Sunday, 25 September 2016

The Flora Cathays Cardiff ... A review

I was lucky enough to be invited to go to the relaunch of The Flora the other week (apologies for the late review). I have never visited this pub before but found it easily a quick ten minute walk from Cathays train station and its there on the right.

First impressions were very favourable the bar area was airy and light and although not many there when we arrived the bar staff were really friendly and chatty. My friend and I decided to indulge in a couple of cocktails and they were delicious. I had a Flora Fizz which was gin based with mint and cucumber and I could really smell and taste the cucumber it was very refreshing my friend had a Strawberry cocktail which she said was gorgeous they went down very well and competitively priced at £5 each.

Our starter came out and was a deep fried breaded goats cheese which was very tasty and was served on a salad with slivers of crunchy apple which made the salad interesting and bright drizzled with a honey mustard dressing

The second course was fish goujons coated with a Barry Island IPA batter which was light and crispy, Served alongside with it was a  homemade tartare sauce which came in a cute little glass lidded jar which could have been a bit bigger to be honest as you couldn't dip into it but it was sharp with gherkins and creamy. Another dish on the board were small dishes with lamb meatballs which were lovely with a mint, honey and yogurt sauce to accompany it. Two different types of fries came along with this one lot with rosemary and garlic and the others were paprika both of which were really good my friend and I had to split them between us as we couldn't decided which we liked the best I think I fought harder for the paprika ones to be fair but they were both fab.

Our dessert was very interesting a cup of vanilla ice cream with a syrup made from Brains S.A. we were told that it was made with a the beer along with brown sugar and dark chocolate now I'm not keen on beer so was a little wary but it was to die for really dark and sticky reminded me of treacle toffee which is always a good thing.

Unfortunately due to train times we had to run to catch the train and didn't get a proper chance to thank everyone for their hospitality and by the time we left the place had really filled up and was lively with chatter, I could see there was a good selection of beers available and the wine list looked pretty good too.

It was lovely to see that an effort was made to include local ingredients on the menu and while its no where near local to me I shall definitely be paying a return visit for the food and cocktails.


Saturday, 24 September 2016

Porky sausage patties (Slimming World friendly )

You can buy Slimming World friendly sausages but not everyone likes them, This super quick recipe makes delicious syn free sausages only thing is they aren't in skins but doesn't bother me you can roll them into sausage shapes if you prefer but I just make them into patties.

The good thing is once you have made them next time you can add more some things and less of others however you like it, I sometimes add some chili flakes or more sage just play around and see which you like best. You can pick up garlic and onion powder (also known as granulated) with the herbs and spices in the supermarket.

Porky sausage patties

500g pork mince (less than 5% fat)
1 tsp dried sage
1 tsp dried parsley
1/2 tsp dried thyme
2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
low calorie spray oil

Simply put all the ingredients into a bowl and mix together REALLY well best to either use your hands or you can whizz it in the food processor just for a minute.

Just take tablespoons of the mixture and roll into balls then put them in a frying pan lightly sprayed with oil then press them down lightly to make patties.

Fry over a medium heat for a bout 5 minutes each side. Check they are thoroughly cooked through but try not to overcook or they will be dry.

Makes about 8

Syn free

Sunday, 18 September 2016

Rustic creamy mashed potatoes (Slimming World friendly)

I love these potatoes and so easy to make you don't even peel the potatoes but you have to choose the right variety of potato. I use Marabel which I buy in ASDA which are thin skinned but suitable for mashing. I have used the red rooster potatoes too they are very good.

The picture also shows the turkey meatloaf  which I served with the mash and the recipe for that can be found by clicking here

Rustic creamy mashed potatoes

1 kg potatoes (see notes above)
1/2 tub quark
1 egg (beaten)
1/2 bunch chives (chopped)
salt and pepper

Cut the potatoes into smallish chunks and cook in boilng salted water until tender. Drain well and while still hot add the quark, chopped chives and beaten egg and mash, You aren't looking for a smooth mash because the skins give it texture (hence the rustic name!) Season with salt and pepper about a tsp of each and mix very well.

Syn free

Sunday, 4 September 2016

Hunters Chicken (Slimming World friendly)

I love this recipe it feels so naughty but it's not if you use the cheese as your healthy extra it is syn free.

To make it I use my homemade BBQ sauce you can find the recipe for that here (just click on the word 'here') it's really easy to make and worth making and keeping it in your fridge.

 If not using the cheese as a healthy extra 25g reduced fat cheddar cheese is 4 syns but as a healthy extra you can have 40g of reduced fat cheddar cheese.

All the quantities are per person.

Hunters Chicken

1 chicken breast
2 smoked bacon medallions
4 tbsp homemade Slimming World friendly BBQ sauce
40g reduced fat cheddar cheese (healthy extra)

Wrap the bacon around the chicken breast and place in an ovenproof dish. Spoon over the BBQ sauce to cover the chicken and sprinkle the cheese on top.

Place in an oven Gas 6/200/400 for 25-30 minutes until cheese is browned. I served with potato wedges and salad.

Enjoy :)