Mixed Fruit Crumble

This is an ideal way of using up fruit that is starting to look a little sad and being bypassed for fresher looking fruit! Predominantly a pudding but my family have been known to scoop a bowlful as an alternative breakfast!

You can pretty much use any fruit. I find Apples, pears, plums, berries, rhubarb, all work well and I tend to add in, citrus, banana and mango to other fruits rather than a whole crumble of them, but that is only because I haven’t tried it thus far!

The great thing about this recipe is that you can make a little or a lot. I tend to decide from what fruit I would like to use up as to how big the dish I am going to use and subsequently how much crumble I will need. Therefore the amounts below are a rough guide, its quick and easy so if you feel your crumb is looking a bit thin you can always add some more!

  • Prep Time 10-15 minutes
  • Cook Time 30-35 minutes
  • Serves 4-6

Ingredients

  • 500g of mixed fruit
  • 1 tablespoon of sugar, honey or syrup
  • 100g of flour
  • 50g of butter
  • 50g of sugar white or brown
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Quick Flap Jacks

Flap jacks one of those snacks that you can leave basic or add in all sorts of things that you would like to use up. Banana, apple, raisins, chocolate chips, leftover cereals, I love just popping things in and seeing how they turn out.

For a quick basic recipe see below and have a go!

  • Prep Time 10-15 minutes
  • Cook Time 20-25 minutes

Ingredients

  • 125g sugar
  • 125 butter
  • 2 tablespoons of Golden Syrup
  • 250g Porridge Oats
  • 50g dried fruit (optional)

Method

  • Preheat the oven 180C / Fan 160C/ Gas 4
  • line a small baking sheet with grease proof paper
  • Place the butter, sugar and syrup in a saucepan, put on a low heat stir and melt it down.
  • Once all melted add the oats, dried fruit and any other bits and pieces and give a good mix around making sure everything is coated.
  • Once mixed place into the tray, smooth and press down with a fork
  • Bake in the oven for around 20 mins or until golden.
  • Remove and allow to cool
  • Once cooled, lift out and chop into squares.

Other Posts that may interest you

What can I do with overripe bananas

7 Reasons Why You Should Make Your Own Soup

Why Less is More

What can I do with overripe bananas

You bring your lovely bananas home partially green and it seems within seconds there are brown spots they quickly become less appealing to eat as each day passes. Before you know it, there are more black than yellow areas all hints of greenness disappeared. However before you head for the nearest bin even if its a compost bin have a look at these options. There are quick options for when you are heading out of the door!

  • Freeze
  • Banana porridge
  • Mashed Banana & Peanut Butter on toast
  • Smoothie
  • Banana Ice Cream (quick method)
  • Baked Banana
  • Banana & Mixed Fruit Crumble
  • Banana Flap Jacks
  • Banana over ripening prevention

Freeze

Freezing is a quick way of delaying any further ripening and saving them for use at a later date. You can actually freeze with the skin on, it will go black. (ensure when defrosting you place in a bowl as there will be liquid seeping)

Bananas are best put in an air tight container or freezer bag. I tend to use reusable jars. But whatever you use, you can peel and cut into chunks, there by being able to remove the amount of chunks you may want for later. If space is tight you can mash up and place in a freezer bag, flatten to remove air and seal. You then will have a nice flat shape that can slot in pretty much anywhere in the freezer. Labelling your item with how many mashed bananas it contains can be helpful for future use.

Continue reading “What can I do with overripe bananas”

Basic Vegetable Stock

This basic vegetable stock recipe can be created and used straight away, kept in the fridge for a few days, or frozen for another time, it’s easy and can be a great way of using up leftover vegetables:-

Ingredients

  • 1-2 Carrots
  • 1 Whole Onion (skin on is fine)
  • 4 sticks of celery or the bulb end
  • a handful of mushrooms
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 Sprig of Thyme
  • 1 handful of parsley

Method

  • Wash (making sure all dirt is removed) and roughly chop your ingredients (skins can be kept on)
  • Place in a large saucepan or stock/soup pot
  • Cover with water so that the vegetables are covered by about 1 inch of water and can easily be stirred.
  • Put on a medium heat and once getting to boiling point, reduce to a simmer and simmer for about 1 hour stirring occasionally.
  • Turn off the heat, strain and you have your stock.

If not reusing straight away remember to cool before putting in an air tight container. It will keep in the fridge for up to 1 week and can be frozen for up to 3 months.

For a lighter flavour you can add more water or less for a more concentrated stock.

You do not need to add Salt or Pepper, this is best leaving till you make your soup, or use it in other cooking.

Another good way of creating stock is keeping a container in the freezer for leftover bits of veg that you haven’t used and once you have enough for stock, create the stock.

It is fine to use vegetables that are passed their best but do not use mouldy vegetables.

Other articles you may like

7 Reasons Why You Should Make Your Own Soup

Click on the links below to see some of my favourite soup recipes.

Roasted Mediterranean Vegetable Soup

Broccoli and Stilton Soup

Leftover Vegetable Soup

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

Roasted Sweet Potato Carrot and Lentil Soup

7 Reasons Why You Should Make Your Own Soup

There is something incredibly wholesome and satisfying about homemade soup both for the cook and the recipient. A large pot on the stove simmering away with that welcome aroma floating through the house is a scent encompassing the feeling of warmth and cosiness on a cold night. Equally satisfying, open a flask at work, school or out in the cold and you have instant tingly home cosy warmth to wrap your hands around. If this isn’t enough to get you heading to the kitchen and peering in the fridge for possible soup ingredients, then see below for 7 reasons why it is worth making your own soup!

In a rush…don’t need the reason just want some recipes? – Scroll to the bottom of this post!

  • You know exactly what is in it!
  • Nutritious
  • Low Calorie & Filling
  • Easy to make
  • Low Cost
  • Environmentally Friendly
  • Easy to Freeze

You know exactly what is in it!

Hate to state the obvious but the reality is, you make it, you know what’s in it! Equally goes for any homemade food you’re creating from scratch. Ready made soups, do tend to have a higher salt and sugar content, so something to check on the ingredients breakdown label. I do not need to add sugar to my soups, and may not always add salt, if I feel it tastes fine without. Some items being added for example in my Broccoli & Stilton Soup the Stilton being cheese, will already have salt in it. As will ready made stock cubes and other ready made stock options. You can get reduced salt or (reduced sodium) stock. If you are worried or need to limit your salt intake, you can also just either use water, or make your own stock without any salt. For my recipe on How to make stock click here.

Nutritious

As most soups have plenty of plant based ingredients and meat based soups only usually have small amounts of meat as well as vegetables. The vitamin and mineral content of this meal is usually high depending on the ingredients, also, nothing is lost by throwing it away during cooking, everything remains together. It is also an excellent way of hiding specific unfavourable nutritious items that won’t be eaten normally by some family members (especially little ones) but are acceptable in soup.

Continue reading “7 Reasons Why You Should Make Your Own Soup”

Roasted Sweet Potato, Carrot & Lentil Soup

This all in one soup is one of those go to soups for an amazing taste from very little ingredients, the roasting process bringing out all the wonderful flavours of the Sweet Potato, Carrots, Onion and Garlic. If you don’t like it too spicy, go easier on the Chilli Flakes.

It’s silky smooth texture but hearty fill make this an excellent winter warmer lunch that will easily keep you going till dinner.

  • Prep Time 8-10 minutes
  • Cook Time 20-25 minutes
  • Serves 4-6

Ingredients

  • 1 Medium Sweet Potato
  • 3-4 Medium Carrots
  • 100g or 4 oz Red Lentils
  • 1 Onion
  • 5-6 Garlic Clothes
  • 2.5 Pints of stock
  • 1/4 tsp Chilli Flakes
  • 2 tsp Coriander ground or fresh
  • 2-3 Tablespoons of Olive Oil
  • Salt and pepper seasoning

Method

  • Turn on oven to warm 200C/ Fan 180C / 400 F/Gas 6
  • Wash, peel and chop vegetables putting approx 1/4 of the onion to the side, the garlic cloves can be peeled and left whole. Or if you like a strong garlic flavour you can use a whole one part peeling keeping it together and chopping the pointed ends off so it will bake in one. (See photograph below).
  • Pour some of the olive oil on the tray, then place the chunks of sweet potato, carrot, 3/4 of the onion and garlic on the tray, pour on the rest of the oil, chilli flakes, salt and pepper over the vegetables and mix everything together with your hands, ensuring everything has a coating of oil, (add a little more oil if necessary)
  • Pop in the oven for 10-15 mins or until vegetable are soft
  • Place a little oil in a large saucepan, heat and add the onion to soften and the lentils and 3-4 table spoonfuls of stock and cook for 3-4 mins keeping an eye, then put the rest of the stock into the pan and simmer for about 8 mins until the lentils are cooked.
  • Once the vegetables are cooked add them into the stock and blend with a hand blender or transfer to a liquidiser in batches.
  • Once blended return to the hob to heat season to taste and add the coriander. Stir in and serve.

Other Soup Recipes

Click on the links below to see some of my other favourite soup recipes you may like.

Roasted Mediterranean Vegetable Soup

Broccoli and Stilton Soup

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

Leftover Vegetable Soup

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

There’s nothing like the cosy warmth and tasty autumnal feel of Butternut Squash Soup, particularly roasting the butternut squash first really brings out the sweet flavour. You can also use Pumpkin in place of butternut squash as a similar alternative.

Either way this super easy delicious soup is a great all rounder. Silky smooth and full of flavour, I have served this soup often and everyone has loved it.

  • Prep Time 10-15 minutes
  • Cook Time 35-40 minutes
  • Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 1 Whole Butternut Squash
  • 2 Onions Red or White or 1 Leek
  • 1 Small Potato
  • 2 Garlic Cloves
  • 2 Dessertspoons of Butter
  • 2 Tablespoons of Olive Oil
  • 1 pint of Chicken or Vegetable Stock
  • 1/2 teaspoon of Chilli flakes
  • Salt and Pepper

Method

  • Warm the oven 200C/400F Fan 180C or gas mark 6
  • Peel, chop and de-seed the Butternut Squash, peel and chop the Potato into roughly 1 inch cubes.
  • Grease a baking tray with some of the olive oil place the Butternut Squash and Potato on it, pour over the rest of the olive oil and season with salt and pepper stir around with your hands ensuring everything has a coating and pop in the oven for 25 mins.
  • Peel and chop your Onions and Garlic Cloves and place in a large pan with the melted butter on a low heat for approximately 5 mins or until soft. Put to one side.
  • Prepare the stock and pour into the onion and butter mixture.
  • Once cooked add in the Butternut Squash and Potato.
  • Either blend in the pan with a hand blender or transfer to a liquidiser
  • Return to the heat and season with salt pepper and chilli flakes stir until warm enough then serve.
  • For a creamy version you can add in a splash of creme freche or cream, but personally I love it as it is.

Other Soup Recipes

Click on the links below to see some of my other favourite soup recipes you may like.

Roasted Mediterranean Vegetable Soup

Broccoli and Stilton Soup

Leftover Vegetable Soup

Roasted Sweet Potato Carrot and Lentil Soup

Leftover Vegetable Soup

This warming vegetable filled soup is an adapted version past down the family from what was probably originally Scotch Broth. It is the most favoured soup according to my husband, so if you prefer a more watery soups (as he does) This could be the one for you!

It is made with surprisingly little veg and/or meat, so can be made vegan and vegetarian, just by changing to a vegetable based stock and using oil and not butter to soften the onion. For a meat version adding a small amount of chicken, turkey, mutton or ham joint with a chicken stock, will work. It is literally made with leftover bits of whatever veg you have hanging around. If you are trying to avoid food waste or trying to make a meal out of next to nothing, this really ticks the box.

The vegetables do tend to sink to the bottom when your ready to serve enabling a watery version soup with a few bits for one person and a heartier version with lots of veg for another. This is one versatile cosy soup, and ideal in helping to reduce symptoms of a cold or flu, particularly if you are adding plenty of garlic and onion, and /or boiling a chicken carcass for stock or even using a chicken stock cube.

So how do you make this easy to make nourishing soup.. let’s start!

  • Prep time – 15 mins
  • Cook Time – 15 mins
  • Serves 8

Ingredients

  • 1 Onion or leek
  • 1 Small potato
  • 1 Carrot
  • 2-3 Garlic Cloves
  • 2.5 pints of stock either vegetable or chicken
  • 2 knobs of butter or 1 tablespoon of oil to soften onion
  • Salt and Pepper for seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons of Rice, Lentils or Broth Mix

Above is some basic ingredients to use, as you can see in the pictures below, I only actually used 3/4 of an onion as that was all I had. Other vegetables to that work well include :- swede, turnip, broccoli, mushrooms, cauliflower, kale, cabbage. You only need small amounts, which is why leftovers from perhaps a Sunday lunch work well.

Method

  • Prepare all the veg you are going to use by washing, peeling and cutting them up very small, as small as you can manage.
  • Heat the oil or butter in a large saucepan
  • Add the onion and/or leek as well as the garlic and soften for 2-3 mins
  • Add all the other prepared vegetables and stir to coat slightly with the fat/oil 1-2 mins but don’t allow them to burn, add a small amount of stock if necessary.
  • Stir in all of the stock, once it starts to boil turn down to a simmer add a seasoning of salt and pepper and cook for approximately 10-15 mins until vegetables are soft.
  • Serve and enjoy.

Other Soup Recipes

Click on the links below to see some of my other favourite soup recipes you may like.

Roasted Mediterranean Vegetable Soup

Broccoli and Stilton Soup

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

Roasted Sweet Potato Carrot and Lentil Soup

As mentioned above Chicken Soup is widely known as helping with cold and flu symptoms. For further relief of cold and flu symptoms see my blog post by clicking the link below.

Quick Cold Remedy That Works

Broccoli and Stilton Soup

This seriously tasty comfort soup is smooth and full of flavour. It really is a meal in itself, an ideal curl up cosy dinner on a cold and wet day, when you just want to keep the door shut and the fire on. Having said that, I have also used it as a starter for a dinner party, perhaps limit the amount served and the breadbasket otherwise they will be full before main!

Like most soups it can be adapted and there are other versions to try that include cream and not potato, as well as other adaptations.

I like to keep it simple and easy, and as no oven baking is required it’s super quick!

  • Prep time 4 mins
  • Cook time 10-15 mins
  • Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 1 Whole Broccoli
  • 1 Small Potato
  • 1 Onion preferably white, (you can use red, it just changes the colour slightly)
  • 80g of Stilton or blue cheese
  • 2 heaped tsp butter
  • 1 pint of vegetable stock
  • Black Pepper for seasoning

Method

  • Chop up the onion, potato and broccoli (including the stalk- chop the stalk and potato small)
  • Melt the butter in a large pan and add the onion, allow to soften (around 2-4 mins) and add some water if needed.
  • Add all of the chopped broccoli, potato and stock. Once it starts to boil turn down to simmer for about 5-8 mins or until you can get a fork in the broccoli and potato.
  • Once soft, turn off heat add pepper and crumble or grate in the cheese, stir in to give it chance to melt, then hand blend or pop into a liquidiser.
  • Add more pepper to taste
  • Serve and enjoy.

Other Soup Recipes

Below are my other favourite soup recipes you may like

Roasted Mediterranean Vegetable Soup

Leftover Vegetable Soup

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

Roasted Sweet Potato Carrot and Lentil Soup

Quick Cold Remedy That Works

I have been using this natural cold remedy for myself and family for years. It helps with all miserable symptoms of cold and flu…. runny nose, sore throat and coughing. If I feel a cold coming on I will usually have a drink as soon as possible to start increasing my vitamin C levels and boosting my immunity.

As staying hydrated is an important part of reducing symptoms this warm drink helps with that. The vitamin c in the fresh orange juice and lemon, the natural antibacterial properties and immune boosting properties of garlic and calming effects of honey which coats the throat helping coughs as well as being an antioxidant. All work together to help reduce and ease cold/flu symptoms.

(Honey should not be given to children under 1 as there can be a risk of causing Botulism, for information on this illness click here ).

Its a quick and easy recipe, and well worth a try. I will usually have 2 or 3 glasses of this per 24 hour period, as well as water and any other beverages.

Recipe

  • 80 ml fresh orange juice
  • 1 to 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 slice of lemon
  • 1 teaspoon of honey
  • hot water

Method

Pour the orange juice into a 1/2 pint glass or large mug, add the slice of lemon. Slice the garlic cloves in half and add, top up with hot water (1 cup or more), add the honey and stir. Allow to cool slightly before drinking.

Chicken Soup is also well known to help with cold and flu symptoms. My Leftovers Vegetable Soup recipe has a chicken version to see this recipe click here

Please note this post does not replace the advice given by a qualified doctor. If you have any health concerns or persistent symptoms you should contact your doctor/health practitioner.