Here in the Vicarage we get our weekly groceries delivered usually by Tesco. Occasionally it will be Morrisons or Waitrose. This week, I decided to cancel our Tesco delivery in favour of an Ocado delivery. I have had an Ocado account for more than a year now but have never been able to get a slot so have never had an Ocado delivery before. I was even beginning to wonder if it was too good to be true that they deliver to our rural village. But then why allow me to have an account if that wasn’t the case?
Anyway, as I was filling my online basket on Tesco.com, I realised that they had run out of most of my usual items. Thanks to my sudden craving for doughnuts, I was also looking for a gluten and dairy free doughnut mix which I soon realised was only sold on Ocado. Without putting too much thought, I logged in to my account so imagine my delight when I realised that there was a slot available for this Friday! I went ahead to fill my Ocado basket and the delivery for Friday was confirmed.
Since I had an Ocado delivery in the bag, I decided to cancel my Tesco delivery.
On Tuesday morning, as I was coming out of the shower, I heard a noise. Strange as the Mhinisteir was out for a meeting and wasn’t expected back until after lunchtime. I wasn’t expecting any delivery either. I decided to check it out anyway in case there was an intruder in the house!
Imagine my horror when I saw the Tesco delivery van driving off!!!!!!! The groceries were neatly left on the doormat! Oh my goodness!!!!! I went to check my email to make sure that there was one confirming my cancellation but sadly there wasn’t one!
I was so looking forward to my Ocado delivery but now I won’t be needing another delivery this week. I decided to go to Ocado’s website and see if I could rearrange my delivery. Thankfully I was able to which means that I will have an Ocado delivery next week.
I know this is not the weather for fruit salads but I had a sudden craving for it on Sunday! The Vicarage fruit bowl was filled to the brim with fruits. It gave me the perfect opportunity to make some fruit salad as part of our Sunday Lunch. The main course was Coq Au Vin.
I used pears, oranges, bananas, blue berries, strawberries and melon balls to make my salad. My secret ingredients were a pinch of salt and a small can of Schweppes lemonade!
I have never prepared fruit salad this way but it tasted heavenly with a scoop of Swedish Glace non dairy vanilla ice cream!
The Mhinisteir said he enjoyed it but I think he would have preferred a warm dessert like sticky toffee pudding!
With the nights drawing in and the weather cold, I have started cooking comfort food like fish pies and casseroles.
One Friday night, the Minister and I were tucking into our home made fish pie when I told him that my favourite ingredient in the fish pie was the salmon. In turn, I asked him what his favourite ingredient was to which he answered ” I like the sliced boiled egg”!!!! Boiled egg?????????? I might as well have served him boiled egg with white sauce covered in mash!!!!
Here in our part of England, we have had rain for most days for the last four weeks. Every time I look out of the window, it is either raining or it has just stopped raining! We don’t usually get this much of rain. In fact, as I write this, it has started raining yet again. I am slightly annoyed that I have not been able to go for my wee walks.
There was a bar of dark cooking chocolate lurking about in the pantry and I decided that this will be the day that I make something with it so here is the recipe for my dairy and gluten free Chocolate and Walnut Cookies.
150g – 70% Dark Chocolate (100g for melting, 50g to be chopped in chunk)
*dark chocolates are usually dairy free but please check the ingredients.
125ml – Olive oil
125g – Caster Sugar
1 – egg (beaten)
200g – Gluten Free Self Raising Flour
50g – Chopped Walnuts
1/2tsp – Sea Salt Flakes
Preheat oven to 180C and line a large baking sheet.
Melt 100g of chocolate over a pan of simmering water or in the microwave.
Beat the Olive oil, egg and sugar in a bowl until smooth. Add the melted chocolate. Stir in the chocolate chunks and the walnuts.
Stir in the flour and roll the mixture into 16 small balls.
Place the balls on the baking tray and press down to flatten a little.
Bake for 18-20 minutes.
Sprinkle the sea salt flakes as soon as the cookies are removed from the oven.
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!!!!!
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
Add the frozen bananas, rice flour, salt and baking powder and mix them all together using a fork.
Heat oil in medium heat for deep frying.
Add the sugar if using to the gooey mixture.
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.
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!!!!
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.