Recipe: Salmon Burgers with Spicy Wedges and Homemade Mayonnaise

I threw together a few different recipes to make this dish, and it’s still low fat, healthy and tasty! I made it to serve two people.

Ingredients – Salmon BurgersTa Da!

  • 2 fillets of skinless and boneless salmon (about 250g)
  • 1/2 tablespoon horseradish sauce
  • zest of one lemon
  • handful of dill (or I used parsley)
  • tablespoon of olive oil (for frying)
  • two burger buns

Ingredients – Spicy Potato Wedges

  • one large white potato
  • tablespoon of olive oil
  • salt & pepper
  • teaspoon paprika
  • teaspoon cayenne pepper

Ingredients – Homemade Mayonnaise (Delia Smith Style)

  • two whole eggs
  • tablespoon dijon mustard
  • pinch of salt
  • 250ml groundnut oil
  • tablespoon white wine vinegar

I added some lemon juice and chopped parsley for this recipe.

Method

first, the potatoes…

pre-heat the oven to gas mark 5, chop up potato into wedges and place on baking sheet, drizzle over the olive oil, add the salt and pepper, paprika and cayenne pepper. Mix all around with your hands until the wedges are covered, pop in the oven and set the timer for 30 mins.

second, the salmon burgers

put all the ingredients for the burgers in a food processor and whizz up until it forms a fine paste, then create little patties (I managed to get 4 burgers but you could do 2 large ones). Then warm the tablespoon of olive oil in a small frying pan and cook the burgers for just 4 minutes on each side. While they are cooking, you can make the mayonnaise!

third, the homemade mayonnaise

pop the two whole eggs into a food processor, add the dijon mustard and salt and turn on. With the food processor still on, gradually add the oil (slowly does it) until you’ve added the full 250ml, then add the white wine vinegar and whizz some more. This will be thinner than you would get from doing the mayo the hard way, but very yummy! I then poured the mixture into a large mixing bowl and whisked for a few minutes by hand. For this dish I added a small amount of lemon to the mayonnaise and also some chopped parsley.

Serving

it would be normal to use burger buns but without these available to me I used Warburtons sandwich ‘thins’, which we have a ready supply of! I served this dish with a wedge of lemon, and the mayonnaise in a glass and a teaspoon to add it onto your burger.

Next time I think I’ll either fry some peppers to go in the burger or add some rocket. Please let me know what you think!! Would love to know how your salmon burgers turned out.

Thanks to this Guardian article: How to Make the Perfect Mayonnaise?

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British Museum, London: Shakespeare, Staging the World

I was lucky enough to get some tickets (thanks Dad!) for the first day of the Shakespeare: Staging the World exhibition at the British Museum. It’s on from now until 25th November 2012

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What I thought

Firstly, my advice is to give yourself at least two hours to take in the whole exhibition – it is MASSIVE! Its array of historic artefacts, literary references (of course) and multi-media displays successfully put Shakespeare’s world into context.

What the exhibition covers

It starts with the history surrounding Shakespeare’s age – you can study old maps and tapestries, paintings and letters. I especially liked the handwritten ‘noticeboard’ for the Bear Baiting ring near the Globe. To think that people over 400 years ago have read this just baffles me.

Each of the major plays is broken down into historical facts and figures, actors reading various parts through video and audio, transcripts and information boards. Othello is my favourite (… or Julius Caesar – still can’t decide) and there is a whole section on the ‘other’ in society, and the art cropping up in Venice, where there was much more diversity of culture than in England at that time.

The British Museum has worked closely with the Royal Shakespeare Company on this one – and it’s spot on!

I found the exhibition fascinating, though I did have sore feet from wandering around and enjoyed a well deserved lunch afterwards! We headed to Savoir Faire on New Oxford Street in case you were wondering! £12.99 for a two course lunch – yum!

Find out more!

British Museum Website : Shakespeare Staging the World

Book Review: The Underground Man by Mick Jackson

This book is one of those that you end up passing around to all your bookey friends, and giving as a gift at Christmas. Since stumbling upon this book in a charity shop, I have bought several brand new copies to give to family members and friends, all of whom have loved reading the book just as much as I did.

The Underground Man is about an eccentric, rich old man who has crazy plans for building tunnels under his house and extensive grounds. As we live through him we learn more and more about his character, and how he is perceived by others. It is this public perception that really draws the humour and interest through this novel, as well as the many quotes from classic texts, and the narrators rambling thoughts.

Do not hesitate before buying this book – you will not regret it. After this, I then bought A Widow’s Tale by Mick Jackson, which was good, but not even close to The Underground Man. Enjoy.

I buy all of my books from a little bookshop in Hampshire, called Laurence Oxley’s Bookshop, 17 Broad Street, Alresford, Hampshire SO24 9AW. UK.

Fantastic bookshop and picture framer in Hampshire

Recipe: Garlic and Spinach Chicken

I tried this recipe last night and simply HAD to share it! It’s on the Channel 4 Website for healthy meals.

Here it is: 

INGREDIENTS

  • 4 tsp butter, softened
  • 3 tsp garlic paste
  • Small handful of parsley, finely chopped
  • 4 skinless chicken breasts
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 150g fresh spinach
  • 100ml chicken stock
  • 1 small onion, finely sliced
  • 16 baby tomatoes on the vine, sliced

For the wedges

  • 550g white potatoes, cut into wedges (Maris Piper or King Edward are ideal)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • 4 tbsp olive oil

For the salsa

  • 1 small red onion, finely chopped
  • 2 medium-large tomatoes, finely chopped
  • ¼ cucumber, finely chopped
  • ½ red pepper, finely chopped
  • 1 medium avocado, peeled and finely chopped
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • 2 tbsp flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • Garlic oil, to drizzle (if you don’t have garlic oil, use good quality olive oil)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method

  1. Preheat the oven at 190°C/gas mark 5. In a bowl mix together the butter, garlic paste and parsley. Slice the chicken breasts lengthways without cutting right through and fill each cavity with a large teaspoon of the garlic butter, then close them up again. Season well with salt and pepper.
  2. Lay a ‘bed’ of fresh spinach in the bottom of a baking dish, then pour the chicken stock over the spinach. Place the chicken breasts on top of the spinach, covering each one with the sliced onion and tomatoes, then season well again. Cover the baking dish with foil and place in the oven to bake for 30 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, prepare your wedges by placing them in a baking tray and drizzling with olive oil. In a small bowl, mix the salt, pepper, paprika and chilli powder together, then sprinkle over the wedges with another drizzle of olive oil. Bake the wedges in the oven for 30–40 minutes, or until they are golden brown.
  4. While the wedges are baking, make your salsa by mixing together all the ingredients, season well with salt and pepper and drizzle with the garlic oil or good quality olive oil.
  5. To serve, place the chicken and spinach alongside some of the crispy wedges and serve a good dollop of the fresh salsa on the side of the plate.
I actually opted out of making the salsa, just sticking to the chicken and wedges, and it was fantastic… I definitely recommend it!
Here’s where I found the recipe: Channel Four Healthy Eating Recipes.

Recipe: Whole Oreo Chocolate Chip Cookies!

I came across this recipe while browsing through Pinterest, and have made it four or five times now! These are to die for and I am the most popular person in the office when I bring them in!

All the measurements were in cups when I found it, but I have translated to use the recipe in England!

ImageThe Most Important (and Easy!) Recipe You’ll Ever Know:

Preheat oven to Gas Mark 4 – makes 24 cookies

226g butter (unsalted is best)

165g light brown (packed) sugar

201g granulated sugar

mix butter and sugar together

2 large eggs

1 tablespoon vanilla

whisk eggs and vanilla together then add to mix

448g plain flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

Packet of Chocolate Chips

24 Oreo Cookies (2 packs, double stuffed)

mix all together then make into balls, form cookies around whole oreos one by one

Bake in the oven for 13 mins, or until golden on the top. Do not be tempted to leave them in because they ‘look soggy’… this will result in very hard cookies (or biscuits, if you prefer), trust me!

Take them out, leave them to ‘cool’… yeah right! Enjoy 🙂 I am definitely going to be making these to sell at work, and raise some funds for my Paris Marathon in April!

Book Review: Monsieur Linh and His Child by Philippe Claudel

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This book blew me away. I don’t know what I was expecting, and I have started this strange habit of not reading the back of books until I’ve finished them, and in a way I’m glad because it really took my breath away.

I was recommended and lent this book by a family member, and I started reading it as I normally do, with several other books on the go. It was only towards the end of the book that I realised I was solely reading Monsieur Linh and His Child. My passion for the book really crept up on me.

This book is so fantastic that I really don’t want to give anything away. All I can say is that you will love it and you will go on to recommend it to others. On the back of this, I have now bought two other titles of Claudel’s, and cannot wait to start them!

Enjoy!

I buy all my books from a little bookshop in Hampshire, called Laurence Oxley’s Bookshop. The address is Laurence Oxley’s, Broad Street, Alresford, SO24 9AW. Image

Cycling: Ridgeback Advance 2012 Review

At the beginning of 2012 I decided to save the £160 a month I was giving to TfL and get back on the bike! I borrowed my partner’s Apollo Code (I know, I know) to cycle the 28 mile round trip.

My commute from Northolt to Chancery Lane (one way) consists of 9 miles of towpath/trail and 5 miles of road. The Apollo simply wasn’t coping with this level of usage, and I was getting at least one flat tyre a week, if not more! Also, many of these were ‘snake bite’ or ‘pinch’ tyres, which are not easily fixed.

Fantastic bicycle for towpaths, trails and roads! Thoroughly recommend it!

So, I looked into buying a new bike, and after a long, long search I found one that was marketed as being ‘great for all terrains – towpaths, trails and roads’… PERFECT!

I got the Ridgeback Advance 2012 on 21st May, and have so far ridden it over 500 miles, with no problems, no punctures, and it’s even shortened my commute by 5 mins.

I highly recommend this bike, at only £500 it’s a steal!

Head over to their site: The Ridgeback Advance 2012. As ever, if you have any questions just comment!

(and no, I have not been paid to post this!)