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Hello my name is Donna. Thanks for visiting. I live in an Edwardian house in inner city Manchester, I love Baking, car booting, hunting around charity shops, and crafting.I work full time.I have two grown up children. And lots of spare time.

Saturday, 24 February 2018

Ginger pineapple Pork

I found a recipe on another blog that looked really tasty so I thought i'd give it ago. Well I have to give him meat sometimes.

It was really easy to make and it was delicious

I'm off out tonight with work to the Indian tiffin room  for a belated birthday celebration. 

Thursday, 22 February 2018


After the success of the last couple of day I wanted to try STICKY SESAME CAULIFLOWER BITES. 

They were so easy to make. I didn't put too much sauce on them though as i'me taking them to work for my lunch with some salad. 

Here's the recipe 


  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 2 whole egg whites
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil or vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup low sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sweet chili sauce or sriracha
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • toasted sesame seeds, for garnish
  • chopped green onions, for garnish


  1. Preheat oven to 400F.
  2. Lightly grease a baking sheet with cooking spray and set aside.
  3. Add egg whites to a large ziploc bag; add cauliflower florets, close the bag, and shake it around until everything is well combined. 
  4. In a separate ziploc bag combine panko crumbs, paprika, cumin, garlic powder, salt, and pepper; add cauliflower florets to the bag, close it, and shake it around until everything is well combined.
  5. Transfer cauliflower florets to previously prepared baking sheet; bake for 15 to 18 minutes, or until tender and lightly browned.
  6. In the meantime, prepare the sauce.
  7. In a nonstick skillet set over medium heat, combine sesame oil, honey, soy sauce, vinegar, chili sauce and garlic; bring to a simmer.
  8. Simmer for 10 minutes. 
  9. In a small mixing bowl combine cornstarch and water and stir until cornstarch is dissolved.
  10. Add cornstarch mixture to soy sauce mixture and stir to combine; remove from heat.
  11. Remove cauliflower florets from oven and either add them to the sauce OR pour sauce over the florets. Mix until well combined.
  12. Garnish with toasted sesame seeds and green onions.
  13. Serve as appetizer or serve over rice.

Wednesday, 21 February 2018

A vegetarian recipes

Because Natasha is a vegetarian  we tend to have a few meat free meals a week. Geoff doesn't seem to mind and to be quite honest I much prefer them.

I didn't know what to cook yesterday. I was having a look around instagram and came across Jamie Oliver's post he had just made a pasta dish that looked simple and delicious.

I had all the ingredients in. So I thought I would give it a go.

It was lovely and very filling.


  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 onion
  • 1 fresh red chilli
  • 15 g fresh thyme
  • 250 g chestnut mushrooms
  • 320 g cauliflower
  • olive oil
  • 200 g wholewheat penne
  • 15 g fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 100 g ricotta cheese
  • 1 lemon
  • 20 g Parmesan cheese



  1. Fill a large pan with salted water, place on a high heat and bring to the boil.
  2. Meanwhile, peel and finely slice the garlic and onion, then halve, deseed and finely slice the chilli. Pick the thyme leaves.
  3. Trim and slice three-quarters of the mushrooms. Trim the cauliflower, remove and discard the leaves, then chop the cauliflower florets and stalk into small chunks.
  4. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a wide saucepan on a medium heat, add the garlic, onion, chilli and thyme, then cook gently for 10 minutes, or until golden.
  5. Add the sliced mushrooms and cauliflower, cover with a lid and cook gently for about 10 minutes, or until softened.
  6. Meanwhile, add the pasta to the boiling water and cook for 10 to 12 minutes, or until al dente – this means it’s cooked, but still has a bit of bite.
  7. Meanwhile, pick and finely chop the parsley leaves. Trim and very finely slice the remaining mushrooms.
  8. Once softened, mash the cauliflower mixture with a fork until broken down, but still with a bit of texture. Stir in the ricotta, then season to taste with sea salt, black pepper and the juice from half the lemon.
  9. Reserving a cupful of the cooking water, drain the pasta and return it to the pan, off the heat. Tip in the sauce and stir well, adding splashes of the cooking water to loosen, if needed. Taste and season with salt, pepper and the remaining lemon juice.
  10. Stir in the sliced raw mushrooms, most of the Parmesan cheese and half of the parsley leaves. Serve with the remaining chopped parsley and cheese sprinkled on top.
Tomorrows dinner is another Vegetarian offering.Apparently it's better the next day.  I can take this to work with me and have it later. 


For the Chickpea Meatloaf

  • 2-14 oz. cans or 3 1/3 cups cooked chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup unflavored soy or almond milk
  • 3 tbsp. vegan Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tbsp. soy sauce or tamari
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 tbsp. ground flax seeds
  • 2 tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1 tsp. liquid smoke
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper

For the Maple Glaze

  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 2 tbsp. maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp. soy sauce or tamari
  • 1 tsp. paprika


  1. Preheat oven to 375°. Lightly oil a 9 inch loaf pan.
  2. Working in batches if needed, place all meatloaf ingredients into food processor bowl and pulse until chickpeas are broken up and ingredients are well mixed, stopping to scrape down sides of bowl as needed. Do not overblend. If working in batches, transfer each batch to a large mixing bowl when complete and then mix by hand.
  3. Press mixture into prepared loaf pan and bake 30 minutes.
  4. While meatloaf bakes, stir glaze ingredients together in a small bowl.
  5. Remove loaf from oven after 30 minutes and spoon glaze overtop of loaf. Bake another 20-25 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool at least 10 minutes before cutting.

Recipe Notes

The longer this sits, the firmer it gets. If it initially feels a bit soft for your liking, let it sit a for a few minutes or prep it a day in advance and reheat the day of serving.

Heres mine cooling. 

Tuesday, 20 February 2018

Happy World Handcuff day

That's right!   February 20th is National Handcuff day!

It's on this date in 1912 that the US Patent office issued patent 1,017,955 to George A. Carney for a "swinging bow ratchet - type" adjustable handcuff. Before that handcuffs were heavy and bulky and there was no standard style. Carney's design was always ready and was light weight compared to older models. Since that patent, most modern handcuffs around the world have been made with the same swing through design, with minor modifications. The Carney Patent was bought by The Peerless Handcuff Company of Springfield, Mass., and the first models were manufactured for them by Smith & Wesson

Monday, 19 February 2018

Menopause and the problems that come with it

I have been waking up between 4am and 5 am for a few weeks now on fire  and have blamed a number of things Geoff snoring, I have slept next to him for the last 33 years and he never woke me before.

My big boy Pudding jumping on the bed to wake me up!

My thyroid is suffer with an underactive thyroid. 

I took HRT for a couple of years and the GP and I decided |I had been on them long enough and |I came off them. That was over a year ago now and all of a sudden these symptoms have come back.

I am constantly tired I have to have a nap every afternoon.

Today I thought enough is enough and I have made an appointment to see my GP and try and get it sorted. I really don't want to take conventional meds. So will get some advice on what alternative natural hormone replacement I can get.I have to do that because so much interferes with my thyroxine  and if that's not working i'me in trouble!

Off to IKEA today to have a mooch at the kitchens   

Saturday, 17 February 2018

Chinese New Year

We celebrated Chinese New year with some lovely food from good old M&S. I had a voucher left from Christmas and an offer on my Sparks card so got the lot for £12.00.

It was really tasty as well

It's Geoff's Birthday today so we are out to dinner tonight at his favorite Greek restaurant which is local to us.

It's  also Richard and Judy's they liked it that much they gave Loula a job on this morning cooking Greek Food.

We will have a family dinner and cake tomorrow. 

Friday, 16 February 2018

Making money and saving money

I have found another receipt app that on the face of it seem quite good. There is a time bonus with this one so you have to take the picture on the day opposed to receipt hog where I save them all up and do it in one go.

The new App is called   Shoppix. I have only been doing it a week and already I have quite a ew tokens.  

Could I ask you to use my referral link if you sign up please. CZU422SW  Thank you in advance. 

Now on to the saving I have been using Plum it's a great little app on my phone that grabs money and saves it for me. And it shows me how much i've spent on a weekly and daily basis. 

Apply via our link and keep your account active (don't pause savings) and you'll get a £5 bonus added to your account within 30 days of Plum making your first automatic save.

If you decide to use it please use my referral link.


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