Simple spiced tomato soup

This is a simple soup recipe I go back to time and again and I have to simply quote the source as there’s no point me recreating what is a create recipe. You don’t even notice it is keto and I use it even when I’m off my diet. Highly recommend you give it a try..


Keto Tomato Soup


  • “300 grams Tomatoes You can also use tinned ones
  • 50 grams Onion
  • 10 grams garlic
  • 300 ml Chicken stock 
  • 100 ml Fresh Cream (Heavy Whipping Cream) 
  • 50 grams Salted Butter 
  • 1/2 Tsp Black Pepper Powder 
  • 1/2 Tsp Smoked Paprika 
  • 1 Tsp Pumpkin Spice Mix You can also use ‘All Spice’ mix. Headbanger recommends this and in the UK it’s quite difficult to find but I did find this:
  •  Fresh Basil for garnish
  •  Cheese for garnish
  •  Salt to Taste
  1. Heat the butter in a heavy bottom saucepan and once it has melted add in the onions with a pinch of salt.
  2. Cook the onions low and slow till they start to turn brown and caramelize.
  3. Add in the garlic and cook till it starts to brown and then add in the tomatoes and cook for about 2 minutes.
  4. Cover the pan with a lid and cook on a low heat for 5 minutes
  5. After 5 minutes of cooking add in the pepper, paprika and pumpkin spice. Also add in about 100ml of chicken stock. If your stock has no salt then add salt as well.
  6. Cover with a lid and cook for about 10 minutes till the tomatoes are completely soft. Keep opening the lid every 2-3 minutes and stirring to ensure nothing sticks.
  7. Once it’s cooked and tender let it cool. Then blend the mixture in a food processor or using an immersion blender. Add more stock if needed to make it easier to blend.
  8. Strain the mixture to get a silky smooth soup. Add more stock if the soup is too thick.
  9. Add heavy whipping cream to the soup and warm it up.
  10. Finish with fresh pepper, a bit of cheese and fresh chopped basil.”

Decoupage shoes

I used to have a really obsessive hobby in covering anything and everything in pretty paper. Decoupage is very therapeutic. One of the things I’ve previously made were my night before my wedding shoes that I covered in a video game theme. Recently a friend who is getting married asked me to make custom ones for her and her theme is some Marvel comic characters.

I therefore proceeded to make some wedding shoes. Decoupage is super simple especially if you don’t get caught up in the expensive kits. All you need is some PVA glue; water, a brush and some light weight paper with a pattern. Very simply you mix the glue with a splash of water and brush on whatever item you want to cover. Then smooth on the paper and coat again. That very simple is decoupage.

There are however some tips I can give you from over the years. The surface of whatever you are covering needs to be clean and dry. It helps if it’s shiny to be roughed up a bit. For example these shoes were patent gloss so I sanded them slightly with sand paper and a nail file. You should also try to use neatly cut; not torn bits of paper to keep it neat and use as small as is sensible especially around curves. I also like to cut out some blocks of matching colour from the same source. For example on the Green Lantern shoe I cut up small pieces of green from the comic book to provide a little background.

Finally PVA is waterproof to a degree but if you want your end product to last longer I’d recommend a light coat of craft clear spray varnish in very thin layers to prevent white bubbling.

Go decoupage!


Get Ahead Christmas Gravy (Jamie Oliver recipe)

After spending a Sunday afternoon lost completely in Jamie Oliver ‘Foodtube’ on ‘Youtube’ I came across his recipe for getting ahead on Christmas day gravy by making a mini batch now and adding it to the turkey tray on Christmas day. I love gravy and pride myself on it even having my own jar at home of gravy browning mix which is a mix of lots commercial brownings; my favourite spices and seasonings so I just have to add a spoon to the tray on Sunday lunch alongside the other ingredients. Therefore, the ability to an extra depth of gravy flavour on Christmas Day making it even more special really appealed to me.

I’ve taken his recipe almost literally except I was already making a roast chicken anyway on Sunday so I used that instead of especially buying chicken wings.


  • Pack of chicken wings (or the wings and legs off a cooked chicken)
  • Couple of sage and bay leaves
  • 1 pint chicken stock or even hot water
  • Trivet of chopped carrots; celery, onion, garlic
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon cranberry sauce or some sweet jam sauce
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Worcester sauce (
  • 1 tablespoon plain flour


  1. Add the trivet vegetables and the leaves to the tray
  2. Top with wings (or chicken if you are cooking it)
  3. Cook the chicken for as long as it needs
  4. Remove the wings and legs from the chicken and place back in the dish (I removed the breast for Sunday dinner)
  5. Add the plain flour
  6. Add the liquid ingredients and fill up with hot water
  7. Simmer for 20-30 minutes
  8. Drain through a sieve
  9. Allow to cool and freeze until Christmas eve when you remove ready to add the turkey dish after cooking on Christmas Day so you get double the flavour


Mrs Beeton’s Ginger Biscuit recipe



454g / 16 oz plain flour

227g / 8oz butter

227g / 8oz castor sugar

22g ground ginger (

2 eggs


Rub the flour and ginger together with the flour.  Once the ingredients are incorporated mix in the sugar.

This is a super simple but classic recipe everyone needs to give a go over the Christmas break to serve to guests or just have with a cup of tea.

I’d highly recommend reading a copy of ‘Mrs. Beeton’s Book of Household Management’:

Simple homemade lasagne

Having a baby has meant homemade cooking has become more difficult but as baby Max has gotten bigger (4 months!) I’ve bow had a little more time (and a high chair in the kitchen) to get cooking again.

I was surprised to see I hadn’t published my very simple lasagne recipe so here we go.


200g beef mince

1 onion chopped finely

Splash vegetable oul

Lasagne sheets

Grated cheese (mozzarella and cheddar mix is nice)


Salt and pepper

Grated Parmesan

Can of tomatoes

Squeeze of garlic and chilli puree

Tablespoon of sugar

Tablespoon of flour

50g butter

50ml of milk


1. Fry off the mince and onion in a pan until briwning

2. Add the garlic paste

3. Whilst the meat is browning you can open the tomatoes and add the chili; sugar and oregano

4. Add the tomato mix to the mince and simmer for 5 minutiae on a low heat

5. in a non stick pan add the butter and melt. Add the flour and stir vigorously until a paste is made and you cook out the flour and there are no lumps. Add the milk very slowly until a thick sauce is made. Add a handful of the cheese mix and take off the heat stirring until all combined

6. Spray an oven dish with oil and add a layer of the tomato mixture. Then add a layer of cheese mixture and then a couple of pasta sheets

7. Repeat until all used up and top with a sprinkling of Parmesan and salt and pepper

8. Bake at about 190 degrees c until golden brown (about 30 minutes)

Lasagne is always best second baked so once you have eaten half the dish be prepared for leftovers the next day. Put the dish back in the oven at 190 degrees c for 20 minutes with foil on and you have crispiest lasagne ever!