I made these for the Mawdach Wholefood Coop tasting super using up some ingredients that suggested Florentines! The recipe is inspired by Mary Berry’s Florentines but quantities differ according to what I had to hand!


  • 50g butter or margarine
  • 50g demerara sugar
  • 50g syrup
  • 50g Einkorn flour (any flour will do)
  • 100g glacé cherries, quartered
  • 50g candied peel
  • 50g almonds, peeled and halved
  • 100g chopped nuts
  • 200g milk chocolate


  1. Gently melt together the butter, sugar and syrup into a small pan and remove from the heat.
  2. Add the flour, chopped cherries, peel and nuts to the pan and mix well.
  3. Make 24 florentines by spooning 8 teaspoonfuls of the mixture on to each of the prepared baking trays, leaving plenty of room for them to spread during cooking.
  4. Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until golden-brown.
  5. Leave the florentines to cool before lifting onto a cooling rack using a palette knife
  6. Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water,into the bowl.
  7. Spread the melted chocolate over the flat base of each florentine and leave to cool slightly before marking a zigzag in the chocolate with a fork.
  8. Leave to set, chocolate side up on a cooling rack.
  9. Store in an airtight container.

Scrumptious pizza


  • 100g strong white bread flour
  • 100g spelt flour
  • flat tsp easy yeast
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 120g warm water
  • Half jar pizza topping
  • Half bag of Co op grated mozzarella cheese
  • Half bag of Co op grated hot and spicy cheddar
  • Sliced goats cheese ring
  • Frozen and defrosted spinach


  • Turn on fan oven to 220 degrees centigrade
  •  Mix all ingredients and knead in food processor
  • Leave to rise for 30 mins
  • Knead again then roll out to fit well oiled pizza tin (31 cm)
  • Spread with tomato paste
  • Sprinkle with grated cheese
  • Place on sliced goats cheese and spinach
  • Cook for 12 mins

Sugar free banana and date flapjack

I found this recipe at Mumsnet and adapted it.

Thanks Mumsnet

Prep time:15 minutes 

Cook time:25 minutes 


  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 180g oats
  • 150g dates chopped
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 3 bananas


  1. Put the dates in a pan with the lemon juice and heat gently for 5 mins
  2. Meanwhile mash the bananas in a large bowl and weigh the oats
  3. Add the dates and lemon juice mixture to the bananas and mix together.
  4. Stir in the oats and the vanilla essence and leave for 5 mins, so the oats absorb the oil.
  5. Spoon the mixture into a well greased baking tray and bake at 175C/Gas Mark 5 for about 25 minutes.
  6. Cut into squares while still warm and cool on a cooling rack.


  • I used a 8 inch square tin and cut into 16 pieces.
  • Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Low Fat and Vegetarian

Spicey chick pea and sweet potato soup

1 onion
3 sticks of celery
1 leek
1 sweet potato
1 tin of Chick peas or equivalent of cooked dried chickpeas
1 carton of sieved tomato
500 ml of stock
Small amount of chopped chilli or chilli powder to taste
Seasoning to taste

Chop onion, celery and leek and fry gently for 5 minutes in a large saucepan
Peel and dice the sweet potato and add to pan
Add all other ingredients and bring to the boil
Simmer gently for as long as you have got!!


Almond & date slice

This is a gluten  and dairy free treat and very yummy!IMG_1864

Makes 12
Preparation 10 mins
Cook 20 mins
Fan oven temperature  175oC


100g chopped dates
Juice of one lemon
165g Ground Almonds
150g sugar (I used caster sugar but will use muscovado next time
4 eggs

A handful of Flaked Almonds

(Or 3 eggs, 100g sugar and 125g almonds)


  • Grease and line a 26cm square tin
  • Put the dates in a saucepan with a tablespoon of lemon juice and 2 tablespoons of water and simmer for 5 mins
  • Combine all the remaining ingredients except the flake almonds with the softened dates mixing well.
  • Place the mixture in the prepared tin and sprinkle with the flakes almonds
  • Bake in the oven for 30 minutes

Inspired by

BBC Food: Gluten Free Almond and apple cake

Chocolate, coconut and brazil nut treats

This is a recipe that used up some bits and is based around a standard victoria sponge recipe.

Makes 12
Preparation 10 mins
Cook 20 mins


120g margarine or butter
120g sugar
2 eggs
100g spelt flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
50g coconut
50g chopped brazil nuts
1 tablespoon cocoa
50g raisins


  • Grease and line a 26cm square tin
  • Cream together the margarine and sugar
  • Beat in the eggs
  • Add all the dry ingredients and fold in
  • Fold in the raisins
  • Place mixture in the prepared tin
  • Bake in the oven for 20 mins
  • Allow to cool for 5 minutes before cutting into 12 pieces and transferring to cooling rack

Very scrummy without being completely over the top unhealthy.


We started with a blank piece of papIMG_1793er in the garden as it had nothing in it except for the remains of two rockeries (just the rocks) lots of Japanese knotweed, the ashes from a number of attempts to eradicate the knotweed. We do also have some lovely stone walls and our set of 3 grade 2 listed privies which were covered with ivy. The ground is fairly flat but as it does slope to an extent we are creating some tiers rising towards the south boundary.

So far we have put in a fence to keep Gyp to the privies side of the garden and stop her leaping onto the walls and visiting the neighbours. We’ve also moved a lot of rubbish including rocks, glass, crockery and batteries away from the west wall. It seems there was a bit of a rubbish tip there which Gyp used as her launch pad to scale the top of the wall. Amongst other things we unearthed a large stone from the south west corner which took quite a bit of moving. The stone is now in place in the corner of what will be a retaining wall of one of the tiers.

The garden plan so far:

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