kitchen is simply not set up for it. Sometimes I’m making raw foods, or chocolates and I don’t have the space.

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That doesn’t mean I don’t like bread and I want to be able to eat it but the stuff in supermarkets and sold by most bakers will do horrible things to my stomach. So when I want some bread to eat invariably I end up making it.

I know it sounds like a massive faff – but I have been doing this for over 30 years now and once you have your head set that this is how it will be done then you kinda just do it. Admittedly, a freezer bigger than an icebox would be great – but even that isn’t essential.

Straight away I will direct you to my sourdough starter recipe on here

Once this is fully on its way I freeze it. I then take it out the day before I’m baking and get it going again by adding more flour and water and I keep it going until the baking has been completed and then back into the freezer it goes until next time. It doesn’t let me down.

If you don’t want to use a starter then use 7 g of dried yeast, in a jug with a little date syrup and  warm water to activate it.

The addition of khorasan flour and spelt flour as well as sesame, sunflower, pumpkin and hemp seeds in this bread makes an extremely tasty and nutritious loaf.


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Makes 4 x 1lb loaves – which sounds like a lot – but I always use one and freeze the others asap so they still have that out of the oven freshness when I need to use them. I just don’t have time to go through this process that often.

7 oz of your sourdough starter or
7 g dried yeast (this comes in a little sachet or its a heaped teaspoonful)  in 200ml water water and 1 tsp date syrup or another natural sweetener
100g a bread flour that you like – but one with wheat
450g spelt wholemeal flour
450g khorasan flour
1.5 tbsp fine seasalt
200g sesame more for the tin
200g sunflower seeds
200g pumpkin seeds
 100g hemp seeds
50 ml olive, hemp or flax seed oil
another 700ml of warm water
I honestly don’t think this could be simpler.
Either add the 200ml of warm water to the 7g of yeast or the 7 oz of starter you want the yeast to ‘bloom’ – it goes nice and frothy and smells like something you’d like to eat.
Mix the starter to slacken it.
Put the flours into a capacious bowl (I do use a stand mixer now as I have other things to do).
Add the yeast/starter and the other 700 ml of water (500ml if you are hand mixing) and start by slowly mixing it and then either give it a full 20 minutes of kneading by hand and 5 minutes on the highest speed on your stand mixer.
Cover with a damp cloth or cling film and leave it in a warm spot to get going. It is entirely up to you how long you leave it. You could leave it for a couple of hours or you can leave it for 24 hours.
Now add the seasalt, oil and the seeds as it needs to be knocked back (a good kneading) for a couple of minutes.
If you are making the bread on a stand mixer the bread should be a soft- almost pourable dough – that is correct.
Grease and flour your bread tins.
Divide the dough equally between the tins.
Set your oven to Gas 8 230˚C 450˚F
Stand the tins in a warm place and cover with a damp t towel.
Give it 40 – 50 minutes and it should fill the tins or double in size. Allow it to double in size. If its cold in your house it will take longer.
Once its double put the t towel in for a wash and put the tins into the oven – 2 at the top, and 2 in the middle.
Allow them 30 minutes then swap the levels over.
Give it another 20 minutes and check that they are cooked.
Turn them out of the tin and give them 10 minutes before you cut them.
I bet they are good enough for you to happily eat them just plain!

Come and see me on Saturdays’ at Bermondsey Square Farmers Market in Southwark. It’s just off Tower Bridge Road, a short walk from The White Cube, Southbank and Borough Market.

email me

phone or text 0792 310 9170


Custard Cream Biscuits (Gluten & Wheat Free, Dairy Free)

I am very lucky to have been able to stay with my partner for a long time without either of us actually having to kill the other. Which is a good thing generally, as I think that is illegal.

But the truth is that when you live with one person for that long there are more than one or two near misses (I am so near perfect that he is only ever delighted to find me still living and breathing each morning 😀 )


Anyway beyond that – having been together for so long, you do notice things about eachother. For example, he knows that I love raspberries the best in Blighty, blackberries the best in Italy, but mostly I love eating apples. And I know that he could live on nothing other than Custard Cream Biscuits. It was Fathers Day (gee thanks Hallmark Cards) in England yesterday and I thought it would be lovely to make a few really nice fresh ones for him. Traditional but using the best ingredients that I can find and not adding in any weird stuff.

I do use Custard Powder, so have a look just to check that you can find a simple one. You only need to find one with Cornflour, Sugar, Vanilla, Salt and the colour Annatto. I’m not going to stress about Annatto. If you want to know more then read this But it is perfectly fine 🙂

If you want to avoid Custard Powder then make up your own simple version with 2/3 Cornflour + 1/3 sugar, a pinch of salt and a splash of vanilla extract.


I also have a lovely girlie that cannot eat gluten, so I made these gluten free, so she could enjoy them too. As you can see from the look on her beautiful face – she thoroughly enjoyed them 🙂

I have to admit …. I snaffled a few myself 😀

Custard Creams

Makes about 10 lovely big biscuits

For the biscuits:
225g / 7 oz Gluten & Wheat Free plain flour blend
60g / 2 oz of custard powder
30g / 1 oz of icing sugar
210g/ 7 oz sunflower margarine (not the spreadable stuff) at room temperature and diced
1 egg lightly beaten to break it up
1/2 tsp vanilla paste
1/2 tsp sea salt

For the filling:
120g / 4oz sunflower margarine (not the spreadable stuff) at room temperature and diced
420g / 14oz icing sugar, sifted
6 tbsp custard powder

Sift together the flour, custard powder, icing sugar and sea salt and add into the bowl of a food processor with the margarine.
Start to run the machine on the 2:4 speed (half speed – whatever that is on your machine).
Through the feed tube add the egg and the vanilla.
Now turn the machine up and blitz for about 30 seconds.
It will look like a dry crumbly mixture.
Tip out onto a large piece of cling film. And press it so it all sticks together, cover and chill for about 10 minutes.

Line your baking trays with baking parchment.
Preheat your oven to 180˚C/350˚F/ Gas 4.

Gluten free pastries need a little of a different sort of loving care to wheaten pastry. But take your time and if you have any questions then just ask 😀


Lightly flour the work surface with more gluten free flour blend.
Start by pressing the dough with your hand and encourage the edges to not split apart. Get it as close to 1cm thick as you can.


Once you are there roll the dough to 1/2 cm thickness (or perhaps a little thick is good too).
Stamp out rounds with an 8cm round cutter – or a glass or a cup.
Or make really teeny ones and use an egg cup to make them – but keep them thick so you get a real Cartoonish looking final product.
I pressed another cutter (a heart shaped one) about 1/4 of the way through the top to make a nice finish, but there is no need, you can just prick over with a fork instead, or use the tip of a sharp knife to make smiley face perhaps 😀


Place onto the baking trays.
As these contain no gluten there is absolutely no point in chilling them before baking – unless of course you are living in a very hot country and the fat has obviously started to melt in which case you can chill then for 10 minutes.
Otherwise – bang then into the oven and bake them for 10 minutes – until just beginning to colour around the edges, and when you touch the edge of the biscuit you can sense ‘firm’.
Leave these on the trays cool for 15 -20 minutes. Then transfer to a rack that can go into the fridge and firm up some more -these are super tender biscuits 🙂

For the filling, just tip all of the ingredients into the bowl of a stand mixer.
Beat for a good 10 minutes until smooth and fluffy, adding a bit of water if you think it needs it.
Get a good dessertspoonful and spread onto one of the cooled biscuits right up to the edge – do not try pressing the biscuits to spread the mixture – they will break 🙂


And then top with another biscuits.


Pop directly into expectant ‘Father’ and Daughter No2’s expectant mouths 🙂
If you need to store them then pop in a lidded container in the fridge.


Sweet Potato Cakes with Dill (Vegan) Great For Meatless Monday’s and Frugal Feeding

What a mad couple of weeks. Daughter No1 is home from Uni and Daughter No2 has been sitting her SATS and the sun has come out …. finally! All the garden has gone mad and I have had to get all my plants, seedlings and seeds in while the going was good. And … AND I invested in 4 little poly tunnels as I really need some of the plants to get big enough to eat 🙂

The other thing is that the Metropolitan police have taken nearly 8 weeks to go to Bermondsey Square to look at the CCTV footage of my bag being nicked and ….. surprise surprise – it’s been taped over (Grrrr)

So I still have no camera and I am using Daughter No2’s ipod to take piccy’s and I am sorry that they are not very good.


But these cakes go down really well at the market, in our house, as foodie gifts to friends – just lovely.

And someone has asked for the recipe …. soooooo….

I hope you love them

Sweet Potato Cakes with Dill
make about 36
450g / 1lb Self Raising Flour
2 tsp baking powder
450g / 1lb Sweet potatoes peeled cut into 2 cm cubes
120g/ 4 oz Waxy potatoes (Estima, Nicola, Wilja, Melody), peeled cut into 1.5 cm cubes
120g / 4 oz carrots peeled cut into 1 cm slices
2 white onions peeled and quartered
125ml / 1/4 pt lemon juice
grated zest of the lemon
4 tsp dried dill
2 tsp dried parsley
1 tsp Sea salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
300ml / 1/2 pt sunflower oil (as needed)

Sift the together the flour, baking powder, dill, parsley, pepper and salt

Boil the sweet potatoes, potatoes, onions and carrots together in a pan of salted water for 15–20 minutes until soft.
Drain well.
Tip into a food processor and run on high speed to make a very smooth paste.
Add into the flour mix and add the seasoning and the liquid. It wants to be fairly stiff but still a dropping consistency.
I suggest you check for seasoning now and add more lemon or salt, dill – make it how you like.
Heat the oil in a heavy based frying pan over a medium heat.
Use an ice cream scoop or a tablespoon to scoop up the cakes, add them straight into the hot oil as you scoop.
It should take 2-3 minutes to brown to a nice golden colour, don’t let it go any faster otherwise they won’t be cooked through. Any slower and they will just absorb all the oil.
Turn them to cook the other side.
As they cook pop them onto a warm plate with kitchen roll on to absorb the excess oil.
These can be served as an accompaniment to other food but we had them with this lovely Cardamon Dahl Daughter No1 gave me the recipe for 🙂

May I suggest you have a look at her blog too 🙂

Frugal Feast, Gorgeous Green, Super Simple, Meatless Monday

Just a quicky – cheapy- nutritious – delicious dish.


This brings together the sweet and salty with the mellow and sharp, perhaps not to everybodies taste, but I like those contrasts.

Get yourself down to the market and you will save yourself a fortune. Have a look here

However I concede that some trendy food markets are more expensive than shops. I popped into Borough Market yesterday and they were charging £26/Kg for Medjool dates and they were nowhere near as good as the ones I bought on my local food market.

Everyone says they are broke, so let’s save money and eat really well too


Frugal Feast, Gorgeous Green, Super Simple, Meatless Monday

2 heads of Calabrese
1 large Sweet potato
3 cloves of garlic
1 dssp rosemary
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
125 ml olive oil
1 tbsp tomato paste
500g Penne Pasta
12 -15 leaves of fresh basil, washed and torn.


Pre heat the oven to a furnace like 475˚F/240˚C/Gas 9.

Wash the Calabrese and cut into thumb sized ‘trees’.

Peel the sweet potato and cut into 1- 1.5 cm cubes.

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Place the potato onto a baking sheet and add the Rosemary, a slick of the olive oil , the vinegar and a sprinkle of sea salt.


Roast for about 15 minutes, shaking and turning the pieces once every 5 minutes. You want them nice and caramalised on the outside.

Cook the Calabrese in salted boiling water for 5 minutes, so it is softened but not totally collapsing.

Cook the pasta as instructed on the packet.

Peel the garlic and crush in a press.

Once the Calabrese is cooked, drain it, refresh with cold water, drain and set to the side.

Remove the sweet potato from the oven and set to one side.

Drain the pasta and save 125 ml of the pasta water. Leave the pasta to one side.


Add the remaining olive oil to the now empty pasta pan and quickly cook the garlic for maybe 30 seconds to a minute – just enough to take away the acrid bite of the garlic.

Add the tomato paste and cook for a few seconds. NAd the basil, just to wilt it.

Add the reserved pasta water, bring up to the boil.

Add in the pasta, the potatoes and the Calabrese, the basil and mix with little pity so that the green and the orange of the vegetables starts to break down around the pasta.


This is delicious.

Come and see me on Saturdays’ at Bermondsey Square Farmers Market in Southwark. It’s just off Tower Bridge Road, a short walk from The White Cube, Southbank and Borough Market.
All new customers will get a lovely washable cotton shopper as a ‘Thank you and please come again next week’ (Whie stocks last!)

Every Friday at about 6 pm GMT I publish photos of the items I have cooked for market. Have a look at the Facebook page.

email me
phone or text 0792 310 9170
or follow me on Twitter
Follow Me on Pinterest

Coconut Potato Curry For Frugal Feeding on Meatless Monday with a promise of Daisy Chain Dinners

This is an absolute favourite in our house. It is very savoury, nice and zippy on the taste buds, filling without being stodgy and good> And for all you meat eater, you will not even think about the fact it is meatless.

This recipe was born at a point in my life when I was seriously skint. I lived in a little terraced house and I made the tiny back garden really work for me. I grew my own herbs, carrots, tomatoes (I have wonderful memories of Daughter No1 getting up in the morning to climb over the grow bags of tomatoes strung up towards some overhead timber beams, as she feasted on a breakfast of freshly plucked tomatoes straight off the vines). I grew strawberries, apples, pears and I had an amazingly over enthusiastic Victoria plum tree -Daughter No1 would use a butterfly net to poke and prod and pull at the fruit to make them fall – she is made of plundered fruit and vegetables. How secretly delighted I was this October when she admitted to scrummping apples from some near by land to then spend the next month making apple crumbles, pies, cakes, cookies – I did try to sound cross 🙂

Actually, she Skyped me as I was photographing this and got very excited and made it for her house mates 🙂


At the time Creamed Coconut was super cheap, 19p a box, it now costs £1.39 a box, but it is still a really frugal meal. And …. AND it is really good for eating a day or two after you have made it – so Daisy Chain Dinners – ahoy!

The Engervita B12 is a great idea for real Vegans (and a cheap way to get B12), but if you eat across the diets then it is by no means essential. But I love the taste too.

I really hope you make this and enjoy it as much as we all do.
Coconut Potato Curry
serves 6 people


10 small – medium sized potatoes (waxy are best)
2 medium onions
4-5 small carrots
3 sticks of celery
2 eating apples
120g / 4oz creamed coconut
4-5 tbsp sunflower oil

440g/ 14 oz kidney beans
500g/ 1lb passata
2 tbsp curry powder (I like a Biryani for this)
1 tbsp brown sugar (optional)
1 bunch coriander
1.5 lt / 3 pt hot vegetable stock or water

2 dssp Engervita with B12 if you can find it. This is an excellent addition to your Vegan pantry.


Peel the vegetables but not the apples and cut them all into a 2 cm chunk.

Heat the oil in a large heavy based saucepan.
Add the vege, keep the heat as high as possible and allow the vegetables to start to brown.
Turn the heat to low and add the curry powder and stir, allow that 30 – 50 seconds to open the flavour.

Add the hot stock (be careful it will bubble up). The liquid needs to come up to the top most layer but not actually covering it. The vegetables will collapse somewhat as this cooks and you want a moist dish at the end – not a soup.

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Then add the coconut, passata, kidney beans, sugar (if you are using it) and turn the heat right up as you want to bring this to the boil now.

Once it is boiling turn the heat down to medium low, put a lid on and allow to cook for 10 -15 minutes (depending on your potatoes).

Add the coriander and stir.

It is ready to serve. If you want you can finish it with a teaspoon of the Engervita.


Come and see me on Saturdays’ at Bermondsey Square Farmers Market in Southwark. It’s just off Tower Bridge Road, a short walk from The White Cube, Southbank and Borough Market.
All new customers will get a lovely washable cotton shopper as a ‘Thank you and please come again next week’ (Whie stocks last!)

Every Friday at about 6 pm GMT I publish photos of the items I have cooked for market. Have a look at the Facebook page.

email me
phone or text 0792 310 9170
or follow me on Twitter
Follow Me on Pinterest

Russian Salad

I was going to blog the ‘Heaven Sent Hummus’ recipe today but I have been moved to give you this one instead.


As I have driven through the Suffolk countryside I’ve noticed that the roadside ‘eggs for sale’ have started to reappear. I grew up in a house where we had various animals and we had a lot of hens for eggs. They are so good and that got me thinking about the fact that it is ‘springtime’ and we would be starting to see the hens getting broody. I also noticed a distinct change in the quality of the eggs I use. The yolks are super firm and the whites are too. Of course that is too be expected because the fertility of the hen has kicked in.


When I was growing up my Mum and Dad just produced as much of the food as they possibly could. Our garden was covered in panes of glass over heeled in pieces of timber or corrugated iron to make cold frames to get as early a crop of garden fresh food as soon as possible. (In 1979 Dad did actually get a real glass green house, he was so happy).

One of the most delicious things that my Dad (yes read it and weep) would make was Russian salad. The first one would be made around about the end of May with the very first tiny, tender and so sweet peas, carrots, new potatoes and beetroot. And of course those lovely eggs – so fresh that once boiled it would be impossible to peel them.

The other thing he always did, and I have such a strong memory of this, is he would make the mayonnaise himself. He would sit himself on a ricky old wooden chair outside but in the shade. He always insisted it had to use a china basin, a wooden spoon, an egg yolk and good olive oil. It would make a thick (really thick) cream of a dusky, rusty, golden colour that he would then season with a pinch of salt and a teaspoon of malt vinegar. Once the salad was made it would be left in the cold pantry for all the flavours to develop and marry together.

I have told him I am blogging this recipe, I don’t think he really understand what I am on about he just says ‘Oh yes, very good dear. But when I showed him over Skype just the ingredients I have gathered he really smiled and guessed straight away what I was making. I have told him I want to photograph him making the ‘crema’. I’ll put them up once I have them.

Also the photo of the olive oil is of the olive juice (it is so good) that my cousin sends me over from Italy. If you want you can buy it in England in the food halls of Harrods, but I am including a link to their webpage for you to see if you can get hold of it nearer to you. It is worth the effort.


So I am including how to make the mayonnaise but made in a machine but with the good olive oil, you can use sunflower if you think it will be too expensive or too strong a flavour.

It was amazing.

Russian Salad
Feeds a party of 8 or 3 hungry Italian kids that had spent all day running all over the countryside.

4 lb Charlotte, Saxon (waxy) potatoes,
4 eggs, hard-boiled, finely diced (optional)

1 small red or white onion, finely diced

6 carrots
2 beetroot
240g /8 oz shelled fresh or frozen peas
8 cornichons
2 tsp dried or 2 tbsp fresh chopped dill


Boil the potatoes in their skins (about 15 – 20 minutes. Drain and cool in cold running water for a minute, then set them to one side for the skins to dry . Peel them and chop into large chunks (no smaller than 2 cm cubes at all, bigger is fine)


At the same time repeat the process with the carrots and beetroot.
Put the eggs into a pan of cold water, bring up to the boil and cook for 4 minutes then drain and plunge into cold water. Once cold shell them and cut into 2 cm chunks.


Cook the peas just as normal and cool in cold water straight away.
Run the knife through the cornichons to about 1/2 cm pieces. And dice the onion as small as you can manage.


That’s all the that ready. Pop it all into a nice large bowl for mixing.

To make the mayonnaise (in a food processor, so it needs to be a larger quantity, but if you can make it in a smaller amount then just divide it all by 2 or 4)
1 lt/2 pints Olive Oil
4 whole eggs
1 tbsp malt vinegar (or lemon juice or red wine, which you prefer or have to hand)
3/4 cup mayonnaise (low-fat, or a mixture of mayo and sour cream work great here)

a little salt to taste


Add the eggs into the processor bowl with the blade attachment (I have never used a whisk for this).
Set the machine running at it’s fastest speed and through the top feed tube start to very slowly, in a fine line, pour in the oil.


Take your time. At first you think it is not working. Keep the machine on the highest setting.


When you have added about 3/4 of the oil you will notice a distinct change in the sound of the mixture, it will almost be quacking at you. You can stop the machine and have a look, it will have become super thick and mayonnaise-y.


You can turn it on again and finish adding the oil, then the vinegar and salt.


Add 3/4 of the mayonnaise into the mixture and use a big metal spoon to mix it carefully. you don’t want to break it into tiny pieces.


Spoon it into your serving dish.


And coat the outside with the rest of the ‘crema’ and sprinkle with the dill.


Have a spoon to taste yourself now but leave it in a cool spot (a fridge is probably what most people will do) and let it sit for a minimum of 4 hours.

So simple to make and so really delicious, this is nothing like the stuff they sell you in the shops.


email me
phone or text 0792 310 9170
or follow me on Twitter
Follow Me on Pinterest

Come and see me on Saturdays’ at Bermondsey Square Farmers Market in Southwark. It’s just off Tower Bridge Road, a short walk from The White Cube, Southbank and Borough Market.
All new customers will get a lovely washable cotton shopper as a ‘Thank you and please come again next week’ (Whie stocks last!)

Every Friday at about 6 pm GMT I publish photos of the items I have cooked for market. Have a look at the Facebook page.