Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Dairy Free No Muu sent me to chocolate Heaven. They can send you there, too!

Years ago, you could get some dairy free chocolates. They were by-and-large, inedible. 

But thanks to a couple and their children, all that has changed, because now if you need to buy chocolates for anyone who needs a dairy free diet, you can feed them No Muu!

Anna and Euan realised that their children had certain intolerances, one being to dairy milk.

Rather than just shrugging and saying: "Oh, well, there's nothing we can do!" they actually decided that there was something they could do. They could develop their own dairy-free chocolates and they decided to name the brand No Muu! (See  what  Anna and Euan did, there? No milk = No Muu? Well, it tickled me, any way!)

But their chocolates are more than just dairy free, they're also gluten free, too! 

But what about the tradition taste of this type of product? You do not need to worry, as they taste absolutely delicious.

But there's more to chocolate than just the taste. There's what those in the know in the world of chocolate call "mouthfeel" which is to say, somewhat unsurprisingly, how the chocolate feels whilst you are chewing it. 

Anna and Euan have got the taste and the mouthfeel absolutely perfect.

They produce a wide range of equally delicious products from a white chocolate Easter egg to white chocolate and raspberry bunnies, to milk chocolate bunnies and chocolate orange bunnies.

The white chocolate bunnies were exquisite, like white chocolate used to taste when I was a child and the orange chocolate equals or, actually, betters more established brands of orange chocolate. That'll be something to do with the organic and fair trade ethos of Anna and Euan and their company, No Muu, I expect!

I'd have loved to have tried the Easter Egg, but my wife Anni assures me that it was delicious! And as her dairy and gluten intolerances were not triggered in even the slightest way, I'd have to say that this makes the whole No Muu experience very worthwhile indeed!

By the way, the chocolates from No Muu taste absolutely wonderful, so you don't have to have food intolerances to enjoy these delicious tasty treats!

How can you purchase your very own supply of No Muu Chocolates?  

Please visit https://www.facebook.com/uknomuu to learn more.

And when you do, please mention That's Food and Drink!

Saturday, 21 March 2015

Oh, Hoppy Days! Real ale fans in for a Wetherspoon ale treat!

Beer drinkers can enjoy a wide range of real ales from around the UK and the rest of the world at their nearest Wetherspoon pub!

Each of the beers (some specially produced for the festival) are brewed using only with British-grown hop varieties; an amazing total of 24 different varieties of hops are featured amongst the festival beers, including established varieties (Fuggles and Goldings) and newer varieties (Boadicea and Jester).

The ale festival runs through to 29 March with all festival ales at a price tag of an amazingly modest price of £2.10 a pint.

The overseas beers on offer have been sourced from brewers in Brazil, Canada, South Africa, New Zealand, USA, Spain, Ireland and Australia.

Each of the overseas brewers have brewed their individual beer at a carefully selected UK brewery.

These beers will complement 40 beers from across the UK also being served in the pub during the festival.

The overseas beers are; Spider Bite (Devils Backbone Brewing Company, USA), Shipwreck IPA (Lighthouse Brewing Company, Canada), Wee Heavy (Bodebrown Brewery, Brazil), Durban Pale Ale (Shongweni Brewery, South Africa), Hightail Ale (Mountain Goat Beer, Australia), California Breakfast Ale (Golden Road Brewing, USA), 0′ Dwyer’s Irish Stout (Dungarvan Brewing Company, Ireland), JCIPA (Townshend Brewery, New Zealand), English IPA (Cerveceria Fort Brewery, Spain) and ESA (Barley Brown’s Beer, USA).

The UK beers include; Play it Again Sam (Phoenix), Monty Python’s Holy Grail (Black Sheep), Puffin Ale (Orkney), Lazy Dog (Wolf), Pocket Full of Rye (Brains), Mojo (Robinsons), New Moon (Hanlons) and New Dawn Ale (Daleside).

Customers will be able to sample any three of the real ales before they make their choice, plus they can have three ales in special third-of-a-pint glasses for the price of a pint.

Tasting notes for all of the beers will be available.

Wetherspoon have also added Mexican Monday to their growing specials menu. So you can enjoy real ale made with British hops and eat Mexican foods. A match made in Heaven!

Where is your nearest Wetherspoon pub? Find out at http://www.jdwetherspoon.co.uk/.

Teatulia. They have real tea for you to enjoy

Teatulia provide tea lovers with real tea. That's those of you who are not merely tea drinkers, but genuine tea lovers.

Aand you know how different you are from those people who just slurp any old tea down or really only need a cup of warm, brownish liquid to dunk their biscuits in!

Teatulia is for you. Teatulia provide organic teas that are sourced from single tea gardens.

They want to do all the right things. Yes, they want to provide you with tea of the highest possible quality, with tea that you will enjoy drinking, a noble aim in the view of your author, but more than that they want to make certain that they do the right thing by not only the people who tend the land and grow the tea crops, but also the very land the tea bushes grow on, themselves.

The Teatulia tea garden is established on good, virgin soil and they make certain that only non-harmful, natural farming methods are employed within their tea gardens.

They are justifiably proud that theirs is the first Bangladesh tea garden that is USDA-certified as organic. As far as they are aware, they're the only tea growers who have introduced this approach to tea cultivation.

The teas and herbal infusions they produce are direct from their tea garden to you. Nobody steps in the way to demand a cut from the profits, no third-party blenders and the subsequent risk of contamination with lesser types of tea, no languishing around in long-term warehouses, losing a little bit more flavour, every day.

Just the highest quality tea brought to your teapot as quickly as they can.

There's Tealulia Black Tea, Earl of Bengal, Tulsi Infusion Tea, Teatulia Green Tea, Lemongrass Herbal Infusion,

Taste them. Tastes different, don't they? Better isn't it? Now, that's how good tea should taste!

To learn more please visit www.teatulia.com.

Sunday, 15 March 2015

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Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Anni's Rum And Raisin Cake

This recipe has been specially created by Anni for the Aldi Best Budget Bake

Ingredients 175g of margarine
175 of dark sugar
3 eggs, well beaten
225g of plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 teaspoons mixed spice
850g raisins
125ml of rum

Cream the margarine and sugar together in a mixing bowl, 'til the mixture is creamy and fluffy.
Next, add the beaten egg mixture, a little at a time, beating well between each addition.
In another bowl sift together the dry ingredients. Then carefully fold this mixture into the egg mixture, with a metal spoon or a spatula.
Mix in the raisins and the rum (we used the remains of a bottle of Lamb's Spiced Rum, left over from Christmas, though some of Aldi's delicious  Old Hopking Dark Rum is equally suitable)
Mix well, 'til it is soft and drops easily from the spoon.
Meanwhile, you will have preheated your oven to 160c and prepared a baking tin by greasig it and lining it with baking paper.
Pour the mixture into the cake tin and, using a palette knife, smooth the top.
Cook in the middle of the oven for about 120 minutes, 'til the cake is firm in the middle.
Tests can be undertaken by a skewer into the centre of the cake. When the skewer's clean, the baking is done!
Remove from the oven and let it cool in the tin for an hour or so.
Now, prick the surface all over and add more rum to help ensure the cake is nicely moist.
Take the cake from the oven and, if you wish, wrap in greaseproof paper and store it in an airtight container for up to two days. If people will leave it alone for that long! Because Anni's Rum and Raisin Cake is very moreish, indeed!

From 15 March Aldi is the place to buy your cooking equpiment

Aldi Home Baking – on sale 15th March

 Classic Food Mixer (£34.99)
Take the effort out of baking with Aldi’s Classic Food Mixer. Featuring a 4-litre auto rotating bowl and turbo function, this high speed gadget comes in 3 chic colours and serves as a multipurpose device for all of your mixing needs.  

Two speed settings and a pulse function, this high spec gadget also includes a 1.5 litre blender jar and a 2.8 litre chopping bowl, helping you save valuable time in the kitchen.

Easter Tea Towels (£2.99)
Dry your dishes in style with these excellent quality tea towels, made in four elegant designs to add a touch of spring to any kitchen.

Digital Kitchen Scales (£6.99)
Get your measurements precise with the help of these kitchen scales; whether it’s solids or liquids, Aldi’s quality range ensures accuracy, so you can be sure to achieve the perfect bake.

Kids’ Silicone Bakewear (£3.49)
Keep the little ones amused for less during their Easter holidays with Aldi’s fantastic value silicone bakewear; available in 8 different shapes and colours, for endless baking fun.

Easter Hen Nest (£9.99)
Keep your eggs pride of place with this cute ceramic dish; available in both plain and patterned designs, it will also make the perfect Easter gift.

 Aldi’s quality array of culinary kit has all you need for whipping up a storm, but don’t delay, as once they’re gone, they’re gone!

Aldi’s Best Budget Bake!

That's Food and Drink is proud to be participating in the Aldi Best Budget Bake.

So far we (well, my wife, Anni, mainly!) have produced two bake items, the first some wonderful traditional Hot Cross Buns and Anni's Spiced Rum and Raisin Cake, a recipe that Anni has specially created for the Aldi Challenge.

Hot Cross Buns

15g yeast, dried
300ml warm milk
450g strong white flour
5ml salt
10ml mixed spice
2.5ml grated nutmeg
50g caster sugar
75g of margarine
75g raisins 
25g mixed peel
1 egg, beaten
50g plain flour
For the glaze, 60ml milk and water, 45ml caster sugar.

Sprinkle dried yeast into milk, leave in warm place for quarter of an hour, 'til frothy.
Put strong flour, salt, spice, sugar.
Rub in 50g butter, then stir in the currants and peel. Make a central well and stir in the eff and yeast liquid. Beat together until a soft dough is formed.
Turn out onto a lightly floured board knead for some ten minutes, or until it is smooth and elastic and has lost its stickiness. 
Put into a clean bowl, cover with a clean cloth (an Aldi tea-towel is ideal) and leave it to rise in a warm place 'til doubled in size, approximately an hour.
Turn  the dough out onto the floured surface and knead for about 2 to 3 minutes.
Divide the dough into approximately 12 pieces and shape accordingly, into round bun shapes.
Place therm on greased baking sheets, cover and leave them -in a warm place- for about half an hour, 'til they are doubled in size.
 While they are doing their thing, make the pastry for the crosses. Put the plain flour into a bowl and rub in the remaining butter 'til the mixture reminds you of fine breadcrumbs. Stir in just enough water to bind the mixture together, then lightly knead.
Roll out the pastry nice and thin on the floured surface, and cut into thin strips approximately 9cm long.
Dampen the pastry strips, lay two stips on each bun in the form of a cross.
Bake at 190c for 15 to 20 minutes, or 'til they become golden brown in colour.
For the glaze, take the milk, water and sugar and heat, whilst stirring. Brush onto the hot cross buns, then wire rack them to allow them too cool down.

And, yes, they were as delicious as they looked!

Ideal split in two and eaten with Aldi butter!

Next up there will be a recipe for Spiced Rum and Raisin  Cake!

Monday, 9 March 2015

How old is your oldest spice? Steenbergs wants to know!

Our friends at Steenbergs have launched a brand new competition to find the oldest spice in our store cupboards.  Running for the month of March, the oldest jar of spice will win the lucky owner £50 worth of fragrant, aromatic spices from Steenbergs, the artisan spice expert.

March traditionally the month when we do our spring cleaning.

So, where better to begin than with your pantry or store cupboard?

What Steenbergs wants to learn is who owns the oldest spice in the UK?

Locate that elderly jar of allspice or that vintage vanilla, photograph it for posterity and then email or post it on social media to be in with a chance of winning a whole new range of spices (#oldestspice).

“Here at Steenbergs we pack our herbs and spices into glass jars with tight fitting lids to keep the flavour in and maximise the shelf life,” says Axel Steenberg, who founded Steenbergs with his wife Sophie in 2003.  “Storing the jars in a cupboard away from light and heat is the perfect environment but we know they can sometimes get forgotten!”

“We recommend an optimal shelf life of between 2 - 3 years for herbs and spices, so that the delicate flavours don't have a chance to fade,” says Sophie.  “If you’re unsure what to do with any spice, before it gathers dust - glean some inspiration from our recipe library which is full of tasty ideas.” www.steenbergs.co.uk/recipes

Already proving popular on social media, Steenbergs is hoping to make this store cupboard clearout an annual event every March, giving everyone a chance to revitalise their spice collection.  So dust off that dill seed and get posting!