Tasty Hoisin Duck

I found this rough receipe in a book and mixed a few things up with it and it turned out really tasty so thought to share it.


2 duck breasts, skin on
[You can get these from Makro – its around £6 for 2, or £11 for 4]


1 teaspoon five-spice powder
1 tablespoon sesame oil
3 tablespoons hoisin sauce
3 tablespoons soft brown sugar
3 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon dark soy sauce

Marinade the Duck

Pour all marinade ingredients into a bowl and mix. Pour the mixture into a sealable bag and add the duck. Seal the bag, place in fridge and marinade for as long as possible, however 20 minutes is fine (apparently) – I did it the night before so close to 20 hours.

Cook it!

1. Heat the oven to Gas mark 6 (200’C).
2. Heat a pan over a high heat.
3. Remove duck from marinade and pat dry.
4. Place duck in pan skin down and cook for about 1 minute and turn over and cook until other side is golden brown.
5. Place on an oven tray and cook in oven for 15 to 20 minutes
6. Serve

It turned out so tasty, and I encourage you to try it 🙂

Spicy Chicken

After making several dishes of chicken, with many different flavours I wanted something a little hotter than the dishes I had so far. So I thought… a marinade of something and see what happens. I know that its best to marinade for a few hours but I didn’t have that much time but it worked out quite well.

The Marinade

I made a marinade of

1 tbsp of lemon Juice
2 tbsp of Olive Oil
1 Naga Chilli finely chopped
1 tsp Habanero powder
2 tsp Coriander Leaf
1 tsp Ground Cuman
1 tsp Tumeric
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp Fresh Garlic
1 tsp Fresh Ginger

All mixed together and mixed into the chicken. I stuck it in the fridge for about 90 minutes to marinade.

The Sauce

2 tablespoons of oil
3 onions finely chopped
350ml Chopped Tomatoes
Spoon full of chopped Garlic
1 Green chilli pepper sliced

Fry the onions in some oil for a few minutes to brown them
Add garlic and chilli pepper
Add tomatoes
Blend onions mixture into a pulp
Heat until all cooked through (Takes about 5 minutes)

To Complete

Heat some oil hot, and add the marinaded chicken. Cook turning often and stiring to cook through. Once cooked through, add the sauce and continue to heat and mix.

Serve with some rice, or a naan bread.

I packaged several away into foil trays ready for another day. It was quite spicy but not too hot. Just the right heat for me.

Bulk ingredients make nice dishes

At the moment I’m cutting down on as many costs as possible but also wanting to eat generally healthy at the same time. I’ve came across many receipes that are cheap to make, and quite tasty.

I often buy bulk amounts of ingredients and then cook up several things and make single portions so I can make them faster from the freezer. Microwave meals with what I know has been put in them.

For the past month or so, my freezer has been empty except for a bag of prawns, and ice cubes. Tonight, it is quite full again – with lots of meals cooked up.

I’ve been using all fresh ingredients, getting veg from the local farms with whatever is in season and chicken from places like Makro – they had an offer for about £10 for 2.5KG of chicken breasts… so been making up things today.

Some of my menu for the following few weeks:

  • Mango Chicken
  • Chicken Jalfrezi
  • Chicken Curry
  • Piri Piri Chicken
  • Spicy Chicken

From what I’ve tasted today, its going to be a good set of meals.

Spicy BBQ Shreaded Pork

When I’ve been out I’ve always enjoyed shreaded pork from takeaway places and wondered how to make it myself. I thought it was difficult and expensive but turns out I was wrong. I read up online on several sites how to make some and made my own version using the same baseline of how its put together using ingredients I enjoy for seasoning.

It turned out a lot better than I expected it too, and it was great for a saturday. The weather is getting nicer, spring seems to have arrived and to have something that I didn’t really need to do much with and make great sandwidges with, all I can say is its turned out well and now I can make something more.

The cost for the whole receipe came to around £7.50


* Pork Shoulder / Pork Roast
* 2 onions, sliced and deviced
* 1 onion, chopped (Optional)
* Juice of 2 limes
* 1 green bell pepper
* 1 Jar BBQ Sauce
* 1 tablespoon of olive oil (Optional)

Seasoning Mix Ingredients (cost around £1)

Season Mix blitzed
Seasoning Mix Blitzed

* 3 chillis de-seeded & finely chopped
* Around a 2cm cubed piece of ginger finely chopped
* 3 cloves of garlic
* A few Black Pepper corns
* A little Salt

Create the seasoning:

Method 1:

Chop ingredients and mix in a bowl

Method 2:

Place in food processor and let that blitz the ingredients together. This is the way I did it.

How to make the dish

I have used a slow cooker to create this dish, but its also possible to use an oven and slow cook using a low heat however I found a slow cooker was more economic and simple enough to use. My instructions are for what I use, you may need to look elsewhere for heat settings for an oven.

1. Prepare the seasoning mix
2. Place 1 sliced onion at bottom of pot
3. Place pork on top of onions
4. Cover pork with seasoning mix
5. Top with remaining onion, and add chopped peppers
6. Drizzle with lime juice
7. Cover with pan lid
8. Cook on a high heat for 6 hours
9. Remove meat & veg
10. Discard juices
11. Shread pork using two forks to pull it apart
12. Return pork to the pan
13. Pour and mix in BBQ sauce
14. Cover with lid and heat on low for 1 hour or more
15. Fry chopped onions in a little oil to how you like them (Optional)
16. Serve

Works well in bread buns.

The shreading of the pork, pulling it apart took quite a while to do but it did pull away so easily. The meat turned out to just work so well in this dish, and was almost falling apart when I took it out of the pan in stage 9… but overall it worked well. Not sure when I’ll manage to eat it all but glad others are coming over to join in. Hope they enjoy it as much as I am.

An Added Heat Twist…?

I’ve thought that if I was to add to the seasoning mix a naga jolokia chilli blitz into this, it would make for a Hot shot version but thats not for people in general. The heat of those things are an aquired taste. Most people do not taste anything more after the heat has hit them and we don’t want to waste the lovely flavours. I didn’t add much heat to this one and it is delicious and one to share in a party I’d think.

The end look of it:

Shreaded Pork in a BBQ Sauce: The End Result
Shreaded Pork in a BBQ Sauce: The End Result

Enjoy, I have and will again!

Naga Jolokia Chilli Popcorn

I wanted a snack, something spicey, cheap and tasty so I thought… Popcorn is easy to make and in general quite healthy for you unless you add loads of sugar (which I like) – Add some chilli I thought and it came out delicious so I share it with you all.


  • Vegitable oil
  • Popcorn
  • Naga Bin Jolokia Chillies paste (Available here, and here)
  • Optional: Sugar


  1. Vegitable oil to coat bottom of pan
  2. Add about half to a teaspoon of Naga Jolokia Chilli paste
  3. Heat up and stir to mix the chilli into the oil
  4. Add popcorn to cover about 3/4 of the bottom of the pan
  5. *Optional* Add 2 tablespoons of sugar to cover popcorn for sweetness
  6. Cover Pan and heat on a medium to high heat
  7. Wait for popping
  8. Wait for popping to slow to almost stopped
  9. Remove from heat, stir and serve


It was a nice change, quick and cheap to make and will most likely suprise people when they try it. It starts as a tingle heat and seems to get hotter the more you have.

I once made regular chilli popcorn for a church event. I told people I was bringing chilli popcorn, they didn’t seem to grasp the chilli part. Almost every person tried some and liked the first taste, but after a few then people went for Water of all things… we told them milk but they didn’t listen.

Some of the group loved it and ate the rest. People tended to listen more after I said things after that. Strange coincidence, or just looking after themselves?

Garlic & Ginger Chicken Mix with Red Wine

I fancied something different tonight, and had a look through the fridge and found a variety of ingredients that all looked tasty and now mixed tastes quite awesome. Its great what can you can make with fresh foods and not too much time. It took around 45 minutes to make, and around 20 minutes of it just to prepare everything nicely.


500g Chicken breast – Chopped into chunks
400g Tomatoes chopped into chunks
6 mixed Peppers (I used red & yellow)
250g Mushrooms
1 large onion
2 large leaks
1 pack of Minced Garlic
Around 10 to 12 leaves of mint
Fresh Garlic
6cm x 2cm x 2cm ish Fresh ginger sliced into fine strips around 2cm long
Red wine
chinese white wine, soy sauce, lime juice

The Method I used

Chop vegitables into small slices/chunks (around same size)
Heat some oil in wok/pan to medium heat
Add Onion, and chopped mint to pan and brown, add garlic and about half the ginger
Leave for about 10 seconds and add chicken.
Splash in some soy sauce, and chinese wine
Cover and allow to steam chicken in mixture for a few minutes

Ginger Chicken garlic combo

In a seperate pan
– Heat a little oil, and add some garlic
– Brown leaks and mushrooms

Pour pan into main pan.

Seperate pan
– Add peppers to seperate pan (no extra oil)
– Stir fry turning reguarly
– Add 5 splashes of Lime Juice
– Continue to stir until peppers are slightly brown

Chop tomatoes and add to main pan
Stir and leave uncovered for a few minutes

Pour seperate pan into main pan
Add remainder of ginger
Add around 50ml of red wine
Cover and simmer
Add chosen seasoning to taste
Stir reguarly & then Serve

I served with noodles, its tasty and so much left. Shame no one is around to help me through it. 🙁

Itching, addicted to chocolate n stuff

I’ve been feeling REALLY itchy all over since about 3pm yesterday – its difficult not to scratch but I can’t as last time, my nails went through the skin – the itching continued but hurt aswell…..

Now I see a prickly rash over my arms – actually one of many wierd things happening to me recently.

Nothing new taken – just happens sometimes for a few days – think its something in the air – like a hayfever reaction then it stops again for no reason – had that one before

I had a realisation of addiction to chocolate… I could feel myself eating chocolate, and more just eating it with no real effect or enjoyment of taste and then saw my self as thou I was above looking down at me while at the same time being the me, so kinda like an astral projection above watching things happen then suddenly pulling myself together.

There is also the realisation of things around me more – as thou time slows and you can notice things around that usually you’d pass and not notice… Its wierd and yet really kewl at the same time. I think its like dream logic time, where you could have slept for 20 minutes but have memories of hours passing

No Dairy, That can’t be good!

Over the past few weeks I’ve not been too well. One thing that was pointed out to me was that I may be lactose intollerant… This worried me a lot – I love having milk in many things. I never realised how much I enjoyed milk/dairy stuff in things or how many different things dairy is actually in.

I’ve always had a low tollerance for chesse, and that probably helped with the idea going into my head. I don’t now think I am that as it seems that actually drinking/eating dairy seems to relieve this issues.

I told a few friends and one in particular, gave me a load of good advice on how to cope with it that I would like to share as you could also find it useful.

Some Good Advice

Hanging around in shops reading labels and a LOT of just cooking from scratch.

If you can eat soya, then there are loads of dairy alternatives open to you that I can’t have. Much easier for you to locate safe chocolate too!

Most large supermarkets have a special diets section, have a look, avoid the gluten free baked goods, they are horrible!

This is the butter they get: http://www.puredairyfree.co.uk/ they have it in big tescos and sainsburys.

Biscuits – cheap bourbons, party rings and rich tea biscuits tend to be dairy free.

There is a dairy free ice cream, sold at most large supermarkets, some even have multiple flavours! http://www.swedishglace.com/

This brand: http://www.alprosoya.co.uk/ gets sold in lots of supermarkets, they do nice flavoured soyashakes and mousses and stuff.

I like this because it’s dairy and soy free: http://www2.oatly.com/ I get their stuff from Waitrose.

Pizzas: you could try non-dairy cheese, but it’s a bit weird. They get non-dairy pizza bases, put the tomato puree base on as usual, and load up the veg and bake, cheese free! It isn’t the same.


Be careful with pasta sauces, crisps and pre-packed meats, these can all have unexpected dairy. Cereal and cereal bars often contain milk 🙁

List of dairy things in ingredients:

  • Lactose
  • Caesin
  • Whey powder
  • Milk
  • Cream
  • Butter
  • Yoghurt

Useful Links from this post


I read about these a while back and got some in. They are meant to be good for giving energy, and high in anti-oxidents and high in vitamins. They taste like raisens mixed with cranberry, and look like a bright red dried raison.

When I first tried them I didn’t really like them but then mixed them in smoothies and they added a different flavour. Recently I started trying them on their own and really like them and often have them as a snack food now – they are very low in fat and the wierd taste is nice but something to get used too.

I don’t know if I believe the idea that they are excellent for you and althou many supermarkets are now stocking them I believe that IF they were always such an excellent source for all these vitamins etc they would have been shipped many years ago like bananas, apples and oranges.

All in all, I quite like them. They taste even odder if soaked in water for 20 minutes – they become kinda oval shaped and apparently are good in curries – i’ve not tried it – I didn’t like them absorbed in water. Ever thought of putting raisons in water… before writting this I had not… maybe something to try – to see what happens.

Vegi Soup of sorts

With the stock from yesterdays Chicken thing I’ve made some soup – Enough for a few portions.


4 x Carrotts
1 x Parsnip
1 x Sweede
2 x Potatoes
2 x Leaks
1 x Chopped Chilli

Boiled everything in the stock from yesterdays Chicken thing and a little extra hot water for about an hour. Smushed (cut, mixed and mulched) the ingredients into an orange pulp. Lowered the heat and stired for about 5 minutes.

Served and packaged some for later. I made some thing similar to this at christmas time but just used Hot water instead of stock as there was a vegitarian eating with us.