Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Homemade Nandos & A Girly Night In

Okay. So Mr Wise has abandoned me this weekend, he has gone to a gig in Sheffield and will be staying overnight (it's a birthday treat from his mates) so what better than to have a girl's night with my lovely sisters??
Now the first thing that was on my mind (and always on my mind) was food. What do I make? Do we order a take-away and just be semi-happy with it? Or do I cook? Or do we go out? Now me and my sisters have a love for a bit of the peri peri chicken(piri piri if you don't like it spelt the other way)and with the nearest Nandos being in Bury and my need for the comfort of pj's I decided I'd have a pop at making my own.
Firstly I made the marinade for the chicken, you need;
  • Handful of chillis, chopped
  • Red bell pepper, chopped
  • Spoonful of smoked paprika (I used hot because I like it a i bit spicier)
  • 2-3 of cloves of garlic
  • Juice of one lemon
  • Glug of olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
Once everything is chopped give it a whizz in a food processor or pop it in a bowl and use a handheld food whizzer(yes this is what I call mine.....)
Once that is done bring your chicken to the party. I bought chicken legs with the thigh still on it as I find these piece of the chicken are the most tender and are great for holding strong flavouring. But you can choose whatever piece suits you, you can even section a whole chicken if your heart desires....... I however....couldn't be bothered hacking at a chicken..... and that's the honest truth.
So you need to slash the skin on your chicken pieces so the lovely spices can really get in there and massage your chicken with the marinade. Work that tension in the thigh, leave your chicken relaxed and zen-like in the fridge for a few hours (or even better overnight) before you chuck him in the sauna.... oven at 200c for 40-50 minutes.
Towards the end of the cooking time I put the oven on full whack to get some cripsy, chargrilled knarly bits on the chicken - SUPER!
With our home-made Nandos we had creamy mash, garlic bread and corn on the cob.
Our dessert of the night was Chocolate Coconut Pie with vanilla cream. I found the recipe right here on Glipho by the lovely The Goldlen Cookbook
Our cocktail of the night was a Hawaiian Sea Breeze; Mix vodka with cranberry juice & pineapple juice. Serve with ice and a wedge of lime - delicious!
Game of the night was UNO; I am hated by most of my friends and family by my ability to win at every single game. I'm just lucky!!!

Best moment of the night was spending time with my awesome sisters!!!

Watched Evil Dead..... Now I Can't Sleep

Worse mistake I've made? Going to watch a scary film late at night and then hoping to get to sleep after it. My mind is buzzing with the over stimlation of nerves.
Now I rreeeallllly wasn't interested in going watching the remake of a cult classic (many of you know how I feel about Carrie) but the advert kinda got me intrigued, yes I admit I was hooked in by an advert, the shame.
It wasn't going to be an exact replica, which I'm quite glad about as in my eyes no one could ever play Ash other than the wonder-chin Bruce Campbell, but there are elegant nods to the original as well as some humour laced terror moments that made the original so iconic. (Original film fans look out for Ash's 1973 Oldsmobile Delta 88)
There is also some logic throughout the film, as we all know from the reveal-horror "Cabin in the Woods"most horrors start with the location; some remote cabin in the middle of god-damn no-where with seemingly no reason to be there at all. Let me put it this way, if my friends asked if I wanted to go to a cabin in the middle of the woods with no-one else around and it looked as creepy and horrid as they always do.... well I'm afraid I'd have to slap them fucking silly.
Evil Dead however gives us a reason to be there; one of the characters is trying to kick a drug habit and is attempting to go cold turkey, using the cabin's remote location as a reason not to be able to just walk down the street and score. It also keeps the characters in the location as they all vow to help the drug-kicking addict get through the ordeal no matter how weird they get... or possessed.... or how many threats on their lives she makes......
Yeah I don't think I'm a good friend. I would have totally left ages ago.....

The only thing that bugged me was at times the dialogue was exceedingly over dramatic and at other times stupidly long (I say this because I was talking to myself "WHAT are you DOING?? That thing is gonna come and get you by the time you've finished your big ass speech about nothing"
EDIT: I have aso realised that the creepy "song" that is sung in the trailer by the main deadite character did not appear in the movie. I am a bit disappointed with this as I absolutely HATE it when adverts show things that don't happen in the film, BUT I am rather glad as I would possibly be humming/singing it for days creeping myself and Louis out.

I have to say the special effects and the makeup was absolutely astounding. I was so impressed with the outcome of the deadite versions of the characters that I don't think I could put a picture up on Glipho as it would freak me out looking at it for too long. Please see the wonderful selection on google- just don't stare too long, it gets creepy.

Jane Levy (actress from Suburgatory) performs with perfection in this film, I'm rather glad she replaced Lily Collins as she is not only believable, she's damn well scary as hell!

All in all I really enjoyed the remake which came as a nice surprise, it has classy homages to the 1981 version without being overly hammy. A brilliant scare, good to get the blood pumping. The original will forever be in my heart though.

Oh and friends if any of you do manage to take me to a cabin in the woods and start reading latin from a book which clearly warns you not to..... I'm killing you first

Chocolate Happiness (and a dash of peanut butter)

As a lady I do like a nibble of a chocolately delight. It's a massive stereotype that only us women are chocolate fiends, I myself believed this little myth until I met Louis. 

Louis is a chocolate MONSTER. Louis craves chocolate more than a hormonal women who has had a bad day. At least once a week I hear from him "I want.... CHOCOLATE" and my friends that may be hard for a 22 year old manly man to admit.

So it was absolutely perfect that my Mother-In-Law (to be)mentioned that there was chocolate festival in Ramsbottom. Excellent! The weather was absolutely shockingly freezing but it didn't discourage us.
We were... well... like kids in a candy shop.. I mean come on.... It's CHOCOLATE. Not just any chocolate. SPECIALITY CHOCOLATE.

After going around nibbling to our hearts content I bought some absolutely delectable peanut butter chocolate.
I mean COME ON. What else was a self confessed peanut butter addict to buy? I couldn't help it. I needed a fix, don't look at me like that. It was delicious and I regret NOTHING. I thoroughly loved the creamy chocolatey taste and the  salty sweet hit of peanut butter that seemed to last an age in your mouth. Heaven on earth!
I was really impressed with the presentation of some of the stalls - it was quite ingenious and I would possibly go as far as to say I would borrow that idea for presenting some of my own wares the next fair I participate in.
I mean how cute are these? Cupcakes in flower pots and presented in a little miniature greenhouse?? My heart cried out!
One of the absolute highlights was discovering Pure Origin Chocolate handcrafted chocolate bars that are flavoured by nothing more that the single origin cacao. It's like wine tasting but with chocolate (and a bit more delicious)
The lovely lady at the stall let us try the whole range starting at the 40% Venezuela chocolate (tasted like hazelnut) to the 85% Columbia chocolate (tasted like cherries). We ended up purchasing the 70% Columbia chocolate - it didn't leave your mouth dry like alot of dark chocolate but it also tasted quite fresh and fruity, I could swear I tasted mango.
The flavour comes directly from the cacao and it's origin - how beautiful is that?

No Drama xxx

Chilli Cheese Dogs With Love

Soooooo yesterday Mr Wise and I celebrated our four year anniversary!!
For our anniversaries we don't go crazy and buy each other mountains of crap, because I coudl buy Mr Wise mountains of crap every day of the year not just this one day.
Anyhoo, our tradition is that I will make Louis whatever tea his little heart desires. It's usually steak of some variety, or risotto but this year the mister was craving something a little different;
These were absolutely gorgeous!!
I have always been a bit funny with hot dogs ever since I watched a programme as to how they were made (mechanically re-claimed chicken??? NO THANK YOU!)
So when we spotted these in the Kosher section of our local supermarket, we were very happy
Here's how I made them;
  • 500g lean beef mince
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 diced onion
  • 1 tin of tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika (hot)
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 stock cube(beef)
  • 1 tin of kidney beans
  • salt and pepper for seasoning
  • 4 hot dogs
  • 4 hot dog buns, split
  • grated cheddar cheese, to garnish
1. In a large pan, cook beef, onions and garlic over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain. Stir in the tomatoes, puree, smoked paprika, chili powder, cumin, coriander, stock cube, kidney beans and salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, add a touch of water if needed. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes. Keep hot until serving.
2.  Grill or broil hot dogs until heated through. Place on buns; top with chili. Sprinkle cheese if desired.
I grilled the hot dogs on our griddle pan and I was so glad I did so. The slight char flavour that was given to the hot dogs was impeccable.
There was nothing but sounds of delight coming from Louis, so I knew I definitely nailed the anniversary dinner. We will be in Europe for our honeymoon next year on our anniversary- I wonder what we will be eating then??
Happy Anniversary darling, here's to four more years
No Drama, lots of love xxx

Craving Chinese Food


The cries of a 23 year old wanting a chinese takeaway....
It was cheat day, the day where you can treat yourself, but the mister was not budging.
"You can cheat, but you have to make it yourself, that way you know what is in it"
BUT IT WON'T TASTE THE SAME!!! Is this guy for real?? He's seriously lost the plot, he's gone loopy, Judge throw the bloody book at him, get him committed, he's mental.
Commense Sam huddled over her iPhone looking on the good food website for something inspiring to eat whilst not really caring too much about calories. I wanted crispy, crunchy, sweet, sour and rice... I came across a Crispy Chilli Beef recipe I did amend it slightly because alot of people complained that the sauce was far too vinegary.
350g thin-cut minute steak , very thinly sliced into strips
3 tbsp cornflour
2 tsp Chinese five-spice powder
100ml vegetable oil
1 red pepper , thinly sliced
1 red chilli , thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves , crushed
thumb-sized piece ginger , cut into matchsticks
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar or white wine vinegar
1 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp sweet chilli sauce
2 tbsp tomato ketchup
1. Put the beef in a bowl and toss in the cornflour and five-spice. Heat the oil in a wok or large frying pan until hot, then add the beef and fry until golden and crisp. Scoop out the beef and drain on kitchen paper. Pour away all but 1 tbsp oil.
2. Add the pepper, half the chilli, garlic and ginger to the pan. Stir-fry for 3 mins to soften, but don't let the garlic and ginger burn. Mix the vinegar, soy, chilli sauce and ketchup in a jug with 2 tbsp water, then pour over the veg. Bubble for 2 mins, then add the beef back to the pan and toss well to coat. Serve the beef on noodles with prawn crackers, if you like, scattered with the remaining chilli.
I served my chilli beef with white rice and it was bloody delicious! Better than the takeaway version.


No Drama xxx