Stem Ginger the Homemade Way


I recently bought a big bag of ginger from my local Supermarket that had been reduced to 41p with the idea of making my own stem ginger in syrup or crystallised stem ginger. This is such an easy thing to make with only two additional ingredients: water & sugar, as well as a bit of time. You too can make your own, and here’s how:

You’ll need:


Caster sugar


Heavy bottomed saucepan


1. Peel your ginger.  The best way to do this in with the bowl of a teaspoon, rather than a knife as then it only takes off the outer paper and doesn’t cut into and waste your ginger flesh.


2. Cut the peeled ginger into evenly sized slices, approximately 1cm thick.

3. Weigh the peeled ginger, then weigh out an identical weight of caster sugar, and set your sugar aside for use later.

4. Place the ginger pieces into your heavy bottomed saucepan.  My Le Creuset pans are perfect for this.

5. Cover with cold water until the ginger is just submerged and bring to the boil.


6. Add the lid to the pan and reduce the heat to a simmer.

7. Simmer for an hour, or until your ginger is tender when tested with the tip of a knife. If your water is getting low, then top it up with a bit of boiling water from the kettle.

8. When your ginger is tender, pour in your sugar and bring to the boil.



9. Continue to boil gently until the sugar water mix has thickened and has formed a golden coloured syrup.


10. Transfer your ginger and syrup to a sterilised jar and seal.


11. Use the ginger as you would the commercially bought jars, keeping the ginger submerged under the syrup.

Cooking with Stoves and Cyrus Todiwala


I watched a fantastic demo at the Summer 2015 BBC Good Food Show by Cyrus Todiwala who cooked his Chicken Tikka Kala Miri Masala on the Stoves UK stand. Stoves UK were the official appliance supplier to the BBC Good Food Show this year and hosted their own Live Cook Stage, where you could see the likes of Cyrus Todiwala, Brian Turner, Stacie Stewart and Hemsley & Hemsley demonstrate their recipes.

I love that Cyrus is an advocate of British food and champions his ingredients, were possible, from the British shores. He explained and demonstrated how to cook this traditional of dishes to the audience along with his recipe for Burmese Glass Noodle Salad and Chazaan.  As Stoves proudly produce their Range cookers, built in ovens and hobs as well as freestanding cookers in Merseyside in the UK (see here for further information), this was the perfect partnership.

In association with Stoves UK, I was asked to recreate Cyrus’ recipe at home, which I did.  I can honestly say that these two recipes partner perfectly (with more than a little heat!)  I found Cyrus’ recipes incredibly easy to follow and thoroughly recommend you to have a go yourself.

Prepare your ingredients:


Simply marinade your chicken the Tikka seasoning and set aside in the fridge for the flavours to infuse.


Lay on a tray and cook in the oven.



Prepare and cook the Burmese Glass Noodle Salad, then add the chicken tikka pieces on top.  I served mine with some soured cream to take the heat down a little bit and with a wedge of lime to squeeze over the top.


Simply Delicious!  That you Cyrus, and thank you Stoves UK. xx

Stoves UK sent me a voucher with which to purchase the ingredients for these recipes.  The opinion stated above in respect of the ease of following the recipe and the taste of the dishes is personal and was not influenced by the provision of the voucher.

FireFly BBQ Foods


One of the products I was given to try from an exhibitor at the BBC Good Food Show came from FireFly BBQ in the form of a Memphis Pig Rub and a bottle of their Memphis Red BBQ Sauce.


Seeing as I hadn’t prepared anything for dinner the other night, but had a couple of chicken breasts in the fridge that needed using up, I decided that I’d improvise and give my chicken a quick rub instead!


Whilst I left my chicken to take on the flavours of the rub, I sliced an onion and a red pepper, then prepared my rice ready to cook.  As I put on the water to boil for my rice, I sautéed off my chicken, onion & peppers in the wok, then as the rice went in to boil, I added the bottle of Red BBQ sauce to the wok & cooked it down to become a delicious sticky sauce.



Sprinkled with a few chopped spring onions, this became a quick, tasty and delicious dinner.

I was given the Memphis Pig Rub and the Memphis Red BBQ sauce to try by Firefly BBQ.  I was under no obligation to provide a review, positive or otherwise.

BBC Good Food Show Summer 2015


I love going to the BBC Good Food Shows, and as a BBC Good Food Show Blogger, I get to participate in some parts of the show that members of the public aren’t able to.  Normally I go and meet the rest of the Blogger Team on a Thursday, but this year for personal reasons, I was unable to attend that day.  So on the Saturday, my 14 year old daughter and myself made the journey to Birmingham, picked up our press passes and entered the show.  This is the first time that Freya has joined me at the shows, and despite not speaking to me in the car for the hour’s journey because I made her get up so early on a Saturday so she was tired, by the time we got to the hustle and bustle of the show she had woken up, was ready for a cup of tea and an early morning cake and in we went!


The show was sponsored again by Lexus this year and featured a whole host of chefs and experts to entertain the crowds, such as Tom Kerridge, James Martin, Mary Berry, Michel Roux Jr, Antonio Carluccio, Gennaro Contaldo, John Torode and Michael Caines. Along with this kitchen full of culinary geniuses, you can also find John Whaite and Jo Wheatley; both former winners of The Great British Bake Off series.

Along with the Supertheatre, you can also watch chefs create their culinary marvels on the Summer Kitchen and the Stoves Live Cook Stages. New to 2015 was the Interview Stage, where you could catch all your favourite chefs and experts face a Q&A session.

Also featured at the show are the Ludlow Producer Market, where you can find amazing produced from Shropshire, and the Producers Bursary Award Winners.  The Bursary Award Winners this year were: Blackberry Cottage (producers of cakes with ‘secret’ ingredients), Chazwinkles (Chutneys) and Gregor’s Umami Dressings.  Alongside you could find the BBC Good Food Champions who are selected bunch of approved producers who exhibit their outstanding food and drinks.

We chose to go and see Michel Roux Jr in the supertheatre after lunch and thoroughly enjoyed the insight into how he wooed his wife with food as well as watching him create two amazing dishes of lobster in garlic butter followed by Fraises Sarah Bernhardt.  One of the perks of my ‘job’ as a blogger grants me the occasional privilege.  The highlight of the day was taking Freya  backstage to meet Michel Roux Jr himself and having our photograph taken with him.


Thanks to my lovely friend Tony ‘Mr Cameraman’ who arranged this for me; I don’t think I’ve seen my daughter so thrilled at meeting someone her whole life. Like me she’s an avid fan of talented chefs and has watched Michel on TV many, many times


From there we went to watch Cyrus Todiwala cook on the Stoves Live Cook Show, where he cooked up and incredible smelling Chicken tikka kala miri masala with a Burmese glass noodle salad & chazaan.  Stoves make British products for British cooks, all of which are manufactured in the UK.  Cyrus is a fan of British produce and is a firm advocate of cooking with local ingredients. Don’t you just love Cyrus’ expression here?


The other perk of my ‘job’ is being treated to samples and goodies from amazing manufacturers such as Farrington’s Mellow Yellow Cold Pressed Rapeseed Oil (grown in Northamptonshire; my home county!), Blackberry Cottage cakes, the Black Liquorice Company, Joe Delucci gelato, Demijohn spirits and vinegars (Angus is a truly lovely gentleman who spoiled my daughter), Bluebird Tea Company, Spice n Tice, Cake Aspirations (fabulous fudge), Firefly BBQ (Americal style BBQ rubs and sauces), Koh-kae flavoured peanuts, Mrs Crumbles Gluten Free, Easiyo and Dhaniya (also locally produced in Milton Keynes).  Thank you to all named above for the generous samples and your kindness; it is truly appreciated!



If you’ve never been to the BBC Good Food Show, then I would urge you to pay a visit.  There is so much amazing produce, friendly advice and fun to be had.  Not to mention the food and drink sampling as you walk round!  I hope to see you there in Birmingham between 26th and 29th November.