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It’s the time of year where everyone’s on a ‘get healthy’ mission after weeks of indulgence over the festive period. Want to keep to your healthy new lifestyle? Of course you do! The key to sticking to a healthier diet is making sure that you don’t get bored of what you’re eating. Why not spruce up your wellness regime with these easy to make guilt free snacks?To help you keep motivated, we’re giving you 10%* off the Total Control Hand Blender Work Centre, the Sauté and Soup Maker and the Easy Blend Deluxe. Simply add the code BLOG10 to the voucher box for the discount to be applied. Hurry! Offer ends 31st January.
Swap the unhealthy dips and spreads for deliciously nutritious hummus. Super quick and easy to make, hummus always tastes better when it’s homemade. So break out the Total Control Hand Blender Work Centre and let’s get cracking!
- 400g chickpeas
- 1 garlic clove
- 2 lemons
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 ¼ tsp ground cumin
- 75ml Tahini paste
- Pinch of a salt
- Pinch of fresh coriander
- Cayenne pepper (to serve)
- Peel the clove of garlic and chop in half
- Cut the lemons in half. Using a juicer, squeeze all the juices out of the lemon. For a more zesty flavour, try adding the juice of another lemon
- Fit the chopping blade into the bowl of the Total Control Hand Blender Work Centre
- Place all of the ingredients (except the liquid from the tin of chickpeas) into the bowl. Make sure you keep the chickpea liquid aside for later
- Attach the lid to the bowl and then fasten the main unit to the lid
- On speed 7, blend in short bursts. Stop every so often and scrape the sides of the bowl with a plastic spatula
- In a separate bowl, mix together the juice from the final lemon with the chickpea juice
- Add small amounts of this juice at a time to suit personal taste
- Once all mixed together, season to your taste before serving in a bowl. Top tip: why not add some fresh coriander and a sprinkle of cayenne pepper for decoration?
Spice up your snack time regime with this Middle Eastern classic. Grab the Total Control Hand Blender Work Centre for a fast, low-carb, snack.
- 400g chickpeas
- 1 red onion
- 1 garlic clove
- 30g fresh parsley
- 2 tsp cumin
- 2 tsp harissa paste
- 1 ½ tbsp plain flour
- Pinch of salt
- 1-2 tbsp sunflower oil
- Drain and rinse the canned chickpeas before patting them dry with kitchen paper
- Peel and dice the red onion
- Peel the clove of garlic and cut in half
- Remove the stalks from the fresh parsley
- Fit the chopping blade into the bowl
- Add the chickpeas, onion, garlic, parsley, cumin, harissa page, flour and salt into the bowl
- Fit the lid and the main unit to the bowl
- Blend the ingredients using the Precision Control Trigger on speed 7, blending in short bursts for around 40 seconds until fairly smooth
- Shape the blended mixture into four patties
- Place the patties onto a plate, cover with cling film and refrigerate until needed
- Once ready to use , heat the sunflower oil in a non-stick frying pan
- When the sunflower oil is hot, carefully add the patties and gently fry for around three minutes on each side until golden
Enjoying one of your five a day has never been easier. This deliciously healthy smoothie will soon be one of your snack time favourites; it’s already one of ours! Ready in just four simple steps, this is just one of the many recipes that you can create in your Sauté and Soup Maker.
- 300g raspberries
- 900ml low fat raspberry yoghurt
- 300ml semi skimmed milk
- Place all of the ingredients into the jug and stir thoroughly
- Place the lid on the jug
- Using the ‘mode’ button, select the ‘juice’ setting and wait for two minutes until the Sauté and Soup Maker has finished
- The Sauté and Soup Maker will beep to indicate when the smoothie is ready. Pour into a cold glass and enjoy. Chill the remainder for the rest or the week or pop in the freezer for a longer storage life.
For more quick and easy snack recipes, why not download our new Cook ‘n Create app? You can download it from iTunes or Google Play.
*Voucher Terms and Conditions
- The BLOG10 voucher is only available by using the voucher against online transactions for the products featured on this page on www.morphyrichards.co.uk, including standard UK delivery.
- The voucher do not include 24 hour delivery
- The voucher cannot be used in conjunction with any other voucher offered on www.morphyrichards.co.uk
- Vouchers cannot be exchanged for the monetary equivalent.
- Using the voucher does not affect your statutory rights.
- Discounts cannot be applied retrospectively (i.e. after buying).
- This voucher expires on 31st January 2016
- All offers are subject to product availability.
- The voucher cannot be re-published or shared on any other website.
- The voucher are offered by Morphy Richards Limited: Mexborough, South Yorkshire, S64 8AJ
It’s the most important meal of the year so what better excuse to brush up on your kitchen skills than preparing Christmas Dinner? If you want your guests to be wowed with a perfect plate worthy of being shared on Facebook (piled high as it might be!) then mastering your chopping skills is a great place to start. It can also help you save valuable time in the kitchen which is handy when there are so many dishes to prepare! Read on for top tips on creating perfect carrot batons and speedy onion dicing.
If you fancy upping your chopping game this Christmas but aren’t feeling up to perfecting your knife handling skills just yet, you can always start by using a multi-functional kitchen tool to speed up the chopping process and guarantee great results. The Total Control Hand Blender Workcentre features both coarse and fine grating and slicing disks as well as a chopping blade, making light work of preparing all kinds of vegetables, whether you’re slicing potatoes for a creamy dauphinoise or grating fruit for a festive fruit cake. You can find plenty of recipe ideas for the Total Control Hand Blender Workcentre on the Morphy Cook & Create App, available on iTunes or Google Play.
Before you get started preparing the veggies for your Christmas feast, it’s important to make sure you’ve got the right tools for the job. Always use a high density plastic or wooden chopping board; never chop on glass as it can blunt your knife. Choosing the right knife is also key. For most vegetables a sharp 5” or 6” chef’s knife is ideal, as the curved front edge allows you to rock the knife up and down smoothly when chopping.
2. The rolling chop
The rolling chop takes time to perfect, but once mastered is a great technique for chopping consistently and quickly. To start, grasp the chef’s knife like you were shaking hands with it, using your strongest hand. Your index finger should be placed near the top and side of the knife to keep it steady, rather than towards the bottom of the handle. Keep the tip of the knife down on the board and use chopping motions that go forward and down at the same time instead of straight up and down. The idea is to roll the knife through the food, keeping the tip touching the board.
3. The claw
With your other hand, form a claw over the vegetable you’re chopping, rather than holding it with your fingers out. The knuckle at the end of your middle finger should be closest to the knife’s blade and will form a barrier between the knife and your fingertips meaning you’re much less likely to cut yourself. Although it might feel safer to hold your hand away from the knife, this gives you much less control over the vegetables, and by maintaining contact between your knuckle and the knife, you’ll be able to feel where it is without even looking.
4. Getting on with onions
Knowing how to dice an onion is a great thing to have mastered, as so many recipes call for using finely diced onion as a base ingredient. To begin, peel off the top layers of skin and chop off the top of the onion. Leave the root intact, then cut the onion in half lengthways. Lie the onion flat with the cut side down, then make evenly spaced cuts long the length of the onion without cutting all the way to the root. Next make one or two horizontal cuts through the body of the onion depending on how finely you need it dicing. Finally, cut straight down through the onion across your original slices, using the claw and the rolling chop technique. As you get towards the bottom, simply flip it on its side and keep chopping until you reach the root.
5. Perfect batons
The key to getting perfectly even, square-cut batons is to get rid of any round edges before cutting up all your individual batons. Start by cutting off the top and bottom of the carrot, then cut lengthways down one of the sides in a straight line. Turn the carrot onto the next side, then trim along the next length. Repeat until all the edges are trimmed and you’re left with an evenly cut rectangle of carrot. Cut this carrot block in half, then into as many pieces as you like, depending on how thick you want the batons to be.
Winter Vegetable Soup
Based on our Basic Vegetables Soup recipe from the Cook & Create App this soup can be adapted to use all your favourite seasonal vegetables; from sprouts to red cabbage or carrots and parsnips, mix and match your favourite veggies to create your very own festive flavour combinations.
- 700g assorted vegetables, diced
- Water (to MAX mark)
- 2 chicken or vegetable stock cubes
- Salt and ground black pepper
- Fill the Soup and Smoothie Maker past the MIN mark with your selection of diced vegetables.
- Add the vegetable or chicken stock cubes and fill to the MAX mark with water.
- Select the smooth setting. Once the soup is ready, season to taste and serve. Try serving with toasted rosemary croutons for an even tastier treat.
This quick and easy recipe from the Cook & Create App makes a tasty, hearty soup that’s perfect for this time of year. This is also a great way to use ham hock leftovers!Ingredients:
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 600g peas
- Fresh mint 20g
- 225g ham, roughly chopped or shredded
- 100g potato, peeled and diced
- 1 ham stock cube
- 800ml boiling water
- 75ml crème fraiche
- Salt and ground black pepper
- Make the ham stock by adding the stock cube to the boiling water. Stir well.
- Place the peas, mint, shredded ham, diced potato and hot stock liquid into the Soup and Smoothie Maker and select the smooth setting.
- When the soup is ready, season to taste and add the olive oil and the crème fraiche to the jug, re-attach the lid and use the ‘Mode’ button to select the ‘Blend’ setting.
- Press and hold the ‘Select On/Off’ button to blend the soup for 20 seconds before serving. Easy!
Roasted Parsnip and Bacon Soup
What could be better than a tasty parsnip soup on a cold winter’s day? Parsnip and bacon soup! Topped with crispy bacon, this indulgent soup is a tasty twist on a Christmas classic.
- 5 – 6 medium parsnips, peeled and cut into cubes
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 4 strips bacon
- 4 large shallots, peeled and sliced
- 1 tbsp butter
- 700ml vegetable stock
- 6 bay leaves
- 470ml water
- 60ml white wine
- 1 – 2 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper
- Roast the parsnips at 200 degrees C for 25 to 30 minutes until golden brown, turning them once during cooking.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Meanwhile, in a large pan cook the bacon strips until crisp.
- Remove the bacon and set aside, reserving 2tbsp of bacon fat in the pan.
- Add the butter and shallots and sauté until the shallots are golden brown. Reserve 2tbsp of the cooked shallots to use as a garnish.
- Cut the bacon into thin strips then add some of the bacon to the shallot garnish mix.
- Add the cooked parsnips into the pan with the leftover bacon fat. Add the bacon, stock and bay leaves and leave to simmer for 20mins.
- Once cooked, remove the bay leaves then blend using the Total Control Hand Blender at speed 4, adding the wine and water as required until the soup has reached the desired consistency.
- Season with salt and pepper then serve topped with the shallots and bacon mixture. Delicious!
If you’re inspired to get cooking, there are a variety of inspirational recipes available on our Cook & Create App. You can download it from iTunes or Google Play. For more food inspiration keep an eye on our Facebook page for Christmas day cooking tips from My Virgin Kitchen’s Barry Lewis. He’ll be sharing four ideas on recipes you can make ahead to help the big day go smoothly!
1. Fail to prepare, prepare to fail
Whatever type of cake you’re decorating, most of the things that go wrong boil down to a lack of preparation. If you haven’t left enough time to decorate your creation you’ll end up rushing or attempting to decorate a cake that’s still warm. It’s important to leave enough time to allow your cakes to cool completely before you start to apply any icing or it will just melt off.
How you handle the sponges as soon as they come out of the oven is also key. For a layer cake, it’s crucial to leave the individual layers upside down to cool. This will help flatten them out and make the final cake much easier to assemble. With cupcakes, it’s important to take them out of the tin to cool so they don’t become misshapen.
2. Icing a layer cake
Still on the theme of preparation, when tackling a layer cake a few simple steps at the beginning of the process can help you master getting that ‘wow’ factor. Start by putting a small dab of frosting on the cake stand underneath the first layer to stop it from sliding around. Tucking overlapping pieces of baking paper underneath the edges of the cake will keep the stand clean and can be removed when you’re all done.When it comes to assembling the layers, it’s best to use a bigger dollop of icing to spread on each layer to start with. You can always scrape some off if you’ve put too much on, whereas if you use too little you’ll end up pulling up crumbs into the icing. Make sure you spread the frosting on each of the layers just beyond the edge of the cake; this will help you when it comes to frosting around the side of the cake.
When working on the edges, it’s best to tackle the cake in quarters, turning the cake stand as you go. Just focus on getting the whole cake covered before you move onto smoothing the icing out or working in any patterns.
3. Conquer those cupcakes
To make perfectly fluffy buttercream icing to top your cupcakes, try our recipe from the Cook & Create app, and whip it to perfection using the Total Control Folding Stand Mixer . You can currently get 10% off the mixer using code TOTAL10.
Once you’ve made your icing adding it into a piping bag is an easy way to give your cupcakes a professional looking finish. When filling up your piping bag, try folding the top over a cup to give yourself a stable base to work with and make filling the bag far less messy. Experiment with different nozzles to create different effects. When piping the icing, start in the middle then loop around the edge in a circle, then finish with a swirl on top, back towards the centre.
If you’re not feeling confident enough to use a piping bag, try smoothing the butter icing on using a spatula. Measure it out equally among the cakes first using an ice cream scoop to make sure all your cupcakes end up looking the same.
If all these tips aren’t enough, look out for another video from My Virgin Kitchen’s Barry Lewis next week, when he’ll be demonstrating how to fix cake decorating disasters. And remember, if all else fails, there’s nothing a generous dusting of icing sugar can’t fix!
For more great hints and tips from the Baking Surgery, be sure to check out our Facebook page. #TogetherWellMakeIt
Bonfire Night is one of our favourite nights of the year; it's the perfect excuse to invite friends and family over for a get together to watch ‘sparks fly’ and cosy up by the fire.
However, the best bit of the night is the array of treats that go hand in hand with the occasion. From hot dogs to toffee apples and parkin, the foody traditions of 5th of November are some of the best of the year.Once again, the Morphy Richards Baking Surgery is here to help! If you're hosting a Bonfire Night party or just looking for some seasonal inspiration to add to your baking repertoire, these three recipe ideas will help your cooking skills skyrocket! Featuring tips from My Virgin Kitchen’s Barry Lewis, we’ve got plenty of ideas to inspire you from quick and easy snacks to tasty Bonfire treats. #TogetherWellMakeIt
Tomato soup – the perfect winter warmer
This hearty soup with a modern twist will leave you feeling warm and fuzzy inside – perfect for watching fireworks out in the cold.
Simply download the Cook and Create app from either the App Store or from Google Play and search for Italian Tomato Soup. Then follow four simple steps to deliciously tasty tomato soup using the Morphy Richards Sauté and Soup Maker. For a more fiery taste, why not add a pinch of cayenne or some chilli flakes?
The Sauté and Soup Maker just received a review of 5/5 from the Daily Mail (yes, we like to brag) and for a limited time only you can get an extra 10% off with the voucher code TOTAL10. Perfect for kicking off your Christmas shopping!
Firework marshmallow pops
This week’s Baking Surgery winner, Lauren Woodall was looking for a quick and easy fix for her sugar craving and it didn’t quite go to plan. Morphy Richards have come to the rescue with the perfect sweet treat solution from our brand ambassador, Barry Lewis of My Virgin Kitchen, to make sure preparing for your Bonfire Night as easy as possible!
These firework marshmallow pops will go down a treat with kids…and the big kids (we’re looking at you parents!). Follow these quick and easy steps for a real taste explosion.Ingredients:
- 1 bag of marshmallows
- Approx. 200g of milk chocolate/ baking chocolate
- Sprinkles / hundreds & thousands
- 1 packet of popping candy/ pop rocks
- Bamboo skewers
- Break up the chocolate into small chunks, melt in a bowl over simmering water until smooth. Top tip: if you have impatient kids that want to eat their creation straight away, use good quality baking chocolate as it sets quicker than regular milk chocolate.
- While you’re waiting for your chocolate to melt, push the skewers into the marshmallows (we’d suggest one marshmallow per skewer) and mix your sprinkles and popping candy in a bowl.
- Once your chocolate is completely melted dunk your marshmallow skewers so that they’re completely coated in chocolate.
- Roll the chocolate marshmallows in the sprinkles mixture to coat and then return to the baking tray.
- Place them in the fridge for about 15 minutes so that your chocolate can set, then tuck right in and enjoy!
Yet another bonfire night classic with a twist…baked potato hot dogs
What keeps you warm on a cold winter’s night when you’re stood around a bonfire…? Hot dogs of course!
This year, why not change it up and swap the bread buns for baked potatoes? This great recipe from Barry Lewis, really will blow your mind! It’s so easy to make and will go down a treat with the family. Get the full recipe by watching the video here.
We know you can feel a little apprehensive at the thought of making your own bread. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need a bread maker to achieve great results. No one can deny how scrumptious a homemade loaf fresh out of the oven can really be and all you need is a bit of time on your hands.
Once again, the Morphy Richards Baking Surgery is at your service! We’ve collaborated with our brand ambassador Barry Lewis from My Virgin Kitchen to bring you some essential tips for bread making. Step outside of your comfort zone and release the Paul Hollywood within!Get more baking hints and tips from our Barry Lewis at the Baking Surgery page. #TogetherWellMakeIt
1. Swap your store bought yeast for something closer to home:
Try making a homemade starter, an alternative to store bought yeast, for a very traditional loaf – this is how our ancestors used to make bread after all. The store bought yeast will struggle to achieve the same level of taste, consistency and flavour. Sound complicated? We promise it’s not! All you need to do is mix an equal weight of flour and water together, place in a large jar and leave to sit for a few days. With a bit of patience you can make some legendary homemade bread.
2. Easy on the flour:
To ensure the perfect dough consistency, you have to be careful with the amount of flour you use. If it won’t shape into a ball, it’s probably too dry, so add a drop of water to moisten it up! The mixture should be sticky and firm so that when you come to knead it, it bonds together well and doesn’t separate during baking.
We know it’s hard to resist the temptation of adding more flour during kneading, especially when you’re a newbie bread maker and you’re not sure how the dough should look. Barry suggests using small quantities of olive oil, melted butter or even water when proving the dough. Adjusting the quantities of flour can have a huge effect on the outcome. This is where we think this week’s Baking Surgery competition winner, Ruby Grawe, may have gone wrong (sorry Ruby!).
3. A dough hook is all you ‘knead’:
Kneading is one of the most important processes in bread making; it aids the development of gluten (a type of protein) which ensures springy and elastic dough. Traditional hands-on kneading can be tiring, especially if you’ve missed a few sessions at the gym and your arm strength is lacking! Once your ingredients are mixed together, attach the dough hook on the Total Control Stand Mixer, select the pre-programmed bread dough setting and let the machine do the work. The dough is ready for proving when it’s beautifully smooth and slightly tacky to touch.
4. Give the dough plenty of time to prove:
Proving allows the bread to rise and this requires patience; it’s a good time for shopping or catching up with a friend over a coffee! Before you wander off, ensure your dough is in a large mixing bowl to allow plenty of room to rise and cover with cling film or a damp tea towel. Find a cosy spot in your house, where there’s no draught, and allow the dough to rise for at least an hour - the recipe should state proving times so follow these. Ideally, the dough should have doubled in size.
Once you’ve mastered baking your favourite loaf, why not challenge yourself and try making a homemade pizza or a traditional Italian Focaccia?
If you're not quite ready to go it alone, why not try one of our breadmakers for all the home-baked goodness in a fraction of the time?
For more advice from the Baking Surgery, be sure to check out our Facebook page. #TogetherWellMakeIt
Baking isn’t always the easiest thing to crack; all it takes is one little error and before you know it you’ve got a baking disaster on your hands! Don’t worry, the Morphy Richards Baking Surgery is here to help. We’ve pulled together some handy hints and tips to help you steer clear of some of the most common – and most easily avoided – baking blunders and be the organised, confident baker we know you can be!
Get more baking hints and tips from our brand ambassador and super vlogger Barry Lewis of My Virgin Kitchen at the Baking Surgery page. #TogetherWellMakeIt
1. Never underestimate the importance of lining your tins:
Although greasing the inside of the cake tin isn’t the most glamourous job, it helps to ensure you get smooth edges and is definitely worth the effort to avoid a broken cake. We’re sure this week’s Baking Surgery competition winner, Emily Coleman, wishes she’d greased her cake tins before baking them!
All you need to do is scoop some butter onto a clean piece of kitchen roll and wipe your tin for a quick and easy greasing solution – don’t forget to get into the edges! If you prefer to work with grease proof paper, add a little bit of butter to the cake tin first to stop the paper from moving when you pour in the mixture. Easy!
2. Avoid the dreaded ‘raw middle & burnt edges’ combination with this foil trick:
Sometimes the oven is not your friend, and that moment when the thick mixture transforms into a lovely, even brown cake comes far earlier than anticipated…before the middle of the cake has had time to catch up! Don’t worry though, the edges may be burning and the cake may still be raw in the middle, but it’s not too late to save it. To rescue your cake, simply cover it with a tight layer of tin foil to trap the heat and turn the temperature down by 10 degrees for the remainder of the baking time.
3. Prepare ahead of time to avoid a last-minute shopping trip:
When the pressure of producing the perfect dinner party dessert is mounting, it’s easy to accidentally forget a crucial ingredient (let’s be honest, we’ve all done it at some point!). Avoid the panic next time by planning ahead and being prepared. Before you start to bake, measure out and organise all of the ingredients in separate bowls and make sure you have everything you need for the entire recipe. If you’re missing anything, you still have time to run to the shop to get the crucial ingredient before you start to bake!
While you’re organising your ingredients, make sure you have all of the tools you need for the entire recipe, including icing, fillings and sauces. If you’re using a handy multi-functional tool like the Morphy Richards Total Control Hand Blender, make sure you lay out all of the attachments you’ll need for the recipe before you start so you don’t search all of your kitchen cupboards in a panic later on! (If you haven’t already discovered the Total Control Hand Blender, you can get 10% off now with the Baking Surgery promo code).
4. Know your flours and get creative:
Is there a difference between plain and self-raising flour? YES – and using plain flour instead of self-raising is a sure-fire way to ruin a recipe! Never fear though, if you’re running out of storage space for your ever-expanding stash of baking supplies, you can cleverly use the ingredients you already have. Make your own self-raising flour by adding a small amount of baking power to plain flour (just be sure to check the baking powder isn’t out of date and stick to ½ tsp of baking powder per 100g of plain flour). Genius!
For more great hints and tips from the Baking Surgery, be sure to check out our Facebook page. #TogetherWellMakeIt
The Great British Bake Off contestants know a thing or two about the unforgiving business of baking, but if even they’re getting things wrong, we know it might feel more than a little daunting.
Fear not! Although baking is an exact science, there are some easy tips and tricks that you can learn from the GBBO fails to help you with your next batch of biscuits or lovely loaf. Our Together We’ll Make It surgery is always open and on hand to help with some of your queries and questions, so make sure you have a gander at our Facebook page.So get ready to reminisce on some famous GBBO disasters and how you can avoid them.
1. Unset desserts
A common mistake committed not only in the Bake Off tent but also at home, is not allowing yourself enough time to ensure your custards, jellies and trifles are entirely set, leaving you with a soupy consistency, similar to Dorrett’s Black Forest Gateau disaster in week one! A simple way to avoid such a catastrophe is to plan ahead – make sure you allow enough time for every element of the recipe to be entirely completed and finished before starting the next step.
Over-baking cookies and biscuits
Over-baking is a common issue, especially when it comes to baking cookies and biscuits. It’s much better for cookies to be slightly under-baked than over-baked. No one likes a hard, dry cookie that resembles cardboard! Avoid this by remaining vigilant while you bake, don’t get distracted and forget about them and always check them after the minimum cooking time has been reached.
Dough is supposed to be mixed, right? Right! But over-mixing dough over-activates the gluten in the flour and results in a thick, stringy and stodgy consistency, not ideal for a light, fluffy bread. To avoid this, try using theTotal Control Stand Mixer, which uses Smart Response Technology and six different programmed settings to ensure you achieve perfect dough every time.
4. Not preheating the oven correctly
The beginning of every recipe usually states a preheated oven temperature – don’t ignore this, but do get to know your own oven. Unfortunately GBBO contestant Marie was caught short in week 2, after she forgot to turn the oven on completely…oops! Her bake was obviously totally uncooked! Don’t let this be you, when you first embark on a recipe make sure the oven is turned on (!) and correctly preheated.
5. Over-beating egg whites
Mixing egg whites can be an art in itself. Over-beating your egg whites will end in complete separation. Not ideal. To avoid this, try using the Total Control Hand Blender Pro Set which offers eight different speed settings with Smart Response Technology for ultimate control and to guarantee fluffy, light egg whites.
6. Forgetting to soften the butter
It’s all in the planning. Butter needs to be softened at room temperature before creaming with sugar, otherwise the ultimate creamy consistency won’t be achieved. If you forget to pre-soften the butter then either of these simple tips will help you. Option one: chop the butter into smaller chunks and rest by a warm oven. Option two: put the butter in a plastic bag and bash with a rolling pin until it becomes soft.
After remembering these famous errors, you may be less likely to make your own baking mistakes. Why not share your perfect bakes or unfortunate mistakes on Facebook and Twitter during the next live episode of GBBO? You could even be in with the chance of winning an innovative product from the Total Control range to help you on your way.
We’ve all been there when a batch of cookies comes out of the oven looking like charcoal, but somehow tastes raw on the inside (how can it be?).
We’re here to help. We’re here to let you know that you are not alone and it is worth persevering, we promise. You can enjoy delicious baked treats without breaking a sweat.
Welcome to the Together We’ll Make It Surgery.
Over the next few months, as the nation determinedly dons their oven mitts and salivates over the creations on Great British Bake Off, we’ll be firmly by your side to help you improve your baking brilliance. We’re working with our new ambassador Barry Lewis, of My Virgin Kitchen to show you how, with a range of Morphy Richards products, including the state-of-the-art range of Total Control food preparation range and a little bit of confidence; you can reign supreme in the kitchen.
Barry will be on hand to show you how to avoid the common mistakes which befall us hapless and hungry cooks and give tips on how to slowly build confidence in the kitchen.
What’s more, we’ll be giving away a product from the Total Control food preparation range every week to help you on your way. What more could you wish for?
Entering the competition couldn’t be easier; all you need to do is upload a picture, video or question relating to one of your baking fails to Facebook and we’ll work with Barry to select the cook most in need of help. Don’t worry, those wonky ladybird cupcakes and burnt buns will be a thing of the past – together we’ll make it!
Get your baking apron ready as we’ve compiled a list of top hints and tips that can help even the most inexperienced cook rival Mary and Paul.These handy hints will help you on your way to becoming a star baker!
- In week one of GBBO, the contestants were put through their paces by having to recreate Mary’s Walnut Cake. The BIG problem was the shiny, boiled icing on top of it, which defeated many of the aspiring bakers whose attempts were “grainy”. To avoid this, make sure your icing is perfectly light and marshmellowy by using the whisk function of the Total Control Hand Blender Workcentre, which builds speed gradually to ensure that exactly the right amount of power is used to prevent sudden jerks and splatters while blending.
- When using ingredients like nuts, it’s important to ensure that they’re never too fine or coarse- we’re looking at you, Ian. Try using the chopping function of your Total Control Hand Blender Workcentre for perfectly chopped walnuts.
- Impressed by Paul Jagger’s Cecil the Lion bread on GBBO last week? More of a basic bread baker than a daring dough devil? Keep it simple and classy with the Total Control Plastic Stand Mixer for effortless bread every time. Making the perfect loaf has never been easier! The Total Control Plastic Stand Mixer delivers the right amount of power at the right time, ensuring that your dough will always be knock-out!
- If presentation isn’t your strong-point, you can still create beautiful cakes by simply sieving icing sugar through a doyly. The sugar will settle on your cake in a stunning pattern, tricking everyone into thinking that you have slaved over the decoration for hours. Perfect if you are running short of time- it’s just a shame Nadiya didn’t know this trick to spruce up her biscuit box at the last minute.
- If you don’t happen to have a piping bag on hand, you can create one using a humble sandwich bag- not as fancy, but a great cost-effective alternative. Simply add your icing to the bag, twist the top end of the bag, cut off one of the bottom corners and use as normal.
- Filling your piping bag can be a messy job, why not try folding the top of the bag over a cup to give yourself a stable base and an extra hand to help for an easier filling process?
- These hints and tips will help you on your way to creating a 'show stopper', so relax and have fun with your baking!
Once you’ve tried an Auto Clean Power Steam Elite, chances are, you’ll never look back. Ironing disasters are a thing of the past, and we’ve figured out the top five reasons why the Auto Clean Power Steam Elite is the undisputed king of the ironing world.
- You’ve said goodbye to that awkward moment when you spend more time de-scaling your iron rather than getting ready…and you realise it’s time to say hello to the Power Steam Elite’s auto-clean function, which automatically flushes out lime scale. The auto-clean function doesn’t slow you down while you’re ironing, as it all takes place while the Auto Clean Power Steam Elite is heating up – genius!
- You never worry about getting marks on your clothes again (which, let’s face it, always happens right before you’re about to wear something), because the auto-clean function is back in action, banishing lime scale for good.
- You’ll no longer be filled with dread when you’re about to tackle an ironing pile that’s taller than Everest. With the Auto Clean Power Steam Elite’s massive 6.5 bar pressure you’ll sail through your ironing in no time at all; leaving you with more time to do the things you love!
- Ironing a duvet cover no longer takes an age! With 170g of pressurised instant steam the Auto Clean Power Steam Elite glides through multiple layers and tough fabrics with ease.
- Save time by not having to constantly refill the tank.The Auto Clean Power Steam Elite’s 2.2 litre capacity means it keeps going for even longer.
We might be biased (we’re not, we promise), but it’s pretty clear that the Auto Clean Power Steam Elite is the answer to all of your ironing woes, thanks to its powerful 170g of pressurised steam, 300g steam boost, and of course, the incredible auto clean function.Which of the Auto Clean Power Steam Elite’s features save you the most time? Let us know on our Facebook and Twitter channels – you may even pick up a few more tips yourself!
The bread crumbs are on the floor, ready to be cleaned up, both the SuperVac and the dustpan and brush looking determined to succeed. Could the old fashioned dustpan really beat the super lightweight, upright cordless vacuum cleaner?
Man got off to a slow start bending down and shuffling on his knees while he started to sweep up the crumbs. With no need to bend down and no cord to plug in, SuperVac got off to a flying start – vacuuming up the crumbs in the middle of the floor with ease.
Almost half way through and it was starting to look like fair game until the SuperVac pulled out its hidden power – the handheld setting. While man was struggling to sweep up the crumbs from the corner of the kitchen, the SuperVac’s handheld setting got into the awkward corners in no time – cleaning up the crumbs in a flash. With enough battery power still left to clean the whole house, the SuperVac set to work at what it does best…cleaning!
And there you have it folks– in the battle of Man vs Morphy, Morphy has won again.
We have a veritable melting pot of delightful contestants this year from Mat, the 37 year old fire fighter; a man of simple desires who’s main aspiration is to own a dishwasher; to 53 year old Dorret, an accountant and self-confessed foodie.
Also trying to impress Mary and Paul this autumn is Alvin, 37, who reportedly baked bread every day for three weeks until he got it just right; 41 year old travel photographer (and personal photographer to the Dali Lama no less!), Ian, and Flora, who, at 19 is the youngest of this year’s bakers and whose nearest shop at home is a mere 20 miles away.
Tonight sees the dozen aspiring bakers embrace cake week. The show will kick off with each of the contestants tackling a Madeira cake and will move on to see them give Mary’s own frosted walnut cake a go in the technical challenge (let’s hope there is not a soggy bottom in sight).
Our first instalment of the deliciously addictive show will finish off with a round of show-stopping black forest gateau reinventions. If your mouth is positively watering at the prospect, how about whipping up your own baked treat? All you need are a few simple ingredients and your Total Control Control Hand Blender Workcentre, which uses smart technology to give you the confidence you need in the kitchen.
NB. You need a 2lb loaf tin or 15-18cm round deep cake tin
170g Self raising flour
170g caster sugar
110g butter, softened, cut into cubes
Zest of one lemon
2 medium eggs
4 tbsp. semi skimmed milk
1-2 thin pieces of candied citron or lemon peel, to decorate
1. Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 4, fan oven 160°C. Line the tin with greaseproof paper.
2. Fit the chopping blade into the bowl of your Total Control Blender Workcentre
3. Place the flour, sugar, margarine and lemon zest into the bowl.
4. Break in the eggs and add the milk.
5. Fit the work centre lid, main unit and select speed 7 on the Variable Speed Control. Using the Precise Control Trigger mix the ingredients together for a few seconds. Scrape the bowl down with a spatula and process again for a few seconds until all the ingredients are combined.
6. Place the mixture into the prepared tin.
7. Bake in the centre of the oven for about an hour. You may need to cover the cake to prevent it becoming too brown after about half an hour.
8. To serve, decorate the cake with the candied peel.
Once you have made a tent-worthy concoction, share your tips and tricks with other inexperienced cooks on our Facebook and Twitter channels – together we’ll make it ;)
If you don’t know your cardamom pod from your vanilla pod, or you’re confused between your garlic and your garam masala, then turn to this handy little guide before you next reach for the spice rack and we’ll see you right.
First off, don’t feel the need to use all the spices at your disposal; it can be easy to slip into the trap of thinking that the more flavours you add to a dish, the better it will taste, but this isn’t the case.
Choose a few select spices which complement the food and use them relatively sparingly. If in doubt, garlic is usually a good option for a taste sensation, without being too overpowering. You also can’t go wrong if you fling a bit of salt and black pepper into your dish.
Different cuisines have different recognisable flavours – lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves provide an iconic Thai flavour, whereas cardamom and cumin are often used in Indian curries. Rosemary is popular in Mediterranean cooking, along with thyme and oregano.
Make sure all of your seasoning is stored in dry, sealed containers in order to maintain the flavour and keep them fresher for longer – otherwise you could find yourself throwing spoonfuls into your cooking without noticing a difference.
Don’t know where to start? How about with this easy to make Italian Matriciana pasta sauce, using your Total Control Hand Blender Workcentre? See how the addition of garlic, chilli and black pepper create a fusion of flavour to a simple recipe.
- 1 onion (130g) finely chopped
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- ½ green chilli, de-seeded and finely chopped
- 1½ tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 100g bacon, rind removed and chopped
- 400g can plum tomatoes
- 100ml (120g) passata
- 2 tbsp white wine
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Fresh boiled pasta to serve
- Parmesan cheese to serve
- Place the oil in a large saucepan (do not use non-stick), and heat for a few minutes.
- Gently fry the onion, garlic and chilli for 2- 3 minutes without browning, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon.
- Add the chopped bacon to the pan and fry for a further minute. Place the lid on the pan and cook over a medium heat for 5 minutes.
- Add the plum tomatoes, passata and wine, season with a little salt and pepper to taste.
- Place the lid on the pan and simmer gently for 25 minutes, or until the onions are tender.
- Ten minutes before the sauce is ready, cook the pasta according to the pack instructions.
- Use the Blending Leg at speed 4 on the Variable Speed Control to make a smooth sauce. This can be done in the pan as long as the pan does not have a non-stick coating. Start the hand blender using the Precise Control Trigger, gently moving it across the pan until the desired consistency is achieved. For a smooth sauce, this should take about a minute.
- Drain the pasta then stir the sauce through it. Heat through if necessary then serve immediately with Parmesan cheese.
According to the holiday provider, Club Med, us holiday makers spend an average of 30 hours spread over five weeks preparing for their fun in the sun. You can’t really blame us can you? Part of the excitement of going on holiday is the anticipation!
But there’s so much to think about; where to go when you’re there, what clothes to take, how much money do you need to take, who’s going to look after the dogs? The list goes on and on...
But never fear, as always – Morphy Richards is here!
All it takes is a little bit of careful organisation to make sure your holiday sets sail smoothly. From preparing your holiday wardrobe to spring cleaning your home ready for your return, we’ve created a list of the top five things to do around your home before you go.
1. Start your packing early. Don’t leave it until the last minute. Plan what you need to take with you and start by laying everything out on your bedroom floor or spare bed before packing it into your suitcase.
2. Prepare your clothes. The last thing you want to do on your holiday is ironing, after all – you can’t take your Power Steam Elite with you! With ultimate steam power which eases through creases, the Power Steam Elite allows you to sail through your ironing quickly, keeping your holiday prep time to a minimum, and then all that’s left to do is hang your clothes up ready to be worn. Why not do a little bit of extra ironing so that when you come back you have clothes ironed and ready for work?
3. Clean the house. You won’t want to come home to a dusty house after a lovely, relaxing holiday. Before you go have a quick whizz around your home with your SuperVac 2-in-1 Cordless Vacuum Cleaner, then all you need to do when you come home is put the kettle on and relax on the sofa.
4. Prepare for your journey to the airport. Before you leave home for the airport, make yourself a quick smoothie using your Easy Blend Juice. This prevents you from having to make a pit stop a few miles down the road.
5. Relax. You’re going on holiday!!! Don’t let the preparation get to you. Just relax and enjoy every second of your holiday.
Nothing tastes more like Wimbledon than a bowl of fresh strawberries and cream.
After two weeks of brutal matches and scorching temperatures, there’s only one question that remains. Pouring cream or whipped cream?
If you fancy whipping up your strawberry accompaniment, keep reading: We’ve created a guide on how to make the best whipped cream using your Total Control Hand Blender (402052).
150ml whipping (double) cream
Top tip: for even more flavour – why not add a teaspoon of vanilla essence?
1. Pour the cream into a large bowl (preferably a metal one if you have, if not ceramic or plastic will suffice).
2. Using your Total Control Hand Blender, fit the balloon whisk attachment and start to whip the cream on speed 7. For the first few seconds the cream will be very frothy – this is normal.
3. Continue to whisk for a few more minutes, until the cream is softly whipped.
4. Dollop on your strawberries and enjoy!
Why not share your other Wimbledon treats on Facebook and Twitter?
But there is one food that is refreshingly cool and will leave you feeling full and satisfied well into the afternoon: Gazpacho.
This fresh, Spanish classic is flavoursome, takes minimal effort to prepare and can be personalised to suit your tastes. As if you need further convincing, it’s also kind to your waistline, as it’s packed full of vitamin-rich vegetables – so no guilt required.
No matter what your expertise is in the kitchen, gazpacho only requires a handful of ingredients and a hand blender or food processor. Morphy Richards’ new Total Control Hand Blender is the perfect helping hand, as it’s powerful enough to whizz through any recipe with ease, and it’s versatile to suit your food preparation needs.
To get you started, why not have a go at this simple gazpacho recipe to try at home?
- 1 slice country-style bread, about 1" thick, crusts removed
- 2 small cucumbers, peeled, seeded, and chopped
- 2 lb. very ripe tomatoes, seeded and coarsely chopped
- 1 clove garlic, peeled and chopped
- 2 tbsp. sherry vinegar
- 1⁄2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- Soak bread for 1⁄2 hour in a small bowl in water to cover. Squeeze out moisture with your hands.
- Purée bread, cucumbers, tomatoes, garlic, vinegar, olive oil, and 1 cup water in a food processor until very smooth.
- Push purée through a coarse sieve with the back of a wooden spoon. Gazpacho should be fairly thin. Season to taste with salt.
- Chill gazpacho in refrigerator for at least 2 hours. Adjust seasoning. Serve in individual glasses, or in soup bowls with garnishes on the side.
Introducing… pearl barley, a delicious and wallet-friendly superfood that’s ram packed with nutritional goodness. Highly popular in Japan, pearl barley is barley that has had its shell and all of its bran removed, making it easier to cook and less chewy than other barley.
Most commonly known for plumping up soups and filling out stews, its talent for bulking up salads is often overlooked. But never fear, we’re here – with three deliciously healthy salad recipes all featuring this oft-underestimated food.
Top tip: For even more flavour, why not try tossing your Pearl Barley in some fresh lemon or orange juice?
Sweet potato and pearl barley salad
• 2 medium sized sweet potatoes
• 175g pearl barley
• 1 large bag of green beans
• ½ onion, finely chopped
• 1 clove of crushed garlic
• ½ red chilli, de-seeded and finely chopped
• 1 sprig of fresh rosemary
• 1tbsp balsamic vinegar
• 1tbsp olive oil
• 1tsp wholegrain mustard
• 2tsp honey
1. Slice the sweet potatoes into thick slices place in a pan of water and boil for 5-8 minutes until just cooked and slightly crunchy.
2. Add the beans for the last 2-3 minutes.
3. Drain the water and allow to cool. Once cooled, peel the skins off the sweet potato and cut into chunks.
4. In a large pan, fry the onion, garlic, chilli and rosemary for about 5 minutes or until soft.
5. Once the onion, garlic, chilli and rosemary has cooled, add them to a jug with the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, wholegrain mustard and honey to create the dressing.
6. Add the barley to a pan of boiling water. Allow to simmer, uncovered, for 25-30 minutes or until tender.
7. Allow to cool.
8. In a large bowl, add the beans and sweet potato to the barley.
9. Whisk the dressing ingredients together and pour over.
10. Chill until ready to serve.
Apple, pomegranate, pine nuts and pearl barley salad
• 800g pearl barley
• 57g pine nuts
• 1 small onion, finely chopped
• Salt and freshly ground pepper
• 1 large apple, cut into thin pieces
• 75g pomegranate seeds
• 30g chopped parsley
• 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil
• 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1. Add the pearl barley to a pan of boiling water and allow to simmer, uncovered, for 25-30 minutes or until tender.
2. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Spread the pine nuts on to a baking tray and toast for 5 minutes or until golden. Allow to cool.
3. In a bowl, whisk the oil, vinegar and onion with salt and pepper. Add the pearl barley, pine nuts, apple, pomegranate seeds and parsley; toss before serving.
Kale, pearl barley and feta salad
• 1 avocado, chopped
• 100g pearl barley
• 200g chickpeas
• 270g kale
• 50g feta cheese
• 130g sunflower seeds
• 1/2 red onion, finely chopped
• 2 tbsp olive oil
• 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
• 2 tsp honey
• 1 tsp lemon juice, fresh
1. Add the pearl barley to a pan of boiling water and allow to simmer, uncovered, for 25-30 minutes or until tender.
2. Once the pearl barley has cooled, add all of the ingredients to a large bowl and mix together.
Will Stannus take his rightful place at the throne? Or will he burn his batch? Will Jon Snow face the White Walkers again? More to the point, would he go with the jam or the clotted cream first?
Daenerys might have taken off on her dragon at the end of the last episode, but what was the real hurry – and where’s she ‘scone’?
If all this excitement works up an appetite, how about hosting a themed bake off tonight? We know that we’ll certainly be indulging in our own version of Game of Scones – and can’t wait to ‘wolf’ them down!
Targaryen treats: Cheesy-fire scones
• 225g self-raising flour
• pinch of salt
• 55g butter
• 25g mature cheddar cheese, grated
• 1 tsp cayenne pepper
• 150ml milk
1. Heat the oven to 220C/425F/Gas 7. Lightly grease a baking sheet.
2. Put the flour, salt and butter into the bowl of your Morphy Richards Plastic Stand Mixer.
3. Stir in the cheese and then the milk to get a soft dough.
4. Turn on to a floured work surface and knead very lightly. Pat out to a round 2cm/¾in thick. Use a 5cm/2in cutter to stamp out rounds and place on the baking sheet.
5. Brush the tops of the scones with a little milk. Bake for 12-15 minutes until well risen and golden. Cool on a wire rack.
Stark sweets: snow inspired scones
• 2 cups all-purpose flour (plus more for hands and work surface)
• 6 tbsps granulated sugar
• 21/2 tsps baking powder
• 1/2 tsp salt
• 1 lemon (large)
• 8 tbsps unsalted butter
• 1/2 cup double cream
• 1 large egg
• 1 tsp vanilla extract
• 1 cup fresh blueberries (or frozen)
• 1 cup icing sugar (sifted)
• 3 tbsps fresh lemon juice
1. Preheat oven to 400°F (204°C). Adjust baking rack to the middle-low position. Line a large baking sheet with baking paper. Set aside.
2. In the mixing bowl of your Morphy Richards Plastic Stand Mixer, whisk 2 cups flour, the sugar, baking powder, and salt. Add the lemon zest and whisk together again. Work the butter into the mixture, until it resembles coarse meal. Set aside.
3. Next, whisk the cream, egg, and vanilla together. Drizzle it over the flour mixture and then toss the mixture together with a rubber spatula until everything appears moistened. Slowly and gently fold in the blueberries. Try your best to not overwork the dough at any point, as it will be a little wet. With floured hands, work the dough into a ball and transfer to a floured work surface. Press the dough into a neat 8″ disc and cut into equal wedges with a very sharp knife. Place the wedges onto the prepared baking sheet.
4. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until lightly golden and cooked through. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a few minutes. While the scones are cooling, whisk together the glaze ingredients until smooth. Drizzle over warm scones.
If you’ve got any tips you’d like to share with us, why not get in touch on Facebook or Twitter?
Despite it being a relatively simple recipe, it’s surprisingly easy to get iced tea wrong, and if you’ve never made it before, a bad batch could put you off ever wanting to attempt it again.
We’ve created an easy guide to go with a delicious recipe to help you achieve refreshingly good results every time. Trust us; you’ll soon be making iced tea so delicious that you’ll put grandma’s original recipe to shame.
Top tea tips:
- Top quality H2O: This is easily overlooked; the quality of your water can be the difference between a good and a bad glass of iced tea. For great tasting, filtered water why not try using one of our Brita filter kettles? You will ensure that your tea is of the highest quality and will leave no unsavoury aftertaste.
- For the coolest brew, first get hot: Using hot water is vital when brewing tea bags and particularly when adding sugar. If cold water is used, the sugar won’t dissolve and will give your beverage a grainy texture. Brew up with your Brita filter kettle for a clear consistency, which will give you an easy-sipping delight.
- Don’t over-steep: The longer you leave your tea to brew, the stronger, but also the more bitter the drink will be. Be sure to not leave it brewing for longer than stated in the recipe, and if you want a more intense flavour, simply add more tea bags or ingredients.
- Freeze the flavour: Make a batch of syrup and freeze it in an ice cube tray. This allows you to add different flavours to different teas and also means you can vary the intensity of each glass. Nifty, eh?
- The perfect serve: Always serve your iced tea in a glass rather than a plastic cup. Not only does this look more aesthetically pleasing (you can’t beat a high ball glass for class, can you?), but it will also make your drink taste better. Plastic receptacles can absorb flavours, meaning you could end up ruining all your good work at the last hurdle.
For iced tea novices and aficionados alike, this is a delicious and zesty recipe, which combines sweet and sour for a summer drink that still packs a punch.
• 2/3 cup of caster sugar
• ½ cup of lemon juice
• ¾ cup of orange juice
• 4 passion fruit, halved
• 6-8 tea bags of your choice
• 2 litres of boiling water
• ½ cup of fresh mint leaves
• 1 lemon, halved and thinly sliced
• 1 orange, halved and thinly sliced
- Add the caster sugar, lemon juice and passion fruit into a large pot.
- Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to simmer for roughly 15-20 minutes. Stir until the sugar has dissolved and the passion fruit has turned into a purée.
- Strain the syrup using a sieve and freeze to set into ice cubes.
- When the syrup has set, boil water using your Brita Filter Kettle and add teabags to brew. Let the water brew for approximately 10 minutes before removing the tea bags.
- Add the frozen syrup ice cubes to the tea and cool to room temperature.
- Finally, add the fresh mint leaves, sliced orange and lemon and then serve.