2020 · Anglican · Blogging · Chocolate · Church of England · Clergy Wife · Dairy Free · England · Gluten Free · Left Handed · Rural · Supermarket · Tesco · Vicarage

An Afternoon of Tidying up & Dairy Free Chocolates

I have just Marie Kondo(ed) my study. I gathered about 2 bags of rubbish. They were mainly boxes that I had “saved” to use for my craft work but as it is always the case they ended up being clutter.

As a reward for all my hardwork, I treated myself to 4 small squares of NOMO Dairy Free Hazelnut Chocolate. I am not a chocoholic but I do like the occasional treat.

I came across NOMO Chocolates last week when I was online doing my grocery shopping and so added a bar to my shopping basket.

I would say that they are the best Dairy Free chocolates that I have tried so far. I would like to think that it tastes like Ferraro Rocher! Did you know that it does not contain nuts? I love Hazelnuts and I was convinced that it contained hazelnuts!!!!!

NB: I am not paid to endorse NOMO chocolates.

2020 · Anglican · Autumn · Blogging · Church of England · Clergy Wife · Dairy Free · Eco · England · Left Handed · Rural · Vicarage · Waitrose

Supermarkets Bags Policy

I got my Waitrose delivery yesterday afternoon. My main shopping delivery is from Tesco but I use Waitrose for luxury items as such as Booja Booja Vegan Ice Cream!

I was excited about my Waitrose delivery because they were to come in shopping bags. Yes, I am for plastic bags because it is cumbersome to collect your shopping without the bags.

Where am I to leave the groceries? I usually just dump mine in the vestibule while the delivery person twiddles their thumb. For health reasons, it is doubly difficult for me. The Mhinisteir helps me when he can but yesterday he was in a zoom meeting which means I was on my own.

The Waitrose delivery came on time but without the bags! According to the driver, the rules changed on Sunday so you have to opt for bags when you order and pay 40p. I don’t mind paying but when I ordered they had promised me bags.

The same happened with my Tesco delivery twice in the last 6 weeks. I got an email and a text message to remind me to opt for bags should I need them but there were no bags in sight when the delivery came. When the Mhinisteir asked the delivery person he was told that they had run out of bags!!!!!

I do care about the environment but I would like my bags too. I would prefer paper bags to plastic as they are more environmentally friendly.

I am very happy to pay for the bags but please just give us the choice instead of deciding for us!

2020 · Anglican · Baking · Bananas · Blogging · Cake · Church of England · Clergy Wife · Dairy Free · England · Food · Gluten Free · Left Handed · Rural · Uncategorized · Vicarage · Vicarage Kitchen

From the Vicarage Kitchen| Dairy and Gluten Free Banana Fritters

I had 3 bananas lurking in the freezer drawer. I didn’t want to make banana bread instead I fancied some Thai style banana fritters that I had in a restaurant here some time back. By the way, I have never been to the Land of smiles!

I am no expert but I am quite sure that the Thai style fritters required fresh bananas for they come as a whole fruit with the batter on the outside. It is usually served with honey.

I decided to experiment and came up with my own version using frozen bananas. They were quite yummy with dairy free vanilla ice cream served on the side


3 frozen bananas

100g Rice Flour

A pinch of salt and baking powder

1 tablespoon sugar (optional)

Oil for deep frying


  1. Add the frozen bananas, rice flour, salt and baking powder and mix them all together using a fork.
  2. Heat oil in medium heat for deep frying.
  3. Add the sugar if using to the gooey mixture.
  4. Using a spoon ( I used a teaspoon), gently drop a spoonful of the mixture in the hot oil and fry until it is cooked and is brown in colour.
  5. Drain the fritters in a kitchen towel.
  6. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.
  7. Enjoy!

2020 · Anglican · Blogging · Clergy Wife · Dairy Free · England · Faith · Gluten Free · Left Handed · Rural · Vicarage · Vicarage Kitchen

Prosecco Palava

I am teetotal and the Mhinisteir rarely drinks alcohol except for communion wine!

In Scotland, it was easier to be teetotal among Church settings: some people were recovering alcoholics and so alcohol was hardly served in social gatherings related to the Church.

In England, alcohol is a big part of social gatherings including in the Church. Once, I almost had a cardiac when champagne cocks were popped INSIDE the Church after an Ordination service. Nothing wrong with it. It’s just a cultural difference. I do get a little flustered whenever I am handed a glass of bubbly!

Yesterday we had a rare treat of dairy and gluten free pizza for dinner. It was both shop bought and home made. I bought a dairy and gluten free frozen pizza base in Waitrose and topped it with toppings of our choice and cooked it in the oven.

Unusually, there was a small bottle of Prosecco lurking in the Vicarage fridge which caught the Mhinisteir’s eye. He decided to have it with his pizza and so proceeded to open the bottle just that he was unsuccessful. I was puzzled that he couldn’t just twist open the lid. He decided to use a corkscrew! He was turning and twisting for at least 5 minutes. In the meantime, the pizza was turning old. Still no success! I was beginning to get impatient: I grabbed the bottle and twisted the lid and the next minute, the Mhinisteir was pouring the Prosecco into a wine glass!!!!

2020 · Blogging · Church of England · Clergy Wife · Coronavirus · Dairy Free · Diet · England · Fan · First World Problems · Garden · Left Handed · milk · Rural · Summer · Vicarage · Wildlife

Heat, Hair & Hedgehogs

animal pet cute baby
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

As I write this, it is 3.30pm in the afternoon and I have just had my second shower of the day: the heat has been so unbearable for the past few days.  It saps your energy: making me tired and a little grumpy ( according to the Mhinisteir, very grumpy).   I have been unable to sleep at night since the heatwave began.  In fact, it was almost 4am by the time I went to bed this morning.  Tiredness doesn’t help my health condition one bit.

Anyway, I had something to look forward to this lunchtime.  The hairdresser was due to visit: my second haircut since the lockdown rules were eased.  As usual, I was pleased with my haircut.  The short bob theme is coming along nicely.  The Mhinisteir too had his haircut.

As I was chatting to the hairdresser, I told her about something that I had read in the latest Country Living magazine: that hedgehogs are lactose intolerant!  She knew about it!  Am I the only one who has been in the dark about Hedgehogs and their dietary needs???

2020 · Blogging · Church of England · Clergy Wife · Dairy Free · England · Food · Gluten Free · Left Handed · Rural · Vegan · Vicarage · Waitrose

GU Dairy and Gluten Free Cheesecake


I rarely have shop bought desserts as dairy free desserts are very hard to come by.

While on my wee break last week, I came across GU Chocolate and Vanilla Cheesecake in Waitrose.  I had to do a double take because it was dairy and gluten free.  How fabulous!  I had to buy it and I am happy to report that I was not disappointed.  I really enjoyed it especially the subtle coconutty taste.  It costs me £3.50 for two.

It was on offer in Waitrose when I was there this afternoon.  I walked past secretly hoping that the Mhinisteir would add it to the trolley!  He did!!!

Now I must try and replicate this dessert at home.

NB: I am not paid by either Waitrose or GU to promote them.



2020 · Blogging · Church of England · Clergy Wife · Coronavirus · Dairy Free · England · First World Problems · Food · FT Weekend · God · Left Handed · Oreos · Rural · Scotland · Vicarage

Fried Oreos

FT Weekend, Life and Art, Page 3


Every Saturday,  I eagerly await the paperboy bringing the Weekend Edition of the Financial Times.  Yes, we do get our newspaper delivered and No, I am not in finance so please don’t be impressed!   I just love the weekend edition of the FT. With a section on homes and garden, lifestyle and fashion and a great selection of international news, it is just bliss.

One of the sections that I most look forward to reading is called LUNCH WITH FT.   An interview is done with a well known person at a restaurant of the interviewee’s choice but paid for by FT.  With post covid, the arrangement is slightly different, the interviewer and the interviewee are usually in different countries so they arrange for their own lunch but still paid for by the FT.

We the readers are privy to the name of the restaurant, the dishes consumed and the total cost.  I always make it a point to read this information first before I read the interview.  On rare occasions, I have been put off by the meal choice that I have refused to read the interview.

Last weekend, LUNCH WITH FT was with a Jim Chanos,   I was so put off by his dessert choice of Fried Oreos that I skipped the interview altogether.  Fried Oreos?

Some might say that I should be the last person to comment on Fried Oreos.  Does Fried Mars Bars ring a bell?????



2020 · Blogging · Church of England · Clergy Wife · Dairy Free · England · Fish · Food · Gluten Free · Left Handed · Rural · Vicarage · Vicarage Kitchen

From the Vicarage Kitchen – Dairy & Gluten Free Fish Pie

IMG_0084Waiting to go into the oven but forgot to take a photo when it came out!!!


I love fish and a good fish pie.  I know from experience that it is impossible to find dairy & gluten free Fish Pie on a restaurant menu but that shouldn’t stop us allergy sufferers from creating one ourselves!   This fish pie is not only tasty but it is easy to make.   The recipe is as follows:

Dairy & Gluten Free Fish Pie (Serves 3- 4)


500g Fish Pie Mix.  (I get mine from my fishmonger.  If you can’t get fish pie mix, make up your own.  You will need about 350g white fish such as haddock and 150g of smoked haddock.  I like to add a bit of salmon to my mix.  The addition of salmon makes it luxurious!)

300ml dairy free milk ( I used rice milk)

1 onion peeled

1 bay Leave

1 tbsp olive oil

75g gluten free flour

3 hard boiled eggs – shelled and cut into quarters

Salt (You can add pepper too if you like)


4 medium sizes Potatoes  ( I used organic potatoes)

olive oil (about 3-4 tbsp)



1. Preheat oven to 200c.

2. Put the fish pie mix, milk, onion, and bay leave in a saucepan and bring to boil over a gentle heat.

3. Simmer for 2 minutes and then remove from heat.

4. Cool for 30 minutes.

5. Strain and reserve the liquid. Discard the onion and bay leave.

6. Flake the fish and remove any bones.

7. Heat olive oil in a saucepan and add the flour. Cook for about 1 minute.  Gradually add the reserved liquid while stirring all the time.

8. Take it off the heat and add the flaked fish.  Add the quartered boiled eggs and season well.  Pour the mixture into a pie dish.

9.  Bake in a hot oven for 20 minutes or until the potatoes turn a golden brown and start to colour.

10.  Serve with peas.

11. Enjoy!





2020 · Baking · Blogging · Cake · Church of England · Clergy Wife · Dairy Free · England · Food · Freezer · Gluten Free · Handmade · Rural · Vicarage · Vicarage Kitchen

My Secret Cake Stash

I try to have a secret cake stash tucked away in our freezer.

Whenever I bake a cake, once it has cooled,  I cut two small pieces of the cake, put them in a foil and stash them away in the freezer.

On a day like yesterday, when I felt like a cake with my cup of tea but didn’t have any freshly baked cake, I raid the freezer.  I never label my cakes because one is ever so grateful to get their hands into ANY cake (Tried and Tested Method😬) !

2020 · Blogging · Church of England · Clergy Wife · Dairy Free · England · Food · Gluten Free · God · Left Handed · Roast Chicken · Rural · Vicarage · Vicarage Kitchen

From the Vicarage Kitchen |Dairy & Gluten Free|Simple Roast Chicken with Gravy

I love a good roast chicken.  Roast Chicken is what we have for lunch most Sundays.   It is so easy to prepare as the oven does all the hard work and the chicken ALWAYS comes out moist.  You can’t go wrong! The recipe for my simple roast chicken is as follows:

Simple Roast Chicken

1 Whole Free Range Chicken

1 Whole Lemon

A few cloves of garlic

About 3 tablespoons of olive oil

Salt and Pepper to season


  1. Preheat oven to 150c.
  2. Pop the chicken into a roasting tin along with the unpeeled cloves of garlic.
  3. Rub the olive oil all over the chicken.
  4. Cut lemon in half.  Squeeze one half all over the chicken.  Place the other half (unsqueezed) inside the cavity of the chicken. Place the squeezed half in the tin.
  5. Season the chicken well with salt and pepper.  I like to use Maldon salt flakes.
  6. Pop the chicken in the preheated oven for about 2 hours.   You will notice that the temperature is lower than usual recommended temperature for roast chicken.  It will take longer for the chicken to cook but the chicken will come out super moist.
  7. Remove the chicken from the oven.  Make sure that the juice is clear when pierced.
  8. Once cooked, let chicken rest for at least 10 minutes.
  9. In the meantime, mash the roasted garlic(that was roasting with the chicken) in the pan and mix it in the pan with the juice from the chicken which will become the gravy.
  10. Strain the gravy into a gravy boat and remove the excess oil that would have gathered at the top.
  11. Carve the Chicken and serve it with roast potatoes, vegetables, Yorkshire pudding and gravy.
  12. Enjoy!

Tip:  Pop the carcass into a bag and into the freezer to make your own stock for soups etc at a later date.  That way, nothing of the bird is wasted.