Healthier Philly cheese-steaks!

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Ingredients: (yields 2 large cheese-steaks)

1 large white onion

2 sub rolls

2 large portobello mushroom caps

4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon low sodium soy sauce

Salt

Freshly ground black pepper

350g strips of beef

125g half fat mozzarella

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Method:

  • Remove the stems from each mushroom cap and use a spoon to scrape off the brown gills. Slice the caps in half and then slice each half crosswise.
  • In a large pan, heat 2 teaspoons of the oil over medium-high heat. Add the beef and cook, stirring constantly, until no longer pink, about 3 minutes. Remove the beef from the pan and set aside.

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  • Wipe out the pan, return it to the heat, and add the remaining 2 teaspoons of olive oil. Add the vegetables and garlic and cook until tender and lightly browned, 7 to 8 minutes.

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  • Return the beef to the pan and stir in the Worcestershire and soy sauces. Season to taste with salt and black pepper.

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  • Reduce the heat to medium, place slices of mozzarella on top of the beef and vegetables and allow it to melt completely. Stir the mixture so that the beef is fully coated with the melted cheese.
  • Slice your sub rolls three-quarters of the way through and hollow out their insides using a spoon to remove the bread, leaving a ½-inch shell.
  • Divide the cheese steak filling among the two hollowed-out rolls and enjoy!

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Firstly I have to point out that this dinner is so so filling. Your taking out calories and carbs by hollowing out the rolls but I really promise you won’t miss them at all. I was absolutely stuffed after eating these gorgeous cheese-steaks which is just what you want from a good dinner. It definitely stopped me from raiding the fridge for snacks later on in the night! This recipe is great for serving hungry partners or kids at the end of the day. It doesn’t appear to be that healthy but with clever ingredients and getting rid of a bit of dough it makes for an amazingly tasty lighter version of the cheese-steaks we know and love. You all know how much of a cheese fiend I am. I am always tempted to add a bit of extra cheese on top of most things however with this recipe you don’t need to. The melted mozzarella and beef mix is to die for and settles even the biggest cheese lovers needs. Not to mention it is incredibly quick and easy to prepare. Give it a try yourself and let me know what you think!

 

Happy cooking!

 

Xx

Skinny meatballs in a Sriracha sauce glaze!

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Ingredients:

1kg lean Turkey mince

340g Breadcrumbs

2 eggs

85g spring onions

½ tsp. garlic powder

½ tsp. salt

½ tsp. black pepper

For the Sauce:

¼ cup Sriracha

3 Tbsp reduced-sodium soy sauce

3 Tbsp rice vinegar

3 Tbsp honey

1 Tbsp grated fresh ginger

3 cloves garlic, minced

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Method:

  • Pre heat the oven to 190 degrees C.
  • In a large bowl, mix together the turkey, breadcrumbs, eggs, green onions, garlic powder and salt/pepper.

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  • Shape the mixture into small meatballs. If made small you can get about 40 and if made a little bigger like a did you can get around 20.
  • Spray two baking sheets with low fat cooking oil.
  • Space your meatballs out evenly on the baking sheets and bake in the oven for 20-25mins or until browned. (For larger meatballs you will need to cook for around 35mins).
  • While the meatballs are baking, combine all the ingredients for the sauce in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat, whisking continuously.
  • Reduce heat and simmer for 8 to 10 minutes (the sauce will start to thicken) then toss with the meatballs.
  • I served mine with brown rice and topped with some spring onions.

If you are looking for an amazing meal prep option for lunches throughout the week this is the recipe for you. It is so unbelievably quick and easy to make. Including cooking time it only took me about 40mins! I’ve never used Sriracha sauce before and when I gave it a taste was like oh my goodness that is so hot! I am not one for spicy food so I was a little sceptical. However mixed with the honey and Soy sauce it really does create the perfect blend of sweet and spicy flavours. The sauce is seriously so tasty I would even have it over rice by itself. And guess what there are only 177 calories in 3 meatballs so what are you waiting for! As always if you do try the recipe let me know what you think and if you have any pictures I’ll feature them on my Facebook and Instagram.

Happy cooking!

Xx

Prosciutto wrapped poached eggs with potato, leek, cheddar and garlic hash

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Ingredients: (yields 3 helpings)

6 Slices of prosciutto ham

2 large leeks

900g potatos

1 clove garlic

50g low calorie cheddar

3 large eggs

2 tbsp bread crumbs

1 egg white, lightly beaten

3 Tbs. chopped fresh chives, plus more for garnish

2 tsp fresh lemon juice

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Method:

  • First we will start with poaching the eggs. As I have said before I have egg poaching cups which I just place in boiling water. (They really are brilliant and you can buy them from the likes of Amazon of Lakeland for a couple of pounds.) If you do not have poaching cups then don’t despair. You can spray two small microwaveable bowls with Frylight and crack an egg into each one. Season the eggs, pierce the yolks and cover with cling film. Microwave each egg on high for about 30 seconds. Keep an eye on them as they may pop in the microwave.

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  • Lay a slice of prosciutto on a cutting board and then place another on top. I feel two layers is best as one is a little thin. Place a poached egg at the centre of the top of the slice, then gently roll the egg down the middle, being careful not to break the yolk. Repeat with the remaining prosciutto slices and eggs. Set aside.
  • Now we are going to concentrate on the hash.
  • Finely chop the leeks and chives.
  • Peel the potato’s and then grate them.
  • Place the potatoes and leeks in kitchen towel and remove any excess liquid from them.
  • Now preheat the oven to 450°F or 210 Celsius in a fan assisted oven.
  • Put 2 tbsps of Olive Oil in a frying pan over a medium heat and cook the leeks for 4 to 5 mins.

leek

  • Let the leeks cool and then add them to a large mixing bowl with the grated potato, the egg white, bread crumbs, garlic, chives and the lemon juice. Stir until well combined. Season with salt and pepper.
  • In a large ovenproof  frying pan over medium heat, warm 1 1/2 Tbs. of the olive oil. Add the potato mixture.
  • Cook the mixture on the hob for about 15 minutes stirring frequently. Cook until nicely browned.
  •  Now move the pan to the oven and cook for a further 10 minutes you may also want to add a bit of grated cheese.
  • Meanwhile, in a non-stick fry pan over medium-high heat, warm the remaining 2 Tbs olive oil. Using a spoon, carefully transfer the wrapped eggs, seam side down, to the pan and cook, turning once, until the prosciutto is browned and crispy, about 1 1/2 minutes per side.
  • To serve dollop some potato mixture onto a plate (or like me put it in a square bowl and then turn it out) and add the egg parcels on top.
  • Garnish with chopped chives and your done!

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I am obsessed with this recipe! I tried it for the first time around 3 months ago and haven’t looked back. I literally have this at least once or twice a week. I have it for dinner but it makes a great option for brunch as well! If you don’t want to go through the hassle of making the hash the egg parcels also taste amazing on toast with a sneaky side of baked beans. The parcels take no time at all to whip up on their own and so it makes a great dinner option if you’ve had a long day at work and don’t want to expend too much energy cooking. Not to mention this meal leaves you feeling full and satified and has definitely stopped me snacking later on in the evening. I particularly like eating this meal on a cold rainy night as it is good old comfort food. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

Happy cooking! Xx

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Sausage and Egg McMuffins Healthy Version

Ingredients: Yields two double McMuffins 

6 Slimming world syn free sausages (or any lower calorie sausages of your choice)

1 calorie cooking spray (I use Frylight)

2 wholemeal baps

2 tablespoons Primula light cheese spread

1 teaspoon Rosemary

1 teaspoon Thyme

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Method:

  • Remove the skins from your sausages and squeeze the sausage meat into a large bowl.
  • Add the herbs to your meat and mix with your hands to combine.

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  • Now split the sausage meat into 4 equal parts. Shape each into a burger patty shape to fit inside the bun.
  • Spray the Frylight into a frying pan and heat over a medium heat. Add the burger patties to the pan.
  • Cook the patties for 5 minutes on each side or until it is obvious that they are cooked through.

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  • Whilst waiting for the patties to cook you can make your poached eggs. I am lucky because I have egg poaching cups which I just place in boiling water. (They really are brilliant and you can buy them from the likes of Amazon of Lakeland for a couple of pounds.) If you do not have poaching cups then don’t despair. You can spray two small microwaveable bowls with Frylight and crack an egg into each one. Season the eggs, pierce the yolks and cover with cling film. Microwave each egg on high for about 30 seconds. Keep an eye on them as they may pop in the microwave.
  • Now all you need to do is prepare your rolls. Stack the two patties one on top of the other and spread a little Primula light cheese on the top. (Note if you feel your McMuffun is too tall you can just keep it to one patty per bun.)
  • Finally top your Mcmuffin with your poached egg and viola!

Recently my attention has been brought to the idea of fakeaways (fake takeaways). Believe me before I started trying to loose weight I was the takeaway queen! Therefore the idea of being able to make healthier versions of my favourite delicious takeaways was far too good to pass up. I decided to start with breakfast because all too often at the weekend I will give in and allow myself to have something lovely and greasy like a fry-up or a sausage sandwich! I find it difficult to stick to a healthier breakfast at the weekend as I don’t have the routine I have during the working week. Usually I grab a quick healthy breakfast at my desk. At home on the weekend all the goodies in the kitchen beckon and its so hard to ignore when I am mere feet away from opening the fridge and stuffing my face! That’s where these fakeaway Mcmuffins come in. They truly are delicious and very filling. If I have these for breakfast I normally don’t have a big lunch at all as it really does set me up for the day. Also they are so easy to prepare which is great for sleepy Saturday/Sunday mornings when you want to put in as little effort as possible. The Frylight spray combined with the low fat (Syn-free) sausages means that you get all the taste but with much less fat! So why don’t you give them a try and see what you think. I dare you to not fall in love with this recipe it is just too tasty!

Happy cooking!

Xx

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Chocolate Bread Pudding!

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Ingredients: Serves 8

300ml/1.2 cup skimmed milk

100g pitted dates

250g brown bread (about 7 slices)

200ml/0.75 cup boiling water

25g/0.2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1 tsp dark vanilla extract

1 egg

30g/1 oz dark or milk chocolate

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Method:

  • Firstly we are going to start by making a syrup out of the dates. Combine the boiling water and dates in a small bowl and leave for 15 minutes until the dates are softened.
  • Pour the dates and water into a blender and blend until smooth.
  • Tear up the bread into small pieces in a large bowl. Then add the milk, date mixture, cocoa powder vanilla extract and beaten egg.
  • Mix the ingredients with a wooden spoon until well combined.
  • Grease a 8 x 5 inch baking dish and then evenly add the mixture to it.
  • Crush the dark chocolate into small pieces. (I put the chocolate into a sandwich bag and gave it a whack with a rolling pin.
  • Sprinkle the chocolate pieces evenly over the top of the mix.
  • Bake in the oven at 200 degrees C or 180 degrees C for fan assisted ovens.
  • Remove and eat while still warm and gooey!

Having been on a diet myself I’ve been finding that I am  craving something sweet particularly in the evenings after my dinner. This is the perfect after dinner treat to stave off those cravings! Yes when we hear the word chocolate we automatically think “oh no I can’t have that I’m on a diet and chocolate is a no no.” However there is so little chocolate in this dish that you can allow yourself to indulge without feeling guilty! Also this pudding is low in sugar as we obtain our sweet taste by making the date syrup so really its a win win all round! At 142 calories a slice you really can’t complain and it tastes awesome. The only hard part is stopping at one slice! I would love to know your thoughts on this recipe or if you have any ideas on how to adapt it to make it better. Feel free to contact me on any of my social media if you give it a try.

Happy cooking!

Xx

Low Calorie- Iced Lemon Cupcakes

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Ingredients

12 cupcake cases

Finely grated zest of 1 unwaxed lemon

2 large eggs

150ml low fat natural yogurt

2 tablespoons semi-skimmed milk

50ml sunflower oil

100g blueberries

75g golden caster sugar

1 teaspoon bicarbonate soda

200g self raising flower

For the icing:

4 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

100g icing sugar

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Method:

  • Firstly pre-heat your oven to 200 degrees C or 180 degrees for fan assisted ovens.
  • This recipe serves 12 so line a 12 whole muffin tray with your cupcake cases.

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  • Sift the flour and bicarbonate of soda into a large bowl and stir in the sugar, blueberries and lemon zest. Make a well in the centre. It is important to sift the flour so that there are no lumps.

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  • Beat the eggs with a large whisk until smooth, then beat in the yogurt, milk and oil until well combined. Stir into the flour mixture with a large metal spoon until very lightly mixed.
  • Divide the batter between the paper cases. Make sure not to overfill the cases as remember the cupcakes will rise.
  • Bake in the centre of the oven for 16–18 minutes or until the cupcakes are well risen and golden brown.
  • Transfer them to a wire rack and leave to cool.

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  • To make the lemon icing, mix the icing sugar and lemon juice in a small bowl until smooth and runny. Using a spoon, drizzle the icing over the cupcakes and leave to set for at least 30 minutes before serving.

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I was inspired to do a bit of baking this week as the Great British Bake off has just finished its last series here in the UK and I was looking for my weekly cake fix! Also I feel I have been concentrating a lot on savoury recipes and we need a little sweetness in our lives. Trust me things can get a little bland during the weekly routine if all you are eating is meat and veg so these cupcakes are the perfect wee pick me up. Not only are they absolutely delicious but they are also only 169 calories each! Make sure you have a few friends or kids that you can hand then out to as well as it would be easy to go to town on the hole batch! As always I would love to hear from you if you decide to try this recipe or have any ideas on how you would make it your own!

Happy cooking!

Xx

Breakfast: Healthy chocolate and blueberry muffins!

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Ingredients:

3 large eggs

1 medium banana

25g butter cubed

3 tablespoons maple syrup

1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate soda

1 teaspoon lemon juice

200g ground almonds

20g cocoa powder

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

125g blueberries

Method

  • Preheat oven to 200 degrees C or 180 degrees C for fan assisted ovens.
  • In a large mixing bowl break banana into chunks. Add the chopped butter and mash together with the back of a fork.
  • Add eggs, maple syrup, bicarbonate soda, lemon juice and vanilla extract. Whisk thoroughly ideally using an electric whisk.
  • Add ground almonds and cocoa powder. Whisk thoroughly for a second time.
  • Add the blueberries to the mixture and gently fold in with a large spoon.

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  • Grease a cupcake tin ideally with low cal spray and distribute the mixture between the cupcake moulds. (With this mixture you can usually make 9 large muffins or 12 medium depending on how you would like to distribute your mixture.)
  • **Top Tip: Try not to add too many blueberries to the one muffin cup as this will make the muffin very moist and more likely to fall apart.**
  • Put the muffins in the oven and cook for 20mins. You should know they are done if you touch then and they spring back slightly. If they still seem too squishy and moist leave them in for an additional couple of minutes.
  • Leave the muffins to cool and then gently remove from muffin tin and enjoy!

I created this recipe basing it on an earlier banana bread recipe I had shared with you guys. I really wanted something tasty and filling to start off my day. The canteen in my work does these amazing blueberry scones that are just soooo hard to resist. Therefore I set about to make a healthy alternative that also tastes amazing and here we are! I cant help but feel a little smug in the office knowing that my colleagues are munching away on these scones which have twice as many calories as the yummy muffins that I am eating (just kidding… sort of hehe). I make a batch of the muffins at the start of the week and keep them in the fridge for each day. Mind you they are so tasty they don’t last long at all in our house. Let me know if you get a chance to try them yourself and what you think!

Happy cooking!

Xx

 

No Flour delicious banana bread muffins!

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Ingredients: (Yields 12)

300g  ripe bananas (roughly 3 medium bananas)

3 large eggs

2 tablespoons of maple syrup – adjust to your taste

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

30g  butter

1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

200g ground almonds

1 tablespoon of whole flaxseed plus extra for decorating the top of your muffins

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Method:

  • Preheat your oven to 160 degrees.
  • In a large mixing bowl mash together the bananas and butter. (a fork works well for mashing).

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  • Now add the maple syrup, cinnamon, vanilla, eggs, bicarbonate of soda and lemon juice and mix well with a whisk.
  • Add the ground almonds and a tablespoon of whole flaxseed and mix well.
  • Grease your muffin tins with butter or low fat spray. Alternatively you can use individual muffin cases.
  • Spoon your batter evenly into each muffin cup and top with a pinch of flax seeds.
  • Bake in the oven for 20 minutes. You will know if the muffins are done by inserting a skewer into the middle and it coming out dry.
  • Allow muffins to cool and eat warm or at room temperature. Remember to store covered, in the fridge and most importantly enjoy!

**Note this recipe can also be used to make a loaf of bread. Use a bread loaf tin. Fill with the mixture and cook for 1hr 10mins. If the bread starts to brown too much during baking cover with a piece of tinfoil.

These little muffins have been a god send for my partner and I. We now have them every morning for breakfast and they make a great guilt-free snack for when you get peckish during the day. There is no flour, sugar or preservatives and each muffin is only 89 calories so you can have more than 1! The bananas, maple syrup and vanilla give these muffins a lovely sweet taste and so when I am craving something sweet this is now my go to snack. The bread is filling and will keep your energy levels up during the day. Almonds are full of Vitamin E and magnesium, and the Omega-3-rich flaxseed which is added means these muffins aren’t just delicious but nutritious as well. Not to mention they smell great when they come out the oven! As ever I would love to hear your feedback if you try this recipe.

Happy cooking!

Xx

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Omelette and Spinach cannelloni NO PASTA!

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Ingredients

500g Spinach

150g cream cheese  (could use ricotta cheese if preferred)

75g Parmesan cheese, grated

Nutmeg, grated

4-6eggs

4 tblspn water

1 tblspn olive oil

Salt and pepper

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Method:

  • Preheat the oven to 190C/375F degrees.

  • Cook the spinach until tender.  Mix with the cream cheese, half the Parmesan cheese and season with nutmeg, salt and pepper.

  • Whisk the eggs with the water and add a pinch of salt and pepper.
  • Heat the olive oil in a frying pan on a medium heat and pour in enough egg mixture to make a small, thin omelette.   Cook until firm and turn over to cook the over side.   Remove and place to the side.  Continue to do this until all of egg mixture is used.
  • Spoon some of the spinach mixture onto an edge of an omelette and roll up.  Place in a shallow gratin dish and repeat using all of the omelettes.
  • Sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan cheese and bake for 25 minutes.

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  • Eat and enjoy!

I was eager to try this recipe as I absolutely love cannelloni. I thought making it using omelettes would be a real challenge but it actually worked out really well. A good tip is not to overfill your omelette as they are quite thin and prone to splitting. This tasty recipe yields about four portions. The filling was lovely and can easily be adapted for your own tastes. I think next time I will throw in a bit of chicken into the spinach mix to pack it out a little more. This makes a great main as it is extremely filling and much healthier than the pasta versions you would be used to. The dish is packed with protein from both the omelette and Spinach so would be ideal to have after a workout. I really cant get enough of this one and urge you all to try it. Also it is a great way for those of us who are obsessed with cheese to get our fix! As usual let me know if you have tried this and send e your pictures if you would like.

Happy cooking!

Xx

 

Delicious Broccoli and potato soup

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Ingredients:

1 large head of broccoli

1 large potato peeled and chopped into cubes

1 Large white onion diced

2 cloves of garlic

500ml vegetable stock

250ml low fat milk

125ml water

Salt and pepper

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Method:

  • Cut the broccoli into roughly 1 inch pieces. You can cut and add a bit of the stem but discard the main stem.

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  • Put all the ingredients into a pot except the milk, salt and pepper.
  • Put on the lid of the pot and bring to the boil. Once boiling turn down the heat to medium and rapidly simmer for 8-10 minutes.
  • Remove the lid and add your milk. Now bring back to the boil and then remove from the heat altogether.
  • Now whizz the hand blender until thoroughly mixed together.
  • To thicken the soup cook it longer on the stove at a medium/low heat.
  • Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Serve with a side of your choice. (I have chosen some gorgeous wheaten bread that my talented partner made *recipe for this to follow).

I was a little sceptical of this recipe when I first made it. I’m not really sure why, maybe it was the colour of the soup that made my brain think this may be healthy but I bet it doesn’t taste great. Maybe the green reminded me of lettuce too much haha! Think again. This soup is so unbelievably tasty. I absolutely love it. Plus it is packed full of nutrients from all that veg! I like to have this recipe for dinner but it would make a great packed lunch too. It makes enough soup for about 3-4 servings so you could easily make it at the start of the week and just store it in the fridge. *I am lucky enough to have a partner who loves to bake. He inherited a great bread recipe from his lovely mum and was able to make us a great side for this dish. Bread isn’t very healthy as we all well know but when eaten in moderation it compliments this soup perfectly.

For those who are interested I will post the bread recipe up here as well shortly.

If you do try this recipe I would love to know what you thought of it and by all means send me some pictures if you’d like.

Enjoy and happy cooking!

Xx