Recipe Update…Chicken Korma with a KICK!!

Hola Happy Friday!!!

I’ve updated my Korma recipe, with a few more photos, check it out….

Whilst growing up eating and enjoying curries were a must with my family, forget your Sunday roast dinners; instead we would have a curry (much to my dismay when I was younger…’why can’t we have Sunday roast like everyone else’ I can hear myself moan to my mum) But with our Indian heritage curries and spice would be the food of choice on Sundays or family get together’s.

Usually these curries would be spicy and I always loved spice and chilli’s but as I have become older I seem to have lost my tolerance to really HOT dishes. These days when ordering an Indian take away I would steer more towards the Pasanda’s or Korma’s.

This Korma however still has a kick, it’s creamy and spicy but not hot. Just enough spice so you can taste the flavours but it is definitely not mild!! Continue reading

Tis Nispero time….


Here in Spain the Nispero’s are now ready,  Nispero’s are a yellow fruit which I would say are similar to apricots.  They have a stone in the centre which actually smells like almonds.  They are not as sweet as apricots but are very juicy, they do not however last long when picked so you need to eat them straight away or preserve them.

Today I am having a go at making a spicy chutney with them, but here are some recipes from last years crop…..

April 2015

Chicken Tagine with Rosemary and Nispero’s

Once again we have some Nispero’s to use up, so after racking my brain for what to do I remembered a Tagine recipe I cooked for friends a while ago which had dried apricots in, I thought I would give this a go using Nispero’s replacing the Apricots. What I love about this Tagine is that it isn’t overloaded with spices yet it still tastes delicious. Sometimes less is more!!!
Continue reading

Auntie Heather’s Mango and Chilli Chutney

Good Morning Folks,

Here is a quick little recipe addition to my YOU page…

This Chutney is one of my favourites, it’s sweet and spicy which I love. The Mangoes and the chillies are from my other Aunts land too and are delicious. The colour of this chutney is amazing, a bright yellow with red flecks, the yellow is almost luminous!

I can eat this with anything, it is a great accompaniment with an Indian curry but also great with cheese, it would work well with my chilli con carne too adding a slight sweetness on the side….

Auntie Heather has been making this chutney for a few years now and we love it, I hope you do to….

Auntie Heather’s Mango and Chilli chutney


50g red chillies de-seeded (Aunt H used a mix of birds eye and bishop crown as it was all we had, any red chillies are fine)

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1 large lemon peel only

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7 large mangoes diced

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2 cups white wine or cider vinegar

3 cups sugar granulated is fine


After you have removed the seeds from the chillies, diced the mangoes and peeled the lemon pop it all in a deep pan then pour over the sugar.
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Then the vinegar.

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Place on a high heat and bring to a boil then turn to medium and let it bubble away for around 45 minutes to 1 hour. Keep stirring the pan as it can stick, you do not want to over cook it as it will lose the amazing colour and become dark, Auntie Heather’s was done in 45 minutes. It might look runny but it thickens on standing.

Do the plate test; pop a plate in the freezer at the beginning of cooking, then after 40 minutes remove from the freezer drop a little chutney on the plate and run your finger through it, if it is thick and you can push it with your finger it is done.

Once it is done carefully remove the lemon peel and pop into sterilised jars. It will make 4-5 jam jars.

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A beautiful yellow colour, what a lovely sheen this chutney has. There you go, so simple and tasty, well done Auntie Heather ❤ ❤

Enjoy the rest of your day,

love Lulu xxxx

The Ultimate Chilli con Carne recipe with sides…..

Hola Amigos,

Hope you all had a great weekend. What a miserable day it is here in Spain, perfect though for blogging!!  I know a lot of you have had some sunshine this weekend,  it is pouring down and stormy here, but it is needed as we haven’t had rain for 2 months!!

Yesterday I made a nice comforting dinner, a Mexican feast, well Tex Mex really. I LOVE Chilli con Carne (chilli with meat), but prefer to eat it with chunks of beef rather than mince. I have made it this way for a few years but yesterday I tried cooking it a different way and I marinated the beef in a chilli paste for a few hours, and it really was good. I always add chocolate into my chilli con carne too, it just gives the dish a deep richness in taste and colour. The history of chocolate began in Mesoamerica which was a region and cultural area in the Americas, extending approximately from central Mexico to Belize.  Take a look at this link for more info;

Most of the Mexican food we all love is really Tex Mex, the sides I am making are more authentic Mexican.  Alongside the chilli, I made Guacamole, this is typically Mexican, when I traveled around Mexico we were often served a bowl of guacamole with nachos as a tapas with our beer! It was first created by the Aztecs in what is now Mexico, the name comes from Aztec dialect and translates to ‘avocado sauce’.

I also made a roasted tomato salsa this was from a recipe I had found years ago, you dry fry the ingredients in a pan, including the tomatoes, then it is all bashed up in a pestle and mortar to create a different tasting salsa, a slight smoky taste. It’s spicy so I also like to add a little bit of mango to give a little cooling sweetness.

Lastly my favourite side…refried beans ( in Spanish ‘frijoles refritos’)!! This is true Mexican and often eaten as the main dish, the word actually means ‘well fried’, it’s now known as a dip or a side dish with your chilli or in burritos. The recipe I use for this is actually a Hairy Bikers recipe, but it has to be the nicest I have eaten. There isn’t anything I could possibly change with the recipe so I don’t mess with it…… it’s simple but tastes amazing.

It is made with pinto beans, which fortunately for me are Spanish so I had no problems getting hold of them here, “Pinto” means “speckled” in Spanish, they are a very pretty looking bean….. I would however love to try this with black beans at some point, they are my favourite bean. The beans are soaked over night then boiled to be tender. You then mash them up and fry them with some of the liquid used when boiling them, to create a creamy mash, you always season these beans once cooked; salt can change the cooking time and can also toughen the beans. I would compare this cooking method to an Indian Dhal the way you boil the lentils then use the liquid to make the dish creamy.

Here it is………………………..

My Ultimate Chilli con Carne

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Marinade Ingredients

Serves 4

Time cooking 1 1/2 hours, marinade time: overnight/ 2 hours

Difficulty Easy

Marinade Ingredients:

1 kilo beef meat… brisket/braising/casserole meat…something with some fat content so it can be cooked slowly. Chopped into chunks.

2 cloves garlic grated

1 1/2 tsp sea salt

1 tbsp tomato paste

2 tsp paprika

1 tsp cayenne pepper

1 tsp mustard (I used English)

1 tbsp ground cumin

4 tbsp olive oil

1/2 tsp grated nutmeg

1/2  a cinnamon stick

1/2 tsp mixed spice (I used my Aunt homemade spice)

Fresh Thyme leaves and oregano, a handful of both (you can use dried but if you have fresh use it)

1 extra picante dried chilli depending on heat (I used 1 as they are fairly hot and I add more chilli later, you can add two here)

2 sweet and dry peppers (these add a bit of sweetness to the paste)

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2 extra picantes and the 2 sweet peppers

Sauce Ingredients:

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1 onion diced

2 celery sticks diced finely

1/2 birds eye chillies left whole and pricked with a knife ( I used 2 as I wanted this HOT)

1 garlic clove grated

1 cup red wine

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

1 tin plum tomatoes

2 tsp brown sugar

water approx 200ml

1 red pepper diced chunky

1 tin red kidney beans drained

20g dark chocolate, I used 70% cocoa


First make your marinade, now it is better to do this the day before and leave overnight, if not make sure you give yourself at least two hours for the meat to marinate.

In a pestle and mortar add in your garlic and salt.

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Bash until you create a paste.

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You can make the next part in a pestle and mortar but it will take a long time, I scraped this garlic paste into a blender and placed in all the other marinade ingredients apart from the oil.

Blitz up for a few minutes and add oil a little at a time to loosen the mix. You may not need it all, and you may need a little water if you use it all and the mix is still not smooth.

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All the marinade ingredients apart from the oil

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add in the oil a little at a time to make a smooth paste

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Deep red paste

Now coat the meat in this chilli paste, cover with cling film and pop in the fridge to marinate.

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Once marinated heat a deep pan and start to brown the beef pieces in batches, no need to add oil there should be enough in the marinade.

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Remove the meat with a slotted spoon once browned and set aside in a new bowl, keeping the marinade bowl and remaining scrapings of the chilli paste aside for later in the recipe.

In the same pan add the onions and celery, you can add a little more oil if it is sticking. Cook on a medium heat until soft.

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Chuck in the whole chillies and garlic and cook for another 2 minutes.

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Now scrape all of the remaining marinade from the bowl and add to pan.

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Add the tin tomatoes to the marinade bowl and use the liquid to scrape all the remaining chilli paste juices, mash the tomatoes up a bit too and set aside for a minute.

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Add the wine to the pan and cook for a minute to let this reduce a little. Then add in the vinegar, then the tomatoes scraping the bowl as much as you can.

Add in the sugar and stir.

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Now pop the beef back into the pan.

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Pour the water into both the tomato bowl and beef bowl to get the last remaining juices (I do not like to waste any of it 😉 ) Add this to the pan, you need the liquid to just cover the beef if this water doesn’t then add a little more.

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Taste the juice, you may not need to season it more as the marinade had salt in it. I added a little bit of cracked pepper. The colour is fairly pale at the moment and there may be a lot of liquid, don’t worry as it will reduce and become darker. Cover and turn heat to low and let this cook slowly…about 1 hour or until the beef is tender. Stir often during this time.

Once tender add the chocolate cook for 5 minutes uncovered. Stir it and you should see the colour become almost like dark chocolate.

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Now add in your peppers and kidney beans. I add the peppers at the end so they have a bite and so you can taste them. We have already flavoured the chilli with the dried sweet peppers.

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Cook this for a few more minutes uncovered then turn off and pop the lid on. Set aside until you are ready to eat this.

If you can I would make this ahead as it tastes so much better once it has sat for a few hours, or cook the day before. I left it for 1 1/2 and the meat tasted so much better for letting it rest.

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I cannot explain to you how tasty this was, you need to try it for yourself. Its hot but as I have said before this isn’t called meat with chilli is it!! Believe me its hot and spicy but tasty; the flavours and depth in the sauce is not overpowered by the heat….trust me 🙂

Ok onto the sides…..


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3 avocados

1 tomato

4 limes

1 tsp paprika

1 red chilli

approx 8-10 sliced jalapeno peppers

coriander large handful


On a chopping board place two of the avocados cut in half and sprinkle with paprika, the start chopping it together with the tomatoes and the jalapeno. Chop and mix on the board, then add the red chilli.

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Squeeze the juice of one lime on and keep chopping.

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Blitz up the other avocado up in a blender with the juice from another lime.

Get a bowl and mix the two together. Season well. Then sprinkle in lots of chopped coriander and mix.

Taste, add more lime juice if needed, I ended up using 4 as I like mine to be zingy!

The guacamole with be smooth with some little chunkier bits. It’s totally up to you how smooth you want it.

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Serve ❤

Roasted Tomato and mango Salsa

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1/2 red onion finely diced

3 tomatoes

1 red chilli

2 cloves garlic

1/2 ripe mango

1 lime

handful chopped coriander


This is so easy, get a good non-stick frying pan and dry fry the tomatoes chilli and garlic, they will all cook at different times. Once they have softened and blackened remove from the pan. Turn the tomatoes over and over to make sure it all is soft, try to get a good colour to it.

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remove the skin from the garlic and the stalk from the chilli and bash together in a pestle and mortar.

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Once the tomatoes are black and soft cut off the stalk end and bash with the pestle and mortar mixing it into the garlic/chilli paste. Keep pounding at it so it’s all broken up including the skin.

Empty into a bowl and mix with the onion.

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squeeze the juice in from the lime

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Chop the mango small and mix in then add the coriander. Mix well and taste. Season well with salt.

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And finally……

Refried Beans

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250g Pinto Beans

1 Pint water

150g smoked streaky bacon

1 onion finely diced

25g butter

2 tbsp olive oil


Soak the beans overnight in water only. If like me you forget to do this the night before there is a quick soak method….

Place the beans in a pan with ratio 1 cup beans to 2 cups water (I just made sure they were covered) Bring to a boil and boil for 2 minutes. Turn off the heat, cover and set aside for 2 hours.

Once soaked, empty the water away. Add the pint of water to the beans and bring to a boil, cook until tender. Do not add salt, we add this later.

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Heat the oil and butter in a pan and gently cook the onions until soft then add in the bacon and cook until cooked and crispy.

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Once the beans are tender, drain them but reserve the liquid DO NOT THROW THIS THICK BROWN WATER AWAY!!

Mash the beans or blitz in a blender.

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Then add them to the onion mix and fry, add some of the thick brown water you set aside until the whole dish becomes creamy. You might not need all of this reserved water. If making in advance make sure you keep some of this liquid aside as its good to pour in when re-heating the beans.

Once it has a creamy texture season well with salt and pepper to taste.

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Serve ❤ ❤

That’s it!! I served it all up with some plain steamed rice and nachos, and a little grated cheese for the top of the chilli 🙂

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Enjoy, and please let me know what you think…..

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Love Lulu xxxxxx ❤

(Printer friendly versions are in the recipe index)

Hello September!!

Hello folks,

I have been very busy over last week helping Millie Green Stylist with her wedding decorations. It has been non stop but I have tried to cook a few recipes in between the madness, below you will find a recipe for a Spicy Lamb Tagine and a seafood paella….

Firstly find some photos of Millie Green Stylists wedding set ups;

Vintage signs……

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The vintage drinks station went down a treat, a light refreshment before the ceremony. Strawberry flavoured iced water, still lemonade and cucumber & mint water served in jam jars with retro straws.

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I helped with the serving 😉


The drinks nearly all gone 🙂


One of my Aunts table plans

The venue…. Hotel Bates

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The grand stairway which the bride walks down to the ceremony…

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Ceremonial set up with chandelier and draped fabric…

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The kids station…

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I drew some personalised fairies on canvas bags for the kids to colour in

In the evening…

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part of the photo booth and guest book signing area

For more info please take a look at Millie Green on Facebook;

and on Instagram it is @milligreen_stylist see link below….

On Saturday I made a really tasty Spicy Lamb Tagine. We have lots of figs in the garden that are ready to eat and I wanted to incorporate these into a dish. Figs go really well with rosemary and cardamon so I used these ingredients to make a tagine. I do seem to use rosemary quite often when making tagines, but I just the love the flavour it gives the dish.

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fresh figs picked from the garden

Lamb was the meat of choice for this recipe; it is difficult to get hold of good Lamb here in Spain, I managed to get some lamb cutlets which I chopped into chunks leaving the bones in. This worked really well and as the pieces were small they didn’t take too much time to go tender. I would have like them to be chunkier so you can use diced lamb if you can get hold of it, or chops which are cut a little thicker.

The paste I made to marinade the lamb was inspired by chermoula. Chermoula is a marinade used in Algerian, Libyan, Moroccan and Tunisian cooking used to flavour seafood or meat dishes. I took the concept of bashing the garlic with salt and adding spices and herbs to create a marinade, but I used thyme rather than coriander as again this herb is great with figs.

As the figs are fresh these are added at the end of the cooking time as you want them to keep the shape and not dissolve. I started on the hob then transferred into an oven dish then I cooked it slowly in the oven, . You can use  a Tagine…..ours was not big enough 😉 Then it is topped off with a sprinkle of toasted almonds to give a bit of crunch and rosemary flowers for decoration and they taste amazing…yum!

I have made many Tagines but this one my Aunt has said she thinks is her favourite…have a go  and tell me what you think ❤

Check out my recipe:

Spicy Lamb Tagine with Fresh figs and Potatoes


Serves 4

Time 1- 1 1/2 hours approx depending on type of Lamb meat

Difficulty Easy


1 kilo Lamb meat


3 cloves garlic grated

1 tsp sea salt

1 red chilli

Handful fresh thyme leaves

2 tbsp olive oil

2 tsp ground cumin

1/2 tbsp tomato paste

Juice of 1 lemon


1 onion sliced

3 rosemary sprigs; 1 chopped finely

1 whole red chilli pricked with a knife

1 cinnamon stick

1 tbsp grated ginger

1tbsp runny honey

3 carrots sliced thickly

3 cardamon pods bashed

1/2 pint lamb stock

25g butter

1 tbsp olive oil

85g blanched almonds

4/5 baby potatoes or 2 medium-sized potatoes cut into wedges, skin left on.

Rosemary flowers for decoration (optional)


Chop your lamb into chunks.

Make your marinade. Put the grated garlic and salt into a pestle and mortar and bash until it creates a paste.

Then empty into a hand blender and add in the chilli, thyme leaves, cumin, oil, tomato paste, lemon juice and blitz to create a red paste. You can do this by hand with the pestle and mortar it just takes a little more effort ;-).

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Pour the marinade over the lamb and mix it well, leave for 1/2 hours, or if you have time do this the night before.

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Once marinated you can start the tagine.

Set the oven to the highest temperature.

Heat the oil and butter in a deep-frying pan and add in the lamb to brown, you can do this in batches. Try and get a good colour to the lamb.

Once you have good colour place the lamb in an oven dish retaining the oil in the pan.

Add in the sliced onion, the chopped rosemary sprig and the grated ginger. Cook until the onions are soft.

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Add in the cinnamon stick and the cardamons then stir and add the whole red chilli. Cook for another 2/3 minutes.

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Add this to the lamb. Tuck in the other two rosemary sprigs and tuck the carrots then mix up.

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Pour in the hot stock, also pour a little water into the hot frying pan to de-glaze and get all of the juices then pour this over the lamb mix.

Cover with foil and place in the hot oven.

After 20 minutes turn the heat down to 180 degrees and cook for around 45 minutes to an 1 hour minutes or until the lamb it tender.

As I used thin lamb pieces I added my potatoes after the initial first 20 minutes, if using chunkier lamb I would add it in a little later once the lamb is nearly tender.

Tuck the potatoes in making sure they’re covered with the stock. Let these cook until soft; about 25 minutes.

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Once cooked remove the foil stir well and taste as it might need more seasoning then place the figs in the dish and drizzle with the honey.

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Turn the heat of the oven back up to high. Cook for another 20 minutes uncovered.

This will cook the figs, reduce the sauce and give the lamb more colour. The honey adds that little bit of extra sweetness.

Whilst this is cooking dry fry the almonds until toasted.

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Remove the tagine from the oven place the Rosemary flowers on the top to decorate then sprinkle with the toasted almonds.

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Serve with buttery couscous.


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The flavours are so tasty, a good heat of spice and warmth then the figs bring a sweetness and freshness to the dish. The lamb melts in your mouth…..YUM!! ❤

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