Thursday, 7 July 2011

Royal Stamford Fizz

This is the name my friend and I have given to the cocktail we drank on Royal Wedding Day with cucumber sandwiches in my new house. We also drank it on a hen weekend recently along with enough wine and vodka to fill a small lake. You need:

Prosecco or champagne
Elderflower cordial
Mint leaves
Ice cubes
Wine glasses
Friends ;-)

I grated some cucumber into the glass underneath the ice the first time but you don't need it. Try it! Perfect for sunny days and bbqs with friends.

Balti Palak Aloo Dhal

One of the best places in Manchester for a Friday night dinner is Akbar's. The restaurant is always buzzing and you get massive naan breads served on a sort of tree to save space on the table.

We went for dinner at Akbar's recently and after the compulsory poppadoms and dips for starter I tried one of the vegetarian specialities for my main meal; Balti Palak Aloo Dhal. This a spinach, potato and lentil dish cooked to a traditional Balti recipe. It was bursting with flavour and more aromatic than spicy. Definitely worth trying.

After this and a couple of Tiger beers (and a G&T in the White Lion) we managed to roll ourselves to the tram stop and home.

Chestnut Mushroom & Spinach Soup

Mmmm doesn't this look tasty? Well maybe not but despite the dodgy colour it was actually really nice and filling. For this quick, mid-week, golf-widow tea I used a box of chestnut mushrooms, an onion, a garlic clove, a large handful of spinach, veggie stock and a slug of cream. Nice with chunks of Tesco olive and tomato bread whilst watching Ronnie get sent daaaan in Eastenders.

Saturday, 2 July 2011

Triple S Sandwich

The name of this post does not come from using three ingredients beginning with the letter S. It comes from what this sandwich reminds me and my husband of: Saturdays as a Student in Sheffield.

In the final year of uni in Sheffield my husband lived just off Ecclesall Road directly behind Nonna's. In fact when we last visited they had extended Nonna's and made the old student house into what is now the deli. Great location as you used to get the aroma of all the cooking coming straight into the bathroom of the house.

Anyway I used to go to Sheffield from Manchester most Friday nights and Saturdays generally used to involve getting up around brunch time, going for a walk along Ecky Road and getting the most amazing turkey and bacon club sandwich from Spoilt for Choice. If the weather was nice we'd cop a spot in the Botanical Gardens, eat and mmmm mmm our way through them.

Our new life in Hale has a bit of an Ecky Road/Hunters Bar type of feel about it. So I made these sandwiches for lunch today as a memory marker.

I used Tesco's Finest oak smoked bacon, Finest roast turkey, avacado, tomato, lettuce and mayonnaise. Perfect with a mug of Twinings sitting in the sunshine listening to the birds sing and smelling the laundry on the line.