Store Cupboard Hummus

Although my tin collection is going down I still have plenty of tins on long term lease in the cupboards. 2 were banished today.

STORE CUPBOARD HUMMUS

INGREDIENTS

1 X 300g tin of Broad Beans

1 x 400g tin of Chickpeas

Garlic

Lemon Juice

Tahini Paste

Paprika

Olive Oil

METHOD

There’s not much to it. Empty the tinned beans and rinse them. Boil them for about 10 minutes to soften them up. Pour into a food processor (if you have a small one like me you may need to do it in batches) and add lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, tahini paste and paprika to taste.

I didn’t really keep track but I estimate I used roughly 6 tsp of tahini, 5 tbsp of olive oil, 3 tbsp of lemon juice and lots of paprika and garlic as you can never have too much.

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Sneaky post because I hope no one realises I didn’t blog on the 21st

Yes I didn’t blog once on Friday 21st April, which is the first time all year.

A bit of a disappointment but it was going to happen eventually.

Anywho…

I was at a gig, in the past, on the 21st and I ran into an old friend from one of my many previous employments and we had a good chat on the basis that we hadn’t seen each other for a good couple of years.

The trouble is when I see someone I know in a pub or at a gig or in the street I go out of my way to not say hi to them, even though I want to.

The reason is I am genuinely perplexed as to why people like me, and what I have to offer them, so I mainly avoid talking to people because I’m convinced my wishing them well will somehow ruin their day and it will be really awkward and weird.

When really the only awkward and weird thing in the situation is me.

I have a bit of a problem with talking to people (as you all know) so I avoid getting into conversations which could be stilted, or forced, or hard. I find it difficult to keep a conversation going with people I only half know as I go into MEGA PANIC STATIONS that they will think I’m boring, or weird.

I would have called the evening a success as I had a good conversation with someone I shared a similar experience with. But later in a different pub I saw someone I knew at University at the bar and I didn’t say hello to them. That may have been due to the crowd of people they were with and that would have exasperated my anxiety, but let’s just leave it as I am improving.

 

Spicy Salmon Stew

This is my attempt at a salmon piperade. Since I have never had a piperade I can’t say whether mine matches up, but if you want something warm and spicy then you can’t go wrong with this.

INGREDIENTS (serves 2 reasonably)

1 X 400g tin of chopped tomatoes

Onion (I used frozen)

Peppers (I used frozen)

Olive Oil

Tomato Puree

Dried chilli flakes (you can use a fresh chilli)

Balsamic Vinegar

Garlic (I used lazy garlic as the boy hates garlic so I never buy fresh as it would just go to waste)

1 – 2 Salmon fillets (I used a frozen one, I think 2 would have been better)

METHOD

Pop some olive oil in a nice big pan. Gently cook the onion and peppers for about five minutes. Add the chopped tomatoes, tomato puree, chilli, garlic and balsamic vinegar to taste.

Don’t do what I did which was think ‘oh these dried chilli flakes are quite old so I better add lots to get a good taste from them’. That would be foolish.

Add the salmon fillet and cook together until the salmon fillet begins to flake apart and is fully cooked.

Serve with some rice.

Everything was beautiful and nothing hurt

You won’t be surprised to hear that nothing went wrong on my first day in my new job.

Although it was overwhelming in the early part of the day by the end of it I had a sense of calm that whilst I had a long way to go, I was going to learn how to do it.

Everyone was lovely and it seems very relaxed but it doesn’t seem like I will be bored.

The trouble is, I distrust good things happening to me. As much as I want good things to come my way when they do I wonder what the catch is. Or how long will it be till my life implodes again.

And the truth is I feel like suffering should be my default state because if I am honest deep down it is all I feel I deserve.

But that is a stupid way to feel and I am growing tired of treating myself so badly.

Imagine what my life would be like if instead of feeding myself negative thoughts I replaced them with a bit of kindness?

Do you know what the boy’s catch phrase is?

‘I’m the best!’

Do you know what he says when I ask him who he loves most?

‘Me’

He has a T-Shirt his friend made for him which has his face on and ‘I’m kind of a big deal’ written on it.

Imagine what I could have achieved with just a smidge of that confidence.

The trouble is I don’t want to look ‘arrogant’, as if saying ‘I’m probably not the worse person in the world’ will make people dislike me for being stuck up.

But I am prepared to lose a few followers or likes just to say this, as I feel it is important to my mental development.

I am Flo, and I’m brilliant.

I’ve seen pigeons with more confidence than me

Most people when they get a job in their dream field (which they thought was out of reach to them) would be overjoyed.

About 24 hours after I found out I got the job in my dream area, I was looking for reasons to diminish the achievement.

I began telling myself that I only got it because I could start instantly. I only got it because I knew someone in the department. I only got it because they were desperate and I ‘would do’.

I didn’t tell myself I got it because I aced the interview, because I did the spreadsheet task in half the allotted time or because I had done my research on the company and I could relate my answers to the company’s future vision, values and goals.

Why am I so quick to be my worst enemy?

I am so afraid of being verbally assaulted by other people for any little thing I do wrong, but that has never happened. What has happened is I tell myself on a daily basis that I am scum, that I am worthless, that I am fat, ugly, terrible, hated, unloved and pathetic.

I need to give that side of me a good ass kicking.

Am I the disgusting person I say I am? I guess not, but brains are mercurial things.

Brains like truth. If I feed into my brain the statement ‘Flo is Rubbish’ then my brain will look for evidence of that. Due to my low opinion of myself I can find evidence in any moment of my life, from genuine ‘I was a twat’ moments to something as innocuous as that time I tripped over a paving slab.

I was recently ill and had to cancel some self employed work with my friend. I was unbelievably apologetic and my friend who is wise and calm just told me to get some rest and as they could sense my anxiety, they told me that it can be exhausting punishing yourself.

It really is.

Yet I do it on a daily basis.

I feel ok to a certain degree, and I can truthfully say I haven’t been plagued by my former friend depression for probably the longest stretch of time in my life since it first appeared.

BUT…..

My anxiety seems to be getting worse. Previously I was taking my newest medication just on days when I had to socially interact with people, but now I have been experiencing more moments of anxiety and have been taking it to try and make that go away.

I start my new job tomorrow. I will end on a positive and say that one thing I have learnt in life is things have a funny way of working themselves out. Eventually.

Every little thing is going to be alright.

 

How to use up leftover Easter goodies #3 Hot Cross Bun Bread and Butter pudding

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Another fact which I have learnt from the new ITV show ‘Save Money Good Food’ (new episode tonight! Can’t wait!) is that Hot Cross Buns can cost as little as 8p each in the shops.

With Easter having just passed and such cheap prices on the Easter staple of hot cross buns you may have a few more than you can stomach to look at in your kitchen.

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Since most, if not all, bread and butter pudding recipes include some form of dried fruit this couldn’t be easier as the dried fruit and spices are already in the hot cross buns!

You can go whatever way you like with this. About 5 hot cross buns will tightly fill a small loaf tin, just cut up and arrange, try not to leave any gaps. You can add butter and jam. You could add more dried fruit. I wish I had remembered to do what I wanted which was add banana and chocolate, oh well.

Either make a custard from scratch and flavour it how you like, I recently had a nice orange, vanilla and fennel custard, or do what I did and root round your cupboard and banish 300ml of ready made custard into the pudding (I jazzed mine up with vanilla bean paste, honey and golden syrup).

If you make your own custard don’t forget to do something with the egg whites. Either season and freeze them or make a nice meringue.

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Cover the hot cross bun loaf tin with custard and bake. I did mine on gas mark 5/6 for about 25 minutes.

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Eat.

That will be the last of my Easter leftover suggestions as I am all cooked out. If you have any suggestions or have done something interesting with your booty then do let me know 🙂

Mixed Berry Rolls

I was inspired to make these after seeing a recipe in the January 2017 issue of the free Tesco magazine.

My recipe is basically a slight variation on the one that featured in the magazine, so not a true inspired original recipe. The Tesco recipe is definitely fancier, mine just used what I had.

INGREDIENTS

500g White Bread Flour (I bet wholemeal would work just as well)

350g Frozen berries

325ml water

Cinnamon

Mixed Spice

A bit of yoghurt (optional, a nice way to use it up)

A bit of icing sugar (optional, a nice way to use it up)

METHOD

Weigh out the 500g bread flour and mix with the water then mix with your hands to form a dough. When it no longer feels sticky leave it for 5 minutes.

Pour a little bit of yoghurt and icing sugar over the berries to make them a little less tart (this step is optional)

Roll out the dough into a nice rectangle shape. Sprinkle with cinnamon and mixed spice.

Cover the dough with the berry mixture and spread it out until even. Then roll the dough over the berries from the longest side and keep rolling till it is a nice long roll.

Cut chunks off and place them flat on a baking tray. You should have between 10-12 but it depends how big you have cut them.

Bake in the oven on gas mark 7 for about 30 minutes (your oven might be better than mine).