Chicken and Chorizo Bake - Midweek Meal -

Opportunity knocks: A couple of years ago, I published a Chicken and Chorizo in Tomato Sauce recipe. It was delicious but as often at Pebble Soup HQ no two meals are the same or you would get bored. As a consequence, very few dishes join the classics and sadly they disappear from my mind and down a long list of recipes
Foreward to this month while staying in Grasmere,  I picked up the co-op magazine, old habits die hard. On the reader recipe page, there it was Chicken and Chorizo Bake by Dan Cullen-Shute from South London. By now, I had forgotten all about my own attempt but when I brought it to the table, He who has a little Ganesha brain reminded me that we had something similar before.

Still doesn't take away the fact that this is an easy recipe, perfect for a Midweek Meal.

Chicken and Chorizo Bake
based on a coop magazine reader's recipe
serves 2

2 Red onions, roughly chopped
5 cloves garlic crushed
100g Chorizo ring
2 potatoes roughly chopped
2/4 chicken tights depending on the size
olive oil
fresh thyme if you happen to have
Salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 220C
Mix all the ingredients except for the oil in a bowl
Add the seasoning, oil, thyme (if using) and toss
Transfer to a baking tray
Bake for 45 minutes, baste halfway through

I'm sharing with #cookblogshare 
Hijacked By Twins

Good Life Cottages in the Lake District

It's almost signed and sealed, I got a book deal. A guidebook which is not a guidebook. The start of a new weird and wonderful adventure that took me and him to Grasmere, to test the water, not literally.

I provided the Good Life Cottages Company with my requirements and let the team choose for me the perfect accommodation for my first of many visits. On the basis that I needed a place to work, we had been given the keys to an apartment in the centre of Grasmere.

The Spinners is located on the top floor of an old coach house, above a cute restaurant and next to a chocolate shop. The master bedroom faces Grasmere primary school, I find that there is nothing more reassuring than the soundtrack of daily life while I work away and kids playing is in my top ten. Indeed, the Good Life Cottage team had found just the right place.

Good life cottages Grasmere

The Spinners is very large so much so that I'd started to unpack in one bedroom when I realised that he was unpacking in another. A master bedroom which I had not spotted in spite of the fact that it is vast with feature beams and tasteful decor.

What I liked the most, besides the fact that the kitchen was extremely well equipped, is the interior styling. The property is owned by a couple, one of which is an artist and there are examples of her work throughout the property.   
Good life cottages The Spinners

On the other hand, he was delighted with the CD player/Bluetooth speaker in the lounge. quick manipulation et voila we had the choice of all is soundtracks and playlists.

Good life cottages Dale End

After three days, reluctantly though filled with the expectation of the new, we moved a couple of miles away, in a much more rural part, along the lakeshore.
 I had requested a view after all.
Good life cottages Dale end view of Grasmere
No disappointment here: breakfast was taken gazing at the mist hovering over Grasmere Water, one of the smallest lakes in the area. A stunning view indeed.

Good life cottages Dale end kitchen
Shower Room - View 1.jpgDouble Bed.jpg
Not much of an opportunity to breakfast on the terrace as the fickle weather was up to no good but the two loungers by the large windows, doors made up for it.

If you are looking for a romantic getaway, or a place for a solo traveller this is a good place to come to. It is one big L shaped room, perfectly maintained and excellent to get away from it all.

No doubt that in the future, if all goes well, I'll report on other types of accommodation in this stunning area which has recently been awarded Unesco World Heritage status however they will need a lot to beat The Good Life Cottages Company's efficiency whose motto is "We know what makes a great Holiday" and so they do.

Disclaimer: My thanks to Good Life "part of the Original Cottages family" Cottages for allowing us to stay in both of the places reviewed. You can follow them on Twitter @goodlifelakes and on Facebook: @goodlifelakedisctrictcottages.

If you'd like to watch reviews of the cottages managed by this friendly company head to the Quirky Traveller

November 17 Inheritance Recipes

Inheritance Recipes started as a challenge but to allow bloggers from around the world to participate it's now a link-up. IR is about dishes bloggers cherish. Recipes which have been passed down by a family member, a friend, through an ancestral culture and dishes which you would like to bestow to future generations. Before starting, do take a look at the latest roundup collated by Coffee 'n Vanilla

How does the Inheritance Recipes work?
Each month, food bloggers will add their favourite recipe(s)celebrating a dish which they love and connects them to their root or which they would like to share with the next generation. As Inheritance Recipes is opened to all, regardless of location, each month, we'll end up with the most diverse round-up of all roundups.

Social Media
We will also add your recipe to the Inheritance Recipes Pinterest board and include your blog’s handle in our Inheritance Recipes list on Twitter (don’t forget to subscribe to them both), we will share your recipe via social media including Instagram and a round-up at the end of the month.


  1. Please, link back to challenge page on both: Pebble Soup and Coffee & Vanilla blog.
  2. If possible, display one of the IR badges (available below) on your recipe post.
  3. Add your recipe via linky 
  4. Up to 2 recipes accepted per blogger.
  5. Feel free to link up to past posts but please, update them with links to the challenge pages to qualify.
  6. Closing date is the 30th of the month.
  7. Entries from bloggers all around the World are accepted.

Please note that entries that fail to follow “how to enter” instructions won’t be approved.
If you use Twitter to promote your recipe, please use #InheritanceRecipes, tweet it@coffeenvanilla or @solangeweb and we will re-tweet it.
When you have a spare moment visit other entries that caught your eye, comment on them and give them some social media love.

Badges are designed by Coffee and Vanilla
To use save to your area first- do not hot-link- thank you

We can’t wait to see your Inheritance Recipes!

November recipes
click on the pictures to access their blog post

Cheddar & Chorizo Muffin Made Easy with Judge Mixer

Cheddar & Chorizo Muffin
Watching the latest episode of Great British Bake Off and hearing one of the contestants exclaiming, "I can't believe I have tried to mix this by hand", the penny dropped. I couldn't believe I had been so silly to confuse a hand blender with a hand mixer.
judge mixer

A stick blender also called a magic wand, is used mostly for soups whereas a hand mixer is perfect for kneading dough, whisking meringue and cake mix. The added advantage of the Judge Twin Blade Mixer over many others is,  that, if like me you have a small kitchen, this one takes up very little space.

Judge Mixer
The Judge Hand and Stand Mixer has another huge advantage – that is the price. At under £50 (you may find it for less), it's a really good buy. It may not look as snazzy as its expensive counterparts but with a 300 Watt motor, 5 speeds and a turbo it does the job really well and takes the hard work out of mixing cakes and kneading dough.
Cheddar & Chorizo Muffin
Cheddar & Chorizo Muffin

I like the fact that it has a bowl and a stand.The stand is handy when you need to multitask, you can leave the mixer running while you carry on weighing etc. and, with an acute lack of space, the bowl has come handy for storage, the hooks and the whisks live in it, even the magic wand has now joined them!

Cheddar 'n Chorizo Muffin Recipe


  • 300g self-raising flour
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 80g butter, diced
  • 100g chorizo, diced
  • 200g mature cheddar, coarsely grated
  • 1 egg
  • 250ml milk
As with all muffin recipe, you need to combine the dry and the wet ingredients separately.

First,  preheat the oven 190C and line your tray with cases.
The etiquette has it that muffins are baked without cases as cupcakes are but blow that, it's much neater to use paper cases, it saves you scrubbing the tray.

1- In a bowl mix the flow, the paprika and rub in the butter
2- Mix the egg, milk and cheddar in the bowl with the mixer
3- and 1 to 2
4- spoon the mixture in the cases
5- bake for 20 minutes

you could replace the chorizo with ham for a breakfast bake.

This is a sponsored post. All words and opinions are my own.

**(BTW did you listen to my interview with Paul Hollywood before he became famous, if not click here)

At Pebble Soup HQ, we are partial to a muffin or two. Have a peak at a few more muffins recipes
Kiwi Muffins
Savoury Polenta Muffins
Beetroot and Chocolate Muffins
Musfins (mushroom muffins)

Quince Tatin : an Inheritance Recipe

Traditional French Recipe Quince Tatin

Cooking with quince can get a little daunting. First, you need to source the fruits. Best think outside the box. High-end supermarkets or fruits and vegs shops should carry them in the autumn but, your best bet is to befriend a person who has a quince tree in their garden. 

The Quince tree saving grace is the beauty of its blossom. I often think that people don't cut quince trees down because they make such a beautiful show in the spring, When autumn arrives, the fruits are often ignored so you'll do your new best friend a favour by offering to pick her quinces and then there is a world of lovely, quirky or traditional recipes for you to try out. Here is one I prepared earlier.

The next stage is to peel the quinces. That could be a bit of a dangerous exercise, the skin is tough and it's best done slowly with a paring knife. When all this is done, the fun starts: poach your fruits. Quince has a delicate flavour which often needs a little pick me up. Keep your spicing simple by using one of the following, maximum two: vanilla, few cinnamon sticks, allspice berries, slices of fresh ginger, 5-star anise. Place fruits and spice (if used) in a saucepan with enough liquid to cover the fruits, poach till soft. Once poached you can keep your fruits and juices in a Kilner jar.

The Tatin is made in the same way you'd make an Apple Tatin

Quince Tatin: an Inheritance Recipe

Preheat the oven to 190C / 375F
Roll out a sheet of puff pastry and cut it to the outside size of the pan you'll be using

3-4 poached quince cut in quarters
85g white or brown sugar
1 sheet of puff pastry (cut to size)
50g of unsalted butter


First make a wet caramel in a pan which will go to the oven. On medium hob heat sprinkle 85g sugar add enough water to dampen the sugar, that will not take much turn the pan frequently to stop the caramel burning.

Stir in the butter, remove from the hob, add the slices of quince in a pretty pattern (usually in circles of various sizes) place the pan in the oven for about 10 minutes.

Remove from the oven, place the puff pastry circle on the top of the fruits and bake for 40 minutes. 

Remove from the oven place a plate on the top of the pan, keep one hand on your plate and flip.

This is a bit of a labour of love and it was made for our arrival in Lyon, last week by my best friend. She also taught me how to cook when I had no idea that food existed outside tins of ravioli. Thank you my lovely, I won't name you as you know who you are but, I'll enter your recipe in the September Inheritance Recipes hosted by Coffee and Vanilla

Which Breakfast Tribe Are You?

When I first moved in with Him, there was a lot to marvel about. Inside and outside our relationship so much was new. Of course, I am not going to spill the beans, this post is about you, not me.

But can I start with the milkman experience? This is not a profession practised in France. So, collecting a bottle of milk from the doorstep was just another wonderful novelty. Our milkman, John, was friendly, he would never grump though he had to reverse all the way down our tiny little street and the year we got snowbound, we still had our milk delivered. 

Nevertheless, I was a tat surprised when he won "Milkman of the Year". Then, we moved to Greenwich, milk delivery went out of fashion and that was that. Never gave it another thought until the other day when I received a press release about Milk and More now part of the Muller group.

Where John delivered milk only with the occasional orange juice bottle. The service is now more comprehensive and the marketing department has surveyed our breakfast habits to classify the results into five tribes.

The five Breakfast Tribes and their respective foods are:
  1. Protein Packed – Eggs and traditional fry-ups
  2. The Quickie – quick-fix foods such as cereal and toast
  3. Healthy – fruit salads, juices and smoothies
  4. Long-lasting – slow release foods such as oats and porridge
5. On-the-go – bakery items, yoghurt drinks and biscuits

So, which breakfast tribe are you?

Would you like the Welsh and the residents of West London have a tendency to favour a fry-up? or like on the Isle of Wight consume a sensible energy-boosting and long lasting breakfast?

Personally, I tend to butterfly and really don't have a favourite. When I am busy I grab a breakfast on the go something that the residents of Kent and Essex tend to do whilst the title for the healthiest region of the U.K. goes to Hertfordshire.

Have you decided yet? The comments thread is open.

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post

Holy Guacamole

You'd have had to live with a 5p plastic bag over your head not to notice that the price of avocado has shot up in the past year. it's a matter of high demand and meagre harvest though a single California Hass Avocado tree can produce 500 fruits (by the way avocados are fruits not veg) this year the harvest was poor and the demand has not dropped on the contrary there has been a spike.

Once reserved for the rich since the not so rich have discovered how good and how tasty avocado is the supply is struggling. Like most people, I have a penchant for this lovely egg shaped fruit. Unlike some, who I won't name, when I mash an avocado on a toast, I do it quietly. There is no point of making a fuss about such thing but....

Since Pebble Soup won a prize for a perfect Come 'n Dine With Me menu which included Guacamole as a starter. I've meant to share the recipe for this delicious and healthy dish. Each family has its own recipe. I do mine using a food processor with the pulse button, it's chunky but the on button would get it to a smooth paste if that's your preference.

I throw in all that can be added, that way it reminds me of my travels in Mexico where we mostly lived on street food. I found a recipe which matches exactly my requirements in The Ideas Kitchen, a Panasonic Kitchen site whose ambassador is one of my favourite chefs, Tom Kitchin. Serendipity.

Mexican Guacamole Recipe

2 Avocado 
1 Lime
1 Tomatoes
1 Garlic Cloves
1/2 Red Onion 
1/2 bunch Coriander
To taste Salt
To taste Black Pepper
1/2 Green chili 
1 tbsp Olive Oil

This Mexican Guacamole will have everyone at the table scraping the bowl with their nachos! This delicious dip is perfect with nachos, dolloped atop a chili con carne, or inside yummy tacos and quesadillas!
So easy to make in the food processor! Simply blitz up a couple of ripe avocados, olive oil, red onion, garlic, tomato, lime juice, and some green chili if you like a kick! Season to taste and enjoy!

Peel and de-stone the avocados. Add to the food processor with the olive oil.
Squeeze in the juice of the lime.
Chop the tomato and add to the food processor.
Add the chopped onion, garlic and chili.
Season to taste.

For more info and disclaimer :  all words and opinions in this post are my own The post is sponsored by Panasonic. To know more about  Food Processor recipes  click on the link

Spreading the guacamole with CookBlogShare


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