Ugly Bread Bakery


No trip to the town centre with my six-year-old is complete without a trip to the Ugly Bread Bakery. A great place at the top of Hockley and now with a second venue on Market Street in Nottingham.

The interior is all exposed wood and pallets. But you can’t help but be drawn in by the piles of freshly baked bread and hunks of focaccia filled with deli meats and cheeses. Ther focaccia and their fab collection of pizza are grilled super-fast in the bread oven so it’s great for a quick meal, before the cinema/theatre. But it’s also definitely worth a linger as it’s fantastic for people watching especially from the first floor balcony.

For those who need their caffeine fix the coffee is excellent too with a tiny custard – filled cannoli.

Ugly Bread also a great range decent number of alcholic and soft drinks including a cabinet filled with juices from Chegworth Valley , if you have never had apple and beetroot juice the pink colour is stunning.


Now you see it now you don’t this was Em’s first trip a couple of years ago, when she totally demolished a chorizo pizza.  I was slightly hoping to snag a few slices but lesson learned I now order my own pastrami , cheese and chilli foccacia.

Ugly Bread Bakery

39 Pelham Street (Opposite Sainburys)
21 Market Street (Across from Theatre Royal)

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Tandoori Salmon with Roasted Garam Masala Chick Peas and Cabbage Salad


I would love to say I make my own spice blends but I actually buy them in bulk from my very well equipped corner shop or the supermarket.  Definitely, something to look into in the future and there are plenty of recipes on-line if you fancy making your own.

A great weeknight dish – this is so quick to put together. The salmon and chickpeas cook under the grill on a timer, while I put the kids to bed.  I make the salad once they are down, but you can make the salad in advance.

If you don’t like salmon this would work with chicken or lamb.  Roasted chickpeas work brilliantly here. I often roasted them with

Roasted chickpeas work brilliantly here. I often roasted them with paprika , ras-al-hanout, jerk spice or even just a little olive oil and salt,  they come out deliciously nutty.

Tandoori Salmon with Roasted Garam Masala Chick Peas and Cabbage Salad

Tandoori Salmon

2 salmon fillets
2 tbsp dry tandoori spice or paste.

Rub the tandoori spice over the salmon filet
Grill under a hot grill (250degC) for 20 minutes.

Roasted Garam Masala Chick Peas

1 tin of chick peas
2 tsp of Garam Masala spice
1 tsp of oil

Mix together all the ingredients. Roast under a hot grill 250degC for 20 minutes

Carrot and Cabbage Salad

2 handfuls of white cabbage finely sliced
1 large carrot grated
½ red onion finely sliced
juice of half a lemon
½ tsp of nigella seeds

Mix together all the ingredients

Cucumber Mint Yogurt

4 tbsp of plain yogurt
½ tsp of mint sauce
1 tbsp of cucumber finely chopped

Mix together

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment


We are now heading into Autumn, which is my favourite season for walks and for food. It also means we take delivery of a whole lamb from Willoughby Farm also the home of some amazing chillis. They have a stall at our local farmers market – fortnightly in West Bridgford

The lamb arrives jointed though not packaged in a large bread tray, no strange dripping liquid in vacuum packs, the meat is dry and butchered that day. We portion the joints up filling our cellar chest freezer and they form the mainstay of winter stews and roasts.

While the large shoulder and leg joints are great for weekends, a fantastic weeknight treat are the lamb chops. Quick and delicious grilled, succulent juicy meat with moreish crispy fat. They cry out to be eaten with your hands, served here with some fresh and colourful salads packed with veg

It’s a very sad day in our house when the last of the lamb chops are eaten and we have to wait another year, although a kitchen remodel might leave room for a bigger chest freezer.

Lamb Chops seasoned with salt, paprika and chilli flakes

Season with salt, papria and chilli flakes. Grill for around 10 minutes on a high heat, turned halfway through.

 Beetroot, Feta and Bulgar Wheat Salad

Cook the bulgar wheat as per instructions, and stir in roughly chopped cooked beetroot, feta cheese, red onion ,oregano and season with salt and pepper

Roasted Cauliflower , Pepper and Rocket Salad

Roast the cauliflower and pepper with a drizzle of oil and salt and pepper at 180deg for 20 minutes. Roughly chop and mix with cherry tomatoes, a handful of rocket and chopped preserved lemon.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Pomegranate Chicken Kebab


We go through two massive white cabbages a week as we tend to have it instead of rice with curry’s and make homemade coleslaw. But a kebab salad is a classic.  Nothing nicer than a kebab, this is a delicious and healthy option which I could eat every day.

Pomegranate Chicken Kebab

Serves two

  • 4 Chicken thighs
  • 4 tbsp of pomegranate molasses
  • 1 garlic glove
  • 1 tsp of dried chillis
  1. Marinate the chicken for a few hours
  2. Grill the chicken thighs
  3. Finely slice and serve on a toasted wrap with salad (below) and a drizzle of mint yogurt.

Kebab Salad

  • 6 handfuls of white cabbage freshly shredded
  • 1 handful of fresh tomatoes roughly chopped
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped coriander leaf
  • ½ small red onion finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp of mixed olives roughly chopped.
  • 2 tbsp of preserved lemons – recipe here 

Mix together

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Another? – Nottingham’s First Self Service Wine Bar


Admist a half term of entertaining kids and juggling work, a night out seemed a long shot. But you cannot pass up the opportunity to visit Nottingham’s newest wine bar and it’s first self-service one.

Another? is located up a steep set of stairs above the busy chain restaurants on Trinity Square.  Every student in Nottingham was roaming the streets dressed or undressed for Halloween, so it was lovely to find a grown-up haven of twinkling candles, beautiful blue tiles and dozens of hanging wine glasses. It reminded me of a Spanish sherry bar, the only difference being instead of a barman there is a wall of electronic wine dispensers accompanied by tasting notes.

It’s not all machines though, the lovely staff gave us a charge card each and showed us to a table, fetching us complimentary nibbles and water.

To fill your glass,  you first choose your wine, enter your charge card and holding a glass under the spout, press a selection button for either a taster, small or large glass.


There were 16 different wines available when we visited, from Old World to New World. Usually, I look down a wine list, a select the same thing, something New World – Cabernet Sauvignon or Malbec.

It definitely did make me try different wines and a taster would definitely save you spending a lot on a whole glass if you just wanted to sample something new

It was good fun wandering along the line, reading the notes and there is definitely the social aspect of talking to other people about what they had enjoyed/would recommend.

Our cards were pre-charged and the amount remaining on the card was shown on the dispenser display along with your name. Normally you would accumulate charges on your card and pay at the end, so I assume you would see the spend so far on the display.

I quite fancied a wine dispenser at home, but apparently, they start at £1000 per bottle position, counting 16 bottle positions,  the investment in this bar has been significant so I hope it is a success.

Another?  , 9 Trinity Square, Nottingham











Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Botanist

Out twice in two weeks,  it must be a record. But when a very well known cocktail bar opens in your neighbourhood and invites you to their launch it would be very rude to turn them down.

The Botanists new Nottingham home is in West Bridgford, and 5 minutes walk from my house. In  Fire and Ice, a pretty dull bar and pizza place, the decorators have certainly been busy covering every inch of wall and ceiling with rustic planks and old farming implements. It felt warm and cozy on a very cold night.

Naomi and I usually spend our time together huddled on a cold playground or in our respective kitchens while our 5 very loud girls run in and out demanding food, drinks, and trantrum-intervention so it was lovely to be able to chat over delicious cocktails mine was a short Martini – the Velvet Green – full of green fruit and gin.  N had The Botanist a tall drink of vodka, rum and elderflower liqueur.

Our starters prawns and calamari were quirkily served with sauces mini watering cans. Although I say quirkly,  I mean annoying cos you cannot actually pour mayonnaise out a of watering-can and so we had to track down and spoon to scoop it out.

For mains,  we both had the famous hanging kebabs. Vertically hanging skewers of meat and vegetables served with a little pot of sauce to pour over the kebabs,  down onto the fries below. Sadly as the kebab is hanging in the air it cools really quickly and pouring sauce down just gives you soggy chips. I think it needed a salad or something crunchy with it.

We had the cheeseboard for pudding, lovely cheeses, slightly let down by being served with an assortment of crackers straight out of the Jacob’s Cracker Selection box with sandwich pickle. It’s a beautiful looking place and the staff were lovely,  as it was press launch it was also very very busy and they coped brilliantly.

This place does amazing cocktails and has an impressive ale list. Given the attention to botanicals,  I was probably expecting more garden inspiration in food but is perfect sharing food for the groups of people who will flock there. I’ll be back to try a Sunday Lunch with the family.
40 Bridgford Road , West Bridgford Tel : 0115 704 3700


Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Beetroot Burgers


We have burgers most weeks I love making my own. I kept reading about beetroot burgers being this big trend. So I wanted to try to make my own you can’t really have enough purple food!  I read a few recipes and had a go at making my own.

They were pretty tasty … next up I want to work on a bean burger recipe

Beetroot Burgers

Makes 4 large burgers

  • 3 cups of beetroot grated
  • 1.5 cups of rolled oats
  • 1 small red onion
  • 1 tsp of cumin
  • 1 tsp of red chilli
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 egg
  1. Mix together all the ingredients
  2. Form into patties and refridgerate for 30 minutes
  3. Fry in sunflower oil for 10 minutes turning halfway through

Serve with yogurt mixed with fresh mint and salad.


Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Loving the Larb

36541155213_4e326bb1ee_zA finally got out for the first time in so long this week.

As I was planning my escape a final guilt trip from my 6 year old. I said it would be fun to have a babysitter.”But you left us with a babysitter before…remember Adam. babysat.

She is right he did nearly a year ago while I went to the PTA Xmas Fair planning committee. That’s how often I get out.

But  this week I actually made it to a play and even a meal in a restaurant.  I ate Thai,  one of my all time favourite cuisines. I chose larb which is a dish I think it in line to be one of my last meals – minced spiced chicken – it’s heaven.

In fact it was so good I made it for the dinner the next night too

Chicken Larb

Enough for two greedy people

  • 4 chicken thighs/breast – grilled
  • 2 red chill peppers
  • 2 spring onions
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 4 tbsp of uncooked white rice – toasted in a pan and ground
  • juice of one lime
  • 5 tbsp of fish sauce
  • 5 tbsp of coriander leaf
  • 1 tbsp of fresh mint
  • half a small red onion
  • 1/2 thumb of fresh ginger

Iceberg lettuce leaves to serve

  1. Place the rice in hot dry sauce pan on a low heat for 5 minutes , keep tossing the rice and remove before it begins to brown.
  2. Grin in a mortar and pestle until it had a very fine texyt
  3. Finely chop the chicken thighs
  4. Process together all the other ingredients
  5. Mix with the chicken and half the rice
  6. To serve sprinkle the remaining ground rice over the top of the chicken


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Falafels on lavash with Pomegranate, Lemon Olive and Parsley Salad


Emily is obsessed with making lists and quizzes at the moment.  What is your favourite colour? What’s your favourite shape? What is your favourite food?

She gets annoyed I can’t say one favourite food.

But Falafels would definitely be up there. This is a sunshine food and I hope we get some more sunshine soon!


  1. Spread hummus over a falafel, scatter over freshly grated carrot.
  2. Add the falafels , scatter with the pomegranate granita
  3. Drizzle over some plain yogurt


Enough for 4 people

I make these with a mix of bulgar wheat and chick peas
It makes them light and crumbly as I don’t like a chewy falafel
They are baked not fried

300g of tinned chick peas
100g of bulgar wheat soaked
1 clove of garlic
1 tsp of ground coriander
1 tsp of fresh or dried parsley
1 pinch of salt

  1. Mix together the ingredients form into small balls
  2. Brush with sunflower oil refrigerated for 30 minutes
  3. Place under a hot grill for 15 minutes


1 300g tin of chick peas
½ garlic clove
juice and zest of 1 lemon
1 tsp of tahini
6 tbsp of olive oil or rapeseed oil

Blend together all the ingredients in the food processor.

Pomegranate Olive and Parsley Salad

Seeds from 1 pomegranate
¼ preserved lemon finely chopped
1 handful black olives finely slice
1 handful of fresh parsley finely chopped
1 stick of celery finely chopped
½ red onion finely chopped
1 fresh tomato roughly chopped
Juice and zest of a lemon

Mix together all the ingredients

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Salmon with Brown Rice, Quinoa and Asian Salsa


Tonight’s dinner is a picture of health

This salsa was adapted from something by Paul Rankin, it’s an amazing rainbow of green  red and pink from the picked ginger something you usually only have with sushi

I’ve always served the salsa with salmon . I used to use noodles, but this brown rice mixed with black, red and white quinoa (which they sell in Asda) is amazing. It’s worth making lots of extra as it’s great to have in the fridge for summer.

If you don’t make the salsa, I think kimchi or even regular guacamole would work well

Salmon with Brown Rice, Quinoa and Asian Salsa

Serves 2

Brown Rice with Red , Black and White Quinoa

  • 100g of brown rice
  • 100 of red, black and white quinoa

Cook the brown rice ( 40 minute simmer for rice) and quinoa (10 minutes) separately according to instructions.

Drain , mix and then chill

Asian Salsa

  • 1 avocado diced
  • 1 handful of cherry tomatoes diced
  • 2 tbsp of picked ginger
  • 2 inches of cucumber diced
  • 1 red chili finely chopped
  • juice of half a lemon
  • small bunch of coriander roughly chopped
  • 2 tbsp of soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp of fish sauce

Mix together the salsa ingredients and leave for 30 minutes in the fridge.


2 salmon fillets sprinkled with dried chili pepper

  1. Grill for 15 minutes under a hot grill.
  2. Allow to rest for 5 minutes
Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment