Prawn Pomodoro Linguini with Creme Fraiche

I love vegetables but I also love prawns, especially in pasta with tonnes of garlic. This dish is light and perfect for summer dining on the deck!

Make sure you buy good, happy prawns, your tummy will benefit and so will the sea!

Prawn Linguini

You will need:

  • 450g tomatoes
  • 1 red chilli
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 glug worcestershire
  • 1 clove garlic
  • linguini
  • bag of fresh or frozen prawns
  • 1 tsp creme fraiche
  • Fresh basil to garnish

1) Slice up the tomatoes and place them in a large pan with a glug of oil to start stewing. Add the sugar, the red chilli, the worcestershire sauce and the clove of garlic and simmer intill the skins start to come away from the tomatoes.

2) Boil a large pan of water and add your linguini. Boil for 12 mins.

3) Meanwhile, add your prawns to the tomatoes in the pan and cook until pink if they are frozen, if not cook for about 3-5 mins.

Prawn Linguini

Prawn Linguini

4) Drain your pasta and serve with a generous helping of prawns and tomatoes, stir though a teaspoon of creme fraiche and garnish with fresh basil.

Bon apetit mon petit pois!

Prawn Linguini

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Twice Baked Sweet Potato Skins

Ok I lied. I only baked them once because I am a big lover of the microwave at the moment. Don’t judge, its quick and I like to think it uses less electricity…

It doesn’t really matter though because they still tasted like sweet bowls of amazingess.

I’m sure you have all come across potato skins before, however they are likely “cook from frozen”, covered in plastic cheese and bacon pieces. My potato skins are healthier, yummier and not covered in bacon pieces. Plus as you know, I am a big fan of sweet potatoes, especially in the form of wedges. Saying that, you could just as easily use a regular joe potato and I am sure these will taste just as good.

You can pretty much put anything you like on these, but mine are sour cream and chive, with spinach and lots of bubbly melty cheese.

You will need:

  • Sweet potato
  • Spring onion
  • 1 clove of galric
  • handfull of spinach
  • 2 tablespoons of sour cream/ greek yoghurt
  • lots of cheeeeeeeese

1) Bake your tatty! Or cheat and microwave it for 10 mins. Sweet potato skins are more sugary and harder to crisp up, so it doesn’t actually make much difference if its baked or zapped in the microwave. Once it is cooked, leave it so it is cool enough to handle, then cut it in half and scoop out all of its mushy insides. Be careful to leave the skin in tact so that you can refill it later and make your potato whole again.

2) Fry off your spring onion, garlic and spinach before adding your potato squidge for a few minutes. Then pop it all in a bowl and mix in the sour cream.

 

 

 

3) Now all you need to do is refill the skins with your mix and top them with cheese. Put them in the oven at about 200 degrees for 15 minutes.

 

Other ideas for potato stuffings could be:

  • Brie and cranberry (and bacon if you eat it)
  • Greek style- feta, tomatoes and olives
  • Pizza style- Mozzarella and tomato
  • Hawaiian- Cheese and pineapple
  • Cheese. Just lots and lots of cheese.

In my hungover state that is all I can think of right now… But please send me all your ideas! These are so easy and quick I think I will be cooking them a lot more often!

Confessions of a cycling hypocrite

If you had met me just 2 years ago, you would have known that I was pretty sure I was adopted. Kinda.

My whole family were heavily into cycling, we would go on holidays with the intention of spending our days on a bike in the forest, and my dad spends more time and money on his bikes than he does on the car, which barely gets a hoover or a hose down once a year. He has done a 4 day cycle from John O Groats to Lands End, and he, my mum and my brother have cycled from London to Paris.

If you had met me 2 years a go, the chances of me accompanying them on these ventures was nil. “I’ll sit in the van with snacks and water for you” I would say. “Cycling is not my thing, why would you cycle with no purpose, but to just… cycle?”

At least that is what I thought. Until I, the self confessed King Stinge, decided paying for the bus to uni was not on, and got on a bike. Little did I know I had just opened a whole new can of worms.

I’m not exaggerating when I say I hated cycling. One time we went mountain biking at Thetford Forest and I cried tears of misery and pain around the whole of the Blue run. I barely even cheered up when I ate lunch in the cafe, which if I am honest was the only reason I agreed to cycle with them in the first place. I would moan of having a bottom so bruised it had turned black, and complain that if I kept cycling I would end up with legs like Chris Hoy, never find a husband because of them, and die alone in my old house while my 10 cats nibbled at my huge muscly legs.

K.O’ed after a leg munching sesh?

This year however, I have agreed to not just cycle on holiday, but cycle to our holiday. We are cycling to Lands End in Cornwall. For fun. Then we will travel to Polzeath (where I used to spend all my summers and love way too much) and stay there for a week. U turn is not even the phrase! My endless rants about cycling for no reason and refusing to get on a saddle have been completely undermined and I am a hypocrite. Meanwhile Papa Smole can sit there smugly as I confess I have been Smolenized and now enjoy cycling. Gah.

Madness

So why the sudden change of heart? Not sure. I guess in the last 2 years being at University has opened my mind to new things, made me meet new people and made me grow up a bit. Cycling has even become a way of getting out the house for some fresh air, not just a mode of transport for University.

Last year my bike, which was too expensive, got stolen from University despite it being tied up. I don’t think I’ve been that angry before, and I even refused to go into uni for a few days because I could not do so on my beloved bike! I really was gutted. The sun shone the next day, but I couldn’t go out on a little bike ride to enjoy it! So I bought a £30 second hand, battered bike off the back of the van. I called it the Fire Bolt. (Yes that is a Harry Potter reference)

The brakes didn’t work, and every time I changed gear my chain fell off. What is worse is it tended to fall off in the most dangerous places. Once in the middle of a busy roundabout and once in the middle of a very busy light controlled T junction. Each time I was left spinning my legs round extremely fast like an idiot, but going absolutely nowhere. Meanwhile cars would zoom past me, beep at me and generally make me feel like I was about to die. Several times I went flying through red lights (I don’t recommend it) because my breaks didn’t work.

Bike hospital. A desperate attempt to salvage The Bolt

Despite this, I still loved cycling. And the more I did it, the more I enjoyed it.

Over summer I started doing exactly what I hated before, going on long bike rides, in a loop from A to A, just for fun. Me and my mum would cycle about 20 miles, just because. I even went and watched the mountain biking at the Olympics, and loved it. What happend to me!?

Now, in one last final blow to any integrity I may still have regarding sticking to my beliefs about cycling, I am going to tell you to get on a bike to. Because it’s fun. And because it’s cheaper than getting a bus, and greener, and because you might discover you really enjoy it!

Me and Susie Q post ride clad in lycra

 

Fumble

Pudding is a must for me, whether it’s a fruit salad or a giant hunk of chocolate fudge cake, it is a mandatory follow on from all meals. Unless I’m going out… in which case a cocktail is much more suited.

This ones great for summer, and can be mixed up in anyway you like to suit you. Make it healthy, unhealthy but whatever you do make it tastey.

Fumble is essentially a cold crumble. The recipe was found by my Grandma in The Guardian, and made by my mum as a traditional cold strawberry crumble, but I just can’t get enough of Fumble. I’ve found that once you have made the Fumble it’s so easy to whip up a different pudding in no time.

Fumble and Natural yoghurt. Just one fumble variation
Keep your Fumble supply in a tin for up to 2 weeks!

Here is the basic recipe, the rest is down to you!

  1. 225g plain flour
  2. 200g unsalted butter, fridge cold and cut into cubes (fridge cold is important!)
  3. 150g demerara sugar
  4. 100g oats
  5. Teaspoon of cinnamon

1) Set the oven to 180c

2) Throw all the ingredients into a bowl and use your fingers to rub in the butter to the dry stuff until you have a crumb like consistency.

3) Squidge into clumps and lay on baking parchement in a tray. Evenly spread the lumps and bake for 25 mins.

That is all it takes to get the canvas for your next month of puddings. This crumbley fumbley topping goes with just about anything. I had it with rasberries and natural yoghurt, for a heathy(ish) way to end my meal.

yum
Fumble, berries and natural yoghurt.

but here are some more exciting ideas. The way I see it each fumble variation needs Fumble (obv.) A moist maker (as joey might say) and a little extra something. Pick and choose, mix and match from the list below.

Moist makers:

Fruit yoghurt, greek yoghurt, ice-cream, angel delight, jelly, custard, whipped cream, cream.

Extra something-somethings:

Banana, berries, chocolate chunks, malteasers, toffee/strawberry/chocolate sauce, maple syrup, sprinkles.

Then add fumble

These lists are by no means exhaustive. If you come up with a creative pudding with your fumble please share it with me! Search your cupboards and see what you can do.