Mushroom Parcels in Filo Pastry Recipe

These are delicious little pasties, ideal for a light lunch, served with salad, or even an accompaniment to a curry or as part of a buffet party. Try serving with a little chutney or relish.

Makes: 16
Preparation Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes



4 sheets filo pastry
12 oz strong flavored mushrooms, such as field or porcini
2 oz butter, melted
Extra butter for frying
1 shallot, peeled and finely diced
2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed or minced
1 tsp fresh thyme leaves, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
2 oz feta or goats cheese (omit this if you are serving with a curry)



Heat oven to 400°F/200°C. Line a large baking tray with non-stick baking paper.

Cook the mushrooms, shallot and garlic in butter over a low heat until tender. Add the thyme and cook for a further 2 minutes. (add cheese at this point, if required).

You can either place this mix in a liquidizer and pulse until fine, or chop the mix yourself so that there is still texture, and not almost liquidized.

Lay a sheet of filo on the work surface and brush with the melted butter. Make sure you keep the other sheets covered with a wet tea towel. Cut into 4 strips.

Place 1 tbsp of the mushroom mix about ½ inch in from the corner and fold over to a triangle shape. Continue folding up and down, keeping the triangle shape. Place on the baking tray.

Repeat the process until you have made all 16 triangles. Brush each triangle liberally with melted butter.

Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden and crisp. Serve on a platter garnished with leaves and chopped herbs, or with a salad for a light meal.

Coconut Rice Pudding with Mango Recipe

A delicious, warming and traditional dessert that is quite filling. The addition of mango slices to the top adds another texture and compliments the rice pudding really well. One of the children’s favorites.

Serves: 4
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hr



4 oz short-grain rice
8 oz coconut milk
4 oz milk
2 tsp orange zest
4 tsp caster sugar
1½ tsp vanilla essence
4 oz cream
2 medium sized mangos, stone removed, peeled and sliced
Sprinkling brown sugar or cinnamon



Place the rice, coconut milk, milk, zest, sugar and vanilla in a saucepan over a low/medium heat and bring to the boil.

Reduce the heat, cover and cook for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. When the rice is cooked, remove from the heat and leave to cool with the lid on. If you don’t have a pan with a suitable lid, cover with aluminum foil.

When the mixture is cold, stir in the cream. Pour into a serving bowl, top with mango and a sprinkling of brown sugar or cinnamon.

Arancini (Rice Balls) with Sundried Tomatoes and Mozzarella Recipe

The Sicilians claim that arancini originated on their island, but other Italian regions totally disagree! Whoever invented it did a great job with these little morsels of risotto rice and a variety of fillings. We have kept the simple version, but you can stuff the balls with meat, bolognaise, ham and cheese, mushroom, almost anything! If you have made a risotto, this is a great way to use up any leftovers.

Makes: 16-20 balls
Preparation Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 5-10 minutes



9 oz risotto or arborio rice
1 onion, very finely diced
1 garlic clove, minced or crushed
1 oz fresh Parmesan, grated
5 oz white wine
20 oz Vegetable Stock
16-20 tiny mozzarella balls (sometimes called Mozzarella Pearls)
5 oz all purpose flour
2 medium eggs, beaten
4 oz dried breadcrumbs (we actually used panko)
Vegetable oil for deep frying
1 small jar of sundried tomatoes, drained and finely chopped



Using a little olive oil, add the chopped onion and crushed garlic to a pan and cook for 2 minutes or so until soft.

Put the risotto rice into the pan and cook for a further 2 minutes to coat the grains before adding the white wine.

Wait until the wine has been absorbed by the rice then add some of the stock. Stir to distribute, then repeat the process every time the wine is absorbed.

Once the risotto has achieved the right level of tenderness (you don’t want it to be slushy) put to one side to allow it to cool.

Heat a deep-fat fryer to 340°F/170°C/Gas Mark 4 (or whatever temperature you normally use).

In the meantime, take a palmful of the rice and gently place some chopped sundried tomatoes and the mozzarella pearl into the center. Roll into a ball. Repeat this with the remaining risotto.

Roll the balls in flour, then egg and then breadcrumbs, until all balls are coated.

Drop into the hot oil in batches. Make sure you have kitchen paper to hand to drain the balls of excess oil.

Serve with a side salad or leaf salad and a tomato dip.

Spanish Paella Baskets Recipe

You guests will think you are so clever and creative when you serve these delicious paella baskets. The lovely tortilla ‘basket’ is made so easily and resembles an open shell from the beach and is filled with a mouthwatering selection of fish and/or seafood. You can also make this basket with chicken and chorizo, if  you have guests who are allergic to fish. The baskets can be made the day before, as can the fish stew part of the recipe, as long as you reheat to the correct temperature. You will need a large dutch oven or casserole dish to prepare the fish, one with a lid that can be put on top of the stove.

Serves: 6
Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes



6 tortillas
1 lb mixed fish such as cod, haddock, salmon or any firm white fish
8 oz large raw prawns/shrimp
A few mussels (say 2 per basket) or clams (4 per basket)
2 pints fresh fish stock
1 large glass dry white wine
4 garlic cloves, very finely chopped
Large bunch parsley, very finely chopped
8 oz cooked saffron rice (cook rice as per packet instructions but add saffron in at the beginning of the cooking process)
Seasoning to taste



Heat oven to 180°C.

First prepare your baskets, by greasing/oiling the outsides of 6 coffee mugs. Wrap the tortilla around each mug (upside down). They should stick to the mug, but if you are struggling, you can always use a piece of string to tie each one.

Place the tortilla baskets onto a tray and into the oven. Bake for 15 minutes until crisp. Remove from the oven and allow to cool before removing string if you have used it.

In a large dutch oven/casserole dish, pour in the white wine and fish stock, and scatter in the garlic. Bring to the boil and then turn to a simmer. Add the fish pieces first. Allow to simmer for 10 minutes, and then add the prawns/shrimp and half the parsley. Place the lid on to allow the fish to steam. After 5 minutes, add the mussels or clams, ensuring they are completely clean, and none are ‘open’. Replace the lid and steam for a further minute until the mussels open.

Line the bottom of each basket with the cooked rice, then ladle on the seafood mixture and some of the poaching liquid. Scatter with remaining parsley and serve.

Open Roasted Vegetable Lasagna Recipe

Tasty and quick to make, this open lasagna is full of flavor and can be made using almost any vegetables that you have left over. Try it and see.

Serves:  2
Preparation Time:  15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes



6 lasagna sheets, either fresh or soaked in water if dried
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
8 button mushrooms
1 courgette, sliced into rounds
6 green olives
1 large beef tomato, sliced
½ red pepper, sliced
4 tbsp passata
2 garlic cloves, skinned and finely chopped
2 tsp freshly chopped oregano
Freshly ground salt and pepper

To serve:
1 tablespoon Parmesan shavings
A drizzle of olive oil



Heat oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas mark 6.

Grease a small oven proof dish or small loaf tin.

Mix the onion, mushrooms, courgette, olives, tomato, pepper, passata, garlic, oregano and some freshly ground salt and pepper together.

Place 2 lasagna sheets at the bottom of the greased ovenproof dish to cover the base and spread a third of the vegetable mix over the top. Put another 2 sheets of lasagna on top and put another third of the vegetable mix on top, followed by the remaining 2 lasagna sheets, and finish with a layer of the remaining vegetable mix.

Cook for 25-30 minutes until piping hot.

 Divide into 2 and serve with the Parmesan shavings and a drizzle of olive oil.

Wound Up In Murder | Yarn Retreat Mystery Series | Betty Hechtman

Wound Up In Murder

Product Description

Series: A Yarn Retreat Mystery (Book 3)
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Berkley (July 7, 2015)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0425252655
ISBN-13: 978-0425252659


Other Editions

Kindle Edition (What's Kindle?)

With two yarn retreats in the bag, Casey is looking forward to running her third one at Cadbury by the Sea’s Vista Del Mar hotel on the Monterey Peninsula. This time, each knitter will get a Mystery Bag of knitting materials to turn into a personal project.

But Casey gets tangled up in another retreat at the same hotel, when the organizer and his wife have a very public spat. As Casey is delivering her baked goods later that night, she finds the woman dead in the bushes with a magician’s silk scarf nearby—just like the scarf Casey’s ex-boyfriend, Sammy, used during his magic act at the retreat. As Sammy takes center stage as the prime suspect, Casey and her friends will have to stitch together the clues before the real killer pulls a disappearing act...

Darned If You Do | A Needlecraft Mystery | Monica Ferris

Darned If You Do

Product Description

Series: A Needlecraft Mystery (Book 18)
Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: Berkley (February 2, 2016)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0425270114
ISBN-13: 978-0425270110


Customer Reviews

Other Editions

Kindle Edition (What's Kindle?)
Audio CD

After a tree falls on Tom Riordan’s house, landing him in the hospital, the police discover a mountain of junk piled high in his home. Locals in Excelsior, Minnesota—including Betsy Devonshire and her Crewel World Monday Bunch—offer to help with the cleanup while Tom recuperates. 

But when Tom is found murdered in his hospital bed, the sole heir to his property—his cousin Valentina—becomes the number one suspect. Betsy believes there’s more to the case than meets the eye, but finding clues to the killer’s identity in the clutter Tom left behind will be like looking for a needle in a haystack…

A Finely Knit Murder | Seaside Knitters Mystery Series | Sally Goldenbaum

A Finely Knit Murder | Seaside Knitters Mystery Series | Sally Goldenbaum

Product Description

Series: Seaside Knitters Mystery (Book 9)
Paperback: 336 pages
Publisher: NAL (May 3, 2016)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 045147161X
ISBN-13: 978-0451471611


Customer Reviews

Other Editions

Kindle Edition (What's Kindle?)

Seaside Knitter Birdie Favazza is thrilled that her granddaughter Gabby will be visiting for the fall and attending the Sea Harbor Community Day School. Gabby loves the school, with its newly-adopted progressive curriculum, and she loves that the Seaside Knitters are teaching knitting as part of the enrichment program. It’s a huge success, and on crisp autumn days, girls camp out on the terraces, knitting up hats for charity.

But not everyone is happy with the direction the school is taking. Outspoken board member Blythe Westerland has sparked tempers with her determination to unravel the current administration. Then, on the evening of an elegant school event, Blythe’s body is found near the school boathouse.

With a killer on the loose, Birdie is determined to keep Gabby safe. Working together, the Seaside Knitters carefully unravel the layers of Blythe’s complicated life, bringing faculty members and town residents under scrutiny. Before the cast-off rows are made on the students’ projects, the knitters will need to stitch together the evidence to see if a murderer has been walking beside them all along.

The Postman Always Purls Twice | Black Sheep Knitting Mystery Series | Anne Canadeo

The Postman Always Purls Twice | Black Sheep Knitting Mystery Series | Anne Canadeo

Product Description

Series: A Black Sheep Knitting Mystery (Book 7)
Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Gallery Books (April 28, 2015)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1476767491
ISBN-13: 978-1476767499


Customer Reviews

Other Editions

Kindle Edition

When the cast and crew of a Hollywood movie arrive to film on location in quiet Plum Harbor, the village is aflutter at the A-list actresses. The Knitters are dazzled by the glamour and since Maggie’s shop is an important set, they are privy to the backstage excitement and inside gossip. But from the first day of filming, accidents and menacing coincidences abound. The show must go on, but no sooner have the lights, action, and stitching begun when the killer strikes again—this time, cutting one character from the script for good.

Bahia Shrimp Recipe

A tasty Brazilian inspired dish from the city of Bahia. It's a kind of shrimp curry, with a sauce made from onions, coconut milk, peanuts, cashews, and thickened with breadcrumbs. Other ingredients also include dried shrimp, which give it a much stronger flavor, and palm oil, which gives the dish its beautiful yellow/orange color, but we have made this simpler using frozen shrimp (you can use fresh).  A food processor also comes in handy to grind the nuts, rather than trying to chop them.

Serves:  4
Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes



10 oz torn pieces of white bread
4 oz coconut milk
4 oz  roasted, salted peanuts
6 oz roasted, salted cashews
1 pint water or fish stock
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 lime
1 pound of frozen shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 large onion, chopped
1 red chili pepper, roughly chopped with seeds removed
1 clove garlic
3 tablespoons palm oil, or vegetable oil
Salt and pepper to taste



Soak the bread pieces with the coconut milk for 10 minutes. Place them in the blender (with the coconut milk) and blend until smooth. Set aside.

Grind the peanuts and the cashews in a food processor until finely ground. Set aside.

Bring fish stock or water to a boil. Season with salt and pepper, and add the garlic and juice of one lime. Add the shrimp and boil until pink, about 5 minutes. Remove the shrimp and set aside. Reserve cooking liquid.

In the same food processor, add the onion, chili pepper, and garlic, and process until finely chopped.

Heat the palm oil (or vegetable oil) in a skillet, and sauté onion mixture for about 5 minutes, until soft and golden.

Add the ground nuts to the skillet and sauté a few minutes more, adding a little oil if necessary, until golden.

Add the bread crumb and coconut milk mixture and 1½ cups of the shrimp cooking liquid to the skillet. Cook, stirring, until sauce has thickens, about 5 minutes, adding more liquid if necessary.

Add shrimp to sauce and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Serve warm, over rice.

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