Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta

Who doesn’t love an easy, quick to make, healthy meal? Exactly. I love pasta, mostly for its versatility. Any number of sauces or meals can be made to go with a million varieties of pasta. Where would we be without it? Thank you Italy, you may have invaded Britain, however it’s time to let things go, as you gave us pasta. More specifically the fusilli bronze die pasta used in this Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta.

FF Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta
Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta ready to serve.

Next time you think of tossing a jar of pesto into pasta for dinner, think again. Since this dish only took 30 minutes to make, it is definitely worth trying. Not only do you get a balanced healthy meal, it is filling, like a proper meal should be. Bite sized pieces of chicken breast, fresh baby spinach wilted into the tomato and cream cheese sauce.

FF Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta
Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta a filling meal.

If you are cutting down on carbs you may not like my next suggestion. That is, to serve this tasty bowl of goodness with a chunk of baguette, or crusty bread. While not swimming in sauce, there will be some pooled on your plate or bowl. This is where bread is important. Dunking. Using the bread to absorb every last drop of this creamy sauce. Keeping with the low fat theme, there is no reason why the bread should be buttered. In fact there will be a greater absorbency area if left unbutterd. Win win!

FF Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta
Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta dinner time!

Food should be enjoyed. Indeed it should be a feast. It should feed more than our tummies, it should feed our soul. Giving thanks before eating is a custom here at home. Yet stopping for a moment to look and smell the food in front of you is also important. Too much food is literally shoved down throats while watching television. I wonder if the taste even has time to register with the brain. Eating with family, while sitting up at a table, not only slows down the rate at which we eat, the entire experience is altogether more pleasurable. Hence – food tastes better when it is shared.

Time to make this delicious dish.

Recipe: Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta serves 4-6 people

500g Diced Chicken Breast  skin off cut into bite size pieces- I use Graig Farm

1tbsp Olive Oil

1 Large Leek – washed and cut into small dice

2 x 400g Chopped Tin Tomatoes plus 1 tin of pasta cooking water

200g Washed Baby Spinach – frozen can be used if out of season

1tbsp Fresh Thyme finely chopped – plus additional Thyme for garnishing the finished dish

140g Philadelphia Cream Cheese – I use full fat, by all means try a lower fat version if you’re confident cooking with it

1tsp Sea Salt  – I use Maldon

Good Grinding of Fresh Black Pepper to taste

450g Fusilli Pasta – bronze die leaves rougher edges on the pasta and so it absorbs more sauce

Method:

  • Place a heavy bottomed pan on to the hob over medium heat. Add the olive oil and allow to heat.
  • At the same time place a large pan of water on a high heat, ready to cook the pasta. When the water is boiling add a teaspoon of sea salt and then the pasta and cook for 8 minutes.
  • Into the other pan add the chopped chicken breast and cook until lightly browned.
  • Remove the cooked chicken to a plate and then add the chopped leek to the pan.
  • Saute the leek until it is softened and then add the cooked chicken back to the pan.
  • Immediately add the 2 tins of chopped tomatoes and use a wooden spatula to scrape the base of the pan clean. Follow by adding the chopped fresh thyme.
  • Next tip the baby spinach into the pan. Don’t worry if it is piled high it will wilt down.
FF Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta
Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta the tomatoes clean the base of the pan.
  • Remove a can full/2-3 ladles of hot pasta water and pour on to the spinach. Be careful as it will be hot.
  • Drain the pasta and tip on to the spinach. Allow the spinach to wilt down, it will release it’s water and make the sauce thinner.
  • Next add the cream cheese to the pan and stir so that it melts into the sauce.
  • Most importantly, taste the sauce. Add a good grinding of fresh black pepper to taste. Additional salt should not be needed as the pasta water used is salty.
  • Sprinkle over fresh Thyme and the dish is ready to be served.
FF Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta
Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta creating the finished dish.

Serve this delicious Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta in bowls.

FF Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta
Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta dinner’s served.

Since this dish is ideal to make ahead, it is also perfect for transporting. Ideal for a new family or friend who is unwell. This dish is as perfect to share outside the home as it is with family and friends around the dinner table.

If you have enjoyed this recipe for Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta then you may also like these:

Cheesy Vegetable Pasta Bake

FF Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta
Cheesy Vegetable Pasta Bake.

Lemon Garlic Vegetable Orzo

FF Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta
Lemon Garlic Vegetable Orzo

Chicken and Four Cheese Lasagne

FF Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta
Chicken and Four Cheese Lasagne

Pasta is such a versatile ingredient in the kitchen. Also, once cooked it can very often be frozen as this Creamy Tomato Spinach Chicken Pasta, Chicken Four Cheese Pasta and Cheesy Vegetable all can be. While cooking from scratch takes barely more than 10 minutes. Pouring over some sauce (recipe coming soon) or the lemon garlic sauce that accompanies the Orzo recipe above. Easy meals are a busy household’s must.

Have fun creating, cooking and baking in your kitchens.

Sammie xx

Please do not copy any part of this post. See my Disclosure Policy for full details.

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Creamy Low Fat Mushroom Soup

Creamy Low Fat Mushroom Soup easy to make and delicious to eat.

Autumn is well and truly here. Golden and red leaves, flutter like confetti to the ground. The perfect time of year for walks in the park or woods. Also, it is the season for fungi and mushrooms. If you go foraging, whilst out on a walk, make sure you have a guide, or book, to ensure you only pick what is edible. The mushrooms for this Creamy Low Fat Mushroom Soup came from the supermarket where they are available all year round.

FF Creamy Low Fat Mushroom Soup
Creamy Low Fat Mushroom Soup full of goodness and flavour.

Being able to buy mushrooms all year round means that this soup can also be made whenever you want. Since this soup is incredibly easy to make and completely delicious, you may find yourself making it year round!

FF Creamy Low Fat Mushroom Soup
Creamy Low Fat Mushroom Soup perfect with rustic wholemeal bread.

While I used white, button mushrooms for this recipe, chestnut, or portobello would also taste delicious. Sautéing the mushrooms slowly, ensures that they release their deep, earthy flavour. As a result, the finished soup has a rich mushroom flavour, that is not heavy. Sneaking in a potato not only thickens the soup, it also gives it beautiful creamy texture too.

FF Creamy Low Fat Mushroom Soup
Creamy Low Fat Mushroom Soup add a splash of cream if you dare 😉

Ok so I added a swirl of cream, just to see what it would add to this soup. While it does add an extra luxurious note, perfect for special occasions, or dinner parties, the soup doesn’t need it. For example in my Leek and Potato Soup the cream really rounds out the flavour and texture. Whereas here, with the mushroom soup, the creaminess is already present.

If you want to add a swirl of cream, I won’t judge!

FF Creamy Low Fat Mushroom Soup
Creamy Low Fat Mushroom Soup so full of healthy flavour.

Full of flavour and texture, an immersion blender is used to ‘cream’ this soup. Rather than whizzing the soup to a completely smooth consistency, very small chunks are left in to give a better, more interesting texture. However, you may purée the soup to whatever consistency you desire. That’s the beauty of making good, homemade food.

Recipe: Creamy Low Fat Mushroom Soup serves 4 people

1 Leek washed and trimmed

1tbs Butter – alternatively you may use olive oil

300g Mushrooms

1 Medium Sized Floury Potato

1 Vegetable/Chicken Stock Cube – I use Knorr

1L Very Hot Water – from a kettle

1/4tsp Freshly Ground Black Pepper

1/4tsp Sea Salt – I use Maldon

Method:

  • First, place a heavy bottomed soup pan on to the hob, over a medium heat. Now add the butter.
  • While the butter is melting chop the leek into a medium dice – approximately 1cm pieces.
  • Once the butter has melted add the chopped leek to the pan and sauté for 3-4 minutes until they become soft.
  • Meanwhile slice the mushrooms and then cut the slices in half.
  • Next add the sliced mushrooms to the softened leeks.
  • Lower the heat slightly and continue to cook the mushrooms and leeks for a further 10 minutes, until the mushrooms are soft.
  • Peel and medium dice the potato, then add it to the saucepan.
  • Now add 1 litre of very hot water, from the kettle and a stock cube. Stir, put on the lid and allow to simmer for 30 minutes.
FF Creamy Low Fat Mushroom Soup
Preparing the soup.
  • After simmering for 30 minutes, remove the saucepan from the heat.
  • Make sure you are wearing an apron for the next step. I speak from soup splattered experience!
  • Use an immersion blender to blend the soup until it is almost smooth. One of the benefits of using this method to blend soup is, it allows you to feel, as well as see, how smooth the soup is. Also, if you do not have an immersion blender, a standard blender will still blend the soup well. Take care not to overfill the blender and allow the soup to cool slightly before using this method.
  • Check the soup for seasoning and adjust as necessary.

To serve, warm the soup and serve with thick chunks of rustic bread.

FF Creamy Low Fat Mushroom Soup
Creamy Low Fat Mushroom Soup a delicious way to warm up!

Each mouthful of this soup is a treat to your tastebuds. Perfectly balanced flavour that is nutritious and delicious.

This soup will keep, cool and place into an airtight container, keep in the fridge for up to 4 days.

If you have enjoyed the recipe for my Creamy Low Fat Mushroom Soup you may also like these other healthy and low fat soup recipes:

Carrot Soup

FF Creamy Low Fat Mushroom Soup
Carrot Soup garnished with crumbled Stilton cheese.

Roast Chicken Noodle Soup

FF Creamy Low Fat Mushroom Soup
Roast Chicken Noodle Soup an economic meal.

Roasted Garlic Butternut Squash Soup

FF Creamy Low Fat Mushroom Soup
Roasted Garlic Butternut Squash Soup warm and comforting.

Homemade soup is so easy to make. Also, the reward, far outweighs the minimum effort needed to prepare and cook the soup. Delicious, good for you and incredibly soothing on cough ravaged, sore throats, which seem in abundance at this time of year. While eating this soup, you can almost feel it doing you good.

Do you have a favourite soup recipe?  Please let me know as I love new ideas, old ideas, any ideas that taste great!

Have fun, making, baking and creating, in your kitchens.

Sammie xx

 

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Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns

Who doesn’t enjoy a toasted, buttery, Hot Cross Bun, in the run up to Easter? My previous post shows you how to make these delicious buns. Some people, for whatever reason, can only eat 100% wholemeal bread, so I decided, they shouldn’t have to miss out on all the Easter food fun and so developed this recipe for 100% Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns.

Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns
Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns perfect just as they are!

Everyone can enjoy these Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns, eaten just as they are or split and toasted with a light spread of butter.

The beauty of these buns is, you get that wonderful, cinnamon, spicy aroma, that fills the house whilst they are baking and then you get it again when they are toasted.

In fact, having just toasted a hot cross bun, for my breakfast a couple of years ago, there was a knock on the front door. The postman had a parcel to deliver. As I stood there signing for the parcel, the postman revealed that he could smell the toasted bun and that it was his favourite smell in the world!

Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns
Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns a healthy breakfast or snack.

These Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns are just as easy to make and bake as the regular ones. I switched the flour from strong white bread flour, to 100% wholemeal baking flour – not bread flour. I upped the yeast content and with a few more tweaks, these gorgeous buns were made!

Wholemeal Hot Cross Bun
The cross on this Wholemeal Hot Cross Bun is there as a reminder.

The cross on the bun, is there to symbolise and remind us of The Cross on which Jesus died, only to surprise a lot of people, when He was fully alive two days later. It is good, that the small symbol of a cross on a bun, reminds us that Jesus came for a reason. To love the unloved, to heal the sick, to befriend those that society cast out. Don’t forget, out of two of His followers, one was a tax collector and the other a prostitute!

So amidst all the chocolate and bunnies, lovely though they are, maybe take a moment to remember you are loved.

The book of John chapter 3 verse 16 says:

“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, so that who so ever believes in Him shall not be lost (perish), but have everlasting life.”

One small verse packs quite a powerful punch. You and I are the who so ever. Know that you are loved. No matter what your circumstances, you are loved more than you could ever imagine.

If you would like to know more about this, please read Important Stuff.

Now to show your body some love by making these Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns.

Recipe: Makes 12 Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns

500g/1lb 2oz Wholemeal Flour (not bread flour) – I used Duchy Organic from Waitrose

160ml/scant 6fl oz Whole Milk – slightly warmed (body temp)

120ml/4.5fl oz Water – slightly warmed (body temp)

2 Large Eggs – I use free range

1tbsp Honey

14g/ 2 Sachets Fast Acting Dried Yeast

10g/ approx 1tsp Salt

50g/2oz Unsalted Butter at room temp. – plus extra for greasing the baking tray.

3tsp Cinnamon

150g/5oz Sultanas or Raisins

For the crosses:

50g/2oz Wholemeal flour

60ml/2.5fl oz Water

Apricot jam or honey to glaze approx 2tbsp

Method: This method is for use with a bread maker or stand mixer. You can off course make these Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns by hand.

The ‘bowl’ refers to the bowl of a stand mixer or the mixing compartment of a bread maker.

  • Add both the milk and water to the bowl.
  • Next add both eggs, the honey and yeast.
  • Swish about with clean fingers to mix.
  • Now add the flour on top of the liquid mixture.
  • Place the salt and butter on top of the flour.

For a bread maker, set the cycle to dough and press start. When prompted by the machine, or 5 minutes before mixing stops, add the cinnamon and Sultanas. Allow the bread maker to complete the dough cycle.

When the bread maker has completed the dough cycle, ensure the dough has doubled in size, if not wait until it has. Then re start the dough cycle for 2 minutes, this will ‘knock back’ the dough for you.

For a stand mixer attach the dough hook. Start mixing on a low speed. Once the contents of the bowl resemble dough continue to mix on medium/slow speed for 5 minutes. Stop the mixer. Scrape all the dough, from the hook, into the bowl. Add the cinnamon and Sultanas. Lower the dough hook and mix on medium speed for a further 5 minutes.

After the 5 minutes mixing is complete, stop the mixer. Scrape all the dough back into the bowl, it will be very sticky – don’t worry. Cover with a damp cloth and leave in a draught free place until doubled in size – 1 – 1 1/2 hours.

Once the stand mixer dough has doubled in size, lower the dough hook and mix on medium speed for 2 minutes, this will ‘knock back’ the dough for you.

Shaping the Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns – Grease a large baking tray  (40cm x 28cm x 2.5 cm) with butter.

  • Tip the dough out onto a lightly floured surface.
Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns
Lightly form the dough into a ball.
  • Cut the dough in half using a large knife or metal dough scraper.

Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns

    Roll each half into a log shape and cut into 6 even portions.
  • Roll each portion into a ball. Tucking the seam at the bottom.
Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns
Place each dough ball on the baking tray, spacing evenly apart.
  • Cover with a damp cloth and place in a draught free place until doubled in size – approx. 1 hour.
Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns
Whilst the buns are proving mix the flour and water together, for the crosses and place in a small piping bag or plastic sandwich bag.
  • Once the buns have doubled in size, snip the end off of the piping bag (corner of a sandwich bag) to leave a small hole.
  • 10 minutes before the buns are ready to bake preheat the oven to 220C/200C fan gas mark 7.
Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns
Pipe the crosses onto the Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns.
  • Place the buns into the middle of the oven and bake for 20 minutes.
  • The Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns are baked when they are a deep golden brown and sound hollow when rapped on the base with your knuckle.
Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns
Once baked remove the Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns from the oven and transfer to a cooling rack.
  • Place the apricot jam into a heatproof bowl and microwave for 20-30 seconds to melt.
  • Brush the warm buns with apricot jam using a pastry brush.
  • Leave to cool completely.

Gorgeous Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns ready to be shared with loved ones!

Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns
Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns packaged into a tin, ready to be given away.

If you have the capacity, why not bake a double batch of these delicious Wholemeal Hot Cross Buns and give some away?

The feedback I have from these buns has been excellent. I tried one myself and they truly are moist, not heavy or dense and packed with delicious fruit and cinnamon flavour. What more could I ask for?

I’m sure friends, family, work colleagues or even your postman would appreciate such a delicious gift!

Do you have special dietary requirements?

I am going to be working on a gluten free/dairy free version of these buns in the next few days.

If you enjoyed this recipe then you may want to take a look at these:

Wholemeal Cob Loaf

Crunchy Seeded Bread

Cranberry Walnut Flapjacks

I hope you have fun making and baking, but especially feasting with others.

Sammie xx

 

 

 

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Roast Chicken Noodle Soup

How good does this delicious Roast Chicken Noodle Soup look? It tastes even better!

Roast Chicken Noodle Soup www.feastingisfun.com
Roast Chicken Noodle Soup www.feastingisfun.com

Hi! Now it’s not very often I mention the words ‘low calorie’ or ‘low fat’ here, on feastingisfun – but, well it would seem, I may have put on a few pounds. I’m guessing I may not be the only one.

Am I right?

Roast Chicken Noodle Soup - delicious, easy to make and virtually fat free! www.feastingisfun.com
Roast Chicken Noodle Soup – delicious, easy to make and virtually fat free! www.feastingisfun.com

So I’ve come up with a delicious way to help you save money and keep your weight in check – this Roast Chicken Noodle Soup!

Seriously, one roasted, chicken breast, a few veg and this soup feeds 4 people!! It can easily be doubled, if cooking for a crowd, or kept in the fridge, waiting for a quick, thorough re-heat, after a long day at work!

Whats not to love?

Roast Chicken Noodle Soup low in fat, delicious and nutritious www.feastingisfun.com
Roast Chicken Noodle Soup low in fat, delicious and nutritious www.feastingisfun.com

I roasted a chicken breast quarter for this recipe, but leftovers from a Sunday roast would work perfectly. In fact we are having roast turkey today and I intend to make a batch of this soup with a little of the leftovers, for the week ahead!

Oh and did I mention this soup is virtually fat free???

One teaspoon of olive oil, to sauté the vegetables, is all the added fat there is!

I guess you could poach the chicken, instead of roasting it, but that would rule out leftovers AND all the flavour in this Roast Chicken Noodle Soup comes from roasting the meat, at the start.

I happily defer to the Barefoot Contessa, Ina Garten in these matters. She has been cooking chicken, for her husband Jeffrey, for many, many years and if she says roasting chicken imparts the most flavour, well who am I to argue?

I also kinda have a confession!!!!

I have never liked, pre-made, chicken noodle soup. It’s what is know in our family as ‘headache food!’ Don’t ask me how it got that name, it just did.

Now, in the interests of clarity, I’m talking packet soups. You know the flat packets that when ripped open reveal powder and dehydrated vegetables. Never liked the chicken noodle one – loved minestrone though!

Roast Chicken Noodle Soup - not from a packet mix!! www.feastingisfun.com
Roast Chicken Noodle Soup – not from a packet mix!! www.feastingisfun.com

So creating this recipe was a double challenge. Firstly to see if I could make a Roasted Chicken Noodle Soup with very little fat and secondly, to see if I could eat it (without getting a headache) and enjoy it and make it taste way better than the packet soup from my childhood. That’s three things – never mind!

Anyway, I totally scored on all points. This Roasted Chicken Noodle Soup is delicious, low-fat nutritious and no headache!!!!

This is how to make it:

Recipe: Serves 4 portions Roast Chicken Noodle Soup

Approx 225g/8oz Roast Chicken – deboned, skin off and shredded

1tsp Olive Oil

1 Medium Onion – finely diced

3 Carrots – finely diced

2 Celery Sticks – finely diced

1/2tsp Fresh Thyme – strip the leaves from the stalk (halve if using dried)

1 Chicken Stock Cube (I prefer Knorr stock cubes) dissolved in 1.2l/2 pints boiling water

100g/4oz Vermicelli or other small, dried pasta

Salt and Pepper to season

Method:

Roast a breast quarter of chicken, at 180C for 30-40 minutes, until cooked through.

One delicious roasted chicken breast quarter.
One delicious roasted chicken breast quarter.
When slightly cooled, remove the skin and shred the chicke, discarding any bone.
When slightly cooled, remove the skin and shred the chicken, discarding any bone.

Alternatively shred approximately 225g/8oz of roast chicken or turkey.

Place a large pan, over a medium heat and add the oil.

Add the diced onion, carrots and celery to the pan.
Add the diced onion, carrots and celery to the pan.

Saute the vegetables until just softened, approx 7 minutes.

Add the shredded chicken and fresh thyme to the pan.

Pour over the chicken stock.
Pour over the chicken stock.

Weigh out the noodles of your choice.

I used broken up vermicelli.
I used broken up vermicelli.

Add the noodles to the soup.

Taste for seasoning. Add salt and pepper as necessary.

Simmer for 5 minutes, or until the noodles are cooked.

Serve immediately.

Roast Chicken Noodle Soup add some parsley to garnish and serve. www.feastingisfun.com
Roast Chicken Noodle Soup add some parsley to garnish and serve. www.feastingisfun.com

To make a hearty meal out of this soup serve with some thick, crusty bread like my Wholemeal Cob Loaf or Wholemeal Loaf.

If you want to avoid carbs altogether, you could add shredded cabbage, or spirilized courgette (zucchini).

This Roasted Chicken Noodle Soup is absolutely delicious, quick to make, fab for using up leftovers and feeds 4 people for very little. It’s a win-win recipe and one I shall be making frequently.

Are you battling a few extra, post Christmas pounds?

If you love this Roast Chicken Noodle Soup then you might want to have a look at these –

Carrot Soup also low fat,

FF Carrot Soup
Carrot Soup served with crumbled Stliton cheese.

Leek and Potato Soup leave out the cream and you will lower the calories in this delicious soup!

Leek and Potato Soup velvety comfort.
Leek and Potato Soup velvety comfort.

Roasted Garlic Butternut Squash Soup.

FF Roasted Garlic Butternut Squash Soup
Roasted Garlic Butternut Squash Soup just add crusty bread!

Let me know if you make this soup? I love reading your comments.

Sammie xx

Continue reading Roast Chicken Noodle Soup

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Wholemeal Loaf

What have I got here for you today? Only a 100% Wholemeal Loaf!

Delicious,tasty, Wholemeal Loaf www.feastingisfun.com
Delicious,tasty, Wholemeal Loaf www.feastingisfun.com

Gorgeous, crusty, healthy bread. Perfect for increasing fibre in your diet and keeping you feeling fuller for longer.

A completely Wholemeal Loaf is never going to be as light, or rise as much as a Large White Bloomer.

This is because the wholemeal flour has less protein (gluten) per gram than white flour, as the bran and germ have not been removed. So a Wholemeal Loaf is always going to be denser than a white loaf. What I have found, is, that when making wholemeal bread using the regular, knead/prove/knockback and then prove again, I’ve had disappointingly heavy loaves. So I set about trying to improve the result.

Wholemeal Loaf full of fibre and flavour www.feastingisfun.com
Wholemeal Loaf full of fibre and flavour www.feastingisfun.com

I am not claiming the following method is fool proof, or the only way to make 100% Wholemeal Bread, a quick search on the internet proved that! Sorry no pun intended well maybe! What I’ve found is, by triple proving the dough, the resulting bread is far more digestable and totally delicious.

Wholemeal Loaf where's the butter? www.feastingisfun.com
Wholemeal Loaf where’s the butter? www.feastingisfun.com

Wholemeal bread is extra delicious when paired with oily fish, such as smoked salmon, smoked mackerel or tuna. I particularly enjoy it, toasted, alongside a golden, dippy yolked, free range egg – the perfect breakfast.

Whatever your reason for wanting to make and bake this bread, the triple proving method ensures the resulting loaf is delicious and more easily digested.

I personally enjoy baking and eating a variety of breads, yet this Wholemeal Loaf and my Crunchy Seeded Bread are top of my favourite loaves for sandwiches and toast.

Well they do say that “Variety is the spice of life!!”

Recipe: Makes 1     Wholemeal Loaf (750g)

450g/1lb Strong Wholemeal Flour

2tsp/1 sachet Fast Action Dried Yeast

1tsp Runny Honey

325ml/1/2 pint Tepid Water

1tsp Salt

25g/1oz Unsalted Butter plus extra for greasing the loaf tin.

Method: Grease a 3lb Loaf Tin with butter.

Using either a bread maker or free standing mixer, with dough hook attachment, add the water, yeast and honey into the bowl. Gently mix together with clean fingers.

Add the flour on top of the water mixture.

Next add the salt.

Break the butter into small pieces and add to the bowl.

If using a bread maker, set the programme to dough cycle and start. When the cycle is complete, start the dough cycle again. This will knock back the dough and prove it for a second time.

If using a stand mixer, lower the dough hook and mix on a medium speed. Once all the ingredients have come together to form a dough, continue mixing for 10 minutes on a low – medium speed. Stop the mixer. Remove any dough from the dough hook and form into a ball. Place back into the mixer bowl, cover with a damp cloth and leave in a draft free place for an hour.

In the stand mixer, after an hour, lower the dough hook into the bowl and proceed to mix, as before for 10 minutes, this will knock back the dough. As before, stop the machine, scrape any dough off the hook, form the dough into a ball, cover with the cloth and leave for a further hour.

Once the second prove is complete, gently press the dough into a flat rectangle. Fold the bottom third upwards and then fold the top third down, over the first fold. Place the dough, seam side down, into the greased loaf pan. Cover with the cloth and leave for a further 1 – 2 hours, until doubled in size.

You can add a light dusting of flour to the top of the loaf before it bakes.

Preheat the oven to its highest setting 10 minutes before the wholemeal loaf is ready to bake.

Wholemeal Loaf a few gentle slashes across the top and a little sprinkle of flour give the loaf an extra special look www.feastingisfun.com
Wholemeal Loaf a few gentle slashes across the top and a little sprinkle of flour give the loaf an extra special look www.feastingisfun.com

Place a baking tray, or grill pan in the bottom of the oven and fill with boiling water. Creating a steamy environment, will help the bread form a delicious crust.

When the oven is hot and full of steam, carefully place the loaf tin (with the cloth removed) into the oven and bake for 30-40 minutes.

The bread is baked when it is a golden, crusty brown and sounds hollow when rapped on the base with your knuckle.

Remove the bread from the oven. Turn out the loaf immediately and leave to cool completely on a rack.

Wholemeal Loaf - how do you like your bread? www.feastingisfun.com
Wholemeal Loaf – how do you like your bread? www.feastingisfun.com

If you make this loaf I would love to see your photos. Post them on Twitter and Tag me in with #feastingisfun.

I really hope you enjoy this delicious Wholemeal Loaf and you may also like this recipe –

Wholemeal Cob Loaf

This Wholemeal Loaf was baked in a British manufactured 3lb loaf tin available from British Bakeware.

I did not receive any payment for using this tin. All opinions and content are my own.

Sammie xx

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Oat Bran White Bread

Hi, if you follow this blog then you will know the following facts:

I use butter in both my baking and cooking,

I make as much as possible, of what we eat from scratch,*

We eat Cookies and Cakes as treats in our home,

I never use ‘diet’ or ‘light’ products,

I believe in using the most natural and seasonal ingredients available,

Occasionally I use good quality, prepared products,

I try to feed myself and our family a healthy diet,

I’m not into faddy food, but having food allergies myself, I am attempting to increase the number of gluten free recipes on this site.

*I’m not perfect and we have standby dinners in the freezer for days when I can’t cook.

All that said, I do try to make as much of our own bread as possible. If I didn’t have a bread machine or stand mixer I simply would be unable to make bread from scratch.

Oat Bran White Bread www.feastingisfun.com
Oat Bran White Bread www.feastingisfun.com

 

I am pretty sure that I’m not alone in living in a home with varied tastes? Whilst I love the nutty, chewiness of a Wholemeal Cob Loaf, our children prefer white, seeded or wholemeal/white half and half. So in an attempt to please everybody I’ve come up with my Oat Bran White Bread. A delicious white loaf packed with healthy oat goodness!

Oat Bran White Bread crunchy crust and delicious crust www.feastingisfun.com
Oat Bran White Bread crunchy crust and a delicious crumb www.feastingisfun.com

 

Recipe : Makes 1 Medium Oat Bran White Bread Loaf

450g/1lb Strong White Bread Flour

100g/4oz Fine Oat Bran

50g/2oz Rolled Oats

2tsp/1sachet Active Dried Yeast

1.5tsp Flaked Sea Salt (1tsp free flowing salt)

1tbsp Unsalted Butter

400ml Tap Water at room temperature

Method :

Using a bread maker or stand mixer, pour the water into the  bowl and then add the yeast.

Next add the flour, oat bran and oats.

On top of the dry ingredients add the salt and butter.

Set the bread machine to dough cycle and start.

If using a stand mixer, attatch the dough hook and mix until all the ingredients come together. Continue to mix for 5 minutes. Stop mixing and remove the dough hook. Cover the bowl with a damp cloth until the dough has doubled in size, approx 1 hour.

Once doubled in size, remove the cloth attach the dough hook and mix for a further 5 minutes, this will ‘knock back’ the dough.

Once the bread mixer has finished the dough cycle, start it again, allowing it to mix (knock back) the dough for five minutes.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Flatten the dough with your hands and form into a rough square shape.

Fold the bottom third of the dough up and then the top third of the dough is folded down, slighlty overlapping the seam.

Place the dough into a well greased loaf pan.

Cut 3 deep slashes, diagonally across the dough and sprinkle over a few oats.

Oat Bran White Bread ready for its second prove www.feastingisfun.com
Oat Bran White Bread ready for its second prove www.feastingisfun.com

 

Cover with a clean cloth until doubled in size. Approximately 10 minutes before your loaf is ready preheat the oven to its hottest setting or 250C.

Oat Bran White Bread risen and ready for the oven www.feastingisfun.com
Oat Bran White Bread risen and ready for the oven www.feastingisfun.com

 

Remove the cloth and place the tin in the hot oven. Turn the temperature down to 230C and bake for 20-30 minutes, depending on how dark you like the crust.

Once baked turn the loaf out of its pan and allow to cool completely on a rack.

Oat Bran White Bread I almost called this a Porridge Loaf! www.feastingisfun.com
Oat Bran White Bread I almost called this a Porridge Loaf! www.feastingisfun.com

 

Actually ‘Porridge Loaf’ wouldn’t have been a bad name for this unbelievabley good Oat Bran White Bread!

Oat Bran White Bread good for you and will keep you fuller for longer www.feastingisfun.com
Oat Bran White Bread good for you and will keep you fuller for longer www.feastingisfun.com

 

This loaf has a wonderful texture and flavour. It certainly doesn’t taste like porridge, but the oat bran lends a slight nuttiness, without the full on slog you get from a wholemeal loaf.

It slices beautifully and makes equally good toast and sandwiches, although I confess to enjoying a slice with just butter on it. A really good loaf should have its own flavour and not just be a package for some cheese and ham.

This Oat Bran White Bread has that. A characteristic taste, that passed our children’s ‘white bread’ taste buds, yet with a definite flavour boost, that is only going to do you good.

If you love white bread, but want to incorporate more healthy fibre in your diet – this loaf is a great place to start!

Would you be happy to try this bread?

Here is another bread recipe you may enjoy

Crunchy Seeded Bread

Sammie x

 

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Peach and Banana Smoothie

Hi and thanks for dropping by.  Are you having a good Monday or is it a bit of a drrrraaaagggg?  Mondays can be a real dichotomy.  If you’re on holiday, honeymoon or just cos the sun’s shining, then Mondays can be great!! If it’s another week at work or school, with deadlines looming, meetings pressing and the sun nowhere to be seen, it can be the hardest thing ever having to haul yourself outta bed and start another working week.  This super easy Peach and Banana Smoothie not only looks like sunshine in a glass, it tastes amazing, is made in moments and it’s good for you!!  Just the pick me up needed on a Monday, or any other day of the week.

Peach and Banana Smoothie - a glass of sunshine to brighten your day!
Peach and Banana Smoothie – a glass of sunshine to brighten your day!

So whatever day you are having this super easy, super delish, Peach and Banana Smoothie is exactly what you need to give you the energy to face the day!

Peach and Banana Smoothies - ideal to have with Breakfast!
Peach and Banana Smoothies – ideal to have with Breakfast!

Although I’ve pitched these as ideal for breakfast, I actually made this mid afternoon!!! We’d had a late breakfast, skipped lunch and I didn’t want us (me included) snacking on sugary treats whilst waiting for dinner.  So far, so good! Dinner’s still an hour away and no ones hungry.

A healthy, filling, sunshine Smoothie.
A healthy, filling, sunshine Smoothie.

To make these Peach and Banana Smoothies all you need is:

Recipe : Makes 4 servings.

3  Bananas

2 x 400g Tubs/Cans Peach Slices in Fruit Juice

Method :

Tip the peaches and juice into a blender, or a food processor.

Peaches in....
Peaches in….

Next peel the bananas, break them into chunks and add them to the peaches.

Your Peach and Banana Smoothie is a few pulses away.
Your Peach and Banana Smoothie is a few pulses away.

Blitz the peaches and bananas until you have a lump free Smoothie.

Get ready to pour....
Get ready to pour….

And then pour your smoothie into a tall glass…

It's like pouring liquid sunshine!!
It’s like pouring liquid sunshine!!

Next enjoy!

Such a scrummy smoothie
Such a scrummy smoothie

During the summer you could add frozen bananas, or substitute tinned peaches for fresh and add some ice to make this a cool drink.  But for mid February this Smoothie was fab as is. Enjoy!!!!

Easy, quick Peach and Banana Smoothies - delish x
Easy, quick Peach and Banana Smoothies – delish x

I hope you give this a try and that it makes you smile on a Monday, Tuesday, in fact what ever day you make it!

Sammie x

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