Category Archives: Lunch/ Savoury Snacks

Cheese & Marmite Palmiers

You will either love or hate these Cheese & Marmite Palmiers! Flaky puff pastry with the tasty flavours of cheese and Marmite – I am certainly in the love team!        

These Cheese & Marmite Palmiers will definitely not be for everyone. As the saying goes, you either love or hate Marmite and I am obviously in the love team. 

Cheese and Marmite are a classic combination. I remember my Dad making my sister and I Marmite and cream cheese sandwiches for school which we both loved. I must admit this isn’t a sandwich filling I tend to have very often anymore, but I did want to recreate the flavours.

We are hopefully going to be getting some more Spring-like weather now which means we can start enjoying picnics and eating outside. Picnics are a great British institution but unfortunately we don’t always have the weather to make the most of them! These Cheese & Marmite Palmiers make a great snack for lunch and are easily portable if the weather does stay good enough for a picnic!

You can use whichever cheddar you prefer, but if you would like my recommendation it would be extra mature cheddar. It has a delicious saltiness which works really well with the Marmite and will make it very hard for you to stop eating them!

I first made these using a silicone baking mat – don’t! The butter mixed with the Marmite seeps out as you would expect during cooking and the silicone mat stops this draining away from the palmiers and means they sit in a puddle of butter. As delicious as this may sounds, it stops them from becoming deliciously crisp. So make sure you just spray a baking tray with oil and you will have perfect palmiers!

These palmiers are homemade and I don’t think there is anything wrong with them looking that way. Not all of mine had the perfect palmier shape but they still looked good and they definitely tasted yummy!

Makes 24 

375g puff pastry, ready rolled 
100g cheddar, grated 
40g butter, softened
2 tsp Marmite
1 tbsp milk 
Spray oil 

  1. Unroll the pastry and using a rolling pin, roll until it is 2-3mm thick keeping it on the baking paper it comes with 
  2. Make sure your butter is very soft – you might need to put it in the microwave for 20 seconds so that it is really soft but not melted. Mix the butter with the Marmite until it is a smooth paste

  1. Spread the Marmite paste across the pastry and then sprinkle with the grated cheese

  1. Starting from the long end closest to you, tuck the pastry over as tight as you can. Then using the baking paper roll the rest of the pastry to the middle of the pastry sheet

  1. Then repeat with the other long end to the two sides of the pastry meet in the middle 

  1. Leave to chill in the fridge for 10 minutes 
  2. Preheat the oven to 190ºC fan assisted (170ºC non fan) and spray 2 trays with oil 
  3. Take the pastry out of the fridge and slice into rounds around 1cm in thickness
  4. Place the pinwheels on the oiled baking trays and brush with the milk or egg 

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Chicken & Chorizo Nachos

These Chicken & Chorizo Nachos are packed full of delicious flavours. Crispy tortilla chips covered in melted cheese with heat from the chilies topped with my rich and tasty Slow Cooker Chicken & Chorizo Stew. 

My Slow Cooker Chicken & Chorizo Stew has been one of my most popular recipes since I added it to my blog. It is so simple to make and packed with such tasty flavours that I can see why people like it so much. 

As when you make my Slow Cooker Chicken & Chorizo Stew, you can make a larger batch; I thought using it in another dish was a great way to make the most out of it. I thought the flavours in the stew would go perfectly as a topping to delicious cheese covered nachos. 

Nachos aren’t fancy or complicated, but they are very tasty! Whether you enjoy them as a starter, main dish or even as a snack whilst watching a film they always feel like a bit of a treat to me. 


You will probably have your own preferred way of making nachos so please feel free to adapt my recipe below. If I left Mr Curly in charge of making these I would worry that he might use a whole block of cheese. Feel free to use more or less cheese depending on your preferences. 

The jalapenos can also be added to your preference. I have only just found a love for jalapenos and used to leave them on the side of my plate when I ordered nachos thinking they would be too spicy. I think my spice tolerance has definitely increased over the years which is why recently I braved trying one. I’m now a bit hooked and buy the hottest ones I can find to test myself. Yes I like to live on the edge! My Dad would be so proud of me because the hotter the better in his opinion. 

Obviously you can leave out the jalapenos if you just want the subtle chile in the Chicken & Chorizo Stew to flavour the dish. I also used a pointed sweet pepper honestly just because I thought it was pretty. So you can obviously use a normal pepper if you aren’t being so superficial. 

The condiments you serve with these Chicken & Chorizo Nachos are very important. In my opinion you have to have soured cream and a salsa always works nicely. Unfortunately I haven’t taught myself to like Guacamole yet but this would work really well. Check out my sister’s Guacamole recipe here. 

Serves 2 – 4

1 bag of lightly salted tortilla chips (approx 200g)
1 pointed sweet pepper
Sliced jalapenos in brine
110g cheese, grated
Half portion of Slow Cooker Chicken & Chorizo Stew

To serve
Soured cream
Salsa
Guacamole

  1.  Preheat the oven to 180ºC
  2. Grate the cheese using a coarse grater and finely slice the pepper
  3. Use an oven proof dish that will allow for 2-3 layers of tortilla chips. Scatter roughly one third of the bag of the tortilla chips across the bottom of the dish 
  4. Then scatter over roughly one third of the grated cheese followed by some of the pepper and as many jalapenos as you would like 

  1. Repeat until you have used up all of the tortillas making sure your last layer is cheese 

  1. Put in the oven for 10-15 minutes until golden and the cheese has melted

  1. While the nachos are in the oven, heat through the Chicken & Chorizo Stew if it isn’t already hot
  2. Once the nachos are nice and golden brown, spoon over the Chicken & Chorizo Stew and add soured cream, salsa and guacamole to your preference 

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Pasilla Pork Tacos

Who doesn’t love tacos? My Pasilla Pork Tacos are simple to make but are packed with delicious authentic Mexican flavours. 

 
My love of Mexican food is no secret, neither is my love of pork. So a recipe that combines the both had to be delicious.

My go-to Mexican recipe book is by Margarita Carrillo Arronte called Mexico: The Cookbook. It has hundreds of authentic Mexican recipes from all over Mexico. As they are authentic recipes, they tend to use ingredients that are more readily available in Mexico and America. They can also be quite lengthy recipes that although I don’t mind spending hours in the kitchen, others may not!

I have adapted a recipe called ‘Pork in chile marinade’ to make it easier and also to make it a tasty taco filling.  A lot of Mexican recipes say to toast the whole dried chiles, then soak them in boiling water. Then to blitz them up in a liquidiser before passing them through a sieve. Ignoring the fact that this can be a little time consuming, it also requires you to have the whole chiles which aren’t readily available here in the UK. I’m sure if you live in Mexico or parts of America you can get hole of these without any problems at all, but that isn’t the case here! 

With that in mind, I decided to use pasilla chile powder instead. You can buy this online from Mexican suppliers such as Cool Chile Co, or even Amazon if you can’t get it in your supermarket. I have noticed that supermarkets are expanding their Mexican products which is fantastic news! 

Pasilla chiles are really great for this recipe because the flavour goes particularly well with red meat, oregano and garlic. If you really didn’t want to buy pasilla chile powder, you could whatever chile powder you do have, but I really would recommend using pasilla chile powder. You can also use it in other recipes of mine such as Mexican Eggs and Chile Con Carne. 

I love oregano in general, but Mexican oregano is especially tasty as it has a citrus note to it. Again, you can use normal oregano for this recipe and you probably wouldn’t notice too much of a difference. 

You really do need to use corn tortillas in my opinion. They add a delicious subtle corn flavour to the dish which goes so well with the pork. If you don’t want to use pork, you could make these with beef. Corn tortillas are now readily available in most large supermarkets – and not even just in the Mexican foods section! Only a few years ago I remember the only place you could get these being in the Mexican section of the ethnic food aisle. They were only made by one brand and came in one size. Now you can find them with the rest of the tortilla wraps in the bread aisle and come in a variety of sizes!

For these tacos I would recommend the medium or small sized tortillas because if you get much bigger than that you may as well call these a fajita! Always use the soft corn tortillas and not those crisp shells which are Tex Mex and not Mexican. I think if you showed those to a Mexican person they may laugh in your face if you said they were a taco. 

These Pasilla Pork Tacos are great as a tasty lunch, dinner or even a starter. If you use the medium sized tortillas, you will be able to make 10 generous filled tacos. For a starter, I would recommend using small tortillas which would make a lot more. 

I like to serve these with my Mexican Sweetcorn Salad and a scattering of spring onions. 

Makes 10 tacos 

700g pork shoulder steaks
½ tbsp pasilla chile powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp Mexican oregano
2 tsp cider vinegar
2 tsp sunflower oil 
1 tsp water
10 corn tortillas

  1. Mix together the chile powder, garlic powder, salt, oregano, cider vinegar, 1 tsp oil and water to form a paste

  1. Coat the pork in the spice paste and leave to marinate for at 1 – 3 hours

 

  1. Heat the other tsp of sunflower oil in a large frying pan over a medium high heat. Cook the pork for 10-15 minutes on each side until browned and crisp in places and cooked through

  1. Remove the pork from the pan and slice thinly
  2. Serve in corn tacos with my Mexican Sweetcorn Salad and spring onions 

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Turkey & Cranberry Sausage Rolls

Crispy puff pastry filled with the flavours of Christmas. Delicious as a light lunch or as a nibble to serve to guests at a party, these Turkey & Cranberry Sausage Rolls are really easy which is good because after you’ve made them once, you’ll be asked to make them again and again.  

Christmas wouldn’t be the same without sausage rolls in my opinion. My Mum made them for as long as I can remember at Christmas and they have always been very popular in my family. This meant that when I moved out, I carried on the tradition much to Mr Curly’s delight as he is a very big fan. 

I love traditional sausage rolls made with pork sausage meat, but I also like the idea of making slight tweaks to make them more exciting. One variation that my Mum makes uses pork sausage meat with a fresh slice of mango. This might not sound like it would be delicious, but believe me it is. 

When thinking about flavours I associate with Christmas, turkey and cranberry sauce obviously came to mind. Turkey isn’t usually my favourite choice of meat to have as a roast because it can be a little bland. I do like using turkey mince in dishes that I can add lots of flavour to as it is a healthy meat option because it is low in fat. In large supermarkets I have noticed that you can now buy turkey breast or thigh mince.

My preference would always be the thigh mince because it has a little bit more fat than the breast which I think adds flavour and helps keep it moist. However I ran out of time and did a home delivery for these ingredients and they only had turkey breast mince. I thought that was an advantage though because if it was tasty with the breast mince, it would be even more tasty with the thigh mince!

As I mentioned previously, turkey can be a bit bland which means it really welcomes flavours to be added to it. Don’t be afraid to add lots of herbs and seasoning to your mince because it will make the end result tastier. 

I made these when Mr Curly’s friend came round with his DSLR. Mr Curly and Andy snacked on these during us taking the photos and I sent Andy away with a goodie bag of the things I had made that we had photographed; apart from these sausage rolls. We met up with Andy and other friends that evening and there was outrage that they hadn’t got to try these sausage rolls Andy had mentioned were so tasty. I made up for their disappointment by dropping some round to their house the next day. 

Obviously feel free to make your own pastry, or use ready bought pastry and roll it yourself if you prefer. You can also make the cranberry sauce yourself too, but I was trying to make these as quick and easy as possible. 

These are delicious served warm or cold and can be kept in the fridge for up to a week. 

Makes roughly 16

400g turkey mince
1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
1 tsp sea salt
¼ tsp black pepper
½ tsp garlic powder
1 x 375g pack ready rolled puff pastry
130g cranberry sauce

1 egg, beaten or 1 tbsp milk 
Spray oil 

  1. Preheat the oven to 190ºC (for fan assisted or 210ºC) 
  2. Empty the turkey mince into a large bowl and add the thyme, salt, pepper and garlic powder. Mix thoroughly to distribute the seasonings, I find it easiest to do this with your hands 

  1. Unroll the pastry and cut the pastry in half length ways. Spread half of the cranberry sauce down the middle of each strip of pastry
  2. Form the turkey into two long sausage shapes and place on top of the cranberry sauce

  1. Brush one of the long edges of each piece of pastry with the beaten egg or milk 
  2. Roll the pastry closest to you tightly under the turkey mince and then roll over so the sealed edge is on the bottom

  1. Cut each long roll of pastry into individual sausage rolls
  2. Spray two baking trays with oil and place the sausage rolls on the tray. Brush each sausage roll with the beaten egg or milk
  3. Using scissors, make roughly three cuts into the top of each sausage roll

  1. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes. Once out of the oven, transfer the sausage rolls onto a wire rack as soon as possible and allow to cool 

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Honey & Mustard Cocktail Sausages

Sticky and sweet sausages with a very slight bite from wholegrain mustard. These Honey & Mustard Cocktail Sausages are very addictive and will disappear very quickly!

I love sausages, and I especially love all of the different flavours and varieties you can buy these days. My all time favourite sausages have to be pork and apple though, there is definitely something about them – what’s yours? I really love the sticky sweetness the apple brings to the sausages which helped inspire this recipe. 

Honey and mustard are one of my favourite flavour combinations. Other types of mustard aren’t really for me, but wholegrain mustard in recipes is definitely my cup of tea. It also works really well with the sweetness of the honey which helps it stick to the sausages better. 

This recipe is ideal for gatherings anytime of year, but especially at Christmas. The days between Christmas and New Year always blend into one and no one really knows which day it is. I love these days because they are typically days when you graze on food without necessarily having a full meal. 

One of the reasons there is a lot of grazing is because these days are typically spent with friends and family and people are already in a bit of a food coma from their Christmas meal days before. These Honey & Mustard Cocktail Sausages are great to whip up if people want a tasty snack (that isn’t a leftover turkey sandwich). They would also be great to serve as part of a buffet for a New Year’s Eve gathering. 

They’re particularly great for gatherings because they can easily be eaten with a cocktail stick – no cutlery needed and also only require one hand which is good because there may be a festive tipple in the other;and also because they are bite size (or two if you’re dainty). 

Be warned though – if you make these for a group of people, make plenty. They are so delicious people will keep coming back for more and they will be gone before you know it! 

I like my sausages dark and crisp, but if you would prefer them slightly less crisp, cook them for 25 minutes. I would recommend soaking your baking tray as soon as you have taken the sausages off though because as you can see some of the sugar burns and will be much easier to was off after a soak!

18 pork cocktail sausages
1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
1 ½ tbsp runny honey 
¼ tsp sea salt 

  1. Preheat the oven to 210ºC (190ºC fan assisted) 
  2. Put the sausages in a bowl and add the mustard, honey and salt 

  1. Stir to make sure the sausages are evenly coated in all of the honey and mustard
  2. Lay the sausages onto a baking tray in one layer and spoon all of the mustard and honey mix on top 

  1. Cook in the oven for 30 minutes, turning the sausages half way through. Coat the sausages in the juices from the tray when you turn them 

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Couscous Salad

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Fresh, colourful and versatile. This cous cous dish is delicious as well as being healthy.

Growing up I didn’t like cous cous. Well I told myself I didn’t as the only time I had come across it was when my Mum made her version of Tabbouleh. This was never going to be the best cous cous dish for me to try as it is packed with herbs such as parsley, mint and coriander – all of which I can’t stand. After years of thinking I didn’t like it, my Mum made a version with no herbs and very similar to what I make today and I realised I did actually like cous cous!

Along with my Mum, my sister and I have been making this recipe for years but with different variations. This recipe is great for adding things you like and leaving out anything you don’t. My Mum and sister make theirs using tomatoes and spring onions as well as the ingredients I use. I like tomatoes but I don’t seem to have them in my fridge every week whereas I always have the other ingredients. So please feel free to add anything else you fancy. I decided to call is Cous Cous Salad because I tend to use basic ingredients that I’d put in a salad – imaginative I know!

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The versatility doesn’t end with the ingredients in the cous cous, you can also add a whole range of ‘toppings’. We usually have this cous cous with marinated chicken, but we have had it with chorizo, grilled halloumi and my new favourite; chicken sausages.

This is now my boyfriend’s favourite recipe to make for his lunches during the week. If he can make it, then you can too!

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Serves 4
350g cous cous
750g boiled water
1 tbsp chicken stock
1 tbsp olive oil
2-3 peppers
1 x 340g tin of sweetcorn, drained
¾ of a cucumber, diced
20g butter (optional)

  1. Preheat the oven to 200ºC. De-seed and slice the peppers. Put them on a baking tray and roast in the oven for around 30 minutes, turning half way. You want them to get slightly blackened
  2. Put the cous cous in a large bowl. Add the chicken stock, olive oil and water to the cous cous. The water should just cover the cous cous by around 1cm. Stir with a fork and then cover with cling film
  3. While the cous cous is cooking, dice the cucumber and drain the sweetcorn
  4. After around 15 minutes the cous cous should have plumped and cooked. Test it is ready by trying it, if it is still a little hard recover for a few more minutes

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  1. Once the cous cous is cooked, add the butter if you are using it and fork through to fluff up the cous cous2016-07-12 19.12.52
  2. Remove the peppers from the oven and slice up. Add to the cous cous along with the sweetcorn and cucumber and fork through to mix

 

Chorizo & Potato Quesadillas

These Chorizo & Potato Quesadillas are absolutely delicious. Lightly spiced potato, chorizo and vegetable filling sandwiched between tortillas. Great hot or cold but extra tasty with soured cream. 

These delicious Chorizo & Potato Quesadillas are one my sister, Ally,  constructed after a trip to Wahaca in London where she had a similar dish. She then used the flavours to make her own version which I have then tweaked again to make this version. This is a great recipe to make your own and add ingredients that you fancy. 

For Mother’s Day, my sister Ally and I decided to make a Mexican Feast as a more personal touch than taking her out for a meal. When I say we made a feast, I wasn’t exaggerating!  We made these Chorizo & Potato Quesadillas, Nachos, Chilli, Carnitas, Chicken Tinga as well as Quacamole, Salsa and Mexican Sweetcorn Salad. We had enough leftovers for everyone to take goodies home.

Ally and I spent the majority of the day at my house making all of these delicious dishes. It was quite a tiring day and we definitely earned our beer; but we also had a great time in the kitchen together.

The quesadillas have become a favourite dish in my house. Ally’s version has onions in them but if you are a regular to my blog, then you will know that onions are not for me so I leave them out. This recipe is so easy to adapt to your tastes but also what you have in your fridge. I always add sweetcorn and peppers but you could add mushrooms or tomatoes or even some black beans. 

The first time I made them without Ally, I ended up making enough quesadillas to feed a family of six or more! This is because as my sister made up the recipe, her method was ‘a bit of this and a bit of that’ so I had to work out quantities of ingredients. However the benefit of making too many is I found out they are absolutely delicious cold the next day. I chose to not re-heat them because I was at work and using the microwave i thought would have made them a bit limp and soft. Although when cold they obviously didn’t have the crisp tortilla like when they were freshly cooked, the filling’s flavours seemed to intensify and become even more delicious.

These Chorizo & Potato Quesadillas work really well as a starter, for lunch or as your main meal. They are also really easy to make for a crowd. The quantities below make three whole quesadillas which if you cut them into eight triangles makes twenty four. So you decide how many people you want to share them with, but be warned you may eat more than you intended to! 

Updated 2018

Serves 4-5 people 

600g potatoes, peeled and diced
1 onion, diced (optional)

130g chorizo, diced
2 cloves of garlic, minced

1 x 198g tin of sweetcorn, drained
1 pepper, diced

150g cheese, grated
½ tsp chili powder (I use ancho and chipotle)
½ tsp sea salt plus ¼ tsp to boil the potatoes 
Pinch of black pepper
1-2 tsp sunflower oil 
6 large tortillas 

  1. Peel and dice the potatoes and boil them until cooked through in salted water

  1. Add the chorizo to a frying pan over a medium heat. Keep stirring to allow the oils from the chorizo to be released and then add the onions (if using) and peppers

  1. Allow the onions (if using) and peppers to soften for a couple of minutes and then add the potatoes. Using your wooden spoon, squish the potatoes slightly. Cook for a few minutes adding some of the oil if it begins to stick

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  1. After a couple of minutes, add the sweetcorn, chili powder, salt and pepper and stir through. Leave to cook stirring occasionally for 2-3 minutes before turning out into a bowl

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  1. Place one large tortilla in a clean frying pan over a medium heat. Scatter the tortilla with some of the grated cheese before topping with a thin layer of the potato filling. Spread the filling to the edges of the tortilla before scattering with more grated cheese

  1. Place another tortilla on top and press down to squidge the filling right to the edges. By now the bottom tortilla should be browned and slightly crispy. Carefully flip the tortilla over so the bottom becomes the top. How you choose to do this is up to you! I get a large spatula and flip but you can always tip it out onto a plate and then flip it and slip it back into the pan
  2. Once flipped, allow the tortilla to cook for 1-2 minutes until browned and crispy and you can see the cheese has melted inside

  1. Turn out onto a board and cut into eighths. Serve with lots of soured cream

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Skinny Chicken Tikka

My Skinny Chicken Tikka takes one of the most loved Indian dishes which I have tweaked to make it a lighter without compromising on taste.

I’m not very adventurous when it comes to Indian food as I don’t like coconut, coriander or too spicy. This means that whenever we go to an Indian restaurant I always and I mean always order a chicken tikka masala. 

Quite a few years ago, my brother in law Dom, found a delicious recipe online for Chicken Tikka Masala which tasted just like you would get in a restaurant. Unfortunately the website the recipe was from no longer exists so I can’t share that with you. The original recipe came in two parts – the first half for the chicken and the second for the sauce. When Dom made it for us, he made the sauce too which was amazing. Since Dom made it, I haven’t made the sauce again but this is just due to it being quite time consuming (soaking almonds was involved) and also it not being very healthy. 

I have made changes to make this Chicken Tikka healthier without compromising on the taste – win! There wouldn’t have been much point in my opinion to change the recipe if the outcome wasn’t as tasty. I think healthy food shouldn’t mean less flavour. This is why I was so pleased that the healthier swaps in this recipe still make a delicious Skinny Chicken Tikka. 

Most Chicken Tikka recipes use cream and butter and quite a lot of it at that! Instead, I have substituted these high calorie ingredients with non-fat yogurt and spray oil. I’ve made this with chicken breasts and thighs. I love using thighs because I think they have more flavour and the extra little bit of fat they have helps keep the chicken moist. If you really are health conscious I would recommend using breast however as this is less than 240 calories per portion. If you wanted to use thighs, this is still only around 260 calories per portion.  

A warning should come with this recipe however. The longer you leave the chicken to marinate, the more delicious your Skinny Chicken Tikka will be. You may curse my name though because every time you open the fridge you will be met by a delicious waft of spices. Trust me though – resist temptation and leave it for up to sixty hours to get the best flavour. 

My favourite way of eating this Skinny Chicken Tikka is with lettuce, cucumber and some mango chutney. You could crumble some poppadoms on top of your salad for some extra crunch. Just don’t get too carried away with the mango chutney because unfortunately this isn’t skinny! 

If you would like something a bit more substantial, I would recommend eating this in a wrap or pitta with salad. 

Serves 4

700g skinned chicken, diced
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
175g non-fat natural yogurt
1 tbsp ginger puree
1 tbsp garlic puree
2 tbsp Tandoori Masala powder
½ tsp tumeric
½ tsp garam masala
1 tsp dried coriander 

½ tsp chilli powder
Spray oil

  1. Put the diced chicken into a large bowl. Add all of the ingredients, except the oil and mix until combined. Cover the bowl and leave to marinate in the fridge for 2-60 hours – the longer the better!

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  1. Preheat the grill to high and line the grill pan with foil and spray with oil
  2. Spray metal skewers with oil and thread the chicken pieces on

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  1. Place the skewers on the grill pan and spray with oil.  Cook quite close to the element for 3-4 minutes

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  1. Turn the skewers over, spray with more oil and cook for another 3-4 minutes. Keep turning and spraying with oil until the chicken is cooked through. This should take between 20-25 minutes. You’re looking to get charred areas of the chicken
  2. Carefully ease the chicken from the skewers and enjoy hot or cold 
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Bacon Jam

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Bacon. Jam. A sweet delicious bacon-y jam. Yes it is as amazing as it sounds. I’m sure everyone will agree that bacon makes everything better… well apart from vegetarians but even they can appreciate the glory of bacon.

I’m not completely sure where  I first heard about bacon jam, I think it must have been something I stumbled across when I was browsing the internet for tasty sounding recipes. But as soon as I did see it I knew it was something I wanted to make! From what I can tell, a food truck in America called Skillet came up with the genius idea of bacon jam as a condiment for their burgers. Although they haven’t shared their recipe, a few people have tried to work out what the ingredients might be. I looked at quite a few before decided on one by Leite’s Culinaria. They all featured very similar ingredients but I wasn’t keen on adding hot sauce because I didn’t want a spicy bacon jam, so settled on this one. The original recipe can be found at http://leitesculinaria.com/82690/recipes-bacon-jam.html.

As you can imagine, the house smelled amazing as I was cooking! It isn’t the quickest recipe because it needs to simmer away to reduce and become deliciously sticky. But its perfect to make on a lazy Sunday afternoon when you don’t want to leave the house anyway!

These quantities make enough for me to fill three 280ml jars so it doesn’t produce a huge yield. The bacon jam then needs to be kept in the fridge for up to four weeks. It can be eaten with whatever you fancy adding a bit of bacon-y goodness to but I decided to add it to one of my handmade burgers. If you’re using it from the fridge you will just need to heat it up in a pan over a low heat for five minutes or so until it has warmed through and gone slightly darker. It goes perfectly on a burger because it adds the bacon flavour but also a rich sweetness.

680g smoked bacon, cut into a large dice
2 medium onions, diced
3 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled

¾ cup strongly brewed coffee
½ cup cider vinegar
½ cup packed dark brown sugar
¼ cup maple syrup

  1.  Add the bacon to a large pan over a medium heat. Stir occasionally until the fat has rendered down and the bacon has become a light brown colour. This should take roughly 20 minutes

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  1. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a plate lined with kitchen towel to allow it to drain
  2. If there is any fat left in the pan, drain off all but one tablespoon. Add the onions and garlic to the pan and cook until the onions are translucent. This should take around 6 minutes. Make sure the heat isn’t too high or else the colours will brown instead

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  1. Add the coffee, cider vinegar, brown sugar and maple syrup and bring to the boil. Scrape the bottom of the pan to make sure you get all of the browned bits that have stuck. Add the bacon back to the pan and stir

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  1. Reduce the heat so that it is barely simmering and cook uncovered for 1 – 1½ hours or until the liquid has almost completely evaporates and turns syrupy

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  1. Let the jam cool slightly before pulsing in a food processor until it is coarsely chopped. Spoon the bacon jam into sterilised jars and keep in the fridge for up to four weeks.
  2. Rewarm the jam by gently heating it in a pan on a low heat

I didn’t take a photo of the bacon jam after it had been pulsed because to be honest it didn’t look too appealing! It went paler and almost cloudy? So if yours looks a but like that, don’t worry it hasn’t gone wrong! I also have the most ridiculously tiny food processor which isn’t even a food processor its one of those mini choppers. This meant I had to pulse mine in batches but it still worked just as well.

Bacon jam goes perfectly on my homemade burgers, the recipe is here http://www.curlyscooking.co.uk/?p=1340.

Domesticated Momster

Cheese, Bacon & Mustard Twists

Crisp pastry wrapped around streaky bacon with cheese and wholegrain mustard. These Cheese, Bacon & Mustard Twists are the perfect party snack!

Is it just me or does it not get much better than cheese and bacon wrapped in crisp pastry? These really are as good as they sound!

Tweaking a recipe I saw on TV

When I was watching one of Lorraine Pascale’s TV shows,  I saw this recipe and instantly knew it was something I wanted to re-create with a few tweaks. I love cooking shows because I like to see recipes at every stage. This is something I try to show in my recipes by taking photographs along the way so people can see if theirs looks as it should do. One thing I really don’t like is when cookery books don’t show you a photograph of the finished dish. For me the photograph is what I look at first to see whether I want to make a recipe and helps me picture the dish.

Cheese, Bacon & Mustard Twists are the perfect snack for between Christmas and New Year when you are destined to graze all day everyday. This time of year is so busy for everyone that any time saving tricks are a godsend in my opinion. This is why I have used ready rolled puff pastry! I am never ashamed to admit I love ready rolled pastry. It is so convenient and also because I am terrible at rolling out pastry into a rectangle (or any other shape!). 

Adjusting a recipe to your taste

As with all recipes I think you should adapt them to your personal tastes. Lorraine’s original recipe uses English mustard. I much prefer wholegrain mustard so I wanted to use this instead. If you don’t like mustard at all, just leave it out. 

Using light puff pastry

I made these using light puff pastry which worked really well. The only downside is that it is slightly harder to work with before it is cooked because I think it is softer. If you would like to use light pastry but find you are struggling to separate the pastry from the paper, just put it back in the fridge for ten minutes or so for it to firm up slightly. 

Updated December 2018
5 from 6 votes
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Cheese, Bacon & Mustard Twists

Crisp pastry wrapped around streaky bacon with cheese and wholegrain mustard. These Cheese, Bacon & Mustard Twists are the perfect party snack!

Course Snack
Cuisine British
Keyword Bacon, Mustard, Cheese, Pastry Twists
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 16
Calories 184 kcal
Author Curly

Ingredients

  • 375 g puff pastry (ready rolled)
  • 1 tbsp wholegrain mustard (heaped)
  • 100 g mature cheddar grated
  • 8 slices streaky bacon
  • 2 tbsp semi skimmed milk

Instructions

  1. Line two baking trays with baking paper and set aside

  2. Unroll the pastry keeping it on the paper so that the longest side is facing you and spread with the wholegrain mustard 

  3. Scatter the grated cheese evenly over the pastry 

  4. Line the streaky bacon slices across the pastry leaving a small space between each slice 

  5. Using a sharp knife, cut the pastry between each slice of bacon. Then cut each strip you have just made in half so you have 16 mini strips

  6. Slide the pastry, still on the paper onto a baking and chill in the fridge for 10 minutes. 

  7. Preheat the oven to 180°C (200°C non fan) 

  8. Take the pastry out of the oven and twist each strip of pastry 2-3 times. Line the twists on the baking trays and bake for 20 minutes until golden and crisp

Recipe Notes

Read the pastry package before starting each pack will vary how long it recommends getting the pastry out of the fridge before using it. Don't worry too much if you forget, just be extra careful when you unroll it to not rip it. 

Tasty eaten hot or cold. Keep in the fridge for 3-4 days. 

Nutritional information is given as a guide only. Based on normal pastry (not light). 

Nutrition Facts
Cheese, Bacon & Mustard Twists
Amount Per Serving
Calories 184 Calories from Fat 81
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 9g 14%
Saturated Fat 2g 10%
Sodium 69mg 3%
Potassium 16mg 0%
Total Carbohydrates 10g 3%
Protein 1g 2%
Calcium 0.5%
Iron 3.4%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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