More reviews on our sister blog

We also review restaurants and cafes on our Foodies By the Water blog,

Foodie blog

Many of them (the reviews) are based in Southend but we do occasionally escape. One of us has truly escaped ……….to Uganda. For a sense of food out there, why not visit

Uganda blog – food

Published in: on November 16, 2015 at 3:55 pm  Leave a Comment  

About time for an update

It`s taken me 50 years to work it out but I have a butterfly brain. Always full of ideas and best intentions to finish things off but……. well there`s just another idea that needs starting. And so I have several blogs going on. This morning I was writing on my foodies blog where I review restaurants/cafes.

Foodie blog

Later today I`ll be creating items for TWIG – a pop up emporium that is my outlet for raising some income and tries to specialise in upcycling but even that blog diverts off 🙂

TWIG blog

So this weeks or months goal will be to link the blogs together – they SHOULD support each other and not compete for my time 🙂

I wish myself good luck 🙂

Published in: on November 16, 2015 at 3:27 pm  Leave a Comment  

Thanks @Lesleywriter for info on Guess where I`m sending this from 🙂

Published in: on April 20, 2011 at 8:37 am  Leave a Comment  

Coddled Eggs

Coddled Eggs

Ever wondered what a coddled egg was, how you used the lovely Egg Coddlers that you can buy in antique shops. Coddled Eggs refers to a gently or lightly cooked egg. It links in with the old fashioned term to coddle – to treat tenderly; nurse or  tend indulgently.

 So if you want your egg tended in an indulgent way then a lovely egg coddler is for you.

 1. Boil a pan of water with enough to cover the coddler.

 2. Lightly butter the inside of the cup and break a free range egg into it.

 3. Add little more butter, salt and freshly ground pepper.

 4. Screw on lid.

 5.  Cook for 6 mins in boiling water.

 6. Lift cup from the water by metal ring

 7. Using tea towel unscrew the top.

 8. If the egg is not cooked enough, just simply replace lid and return coddler to the boiling water.

So simple, so delicious.

Published in: on April 10, 2011 at 7:55 am  Leave a Comment  

Rapeseed Oil

Two days into our new business – The Dragon`s Kitchen at Battlesbridge Antique Centre – and our best seller is Rapeseed Oil.

This is what The Telegraph said about Rapeseed Oil.

“When cold-pressed, rapeseed provides a cooking oil with a grassy, “green” taste. Thanks to some eye-catching health properties, it also makes for a fitter fry-up. Little wonder, then, that homegrown rapeseed has been dubbed “the British olive oil”.

There are various well-known converts to the rapeseed revolution. Chefs James Martin, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and Tristan Welch are devotees of its gentle, almost dusty flavours. It is the oil of choice in the kitchens of The Dorchester, Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons and the House of Lords. But where rapeseed oil was once only available in delis and Fortnum & Mason, it is now widely stocked in supermarkets.

Apart from its local provenance, rapeseed oil’s big selling point, say converts, is its health-giving properties. As with olive oil, rapeseed oil contains Omegas 3, 6 and 9, essential fatty acids known to reduce cholesterol and maintain heart health, joint mobility and brain function. It is also a rich, natural source of vitamin E. High in mono-unsaturated fats, it is one of the few unblended oils that can be heated to deep-frying temperature without its antioxidants, character, colour and flavour spoiling. In short, it is one of best “good” oils.”

Published in: on April 4, 2011 at 6:27 am  Leave a Comment  


For those of us that started cooking within the last 30 years or so, garlic is likely to have always been part of our useful ingredients.

I still remember the first time I made my own garlic bread – well I didn`t make the bread but you know what I mean. A mix of crushed garlic cloves, butter and lemon rind. A wonderful smell as it cooked in the oven with a lovely taste to match.

My list of dishes may have increased since then but garlic bread is still a favourite with young and old alike.

I am a great lover of garlic, there`s not many dishes that I don`t sneak a garlic clove or two into, including mashed potatoes. Just pop a clove in while the potatoes are cooking then by the time you come to mash them, the clove will be soft and will give a subtle flavour of garlic to the potatoes.

I still remember my disbelief though when seeing a recipe for chicken and 30 cloves of garlic. Yes that`s thirty cloves. It does work because garlic is more ‘potent’ when it is chopped or crushed. So by cooking the 30 cloves whole the dish is not over powered by the garlic.

My most recent passion is for smoked garlic. I love the taste but the smell is as important. A well smoked bulb leaves a lovely smell in the kitchen. At the moment I have a basket in one of my cupboards which although empty lends a wonderful aroma to the room every time I open the door.

If you ever get the opportunity to visit the Isle of Wight, a trip to the Garlic Farm is strongly recommended. It offers a chance to find out more about garlic, buy it (very) fresh, taste some of the mayonnaises and mustards made at the Farm and enjoy the Café there. A great morning out.

Published in: on April 3, 2011 at 7:34 am  Leave a Comment  


One of those weekends where I managed to catch two foodie favourites on TV. Come Dine With Me and Hairy Bikers – very different programmes especially this weekend where the contestants on Come Dine with Me were disappointing (but hey I wouldn`t put myself through it) compared to the inspirational skill of the Hairy Bikers and their guest chef and the market gardener who had so much knowledge and enthusiasm. But what linked them was beetroot. I love beetroot – but realise now how little I know about it`s uses and the different varieties. Did you know there is a golden beetroot? So this week’s aim is to learn more about beetroot and hopefully use them in at least one meal. Plus potato fondants – I can probably cook potatoes in 10 or 15 different ways and my mash is superb – but I`ve never cooked potato fondants – so today is the day 🙂

Published in: on March 20, 2011 at 8:10 am  Leave a Comment  

Proud to support National Winners of F1 in Schools – Dynamic

The Dragons Kitchen Team took a day off yesterday to support two of the team in the F1 on Schools Competition. Anna and Tim are both members of Dynamic a team from St John Payne in Chelmsford. It was a fantastic day and superb result – their team were crowned National Champions. Wow were we proud.

So to support them all and celebrate their success we will be introducing two new features. One will be a whole series of articles, reviews and recipes looking at Malaysian food so that when the team head off to the World Championships in September in Malaysia they can have some background knowledge. Secondly we will be creating recipes, advice and features on how a team of 5 teenagers eat healthily while studying for their A/S levels, working part-time and developing their F1 in Schools project to make sure they come home as World Champions.

For more information on F1 in Schools visit

For more information on Dynamic – National Champions of F1 in Schools visit

Published in: on March 13, 2011 at 11:15 am  Leave a Comment  

Slow Cookers

Thank you to whoever came up with the idea of a slow cooker. On a day like today – cold, rain, sleet – is there anything better than walking in to the house after a day at work and being able to smell a delicious casserole already cooked?

A great way to cook cheaper pieces of meat. I also find you can get away with putting more vegetables in the stew or casserole to make things go that bit further.

And always there is a delicious gravy – just remember to make sure there is plenty of bread in the house to mop it up. Or if you want to be really good – put on the breadmaker when you put on the slow cooker – save money and create taste.

Published in: on March 1, 2011 at 4:15 pm  Leave a Comment  

mash competition

I have always known I make the best mash 🙂 honest – my kids say so – it must be true.

But I hate to admit Tesco`s mash with horseradish comes a close second. Or maybe it was the way I cooked the venison with a mix of onion gravy with leftover cranberry sauce and pak choi.

Whatever  – lovely meal and it`s nearly the weekend.

Published in: on February 24, 2011 at 9:01 pm  Leave a Comment