Making the most of your bathroom

Our bathroom at the moment, is small, plain & boring. It is tiled in white and cream tiles and painted in a a terracotta type colour. The shower is broken and could probably do with replacing and the spot lights in the ceiling often play up and do not work. It is something we keep meaning to get fixed but never get around to doing it as we are too busy or just generally forgot.

I came across an app at bathrooms.com that looked useful and could possibly help us. I believe it could be very useful for anyone to use, it seems easy to navigate and easy to use, even for people with basic understanding. It shows you how to fix or replace things in your bathroom, while making it very easy to understand. it is not just for fixing broken items, it is about maintaining them, as well as recommendations for parts to purchase. It is a very interesting app that could benefit you in different ways, depending on what you want to achieve in your bathroom.

I have taken this little write up from their site to show what it is and where to find it.

Bathrooms.com have announced the launch of their ultimate Bathroom DIY resource web app to help people enhance the value of their home whilst providing simple guides to those irritating DIY problems in and around the bathroom. Whether home owners are looking to replace taps, drill into tiles or replace a radiator, this web app will point you to the best resources available.

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To view the app, you can find it here : DIY app

You can look around and see for yourself what it does and how useful it could be for you.

Dairy, egg & Gluten free pancakes

I love pancakes, so I thought I would try something different. I usually have dairy & gluten free but I thought I would try some egg free as well as the other day we had run out of eggs.

It is a pretty simple recipe and they still taste great.

1 Cup of doves farm self raising flour

1 Cup of soya milk

1 tsp of baking powder

Whisk together until you get a batter, you can always add more flour or milk, depending on the consistency or amount of pancakes you wish to make.

They make nice fluffy pancakes

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HUNGARIAN GULYAS LEVES AKA GOULASH GLUTEN FREE

HUNGARIAN GULYAS LEVES AKA GOULASH

  • 1 x onion
  • 4 x carrots
  • 3 x large potatoes
  • Olive Oil
  • 500g of stewing beef
  • 2 heaped tbs Hungarian paprika
  • Fresh flat leaf parsely
  • 1 teaspoon Vegeta seasoning (this is a hungarian vegetable stock, you can often find it in the Polish section of the supermarket or standard veg stock will do)
  • 1 x red pepper
  • 1 x green pepper
  • 1 x tinned tomatoes
  • Water

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  • Finely chop the onions & dice the carrots, potatoes and peppers into bite sizes
  • In a large pan heat the oil and brown the meat, once all sides are browned remove to another bowl
  • In the pan now add the onions to fry, do not let them brown, add a pinch of salt to stop them browning.  Then add the carrots, and peppers and saute for a few minutes
  • Now turn down the heat, return the meat and then add the paprika powder (I know its a lot but trust me, but it is also very important to not let it burn)

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  • Now add the tinned tomatoes, and the vegetable stock, add some extra water so every thing is covered, depending on the type of stock you use
  • Add the potatoes, put the lid on and leave it to cook over a low heat for at least an hour. Keep
    checking and adding more water so it retains its soup consistency
  • Serve with nokedli dumplings (I will do a recipe for these) or some nice crusty bread  (Gluten/Dairy free versions can be made)

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Enjoy

Lime, Red Pepper & Chilli Salsa

A perfect little recipe to add flavour to some of your favourite meals

 

Ingredients:

1 x jar of roasted red peppers (the ones in Lidl are great for this)
2 x large green chillies
clove of garlic
1 x lime
Fresh coriander
Maldon Salt

Method:

  1. Drain the peppers, and put them into a food processor.  Cut the stalks off the chillies and put into the processor too (with seeds still in) along with the clove of garlic.
  2. Zest the lime, and add to the other ingredients, then juice the lime and add this too.  Remove the stalks from a bunch of coriander and put this into the blender too.
  3. Whizz up until all blended and smooth. Add the salt and give it another quick whizz.
  4. Serve with a sprig of coriander on top. Perfect as a nacho dip, or with fajitas.

 

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Beef stroganoff with Rodda’s Cornish clotted cream GLUTEN FREE

Stroganoff is already one of the kids favourite meals, I make a variation of either beef, pork or some times even meatballs and always served with rice.

Ingredients:
  • 150g chestnut mushrooms
  • 500g trimmed beef fillet
  • 100ml vegetable oil
  • 100g unsalted butter
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, grated
  • 2 tbsp sweet paprika
  • 50ml Brandy
  • 100ml beef stock
  • 1 bunch of chives, finely chopped
  • 50g gherkins, cut into batons
  • 200g Rodda’s Cornish clotted cream

Method:

 Prepare the mushrooms by trimming the stalks 2 cm from the caps (cut other mushrooms into large chunks). Cut the beef fillet across the grain into 1cm thick steaks, then cut into batons. 

Heat a large frying pan and add the vegetable oil, when hot add the beef in batches, turning until browned on all sides but still rare in the centre.

Remove the meat to a bowl, then add the mushrooms to the pan along with 30g of the butter. Cook until softened, then add the mushrooms to the beef in the bowl.

Turn the heat to medium and add the remaining butter followed by the onion and garlic. Sweat this mix down until fully softened but without any colour. This should take around 5 minutes. Add the paprika and cook for a further minute before turning up the heat and adding the brandy. Be careful, this may flame and evaporate some of the alcohol.

Once the flames have gone out add the beef stock and bring back to the boil. Add 200g of Rodda’s Cornish clotted cream and stir. Put the beef and mushrooms back into the sauce and check for seasoning. Sprinkle the chopped chives and gherkins over the top, then serve over tagliatelle, steamed rice or mashed potato.

 

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Enjoy

Which tablet operating system best suits you?

Tablets have fast become as essential part of the modern lifestyle, there are many out there, ranging from very budget to quite expensive. They use different operating systems and differ quite a bit, but, it’s not always the most expensive that is considered the best. It’s hard to remember a time without a table, but, it was not actually that long ago they hit the mainstream consumer market, but, since then they have become the ‘Must have’ peice of technology.

Below is a simple guide to 3 different types of Tablet operating systems, this in my opinion is the most important factor you need to choose. Before actually decided which tablet you would like to invest in.

Android Tablets

Android 4.0 builds on easy multitasking, rich notifications, customizable home screens, resizable widgets, and deep interactivity with your tablet. Android 4.2 introduces a completely new camera experience, a new form of typing that helps you power through your messages, and much more

Windows Tablets

Windows 8 works the way you do. It’s easy to do more than one thing at once on your tablet. Run multiple apps at the same time, and snap two apps side-by-side.
Put your favorite apps, sites, and people on the Start screen, get live updates at a glance, and get to anything with a tap or a click.

Apple Tablets

iOS is the foundation of the iphone, ipad and the ipod touch. It comes with a collection of apps that let you do everyday things, and even the no so everyday things, in ways that are intuitive, simple and fun. And it’s loaded with useful features you’ll wonder how you ever did without.

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Remember to choose wisely, it may be a difficult choice to make at first, but once you make it and take the plunge, you will never look back. Good luck.

Best tablets this Christmas

Three of the Best Tablets on the Market

Depending on the reason for owning a tablet, whether it be for playing games, work applications or as a learning tool, some are more suitable than others for certain needs.

Here is a review of some of the pros and cons of the best Tablets on the market today.

The iPad Air £400 +

Light and mobile with a strong aluminium protective shell and advanced retina display, this is a fine example of Apple’s technology. A great tablet for game-playing, adventure games like Oceanhorn and The Drowning are recommended to show off this tablets abilities to the full and not just visually but also for sound quality. Text is also more legible than on previous iPads and when tilting the screen, colours remain clear and vivid. The placement alterations to the metal buttons mean less chance of an accidental tap of the wrong button while in use and the lightness makes this a great tool for watching movies without getting arm-ache. This tablet is a superb all-rounder, and the improved bass sound from the speakers adds a little extra dynamic to music and gaming apps. The only real downside with the iPad Air is that storage space comes at a price, it’s not the cheapest tablet, but it is one of the very best.

Nexus 7 2 approx. £200+

The improvements to the Nexus 7 have made this newest version look and feel much more up-to-date and modern than its predecessor. The smooth and stylish black plastic back makes the tablet more comfortable to hold as it practically sticks to clothing material when placed on the knees, making it stable and comfortable to use.

The iPad mini, which is seen as the Nexus 7 2 counterpart, is 20mm thicker, which makes the Nexus pocket-sized and therefore more easily transportable.

The placing of the power and volume rocker buttons have only been slightly improved from the Nexus 7 and still cause annoyance when used for long periods of time with their positioning, they are just too close together!

Having power buttons that can accidentally be knocked during gameplay and while using other applications is annoying. It’s difficult to imagine the dismay when accidentally turning off the tablet in the middle of an online casino tournament or while playing Online Craps Royal Vegas for example.
However, Nexus 7 2 now has surround sound, so for music, making music and for watching films, it won’t disappoint when using these kinds of apps.

The improvement of the display is prominent, making text and images appear razor sharp, although the camera is disappointing.

Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 approx. £340+

The 8.0 version of the Samsung Galaxy Note still feels cheap with its plastic back and child-like uni-body design. However as it is only 8mm thick and weighs just 338 grams, it is light and comfortable to hold. What the stereo speakers lack in fidelity, they make up for in volume, making it ideal for those who enjoy listening to music or using music production apps such as Wireless Mixer.

The stylus is the crowning glory of this tablet; it allows variations of pressure for writing or drawing and includes a variety of special features activated by mouse-like controls on the pen. The touch screen is disabled while the stylus is in use, which eliminates mistakes made by accidentally touching the screen with your fingers. The Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 is a good all rounder, but especially useful for being creative and using apps such as Sketchbook Mobile Express.

Greek style Christmas roast lamb (Low FODMAP)

Give the festivities a kick this winter with this fantastic Christmas roast lamb, inspired by Greek cuisine. Cooked in garlic infused olive oil and served with seasonal vegetables for added crunch and flavour, this is a seasonal favourite with a fantastic twist perfect for those suffering from IBS.

 

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Bursting with the citrus flavour of lemon and the delicate seasoning of oregano, this lamb dish is sure to go down a treat with guests of all ages and a great accompaniment or replacement for the traditional Christmas turkey. Soft and tender meat hidden beneath a crisp and tasty skin, this is one meat dish you just won’t be able to get enough of.

Christmas lamb – Greek style
To make this dish, you will need:
Leg of lamb (2kg)
Lemon (1, cut in halves)
Garlic infused olive oil (2 and 1/2 tblsp)
Brushed Sebago potatoes (6, peeled and cut into thirds)
Dried oregano (1 tblsp)
Baby carrots (1 bunch, trimmed)

To make this dish you will need to follow these steps:

1. Pre-heat the oven to 220°C.
2. Place the lamb leg in a large baking dish and make incisions into the meat using a sharp knife. Incisions should be approximately 10x4cm.

3. Take one half of the lemon and squeeze the juice from it. Combine this with 1tbsp of garlic infused olive oil and some salt and pepper for added seasoning.

4. Cut the other lemon half into small pieces (10 approximately).

5. Push these lemon pieces into the incisions made in the lamb and brush the meat with the oil mixture.

6. Roast in the centre of the oven for 15 minutes.

7. Toss the potatoes, carrots, oregano, salt and pepper in the remaining oil and arrange around the lamb in the dish.

8. Return the dish to the oven and turn the temperature up to 230°C.

9. Roast the potatoes and carrots for another 15 minutes until crisp.

10. Cover the lamb loosely with foil and rest outside of the oven for 15 minutes.

11. Carve the lamb for each diner. You can save some of the meat to make extra dishes such as Shepherd’s Pie or lamb casseroles if you want.

12. Serve the carved meat with the potatoes and carrots.

Enjoy this delicious meal with your loved ones, visit YorkTest to find out more about food intolerance and low FODMAP diets.

A typical days food

I thought I would do a short post on a typical days eating now I am on a full Gluten & Dairy free diet.

I will use todays as an example

1. Stir fry (All fresh and chopped) Turkey breast, 1 pepper, Courgette, Mushroom, Carrot

2. 1 orange, Celery & sesame curry slice

3. 1 banana, 2 pancakes, small amount of sugar, walnuts

4. 2 sausages (Good quality, all meat), Several potatoes chopped par boiled and fried in olive oil, 2 eggs.

x3 strong good quality multi vitamins

Today I didn’t go to the gym, so, what I have eaten will be slightly different. I like to eat as much as I possible can fresh and cooked myself from scratch.

 

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Get out your Christmas Jumpers

It’s that time of year, time to get the christmas jumpers out. There are plenty to choose, from Funky to classic and everyone loves a good slogan.

The shopping centers, web stores and high streets are manic with crazy retail action again – it has to be Christmas. People are getting stressed and anxious about buying the perfect gift. Buying something for a friend or a loved-one can be difficult, especially if you want to be original. That is why so many people are putting Christmas jumpers on their shopping list this year. The spirit of Christmas is alive and well in the latest range of festive sweaters, so they make special and highly original gifts. Whatever is on your list, it’s important to keep in mind the spirit of Christmas.

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So what are you waiting for, Get out there and pick the right jumper, the one for you or someone else, make sure it matches the personality and have some fun doing it. It only happens once a year and getting the jumpers out has become a big part of the christmas fun.

I personally like a mixture of cheesy & a fun slogan design, i’ll most likely go out and buy one nearer the time or order it on line. Out of the ones above, the ‘Bah humbug’ is grabbing my attention with the elf design green one running up in a festive cheesy like second place.

I hope you all have fun this christmas, whatever you’re wearing and whatever you are doing.