Friday, July 24, 2015

Zingy Lemon & Blueberry Scones - The perfect summer scone

Scones are an Irish Institution. I grew up on tradition fruit scones, slathered with butter and jam. What I've come to realize however is scones are quite versatile, be it cheesy savory scones or deliciously sweet scones.
These zesty lemon and blueberry scones are the perfect summer scone. They are an ideal snack for  for your daily elevenes and especially great for those side of the road picnics.
I love a big fluffy scones so I always use self raising flour as well as baking powder, so I get a good rise from my scone!


  • 900g of self raising flour
  • 175g of butter
  • a pinch of salt
  • 60g of caster sugar
  • 3 heaped tsp of baking powder
  • 550ml of full fat milk
  • 50ml of fresh lemon juice
  • Zest of one lemon
  • 200g of bleberries
  • 1 egg (beaten)


  1. Preheat the oven to 230 degrees.
  2. Sieve the self raising flour, salt, and sugar into a large bowl.
  3. Rub in the butter until it resembles coarse breadcrumbs.
  4. Stir in the lemon zest.
  5. Combine the lemon juice and milk and make a well in the centre of the buttery flour mixture.
  6. Pour the milk in and mix until a soft dough forms.
  7. Once the mixture has come together, turn out onto your work surface. Make sure your work surface is well floured so the dough doesn't stick. Rub some flour into your rolling pin also.
  8. Roll out to one inch thick and stamp out the scones with a glass or cutter.
  9. Space then well on a lined sheet of baking paper on a baking tray and brush with the beaten egg to get a lovely golden colour.
  10. Bake in the oven for approx 12-15 minutes until beautifully risen and golden brown.
  11. Cool on a wire rack and then serve with some Irish butter and jam; or if you want some further indulgence some lemon curd and clotted cream.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Lemon Curd & Blueberry Tarts - The Fastest Tarts in the West

I had to think twice whether or not to post this recipe as it's nearly too easy, and hardly a recipe at all. But then I thought why not show how a bit of quick thinking can help transform just 3 ingredients into something truly scrumptious.

Shop bought ready rolled puff pastry is an absolute godsend! The possibilities for baking recipes are endless. Here I'm using my own homemade lemon curd, but you can just as easy buy a good quality jar of lemon curd.

 The lemon and blueberry flavours are a match made in heaven, but you could always subsitute the blueberries for raspberries if you wish.

I made these tarts this morning for my Bed and Breakfast guests. I'm usually up against the clock in the morning preparing the breakfast, but as these tarts require minimum effort, they were the perfect choice for early morning baking!


  • 1 sheet of ready rolled puff pastry
  • 12 tsp of lemon curd
  • 24 blueberries


  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.
  2. Line a baking sheet with baking paper.
  3. Stamp out 12 circles of pastry rounds
  4. Place 1 tsp of lemon curd in each pastry disc, followed by 2 blueberries.
  5. Pinch up the sides of the circle, so the lemon curd doesn't escape.
  6. Spread the discs out of the baking sheet and bake in the oven for 14-15 minutes.
  7. Allow to cool completely on a wire rack when baked.

Friday, July 3, 2015

Healthier Southern Fried Chicken

What could be more American than a big bucket of fried chicken!!!! So to celebrate the 4th of July tomorrow I decided to make some southern fried chicken for dinner to celebrate the occasion.

While I admit these fried chicken pieces are not something you should eat everyday, I have significantly reduced the calorie content of the chicken by baking the chicken rather than deep frying. Even though the chicken is healthier they are still finger licking good, and with a slaw accompaniment; in the words of Ina Garten, what's not to like???!!!

This recipe is based on 14 drumsticks. Here was I thinking that we will have the leftovers on our picnic to Dingle tomorrow, no such luck as my ravenous husband ate every last one of them. Oh well that's what they were there for!


  • Chicken drumsticks x 14
  • 8 tbsp of wholegrain flour
  • 2 tbsp of sesame seeds
  • 1 tbsp of white pepper
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • 2 tbsp of paprika
  • 4 tbsp of oil 
  • 250 ml of butter milk


  1. Marinade the chicken in the buttermilk, either overnight, or for at least 4 hours. This really tenderises the meat.
  2. In a large plastic sandwich bag, add the flour, seeds, pepper, salt and paprika and ,mix well.
  3. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees.
  4. Take the chicken pieces out of the buttermilk, shake off the excess and place in the flour mixture bag. 
  5. Seal and shake the bag well ensuring all chicken pieces are coated.
  6. Remove the chicken from the bag, shake a little to remove the excess coating and place on a plate ready to give them a gentle fry before baking in the oven.
  7. Put the oil in a non stick frying pan and heat to a high heat, then quickly fry the chicken until lightly browned.
  8. Place the browned chicken in a single layer on a baking dish and bake in the oven for 30 minutes, turning once or twice. The chicken should be a beautiful bronze colour when fulled cooked.
  9. Serve with a generous side of slaw and lots of napkins.

Happy 4th of July

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