Seasons in Tenterden

I just had to quickly tell you about this ace little cafe I found whilst on holiday in Kent and Sussex this week. We took a drive to the very lovely Tenterden to pick up some bits and bobs and grab some lunch and stumbled upon Seasons. This very lovely family run cafe provides an excellent range of gluten free goodies, not only were there plenty of typical gluten free items ie soup and jackets but they also prepare made to order sandwiches and toasties. I had a deliciously simple ham and cheese toastie made with local farmhouse cheddar and yummy thick cut ham.

They also displayed a fair old range of big fat gluten free cakes but I didn’t partake this time however we’ve got a couple of days left and they also do breakfast – the thought if being able to order a gluten free bacon sarnie IN AN ACTUAL CAFE is almost to much for me to comprehend!!! Anyways thought I’d share this little gem with you as it’s not often you find somewhere out I the sticks that caters so well for coeliacs.

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Marks and Spencer’s Gluten Free Chocolate Muffins

Marks and Spencer’s Gluten Free Chocolate Muffin

Marks and Sparks are doing pretty well at this whole gluten-free lark, I happened to be in need of a little respite in the Croydon branch today so decided to have a little nosey at what one might purchase for elevenses in their Cafe Revive and what did I find? Choice, that’s what.  There were not only these pretty damn delicious and intensely chocolatey muffins, there were fruit cakes, sandwiches and the offer of a wrapped gluten-free roll with their soups.  Yes that’s right, you are not hallucinating, as well as the usual standby of jacket potatoes there was quite a selection of both sweet and savoury offerings for us gluten sensitive coeliacs.  So I salute you M&S, well done, and I think I shall be returning around lunch time next week for a taste of one of the more substantial savoury offerings.

I’ll keep you posted dear readers but in the mean time, what about you?  Found any more new and exciting gluten-free morsels on the high street?  Let me know!

1 Curry Sauce 3 Ways

So last week I made that chickpea curry here, well guess what, I had some left over sauce and managed to stretch it out into 3 different dishes over the week with leftovers for lunch (I didn’t count the leftovers in the title).   Pretty smart huh? Anyways want to know the details of my genius? (I’ll stop with the sickening over confidence now)

1.  I started with the curry sauce on Sunday and made this lovely chickpea curry, then I portioned off some of that and added the leftovers of my roast into a tub and packed that up for lunch.

Chickpea Curry

2.  On Tuesday night I roasted off some aubergine chunks and boiled some lentils then plonked them all in a pot with half of the remaining curry sauce.  This provided me with dinner for one and a portion for lunch the next day.  For dinner I served it with a garlic flat bread using Isabel’s fantastic gluten free pizza dough mix smothered in garlic butter.

Aubergine and Lentil Curry with Gluten Free Garlic Flat Bread

3.  Then the final dish was a baked egg in curry sauce with peas and a gluten free pitta (or 2).  I poured the leftover sauce into a small baking dish (I heart Falconware!), cracked in an egg and baked in the oven at 200 for about 20 minutes.  Just before it was ready I boiled up some peas, scattered them across and toasted a pitta to dip in.

Curry Baked Egg with Peas and Pitta

So my dear readers, what d’ya think?  Nifty huh? Hope you like it x

Quick Chickpea Curry

I’ve got 2 Cadbury’s Creme Eggs and a packet of Minstrels in the fridge and I’m feeling guilty so thought I’d knock up a healthy veggie curry for lunch that could double up as one of my weekday packed lunches leaving enough sauce to spare to make something quick and spicy for tea in the week – multi tasking food, you see that?  What more do you want? Anyway by my wonderful diet logic if I eat one healthy meal that means I can deffo have eaten at least one of those creme eggs by the end of the day, it’s a simple balanced equation right?

This curry is quick and simple to knock up and is pretty much made with store cupboard ingredients, in fact if you don’t have chickpeas, a tin of beans, some lentils or whatever veggies you have lurking about in your fridge would all make welcome additions to this spicy sauce.

So here we go…

Serves 2 with left over sauce for another meal in the week

Ingredients:

  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 1 tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 2 heaped teaspoons of medium curry powder
  • 1 heaped teaspoon of garam masala
  • 3 fat cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • a thumb sized piece of ginger, finely chopped
  • A dessert spoonful of mango chutney
  • 1 tin of coconut milk (I used half fat – cus this is like diet food innit)
  • 1 tin of chickpeas

Method:

Soften the onions in a pot with a tablespoon of oil until translucent, add the ginger and garlic and fry for a minute or two.  Add the spices and let them fry for a further minute then add the tomatoes and let it bubble down for about 5 minutes, stirring now and then to prevent it from catching.  Add the chutney, salt and  coconut milk, then blitz with a hand blender (or in a machine), return to the heat and bring to the simmer.  This is where you can now syphon off half the sauce and stash in the fridge or freezer until a later date. Now add the drained and rinsed chick peas to the pot.  Simmer the chickpeas for a further couple of minutes until everything is heated through then serve.  I served mine with a gluten free pitta for lunch and I’ll be having the other portion for lunch on Monday with a bit of tonight’s left over roast chicken dinner stirred in, I love a bit of leftovers don’t you?

Two Sausage Stew

This was a quick casserole type dish I knocked up in the week and have had subsequently for lunch and tonight’s dinner, it’s pretty straightforward to make and consists of mainly storecupboard and standard fridge contents.  The chorizo permeates through the whole dish and makes this a very moreish bowl of supper.

Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 6 gluten free sausages (I used those ones by that Irish guy Rankin but throw in your favourites), each chopped into six bitesize pieces
  • About quarter of a ring of chorizo, chopped into small chunks
  • 2/3 large handfuls of green lentils (I didn’t measure so think about the amount of people you are trying to feed and wing it)
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 1 large carrot, quartered lengthways and chopped into fine chunks
  • 1 stick of celery, split and chopped
  • 1 tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 1 clove of garlic, chopped
  • A glass of red wine
  • A big squirt of ketchup
  • lots of fresh ground pepper

Method:

Fry off the sausages and chorizo in the bottom of a heavy pot until browned.  Soften the onions, celery and carrots in a bowl in the microwave then add with the garlic to the pot.  Fry for a minute or so then splosh in the red wine, let it reduce for a moment or so then add the tomatoes, ketchup and pepper.  Wash and then add the lentils and top up with about half to a can full of water.  Top with a lid and simmer for about 25 min or until lentils are tender.  Adjust the seasoning if necessary, I didn’t need to add any salt to this because the chorizo and sausages seemed to salt it enough so give it a taste and see.  Serve alone in a bowl or with crusty bread.

Sunshine Soup

This is a super quick  supper dish, sweet potatoes spiced with Carribean curry and tempered with creamy coconut milk.  Just as yummy on a bright sunny day like today as in the deep dark winter.  It’s really simple to make, have a go…

Ingredients:

2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into about 1cm ish cubes

1 onion, chopped

A dessert spoon of Carribean or Jamaican curry powder

Half a tin of coconut milk ( i used half fat)

2 teaspoons of veg bouillon or a veg stock cube

About 1/2 a pint of boiling water, add more to thin if needed

Salt and pepper

Method:

Soften the onions.  Add curry powder and fry for a min then add chopped sweet potato.  Pour in coconut milk and boiling water to cover, add bouillon or stock cube and simmer for 10 min or until the sweet potato is tender.  Whizz with a hand blender, season genourously and add extra water to thin to desired consistency. Maybe a little cheeky swirl of cream seeing as I was so healthy using the half fat cocounut milk and all and done!

Carrot and Cumin Soup

Ingredients:

4 large carrots

1 onion

1 leek

1 desert spoonful of cumin

1 veg stock cube

Salt and pepper

Method:

Chop the onion, leek and 1 carrot into small bits.  Soften in a pan or microwave. 

Begin to fry veg base, add cumin and fry for a minute.

Add 3 sliced carrots.

Stir.  Add stock cube.  Cover with boiling water.

Simmer until carrots are tender.

Whiz with a blender.  Add salt and pepper.

Sieve (optional).

Serve….