Tesco Taste Northern Ireland- Thompson’s Tea

As I write this I have just finished my first week back at work after maternity leave. I was off for seven months after having a beautiful baby girl Niamh on New Years Day.

As any new mums know, having a cup of tea, never mind a hot cup of tea (!), can be a real luxury. Quick, she’s sleeping- put the kettle on! So, when Tesco NI asked if I would like to try some Thompson’s Tea, of course I had to say yes.

Thompson’s Tea is a Northern Irish tea blender whose range includes Punjana Original Blend, Titanic Blend and Irish Breakfast Blend. I received the Thompson’s Signature tea and Green Tea with Lemon.

Stocked up with the tea bags, I decided to host an afternoon tea party on my last day of maternity leave to say thanks for all the help I had received over the past few months. It was also my birthday so another perfect excuse for cake!

I’ve written on my blog numerous times about my love of afternoon tea so I wanted to give my own a go, including baking for the occasion.

To start, for the savoury layer, I made wheaten bread to be served with honey roast ham, mature cheddar and tomatoes. While the wheaten bread was in the oven, I whipped up some vanilla scones, which I served with butter and jam.

To finish Tesco kindly supplied me with some lovely sweet treats from local producers, Howells Florence Cake and Genesis Crafty buns.

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But of course, the best bit of any afternoon tea is…the tea!

I opted for the Signature blend which was a strong, full bodied cup of tea, without being too bitter. Thompson’s Tea have stated it is “tea like it used to taste”, because they have recreated the family’s original blend from way back in 1896. It’s a rich, flavoursome cup of tea and actually reminds me of loose leaf tea. Lovely!

The verdict? Well the afternoon tea went down a treat! Even my baking got some rave reviews!

Now, quick she’s sleeping, I’m off to enjoy another warm cuppa!

 

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Post originally appeared on Tesco NI website: https://www.tasteni.com/eat-me-drink-me/belfast-travels-takes-a-tea-break-from-motherhood

Afternoon treats with Andrew Ingredients

Last week I was invited along to Kingspan Stadium by Andrew Ingredients, a Lisburn-based business which provides products to the baking industry across Ireland.

The event was to showcase their extensive range of goods, as well as launch a new rugby-inspired bread product, NO 8, in partnership with German ingredients supplier IREKS.

Throughout the afternoon, Andrew Ingredients discussed the latest bakery innovations and advice, as well as offer an unbelievable choice of samples.

I’m not joking when I say I tried breads, buns, muffins, baps, donuts, brownies, cookies, pizza…..the list goes on!

Check out the rugby ball bread, if you get the chance!

Launch of NO 8

Musgrave Healthy Twitter Tasting!

Tonight I was invited by Musgrave Marketplace to try and make some healthy snacks in real time, following the recipes live on Twitter!

I’d never done something like this before and I’m pretty slow when cooking and baking, (checking and double checking the recipe books that I’m doing it right) so I was looking forward to trying it out as quickly as the 140 character Tweets were flowing.

I was sent the ingredients (and the hat!) from Musgrave and the blender from Kenwood and at 6pm I was ready to go!

On the Twitter menu…? A Nutty Banana Smoothie, Hummus and Protein Bounty Balls, all recipes from three time Olympian and cookbook author, Derval O’Rourke!

So how did I get on? Well here are the pics and recipes! It was a thumbs up from the family!

Thanks again to Musgrave- what a interesting way to learn!

Nutty Banana Smoothie

INGREDIENTS

1 banana, peeled
1 tbsp nut butter
3 tbsp porridge oats
1 tbsp milled flax seeds
200 ml almond milk
1 scoop Kinetica chocolate protein powder

Makes one tall glass.

METHOD

Place all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth.

Pour into a tall glass and serve, or pour into a BPA-free travel cup and take on the go.

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Hummus

INGREDIENTS

1 tin chickpeas, drained and rinsed
4 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
zest and juice of 1 lemon
4 tbsp good quality extra virgin olive oil
1-2 tsp tahini
1-2 tsp tabasco sauce
salt and pepper

Makes four large portions.

METHOD

Place all of the ingredients in a food processor and blitz until you have a smooth consistency.

Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve with crackers.

Store any leftover hummus in an airtight container and keep in the fridge.

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Bounty Bar

INGREDIENTS

3 scoops Kinetica chocolate protein powder
25g raw cacao powder
1tbsp agave/honey
40g porridge oats
40g unsweetened desiccated coconut, plus some for rolling
75ml almond milk
pinch of salt

Makes seven to eight bars.

METHOD

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl.

Scoop out onto parchment paper and form into a flat (about 2cm tall) square. Cut into squares or rectangles, roll in remaining desiccated coconut, and enjoy.

Best stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator

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IMG_7864And relax and enjoy!