lactose free loves: pea and bean dip

I’ve been trying out some new recipes with all the free time I seem to have on my hands at the minute, and this one is one I’m really enjoying. It’s quick and easy to make, super healthy, and tastes really good! It is also suitable for freezing so I made a big batch and put little pots of it in the freezer ready for lunch at work, or when I’m fancying some!

Let me know what you think!

Ingredients –

1 handful of podded garden peas

1 handful of edamame beans (could also use broad beans)

1 small handful of basil leaves

1 small handful of mint leaves

1 large handful of Parmesan (to serve)

2 glugs of extra virgin olive oil

one lemon

salt and pepper

 

Method:

1. In a pestle and mortar (or a food processor if you have one) smash up a few mint and basil leaves with your peas and beans until they look like mushy peas. It’s better to start with a couple of each leaves and then add to your own taste.

2. If you aren’t freezing the dip, add some of the Parmesan to the mix. If you are going to be freezing some of the dip, keep the Parmesan for after.

3. Loosen the mixture with a couple of glugs of oil, and balance out the flavours with the lemon juice, salt and pepper.

4. Taste the dip and see if you need any more basil/mint.

5. Sprinkle a few bits of Parmesan on top of the dip to your own taste. You can either spread it on crostini/sourdough or use as a dip with crudites/pitta/breadsticks.

 

 

Super quick, super easy, super tasty!

Let me know what you think!

love sophie

the blog turns one

It’s our birthday *does happy dance* and officially one year since write me wild began… where did that year go?!

It’s been a weird one, full of finishing off third year, starting a Masters, and handing in manuscripts, along with some other bits of busyness in between, but I’ve enjoyed sharing my blog with you all and hope to have more time to blog this year.

I’ve continued my monthly soundtrack series, my lactose free loves recipes, and my book club, all of which will be staying, and I also have some more super exciting things coming that you can look out for…

More recently I’ve even added a tab for my artwork, for those of you who don’t have Instagram, and tried to keep on top of my ‘a letter from’ series, which relies on me actually leaving the writing desk!

I hope you’ve all enjoyed reading my posts, and although I haven’t updated Instagram as much as I’ve blogged, I hope you’ve still had a mooch when you got chance.

If there’s anything you’ve particularly enjoyed, or something you think I could do more of, let me know! I want the blog to be a space of interest, and something you want to read.

Thank you for sticking with me.

love sophie

lactose free loves: easy peasy pizza

I’m a Taurus, which apparently means I’m more than likely to become hangry if I’m left without food long enough. I’m not often like this, but when I am all I want is food, and quickly.

With the cold nights drawing in, I’ve also been craving some really hot food to keep me cosy. My easy peasy pizza recipe is perfect for a quick lunch, or a dinner. It can even be paired with my sweet potato wedges (coming soon…) for a real treat.

All you need is a tortilla wrap, some pesto, and any veg you can get your hands on! Simples!

I was very excited to discover that ASDA now stock a lactose free mozzarella which I would 100% recommend as it tastes/melts exactly the same as the good stuff.

So here’s the simple recipe, which can easily be adapted to suit the contents of your fridge, or to use up the leftovers:

(The recipe is based on one person/pizza)

Ingredients:

1 tortilla wrap (the multi-seeded ones are fab!)

3 tablespoons of sundried tomato pesto (can be exchanged for green pesto/tomato puree)

2 handfuls of spinach

3 mushrooms

1/2 red pepper

handful of plum tomatoes, halved

four olives, halved

1 ball of lactose free mozzarella

 

Method:

1.Heat the oven up to 190 degrees, and prep a baking tray. If you’ve got a pizza baking tray, fab, if not you can just use a normal one, or a bit of tinfoil.

2. Put the wrap on the baking tray, and dollop on the pesto, or alternative, spreading it around evenly so the wrap is covered.

3. Wash the spinach leaves and spread them around on top, covering the pesto.

4. Chop the mushrooms, tomatoes, olives, and pepper. Spread these all out on top, making sure the pizza is even (it’ll cook quicker). You can also add tuna/cooked meats to the pizza, but I made mine vegetarian.

5. Slice the mozzarella length ways, and arrange on top of the vegetables.

6. Put in the oven for 10-15 minutes, until the edges of the wrap are crisp, and the mozzarella and veg are cooked.

Voila! So simple, so quick, so yummy!

It’s especially good seen as most pizza dough takes an age to make, and this one is so much healthier. If you’re having friends over, why not buy mini wraps and make a selection of different pizzas to share? Or each put toppings on your own wrap? This recipe is so adaptable it can suit anyone.

Let me know how you make yours!

love sophie

lactose free loves: chickpea and sweetcorn burgers

I always find it really difficult to find quick and easy recipes you can make for tea without either having the most random ingredients pre-stocked in your cupboard, or taking a shopping list longer than your arm to the supermarket.

I have finally found a simple, quick recipe for vegan burgers which relies mainly on a couple of tins and spices I usually have in the cupboard anyway.

Here it is…

 

Ingredients –

1 400g tin of chickpeas (drained)

1 can of sweetcorn (large)

3 tbsp flour, and some for the surface when forming the burgers

1/2 tsp paprika

1/2 tsp ground coriander

1/2 tsp ground cumin

1 lemon

Optional to serve – 

ciabatta burger buns

salad leaves

tomatoes and gherkins (sliced)

 

Recipe – 

1. Drain the chickpeas and sweetcorn and pop them into a food processor. Whizz it up until it’s combined slightly.

2. Add in the flour and spices, as well as the zest and juice of the lemon. Whizz it up again so it’s all mixed together. It doesn’t have to be completely smooth – it’s good to have some texture.

3. On a floured surface, tip the mix out and divide into four burgers of equal size. It’s a good idea (if you have the time) to pop them in the fridge to firm up before frying so they stay together.

4. Fry them in a bit of oil on a medium heat until they’re golden brown, flipping them half way through.

5. Prep the bread/salad if you’re having it. Serve with any sauces you fancy. They go great with sweet potato fries!

Enjoy!

love sophie

lactose free loves: honey and poppy seed carrot

One of my least favourite vegetables (cooked) is carrot. It’s always been that way, so I’ve tried to find a way to make them taste more appeasing. This recipe makes a lovely wintry salad, on a cold day, and can be added to lots of things to make a lovely meal.

I’ve got a slight sweet tooth, so I found adding honey really made a difference!

Here’s the recipe – let me know if you like it! This was based on a portion for two.

 

Ingredients – 

2 carrots

2 tsp honey (add to taste)

small handful of poppy seeds

 

Method – 

1. Grate the carrots either in a food processor or by hand. Drain any juice that has collected.

2. Fry the carrots in a pan on a low heat for a few minutes.

3. Add in the poppy seeds and the honey. Cook for a further few minutes.

And that’s it! Super duper easy, and still veg (albeit covered in sugar). You can reduce the amount of honey you use, or increase the amount of carrots to make it healthier.

I hope you enjoy!

love sophie

lactose free loves: vegan burgers

I was sous chef for Chris at our post-Christmas family get together in December (I chopped tomatoes and buttered the bread) and he made the easiest (and tastiest) burgers in the world. It’s a really great and filling recipe for anyone who is vegetarian or anyone trying out veganuary. It’s also a cheap meal so good for students (it’s made up from easy kitchen staples too so no doubt you have some of the ingredients in the cupboard already so don’t need to venture to the shops.

I couldn’t quite remember the recipe so I’ve given it a go from memory. And it worked!

So this is what you need:

Ingredients:

2 chillies

1 onion

1 tin of chickpeas (drained)

half a punnet of mushrooms

salt and pepper

Optional to serve:

4 bread buns

salad leaves

gherkins and tomatoes (sliced)

 

method:

1.Slice the mushrooms and onion. Fry the onion on a medium heat until it’s soft. Add the mushroom slices and fry until they’re soft too. Put the oven on to 180 degrees.

2. Chop the chillies (you can use as little/many as you’d like) and add them to the pan.

3. Open the chickpeas and drain them, before putting them in a bowl. With a fork, mash the chickpeas until they’re all squashed. Add them to the pan and stir into the mushroom, onion and chilli, adding salt/pepper to taste.

4. Once it’s all mixed together, take off the heat and leave to cool. In this time, slice the tomatoes and gherkin (optional) and add any sauces to the bread buns.

5. Once the mix has cooled, ball the mixture up with your hands and place on a oiled baking tray. Pat them down into burger shapes. Once you’ve used up all the mixture, put them in the oven for 15 minutes (or until cooked).

6. place onto the bun and top with salad, tomatoes and gherkin. And enjoy!

 

I don’t think mine were as good as Chris’ (I could have cooked them in the oven for longer but I was starving so indulged too soon…) but the recipe was super quick and easy and I was able to do some work whilst they were cooking in the oven. Win win.

They’re so easy to make and require minimal effort (which is great for a busy day). You can alter the mix if you don’t like chillies, or add different sides too. I think they’d be lovely with sweet potato fries and homemade guacamole. And you can ditch the bread bun if you’re not keen. Make them your own.

Let me know what you think!

love sophie

lactose free loves: mince spies 

The most frustrating thing I find at Christmas time (as well as other times throughout the year) is the lack of free from options for all the lovely treats. So much so that my mum actually mentioned it to the Manager in M&S when she couldn’t find a single cake in the shop that was free from dairy.

She and I both bake at home, and know how easy it is to swap some things around to make it lactose free. So why is it so difficult for M&S (who you’d think would be up on this stuff) to stock a single cake?

I really dislike food shopping at the best of times; I hate trawling through aisles of food that I know would make me really sick. I usually tend not to do it, and if I do I’ll just run around quickly for the basics which I know I need.

Going down festive aisles full of lovely treats and food which I would have once been able to eat just makes me so sad. (Seeing my mum put it in the trolley for the others makes it even worse!)

So, post-frustration, I came home and found myself in the kitchen, adamant I was going to make something I could actually eat.

So I made some mince spies (as we call them in our house.) The lactose free recipe is below for anyone else who struggles at Christmas.

(And M&S, if you’re reading this, it’s piss easy!)

Ingredients:

pastry:

4oz (100g) flour (and a little bit for rolling)

20z (50g) lactose free butter

a pinch of salt

3 table spoons of water

 

filling:

mince meat (I used 75g however this depends on how big you make your pies)

one shot of rum (for extra flavour, am I right?)

 

method:

1. Preheat the oven to 185 degrees. Rub together the flour and butter until small breadcrumbs are made. (If you have a food processor like I do, you can bung it all in there and it will do the hard bits for you!) Pop a hole in the middle of the crumbs and add the water a little bit at a time until the mixture forms a dough.

2. Roll out the dough on a floured surface (mine was roughly 5mm thick) and use cutters (or a knife and an imagination) to cut out twelve circles. Pop these into a bun tin. Then with the remaining pastry, cut out smaller circles (I did stars) for the lids.

3. Put the mince meat into a bowl and add the rum. Mix together and then add one teaspoon to each pastry circle. Top the filling with the pastry lid.

4. Cook them in the oven (at 185 degrees) for 22 minutes (or until lightly golden.)

5. Coat in a dusting of icing sugar to make them look nice, and enjoy!

love sophie

 

 

lactose free loves: gingerbread Christmas trees

Just call me Nigella, or Mary Berry, seen as it’s baking, because my gingerbread trees are golden! (not literally – I could only find light muscovado sugar in the cupboard.)

And they were so easy to make (even one-handed!)

A great craft for all ages. They’d be particularly good to make as a gift for family members (a good bit of paper and a string ribbon would do wonders.) and for bigger kids like me who just like baking (and eating.)

A very simple, easy to follow recipe, that makes the most beautiful little star trees.

Just marvellous!

(Adult supervision may be necessary on some steps, especially the icing where there is potential to get slightly carried away. My kitchen ended up covered in a beautiful dusting of snow.)

So… without further ado, the recipe:

Ingredients:

125g butter (I used a dairy free alternative)

100g dark muscovado sugar

4 tbsp golden syrup

325g plain flour (plus extra for rolling)

1 tsp bicarbonate of soda

1tsp ground ginger

1tsp ground cinnamon

To decorate:

Icing sugar (I spilt most of mine on the worktop)

You will need a set of three different sized cutters, plus a small circular cutter (or a knife and artistic flare.)

Method:

Step 1:

Preheat the oven to 170 degrees, gas mark 3. Although my recipe told me to line two large baking trays with parchment, I’d say you might need a couple more or to do two trays at a time.

In a saucepan, melt together the butter, sugar and golden syrup on a low heat, stirring occasionally. Once melted, remove from the heat.

Step 2:

In a bowl, sieve the flour, bicarb and spices and give a little stir. Then pour in the melted mixture a bit at a time, stirring until a firm dough is formed. (I accidentally translated 325g into 9oz instead of 13 so this took a lot longer than it should have for me. For those using oz, it’s 25g to 1oz.

Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and have a roll. Careful not to get below about 5mm. I did and those ones caught the heat on the edges.

Step 3:

Stamp out 5 of each star size, and 10 of the little circles (these are to help the tree be a little bit taller.)

Place them on the baking sheets (make sure to leave lots of gaps between them so they don’t get stuck together.)

Step 4:

Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until the biscuits are golden brown. If you use light muscovado sugar, not dark, be careful not to overcook them. The biscuits will be a lighter colour, so won’t necessarily be golden.

Once cooked, transfer to a wire cooling rack. Meanwhile, mix together some icing (I did 1 cup of icing sugar to 1 tsp of water and added more water if it was required.)

Step 5:

To assemble each tree, use the icing to stick one of the little round biscuits to the centre of the five largest stars.

Continue to build the layers. (I used one of each size but you could double it up to have a larger tree.)

Save the smallest stars for the top. Decorate this with icing/piping/silver balls/anything that takes your fancy, and then stick it on top!

Brush the tips of the stars with icing sugar (or if you’re me – the more the merrier!)

Leave them to dry before having a munch!

Happy Baking!

loce sophur

 

 

 

 

 

 

lactose free loves: teriyaki salmon

I’ve been lactose intolerant since returning from my travels in Africa back in September 2015. As I was already a pescetarian, I found it quite hard transitioning as the free from food on offer was rarely vegetarian. With most dishes containing meat, I was left to muddle through and make do, making it up as I went along with recipes from the vegan world of Instagram and the wonderful Deliciously Ella. I’ve added my own selections to the mix too, substituting classic recipes with ingredients which make it ‘Sophie safe’ to eat.

But boy do I miss it. Substitutes just aren’t the same.

I was never really a milk lover before, and I would rarely eat very creamy things as they used to make me feel sick anyway. But since discovering my bodies hatred towards lactose, I’ve also realised just how much it’s in, and how annoying it is for me.

This is why I’ve started my lactose free loves series. A selection of products/recipes/companies that I have found/made on my journey through lactose free life. And a lot of them I’ve come to absolutely love, often preferring them to what I used to eat.

So here is my Teriyaki Salmon For Two (minus the photogenic sesame seeds because I couldn’t reach them with only one hand.)

So…

What you will need? 

  • 2 salmon fillets
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 tsp og ground ginger
  • 3 tbsp of soy sauce
  • 11/2 tbsp of golden syrup
  • 2 leeks
  • 50g frozen peas
  • 2 portions of rice noodles/egg noodles
  • sesame seeds (optional)

 

Method

Preheat the oven to 190 degrees (If you’re like me and have the option of the little oven or the big oven, you only need the little side.)

Cut your garlic into small chunks (they don’t have to be minute, you just need it for the flavour.) In a deep plate or bowl, mix together your garlic, soy sauce, golden syrup and ginger. This is going to be your marinade.

Pop your salmon fillets into the marinade and leave to rest in the fridge for about 20 minutes.

Whilst it’s in the fridge, wash, peel and chop the leek. Put it in a pan with a bit of oil on a low heat, stirring occasionally. You don’t want them to brown, you just want to gently soften them.

Pop the salmon fillets into an ovenproof dish and pour over the remaining marinade. Put them in the oven for 10 minutes. Keep stirring the leek.

When the ten minutes is up, get the salmon out and spoon the marinade over the fillets. Pop the peas in the pan with the leek and turn the heat up slightly, stirring more frequently. Pop the noodles into a pan of boiling water to soften

Put the salmon back in the oven for 4 more minutes (or until the salmon turns light pink).

When the noodles are cooked, mix them in with the leek and peas before serving.

Once everything is ready, serve the noodles, leek and peas onto a plate with the salmon on top, drizzling the marinade sauce over to taste. If you’d like, sprinkle some sesame seeds to serve.

Et voila!

Bon Appétit

loce sophur